Asperger's meets P.T. - guess who Wins?

This morning I had my third physical therapy treatment with a therapist I have tremendous respect for.   For the first time, I was very aware of how my autism can interfere with my life.   

My therapist was getting increasingly troubled and frustrated with my inability to do what she was asking me to do.   I was supposed to do one thing, as I inhaled (breathing) for a few seconds.   Alternating with that I was supposed to do another thing.

Her instructions were clear.   At one point she told me that she would touch my wrist when I was supposed to do something.   I could feel intensity and tension in her touch, and I tensed up and did the opposite of what she wanted.  It was not deliberate at all!

She spoke to me more and more and I felt more and more over-stimulated.   She is from the Northeast and comes across to me very strongly with an intense voice.   In most situations that is fine!   I appreciate her directness.

When, however, I felt stressed, as I felt trying to do the right thing in my therapy in these moments, my body tightened up and I was doing worse and worse at what I was trying with the biofeedback she was doing with me.

My therapist was really trying to work with me.   She offered to stop for a minute or so, each time I told her I was overstimulated.   I tried somewhat fruitlessly, to explain how that wouldn't solve my issue.    I did honestly say to her that it was unfair for her.   I told her that simply her being herself in this situation was problematic for me. 

I tried to explain a little more, but she didn't have the time or inclination to listen to my words. 

If, I had had the chance, I would have told her that I needed her to speak more slowly to me, allowing me more time to take in her words.   I knew then what I needed to try to do.   Getting my body to do it was harder than resolving it in my head.

We will try to work on some other areas next week.   I hope that I will not fail.   She hopes that things will work out, because she feels like it will be a failure of hers if I fail.

I'm sad about this situation.   There is no "bad guy" here.   Perhaps, she can understand.  Perhaps if she can understand, we can work more effectively together when such a situation may come up again.

Aspergers-Autism is not a disability!   It makes me different from the norm in ways that complicate parts of my life.



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