Words of warning and welcome:

This is very much my blog, so don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. Obviously it started out as a blog about my cross-dressing but it has developed a great deal since then. It is a place where I can be anonymous and honest, and I appreciate that.

It will deal with many things and new readers would do well to check out the New Readers' Page above this and the tag down there on the right. Although there's nothing too bad in here there will be adult language, so be careful. If you think this needs a greater control, please let me know. Thank you!

Sunday, 22 July 2018

A Life in Music

Work is over: hurrah! Somehow I have survived since starting on this particular trough and I've made it to the other end where there is nothing pressing to do and I have had two free-ish days. I have drunk a lot of beer and I have pootled in the heat. I have finished my marking (yes, I marked enough to cover a lost contract when I got chucked off one contract for not being on standard). Okay, yeah, that needs some unpacking but now is not the time nor the place. Suffice it to say that I have survived and we have enough money for the year ahead. And, you know, a little bit extra. Which is nice.

I am indebted to a friend for this link which is awesome.


Whilst still at work, earlier on, I was asked to take part in a series of lessons that a retired teacher runs to, well, get Year 12 students discussing stuff. There is no curriculum as such, no exam, no real aim: just a series of lessons that asks difficult questions and occasionally provides answers. But there is also time and encouragement for students to take the lead and request stuff. This year I was requested to do Desert Island Discs, so of course I did because I have a monstrous ego and need to be validated.

Now, the list I chose for the lesson was not great. I agonised over it for a good month and was still playing with it (to the point of dropping two songs and bringing in two more on the fly) until the last minute. However, they were carefully curated and you may not be surprised by any of the choices. I shall share the list I shared then here today and then, maybe, share some other ones in a future post as I worked through the sort of things that I could have shared had it not been in the context of a school. As I'm sure is clear, there are parts of me that I am not thinking are particularly good ideas to share in normal conversation just yet. That sort of thing will be left to future generations, one hopes.

So, in the meantime, here's the list:

1. It's a Sin - Pet Shop Boys


I wanted to have at least one by the Pet Shop Boys, obviously, I am a big fangirl. And, also, it offered windows of opportunity to drop subtle hints. I initially wondered about using Why Don't We Live Together because of the amazing lyric "the woman in me shouts out / the man in me just smiles" but figured that the song was a bit long just for that line. Instead I went with the far less subtle It's a Sin because it was one of the earliest songs of their's that I liked (well, 1987, close enough) and it became very much the soundtrack to my internal monologue. I was dimly aware that it had to do with sexuality (it's about Tennant's homosexuality at his Catholic school) but mainly it summed up my own thoughts about, well, me. I wasn't homosexual but the idea that everything I did, do and will do being wrong was something that resonated. I didn't put it quite like that in the lesson, and the questions, it turned out, were pre-ordained and not connected to the songs I had - I think I threw the guy running the show.

Anyway, yes, this song heavily influenced my early years and informed my outlook on life as well as my own thoughts about my own choices. Because of course it did. From the classical chord changes and the clever lyrics to the use of synthesisers and aspects of UK life that don't translate that well elsewhere (not least Manchester-Blackpool area, putting me firmly in that part of the 80s that was inhabited by these people) it's not hard to see how this influenced my... everything. I wanted to use it as a springboard to talk about the musical, Closer to Heaven, and how the song twixt Straight Dave and Lee made me cry on the way into work that morning or the significance of You Choose making me cry in 2005, but I didn't.

2. It's Grim Up North - the KLF/the Justified Ancients of Muu-Muu/the JAMMs


This one was because I discovered it in 1992 and thought it was amazing. The video is pretty cool (the M62, in case you're wondering) and I love the way it works even though it totally shouldn't have the effect that it does. There's just something about the way the listing of towns and cities in the north is evocative and poetic even though it's just some Scottish bloke reeling off place names at a leisurely cadence. Then there's the build and the fact that it ends with Jerusalem and manages to really bring home the Dark Satanic Mills part of the anthem rather than the idea of building Jerusalem in Britain. By the bye, every question in Jerusalem can be answered with an emphatic 'no' in case you're wondering.

My interlocutor pointed out that the singer had never been to Yorkshire as he pronounced the 'h' in Harrogate and Huddersfield (though, to be fair, so do residents of either place if not the rest of Yorkshire) and that allowed him to segue into questions based on the fact that I was from Lancashire. I would have rather spoken about the sue of crows in the sound and the fact that the KLF burned £1m to prove a point (made on the end of their first album where a bonus track talked of burning GIROs) but it simply wasn't to be. I do an assembly/lesson on greed that ended with me burning money based on what these guys did and I've been doing that since about 2006. I'd've done it earlier but I didn't have my Thatcher scheme of work even vaguely planned until 2006 and that's when it became relevant. This song and an assembly by my History teacher about smoking (he burned £20) were the twin inspirations for that.

3. Jesus Freak - dctalk


I am sorry but I am not even vaguely embarrassed about this one. At the time I had been introduced to dctalk as being controversial in the USA and, honestly, I can see why they were. On both sides of the Christian divide. However, back then, I didn't see it. I fell in love with this track significantly later than the recording of it, sometime around 2001, and didn't own a copy until 2009 and Tilly buying me the tenth anniversary of the album. It stood in on the day for the whole of CCM (Contemporary Christian Music) and thus was supposed to offer a gateway to chat about my faith and journey at University. It didn't go that way because no one was prepared for this one. However, it also offers me a chance to talk now about it. I think I have spoken extensively of my faith before, so that need not detain us here, but one aspect I have not spoken of.

At University the second time I went into it hard, as I do most things, and decided to be a better human being. Part of this was my own meanderings about masturbation. Now, I don't hold with the 'self-harm' bollocks and was merely looking at it from an addiction point of view. I read a series of thoughts who all went to the same nub of the issue - if it controls you rather than the other way around then it is unhealthy. So, I tried to prove that it was not controlling me. I did this, initially, by not wanking except on Fridays (no shit, for real). Then I decided that wasn't enough control. I went 8 months in one go without wanking in 2001 and then settled on about once a month between 2002 and 2004. I went back to once a week with Toby, then went back to once a month for the year between Toby and Tilly. When with Tilly it was relegated to 'after I saw her' and now we're back up to once or twice a day.

Point is, there was, and is, a part of me that really likes these songs. They bring back a time in my life when I genuinely felt in control of things despite firmly giving up said order and control to My Favourite Imaginary Friend Who I Believe Is Not Imaginary And Created The Universe. In these dark days, feeling decidedly out of control in my life, they form an attractive contrast. As it was, we talked about Cliff Richard and how CCM was, for a time, at the cutting edge of the music scene. Because it was. I couldn't find my copy of Ha . Le . Lu . Jah by thebandwithnoname and it turns out that youtube simply doesn't have it, so I can't even share it here. If you do get a chance to have a listen, even if you don't believe, do - it's worth it for the styles of music alone.

4. Motorway to Damascus - The Divine Comedy


This was the B-side to a single my brother picked up called The Frog Princess - a bitter diatribe of a comedy song that was really quite nice. I think he'd been through a bit of a break up and that spoke to him. I stole it, it was a tape single, one night and fell in love with the b-side instead. I recorded it and now it's one of my staples. To me it summed up that whole environmental message that had been burned through the 1980s and was actually making a difference in the 1990s. I learned the lyrics and fancied myself capable of singing them on the way to school in Sixth Form (along with Let Me Entertain You by Robbie Williams in case you're wondering). It became something of a mantra. In the lesson it became a chance to talk about owning an electric car, something the retired teacher was and is interested in, but I wanted to talk about the power of music in activism and subversion in, well, everything. It was a bit of a tough choice between this and The Beloved Sweet Harmony to be honest but the latter's video and lyrics do rather lend themselves to something a tad more sexual - which I never realised until I was much older.

Whatever, the point is that the song scratches my surface and hints at my world-saving complex that still occasionally shines through like the shiny dog-turd that I have become. Mainly it's bollocks and we're all doomed, which is fine, but the song talks about a time afterward. "When the silhouetted ruins / of the crumbling cooling towers / are but / ivy-clad reminders / of a long forgotten power. / Must the monkeys leave Gibraltar's rock / and ravens flee the tower / before we'll look / and see ourselves / for what we really are?" Why, yes, Mr Hannon, yes indeed. Also, I have part of a half-baked novel predicated on this song. Obviously it's an alternate universe with a Socialist Republican Britain and a world-ending environmental apocalypse because of course it is. Incoherence! It's why I stopped writing. No, really, that plot-line is literally the reason I stopped.

5. Come Undone - Duran Duran


I had Liza Minelli here with something from Results as it was written and produced by the Pet Shop Boys and has amazing tracks that summed up the time before my Dad left. I was going to use it to sum up teacher training and being married and all that guff. At the last minute I dropped it and replaced it with this. Mainly for the video but also the words. I hear tell that the song is supposed to be a birthday gift to Simon LeBon's wife and that is probably true. I hear pain and sadness. I hear depression and being unable to show who you are inside and how that eats you up. In the lesson not much was said about this, it came so far out of left field and was so unknown to the teacher in charge that it was virtually ignored. It is from Duran Duran after they were famous in the doldrums of the 1990s. It is, to me, the song of longing. I was listening to it the first time I broke up with Toby as I drove home and it made me stop the car to cry. It still makes me cry.

Not because of a break up with Toby. No. Because of all the things inside that never get to come out. Because of all the things that I didn't have words to explain at the time, like Genderqueer or ASD, and all the things I still can't adequately explain because the words do not yet exist. I briefly mentioned the crying thing in the lesson, probably part of the reason we moved on so quickly, but I have to say the video helps. I'm sure you can see at least one reason why but also the drowning woman. For want of a better metaphor, that'll do for now. It might take a little crying but it does rather work in coming up for air. This was supposed to be the penultimate song but we ran out of time on the day so my sixth choice (again, I was in two minds) was never shared.

6. Girls and Boys - Blur


As it never happened in the lesson, I get to finish things tonight with a choice I knowingly didn't share and did not include. Now, obviously, this is because of the songs connections to cross-dressing and transsexualism and all that jazz. However, for me, it's mainly due to the fact it was the song I chose one night in my third year at University to play with friends in a bar. Kirsten, for twas she, took me to one side and asked me if I were a cross-dresser because if I were that would be okay and they would all support me in my choice. She claimed that it was simply the choice of song that had tipped her off and that it was only that. I stammered, stuttered and said very little of anything. In effect, I closed it down despite laying clues to that effect for the best part of two years by that point. This song, therefore, became imbued with what might have been - if only I had admitted it and accepted the support on offer. I can only guess at what may have been able to happen.

A double reason for this song then: it's central message and the longing for going back and fixing my own mistakes. And this one was unforced and egregious. I certainly wouldn't be where I am today had I done things differently the first time I played this in public and that may or may not have been better. Who knows, eh? I like to think that things would be better.


If you've read this far, well done! I hope I didn't bore you too much. I mean, if I did, what the hey, you chose to read this far and so I shan't apologise, it serves no purpose. Oh, and yeah, that chastity device I said I would never buy? Well, I kinda did with some money left over from the extra marking I did. It's here. I shall be honest and say I am looking forward to trying it out because then I can dial back on the wanking a bit (I'm slightly perturbed by the frequency) and maybe even enjoy the fact that there's no sex on the horizon or beyond. It's due later this week sometime. I'm torn on whether or not it's exploitative of Tilly and her lack of needs in this direction but, ultimately, I'm feeling horrendously selfish and a bit of a dick, so I shall embrace it and double down. Why the fuck not. The world is going to Hell and I figured I may as well get there first.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

There's more to life than joy-rides


Background: our chinchilla was put down. I did not mourn.

Incident: I borrowed some measuring tape from a drawer to ostensibly check my waist (fast approaching 36" apparently, bugger) because my trousers were making me burp (no, really). I also wanted to measure myself up for the fantasy chastity device I will never buy. However, in the drawer, apparently, was a ball of chinchilla fur. I did not see it. The following morning I got an angry text from Tilly telling me it was gone and demanding to know what I had done with it and why. My stuttering response was met with a jovial text saying she was over it, she'd found it, it was manky and she will be binning it. Cue confusion from me and feeling like shit in the meantime, as one would.

Aftermath: in discussion with colleagues I let myself be talked into a position where I revealed that Tilly and the children had been on a holiday to the seaside without me. My colleagues expressed concern and surprise, I pointed out that it was better for everyone because we know our strengths. Tilly and the children had a great time, I got some work done. Luckily, conversation moved on pretty quickly after that (and the revelation that I wasn't wearing my wedding ring, my defence that I haven't worn it in a year was met with further shock and did nothing to help matters).


Background: in order to allow me to get more marking done, Tilly took the children to a birthday party today on the bus. They missed the bus back, waited for the next one and came home late. I had made tea but I made the wrong sandwich for Tilly - using filling left over from a previous sandwich on the wrong bread.

Incident: I joined Tilly eating in the kitchen, she was in a self-confessed good mood. This became an apparently jokey attack on my movement of some paper from the hallway to the pantry with some other items to go back to school. I defended it, she kept going "joking" that people had proper places to put things, mine made no sense to her and it was ridiculous. I got annoyed, and fired a snark back. This was the wrong thing to do. Tilly told me she was joking, that she was sorry, and that maybe I ought to go elsewhere. I did. She then took the youngest out for a walk because she didn't want to get into a discussion about what is wrong, as always happens after such incidents, and that I had destroyed her good mood. It always happens when she's been out and had fun with friends, she said, and it's clearly being relaxed that does it.

Aftermath: I post this here. Tilly returns and avoids the subject assiduously. When finally confronted reassures me that she wasn't attacking me. I say it's mainly because I am the way I am and she has been with 'normal' people; she agrees and takes it further - the reason we are where we are in our relationship (such that it is) is down to how I am (we are referring to my ASD). I remind her that she said her perfect relationship is out there and that she deserves better. She says nothing but her face agrees.


Don't know why I'm posting this except for the fact that I am a horrible person.

That's it, nothing to see here.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Movies by the Great John Woo

Be her or have her tell me what to do?

Not in a submissive sense, I've pointed out before that I would
be terrible at being a submissive. I'm far too arrogant and
self-centred.
Procrastination has reached all time high as I dive into the part of the year I like to refer to as marking hell. It is marking hell because of all the extra work I take on at this time of year, sure, but we need the money and I never seem to make enough to keep us afloat more than one year. Ah, the old amelioration. Basically, I have had some extra cash this year but blown it on beer, therapy, more beer and Magic Cards. Of course I have. I'm not saying I could have done without the extra work but I am saying that I could have been a little less pressured economically into doing it than I currently feel. Equally it wouldn't be so bad if I had used the recent holiday effectively to mark what I needed to mark and clear the desks regarding things like reports so that I had a clear week to get going. And, of course, if I were any good at being consistent then maybe I wouldn't get hit for being, well, inconsistent with my marking.

Oh yes, you are so accurate.

You lying little cock.
Previously, I have crowed about my accuracy and such. I have received plaudits for it in the past. No more. Like anything I try to do long term, I get complacent and lazy with it. Blase and a bit devil may care, you know? And so it comes to pass that I have reached the end of this rabbit hole. I am going to try and pull it all back but I worry that I won't be able to. I shall lose the contract and the chance to come back in the future and, with that, the extra stream of money that the family has rather come to rely on will dry up at exactly the moment that we rather need the extra money to cover rising shopping costs through inflation and an extra member of our oh-so-select group.

Not related, but she is using
paper to write in a physical
sense so it'll do for now.
Addiction too. Having previously spoken of line writing sites and their ilk I have also started getting into cornertime via an app, because of course I have, and so have been deliberately wasting time on both typing lines and standing in a fucking corner because why the fuck not, right? Along with obvious conditioning in my masturbatory habits and you have a recipe for a lot of time on an evening wasted and not a lot to show for it except a strange feeling of satisfaction and lingering shame, which is kinda the point I feel of masturbation in the first place. If you're not feeling ashamed afterward then you probably aren't doing it right. I have joined tumblr properly - want to feel humbler, go on tumblr, re-evaluate your life: see the world unfurled in front of your eyes (your eyes). You'll despise the state of affair, despair at feminists and Men's Rights Activists in constant fights about their rights to resolve the plights caused by whites, must this injustice go on? Everyone is wrong. (sigh) Everything is shit (Shi-it). But... ooh, grumpy cat gif! (Ji-if) It's Gif! Ahem.

I forget where I snatched this from. Hasn't stopped me
wondering whether or not this would have been a better
outcome back in the day though.

At least alone there's no one to worry and be sad when you're
gone, you know?
I joined because I saw a tumblr (funny that) and thought I needed to read further. So, of course, that was another few hours of my life over several nights. As was the time when the family went on holiday to Bournemouth whilst I was still at work, Sunday to Thursday (Wed and Thu I spent in work until 9.30pm on Open Evenings voluntary-not-voluntary-unpaid-overtime), and had a lovely time at the beach. Tilly loved the fact that there were extra adults (imagine!) who could help with the child-rearing and barely got in contact the entire time they were away. Ostensibly to give me time to get on and work but mainly because I was part of what they were going to get away from. Which I don't blame them for, I really don't, and I did use the time. I say use the time. I went on GetDare and cross-dressed and wanked at pron.

Ah, but, you see, other people actually put in effort and work
hard to achieve things rather than being half-arsed and too
lazy to edit anything once begun. You twat.
In the same time a colleague (Harry) got a job interview and pulled out after being woo-ed a little by everyone from the Head down to stay - including being offered and accepting less hours at a slightly inflated rate than pro-rata. A friend managed to write a decent chunk of a book, as did Tilly, and the friend got rated as not being cliched, which is no mean feat (and totally deserved by the way). I got blanked by my classes as they left for exams (again, nothing new here) whilst Alice got feted (and with good reason by the bye) as did Stanislav and, predictably, Harry. They were all badgered to attend the Sixth Form Ball - no one asked me.

I'm less good now than I was last year, itself on a par with the year before and so on. Past-Me looks at me now with despair and fear. I look back with ill-disguised contempt at what I have become and forlornly peer about, wondering how long I can keep this whole charade going. I'm fat (closing on 11st 7oz and with a pot belly that causes most things to jut out alarmingly), lazy, lonely and a shit father and useless teacher. Not even in the sexually deviant sense I'm a fucking useless twat.

Embarrassing enough?

Monday, 30 April 2018

Disappointment

Not sure what I'm doing posting, to be honest, but I feel I need to type something.

Image result for teacher
Yeah, alright, this'll do. She looks far more in control of her
words and stuff than I am right now.
It's not death that is needed, no suicide, it's some way of stopping things. It's some way of trying to get away from all of this. Work is hard, obviously, and I'm not catching up on my marking at all. I'm falling further and further behind whilst watching other things burn. My colleague has presided over students who have totally failed coursework because, and I quote, he didn't do well in his coursework and still got an A. Fucking hell. So I did some marking for him, some student support for him and have wasted hours of my life trying to get him to understand a markscheme he then failed to use at any point with his students. I spent hours talking him through exemplar material he failed to share with his students then hours trying to catch him up with the sodding marking in the final bit. Also, he too is failing to mark. He is not depressed. He goes playing football and lives at home and has meals cooked for him and goes out with friends regularly. Basically, fucking hell.

Related image
Oh, yes, obviously. Like this. Why the fuck not.
Okay, I do that too often. I state an issue I am having and then immediately seek something to ameliorate it. Truth is, if I were less shit I would be up to date and getting up to date. Issues such as the above would be annoying but fine normally. I have been through worse. Hell, I had a colleague go off mad in my first year and took on an extra four periods of teaching of a course that I had no idea of the fucking content. I spent three hours a night genning up on the content and the examination. I'd go to sleep reading the sodding specification of an A Level course I was making that year, spending hours (16) in one week making a new database of students. I'd spend three to four hours marking before and after lunch on a Saturday and fit in shopping. Sunday I'd go to Church and then mark all afternoon. I'd sit in my classroom and mark and plan lessons for two hours at the end of each day before going home for tea and then planning lessons... The point is, I'm not doing that.

Image result for screaming baby
A screaming one year old child.

Because, whyever not.
Mandatory amelioration: we have three children and I get tired. But, then, I have been ignoring them. My Boy asked to play cards this weekend and we did not play any cards. I had the opportunity and the time and I chose not to. I chose not to. In the week I get back so late on an evening that I don't even get time to see my children. This evening is a good example, I came back to a screaming youngest and a flustered Tilly and our elder two on the trampoline. Arguments abound twixt Tilly and the Girlie, the Boy was upset he couldn't watch a video with me before bed, then I hold a screaming child for a bit. This is why I stay at work as late as I can. But I can't focus on work, I can't.

This is what I want to stop. I want an end to the stress and the disappointment I feel at myself for continuing to be a lazy little cunt.

Image result for maid curtsey

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Confusion

Several things, all at once, but played out separately in time. However, there are connections.

I am minded of the opening narration to the TV film Threads

Huh, here's an image of them from the internet!
Back in the now finished holidays I bought myself some new trousers. My old jeans, always on the baggy side, have become... too baggy. I'm fatter but the waist is too loose and there weren't enough belt loops to use a belt to effectively hold the waist up enough. It has been annoying for a long time. I got some time to go out and seek out new trousers. Alone, I ended up trying on a couple of female jeans and trousers because I damn' well could. The reasoning being twofold: why not and if they fit well enough I could maybe even get away buying some. Well, none fit. And no, I could not get away with it, my body would make such a decision a little too obvious. However, I enjoyed trying them to find this out. So it was that I ended up settling on 'hunting trousers for small game in dry conditions' from a sporting shop. In brown. Pleased with my purchase I showed them to Tilly.


Here's an image of the Armani jeans (women's)
that I tried at a bargain outlet.

They felt lovely, were a tad long on the legs, a
bit too tight fitting on the butt and a cool
£50 to buy. If the first issues didn't put me off,
the price certainly did!
I ended up baby-wrangling so sort of threw them at her with a request to share her opinion. I don't buy new clothes often, still less deviate from the script as much as I had done here. She had a look at the washing instructions and scrutinised them far more than, in retrospect, trousers warranted. However, me being me, I noted nothing untoward, I had asked her opinion. She asked a few questions about where I had bought them, which was odd, but I answered as fully as I could. She then quizzed me on the washing instructions, which I hadn't seen yet, but I did what I could. Finally, after about an hour or so of on-again-off-again conversation regarding them she asked out-right: "Are these women's trousers?" I was taken aback. No, I responded, what makes you say that?

"Where you got them, were there women's trousers?"

"Uh... probably? I don't know. They're hunting trousers. I didn't know they made male or female versions." This is true, nothing was suggested on any of the signage, it had been on jogging stuff, running stuff, swimming stuff, badminton, football etc, but nothing on these. I had assumed they were male-oriented, for sure, the only label I did see was for 'men's hunting shorts' and there was no female corollary. I shared this. I asked why she wanted to know.

"Because I'd rather know if so."

I appreciate the sentiment, I do, I just don't
actually believe it to be one that Tilly holds.

Or, thinking of it, that most people
actually understand or believe.

I think maybe Depeche Mode had it right
with Policy of Truth. The vast majority
of people have no idea what it is that they
mean when they say this.
At the time I didn't really question it, but I felt something was awry. It came to me a few days later, as such things are wont to do, and it was in two parts (as always). First: why would it even matter? If she couldn't work it out having read the label and the washing instructions and inspected them closely then what difference would it make if they were tailored any particular way? How would it make a difference to me? Second: we had not agreed any such thing, she wasn't trusting me.

Temper that second point though: I looked. And, if I thought I could have got away with it, I would have bought feminine cut jeans. So, sting: she can't trust me.

But, and I will return to this point in self-justification, what difference does it make if one cannot tell? I do not believe for a moment that her knowing would be for her benefit. Tilly has made it abundantly clear that she does not want to know about any of my cross-dressing and would sooner I did not partake in it. Despite The Concession (made without realising what she was conceding it would appear) she rather does want to control my clothing so that cross-dressing cannot take place of any kind. Her kidnapping (with approval) of a hooded top of mine is not, of course, cross-dressing. And, in fairness, I'm not sure such a description and distinction exists, so don't assume I'm pointing out hypocrisy so much as suggesting that it may not matter. All this is academic.

The confusing part was that she offered me the compliment when I wore the trousers the following day that they "look good" and I "suit them". Forgive me, and I'm probably going to Hell for thinking it, but I suspect these compliments were disingenuous - they would not have been applied had my choice of tailoring turned out to have been feminine rather than masculine (I am assuming some misogyny on the part of hunting clothing manufacturer labels) and so were not based on the clothing at all so much as they were given because she feels I expect or want the appearance of compliments. Tilly is, of course, correct, but it did rather sour the potentially positive effects of offering such complimentary language.


It's very nice, but perhaps not the greatest
starter!
The second incident to relate is when I went out with an old friend of mine, possibly my oldest, Jeremy in the local urban conurbation for a few drinks. As is usual I waxed lyrical on my low mood and, because he is an old friend, Jeremy knew how to get me to talk more. In the course of a long-ranging conversation he shared that he had thought of suicide at the age of 18 whilst in University (this being the spark that propelled him into the Navy rather than finish his course first before doing that) but not since. He shared his upset at not having a girl child (he has two boys) but I missed that hint, Tilly informed me later that a discussion with Jerry's wife revealed that they can have no more children, I didn't ask. I should have done, but I did not. Anyway, beside the point, Jeremy said that if I felt suicidal then I could talk to him.



Here's the confusion. I'm not sure that's what he meant. It's what people say, it's what is expected but, and here's the rub, there's only so many times one can go over the same issues (I've been doing it on and off since 1994) with people before they quite understandably stop caring and move on. I kinda used Jeremy up when we were at school together when it came to talking, though I appreciated that he listened as long as he did, and that is sort of illustrated by the fact that though I knew he was having a hard time at University (and I advised him to jack it in and join the navy he loved, based on his explanation of his options, I can't claim any credit for either the idea nor his decision to take that route) I was unaware of how deep his despondency had hit. Because, even though we talked (via letter), Jeremy knew better than to engage me in conversation on such things lest I dominate. As I did when we were out. Luckily, there were beers and different pubs so I managed to shut down the conversation soon after and return to beers, gardening and child-rearing tales.


In order to explain why she found me boring, Toby once said
that I would never ride a bike into a lake, just to ride a bike
into a lake.

I think, in her far greater experience and understanding of
emotions, she rather hit the nail on the head. Okay, the
specific example is ridiculous (and I totally didn't get it
at the time), but the point is very sound.

It is an accurate and, I feel, relevant comment to bring to
mind here.
Basically, I find it hard to trust the idea that people really mean the support they say they are offering. My experience is that it is something people say, something that is socially understood to have limits that NTs simply 'get' and respect. I have never known what the limits are, seem incapable of learning (or more likely unwilling to learn) what those 'socially acceptable' limitations are when it comes to discussing depression and suicide. As a consequence I used to take people's offers of support at, well, what I consider to be face value. Now we know why, of course, and we also know why it's not actually what people mean. Or, rather, people don't mean what I take the offers to mean. It is I who is in the minority, and thus I who is in the wrong. I over-share, go on repeat and end up exhausting the person offering to do the listening. However much I bash Tilly on here it should be borne in mind that she bears the brunt of my hard-to-follow and self-wallowing rants more often than not. Truly anyone faced with that barrage of verbiage would resort to vague disinterest as a survival mechanism. As Toby said, not as a hurtful thing but as an observation (I now know), I am a very boring intense person to be around.

If you know the series you now perhaps
understand why Tilly thought, correctly,
that I would love it.
As an example, back on that 'date-night' visiting my Mother one summer Tilly had expected us to take a meal and then have a spark of something romantic. She was waiting for me to enthuse her like I had when we first met, waiting for my enthusiasm and bounce to infect her and thus end up doing something romantic. Instead she was treated to an architectural history lesson using my home town as exemplars on the Borders and building styles in general. In detail. For three hours. QED. I am a boring and intense person. It never occurred to me to behave any differently, I found (and find) that very interesting and, on that night, found some new things that I could slot into what I already knew to augment, improve and expand on my existing understanding of how the town developed, why it developed the way it did and how that, in turn, affected future development and direction of travel. Even down to the lanes on the main bridge or the use of traffic lights on a roundabout. Because, well, yes, put like that: I am boring and intense. It's, well, what I do. The concept that I had got it so wrong and missed out on an opportunity to rekindle romance was not something of which I was aware until Tilly pointed it out maybe a month ago.

With that lengthy (and self-exemplar) anecdote one sees why it is that I treat Jeremy's offer with gratitude but wariness. And some confusion. He has enough going on in his own life, he cannot be expected to shoulder any of my bleating and dark thoughts. That's one of the reasons this semi-anonymous blog exists - it is easier to listen to and offer advice to someone who is semi-anonymous and easier as a semi-anonymous blogger to scream into the void - people can choose to read, skip or even respond at their own leisure: there is no pressure. Nothing is expected on any side. Hurrah!

Finally, line break time.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Stagnation

Yeah.
I shared my feelings with Tilly. She got a little angry and upset, were her concessions worth nothing? Was it not worth something, at least? She wasn't going to be made to feel guilty over things she wasn't doing and there was no point discussing sex again, it was so far from either of us that there was simply no point. The day afterward she opined that this was my version of meltdowns, I'd asked about this a few months ago, and my behaviour was simply a meltdown. I said I wanted to know. She told me.

Luckily, I also had Leslie's take, which, forgive me, I believe to have been a little more helpful.

This wasn't it. I am rather looking forward
to it though.

This is what I had on cask. It is amazing.

It smells and tastes like, well, hazelnut
praline. It is 6.5% but it is so worth it.
Anyway, yes, I went out on a trip and then played (of all things) netball that evening. It was fun. I gained many compliments for my game from people who could actually play - actual PE teachers. I think my only compliments from PE teachers ever. I'm not complaining. I enjoyed the experience. I even had a beer on a schoolnight because fuck it all, y'know? The next week happened, I even managed to shift some marking, which was nice. I also got many compliments on the Parents' Evening the previous night to the netball which was also nice. Then term finished. I had some ales. I went to my local ale shop and got talking there and got given a bottle of beer free. Not complaining.

I wrote a nice review, the place deserved it, and since then I have been treated almost as a friend. It's... nice, but off-putting. Still, I now get a 10% discount randomly (and generously) applied and even got a free beer glass thrown in the other night. I also know the guy's name, which is significantly better than how I usually approach these things. I do need to learn how to small talk better though, now I know why.

It's a good album.

Buy it.
I also went out on Wednesday last week with a friend but stopped off before meeting them and had some rather heavy brews. It made me... introspective more than usual when I met with my friend. I shared the suicidal ideation. It hasn't really gone away. I have heard nothing since. I may have over-shared, I have that tendency. Not sure what to make of that, don't want to push too much, obviously, but I think that is the sort of thing that kills prospective friendships.

I have got some work done though, nowhere near as much as I should be doing (natch) but some. Which is better than the half term back five or so weeks back. I have had a lot of ale (and that's been fun) and I have a cold again, so light-headedness.

Movement. Upward movement. Stagnation, certainly, but movement.


Saturday, 17 March 2018

Drowning

It looks so peaceful.
Today, as it becomes clearer that I am drowning, Tilly suggested that I look into spending a couple of weeks away from home to catch up with work and get back on an even keel. It's tempting but financially impossible at present.

On Thursday, unbeknownst to Tilly, I went in and confessed the fact that I was drowning to a manager I trust. It is getting ridiculous. I can barely gasp for breath at the moment. I don't help, of course, in the fact that the more stressed and under pressure I get the more down-time and rest I need. Being sick this last weekend and having the family all sick has really taken it out of me. I have not had any time to work before 8 or 9pm since the snow-days. Staying at work doesn't help as people tend to use me as a sounding board. I am now telling my children that I can't play with them as I need to work on an almost daily basis.





I want to call bullshit. Girls and Boys on the ASD spectrum
are generally the same. However, society expects girls
to behave in ways that are a tad masculine more than it will
allow boys to behave less masculine - ergo, ASD females
will mask more effectively as they adapt to expectations.
Males also adapt to expectations, to act out and to be harshly
treated. Girls have it far worse, by the bye, but I call busllshit
on the graphic, which perpetuates the situation where ASD is
under-diagnosed in females.

Oh, and vocabulary. Sorry, but fuck you, graphic.
My ASD, now we know why, is the cause. No, other people don't find this sort of thing difficult. Tilly is not getting angry about the fact that I can barely function on what 'should' be done and then have to fill time with videos and just having 'time off'. Other people don't need to spend time on a lunchtime alone with youtube whilst at work, away from other people. Other people don't find trip-organising stress removes their ability to think in a straight line. Other people don't find that they can't plan more than a week ahead so that decorating destroys their ability to catch up with marking. Other people are able to function after helping a sick child in the night. Other people are able to work around dance shows. Other people get ill and recover so that they can keep up with work. Other people do things automatically and don't need to recover from doing the pots in a morning. Other people are, well, normal and get to enjoy conjugal relations with their partner because their partner wants to spend that sort of time and effort with them rather than feeling pressured so much that they can't be doing with it. Other people are able to be romantic, and most choose not to most of the time, but can turn it on when required and be guided by their partner. Other people do not have ASD.


Valid.
If I could find a reliable and painless method then I suspect I would indulge in the most selfish of all acts - suicide. Selfish because it solves nothing except for me, as I would be removed from the equation. Everyone else would suffer a bit, and possibly a lot, because I do the earning and the paying of the bills. My children would be very very broken by it because they use me as a support. My colleagues would be hugely hit because they would, in the short term, have to shoulder a lot more work and effort and, in the long term, deal with my replacement.

But, as Harry pointed out a few weeks ago, suicide would sort things out for me. And I would no longer care about the consequences.

I won't, of course. I am too logical, too driven by duty and addicted to being a martyr. I also have a healthy fear of pain and mistakes. Time is a great giver of opportunities to fix mistakes or at least let them dull into insignificance. Ergo, the longer I am alive the more chance I have of outrunning the stupidity I inflict daily. It may not be logically coherent, my ASD tells me it works. As a consequence, I shan't be ending things any time soon.

To be this useful