Words of warning and welcome:

This is very much my blog, in that it will try to positively document my life (something that I usually try to keep very private). So don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. Obviously it started out as a blog about one particular aspect of my life (see the most numerous tag) 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, 12 June 2016

Sing Hallelujah


Colour me surprised.

Pictured: not Sink the Bismarck
After the soul-searching of the last entry, Tilly decided that she would "stop being angry at me" and accept that I was unlikely to change because I am Aspergic. Furthermore, she has decided to stop hoping for all the things that neuro-typical people offer. This has accompanied a change in our relationship to a more positive physical note. I'm not complaining.

Yesterday I was off examining, so I need to get on with that now and will post here even less than of late. But I was welcomed home. I even got presents that were appreciated for a change. There was a lovely brewdog beer shop there too, it was London, but I eschewed buying ale on the grounds that it was a bit expensive. Rare, but over-priced even for that, though I am now ruing the fact that I didn't get some Sink the Bismarck in - it's an ale that has 41% ABV, making it the strongest ale in the world and beating a German brewery who brewed a 40% ABV ale (hence the name).

That's not the point. The point is that things have improved. And that this state of affairs is not down to anything I have done or not done. Like most things, it is out of my control.


Tuesday, 7 June 2016

New Dress

This isn't it, but it's the closest I could
find. I now own a skater dress in these
colours. Yay?
First things first: I bought a new dress. It was a whole English pound and it looked good. As you'd expect for something that cheap it is far from flattering, trying it on makes me look less good than normal in a dress and that is saying something. Still, it's new and it was very cheap, part of me is made happy by the fact that I bought it and the fact that I got it home without any awkward questions. Yay? Interestingly, several people commented positively when I was in the shop that I must be spoiling my lady and that I deserved a reward. Ah, if only they knew.

I also seem to have surfaced a little bit from the deep dark hole I've been in since sometime around last summer. I'm not totally out, of course, but I am actually doing things again. I did some work recently and I even planned ahead. Two mornings in a row now I have woken and risen from bed with my alarm and got into work at approaching the time I would like. Still a bit later, but closer than I have been since Christmas. I've even made three new lessons. I made some new lessons! I like making lessons, it is fun, and I haven't really done it properly in ages, so that was nice.

Ale has been drunk and reviewed, again, and that is nice too. I feel like I have a hobby again. It may close to addictive behaviour, maybe, but I suspect it's harmless for the moment, provided I don't go mad. I've even stopped eating so much junk so that my flab has stopped exponentially increasing. I mean, it isn't in retreat yet, but it has at least stopped expanding. Also, I read this comic, worth a look.


A while ago now, it seems, I was taken to task, rightly so, on my apparent relationship with Tilly. I had much to mull over. What follows after the line-break, then, is the result of that mulling.

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Asperger's

If I felt like that, rather than punished as I do,
then this whole thing might actually be a
positive for me. Of course, it's hard to know what
the model thinks in this picture but I choose to
believe that it was consensual.

I recall an argument that claims that anything
in the BDSM genre is harmful regardless of
consent and thus should be banned.

Eh, what do I know?
There has been a significantly darker tone to my musings of late and it has got progressively darker over the last week. I have been playing music on repeat and having headaches from the pressure inside my skull. I even managed to get a discussion with Tilly on Friday night (when I had arranged tentatively to speak with a friend online) and air some of my concerns over our relationship. I thought I was making progress, I really did, and even making it clear that the most recent degeneration of our physical relationship was down to her and not me, for a change. After all, part of the litany over the last years has been that it is I that undermines and destroys any attempt that she makes in the physical department. But, as I pointed out, the spiral away was started at the end of last July, when all was well and I was being positive, and not afterward.

I'm not saying my downward spiral was caused by that change, I don't think it was, but it didn't help and does not. Nor is my mood a cause of the downward spiral of our physical relationship. Tilly was reluctant to face up to this, though she conceded the dating of it and the manner of it (being down to her rather than me). At least, she did to a point. She shared that she had been reading about ASD and Asperger's and relayed some of the things that she had found from wives who had AS husbands. Following the end of the conversation, nothing really resolved and much depression, I looked these up myself.

And what I found.

One thing my reading confirmed is that Grayson Perry is not
aspergic. It has also reminded me that most healthcare
professionals believe that cross-dressing is tied to the idea that
the cross-dresser is an autogynopheliac.

I'm not.

For the record, I find most things about me a complete turn off.
So, full disclosure here: I am very likely suffering from AS and I am very likely, therefore, the worst kind of unreliable narrator. Virtually every piece I found recommended that the AS sufferer recognise that the criticisms their neuro-typical partner made of them were real and take responsibility for them. In short, the AS sufferer must understand that they were, in a nutshell, the cause of the negative vibes in the relationship. I read posts from wives of AS husbands who said they rued the day they'd met their husbands and would recommend anyone dating someone with AS to run away right now. I read self-help blogs that proliferated with articles about AS people are incapable of affection, romance, emotion and love. I read advice that said that there was no point trying to be romantic with AS husbands (or wives) as they would not notice. I found countless references to AS sufferers in marriages approaching sex as wanting a lot or not wanting it at all but only advice on how to deal with the latter (as, apparently, the former isn't an issue to people). And, in all of this, the only advice to the AS person was: "suck it up, your brain is different, now fix it".

I got a bit upset.

Apparently.
I complimented Tilly today and shared that this was something I, as an AS person, shouldn't be able to do. Tilly paused a moment before replying. Apparently I can't do it. My compliments seem forced or 'off' and never sound sincere. Indeed, none of my compliments sound natural or complimentary. So, saying that Tilly looked nice or was wearing a pretty outfit or even commenting on playing chess like I did, these are all comments that end up making Tilly less likely to feel wanted and loved. Silence was just as bad. The end result being that she feels lonely and unloved most of the time and thus more inclined to disappear off on an evening or else not particularly inclined to be romantic to me. There was no point, so the articles suggested and Tilly reaffirmed, in offering me any compliments or trying anything romantic as I wasn't likely to spot it or, if I did, I would be unable to reciprocate or offer any inducements to continue.


AS people are also likely to be emotionally immature, said many of the links and articles that I read, that would equate to wanting more physical contact but as a child rather than as an adult. I would want someone to care for me like a mother rather than a romantic partner. I would be unable to offer anything romantic unless it was part of my current 'project' which would end with marriage. Suddenly I was minded of Tilly's comments to me that what I expected from our relationship was emotionally immature and like a teenager. Countless blogs and posts and experiences from women with AS partners spoke of their husband being an extra child - something that, again, Tilly has often commented on with me. Sex with these partners, when it occurred, was likely to be mechanical and all about getting to an end point - there would be no playing around or experimentation. Which... well, part of our discussion on Friday included the gem that Tilly did not see the point in being playful or experimental in bed because it was all about the end result and "an efficient use of the time" before children burst in or we were interrupted. The "quickest and most efficient" method of having sex, so Tilly told me, was "bog-standard missionary" and "there's no point in anything else" because "it's not enjoyable, it's not fun and it might not work".


When I raised that I wasn't interested, necessarily, in orgasm for myself this was used against me later - when talking about how I was frustrated that stroking her hair or holding her hands like she enjoyed rarely resulted in anything being done back: after all, that would be 'going further' and thus invalidated my earlier point.


Since Friday we have snuggled twice in bed at night. It's been nice. But, as there's "no emotional connection" and AS sufferers don't know how to bridge that gap, so my reading tells me, there's no hope of anything else. We agreed that we couldn't spare the time to spend with one another to make it work properly because there's no way to get anyone to look after the children. I pointed out that left about a decade until they were old enough to look after themselves. Tilly opined that there was no point as nothing she would do would ever be good enough. I returned that, no, once a month was not good enough but the sex was fine. Tilly took that to mean that the sex wasn't good enough and proof of her point.


I want to suggest that maybe Tilly has AS traits too but that seems somewhat churlish. In the meantime I suppose I have all the porn the internet has to offer and time most evenings to indulge. Ale in hand, curtains drawn and alone.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

King's Cross


This morning I woke to a dream in which I came out as a cross-dresser at University at the end of my first year (clearly not possible, I was dating my first girlfriend at the time and she would hardly have been supportive). I imagined how much better life would have been had I done so, maybe even joining the LGBT (they had added the T in my first year) society (they would add a Q the year I went to train to teach). I might even have met someone who was into that sort of thing, who knows, and had a relationship that better approximated what I was like at the time. Unlikely, I know, but this was a dream after all.

A public face of happiness was only just managed.

Harry has spotted that I am not in a good place and
I very nearly told Carla just how deep the rabbit-hole
goes, but I am a coward, so I didn't.

Besides, telling people as a teacher that you are
depressed and a bit broken is not a path to job security
or even toward actually fixing any of the issues.

We all know that they aren't work based.
A thawing perhaps? Difficult to say. The week gone has been a rocky one with much going on and much of it propelled by my own inability to actually do anything. A year group was leaving, for the last time, and they showered my colleagues with thoughtful cards and so forth. You may have guessed already that they did not do so with me. Indeed, on the last occasions with three groups I had massive absence from the students, who were preparing for last sessions with other teachers. One reaps what one sows and I have not been at my best this last academic year - starting with the spiral in September and not really recovering since. I ought to have expected this. Still, I navigated getting samples sorted, weathered Harry gaining rave reviews (okay, no, that was good for them) and supported Alice getting home early to see the new child a few nights properly rather than having it all needlessly rushed. I hope, in that regard at least, I am a nice enough boss. Not completely nice, you understand, just nice enough.

She looks happier than Tilly did.

Either on Thursday or Friday.
On Thursday Tilly and I spent an evening together. I have recently taught the Boy chess, and he has taught it to his sister and everyone has been playing it. Out of nowhere, Tilly asked for a game of chess, I didn't need telling twice. However, on the evening in question she spent a number of hours sorting things out on the sofa, liberally strewn with work stuff and crochet so that I couldn't sit next to her. We eventually played, three times, and the final time I don't mind admitting was a bit of a turn on. She played aggressively and well, winning the game. I shared my thoughts on the matter and she agreed to snuggle but no more. We ended up having the Boy in bed and she and I snuggled to one side but she was rapidly uncomfortable and it lasted a whole five minutes before she moved over and snuggled the Boy instead. This was the evening after some of the events described above.

The following evening I inquired as to playing chess again, and maybe more, Tilly shot down the maybe-more aspect and we snatched a game (which she won rather convincingly) in amongst her work. Friday had been a bit shit at work too. I had hoped to get loads done but, instead, I was treated to about three hours where I had to avoid my room. A student, the one I've mentioned before, was using me as a listening post. It is depressing, because it is not going well for this student, and, frankly, I'm not qualified enough to support them. I do it because a) I am flattered to be chosen but mainly b) because no one else is available - professionally or otherwise - because funding has been cut and there are no therapists and the support team in Sixth Form is over-worked, under-funded and dealing with too many crises already. I did what I could and I avoided the room apart from that, making working difficult as my excuses required much wandering about. In all of this one of my classes started getting worried about some marked work (they don't need it now and it would actually be a bad thing for them to have, long story, until later) but my professionalism was impugned and done politely, nicely - anger wasn't an option. More... disappointment. So, yeah, a Friday evening of being fit into Tilly's hectic schedule was interesting to say the least.

Famously Germaine Greer
reviewed this book entirely on the
basis of this front cover - which the
author did not choose and changed
the next chance they got.

However, apart from the age of the
child, that sums up Friday night.
I went to bed at the same time as Tilly but after nipping to the loo returned to the bedroom to find she'd brought the Boy in again. Between us. She talked book and Twitter before falling asleep.

Saturday was a normal Saturday for once. The Boy and I went shopping, much to his chagrin, and then had a MacDonald's (because we know how to live). Tilly saw us cross a road without using the crossing and was a little annoyed and upset. I did my autistic thing of not really getting why - we were safe and the crossing was carefully judged.  I got a haircut, Tilly did not comment on it for good or ill, still hasn't. I'll admit, that stings. I make a point of being complimentary about changes in her clothing, hair and so forth. I guess I am a two, not the three I see myself as (she's about a nine). This follows earlier in the week when I finally got round to tidying my beard and face - that has also had no comment for good or ill passed, nor is it likely to. I digress.

That evening she watched a DVD she'd ordered and encouraged me to go to the pub. Which I did, and enjoyed it, returning to join her watching the DVD and then heading to bed. She was doing exercises for her back, the use of the hotwater bottle and the bringing down of a duvet prevented sitting together on the sofa beforehand, and then fell asleep without much conversation.

How I imagine I appear to Tilly.
Today I was to take the Girlie swimming, you can perhaps see where this is going, and we ended up having to come back because the pool had been unexpectedly shut for an hour. We joined Tilly and the Boy going to the park. The Girlie shared we had crossed our road without the crossing and Tilly exploded. I wasn't respecting her wishes and had agreed to her very specific requests when we had gone out. I must stress that it is a Sunday and that there is next to no traffic on our road apart from the odd bus. She would have preferred me to have the nerve to say I wasn't going to do as she had asked, to say that I didn't want to do as she wished. She thought that we had agreed that I would always use crossings with the children and that we had talked it over a great deal. Throughout this tirade I didn't say anything, I just kept my brow furrowed and set my jaw. I'm not claiming this was a good idea, by the way, just supplying the context for what happened next. She wound herself up, fully exploded, started crying and declared she was going home. Both children started getting worried, I assured them it was fine, and Tilly responded "It isn't bloody fine!" and then walked with us to continue her tirade.

Yeah, I am that clueless.

Though, apparently, none of this is down to Anxiety. That is
never shared.

Except, of course, when it is.

I recently was told that the reason I was never left
anything to do with the children when Tilly was away was
that she was scared stiff we'd all die in a car-crash without
her - I was allowed to ferry the Boy back and forth back in
November, what more do I want?
She would have had greater respect for me, she said, if I had the nerve to say what she had requested was stupid. Fine, said I (now angry and making my own atrocious decisions), it was stupid. This just riled her up further and she kept ranting. I noted key changes to the language, I had now, apparently, called her stupid (I had done no such thing and said as much, I was ignored). Throughout it all the Girlie was happy. One of her big bugbears in the last week is being told off for interrupting Tilly and I talking, now she had the ability to interrupt whenever she wanted and stop Tilly talking to me, one happy Girlie. A frosty session at the park followed. Tilly asked why I hadn't said I wasn't doing what she asked before I left, I pointed out what had happened and said I was trying to avoid that. Tilly accepted that there would have been much discussion, not all of it positive, but that she would have probably come around to my way of thinking eventually. I didn't add, perhaps I should have done, that it was inappropriate to have an hour's discussion before taking our daughter swimming.

We came home, had lunch, and then I took the Girlie to the swimming baths. We had a decent time. She can swim underwater well now and treads water like a pro. I taught her to dive for a bit (scissor jump and sitting dive) and then she went on the big slide a few times. Tilly was working on our return and then made tea, which was nice.

No caption necessary.
I'm still a bit shell-shocked by the whole affair, if I'm honest. I suspect I am being a bit unreasonable on some level but I fail to see why we have to use the crossings on our street on a Sunday (or most days actually) as it's not really that busy at all. I use the crossings on main roads and in town because, well, it's busy and it makes sense. I think our road must have been really busy at one time in the past, it doesn't seem so now, and that's why we have two crossings on it (though both owe much to the flow of human traffic to the fair in the autumn, so perhaps that is the reason).

Anyway, deadlines approach and Tilly is now rushing to keep up. As soon as this one passes it's into the next book (recent articles have prevented her writing that) and potentially more articles. She's already planned the spending of any monies earned on a wood-burner, redecorating the dining room and living room and re-roofing the back of the house.

So I'm confused. She clearly wanted to spend time together with me. But not too much? Oh, I don't know.


Sunday, 15 May 2016

Update

Yay for Eurovision!

I thought the standard of acts was improved over last year but
that it lacked the insanity and whimsy that I come for.
Busy weekend, two parties to attend and I have been mugged by a massive cold. Possibly just really bad hayfever, difficult to tell. Much stuffiness of head, bunged up nose and occasional nose-bleeds. Also, Eurovision. Okay, it was a tad lacklustre (not quite as bad as last year where Tilly completely checked out, but not great either) where the best act was the joke one in the interval where the hosts did a take on Eurovision songs that was probably what we tuned in for, to be honest. I rather like the style of the whole thing, and watching Justin Timberlake sort of not get it was awkward to say the least.

Me? Angry? Like Little Bunny Froo-Froo impotently angry?

Pshaw, surely you jest!
I don't think I've kept people up to date. There's a trip on the morrow, you know how much I love those, that has been mostly organised by Harry - who is brilliant - but that means that now I worry about it all working as Harry was under more stress than I. There was an episode earlier in the week where I got angry after getting an e-mail sent by my boss that was... well, a bit paranoid. I got angry about it, and may have broken one or two doors by slamming them (as well as scaring Alice and Harry). Still, the interviews resulted in a good appointment who looks like being a good member of the team.

It's kinda funny, the choice was betwixt Chinese and Indian.

Remember how Tilly hates it if I smell of chili and spices
after hot food? I do. So, she would prefer curry. Now, why do
suppose that was the case?

No, I did not think of it this way on the night.

It does rather explain the lack of physical contact (we sat on
opposite ends of the sofa with a table between us) and the
utter lack of contact on retiring to bed. Well, as long as that is
not explained by the fact that I'm a leaking, cold-ridden,
unkempt mess, at any rate.
No real contact with Tilly and Friday ended up with me taking an early night rather than having an ale that was given me by one of the people I know at work - who had been concerned with my anger on the Tuesday (for that was the day it was) and saw a chance to repay my very erratic and occasional gifts of ale (when I find a nice one I tend to buy for others whom I know appreciate the odd ale). So, the ale gift was nice, but the lack of chance to drink it was not. I also gained some nice thoughts from students off on exams, which was nice. Anyway, yes, no contact, then cold on Friday. Party on Saturday when I was rather ill resulted in me being grumpy with the Boy, but he and his sister had great fun with other little people and Tilly mingled with her friends and I had a chat where I scared the crap out of a fellow teacher, so that was different. Evening of Eurovision marked the most time that Tilly and I have spent in the same room without anyone else there since... well, last Eurovision I guess. We had a take-out curry (I couldn't really taste it) and I attempted to snuggle toward the end, Tilly was indifferent and, I suspect, didn't notice. However, I can't complain too much, she was almost romantic about it in advance on a couple of occasions. Keep in mind that I have rather assiduously 'pulled back' after being told to be more obvious again, so I don't know.

Seen plenty of lovely clothes about but not actually bought anything. We're really tight this month for some reason (I haven't budgeted it this tight) so I have no spare cash again. We're getting air-bricks put in to try and combat our damp (I recall this not helping where we used to live, but a builder said we needed them and he's the husband of one of Tilly's friends so I guess his opinion is more learned than anything I could bring to bear).

Tilly doesn't like playing chess with me: apparently I win too
often and it makes her resent playing.
Having taught the Boy chess it turns out that he loves playing it - teaching it to his sister this weekend. I've now taught him Risk (may be a bit beyond him yet) and he would like to learn Stratego. Though that is still at work so we'll have to see how we go. I also learned a dear friend is back in public on her blog, so that was nice too.

In other news, Tilly is ill again - her back continues to cause immense pain without sign of ending and her iron levels are low again (taking supplements causes her to feel bloated and the tablets prescribed to deal with that make her ankles swell, her mouth go dry and her teeth to hurt - all of which are indeed listed as potential side-effects). Her work continues to bring in much respect etc so she's off with the narcissist at the moment.

And that's about it.


Monday, 9 May 2016

Life is what you get when all else fails

Watching Grayson Perry's All Man on Channel 4 because Alice saw it and thought I'd be watching it as well. Left alone while the family was away over the weekend, Alice was just ready to talk the ears off anyone who'd listen this morning. I even got up on time and got some work done in the morning. Not enough, not what I'd hoped, but some.

Tilly had a good day. The Boy was seduced by a free painting session in a model shop and it has clearly grabbed him in a strong way. This evening he played soldiers in the garden with me, which was fun, and surprising. He clearly and keenly wishes to paint, to engage and to focus on the models and the gaming world calls to him because, like me, he's no fan of people. I read The Animals of Farthing Wood and he wants to paint aliens and suited space marines, seems pretty similar.

However, she's booked up, Tilly, with work and whatnot until 20th May. No more evenings off, she already regrets the last one - the hour or so we shared - as it has meant that there is so much she has to do now. I can relate. But she is still being productive, firing off articles and reading for her book and preparing to launch a website with her narcissist. I'm struggling to extricate myself from an online game that I am now severely holding up. I didn't really want to get involved in the first place and did so out of a misguided sense of being a good friend, I regretted it instantly and now regret it more.

That's it.

Sunday, 8 May 2016

Clothes Maketh

It's the design on the white t-shirt here, but with a
grey background (the design is in white). It's even
Fairtrade cotton so it's sustainable and part of
being a good global citizen. And it's £3. So very
tempting.
Today we had my father and his wife up and it wasn't as bad as it could have been. I wore my Star Wars t-shirt and got complimented about it whilst shopping too, which was nice, and ruminated on why I wouldn't buy and wear a lovely cotton top from Aldi because it has a heart design on it. Actually, I love the design, but I'm not sure I could get away with it at home, otherwise I would buy it and wear it because it is lovely. But I didn't, and I received a compliment from a member of staff at another shop, so I shan't worry about it too much. The staffer was a bloke. But we don't worry about that. Been a hot day too, so going out for a walk in the sunshine was a good call.

Yesterday I was down in London for some examination training and it was another very hot day, I finished early and tried to go to the gallery in Trafalgar, but I wasn't really in the right frame of mind or something. I remember clearly having the thought: "You don't deserve to be here" - so that may be my current mood, who knows. No, the important thing wasn't London, not even having a swift half at the Harp, no, the important thing was when I got home. Tilly and I shared an Indian take-out and sat in the same room whilst we ate. There was no DVD, no computers and no books. We sat and we chatted for a whole 45 minutes before retiring to bed, where we talked for about 15 minutes and then that was that. We spent a whole hour together, alone.

Beyond that, there's been nothing else. I've failed to get any work done, that's about it.