Ask a person if they’re seeing someone and you’ll get a certain answer. Ask them if they love someone and you may get a different answer.
A symptom of Asperger syndrome can be not recognizing social cues. I refuse to believe a man diagnosed with Asperger syndrome would fail to recognize when he is loved.
Love is a fundamental human need. The lack of it is detrimental to one’s growth. However, love goes in two possible directions: what you take in and what you give away. One can be healthy in one direction and starving in another.
As a child, I defined love as anything that makes you safe. Mom would comfort me when things were bad. I could get my brothers to play video games with me if I felt alone. That safety was threatened when seeds of hate were planted.
When we are hurt by people we react by either causing more pain or we try to heal that pain. It is tempting to want to spread the suffering. After all, pain can be fun. It reminds us we are still alive. Feeling anything seems a good alternative to feeling nothing.
Not getting what we want hurts. Losing what we love hurts even more. I’ve spoken many things out of anger in the past. I’ve hurt those I love with words and actions. I have even failed to heal the pain of those who love me. In response, I could potentially seek to justify my behavior. Maybe everyone else is at fault? Perhaps no one is at fault and no one needs to say anything? These thoughts provide no comfort. Instead, I choose to live in the real world. Pain is real. The only thing that truly matters is forgiveness, in both directions.
Most Wanted List
School provided no safety for me. I was judged, mocked, and attacked by my peers on many occasions. I didn’t mind it so much. Any attention on me was welcome. On the other hand, it was the fact no one would come to my defense I found heartbreaking.
We protect what we treasure. Sometimes we want two things that conflict with each other and are forced to let one go. I knew many people at school who thought well of me, but they didn’t approach me. I suppose they felt being in my company would keep them from getting what they wanted. They didn’t want to lose the high opinions of the popular crowd.
I’m not used to being wanted. You won’t find many photographs of me with friends or family because few people ever wanted to take my picture. I haven’t been to many parties because I have few people who insist on me attending them. I rarely get phone calls, visits, gifts, compliments, or talked to. Even being touched is foreign to me. Any form of kindness I receive overwhelms my heart. Believe me, this isn’t what I want.
Love is more challenging to garner in adulthood. My peers aren’t very open with their emotions. Most women I know won’t regard me unless romance is involved. I’m forced to go on dates because it’s the only way available to meet new people.
Nearly everyone confuses my desire for love as a desire for a relationship. Two separate things, in my opinion. I’ve known women who fear me because they think the only thing on my mind is winning their hearts. I’ve also known women who fear me because they think I won’t accept them. Fear is supposed to keep us safe. Why should asking a gal out for ice cream be so terrifying?
Nobody should fear me. I just want to know who my friends are. I don’t dump people I learn to care for. I never stop caring about anyone. However, I can understand the fear. I’ve been dropped so many times myself.
Solace for the Soulless
I’ve met many people in my life. The encounters always seem so brief. You get asked the usual questions, hear the occasional laugh, and brace yourself for the inevitable goodbye. I long for something sweeter.
I get by with what I have. A few good friends have kept me healthy. They’ll drop by sometimes while in the neighborhood just to see my face. They’ll call me just to ask how I’m doing. They’ll share their positive feelings toward me openly. These are the most beautiful people in the world. I love them with all my heart.
Love is real. It is a living thing that grows when we nourish it and should be cared for. Even a weak love is still precious.
I can see other people desperate for connection. I know their pain. I know what it’s like to feel empty. I offer them my heart. It’s broken, but still works.