So yesterday I made a post where I suggested to Mr Henderson, the CEO of Home Group that he should consider apologising to me. If you only just started reading my blog, check for Home Group in categories, there’s only one post there where I described what happened (and it is pretty shocking).
I was brought up a Catholic and heard a lot about the need to forgive. For our priests everything can and should be forgiven and, in theory it actually makes sense as it prevents us from being stuck in the past. I made a lot of effort to forgive my dad for the fact that he wasn’t the dad I wanted to have, although, ultimately it only happened after I realised he was undiagnosed autistic and never got the support he needed for his mental health problems. Forgiving him definitely helped me to release a lot of tension, although it brought new problems with it: since I forgave him he started following me every time I was back at home. He would start with being nice but then quickly moved on to expressing his frustration with my mum and words he was using are not what I’d like to put on this blog.
For clarification, I never told my dad that I forgave him. I didn’t have any deep, or even shallow conversation with him about that, it would simply be totally impossible. I just forgave him in my heart and I felt loads of compassion for him. He must have felt it and that’s why he started approaching me. It is said autistics can sense other people feelings through their six sense and I believe this to be totally true.
However, should I forgive Home Group? That’s a bit difficult one… as an autistic I’m confused about my own feelings and also about the consequences my actions will have. I believe my story can shed light on difficulties autistics people sometimes face in employment so I don’t want to stop speaking about it. However, the procedure I learned in childhood for being hurt is to forgive every time. So that was what I wanted to do. Mr Henderson would just need to apologise.
And then what happened was, Ashley Peterson, a fellow blogger from https://mentalhealthathome.org commented saying it’s good that I’m speaking up and that comment totally change the direction of my thoughts: I realised that if I forgive it will be like I should talk a bit less about it, maybe mentioning it once in a blue moon would be ok, but definitely not too often.
That also made me realise, once again (I doubt I mention that before) that my though pattern is basically following a diagram.
This one I used as illustration for this post is simple but it can be a complicated one, like for example, when I realised two weeks ago that when I was offered a job by the Polish manager it will be best if I don’t contact her again instead of rejecting the offer.
So basically what happened at the time was: I had an interview for a job in a care company where the manager was a lovely Polish lady. After the interview she gave me a verbal offer of employment and only then she gave me an application form to fill in (in Poland application forms are not used at all so we don’t understand their importance here) and some other documents to go through. I agreed to bring it all back the next day and she said she may not be in as she manages a couple of homes.
I read the papers at home and found out that if I leave within 12 months of doing any training, at any point in my employment, I’d need to pay for that training and all of them need refreshing every now and then, although not all are done every year. And it was adding up to quite a large sum. I really didn’t like it and decided not to take the job, and, being autistic, I wanted to state that explicitly but didn’t know the contact details of the manager.
The application form stated I had to explain all gaps in employment and those have to be discussed during the interview, and because I didn’t fill the application form we didn’t discuss that, so basically the manager made an error in the recruitment process, and quite possibly she did that because we were from the same country. So contacting the head office to say I need to reject the offer could put the manager in an awkward position. I could not do that to somebody who was trying to be nice to me. At the same time trying to find the manager just to tell her why I can’t accept the job could look like an attempt to negotiate terms and conditions, while I’m sure she had no power to change.
Therefore I came to the conclusion that the best I could do in that situation was to just not contact the company again. And it was a precedent for me: the first time when I decided that not stating my intention explicitly is better than doing that.
I came to that conclusion by following a complicated diagram in my head (if I do A it will look like…, if I do B…) that I’m not going to draw here as I don’t have a sheet of paper that would be large enough. I’ve heard that non autistic people just know those things, I’m quite confused about that at times as The Friend sometimes asks me what to do in complex social situation, although she hasn’t do that for a while… probably since I started making an effort to explain my thought process to her.
Yes, so I’m really curious how non autistic person would come up with what to do in that situation. For me it was a couple of hours of thinking and then, even when I realised that not contacting the company again would be best, I still needed time to accept this decision as it just felt so strange.
Ok, so I was meant to write about forgiveness but ended up discussing how I use diagrams to come up with what to do… oh well. I’m really glad I decided to run this website as a personal blog instead of more structured and informative project. I can now allow myself for all those digressions.
I’ll come back to Home Group and forgiveness later. Btw, even if I don’t want to forgive, Mr Henderson should still apologise, don’t you think? He should have done that quite a few years ago.