I feel incredibly sad (also, how to have casual sex if you’re autistic)

I have a feeling that I already made a post with this title but then I can’t come up with anything else – I do feel incredibly sad.

The last couple of days I was so focused that it was almost like being in a trance – I didn’t do anything except of thinking what to write on my blog. I barely ate, but I still had drinks of course. It was really strange, but then, I guess, I wouldn’t write those posts about sexuality and testing men. It feels strange to me, I feel old and unattractive which is possibly slight exaggeration but then that’s how it feels, like it’s young girls who know how to test guys when in fact they have no idea.

But the truth is, as I’m 44 I have life experience. I had time to work all that out. I mentioned here, a few posts away that guys always treated me well – ok, I do have a couple of bad experiences too, that I’d rather not discuss here, at least not now. I may come back to it a bit later, I don’t know. But the thing is that after every negative experience I reflected on myself so that the same thing never happened to me again. And it did not. So my general experience is that guys always treated me well and when I wrote that in the other post, I wasn’t even thinking about the negative ones, I kind of forgot about them. Only later I realised that yes, I had a few bad experiences, but they didn’t traumatise me, if that makes sense?

And because I’m not traumatised, I can enjoy guys company and take time to get to know them instead of worrying whether that particular man is going to treat me well. That’s what I wish every woman can experience, autistic or not. And to get there you need to focus on positives. Try to become friends with guys, if possible, those from your work or university, try to see things from their perspective and understand their jokes. If you know a nice guy who you don’t fancy, ask him for dating advice. He may tell you things that other women don’t know. Like for example that, yes, men want to have sex with any woman if they’re single but they would still prefer to meet the woman of their dreams and have sex with her instead.

I sometimes think, how come I can’t see things from other people perspective (that’s what my diagnostician, Oriana Morrison-Clarke said) but then, when I was at the university, where there were plenty of men around, some of them would come to me for dating advice? Possibly I focus on men perspective more? I don’t know. But those men wouldn’t come to me for advice if I was a bad listener.

The last couple of days I wasn’t playing Redecor and didn’t do any patterns. I somehow feel like I can’t do them again, like if I’m not allowed. It’s a strange feeling. Why would I not be allowed? It doesn’t make any sense. Possibly I’d get back to it later, when I fully recover after the trance that I’ve been through.

I didn’t reach out to John (The Boyfriend) yet and I don’t know if I should do that or not, or possibly not yet. I managed to shake off that feeling a weight loss ad with his surname gave me (https://autisticandme.com/2022/01/19/were-act-on-our-instinct-when-were-in-danger-notifications-again/) but still, I don’t know what to do. I still love and fancy him. He may not be the best communicator in the world but overall he’s the best guy that ever happened to me. I do hope he reads my blog and doesn’t mind that I revealed both his first name and surname here – although not in the same post, so it’s not like I revealed his identity.

I feel really tired. I have overdue bills to pay for my mum’s medication. I will do it tomorrow I suppose. I could not even do that when I was in that state of trance, even though it would only take a few minutes.

I’m not sure if I will continue writing about relationships and sexuality. I think I already said what I had to say, but if someone contacts me about their difficulties with men, I’ll try to help.

I think the most important thing for us, autistic females, is to remember that men test women, whether they are interested in proper relationship or just casual sex. And if women fail those tests men will disrespect them. The easiest way to fail a man’s test if you’re looking for a relationship is to become easily impressed with his efforts and think that they mean he’s really into you.

Regarding casual sex – I made a post a few days ago about that and said that we, autistic women should not engage in casual sex because even if we tell a man we don’t want a relationship, he will still not believe us, will test us using hints and if we don’t respond to them the way he expects, he will think we’re lying and will disrespect us. However, I came up with solution for that too (well, we should have the same chances in life as non autistic women, shouldn’t we?).

This will best done over emails or texts, not in person: as you discuss your expectations with a man you’re considering for casual sex, first remember to tell him that you don’t want to feel pressured and you may change your mind on the day. Second, explain that you’re autistic and therefore you don’t get hints easily. Tell him you are aware that men use hints to test women real intensions, even though the woman already stated she’s not interested in a relationship. Tell him not to do that on you because due to your autism you won’t be able to respond in a way that he expects. You already stated you’re not into a relationship and he needs to take that on a face value. And then say: And, as you are not interested in a relationship with me, my true intentions should not really interest you, should they? And anyway I have no ability to haunt you afterwards so be a man and don’t play any silly neurotypical games with me.

Those words sound a bit harsh but this is how you have to talk to a man from time to time to get him to behave. At the same time you will be doing your bit for the autistic community because people really don’t understand.

Stillness

That will be just a quick post, possibly without any patterns, but I will see how I feel later.

I just got back from Weymouth, it was a great trip and the town is beautiful but it was also all very emotionally intense. As a result of all my thinking I realised I need to finally do something about that whole Home Group drama. As I mentioned here already so far I didn’t even hear ‘I’m sorry’ from them. It was very difficult decision to make. In a way it feels like moving on may be a better option, but then did I really move on? If I did, I wouldn’t blog about them.

But also, it’s not just about me. It is about every single autistic person in the world and also non autistic people who ever become victim of workplace bullying.

However, making this decision took a lot of effort. Both emotional and mental and now it feels like I need to rest. I need to do nothing for a bit as, if I continue going after what I want now, I’d end up alienating every single lawyer that I approach.

This is another difficult thing about being autistic: my instinct is telling me to act now, go after what I deserve and what I should have got ages ago, by my life experience is not consistent with my instinct.

What makes the matter even more complicated is that in some situations, when I really want something, I know exactly how to get it. Possibly even better than an average neurotypical person. That usually happens just at the very beginning of my pursuit. And then, as I continue to go after what I want, I end up alienating people and running even that bit that I managed to get at the beginning.

An awareness of the fact this is caused by autism is very important but still it feels so unfair that I have to take a break when I feel like ready to act.

I feel emotional

I’m back in my accommodation after spending most of the day outside. I had loads of walks, ate cake for lunch and drank large glass of wine in the afternoon. It was a good day overall. I may go out later again to get something to eat but it depends on how hungry I am. Skipping meals may become my new hobby, because, why not? It may not be the healthiest choice but it’s probably still much better for me than overeating.

I feel very emotional suddenly. It is said that we, autistics, can’t access our emotions easily and this may be true, however we need to remember that I am unable to imagine how it is when one can access them. No one ever explains that, it’s just assumed that it’s normal, healthy thing and we should be able to do it.

I must say here that my upbringing wasn’t very conductive of me being in touch with my emotions – my house was totally filled in with my dad’s emotions – when he was unhappy, we knew that and there was no space for anything else. I did hear more than once that I must have been abused as a child to be the way I am, but it is much more complicated than that. First, I am autistic, I will always be different, no matter what. Second, even though my dad wasn’t easy to live with, I understood even as a child that his behaviour was due to his mental health problems and it made it easier for me to cope with.

But there was something about his emotions that made me feel like there is no space for mine. If he was angry, I knew that even if he didn’t speak with anyone and was in his bedroom the entire day. That by itself made me feel like I’m not allowed to feel my own emotions, there was no space for them in the house.

Can you call that abuse though? The fact that my dad was angry by itself was not an abuse but it felt to me like one. After moving out from my family home I continued living my life feeling like there’s no space for me feeling the way I feel or wanting what I want. Those two things, feelings and wanting were not allowed. Reaching out for what I wanted was not allowed either, or at least not in a healthy way.

Now, being here, I think about it a lot. The fact that I rejected booking from live in care provider really made me realise that I need to put myself first finally. But how do I do that if I can’t access my feelings easily?

Even though I don’t normally know how I feel about something, I can ‘act it out’ in a suitable environment. Acting out is not always a bad thing. It really doesn’t have to mean screaming. It can mean that, for example, I presume that live in care job will be good fit for me because I really liked it 10 years ago, but then I get offered a booking and I suddenly realise I don’t want to go. This is acting out my feelings. This is also why I was made to feel like irresponsible and undecided person in the past. So, who I am now it’s not all about autism, not all about my dad either – it’s about everyone who ever mentioned to me that I need to be different. More confident. Knew what I want and go for it. Be more like them, basically, and then my life will change.

It feels so strange now to feel all this grief and allow myself to experience it. It takes a lot of effort though. It’s good I’m here on my own.

Croissants and yoghurt (what will I eat tomorrow?)

Ok, so I’m in Portland after the first day of my training and I’m having second thoughts. That’s how it often works for me: I don’t know how I feel about something till I’m just about to do it. As I mentioned on the blog I used to really like live in care job so I thought it would be a good idea to go back to it. But then, that was over 10 years ago, I think. At the time I didn’t have my flat, I wasn’t going to the gym and probably, most importantly, I didn’t have my blog and my strange, patterned art.

Obviously, I’d never put my blog over the needs of client and I’d never discuss anything client related on the blog but the thing is, people can Google things nowadays and possibly client’s families, when they find my blog and my art, may decide I’m strange and they don’t want me. Maybe not everyone would do that but some for sure. When I applied for this job I didn’t have my art yet and the blog was just starting out, so I wasn’t really sure if I would be able to keep it (although I did pay for yearly subscription to WordPress to keep myself motivated).

I’ll see how things go, I suppose, after I am already here, but I never ever want to be in a position where I have to deny who I am just to keep a job.

Otherwise I’m confused about my ability to read hints. The hotel receptionist said yesterday that the cook is off sick with covid but she’ll ‘cook the breakfast tomorrow’. I remember she mentioned sausages. I don’t remember what she said next exactly word by word but possibly it was ‘but some people may just want croissant and yoghurt’ which for me meant that breakfast is made to order, however, she was hinting I shouldn’t be bothering her with anything complicated, but it’s ok to ask for sausages on the first morning and on the second I should be happy to just have something simple.

Something recent (it looks a bit scary, doesn’t it?)

However, when I came downstairs today it turned out that it’s buffet. More over, there was no croissants or yoghurt around. There were quite a few men in the dining room and all the sausages were gone already even though I only came 15 minutes after breakfast started being served. I managed to get hold of the last slice of bacon though, baked beans and scrambled eggs were also still there. I mean, it doesn’t matter, does it? I don’t eat sausages for breakfast at home so I don’t have to have them here but it is a bit confusing when I expect that something will happen and it then doesn’t. From all 3 choices that were mentioned the day before nothing was there. I think I’d prefer not to have any idea about what to expect at all, I would then go with an open mind. At the end (or rather, the beginning of the day) it’s just breakfast and the most important thing is that I don’t starve myself. Yet, the fact that some items were mentioned to me the day before made me expect them and I then felt disappointed that they weren’t there. I don’t even particularly like croissants, I can live without sausages and I eat yoghurt regularly so I’m not that bothered. While baked beans is actually my favourite British food and there were still plenty so I should be happy, but I was not.

That experience now makes me think whether the advice on telling autistic people what is going to happen so that they can get mentally prepared is the right one. I feel quite anxious now about not being able to get croissants and yoghurt tomorrow! Strange, isn’t it?

That’s what the receptionist said: sausages today, croissants and yoghurt tomorrow and the sausages weren’t there today so croissants and yoghurt won’t be there tomorrow either. Nothing else will be there either – I can’t help but that’s what I think. I know it’s not true but that’s how my autistic instinct is interpreting the situation and it is rather stressful!

I’m in Portland!

I finally got in! At 8pm, which is 6 and half an hour after I left home. I had a little stopover in Bath Spa as my train from Swindon was delayed and I missed my connection to Weymouth by 3 minutes! I had to wait 2 hpurs for another train. As annoying as it was, it made me realise I’d cope. I coped with a journey in unknown territory, in the evening (Google map was a real help) so I’ll cope with work. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

The hotel I’m staying in is ok, a bit basic but I wouldn’t mind it, however the mattress on the bed is probably 20 years old. It reminds me of the beds we used to have in my first student dorm at the university in Łódź. It gave me back pain very quickly, so I am glad that I’m only staying here for two nights. And I really hope that the place in Weymouth will be better.

Mind you, what is with the mattresses that so many hotels can’t get it right? They pay so much attention to how bathroom looks like or what they serve for breakfast but mattresses are poor so often that during some of my travels I had to take painkillers for backpain. Mind you, I get back pain quite easily, but still.

The Friend told me yesterday that she can’t look at some of my patterns. The more colour and repetition the more difficult she finds it. I am quite surprised, I can look at them perfectly fine. Well, I guess if I couldn’t, I wouldn’t be able to do them in the first place.

That’s what I did in a cafe in Bath:

And now I guess it’s time to have a shower and try to get some sleep. Keep your fingers crossed for me. It will not be easy at all on this mattress.

Work training (and dodgy Booking.com host)

Finally I’m going for my work training next week. The training is in Portland which is a small town in Dorset and the closest train station is Weymouth. It takes place on Tuesday and Wednesday so I have to go there on Monday as I wouldn’t be able to get there on Tuesday morning, it is around 4 hour journey. I am quite excited I must say, finally being able to start a job and I’m really glad I chose live in care over working in a care home.

As I suddenly got Booking.com discount code for my email yesterday, I had this idea: why not stay in Weymouth on the way back for a night or two. Probably two as I noticed, if I only stay somewhere for one night, I end up doing loads of running around and not much relaxing. The Boyfriend really likes Weymouth so I asked him if he can join me, even though it’s a bit tricky as he’s having some major home improvements being carried out right now. He said it would be nice to go but he can only confirm closer to the time so I thought, as the discount code runs out today, I’ll book double room as it will be similar price to a single room without a discount code.

I don’t like staying in hotels, I prefer guesthouses, B&B, hostels and apartments. Hotels feel so impersonal to me. I didn’t really have many choices for a smaller budget but I found a guesthouse that was offering double room for 106 pounds for two nights. The same room for a single person was 80 pounds and what I think I should have done would be to book for a single person and then say that my partner may join me but he’s not sure yet and I’ll confirm later.

But it felt to me that if I do that, The Boyfriend won’t be able to come. You could say it’s magic thinking but for me it makes more sense to say that I imagine that I live in a system where everything is connected, so if I don’t make space for The Boyfriend, he won’t be able to come.

Just a few minutes after I confirmed my booking I received a long email from the host explaining all his rules and stating that if I have any request, I need to contact him directly as he sometimes don’t get the emails sent through Booking.com. From the general tone of the email I had the impression that he’s a bit fed up with Booking.com but obviously doesn’t have any other choice than to be on the website. I found this communication a bit unusual but also quite refreshing and what I did was, I contacted him on the email provided to ask if I can change the booking to one person only and then change it back to two when my partner knows if he’s coming or not.

I even stated in my email that I found his direct communication really refreshing. Oh well…

I didn’t get response to that and after a while I started wondering if I didn’t make a mistake by contacting him directly. If something goes wrong it will be like I don’t have any evidence.

The booking was non refundable but I had three hours to cancel it, so I did after two and half hours. And then, guess what, the host answered my email almost immediately! That was a bit strange already but then the words he used were really scary: ‘It’s really quiet next week. Why don’t you call when you know what you need?’ And I thought, yes, right, I’ll go there and he will be sexually harrasing me. Or the room won’t be ready. Or he will not be in at all. I don’t know, it all become obvious suddenly to me he’s doing something dodgy and I didn’t want to have anything to do with him any more. So I ended up booking a single room somewhere else. The Boyfriend won’t be able to come, I don’t think. I’m much more spontaneous than he is and I wouldn’t want to go away during the time when I had work being done around the house – at this time you just want to be in to make sure that everything is being taken care of and to resolve any emergencies.

I do wonder though if neurotypical person would react differently to that first email that the host sent me? I suppose taking it on face value was a bit naive, but then I am naive, I suppose. Autistic people are naive. But somehow I don’t end up being taken advantage of (except of the fact when the mortgage advisor applied for a mortgage for me behind my back) and a lot of autistic females complain about exactly that. I guess what I do is, I behave naively but as soon as I see the slightest sign of someone treating me like if they want to take advantage of me, instead of being understanding and supportive, I back off. I guess my naivity is part of my coping strategies. I don’t know why not everyone can cope the same way though.

My flat

At the moment I have ideas for at least 3 posts:

Whether IT really is a good job for autistic people (spoiler alert: I don’t think it is)

Why I needed to see how the testing nipple looked like on my gas meter before calling my gas supplier

How I was sectioned in 2019

And, obviously, the question about autism that Professor Baron-Cohen got absolutely wrong.

Well, that’s 4 actually. Never mind, let’s not focus on this minor, little detail.

Oh, and why I couldn’t sleep well last night (ok, that’s a short one: because after two days of hibernating myself I started feeling in the evening that I can live my life again. The heating was back on and, only at 21.30 I realised I didn’t hear any noise from downstairs since after neighbours’ kitchen ceiling has been taken off. Funny thing, isn’t it, when I hear them, I get so focused on the noise, and when the noise is not there any more I fail to notice it. Obviously if the situation was normal, I mean no problem with a testing nipple, I would have noticed it for sure. It’s just strange that I didn’t.

For now, however, I want to talk about my flat as today is the anniversary of me moving in. The anniversary of exchanging contracts was actually a few days earlier, probably on the 2nd – you see, I’m not really obsessed with dates. I also didn’t even think to post about it around the time – I guess I’m also not focused on anniversaries.

So, at the beginning of 2013 I was lucky enough to receive larger sum of money from an unusual source (it was all legal though), I was working full time in Reading at the time, which is a city closer to London, therefore rather expensive. I was also doing a university course in maths, so I was quite busy. However, when the course finished, I started looking for ‘a place to call home’ otherwise called buying a property. In Reading I could only afford a small studio, somewhere far away from the centre, and I quickly decided I didn’t want to live like that so I decided to move. Quickly enough I decided I would go to Swindon. It was much cheaper but close enough to both Reading and London. One day I got on the train to have a look around (I never been to Swindon before), I didn’t like the town centre too much but I loved Old Town and Queens Park, and I thought, I’m moving.

I started looking for a nice, slightly larger one bedroom flat, but this one popped up in my search, with an extra bedroom, utility room, small private garden and the price just slightly higher than what I initially wanted to pay.

And this way, I’m a homeowner. I suppose I was really lucky to get this flat and have my mortgage paid off before I was 42 (just a month before I was sectioned), especially with all the troubles I got myself into due to what happened in Home Group. The flat is by no means perfect and I find it irritating that I’m constantly aware of my downstairs neighbours, but then it has large windows and there’s nothing outside to block the light so it’s really bright inside, which I love. It also has a modern kitchen, although not really to my taste.

I am quite sensitive to how space around me is organised and this flat is not ideal, with long hallway and larger living room (I’d rather have small living room and separate dining room instead) and a tiny bathroom, however I am fully aware that with smaller budget like mine my choices would be limited and it’s possible that I wouldn’t even be able to find a place that would have the layout I really want and it was as bright as my current one.

So I am not complaining, I do appreciate what I have, even though at times I really don’t think I’m cut out to be a home owner.

However, I don’t know what it is: whether the layout, or possibly that ridiculous dotted carpet that I can’t make myself to replace as it’s too much trouble, or the fact that coming to Swindon was all a bit random really, or maybe just because I’m not British so I think I don’t belong to this country… I really do not know, but I don’t feel like this is my home at all. I feel like my flat it’s just a box where I store myself.

Possibly, if I saw it as home, it would be easier for me to relax, to keep it clean and to book repairs? I really don’t know, but I’m wondering if other autistic people feel the same way about where they live. And then, what about neurotypical people – is it easy for them to call their properties home? As I said, sometimes I really wish I could get a grant to research neurotypicals.

I’m not cut out to be a home owner

I’m sorry, but that’s how I feel. After a gas engineer vist, who was, I presume, form the council, it turned out that my gas meter testing nipple is broken and therefore the meter can’t be switched back on. I didn’t even know that meters have testing nipples! More over, the lady I was speaking with from gas supplier customer service didn’t know that either and was asking me multiple times what is wrong with it. She would then call somebody else and come back to ask if maybe it’s a valve? If valve and testing nipples are the same thing, then yes. All I know is that I was told it was a testing nipple.

After like 50 minutes of this back and forth conversation I was finally told they can put smart meter on. I’m like, but I had a visit from an engineer a few weeks ago about smart meters and was told that I can’t have one for the gas as it’s outside of the property and too far from it. Did they not have this on the system?

I’m not capable of that, seriously. If I wasn’t oversensitive to cold I’d just give up on the luxury of having a heating and ability to take a bath. I have an electric shower, that will do. I mean, not now because I’m not taking my clothes off in this cold, I’m just saying, if I was like The Boyfriend, who likes being cold, I wouldn’t do anything, that’s how much this type of communication is putting me off.

Someone is going to call me within 3 hours to make an appointment. Hopefully they won’t offer me one in a few weeks, I don’t know what I would do. I mean, I suppose I can go to the gym for a shower, that should be ok as I barely use it to exercise, and will certainly not be doing that before my heating is back on.

I think I’m just going to have a breakdown now, then someone can come and section me, place me in a heated hospital, give me food and all the support and only let me out after the meter has been replaced.

When I was on an autism support chat a few weeks ago, there was a lady there who said that she’s registered as having communication difficulties with her gas and electricity supplier, mine just told me they don’t have anything like that. Anyway, would that work? I can communicate very clearly in similar situations, I just get terribly put off when I have to speak with somebody who don’t know what they are doing.

Mind you, the lady from customer service was actually very nice, it’s not her fault that she hasn’t been sufficiently trained and was just being used to pass on messages between me and someone from a technical department (who, my understanding is, also didn’t know anything about testing nipples).

If I’m in similar situations, I just want to give up. It’s much less frustrating.

I feel like going on strike

Well, I was in a good mood for a few days already so now it’s time to be low. Btw I do not think that means I’m bipolar (which is my second diagnosis): I didn’t overspend, I didn’t get drunk, I didn’t even overeat (ta da!), I also didn’t make any strange plans regarding my future and I believe my insight was good. I think I really was just in a really good mood, possibly elevated slightly due to the use of therapy lamp.

Why I’m feeling bad now, then? Because I keep getting this idea that I’m not meant to have only one job: whatever I choose to do I’ll be running into trouble. It will either be too much contact with people and too much politics (like in a care home), sensory issues (in a warehouse), too boring (cleaning) or not enough time for myself (live in care). I do realise that other people don’t have some of those challenges and also cope better with those that they do have. Perhaps they don’t loose sleep (like me know) over the fact that they can’t find an ideal job and just get on with what they have, as long as it’s good enough.

One of my problems is that, when I have been somewhere for a bit of time, I start focusing on negatives and find it very difficult to move on from that type of thinking. Over the years I learned that making decisions based on this is not good to me and it’s much better to be logical and stay in a job because it is, in general, ok. However, what is really happening is, the fact that I force myself to be logical doesn’t mean the negative thinking will go away – no, it will stay with me and slowly eats me away, until one day I get sacked (oh, ok, that only happened once).

I don’t know what to do about that. It seemed I was getting ok with the fact that I need to have at least two jobs, that I can alternate, but now it seems to me like it’s a sign of failure, something that no one would understand, let alone support.

Gig economy is supposed to be bad for us, that’s what we are told, isn’t it? And yet, now, I need to put myself in a situation where I purposefully reject the idea of having permanent job, with all it’s benefits, to protect my mental health. Other people don’t need to do that and yet their mental health is good.

I really do not think that’s fair.

Good quality sleep (contains app recommendation)

This post is meant to be informative so I will really try to refrain from mentioning my parsnip muffins (that are btw all eaten now) or any other healthy muffins, my childhood, my mum, my alcoholic brother (I’d really like if he stopped drinking, but somehow I can’t even imagine him being sober), Polish Christmas traditions, pierogi, SAD lamp or The Friend.

I’ll also try not to mention Home Group in this post, although it’s them that caused me my first, stress and insomnia inducted psychosis. So yes, good quality sleep is very important, but poor sleep is still better than no sleep at all, please remember it.

It is said that autistic people don’t sleep well and I certainly believed that as my problems with sleep were with me as long as I remember. My parents would make sure I’m in bed by 9pm but very often I was still awake at 1am, and that was when I was a child! It was also very difficult for me to nap during the day, although it would happen occasionally.

When I was put to do night shifts at work for a few weeks I could barely get any sleep during the day. I’d thought I’d get used to it but the second week was even worse than the first: in total I slept 14h during the entire week, I felt partly unconscious and had to go to GP for sleeping tablets.

After my second psychotic episode I started looking for ways to improve my sleep. Initially I found a program based on sleep restriction, which was available on the NHS but I wouldn’t be able to take it due to my mental illness history, which was a relief really as treating my inability to sleep with restricting sleep even further felt even worse than pulling teeth!

And then I found an app called Sleep School created by dr Guy Meadows, a sleep physiologist from London. The app is based on acceptance and commitment therapy and doesn’t requite any sleep restrictions, more over, dr Meadows advises to stay in bed and rest if you wake up in the middle of the night.

I reluctantly signed up and started doing all the exercises. It felt really weird at first, how observing what my senses are telling me was supposed to help me with insomnia? But somehow it worked. I started seeing first results after around two weeks: falling asleep was getting easier and easier and after a few months I was able to fall asleep within 3 minutes (down from 2-3h). I got slightly disappointed later when I found out dr Meadows stated falling asleep quicker that 15 minutes could mean we’re overtired.

Mind you, I fall asleep without using the app now, just practicing techniques I learned from it, and after a while they got so automatic that I don’t even think about using them. One could say I retrained my brain.

I still had problems with falling back to sleep if I woke up around 2-3 hours before my alarm was due, so, again, following the knowledge from the app (even a little bit of light is damaging to our sleep) I decided to try eye mask and that reduced number of early morning awakenings, but didn’t fully eliminate them.

Mind you, I wasn’t even actively using the app any more and some of the courses were still not done. So I went back to it to find out what to do to fall back asleep and it turned out we have to try noticing body meditation again, which is exactly the same techniqueto get us to fall asleep in the first place. I tried it yesterday and it worked! I fell back to sleep at 4am, even though my alarm was set for 6.

Since adding eye mask to my sleep routine I consider good sleep to be 9h, no kidding, I slept 9h on number of nights, even though I wasn’t overtired. 5h is now poor sleep, while it was almost standard before using the app.

As I said the techniques provided by the app are a bit strange at first and I really didn’t see how they would improve my sleep but I was determined as I wanted to avoid another psychotic episode and being on meds to the end of my life. And, surprisingly, it worked!

Dr Meadows warns us that insomnia cannot be fully eliminated and therefore I wonder if I ever get to a point when I don’t need to use sleeping tablets even if I’m under severe stress. Possibly not, but still, I am suprised how well it works for me when I’m not under stress and how easy it is to switch back to the techniques learned when stress is eliminated. I’d really recommend everyone to use this app. It can be life changing.

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