Aspby's In The Family

I am 17 years old and my brother, 17 months younger than me, is "one trait short of a diagnosis." That is how my mom and I refer to it. He showes most of the signs of aspergers but has never been diagnosed. I also have a 12 year old brother with signs of apsergers. I have spent all of my time in school watching out for "Jim." Kids from his grade would come running up to me saying, "Your jim's brother right? well he just ______." Then I would be expected by them to go over and fix his problems. My parents don't really understand the dynamics i face at school because all they say is, "Don't get involved, it is his life." But how am I supposed to just walk away when kids expect me to fix everything. He hangs out with some of the same kids that I do now that we are in high school, and lots of times they laugh at him. Never to his face, but they do. Sometimes I want to just laugh along, pretend that I won't have to deal with it when I get home. But I feel bad knowing that he has no friends and likely never really will. It drives me nuts that he simply doesn't care what people think. Or that he claims not to care. I know he cares because about twice a year he will have a major melt down where he crys and screams and carries on because no one likes him, and no one will be his friend. But then the next day he goes to school with his shirt inside out and backwards and when you tell him to fix it he freaks out and says he doesn't care what people think. Parent's always claim that what he does doesn't effect you at all, but that is a bunch of crap. Every strange thing he does at school effects how people view me. I am frusturated that my life is so intertwined with his when there is nothing I can do to change it. He is unpredictable and changes his temeper and thougths on things from one minute to the next without warning, which wears on me. After 16 years of this I am wearing thin because I don't have anyone to talk to about it. Friends don't understand and neither do my parents. Plus, my dad and little brothers are both on the autistic spectrum making social dynamics within the house really really strange. I am getting to the point where I just don't like to have my friends come over. My boyfriend thinks my family is very strange and he totally doesn't understand. Often I feel like I am alone out here. I found this site after a google search and hope to use it alot to feel more understood. If anyone shares my pain please let me know. I am getting burnt out being the only "good" kid. The only good student, the easy kid that no one has to worry about. I feel like i get ignored most of the time....

theres11 theres11
18-21, F
2 Responses May 2, 2010

I understand you all. Sending all my support. For me, the hardest thing has been the rage issues. the way he speaks at my parents. He goes from depression to anger. he is never in between. And does weird stuff. Never acts normal. I wonder, if growing up in that environment affected my personality because I have problems in my relations with people. I feel hurt easily

Hi, your story sounds very familiar to me. I grew up with a younger brother w/ Aspergers back when it was a very unknown disorder. My brother was a social outcast who got a lot of attention in school because he was "the smart kid", and "the weird nerd". A lot of attention was focused on my brother and his problems... in school especially. As we got older and entered h.s. (he was 3 grades behind me but taking advanced courses - even in some of my classes), the disruption at home grew. My parents, otherwise sensible and collected people, got to the end of their rope, and the majority of the evenings after I got home from sports, were spent in my bedroom, trying to drown out all the yelling going on in the dining room, where my brother was stationed to do his homework. I, on the other hand, have always been the good kid, very self-reliant (had to be), and quiet... often times I went under the radar. I couldn't, and didn't really care, to talk to others about my brother. In fact, I had wished that they would stop asking me about him. Since they didn't grow up around him, they just saw him as the genius who would one day do something amazing, like fly to the moon. They surly didn't understand the realities of his illness, and even friends who cared would glaze over, not knowing how to respond to my insight. <br />
I intend to write more and post on this site, but I just wanted you to know that you are not alone in this, though the rage issues are something I'm not terribly familiar with. What grade are you in now? I'm 29... and though it doesn't impact my daily routine since we no longer live in the same house, I'm still living in his shadow... unfortunately he's still living with my parents, who are still beyond stressed.