Looking for a word

I was looking for the word to describe why I did so poorly on retreats, why they terrified me, why I was absolutely miserable on all of them. How they were just awful experiences for me, and the only thing I got out of them was how not to cry. How I spent them in rooms of strangers and waiting forever for figuring out how all the other people were doing things that were making sense to them.  How I wish I had known I could call my parents and have them bring me home, but I had no idea that was a possibility and no idea how to go around doing it. For a word for the explanation.

I know that word, or at least a summary of it.


But I won’t tell other people. I both desperately want to, and am simultaneously terrified to.

I don’t want to use it to explain away excuses and failures, to be a bad example, to give it a bad name.
I don’t want people to believe I don’t have a claim to it,either

There are so many times, when I am trying to explain a social thing, where I am trying to explain how my brain does not do the thing, or how I have complex work-arounds to allow my brain to do the thing, and I can’t find the word.

Or more accurately, won’t use the word.


Autism. Autistic.

It would make the explanation quicker, perhaps. But I can’t make myself use the word. Not in “real life” to physical people who actually know who I am.

It might not be the best thing, professionally, so I can understand on holding off on it there. But what about socially? When I am interacting with boyfriend’s priest friend, or his Jesuit-in-training-friend (yes, he knows a lot of priests/priests-to-be)… they are a social interaction that is not at all connected to my professional life (most of my social life is connected to my professional life, so I suppose it could be iffier there).

I am mad at myself for not using the word when I know it is there.
I am mad at myself for wanting to use the word when I am not sure if it applies to me, or if I have a real claim, or if people would think I don’t have a real claim.

I am confused and tired and stressed.

I know the word, why can’t I use it?

I know it is tied up in ideas of disability, and that I am afraid of the consequences of that. I would rather it be a personal failing of me, of me not trying hard enough, of laziness, in some ways, than being a thing I can’t do.

Shame, maybe.

I don’t want to admit I can’t do the thing.

Especially when I usually can do the thing, it just might require a lot of energy that I might not have at the time, so it is then laziness maybe.

After writing this, I read this and it is sort of related and similar and says sort of same-like-things. So it reminded me of it and I will link it here.

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