Sensory issues affect my life. No, I can’t turn them off. I can try to improve them, but it’s not possible to turn them off. Sensory processing disorder affects my sense of taste, touch, smell, sight, and hearing. One of the hardest things about living with sensory issues is that others can’t understand what you are feeling.
People in my life have told me to “suck it up”. I try to, but it’s just not possible. I once had to go on a stage to perform and someone said to me “suck it up.” I tried to do that, but the stage lights were so bright. I could see them even looking at my music director. I had to sit in the audience for a while too. I didn’t want to put my earplugs in because I wanted to be able to hear my music director when she would need to talk to me.
Every time the audience applauded I winced, It sounded like gunshot to me. By the end of the performances, I was ready to go to a quiet place. When I was in the car on the way back with my teacher (who had brought me in) and I was really tired. They tried to initiate conversation with me, but I was too tired. Eventually, I perked up, and I was able to talk.
I have found ways to cope with my SPD. I tell others that I have SPD. I also wear earplugs in noisy places (when I can). SPD can make me feel very alone, having SPD can also make you feel like you are different, and can make it hard to make friends. When people you know just want to shriek, laugh, listen to loud music, and have fun, but you are bothered by the noise, it can make it difficult to interact. I’m not saying that these people that I know are bad, they just don’t have sensory issues so they aren’t bothered by noise. I take sensory breaks whenever possible and that helps.
I have Autism and Sensory processing disorder, and no I can’t turn it off. This is what it’s like to have Autism and SPD.
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