I feel drained today and the more I try to do something, the harder it gets. It feels like my wheels are spinning in the mud.
I watched a few minutes of the debate in Parliament about Brexit. The actual quality of debate was higher than I expected (maybe my expectations have been lowered by online “debate”), but the whole situation depresses me. However this works out in the short to medium term, I can see a long-term collapse in support for mainstream parties that don’t seem able to deliver on their promises and a consequent shift to the far-right and the far-left. Already Labour is basically a doctrinaire Marxist Jew-baiting party, even though historically (before Jeremy Corbyn) the British Labour Party was neither of those things (unlike some continental socialist parties). This, I fear, is the way democracies die, and you can see similar things happening, in different ways, across the Channel and across the Atlantic. Everywhere people are losing trust and hope in conventional politics and turning to extremism.
Anyway, I’m trying not to think about that, and this isn’t supposed to be a political blog. It’s just another thing that depresses me, and when something grabs my attention, the autistic part of my brain won’t stop bringing it up everywhere.
I also saw this article about negative dating beliefs. I have all six of those negative dating beliefs (five negative self-perceptions and one negative perception about dating itself). I am not dating at the moment, but it makes me feel I will never manage to get married. To be honest, if I can get a diagnosis of autism, I think it will actually boost my dating chances. From my perception of how shidduch dating (dating in the religious Jewish community) works, shadchans (matchmakers) try to set people up in a rather superficial way and certainly if you have an unusual trait or characteristic, they will try to match you up with other people with that characteristic, at least initially, especially if the trait is seen as negative. The assumption seems to be “like goes with like.” So if I have an autism diagnosis I suspect I would be likely to be matched up with women on the spectrum, which I suspect would be more likely to lead to marriage than dating the neurotypical women I’ve mostly been dating in the past. Then again, autism is arguably under-diagnosed in women, so they may not know or they may know and not admit to it, fearing it would be “bad for shidduchim” (bad for their marriage chances). Dating is hard, frum (religious Jewish) dating is very hard, doubly so when you aren’t “perfect” enough for other people.
My Dad has found out that there are companies that organise kosher holidays for groups of Jews in their late twenties and thirties and is encouraging me to go on one at some point. I think he’s hoping I will go on one and meet someone as many of the tours are specifically for singes, although at the moment I doubt I could keep up with the itinerary of an organised tour, nor do I imagine I could start a relationship with someone that way. It takes a lot for me to be able to ask someone out and I can’t see myself doing it on a tour with lots of other people. Plus, I do not like being in large groups and tend to withdraw and become unattractive. It is true that if I wanted to visit somewhere exotic, e.g. South America, Africa or Asia, where usually the kosher options would be limited, I would be better off on a tour where they can organise all that, kasher a kitchen in a hostel or whatever they do. However, I’m not really a great traveller. Although I would vaguely like to see Inca pyramids or the Grand Canyon or whatever, the thought of going through all the processes of a holiday (booking, packing, travelling) I find off-putting. Maybe it’s me being autistic again.
Stuff I did today:
- davened (prayed) a bit of Shacharit, the whole of Mincha and Ma’ariv;
- wrote a review of yesterday’s Doctor Who episode and the season as a whole that I was reasonably pleased with (for once) for my other blog;
- about ten minutes of Torah study;
- watched an episode of Doctor Who for research for my book (I feel slightly depressed by how much research I still feel the need to do even after having worked my way through all of (what survives) of TV Who);
- applied for a job (basically, just cut and pasted a cover letter and changed the job title as well as slightly editing my CV);
- added dates of birthdays, anniversaries and meetings to my 2019 diary;
- realised I’d double-booked myself onto a depression course on the same day as an autism course and tried to rearrange the latter, feeling embarrassed and stupid;
- finished reading The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome (except for some pages skipped as irrelevant to me);
- wrote this blog post;
- procrastinated and felt exhausted, listless and depressed.