Topic: Holding my breath

English Alexithymia Forum > Personal Experience

Holding my breath
06.02.2019 by Butterfly

I have recently realized I have alexithymia and am working on mindfulness and emotional awareness. The first thing I noticed is that whenever I might be about to have an emotion my chest clenches and I stop breathing and it is very difficult to exhale. My breathing doesn't start again normally until the "emotion" passes.

22.02.2019 by Will1234

As an autistic I still whenever I think I feel emotion. I clench my fists and use music to get me back to my normal state (not that I am normal). I cannot identify the emotions but sometimes I experience all emotions at once and I go crazy.

22.02.2019 by Jute

I tend to clench my fists and hold my breath at the same time as a way of exerting control over myself, when I feel that I might otherwise lose it to some unspecified emotion(s) that I don't even recognise let alone understand.

23.02.2019 by Will1234

I also tend to stim when this happens though I do it all the time anyway (but I do it more frequently).i flick my hair onto my fore head, spin stuff around and clap my knees together.

24.02.2019 by Jute

I do the clapping my knees together thing too, especially if I'm sitting down, I also 'click' my fingers together.

24.02.2019 by Will1234

Same while I’m in a lesson at school I’ll click my fingers and tap knees together but I am hyper conscious now of whether people find it disturbing as I’ve learnt by previous experiences people might find it disturbing.

25.02.2019 by Jute

I tend to just disregard other people now. Even when I was at school other kids though I was weird whatever I did so there was no point in pretending that I wasn't. I was into clicking pens at the time and crossing my eyes a lot :) Nowadays it's probably easier for me, because I live alone, so I can do whatever I feel like at home, where there's nobody else to complain .

25.02.2019 by Will1234

I’m quite around my family and others (apart from Jacob my bipolar friend). But when they’re gone I’ll go mad, music full volume singing or rapping along like I’m about to die. That’s why I enjoy playing football at the weekends as I have the structure and rules of the game but I can express myself, get out any anger or internal rage (this i an emotion I can sometimes identify!) I might be feeling through my passion for the game.
This may result in some bad tackles but I just couldn’t give a crap.

I used rage and anger but I’m not sure that’s what it is. A better way of describing it is as a fire in my heart that I let go when I get passionate. I also quite like an argument or debate for the same reason.

26.02.2019 by Jute

I was never into sports, especially team sports. I did a few things like fishing, javelin, long & high jump, cycling and archery, which you can do by yourself. I turned them into sorts of competitions with myself, so that I was always trying to catch more fish or different fish, cycle further or beat my previous best scores at archery or whatever. I liked things like Chess because of the rules and structure but also the variety, in that no two games are ever the same. However I stopped playing it because I didn't really want to play other people and it's crap playing it by yourself. I quite liked to argue and debate when I was at school because I tend to look at things differently from most people so I could come up with points that they hadn't thought about.

26.02.2019 by Will1234

I like to argue with anyone even family. I like cycling and I used to go fishing but I just don’t see any point in it anymore cause it’s not like anyone will eat the fish. I enjoy going on holiday and taking out a boat to catch fish people will eat. I am a vey competitive person though and people say I can take it a bit too far when I get really buzzing for a game of anything like I’ll mock my brother because I took control of the globe in risk. I also get a bit carried away in contact sports if I let too much fire out of me at once and I can get into trouble even when playing with my brother. Like I slide tackled my friend Mitchell in a kick around and everyone said it was wrong but I couldn’t see why.

27.02.2019 by Jute

With me fishing was like a special interest. I once went fishing on all 365 days in one year, regardless of what the weather was like. Thunderstorms, snow, ice, it made no difference. Then one day it was like a little switch flicked to 'off' inside my head and I just knew that I'd never go fishing ever again. I still have my rods etc but I'll never use them again. You can't 'make' yourself be interested in something when you're not, the interest is either there or it isn't. When I play games I've always been ultra competitive, if I play I play to win.

27.02.2019 by Will1234

I don’t get it when people say it’s more important to to have fun than win. NO. I play to and why doesn’t everyone else, the reason I play is to beat my opponent no matter who it is. I get what you mean with the interest thing, it’s like with music, I will play a song on repeat for a few days and then not play it for ages. I used to listen to a lot of pop music but now, NEVER. I just don’t get that feeling of interest from it anymore.

28.02.2019 by Jute

If I play something I play it to the best of my ability. I go all out to win and if I'm playing against someone else I expect them to play the same way too. If they say that they don't really care about winning I won't play them, because what's the point? They'd only say that they could have won, if they'd wanted to, but they didn't really try, which would then make me want to beat them to a pulp.

28.02.2019 by Will1234

I hate it when people say they weren’t trying because they either were and can’t bear losing to an autistic or just don’t take games seriously. I must talk about football the most out of anyone I know because I really want to win every weekend so I will spend ages thinking up tactics to use.

01.03.2019 by Jute

People saying that they weren't trying is insulting and condescending in the extreme. They're basically saying that you're not worthy of providing them with a decent challenge, so they don't need to put in any real effort to play you. If that's not an insult I don't know what is.

01.03.2019 by Will1234

What I really don’t get is those mum jokes, they really bug me. You fucked my mum.... OK, well I hope she enjoyed it. I don’t get how they’re funny or insulting.
Yet if I come up with a genuinely funny insult on someone then it’s just pushed aside.

I also hate mumble rap because there’s no talent there, and people who judge songs on the beat. I mean sure it’s a factor but doesn’t define the song.

After the Eminem and MGK diss tracks me and Jacob both clearly saw Eminem won but everyone else was like MGK won because of how they liked the beat better when a diss track is based on lyrics.

03.03.2019 by Jute

I listened to both of those tracks just after that came out and even MGK basically admitted that Eminem came out on top.

I'm not big on humour at all, I find most of it simply stupid, and I really can't see how making insulting remarks about a 'friend's' mother is in the slightest bit funny

03.03.2019 by Will1234

I love comedy but only good comedy. I love top gear and the grand tour (they are a special interest mixed with vehicles) and I also like comedians like Josh Widdicombe ( I’m going to see him on October the 8th) but mum and nan jokes are just childish. Half the time people will show me stuff that they’ve burst out in laughter watching and I’ll just be like that’s not funny. And the other half I’ll crack up (laugh) about something and they’ll ask what it is and then not find it funny cause they don’t like stand up or genuine comedy.

03.03.2019 by Will1234

I also didn’t used to get why people laughed if someone fell over and I then thought it was the normal thing to do and the next person I saw fall over was some like 5 year old and I burst out in laughter cause I thought it was the right thing to do but everyone ended up staring at me.

03.03.2019 by Jute

Yeah, when I was a kid especially I was frequently told off for laughing at things that people insisted 'weren't funny.' But they obviously were to me, if they made me laugh. I liked Top Gear ages ago (long before Clarkson etc left it) but then I just got bored with it, because it was pretty much the same things repeated over and over again. Nowadays I don't watch TV, cos I refuse to pay for a licence, especially when there's next to nothing that I could be bothered to watch. I mostly just watch movies and short films on DVD or as downloads.

03.03.2019 by Will1234

I have Netflix so I have a wide choice but there’s barely anything I want to watch. I watched atypical and that was cool+relatable.
The grand tour is the amazon prime version of top gear with Jeremy, James and Hammond on it

03.03.2019 by Jute

Yeah, I knew about 'The Grand Tour' but I don't have Amazon Prime or Netflix. I've heard about 'Atypical' but never watched it. I did see 'The A Word' on DVD, which was okay. Mostly I just buy DVDs and download things and then take ages to get around to actually watching them, as if it's some sort of major chore. I mostly just mooch online, with headphones on listening to music.

03.03.2019 by Will1234

I listen to music while posting on here, when I have enough money I want to get a bunch of vinyl versions of my favourite albums and have them on the wall.

03.03.2019 by Jute

I have a collection of Marillion vinyl picture discs in frames on my bathroom walls. I'm not that fond of the songs but I liked the pictures :) I sold off all of my vinyl ages ago, as I wasn't playing it anymore. I did the same with most of my CDs too. MP3s are much more convenient, plus they don't take up any space or get scratched.

03.03.2019 by Will1234

I won’t be playing the vinyls but using them as a bit of decoration cause I don’t like plants apart from cacti. I am very specific with pictures too, I don’t like any pictures of views or sunsets but I have an old WW1 lord kitchener army recruitment poster

03.03.2019 by Jute

If you're going to use Vinyl as decoration it doesn't really matter what the music is like, so long as either the cover looks good or you can get it as a picture disc.

03.03.2019 by Will1234

But I want to use vinyl versions of my favourite albums like perception by NF or the Eminem show by Eminem. I don’t want albums that I don’t like, I will pick the best looking albums of the ones I like.

04.03.2019 by Jute

Oh, I wouldn't use Vinyl of records that I hated. But when it comes to bands who I do listen to, for display purposes, I'd pick the Vinyl albums or picture discs with the best pictures rather than the ones that I like listening to the most.

I don't like The Beatles for instance but if I did I certainly wouldn't put their 'White Album' on my wall, I'd choose one with a slightly more interesting cover.

04.03.2019 by Will1234

Yeh that’s what I’m going to do.
I only like certain decoration, my family like to go to the seaside for holiday but I would rather go to WW2 museums.

05.03.2019 by Jute

I had a special interest in stone circles and standing stones when I was a boy so I'd always insist that we went to places that were close to them. I wasn't interested in beach at all, so while all the other kids would be building sand castles and splashing in the sea, in their swimwear, I'd be fully dressed, with a jacket on too, reading a book.

06.03.2019 by Will1234

I enjoy swimming in the sea but only with a wetsuit on as it’s too cold otherwise and once I get out I want to go. I suppose a main reason I hate it is because my hats will be ruined, my clothes will be ruined, my sunglasses will get sand in them and worst of all I will get sand in my trainers and around my toes.
I hate that. So much.

06.03.2019 by Jute

I can't swim and I've never had any interest in sunbathing. I hate the feeling of sand between my toes or anywhere else. I was okay with going to rocky beaches when I was a boy, then I would spend hours gazing into rock pools.

06.03.2019 by Will1234

I am a bit wierd, I get called a “princess for not wanting sand on me, but I’ll then go cliff jumping or suggest something like sky diving

07.03.2019 by Jute

I think that autistics have a different view of what constitutes dangerous from 'normal' people. I've refused to do things that other people don't give a second thought about, because I considered them to be dangerous but, like yourself, I've done other things that most other people won't even attempt.

07.03.2019 by Will1234

I don’t gamble with money, I don’t think it’s worth it however I would be very confident in my ability to evade the police to commit a murder, I prefer risks I can influence.

08.03.2019 by Jute

I don't gamble. As someone once said, 'If you can't afford to lose, don't gamble.' I'd never commit a premeditated murder, which is the only way that you could plan it in advance, in such a way as to reduce the chances of ever being caught. If I ever killed anyone it would very likely be in self defence or a spur of the moment thing because someone had provoked me to the point were I completely lost control. In those situations there'd be too much evidence to avoid detection so the sensible thing to do would be to phone the police yourself and claim self defence.

08.03.2019 by Will1234

I could call the police or, open up his body and fill it with rocks and dump him in the Thames. I wouldn’t kill a person just for the sake of it but anyone who has evaded justice or killed family/Jacob then I would consider it.

09.03.2019 by Jute

If there is any motive at all, no matter how slim, you automatically become a suspect.

09.03.2019 by Will1234

Oh I know but trust me I will leave not a trace of evidence. I’m not an evil person but have the capability to dispose of a body

10.03.2019 by Jute

Nobody who plans a murder ever thinks that they'll be caught, but invariably they are.

10.03.2019 by Will1234

Jack the Ripper
Red head murderer
Zodiac killer
Freeway phantom...
I can go on but these were never identified and no correct person was put in prison.

26.04.2019 by John_Smith

I just read the last few posts. FWIW I'm going to read this thread properly before replying..

26.04.2019 by John_Smith

Should've read the whole thing before saying anything.. is there anyway to edit or delete a previous post? If not, just ignore my posts on here. Ta


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Alexithymia - emotional blindness - is a personality trait characterized by the inability to identify and describe emotions in the self. Core characteristics of alexithymia are marked dysfunction in emotional awareness, social attachment, and interpersonal relationship.
Alexithymia is prevalent in approximately 10% of the general population and is known to be comorbid with a number of psychiatric conditions. Due the inability to cope with feelings and emotions as described in psychology there are counseling services to establish mental health.
Psychologist have argued that the alexithymia construct is strongly related to the concepts of psychological mindedness and emotional intelligence.
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