I'm a real person
I’m 33 years old this year, male.
Sifting through life, awkward socially, I realised I am different from everyone around.
The struggles I face
1. With seemingly simple things
Growing up, things like walking, going to school, and wearing clothes were difficult to me. I walk without the natural hand motion that most people have. So I learned to manually coordinate my hands with my leg movements.
I took more than a year to learn how to balance on a bicycle. I never managed to learn how to swim.
2. With clothing
Most clothing with synthetic fabrics feel horrible to me. They trap heat and my body has difficulty regulating the temperature.
3. With hunger, smells, food
I wake up with no appetite, vomiting any food.
I don’t really know how hunger feels. I have no sense of smell – smells are sometimes incredibly good for a second and disappear right after.
4. With talking to people
I cannot talk to two people at once. I avoid eye contact because my gaze is so strong that people get frightened.
My body is constantly in a fog. It is clear only around 10am in the morning and, say, 10pm at night. I have clarity alone. It seems that everything is calmer after midnight.
I do the best I can
At school, I was fleeting and just having fun, avoiding all the work and fulfilling the bare minimum. I managed to pass through normal education, from primary to tertiary. Not good, not bad, just passing.
In my job, it just seems that I am unable to meet expectations – from customers, bosses, colleagues, family. It is painful many days. But I appreciate the ups (being in a job, being paid) and understand the downs (waking up and following work schedule, sensory overwhelm).
Many times I just feel numb.
My heart is tired. My mind is sleepy.
I feel like an alien in my own skin
In appearance, I feel most people think I am ‘normal’. I’m a good masker, but a bad liar. I don’t know how to let them understand me.
I avoid all tantrums and meltdowns. I would just go home and lie down to blackout.
This has been my life.
The future seems very uncertain for me.
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Introduction: In a rapidly evolving world, Singapore’s youth face unique challenges and pressures. From academic stress to peer pressure, mental health issues to family problems, many young individuals find themselves in crisis situations. Fortunately, Project Green Ribbon (PGR) Singapore offers a lifeline in the form of Youth Crisis Homes– Green Hearth – safe havens designed