Meltdown, PEM or what?

So I started this blog a little while ago, wrote a couple of posts and then became quiet. Not because I lack ideas for posts but because my health went bad and, more importantly, I’m so confused about a couple of things and didn’t feel ready to share them. Well, I still don’t know if I’m ready but I’m so frustrated from being silent about it. However, I’m so grateful for all the amazing blogs I recently started reading. I need to read stories about autism and sensory overload for many reasons since most people around me tend to have no clue what I’m talking about if I try to discuss it.

Right now I am trying to understand my sensory overloads from different perspectives since there seems to be a number of reasons why I keep experiencing it. One of them is very different from what I thought this blog was going to be about but I want to bring it up. I’m talking about ME, myalgic encephalomyelitis. Some people claim ME doesn’t even exist, some people claim it does. I don’t know what to believe but I do know for sure that the Post-Exertional Malaise (PEM) I experience is very real. The interesting thing is that even though the symptoms in PEM may look like the symptoms in a meltdown I experience a difference. It’s hard to describe it but a meltdown means that words can’t be pronounced, crying, screaming (if it’s really bad) and such an overload that I’ll do anything to get some kind of release. It’s a traffic-jam in my head. PEM, on the other hand, means higher body temperature, feeling like I’m having a flue, more physical pain, almost fainting, a sore throat, having to take my contacts out since my eyes hurt and a specific kind of headache. An interesting difference is that the meltdowns I’ve had since I was a kid while the PEM started a couple of years ago. These descriptions aren’t complete since it’s the first time I actually comparing them, but it’s a start. When both a PEN and a meltdown happens, me sensory sensitivities are heavily increased and this has confused me a lot.

So, this was a start. Trying to figure out what is what isn’t going to be easy but I need to understand.


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