Update: since posting this, I have since learnt that I have been diagnosed with Hypersensitivity syndrome.
*The title of this post was designed to grab attention, not that I actually feel like everyone thinks me important enough to judge what I wear.
From the title of this post, you’ll probably think that this is going to be a controversial , so-up-myself, snobby post. I have wished to write about clothing and Aspergers Syndrome for a while now, to try and discuss sensory issues with clothing, in a perhaps more creative way.
As somebody with Aspergers Syndrome, you could probably say that I dress in a very different way to how people my age dress. (Very formal, right?) My ‘uniform’ was either a dress or a pencil skirt, smallish heels or flats, maybe a leather jacket, and a satchel or backpack to carry all my stuff. But being out of place in this respect meant I got asked about why I dress the way I do.
You see, I dress the way I do, largely for two reasons.
Sensory issues are something that’s synonymous with Aspergers Syndrome; the inability to filter noise, the dislike of membrane foods are all examples I can think of. (I’m not sure I have ever been formally diagnosed with Sensory Issues, but I do try to block out noise, etc. ) But some clothing, and this is the only way I could think of it, “sets me off”. On some jeans I dislike the seams; crop tops seemingly move round my shoulders. Fabrics are also a problem; are there sequins without a lining? No chance I would ever wear it. It itches, and all I can focus on is the sensation as a singular thing.
The second reason is that it’s my personal preference. I see myself as being just a little bit too gangly; why would I wish to emphasis this? I can also be clumsy. What I wear is what I feel at ease in. Although apparently it may make me an outlier, but it is what makes me feel comfortable.
The way I dress is to comfort my sensory reactions; I dress the way I do for me. It may not necessarily be appropriate for the weather, but what I wear does not necessarily take that into consideration. What I wear is designed to be practical, keep me vaguely warm, keep my sensory issues at bay and not start them, and make me feel comfortable. My Aspergers is more important than conforming, because I need to feel alright.
And what I wear serves a purpose, to be honest; what I wear is practical enough to take me wherever I go. I have enough pockets to carry my essentials such as my phone and pens, my bag carries all my blog and writing stuff, and the flats or small heels are just there so I can walk decently. I would rather be able to run for the bus than totter slowly and miss it…
But when I enter the workforce, I’ll dress in the best way I can to meet whatever dress code is in force. (Whilst trying to keep the issues I’ve mentioned in check.) We’ll come to that then!