You wake up drained, feeling like your mojo has been sucked dry by space vampires from the dark side of Pluto. Your head aches, and your brain spins its wheels in the quicksand of fatigue.
“Oh God,” you murmur to yourself. “I swear, I’ll never socializing like that again.”
When you’re on the spectrum, socializing can be a lot like alcohol; sure, it can be fun when you’re doing it, but too much can knock us out of commission and take a whole day to recover from.
After all, it’s hard work; our brains are working overtime, trying to manually analyse countless verbal, visual, and contextual cues that most people process automatically. At the same time, we’re acting; we have to consciously think about what we’re doing with our faces, voices and bodies. It’s like being on stage, or on camera. Hours of that can be incredibly tiring.
Naturally, after such exertions, we need a bit of a break. Sometimes that might mean a couple of hours, but after a particularly taxing social binge, we may need to take a day for ourselves, to regroup. It’s nothing personal, and it’s not that we’re lazy or weak, any more than someone who works full time is lazy or weak for taking weekends off. And it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed of or feel guilty for.
Ultimately, we need to take care of ourselves, and part of that is knowing when to take it easy.