If I stop and think, I look inwards and get depressed and overwhelmed. All the things that need to be done just to maintain the status quo, not all the additional things to move ahead and get a sense of accomplishment One technique I used to employ and need to employ again are mind maps.
Just the simple process of documenting where you are and where you need to be, with all the steps required to take you there, allows one to park one’s thoughts and move on. Regardless of whether any can be knocked off, one can be assured that they won’t be forgotten. It is a way to move forward. In this way, our shared anxiety is being applied to help us rather than hinder us.
It’s really important for us to be grounded. To know what and where our happy place is.
If for whatever reason, I hit a roadblock, I can stop, take a day off and envelope myself in a game, like Age of Empires- Conquerors Edition. Enveloping oneself in a game takes all our problems and issues in the world at large into the gameplay. The only difference is while we can’t fix all these things without some sort of interaction (difficult for me), in game-play, we can overcome challenges and gain confidence. It makes us feel better about ourselves, strengthens our resolve and prepares us better for real-world challenges.
It may be with your partner, with your pets, at your home, at school, or at work even surrounded by supportive workmates. Wherever it is, if you are brave and venture away from that happy place, you know how to get back and how you can re-centre yourself. This type of thought process should eliminate overreaching anxiety or overwhelming and overreaching depression that can lead to the spiral of death (suicide).
It’s like, I can’t really swim and am afraid of deep water. I know my safe place is where I can touch the bottom with my feet. If I dog paddle or do my rescue stroke and venture into the deep water, I know even if I have a little panic, I can get back to the safe harbour, back to my safe, happy place, where it will all be okay.
Find Your Safe and Happy Place
I could talk about being verbally and physically abused as a child, but won’t at this stage, as I don’t really have any solutions for that time. I relied on God to get me through. But I don’t want to offend anyone. And while my mother is still alive, I don’t want to offend her. Other than “THAT?” my safe and happy place back then was hiding in a dark place, in a cupboard, where no one would think of looking for me
My safe place wasn’t with my parents, where, in a “good” marriage it should be. My father was physically and verbally abusive, not just to me but to my mother, younger brother and older sister. My mother loved my father, so even though she got punched, he made up to her, but couldn’t make up to us. It was our family secret that we were never allowed to talk about it to anyone outside our family.
My mother always had the means (independent funds), to leave my father for her sake and the sake of her kids, but she put the love of her husband ahead of her own safety and the well-being and safety of her children. I think generally, we have a closer bond with our mothers. Abuse towards us, in particular, is a common thread (in our stories). That abuse is with us our whole lives; it’s not something we can easily forget.
It ended when my brother got big enough to punch back. I remember that day. He felt he needed to stand up and protect his siblings. Dad did not lay a finger on us after that.
Dad had a heart attack, and became more passive in the recovery process and getting fit again. He had another outlet and a change of focus. Later still, when he got sick with Pancreatic Cancer, he became a born-again Christian when seeking out an evangelist to be healed. Unfortunately, that wasn’t God’s will for him. There is anger, which is a normal human emotion, but there is a line where you know stepping over it is a sin and wrong.
I didn’t want to be like my father. So after I got engaged to my now wife, I read a book called “Anger is a choice”, by Tim LaHaye and Bob Phillips, which helped draw that line in the sand, and helped me walk away instead of engaging whenever I felt that anger went up.
However, it didn’t help me cope, with other people’s anger toward me. As a child at school (like many other XXY life stories), I was bullied for being small, skinny and having red hair. I did learn judo. It was one of many sports and activities my mother put me in, so I could be as fit as possible. Judo gave me immense confidence. I could stand up to the bullies, and let them scrap me, knowing that every bully, no matter their size, would end up apologising, and never would attempt to scrap me again. I gained significant respect and only used the martial art in defence.
While I had the ability to stand up to my father, who after all, was like another bully, I never actually did because of what the bible says we must do. ‘Every person must respect his mother and his father’ (Leviticus 19:3).
My father never threatened my life like my mother did though. Back in 2014, I needed to get my mother into care. In part, this was my responsibility as her Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA), and it had been 18 months since her Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Her specialist had said she must be in care within 6 months. Mum is ferociously independent, and there was no way she was going to leave her home.
I was being pressured by my brother, who was threatening legal action if I didn’t comply (and in the end, took that path (for no real purpose, other than to get control), and put my mother into a lockdown ward (for which she would have no freedom)). In the end, I had to enlist the help of one of her friends who was quite methodical about the process and achieved it without fuss.
It was still up to me though to physically take mum to the rest home. Mum was so angry, vile. I had never seen her like this before. She was sitting behind me, and I was driving. She attempted to kill me by putting her arm around my neck from behind and squeezing me for all my dear life. She was so strong for such a small person, but she had the leverage. I had to find the strength from somewhere to pull her off. I don’t remember what happened to this day. Just that she never sits behind me when I drive now, and while she gets angry about coming home (or selling her house), I have to distract her to stop her agitation from being a rage that I can’t control.
Many of us feel somehow cheated when we are diagnosed. Somehow whatever we thought before about our lives was now changed because of the diagnosis. Prior to finding out, while our lives may not have been perfect, there were no grey skies ahead. The future looked bright, and our outlook on life was rosy.
This is why earlier detection through genetic testing, while in itself is not wrong, but acting on it prior to having a rational conversation with your child, when they are not old enough to understand, is wrong in my humble opinion.
I knew I was different growing up. I had limitations, and my father beat me up over time and again. It was largely due to his frustration with me, not being able to do things like sign my name like his or write anything that made sense (learning difficulties, dyslexia) or even pass an exam.
On the sporting ground, I faired considerably better. I couldn’t change in the changing rooms. I was made fun of and picked on, called names etc, and generally didn’t want to go to school, but since I was abused at home, the school was a doodle. I learnt Judo, and got good at it; I won every scrap and got “respect”. It’s hard for small skinny “boys” to get respect, but this was one way.
My divine intervention happened when a few Indian families came to live in my local area and I became friends with some who were my age. I remember, unlike the other Sikhs, in India, they were upper class, and had their own swimming pool. They were focused on studying and succeeding. Failure was not an option. The one I became friends with most was a larrikin. He didn’t wear his hair in a turban. Consequently, when he went swimming he couldn’t see, swam fast, and crashed often. He was a breath of fresh air, a laugh. Another let me copy his writing (script) style, and over the next few months, I started passing assignments. My content was still crap, but it was crap the teacher could read, so it went in the pass pile.
Nationwide exams at the end of the year, I technically failed (examiners didn’t appreciate the crap content), but I passed three exams, and I was quite happy with that and advanced a year (don’t know how). I was very young for our class (nine months, or younger). I also was sick a lot (at least half the time). Being sick gave me an opportunity to catch up on comic book reading. Was into wartime stories called “Commando” magazine’s
I only read comics, not non-picture books. Didn’t think much about it at the time. I also liked trains (the one and only hobby I shared with my father). We didn’t have a setup, so I pulled everything out of the boxes, designed complex layouts with multiple control zones, four or five locos on the same track at once with one hundred carriages, one hundred models, and cranes, that ran all over the house, from the lounge, down the hallway to the bedrooms. I was in another happy place, content, in a world of my own. Everything, all the signals, zones and trains worked perfectly first time. I got everything set up from scratch in about an hour, played for an hour and had to put everything back. Occasionally Dad would take over, not understanding the complexity, and the trains would crash, and he didn’t understand why.
On paper, Dad was an intelligent man. Methodical, disciplined (at work), a good and respected leader. He was a mechanical engineer who became a global expert on geothermal power. Strange, he didn’t exhibit any of those qualities at home. He was frustrated and angry most of the time. That is all I want to say about that.
In the sixth form (Year 10), I taught a friend how to play table tennis. He later became No.3 in NZ, and his wife was No.1. He represents New Zealand as a high-performance coach at world championships, commonwealth games and the Olympics. I was Captain of the School Table Tennis Team. I was nationally ranked (after I was scheduled to play the No.1 in the country at the time, Peter Jackson). He didn’t show, so I got the win. My rankings shot up to the top twenty, and it sure helped my confidence.
My friend (Steve) was bright, didn’t work hard at all and flew through the National (nationwide) exams (think he got accredited- pass through internal exams). I didn’t. I only passed one exam but again advanced to the seventh form.
Age-wise I was the right age for my year, and I excelled. Top marks in every subject, including poetry. Awards at the end of the year, I looked like a child prodigy. Dad was proud (for a time).
My main bugbear was English, couldn’t for the life of me pass a damm exam. I loved poetry, my favourite poem being “The Old House” by Maori poet Hone Tuwhare. I could personify his worlds and create a visual representation that made it easy to write about. I got top marks in the form (over three hundred students), but as normal, I spent too long on the poetry and ran out of time for the Shakespeare questions on Romeo & Juliet. Got a fantastic Sixth Firm Certificate. The previous year it had been something like twenty, and the second time it was seven.
At the end of that year, I worked as an information officer at the beach (loved helping people). I also applied as a seventeen-year-old to be a teacher (had previously applied as a sixteen-year-old and was turned down), but this time I was accepted. I chose, however, to return to school. The seventh form is sort of like a gap year (it’s like college in the states). I did a university paper | experience at the Earth Sciences department at my local university.
I was also runner-up in a regional mathematics competition. The first feeling of fame, was on TV, in newspaper interviews, and a day talking to a CEO of a leading computer vendor in the capital (ICL), a British company. I also played the flute in a regional (secondary school) orchestra. Helped with my breathing. I did cross-country running and came fourth in a Prince of The Mountain run. Got heat stroke in the afternoon (my body could not handle the strength and endurance required to win). I cycled too. Overcame a serious life-threatening accident as an eight-year-old, where I had my head and face in bandages and was in hospital (for six weeks or so). Didn’t dampen my enthusiasm to get on the bike again.
Did okay in the seventh form. Lost considerable focus but passed (after learning n study/exam technique and understanding how photographic memory worked). I needed two hundred and fifty to pass, and I achieved that.
UNIVERSITY AND WORKING LIFE
Red book entry and offer as a Researcher at IBM’s Nordic Labs in Sweden. The world’s foremost R&D lab. At the time, they were generating five billion American dollars per year in license revenue. If I had taken up the offer, who knows, I could have been one of the top inventors in the world. I regret not taking that job.
I didn’t take it because of the girl I was dating at the time. She encouraged me to go for it. I should have done it, but it was not to be. Later that relationship ended since I could not give her children. I understood. However, breakups are very difficult. I was quite depressed and did feel suicidal. My guardian angel kept me alive to fulfil my life goals.
Eighteen months later, I was married; my wife was from a Dutch family who tried really hard to dissuade us from marrying. My wife, however, wasn’t having a bar of it. This was the only time in her life when she ignored her mother. It was a call from God for each of us. He knew that we were right for each other. Thirty-one years later, through much hardship, we are still together.
My wife and I both have dyslexia, and she also has dyspraxia. We are both on the autism spectrum. She is gregarious and naturally gets on with people; I am the opposite. I’m naturally an introvert who has to break free of those shackles somehow to overcome the fear of communicating with other people.
Later, due to my work conditions, and her losing her Dad (same week as Mother Teresa and Princess Di), and her boss not understanding her dyslexia and dyspraxia, she had a breakdown. After a time in hospital (a year), it was diagnosed as positive schizophrenia.
It was a bad break, and due to her genetics, no drugs really worked. I did discover a pattern in her drug regimens that became an international patent making ten million USD every time it was licensed. At the time, I was disappointed as it really had the capability to cure anyone of any condition if it was implemented the way I intended. It wasn’t.
Around this time, we got three prophecies. Early in our last year in the UK, we got a prophesy that life would become very difficult; times of great hardship were on the horizon. This was foreboding (my wife’s mental illness and drugs whose side effects were far worse than the original condition). Before the prophecies, my friend gave me a prophecy, since obviously, I wasn’t coping, saying in response to a question to God, “will my wife be okay again?”. God responded, “she will be better than ok”. I held onto that truth for many years until it became true.
The three prophecies came after our Church Pastor committed suicide. He had undisclosed mental health issues (in his family), but as a result of that terrible time, the whole church got a lot of support from all other churches (regardless of denomination across the city, NZ, and the world). The prophecies were incredible: they were intended by God to lift us into majestic thinking.
My wife’s was: she would witness to millions (I thought at the time like the Dutch evangelist Joni). I have the platform for this (a Facebook Community site with close to one and half million fans & followers), and mine was: to be number one in the world (of what I didn’t know at the time) To earn a million (how I didn’t know) They both got my attention, and it took about eighteen months for the first one to be fulfilled.
I used to ride road bikes. It was how I got from home to work. I remember, back then, I didn’t worry about traffic cops and would frequently take my bike, Honda VFR500F, up to the ton, just before a rise where I could be picked off by radar. It was a thrill. I clocked three hours and fifty minutes from Auckland to Wellington, perhaps a record, only stopping to refuel.
I remember when I rode, my bum went numb. All the nightlife (insects) missed my headlamp and hit my helmet at night. It was a constant stream. My tires were ultra expensive Yokohama slicks (track racing tires). They had a compound that melted against the road for an ultimate stick. However, after fifteen minutes of rain, there was nothing.
I felt I overworked my guardian angel, as there were many close calls but no accidents. Had one legal event, though, when I parked my bike on the centre stand rather than the side stand. A gust of wind came along, which toppled my bike against the next in line and so on. They all sued me for new bikes. I was lucky that a friend’s girlfriend worked in the law firm suing me. It was an ‘act of god’. I ignored the demand, and the problem went away. I gave up riding when I got engaged.
I worked for a global company called EDS (Electronic Data Systems). I discovered the patent program in 2000. At the time, I was on temporary duties in Singapore and Hong Kong, and they covered both myself and my wife’s travel and expenses. They looked after her better than any company since.
I became the leading inventor in the world of EDS. There were about 5000 inventors (never the job title, just a voluntary function). At the peak, I was working on thirty-five patents and was chasing a one million USD prize for creating one billion USD of new revenue for the company through my IP. As I was getting close to the goal, the CEO (President) of the company in Plano, Texas, pulled the award. I was quite annoyed but got over it. I was the global founder and leader of a number of communities of interest. Was awarded a research day where my level in the organisational hierarchy jumped from a level thirteen Engineer to level four (VP) level. I reported to the Manager of the Fellows, who reported to the CIO. I even had my own internal TV channel encouraging all staff around the world to be innovative.
I guess this was my second career peak after the offer to join IBM’s Nordic Labs, not counting billionaires courting me with the intention of stealing IP (not signing NDA’s). One set of billionaires flew out to NZ on their Lear Jet to wine and dine me. Silly me, I trusted them and gave them the blueprints for a new design; they took it and flew back the same night.
At that time, too, I was working on one hundred and twenty innovations for our primary customer General Motors. They wanted to give two research days a week. But I could not be released. Suspect corporate espionage here as their agent acquired all the innovations when legally they were not entitled to them. They were happy times but shattered due to my real job work pressures and a couple of clashes with management (misunderstandings, really). Eventually, along with 50% of my department, I was made redundant and was picked up immediately by Vodafone in Australia.
I had to quit my job to take it up a second opportunity I shouldn’t have turned down. Big risk, though, as there was no income while I was working on achieving that goal. As it turned out, I would have earned thirty million AU from an innovation they took to the market, and it made one hundred and twenty million. Bummer.
I took voluntary redundancy from partner Nokia and since then have been in my own business. The business, over time, has morphed somewhat, and at present, I need help to take up various opportunities that are on the table. Finding it very hard to move forward.
Burden of Care
I have a high burden to care for my wife (who is better than ok at the moment but still requires care) and my mother, who has Alzheimer’s (she is slipping slowly). I can barely get enough energy to support both of them and handle all the admin that comes from handling all complex accounts and company accounts in Australia and NZ. I get zero help from either my wife’s family or my own family. Zero understanding for 47XXY as well. But that is okay, and that is life.
- I’m a pure xxy with four life-threatening conditions and asthma.
- I keep pretty fit, resting heart rate around fifty, lowest recorded thirty-eight, and I don’t take HRT. I have never been pressured to take it.
- I’m CIS gendered, ie present as my birth gender, even though I am naturally high in Estrogen, I have breasts, as well as a fast metabolism, and I am using many supplements.
- I was diagnosed (DXed) at age twenty and tested on one hundred cells, resulting in 100% XXY. I was later retested because they couldn’t believe I was XXY, this time, it was twenty cells, and all were XXY.
- My IQ is 136; my Visual IQ is 155. High Emotional IQ. I test off the scale for Asperger’s. I have ADP and ADHD.
- I take no prescription drugs other than Zipoclone for onset insomnia, which I got from the original stress of my wife’s breakdown. I have since reduced that drug to a minimum.
- Since about the age of fifteen, I have maintained an increased level of Testosterone (naturally), causing my Estrogen to bounce high to low on a weekly basis (sometimes longer).
I’m not against natural or bio-identical testosterone in very small doses. We don’t need to have the same testosterone level as 46XY or, for that matter, the same estrogen as 46XX. We do need the minimums, though. For me, my original baseline was five point two testosterone and three hundred and ten estrogen. With a bit of exercise, I can lift it to five point nine testosterone and two hundred+ estrogen. With a lot of exercise, I can lift it to seven testosterone and one hundred and forty+ estrogen. I would have to stop exercise altogether to see my estrogen naturally rise to over three hundred, but I can’t do that right now as I am always on the move