Alcohol, coffee and autism
It started with a bottle of Mike’s Hard Watermelon Lemonade on Saturday night. I’m allergic to alcohol, because of the yeast, but…I mean…I still eat bread and tortillas containing yeast, so is there really anymore harm in drinking alcohol than there is in eating the stuff containing yeast (and there is a lot of it)?
Anyway, I posted a photo to Instagram:
Sometime between taking the photo and making it to the screen to add text, I felt a need to laugh at anything and everything, and I couldn’t help smiling. I tried to keep my cool, though. The amount I drank above is the amount we tend to drink at the shows (e.g. GFAF Expo), to give you an idea of how quickly I begin to feel very light and very fluffy.
I’m surprised I finished the first one. I mean, I feel like I barely did, but I did.
About an hour to an hour-and-half, we had dinner, and…Charlise and I had another one. Go us.
I started to feel a little chill, and as I was drinking the next one, I felt the same feeling from the first bottle all over again, but slightly more intense—like feeling a vibrating massage thing for the second time, then feeling it for the first time…if that’s even possible? BUT it is like that.
I know, at the second one, I started typing messages to my friend in Spanish, but with typos. I don’t think he fluently knows Spanish, and my phone doesn’t have accents—so “número dos” became “nunero dos”. ?
I felt a little calmer after the second bottle. I alternated between water and the beer, though, because the latter just made me thirstier. I also took a long while to finish the second one; Remy started a fire in the bonfire thing, and Charlise roasted marshmallows. Then, we went inside because the fire kept dying and had microwave-made s’mores. They used Hershey’s chocolate bars; I used Enjoy Life Foods chocolate bars; I try to stay away from milk as much as possible.
I took half an antihistamine tablet sometime after midnight, because of allergies. I began to feel congested, possibly from all the yeast stuffs I’d had that day (for lunch, I’d had some kind of pesto tortellini by Amy’s Kitchen from the frozen food isle).
Sunday afternoon, Char ordered a [small] caramel frappuccino with soy milk and zero whip topping for me from Starbucks, in addition to her order. I know they don’t put a lot of coffee into their frappes, but they do put some, and I think we’ve established how little of something an affect on me requires. I felt extra stim-y for hours…and then sensory overload happened, and all I wanted was a sensory input reset button. I felt as though all my senses had heightened and as if I was going to have a meltdown, but…there was no meltdown—just the feeling of a meltdown as if it were approaching.
Effects of alcohol and coffee in autistics
I decided to do some reading (as usual) to determine whether this was a just me thing. There are various studies1 about how caffeine calms autistics down—mind you, they all use ableist terminology and are extremely for person-first language, it seemed—yet when I looked to forum communities for topics about the effects of these things on autistics, results vary—and few feel “calm”, unless you associate immediate exhaustion with calmness.
Some felt they could focus better.
Others felt dizzy, exhausted, overwhelmed and as if the feeling would never end.
I’m in the latter boat.
Perhaps, instead of just following studies, we could remember everyone is different?
As for the alcohol…well…apparently a lot of us [autistics] are extreme lightweights. ?
- I won’t link them for numerous reasons, but feel free to “caffeine helps autism” into your preferred search engine to see them. ↩