Jake is only five foot four. Throughout school, he consistently found himself as the smallest person in his class. Rarely did he ever get the chance to be the biggest at anything.
Fortunately, he didn't face severe bullying, but there were a few instances where he encountered it. It's unfortunate that being short can sometimes lead others to treat you differently. People tend to perceive those of shorter stature as younger or less capable, which can be frustrating.
So, these three undiagnosed mental illnesses, namely antisocial personality disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and ADHD, played a significant role in shaping his personality.
The most detrimental one was probably the stealing. Every time he walked into a store he stole something for no reason. He didn't need it and didn't really want it. He had four arrests for the grand total of all items together was $70. He did jail time for these things and he still has to really consciously stop himself from stealing. He knew he cannot do that anymore, but still did.
His height being underestimated by others played a role in his experiences with stealing, drug dealing, and using. His height allowed him to use his intelligence to outsmart others, whether it be tricking or charming them to get what he wanted.
Both Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD) can be characterized by a lack of empathy. It seems like this lack of empathy has affected his ability to genuinely care about other people's feelings and experiences.
He experiences significant challenges in social situations. Anxiety, difficulty with eye contact, and misunderstandings can make it hard for him to navigate conversations effectively. Understanding and interpreting social cues can be challenging for him. He takes things literally and misses jokes or the intended meaning of someone's words. When he feels overwhelmed, it's like a twofold effect, similar to having ASD. He has fidgeting behaviors that help calm him down. Pacing is a big soothing technique. He rarely sits down; he prefers to do everything standing up. People often tell him to sit down, but he feels better moving around.
Another aspect of his ADHD is impulsivity, constant movement, and hyperactivity. He has a tendency to seek out new and exciting experiences, whether it's through drugs, stealing, or anything that stimulates his senses. These experiences bring him a lot of happiness and enjoyment, also very tactile and sensory-oriented. Smells, in particular, hold a significant importance to him.
In his mind, everything that exists can easily take precedence over anything that isn't right in front of him. This can lead to forgetting about things that aren't immediately present. Cheating and lying are significant behaviors associated with SPD (Sociopathic Personality Disorder). Avoiding dealing with a situation in a constructive manner is a characteristic that aligns with this disorder. The focus is always on finding a way out, regardless of whether it is a good or ethical approach. In relationships, he tends to prioritize his own benefits and seek the most he can get from the other person. It becomes a matter of personal gain, disregarding the impact it may have on the other person.
After spending two and a half years in prison, it definitely felt like there was progress. Prison served as a timeout or a vacation of sorts, where he had the opportunity to reflect and work on fixing himself. It was a time where he could figure out what skills he needed to navigate life, as up until that point, he felt like he hadn't learned much. Being in prison taught him the value of having the freedom to go to work. It became a privilege that he appreciated. Finding employment quickly upon release can make the transition easier, although it can be challenging for many individuals. He was fortunate to find a job relatively quickly, and it provided a sense of purpose and excitement. During his time in prison, he established a new routine. He made a habit of working out, meditating, and doing yoga every day. These practices helped him tremendously in his personal growth.
However, there were still emotional lessons to be learned, particularly in recognizing the emotions of others. While he has made progress in understanding his own emotions, he acknowledges that there is room for improvement, especially when it comes to entering a new relationship.
About the Creator
I am a daughter, mother, friend, and colleague. I enjoy being in nature as it is a refreshing and rejuvenating experience. Psychology is a fascinating field that delves into understanding human behavior and the mind.