My name's really Nicholas but I don’t like it so I call myself Ian. I left school three years ago and I work in a factory where I do all sorts of things. Mostly I load lorries and make tea for everyone. Sometimes I even have to clean the bogs.
I was useless at school. I hated it, everything about it, especially maths. I didn’t learn anything and when they tried to make me take exams, I just didn't show up. I didn't like the other kids either, and they did not have much to do with me.
My Dad’s a solicitor and my older brother is at uni. Dad is always telling me off. Sometimes, they have these posh parties at home and I’m supposed to wear suits and things but I don’t like it. I hate all these people, and if I had any money I'd leave and get my own place. But I don't, so I stay.
My Dad used to take me to a clinic to see this doctor. We had to go with my brother, but he hated going and laughed at me afterwards. I don’t think it did any good at all.
I prefer being at work but some of the blokes are pretty nasty. One even hit me. The boss is quite nice to me, though. They talk about girls and sex and things but I don’t. I only have one friend and I don’t know any girls.
The blokes think I’m gay and take the Mickey, I know I’m not - I’m just shy and anyway what's it got to do with them? Sometimes they get nasty especially when they drink and get a bit rough, like after the Christmas party.
I never talk to my Dad or the family about these things; anyway my Mum left home ages ago and she never sees me. Dad does ask me if I’m OK and I always say yes – it’s simpler. What I would really like is a dog, but my Dad won’t let me have one.
A few weeks ago he showed me this thing from the computer about Aspergers and when I read it I realised it was just like me. It made me feel a bit better because I know I’m not the same as other people but I can’t help it and I don’t know why. It says there’s not much they can do, it’s just a condition. At least I know why I seem different. Anyway my Dad has got diabetes so now we both have something.
These stories are composites based on real experiences