Parents ask me all the time, "Do you have a tough time losing at a game?" It seems those on the spectrum often times become enveloped within a game. Myself? I love playing games for the sake of playing games unless it is something I truly want to compete at and iRacing is one of those.
The past two days will go down in my books as the roughest stretch of that game. It started two days ago when on lap 2 of the Indycar series at Texas a car spun right in front of me and I was collected and finished last. Next race, lap 77 out of 110, a lap car on my outside hit the wall and bounced into me. Last night I was in a four car breakaway and we had 16 seconds on 5th place; truly this was just a leisurely 220mph drive waiting for the end, but one of the best drivers in the game hit the wall by himself, I went low to avoid him, but another car hit him and deflected him into me. I then did a modified race and the streak continued as I was following a car that spun and I could do nothing. I went back to the Indycar and on the last lap I got cutoff and crashed. As if that all wasn't bad enough, when it came time for my final race that I had entered my internet died with one minute until the start. Because I was registered it counted me in the race so I got last.
Quite the run of luck, right? Just four days ago I almost had my iRating to 4,000, but now I'm at 3,300. There aren't many things I "have" to win at, but when it comes to iRacing I am very competitive with my iRating. Going back to what parents have asked me I will say I don't know what to do when it comes to that, but I can describe the feeling.
Imagine this; whenever you do a game of some sort imagine it becoming the only thing that matters. This topic will be covered in my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th books, but it is so fitting for me to say this now. Anyway, because we on the spectrum can hyper-focus on something, when we play a game it feels as if the entire world ceases to exist except within the confines of that game. So, 10 minutes ago doesn't matter, yesterday doesn't matter, and tomorrow doesn't matter. What this means is that of course we're going to have an emotional reaction when it doesn't go however we hoped it would. Last night I felt sick to my stomach after just two of the bad races. I wish I could learn when to not try anymore because everyone has a night that just isn't their night, but I enjoy it too much.
When I look at it objectively I don't know why it matters. iRating is gained and lost, races are won and they are lost, and sometimes the internet just decides it wants a one hour breather.While I may know this when outside the heat of the game once I am in the game the only thing that matters is that race.
As with most things on the spectrum there is no grey area; I either don't care or it becomes overly important. Again, I wish I could state a strategy to cope with issues like this, but since I can't I hope that just being able to describe it in these words allows you to better understand where we come from when we are in the midst of the game.