Monday, 31 August 2009

Are you a terrorist?

The company I have got a new job with sent me a raft of instructions, documents and forms to fill in and I have to admit I've been putting off dealing with it. Not only is my natural procrastination kicking in, but flicking through it there is so much information they want me to supply that I knew it wouldn't just be ticking some boxes and signing my name. It is things like this that cause my Asperger's Syndrome (AS) to really raise my anxiety levels.

First task was to see all the documents I had to send them as proof of my identity. Ideally they wanted a passport but mine has expired, but they would also accept a copy of my birth certificate plus a signed photo. I already had some spare passport photos from when I last needed them so that wasn't a problem. So on Saturday I took my birth certificate plus a bank statement plus my phone bill somewhere I could get them photocopied.

Second task was filling in all of the various forms which I did tonight. They wanted to know all of the address I had stayed at for the last five years and my dates of residence. Do people actually know this stuff? Is this something that normal people keep track of? I suddenly felt like a very incompetent librarian. To find my old address I enlisted the help of Amazon. I've been using it forever and it keeps its own address book of places you have had items dispatched to. So from that I could find out my old addresses. But the dates? I don't even know the date I moved into my current address…however again the internet came to my aid. Whenever I move into a new place I like to take pictures of anything that is damaged or worn so they can't claim I did it. I take these pictures digitally but have them printed off and sent to me on-line, so I logged in to the site I use (PhotoBox) and viewed by past transactions and from that found a rough date that I moved in. For the rest I just made up dates :)

They also wanted to know about my past employment and references for three years but luckily I have been at my current job for three years so that was easier than it might have been.

As the company does some work for the government I needed to complete a government security questionnaire which needed details of my parents. Details that any normal son really should know…but alas I had to phone my parents to find out information such as their middle names, towns of birth, dates of birth etc. Thankfully they were in so I could get this thing done and dusted, and thankfully it was my dad who answered. He is quite pragmatic about these things and understands the importance of measuring twice but cutting once. Had my mother answered she would just lecture me on the fact that I don't know her middle name or her birthday. She would then have given me the wrong birth date so she could continue the lie about her real age and knowing my luck her name and fake date of birth would correspond to Osama bin Laden's sister.

As well as those things there were the usual questions where they wanted explicit assurance that I had never tried to overthrow a government and did not associate with saboteurs. I also lied a few times too but when it comes to job forms people with AS always have a decision to make about how honest they should be. I know…in theory everyone should be 100% honest at all times, but I feel that as my AS doesn't too adversely affect me at work that it isn't too bad that I don't admit to having it. I say "don't admit to having it" but I really mean "lie about not having a disability".

Anyway, it's all done now so I'll get it sent off tomorrow and hopefully I haven't missed anything out or messed anything up. To give you an idea how inefficient these forms are here is a summary of the number of times I had to supply each piece of information;

Name x 7
Signature x 4
Date of Birth x 5
Place of birth x 3
Current Address x 4
Old Addresses x 2


A said...

Usually they say something like, "Do you have a disability that may adversely affect your performance at work?" or "Do you consider yourself to have a disability?"

If it was either of those, you can safely say No in this situation!

After all, we can be "disabled" in one situation and come into our own in others :)

Beastinblack said...

ditto for supplying information and work, they will want to know my favourite sexual position and foreplay technique at this rate. Makes me seriously paranoid that they want to get rid of me.