Free Pet Adoption and Unadvertised Exceptions



I want to preface this post by saying that I am not complaining about how my thwarted adoption experience played out. The problem I have is the misleading advertising by the Charleston Animal Society. While I believe that the Charleston Animal Society is a great place that does great work for animals, I do believe that their marketing may have been a little over zealous which led to misleading advertising. Allow me to explain.

On Friday, August 2, I met with someone I had been corresponding with regarding a dog from the shelter. He had been in foster, but was displayed on the website as a resident of the shelter.

I had read the website (see photo above) as well as advertisements stating that ALL animals at the shelter were free for adoption. As you can see, it states that ALL animals, or EVERY animal adoption is free. There is no notice that some animals are not subject to the free adoption. Nothing at all indicates that there are exceptions to ‘ALL,’ but there are. And I found out the hard way.

After corresponding for several days with the person who had the dog, finding out about him, receiving adorable photos and getting really excited, we arranged a meeting for Friday. I never asked if the dog was free to adopt because, well, all the advertising, the website and even the video display at the shelter itself said ALL adoptions were free.

Guess I was to silly to assume that ALL meant ALL.

So, the day finally came. I was so excited I couldn’t even eat that morning. I could not wait to meet the dog I wanted to bring home and make part of my family. I had fallen in love with the photos and the things the foster mom had communicated to me. He sounded fantastic!

My husband and I got there really early and we waited. When the dog got there he was even cuter than his photos. He seemed happy but I sensed that he needed to bond with someone and I was ready to give him that bond. We walked outside to spend some time with him and that is when the bomb was dropped on me.

This dog did not qualify for the free adoption program. This dog was not part of the ‘ALL’ animals for adoption. I am not certain what the difference was; it was never explained to me. I was told that I could adopt him for a ‘small donation’ to the shelter. I had not come prepared to pay anything. I had gotten some things for the dog I thought I was going to get and my next payday was a week away.

He would have had the best food, lots of love and great care but at that very moment I was not prepared to pay anything. The ‘small donation’ was not even defined so I don’t know if they meant $20 or $200. All I knew is that we had nothing on us at the time because of the misleading advertising.

I was heartbroken. I had to walk away after being so excited; after believing that ‘ALL’ really did mean ‘ALL.’

As I said, if they have exceptions to the free adoptions, that is fine. But it needs to be indicated somewhere in the advertising. Maybe change ‘ALL’ to ‘MOST’ so at least prospective adopters will know to inquire first. I don’t know if I am the only one who has encountered this problem, but I can only imagine what would happen if a child was involved in this and had the deep disappointment that I did.

I went there expecting to bring home a new family member but went home empty handed. I just feel deceived but that may be the literal mindedness of the Asperger’s.

I just really, truly believed their advertisement and believed that ‘ALL’ really meant ‘ALL.’ A sad lesson learned.


Walmart and Overstimulation, Oh, and Healthy Eating


Walmart is NOT your friend.

Yes, I am pretty irritated with Walmart right now. That is where we do most of our shopping although I don’t like it. My husband loves Walmart; puts his hand over his heart when he says the sacred name (not really, that is just sarcasm – we aspies can be sarcastic sometimes). But he really does like it.

I was there today picking up a few vegetables for dinner. We eat really  healthy which means we eat clean, which means we eat fresh so we have to go to the store several times a week.

You know, I was wondering, is anyone interested in learning how I cook really healthy on a very tight, very small budget? If so, let me know and I can share some recipes and tips from time to time. We eat really cheap and healthy. I also have an absolutely awesome recipe for no cook brownies that are incredible!

Anyway, I was in Walmart picking this stuff up. Walmart really is a terrible place, you know?

It is horrible for me because of my sensory processing issues. there is just too much going on with the flickering lights, noise, business and the smells. It is just too much. As I walked to the back to get eggs, I became overwhelmed with all the sounds, buggie wheels clacking, people talking, children crying, phones ringing, light buzzing, the motors in the coolers humming, doors swinging, registers clanging, feet hitting the floor, noise, noise, noise. It was awful.

I made my way to the registers only to find extremely long lines and only a few registers open. I really want to know why in the world do they have 30 or so registers in the front if they are only going to have, at best, 7 going at any given time?

So, 15 minutes I stood, listening to all the noise, getting agitated from being overwhelmed. I was stimming, rocking back and forth, but I did not care.

If Walmart really cared about its customers, they would provide better customer service.

Whatever happened to the Walmart rule that if 4 people were standing in line for the register they would open another register?

I am going to start going to the local farmer’s market and to the grocery store. I am mad at Walmart. They can keep their noisy, sensory UNfriendly store.


Cooper River Bridge photo by Stephanie A. Mayberry

Cooper River Bridge photo by Stephanie A. Mayberry


I like lines. I prefer lines and right angles over rounded corners. Guess that is the Aspie in me. I like the cleanness of lines, the straightness, the order.

I also really like overcast days. I KNOW that is an Aspie thing! The sun is way too bright, sometimes even if I wear sunglasses. I like it when the clouds hide the sun.

This is one of my favorite photos. I took it while my husband was driving across the Cooper River Bridge in South Caroline. It is a very pretty bridge, an impressive structure.

I also like this photo because that was a very good day. I like good days, don’t you?

Aspie Lapse


Today my mother-in-law took my husband and me to lunch. While we were eating, the lady came by with the drinks. I was busy attacking my baked potato (not really attacking, just preparing it) and when she asked if I had unsweetened tea, I just nodded without looking up.

Usually I try very hard to be polite because it is so easy for me to just be in my own Aspie world and be what others would perceive as rude. I have asked my husband to tell me when I lapse into the Aspie focus thing so that I can not be rude to people.

When the lady walked away, he leaned over and very quietly whispered, “You really should look at people when you talk to them. It is seen as rude when you don’t.”

I didn’t realize I had done it or that she would perceive me as rude. To me, I was focused on fixing my potato – not regular, NT focus, Aspie focus. It is very intense.

When she came by again, I looked right at her and said, “I am sorry for being rude before. I did not mean to be. Thank you for refilling my tea.”

She smiled very big and her face got shiny. I don’t really know what that means, but she said it was OK that she understood. Her voice changed to a softer, brighter tone. I think she was happy.

Anyway, I was glad that she was happy and did not have hurt feelings.

Just wish I could catch my Aspie lapses more often before I get myself into situations like that.

Research vs. Stalking


As a writer I am naturally curious about things. As an Aspie, I am naturally curious about people. I like to watch people, observe their behaviors, listen to the things they say and read the things they write. Facebook is a plethora of information on human behavior!

One person will vent in a post, griping about mean people or rudeness. Suddenly, twenty people will respond to that post asking, “is it me you are talking about?” And that person is like, “Uh, no, it was a general post.”

I watch people in person too. I am not crazy about crowded places like malls, but if I can find a quiet corner, the mall is like a people zoo for me.

I visit blogs, read social media posts and watch people. They are just so doggone interesting! I don’t understand half of what they do but they are interesting.

It’s OK, though, most of them don’t understand me either. I am just the weird girl with Asperger’s – staring at them…