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Sat Jan 6, 2018, 11:23 AM

Any other aspies here?

I was diagnosed with Aspergers at 10 years old. Iíve lived a relatively normal life, and most people donít know. They just think something is ďdifferentĒ about me. I also have very intense, narrow interests, making it hard to focus sometimes at work (unless if Iím doing computer programming, in which case Iím intensely focused and into it).

Iíve pretty much ďgrown out ofĒ some of the more glaring deficiencies Iíve had (especially social problems). I was unable to look people in the eyes or hold a conversation for more than a minute previously. I was also overly timid well into my twenties, and would struggle to speak to people. My difficulties also gave me social anxiety, which made my problems worse. I didnít know (and sometimes still donít) the minute social intricacies that people take for granted.

Meeting new people is still intensely hard for me, but Iíve improved by miles. I find social interaction much easier now. I still get ďdrainedĒ very quickly in crowds, and need to retreat to the safety of a quiet area. Iím the type that frequently takes breaks to find the animals at a house party and give them a good belly rub.

Nobody knows, as I donít want to be treated any differently. I have a fully functioning brain, but people tend to have no idea what autism really is. Message boards are a great medium for me, because Iíve always been terrible with talking, but am perfectly fine with writing. Thanks for reading!

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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply Any other aspies here? (Original post)
Oneironaut Jan 2018 OP
femmedem Jan 2018 #1
Oneironaut Jan 2018 #2
rock Jan 2018 #3
Oneironaut Jan 2018 #7
Jim Lane Jan 2018 #4
Oneironaut Jan 2018 #8
Jim Lane Jan 2018 #9
mvd Jan 2018 #5
grantcart Jan 2018 #6
lindysalsagal Jan 2018 #10
easttexaslefty Jan 2018 #11
LWolf Jan 2018 #12

Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 11:31 AM

1. I'm not an aspie, but I appreciate your sharing your experience.

Thanks for posting and giving me some insight into your world.

My sister thinks she may be on the spectrum, although she hasn't been diagnosed. I have one friend with Aspergers who is a concert violinist and used to give "pay what you can" mini concert/lectures in his music studio. Another person I admire who is very open about his Aspergers -- which he was diagnosed with only recently--is Eric Holthaus, a climatologist and writer for Grist whom I follow on twitter.

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Response to femmedem (Reply #1)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 11:34 AM

2. Awesome! I always wished I could play an instrument.

Unfortunately, my experience consists of plucking around on a guitar I bought until I got frustrated and gave up. lol

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 12:09 PM

3. Yes, you are fine with writing

Keep it up!

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Response to rock (Reply #3)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 05:01 PM

7. Thx

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 02:50 PM

4. A question for you and anyone else knowledgeable

 

First, to answer your question about other people: I'm not a full-fledged aspie but I do have some tendencies toward some of the characteristics. I've seen the non-technical term "spectrumy"; that seems to apply to me.

My question is about depictions of AS in popular culture. A lot of what I know or think I know comes from seeing the movie Adam and reading the novel The Rosie Project. I enjoyed both, and to some extent their depictions of the aspie protagonists accorded with what I've read, but I don't know how reliable the depictions are. In areas I do know something about, I've found movies and novels to have accurate material (that would give good information to people with no prior knowledge), but to mix it with totally ridiculous parts that are tossed in just for entertainment value, and that are seriously misinformative.

If you're familiar with either of these, do you have any comment? Are there any other popular treatments that strike you as significant?

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #4)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 05:09 PM

8. I havent seen / read either, but

from movies Iíve seen, depictions seem to jump between the ďautism makes you a savantĒ trope and the ďnonverbal genius childĒ trope. I wouldnít dare speak for everyone, but Hollywood generally seems to stick to cliches and stereotypes. Thatís probably true for most subjects.

Iím not a doctor or medical professional, though, so I might not be the best source. My diagnosis was based on my entire life history. When I was a baby, I screamed bloody murder when anybody (including my parents) held me. I hated being so much as touched. The fact I also flapped my arms and crawled backwards constantly were apparently ques that something was different.

People with autism are often portrayed as lacking empathy / showing empathy, which I donít think is always the case. Iíve always been completely normal in that regard.

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Response to Oneironaut (Reply #8)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 05:49 PM

9. About empathy

 

In both the works I mentioned, the aspie is not portrayed as being indifferent to other people's feelings, but is portrayed as having difficulty (more difficulty than most people) at understanding matters that aren't set forth in explicit terms.

For example: I watched Adam years ago, so my memory may be faulty, but I think there's a scene where the (non-aspie) female lead explains to Adam something that would have been clear to most listeners but that he hadn't understood. He's somewhat aware of his limitations, and he says in frustration, "You people read minds!"

In another scene, Adam, who's deeply interested in outer space, is at a party. A woman casually mentions that she's been thinking about possibly buying a telescope. He launches into a detailed analysis of the different options for telescopes. He's not non-empathetic in the sense of doing what he wants regardless of what the other person wants. He's sincerely trying to be helpful, but he just doesn't pick up the nonverbal cues that would tell him that he's giving her much more information than she wants.

I could well believe that this kind of empathy problem is frequent among aspies but far from universal. A fictional treatment can't cover all the nuances. I wouldn't fault the film if there are a lot of aspies who are like Adam in many respects.

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 03:42 PM

5. I can relate. I still find it really hard to meet people

It's like I prefer sticking with words I am more comfortable with. I am a loner. I think I may have autism instead of Asperger's, plus social anxiety. I definitely have strong feelings. I have never been diagnosed with anything, but I can tell something is there. I do better with people I know, but I still don't like socializing. I do well with writing.

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sat Jan 6, 2018, 03:46 PM

6. You sound like the kind of person that I would love to have as a neighbor.

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 09:09 PM

10. Personally, I think everyone is somewhere on the spectrum of socialization.

I've known a few dozen identified children, and they're all unique and inwardly motivated. I appreciate their honesty and authenticity. They can have any level of functionality, but they all know other's level of caring, whether they can verbalize it, or not. They know who they like and trust, and why. They can evaluate other's motivations and intentions.

This world of so many individuals doesn't always fit them, but I have my own issues with the world, too.

Welcome to du. Please try not to live too much on screens: they may be easier for you, but in the end, we're all strangers: you need real people in your life: keep trying to connect and build relationships: that's the true source of long-term happiness.

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 09:27 AM

11. Can totally relate

I'm the same way

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Response to Oneironaut (Original post)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 09:44 AM

12. I don't spend

much time here these days, but I remember an Aspie from 2003ish; a teenager. I can't remember his name off the top of my head.

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