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ImAnAspie
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10 Mar 2015, 2:55 pm

Hi,
I'm interested in hearing about any stories you may have regarding ToM and mindblindness issues either from childhood or as an adult and whether you've learned to cope with age or is it still an issue for you? If so, have you improved any throughout the years?


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Kiriae
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10 Mar 2015, 4:58 pm

Adult:

Me and mom, sitting together in our living room. After a while I realize something is wrong. I am not sure whats that so I ask:

- Are you sad?
- I'm tired. It was a hard day. - mom answers.

I am proud of myself that I got it right since I rarely acknowledge other peoples mood. I mistaken being tired for sadness but it's still better than I usually do.

A few minutes passes.

- Mom. Let's go shopping. - I say, excited - I would like to buy...

Mom starts yelling at me. I get confused. I have no idea why she blown up like that...

It took me a while to realize what mistake I made. When she told me she is tired I took it as a fact ("I'm wearing a blue t-shirt" kind of fact) and I forgot about that despite still sitting next to her(I didn't see anything wrong anymore because I knew she looks like that because she is tired). I didn't think she must want to stay home and do nothing because she is tired. I felt like shopping so I automatically supposed she also would be happy to go shopping. Her angry reaction totally surprised me.



Raleigh
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10 Mar 2015, 5:02 pm

I'm not sure if this is what you mean, but I've had a few incidents at work which may be due to lack of ToM or mindblindness. For example:

I notice another employee has written the boss's name wrong on a letter.
I say, "That's not how you spell it. It only has one T." I spell it out for her.
The boss, unknown to me, has walked up behind me. He asks, "What's going on?"
I say, "She spelt your name with two T's so I was spelling it correctly."
The boss asks, "So you're telling on her?"
I'm very confused at this point, so I don't answer. The boss walks away. I have no idea how he got "I was telling on" the other employee from what I said. He asked what was happening. I told him. Should I have said something different?

The boss says, "You can't fill out your timesheet in advance because that's falsifying records."
I submit my timesheet on Friday afternoon. I get reprimanded for handing it in late.
Apparently everyone else except me could interpret the boss's statement as, "You can't fill out your timesheet in advance except on Fridays." How was I supposed to work this out?

Two people in the office have had a verbal altercation. One of them has taken their work and is sitting in another room. When lunch time comes, I notice the employee is absent from the lunch room. The other employee involved in the argument (K) has brought in a cake to share.
I say, "I'll take some cake in to J."
K says, "Why would you do that?"
I say, "Because I like J."
Someone else laughs and says, "That's bitchy!"
I'm very confused. I thought I was being nice. How is this bitchy?

I arrive at work late. Everyone is looking very sad. Some are crying. I ask someone, (X) "What happened?" I'm told one of the employees has lost their partner in a car accident. X starts telling me a story about the deceased person. It makes me remember a story about the person that I found really funny. I start relating the story. I'm laughing when the boss walks in. He asks, "Haven't you heard the news?"
I say, "Yes."
He looks at me and shakes his head before waking off.

^ I get this one. I shouldn't have laughed. But can anyone explain the others to me? I still do things similar to this on a regular basis, so I can't see myself ever improving.


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ImAnAspie
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10 Mar 2015, 6:09 pm

I've come to the conclusion that people are illogical, inconsistent, emotionally unstable, fickle minded animals and you've practically got to be a mind reader to avoid their foul and often changing moods.


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starkid
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10 Mar 2015, 6:20 pm

Raleigh wrote:
Two people in the office have had a verbal altercation. One of them has taken their work and is sitting in another room. When lunch time comes, I notice the employee is absent from the lunch room. The other employee involved in the argument (K) has brought in a cake to share.
I say, "I'll take some cake in to J."
K says, "Why would you do that?"
I say, "Because I like J."
Someone else laughs and says, "That's bitchy!"
I'm very confused. I thought I was being nice. How is this bitchy?

Assuming you knew that they'd had an argument when you did this, you are supposed to assume that a person doesn't want to share her cake with someone she just had an altercation with, even if she (lies and) says that the cake is for everyone at work.

You are expected to sort of "mirror" K's assumed anger or upsetness towards J rather than overtly act on your own attitude towards J.


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Last edited by starkid on 10 Mar 2015, 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

starkid
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10 Mar 2015, 6:25 pm

Raleigh wrote:
Apparently everyone else except me could interpret the boss's statement as, "You can't fill out your timesheet in advance except on Fridays." How was I supposed to work this out?


Typically, handing a timesheet in on a Friday afternoon does not allow enough time for the pay check to be processed on-time because the payroll dept. will be leaving for the weekend.


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QuiversWhiskers
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10 Mar 2015, 7:05 pm

Sometimes I wonder if this mindblindness/TOM business isn't just an extension of literal thinking, that they are the same thing.

Kiriae wrote:
Adult:

Me and mom, sitting together in our living room. After a while I realize something is wrong. I am not sure whats that so I ask:

- Are you sad?
- I'm tired. It was a hard day. - mom answers.

I am proud of myself that I got it right since I rarely acknowledge other peoples mood. I mistaken being tired for sadness but it's still better than I usually do.

A few minutes passes.

- Mom. Let's go shopping. - I say, excited - I would like to buy...

Mom starts yelling at me. I get confused. I have no idea why she blown up like that...

It took me a while to realize what mistake I made. When she told me she is tired I took it as a fact ("I'm wearing a blue t-shirt" kind of fact) and I forgot about that despite still sitting next to her(I didn't see anything wrong anymore because I knew she looks like that because she is tired). I didn't think she must want to stay home and do nothing because she is tired. I felt like shopping so I automatically supposed she also would be happy to go shopping. Her angry reaction totally surprised me.


I do the above sort of thing all the time to my husband and kids. I feel like crap when I "get called" on it because I didn't think that far and feel like an inconsiderate person. I've been wondering if it's a theory of mind thing. Like my husband will be extremely sore from working out and he'll tell me but I immediately forget because I can't see it and can't feel it or I'll touch him roughly and with force in playing knowing he said he was sore but not think it will hurt him. And then I feel horribly guilty because I hurt him. It's like I don't think far enough and am very forgetful. My mom was the same way to me growing up. I'd tell her I was tired and she'd say "okay" or tell me to go lay down but not seem to have any idea that me feeling sick and horrible on the couch at a relatives house until 2 am or so meant that I was in agony craving going to bed and getting away from the relatives and their house. It wasn't just that. It was with lots of things. I am trying nowadays to think about what the meaning is behind what my kids or husband say. Some of this is "organic" ToM slips and some of it is more from being overwhelmed and from distraction. I catch myself doing these things with my kids, taking them too literally when I am trying to do something else that involves a lot of thinking: household stuff, leaving the house, getting in or out of the car, grocery shopping, running errands, sewing, cooking, etc.

A few more examples:

When I was a kid in fourth or fifth grade, other kids would tell me that I was annoying so I'd continue doing the annoying thing in an effort to prove it wasn't annoying. I was having fun and it wasn't annoying, but I liked making them mad because I thought they were stupid or needed to "get over it." I was hurt by their derision and wanted to fight back. It's like they couldn't appreciate the sound I was making or the thing I was doing just for the way it sounded or looked.

One time in late elementary or early middle school, I didn't take care of a gift someone gave me for my birthday and it got ruined in the vacuum. I felt so guilty about it that I confessed to the person who gave me the gift that it had been ruined. I wanted to make it right so I confessed and she was hurt and upset and told me I shouldn't have told her that. I felt like crap. I thought I needed to confess to make it right and that it would be lying if I didn't tell her about it because she'd go on assuming that the gift was still "living" if you will. I figured it would come out eventually anyway if she noticed I was no longer wearing it. The weird part is that logically I knew she didn't know, but at the same time couldn't believe she didn't know already. It was very confusing for me. And my thoughts and feelings about it were so contradictory. I thought she'd like to know about the mishap so that she could tell me it was okay because she'd want to comfort me, but as it turned out that was definitely not the case.

I know I tend to project. If I think someone is upset about something I did, I see that in their face. If I am sad, I am way more likely to ask someone else if they are sad when they aren't at all. I wonder if having a tendency to project is a sign of a compromised theory of mind or difficulty reading faces and body language rather than purely a mental illness thing (as is a popular belief among those professionals prone to see borderline personality disorder in people who project a lot). It takes a lot of thought and consideration and logic for me to get around my "projections."


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Raleigh
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11 Mar 2015, 4:32 am

starkid wrote:
Raleigh wrote:
Two people in the office have had a verbal altercation. One of them has taken their work and is sitting in another room. When lunch time comes, I notice the employee is absent from the lunch room. The other employee involved in the argument (K) has brought in a cake to share.
I say, "I'll take some cake in to J."
K says, "Why would you do that?"
I say, "Because I like J."
Someone else laughs and says, "That's bitchy!"
I'm very confused. I thought I was being nice. How is this bitchy?

Assuming you knew that they'd had an argument when you did this, you are supposed to assume that a person doesn't want to share her cake with someone she just had an altercation with, even if she (lies and) says that the cake is for everyone at work.

You are expected to sort of "mirror" K's assumed anger or upsetness towards J rather than overtly act on your own attitude towards J.

Thanks for explaining. This one's had me stumped for a while. Even so, it still amazes me how I was the one branded as bitchy in this scenario.
I thought it might have been because I said I liked J, which somehow implied that I didn't like K. I thought perhaps the physical division between the two women had been like drawn battlelines and we were expected to take sides.
I've thought about this incident a lot since it happened and I've come to the conclusion that people are completely nonsensical.


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Raleigh
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11 Mar 2015, 4:46 am

starkid wrote:
Raleigh wrote:
Apparently everyone else except me could interpret the boss's statement as, "You can't fill out your timesheet in advance except on Fridays." How was I supposed to work this out?


Typically, handing a timesheet in on a Friday afternoon does not allow enough time for the pay check to be processed on-time because the payroll dept. will be leaving for the weekend.

To me, saying "you can't fill out your timesheet in advance" means you can't do it under any circumstances. This means submitting your timesheet on Friday morning is falsifying records. When I pointed this out to another employee, he frowned and said. "Oh yeah. I never thought of that."
He'd never thought of it, but to me this was glaringly obvious.
No matter, I was still wrong.


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Raleigh
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11 Mar 2015, 4:51 am

ImAnAspie wrote:
I've come to the conclusion that people are illogical, inconsistent, emotionally unstable, fickle minded animals and you've practically got to be a mind reader to avoid their foul and often changing moods.

Yep. I totally agree. Do you yourself have a story of people perverseness?


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ImAnAspie
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11 Mar 2015, 6:38 am

Raleigh wrote:
ImAnAspie wrote:
I've come to the conclusion that people are illogical, inconsistent, emotionally unstable, fickle minded animals and you've practically got to be a mind reader to avoid their foul and often changing moods.

Yep. I totally agree. Do you yourself have a story of people perverseness?


When I was younger, I used to think everybody was the same everywhere. It was quite late in life (24yo when I got my first girlfriend/partner) that I found out that everybody's different at home and some of them are REALLY WEIRD! It came as a bit of a shock. I've always been the same wherever I am. If you've seen me at home, You've seen me everywhere. I don't change. They do, depending on the company they're in.


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Sherry221B
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11 Mar 2015, 6:54 am

I would be confused in all those situations too, all the written situations in here. I do not understand how it is wrong that you laughed because of you remembering something else. ImAnAspie, what do you mean with that everybody is different at home....? With what you write of "changing" the way others act depending the place they find themselves in. This is confusing.

I want to also add that this has reminded me of something I read: that someone would act really stupid when being with certain individuals, and when being with their partner acting in a more rational way.



ImAnAspie
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11 Mar 2015, 7:01 am

Sherry221B wrote:
I would be confused in all those situations too, all the written situations in here. I do not understand how it is wrong that you laughed because of you remembering something else. ImAnAspie, what do you mean with that everybody is different at home....? With what you write of "changing" the way others act depending the place they find themselves in. This is confusing.

I want to also add that this has reminded me of something I read: that someone would act really stupid when being with certain individuals, and when being with their partner acting in a more rational way.


People wear masks. They act differently in different situations depending on the company they're in. They change themselves to suit the company they're in.

I've never done that. I'm always the same old boring me no matter where I am or the company I'm in. Perhaps that's why I'm a social flop!

I thought other people were the same wherever they go. They're not.

I've lived a very sheltered, naive life.


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11 Mar 2015, 7:12 am

ImAnAspie wrote:
People wear masks. They act differently in different situations depending on the company they're in. They change themselves to suit the company they're in.



Yep, sociopaths are the most guilty of this(they're super-fake), and the NTs aren't far behind. :?



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11 Mar 2015, 7:19 am

I went to a Harry Potter quiz a few weeks ago. Harry Potter used to be my special interest but much of what I knew has trickled out.

During the quiz, answers I knew to be right were marked as wrong. Although in the past I've been quite extreme about fairness but on this occasion was able to shrug it off - as it may well have been that I confused details. Plus, I'd noticed that the marking was partly based on actual scores and partly just for fun.

I really enjoyed getting to share my interest, as I don't usually get to and especially not when there's time limits on each question and answer to stop me going overboard.

After the quiz, I re-read some of the books and realised that it turned out I was correct. I made a status on facebook about it jokingly about the second error I found (not mentioning the first). I found more errors later but know that it is rude to potentially publicly shame someone even if I don't mean it that way, so I only commented with one additional really, really, minor one. It might have been that someone asked if I'd seen more I don't know.

They liked it and found it amusing. Pretty good up until here, right?

So, then, knowing that it's not good to shame people in public I went to a roller derby training session. I'm always interested in keeping my knowledge accurate and often check on things I know.

The quiz writer and someone who was sure I was wrong were aside from others, so I spotted my chance and told them what I'd noticed.

They said that I'd read it wrong and I pointed out that it was right.

"Well, yes, I suppose that's technically right according to the wording but that's not what it meant." The quiz writer replied and then explained what she'd meant.

"So, that's 3 errors you've spotted now?" The other one said.

"No, I've found 4 in the 2 books I've read." I replied.

"You don't like being wrong, do you?"

"I don't mind being wrong. I just like Harry Potter."

Oh, and people tend to give cake out of kindness. K was angry at J, so giving K's cake to J highlights that you think it is wrong not to give cake to J. This is interpreted as 'making a point' as though you are aligning yourself to J's 'side' that than K's.



Last edited by ConceptuallyCurious on 11 Mar 2015, 7:21 am, edited 1 time in total.