Got the sally ann test wrong as an adult

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blooiejagwa
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17 Oct 2018, 10:21 pm

Hi I dont know if you guys have heard of thd Sally ann test,

I am guessing it is common knowledge, but it is here

https://youtu.be/wp0rQ18gJUw


anyway I watched a video about it and got it wrong despite being an ADuLT level 1

It must be so mucg harder fr kids- esp level 2 or 3

Even now in my mind if I try to recreate the test I still want to say the wrong answer - I know intellectually now that it is wrong

but my instinct is urging me to that answer still.

This theory of mind thing goes a long way towards explaining all my other troubles. if my brain is saying one thing assuming a certain response, and ppl react differently of course trouble will arise



Aspie1
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18 Oct 2018, 8:48 pm

blooiejagwa wrote:
Hi I dont know if you guys have heard of thd Sally ann test,

I am guessing it is common knowledge, but it is here

https://youtu.be/wp0rQ18gJUw

anyway I watched a video about it and got it wrong despite being an ADuLT level 1

It must be so mucg harder fr kids- esp level 2 or 3

Even now in my mind if I try to recreate the test I still want to say the wrong answer - I know intellectually now that it is wrong

but my instinct is urging me to that answer still.

This theory of mind thing goes a long way towards explaining all my other troubles. if my brain is saying one thing assuming a certain response, and ppl react differently of course trouble will arise

Don't beat yourself up! The Sally-Anne Test is rigged; it's designed to set you up to fail. Not even that, the wording sometimes varies. Such as: "Where will Sally look for her ball?" vs. "Where will Sally find her ball?" (I do wonder how it's worded in languages other than English.) Even more so, it doesn't specify whether she will "initially" vs. "eventually" look for/find her ball. Another variation is making test characters dolls, rather than people, which is further meant to trip you up, by throwing pretend play, imagination, and/or suspension of disbelief into the mix.

Worst of all, if you ask the shrink for clarification, they won't give it to you! :evil: They'll just manipulate and/or pressure you into answering, causing you to panic, causing you to give the wrong answer. It's about deliberate ambiguity in an uncomfortable atmosphere, all meant to trip you up! Your only defense is always, always, ALWAYS say "in her basket". Even if it doesn't make sense to you. It's like telling a cop you didn't drink tonight.

TL;DR: It's not your fault, and never was. Shrinks set up the Sally-Anne Test this way.



Trogluddite
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18 Oct 2018, 9:41 pm

Aspie1 wrote:
The Sally-Anne Test is rigged; it's designed to set you up to fail...

Um, yes, that's the entire point of the test. To someone with typical Theory of Mind, for all those variations, the obvious, instinctive answer is the one that they are looking for. Whether "typical ToM" is a good, bad, useful, or worthless concept is a different debate, and possibly one that blooiejagwa is interested in, but you're basically just criticising water for being wet. She took the test voluntarily and is curious why the results are as they are, as it seems to explain something to her, so cheating would have been rather pointless.

blooiejagwa wrote:
I still want to say the wrong answer - I know intellectually now that it is wrong

I think that this is the essence of masking and why it is so hard. It's having to constantly stop yourself to think, after discovering that your instinctive responses give you the wrong impression of what the people around you are really up to. I think it also explains why masking doesn't seem to get any easier as I get older; like I've reached a level that I can't go beyond. Most people seem to think that the "right" way to see things would just sink in after a while and become instinctive, but I find that it doesn't very much. Sometimes a repetitive habit might form, but, as you say, the "wrong" answer is still the one that usually comes to mind first. Neuro-typical social instincts don't get it right all the time either, of course, but at least they don't have to stop to think twice for every little thing.


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blooiejagwa
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18 Oct 2018, 10:08 pm

Aspie1 thanks for the concern- I guess I forgot to explain that I’m trying to understand what it is about being around people that feels like torture to me.
Esp social situations that are complicated,
why does it take me so long to reconcile someone’s real motives
with what I assumed of them?
EG I assumed my lawyer was v honest and sincere despite finding him frightening,
Then 70,000 dollars later,
:!: when I found from other lawyers that he was being unethical with bad advice and actually helped create a stressful and bad situation, without helping when he could have,
I still have trouble accepting why he would do that. Since his motive/intentions m remains unclear to me it makes me want to question the reality That logically must be true - because it’s so difficult to distinguish between what I thought and what he thought .. figure it out
Etc


I think theory of mind/mind-blindness might be the reason.

Trogluddite- thanks for explaining it so well.



Aspie1
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18 Oct 2018, 10:38 pm

Trogluddite wrote:
Um, yes, that's the entire point of the test. To someone with typical Theory of Mind, for all those variations, the obvious, instinctive answer is the one that they are looking for. Whether "typical ToM" is a good, bad, useful, or worthless concept is a different debate, and possibly one that blooiejagwa is interested in, but you're basically just criticising water for being wet. She took the test voluntarily and is curious why the results are as they are, as it seems to explain something to her, so cheating would have been rather pointless.

Well, yeah, I guess. But now that the truth is out---that the correct answer is "in her [Sally's] basket"---the test ain't so "valid" now, hehe. Shrinks will come up with more variations, but they all boil down to: "How would the kid who takes/took my lunch money answer it?" If you, the aspie, can answer that question, you can pass any psych test.

Think of other psych tests. Take the Rorschach Test. Correct answers to it are on Wikipedia, for crying out loud! (It lapsed into the public domain when its copyright expired.) Use lots of peaceful human, animal, or nature references in your answers, and you pass! If an inkblot remotely human, say it's friends interacting. If it looks vaguely animal-like, talk about a "good" animal, like a bear or a swan. NEVER mention anything violent or threatening. And UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES talk about the whitespace in inkblots; it means you're schizophrenic.

Thematic Apperception Test, easy too: come up with a gushing, emotional soap opera script about the sequence of picture you see, and you're golden! Study a list of emotions, available on any basic psychology website, and use those words as much as you can stomach it. The only catch is stick with "good" or neutral emotions, unless the pictures show a truly "bad" topic, like someone being bullied. Better yet, pretend not to have noticed the "bad" elements.

Situations Test. You will be asked banal questions like "If your neighbor's house is on fire, what would you do?" If you say "Call 911 (or 112 in EU and UK)", the shrink will try to trip you up by saying "What else can you do?" Don't fall for it! Don't wrack your brain. Don't try to be creative. Don't try to be funny, like "pee on it". All pf these things will work against you. Just stick with plain old stubbornness. Say: "I feel it's the only answer. Can we do the next question, please?" Using the word "feel" will shut the shrink up like a ball gag.

Blacky Pictures Test, the one with cartoony basset hounds in human settings, similar idea: you're supposed identify with the black dog (other dogs are white or light gray), and use lots of "good feelings" words about the situation it's in. If a picture shows the black dog being left out of a group, saying something like: "He asked if he could play with them, but they said no, so he's relaxing by himself for a while. He'll ask again later, or try to join another group."

House-Tree-Person Test, where you draw a house, a tree, and a person. You'll be judged on every little detail, from the pencil colors you use, to the grunts you make while drawing. Saying "I'm a bad drawer" will ding you on the test and/or anger the shrink. If at all possible, ask to be exempted from it. Lie and say your hand hurts because it got hit by a ball in the park, and you don't want the results skewed by an injury. (Plus, playing a sports game in the park makes you look "normal" and athletic, which will weigh in your favor as well.) Barring that, just draw the best you can, and accept the fact that you'll score poorly.



Trogluddite
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19 Oct 2018, 12:24 am

^ Yes, deception is possible if you know the canonical responses to such tests; there's nothing remotely controversial about that. If you want to start a "How and why to troll psychologists" thread, go right ahead!


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Aspie1
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19 Oct 2018, 7:15 pm

Trogluddite wrote:
^ Yes, deception is possible if you know the canonical responses to such tests; there's nothing remotely controversial about that. If you want to start a "How and why to troll psychologists" thread, go right ahead!

What's so bad about trolling shrinks? It can't be any worse than what they do to us aspies. That is, ask how something made us feel, refuse to accept "I don't know", then when we do give an answer, turn around and accuse us of lying. As well as use tests that are rigged against us.



Joe90
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Yesterday, 6:26 am

It's OK, when I done it as an adult I already knew the answer but I still stared at the wrong box when Sally comes back in to get her ball. It was probably because I knew where the ball was and seemed to just be focused on the ball instead of the dolls.

But my TOM is literally pretty good. I use it instinctively in everyday life without much trouble.


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Aspie1
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Yesterday, 8:39 am

Joe90 wrote:
It's OK, when I done it as an adult I already knew the answer but I still stared at the wrong box when Sally comes back in to get her ball. It was probably because I knew where the ball was and seemed to just be focused on the ball instead of the dolls.

What the test makers are too stupid to realize, or are deliberately ignoring, is that aspies have strong deceit detectors. That is, they can tell, the dolls are just as inanimate as the ball, and no amount of imagination or suspending disbelief can override that simple fact. Not to mention, very few boys would be interested in dolls, so it's totally normal that they'll be looking at the ball. The very action the test makers say is "wrong".

Some version of the test use real girls/women, either adults or same age as the test subjects. Again, boys under the age of puberty won't be interested in girls, either. Now, if they had "Baywatch" actresses reenacting the test, and the test makers asked me "Where will Sally look for her ball?", my reaction will be "What ball?" :D Or, I'd make a dirty joke out of the wrong answer "In Anne's box", just to mess with the test makers.



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Yesterday, 10:37 am

I think I would get it wrong, too. I get terribly anxious when complete strangers evaluate me. (Sometimes even people I know well, too.)



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Yesterday, 11:01 am

I've always thought this was an interesting issue, and I'd like to read more detailed discussions of it by psychologists. I don't have any trouble with the test as an adult, and as far as I know I wouldn't have as a kid (although it wasn't around then).

But I think there are related situations that have certainly caused problems for me, and I'd like to know if they have also been tested somehow. For example, suppose you and another person (A and B) are assigned to work on a task -- improving a process, for example. Now if I'm person A, I'll look at the situation I'll do X, Y, and Z because that will obviously improve the process. Person B will tell me that's wrong, because part Y will make the boss look bad. But our task wasn't "make the boss look good" (which is a perfectly reasonable assignment) -- our task was "improve the process" (it may have been the boss himself who gave that instruction). Somehow I was supposed to "know" hidden information that wasn't part of the instructions (we were told "improve the process" but that really meant "make the boss look good").

This is a kind of "Reverse Sally/Ann," where it's the NT people who assume we "know" hidden or tacit information that's never been made explicit. In both cases, one party is assuming the other party has access to hidden information; it's just different information in each case.


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Aspie1
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Yesterday, 11:08 pm

IstominFan wrote:
I think I would get it wrong, too. I get terribly anxious when complete strangers evaluate me. (Sometimes even people I know well, too.)

Those tests are easy, if you're an adult. Because then, you understand the inherent purpose of them, you kind of know what answers you're "supposed to" give, and know how to suspend disbelief, such as when test pictures look and feel childish to you. (Although I do wonder if they use different pictures for adults 18+, like with workers in a conference room, rather than with kids in a sandbox.) Or if you're anything like me, you can just memorize the right answers. Not to mention, there's no upsetting your parents when you don't get "good" test results.

But it's not about anxiety. It's about KNOWING you're being deceived, but having your hands completely tied. That is, you lack the guile and life experience to figure out where the lies are, you can't find out the truth from the shrink (they'll refuse to tell you or patronizingly dodge the question), and you can't call out the shrink on the lies because it'll ding you on the test results (for being "difficult"). I mean, think about it: the test pictures you have to make up a story about look blatantly childish, and the test itself feels blatantly childish. It's something you used to do in kindergarten, and you're 12 years old! WHY would a shrink give such a childish test to a 12-year-old?! Is it just me, or would this feel sketchy to you? I mean, are he/she trying to demean you or age-regress you? And when you verbalize this concern, the shrink brushes you off and tells you to just make up a story. Sure enough, it turns out to be "wrong"! :evil:

Darmok wrote:
But our task wasn't "make the boss look good" (which is a perfectly reasonable assignment) -- our task was "improve the process" (it may have been the boss himself who gave that instruction). Somehow I was supposed to "know" hidden information that wasn't part of the instructions (we were told "improve the process" but that really meant "make the boss look good").

This is a kind of "Reverse Sally/Ann," where it's the NT people who assume we "know" hidden or tacit information that's never been made explicit. In both cases, one party is assuming the other party has access to hidden information; it's just different information in each case.

I used to fall into that trap at work early on in my career. I'm grateful to have had bosses who were understanding about this quirk of mine, although my social skills were mostly passable by the time I started my first job. Today, I view "making my boss looks good" as part of my job description. I mean, he signs my paychecks and puts up with my quirks, aspie and otherwise. The least I can do to return the favor is make him look good to his boss.



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Today, 12:34 am

In the Sally Ann test the child is asked where will Sally look for her marble. Seeing has she hasn't lost her marble she doesn't have to look for it. Because the words 'look for' are used it suggests it's lost so the child chooses the only other option of where she can look for it. You are not going to look for something where you last left it , you are just going to get it. IMO the children in this video are not wrong as the only place Sally can look for her marble is in Ann's box. All the NT kids are wrong :twisted:

Maybe I'm just too literal :lol:


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Today, 12:55 am

My mum says I took the SallyAnne test when I was about 5 but she can't remember if I passed it or not. I wish she could remember, because I want to know if I passed it or not. I hope I did, even though passing it doesn't mean I don't have ASD, but it will still make me feel better about myself to know that I was in the 20% of ASD kids that did pass it.

Yes, 20 years ago I was diagnosed and I'm hoping there's still a chance I was misdiagnosed. :lol:


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