AS: always figuring out what could go wrong?

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Shebakoby
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02 Nov 2009, 2:21 am

I was told by the Neuropsychologist that diagnosed me, that people with Asperger's Syndrome will come up with a million reasons why something will not work. This of course was in the context of, finding my own place to live. But I suspect she means many other things as well.

How many of you out there on the spectrum find yourself going "Oh this won't work because....x"?

But more than that, how many of you go "X will never work because of y" and turn out to be completely correct? :P



Aspie1
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02 Nov 2009, 2:34 am

Let me be the first one to chime in: YES, DEFINITELY. In my group of friends, whenever I predict something going wrong when we're headed somewhere, one of two things happen: either my prediction comes true with 90% accuracy or I'm completely wrong and everything goes wonderfully. So when I start making predictions, my friend tell me to keep them to myself (in good nature, of course), since they're superstitious in that sense.



Shebakoby
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02 Nov 2009, 2:39 am

People such as my parents tend to believe that this tendency is some cleverly constructed way to get out of doing things.

Whereas, that's not entirely the case in reality. If I have a reasonable expectation that something will nullify the effort or even cause negative effects not just neutralized effects, I am loathe to do something, especially if not doing whatever at least has the effect of maintaining the status quo.

(for instance I see no point in moving out, to live on my own, if it ends up that my parents have to pay my rent for me. It makes no sense to look for a roommate if the person ends up being a thief or just plain can't get along with me.)



FeralAspie
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02 Nov 2009, 3:10 am

I'm always like that when it comes to things involving people. I need to go through every scenario so that I am rehearsed as to what I should say or do in any given situation. Needless to say all these scenarios gives countless things that could go 'wrong' and therefore the safest thing is not to act.



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02 Nov 2009, 3:14 am

Yes. Even my GP said: "That's your problem, always thinking too much about what might happen."



JohnnyD017
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02 Nov 2009, 4:03 am

I dont think its AS i think its more about social anxiety. Which all people with AS have, of course, so that fact doesnt really make a difference... :roll:



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02 Nov 2009, 5:16 am

JohnnyD017 wrote:
I dont think its AS i think its more about social anxiety. Which all people with AS have, of course,


No they don't.


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tweety_fan
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02 Nov 2009, 5:38 am

I do that sometimes.

It has turned out to be completely correct sometimes and other times it was completely wrong.



zer0netgain
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02 Nov 2009, 7:34 am

I don't know if this is the benefit of AS, but I've always had a knack for analyzing a situation and seeing all of the permutations of what could happen...good and bad.

I get labeled as a pessimist for it, but I figure you might as well be prepared for what could go wrong.



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02 Nov 2009, 8:55 am

Yeah, I think about what could go wrong with things. Usually a lot can, or at least that's what I believe.


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02 Nov 2009, 10:41 am

Yes, I do that all the time. My mother calls me "doom and gloom".


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02 Nov 2009, 11:12 am

I always figure out all the things that could go wrong and then I take it to the next level and obsess about possible solutions. Then I come up with new problems attached to my solutions, which I then have to resolve (in detail of course). I spend entire days, sometimes weeks like this, my head a complete bee-hive.



Shebakoby
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02 Nov 2009, 11:23 am

its funny how the Neuropsychologist was all acting like we had to completely disregard my instincts as to what could go wrong with any situation.



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02 Nov 2009, 11:32 am

I definitely have a high awareness of what can go wrong, though I doubt it's got a lot to do with social anxiety, as it happens whether the plan in question has a social element to it or not.

I read something by an Aspie guy - he was at a meeting where somebody asked "what could possibly go wrong?" and he replied by listing all the things he could think of that could go wrong. Apparently that wasn't what they wanted to hear - they were seeking reassurance and support for their plan rather than a literal answer to their question. So the guy adjusted his behaviour so he'd fit in better at the meetings. Frankly that bothers me, and I wonder how groups avoid treading on banana skins if they don't want to see the banana skin map before they start walking. :?

I suspect that NTs are fond of collective "psyching up" exercises to spin all the doubt from their heads before they tackle anything complicated or difficult, and when they're doing that, anybody trying to point out the truth to them isn't going to win any friends. But I can't psyche myself up to believe a plan is flawless. I'm really not uncomfortable with an honest assessment of the risks......I can decide from that whether those risks are reasonable (in the light of the required investment and the possible benefits of success), and once I've made my decision to go ahead, I don't feel daunted by my awareness that it might not work. In fact knowing the possible pitfalls can help me to aviod them while I'm performing the task.

But I also probably still apply too much negativity to ideas in general.....I suspect that there are a lot of things worth trying that I dismiss out of hand. Mostly I find I can make progress with that by thinking carefully about the pros and cons of whatever idea it is.....most of the negativity seems to come from the times when I don't really give the matter detailed thought, it's more like an emotional response to begin with, and when I look more closely at that, I often find there was something spooking me that really isn't so dangerous.

What's important is to be at least doing something.....in principle I've got nothing against the idea of a life of inactivity, as long as the food and shelter etc. don't run out, but in practice the food and shelter does run out (for most of us), and if we want anything to get better, there's no finer method than to have a go at improving things. So if I'm not actually trying anything out any more, I'm not really living, and I can expect my life to get worse unless I get off my butt and work on it.



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02 Nov 2009, 11:40 am

PS Science research is one area in which great rigour in foreseeing the weaknesses of experimental design is highly valued. A good scientist will be grateful if somebody points out objective problems in the plans, because a flawed experiment can be a huge waste of resources.

In today's risk-averse society, I'd be surprised if Aspies stood out as being particularly unusual with their awareness of what could go wrong.