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Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 9:10 am

...and Aspies exchange information.

For us, the main goal of conversation is to exchange information.

For NTs, the main goal is to DO something. Such as establishing who is above whom in power in the relationship, or put you in a specific mood that's beneficial to them, or tell you how interested / disinterested they are in you getting closer / distancing from them.

I was in my mid-forties when I made this huge discovery (recently) and it was only then that I realized how off I had been all my life in verbal exchanges with people. Nowadays, when someone says something, I ask myself what they are DOING rather than what they are saying. Before, I used to think that NTs, just like me, used conversation to communicate/express their feelings and thoughts. Boy was I wrong! Exchanging info, expressing one's feelings and thoughts is only TWO of the many things NTs DO through conversation.

Eg: Nowadays I know that if a co-worker comes to my office in the morning to say good morning, it means: "I want to have a closer cooperation relationship with you" and not "I'm interested in you having a good morning so I'm here wishing you one".

My therapist told me years ago (and I didn't get it back then ) that when you rant to someone, you're actually attacking that person, even if you're ranting about something not related to that person. Because what you're DOING when ranting is expressing anger, then it's taken as being angry at the listener.

Also, when you dismiss something a person says as unimportant, such as a movie they've seen, what you're actually DOING is dismissing the person, telling them you're not interested in more closeness with them. When you're interested in getting closer, you say things like öh yeah, wonderful movie!". You show more enthusiasm for their ideas the more closeness you want. The intention is not to exchange opinions about the movie, but to establish the quantity and quality of the relationship between the 2 people.

All the above is nauseatingly obvious to any NT and astoundingly new to me.


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ouinon
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02 Jan 2009, 9:27 am

Totally get that.

I learned to do the NT-talk thing in my late teens with the help of alcohol, ( and kept it up for about 7 years until I had breakdown !), and can still do it for an hour or two at a time, ( before burn-out ) if I want to. But I don't often want to, because it feels as if I am not saying what is true.

Like you say about the bit of "chat" about a film. How am I supposed to say anything true when "getting on with"/doing the NT talk seems to involve some sort of exchange of signals in which content is far less important than form?

For a number of years now I have felt almost nauseated whenever I do the "NT-talk" with anyone. It is soooo successful, sooo powerful, so smooth, and yet requires me to say one lie/half-truth, pleasing/creepy thing after another.

Weird. Really weird.

.



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02 Jan 2009, 9:37 am

Thnk you for this. I'll try to bear it in mind, although I'm not sure if I knew this before or not.

I try and notice it next time I talk to someone.


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Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 9:40 am

ouinon wrote:
How am I supposed to say anything true when "getting on with"/doing the NT talk seems to involve some sort of exchange of signals in which content is far less important than form?


That's exactly the issue: we insist on using conversation to exchange info. We can do that here on WP, but with NTs we have to understand that, whether we like it or not, we can't use conversation to exchange info. Conversation is used to do many different things, of which exchanging real, truthful, relevant info is only a very minor, almost unused one. In fact, I've observed that exchange of truthful, relevant info is a priviledge one has if one has a preferred role in someone's life (such as regular patron, sibling, close friend, key subordinate, etc.)

Someone called me from the garage to tell me I had to do timing on my car. I asked him to transfer me to the garage owner and main mechanic. Both this someone and I used conversation to DO something. What he did: an upsale (an upsale is when a customer is planning on buying X and you manage to sell them X+Y only by the use of conversation). What I did: decline the sale (asking to talk to someone higher than him was my way of saying I'm not interested in whatever he has to say, therefore not buying into his upsale).


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ouinon
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02 Jan 2009, 9:48 am

Greentea wrote:
I've observed that exchange of truthful, relevant info is a privilege one has if one has a preferred role in someone's life (such as regular patron, sibling, close friend, key subordinate, etc.)

That's interesting; that you use the word "privilege" for that/AS kind of communication.

Hmm ... goes off thinking ...

.



cubedemon6073
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02 Jan 2009, 9:53 am

Greentea wrote:
...and Aspies exchange information.

For us, the main goal of conversation is to exchange information.

For NTs, the main goal is to DO something. Such as establishing who is above whom in power in the relationship, or put you in a specific mood that's beneficial to them, or tell you how interested / disinterested they are in you getting closer / distancing from them.

I was in my mid-forties when I made this huge discovery (recently) and it was only then that I realized how off I had been all my life in verbal exchanges with people. Nowadays, when someone says something, I ask myself what they are DOING rather than what they are saying. Before, I used to think that NTs, just like me, used conversation to communicate/express their feelings and thoughts. Boy was I wrong! Exchanging info, expressing one's feelings and thoughts is only TWO of the many things NTs DO through conversation.

Eg: Nowadays I know that if a co-worker comes to my office in the morning to say good morning, it means: "I want to have a closer cooperation relationship with you" and not "I'm interested in you having a good morning so I'm here wishing you one".

My therapist told me years ago (and I didn't get it back then ) that when you rant to someone, you're actually attacking that person, even if you're ranting about something not related to that person. Because what you're DOING when ranting is expressing anger, then it's taken as being angry at the listener.

Also, when you dismiss something a person says as unimportant, such as a movie they've seen, what you're actually DOING is dismissing the person, telling them you're not interested in more closeness with them. When you're interested in getting closer, you say things like öh yeah, wonderful movie!". You show more enthusiasm for their ideas the more closeness you want. The intention is not to exchange opinions about the movie, but to establish the quantity and quality of the relationship between the 2 people.

All the above is nauseatingly obvious to any NT and astoundingly new to me.


Wow, GreenTea I did not know I was attacking the person by ranting. This is new to me and I'm 29. All, I'm really interested in is exchanging information and talking about the information. If you notice, NTs are very much always on the go type of people. There is no time for thinking with them and to discuss anything in depth. They want to do, do, do. The truth is it's not natural for us to live this fast-paced, ad-hoc life style. It isn't for me at least.

GreenTea, I bet I could learn a lot from you if you're willing to share your experiences with me and I can share my experiences with you.



Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 9:54 am

Interestingly, the word "privilege", apart from the well-known meaning I applied here, has this meaning in Webster's: (law) the right to refuse to divulge information obtained in a confidential relationship I think this reinforces my point.


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Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 9:57 am

cube, all my ""pearls of wisdom"" are in my posts. You can click on my profile and find links to all my threads and posts there, and choose by topic. You're also, of course, welcome to pm me if you wish.


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sunshower
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02 Jan 2009, 10:10 am

Thankyou so much Greentea!! This new understanding has been on the borderline of my consciousness for a while, and your words finally made it all click together in my brain. OMG it makes so much SENSE.

I never thought of the whole attacking thing either, but I had got the idea that more was going on that just exchanging information, but as to exactly what that "more" was I was a little vague, but guessed at friendliness and dislike/romantic attraction being expressed through tone and body language (some of which I picked up on through more careful observation than I used to, some of which I still missed).


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Greyhound
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02 Jan 2009, 10:17 am

Maybe this is also why I say random things like saying things that I see (the one I always think of is when I said, 'the gravestones are all against the wall' because I thought it was unusual and my family (who were in the car with me) said that was a realy pointless thing to say).


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sunshower
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02 Jan 2009, 10:19 am

Greyhound wrote:
Maybe this is also why I say random things like saying things that I see (the one I always think of is when I said, 'the gravestones are all against the wall' because I thought it was unusual and my family (who were in the car with me) said that was a realy pointless thing to say).


OMG I do that all the time, it is one of my most well known quirks amongst my friends. I guess I love to share information. :lol:


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ruveyn
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02 Jan 2009, 10:26 am

I agree. I eventually got the point, but I came by it empirically. I did not need the advice of a "professional". My motive for conversation is still information exchange and the chance to either learn something new, test a hypothesis against someone else' judgment, and sometimes to teach something, if my input is invited. I learned (painfully) that uninvited didacticism tends to annoy the NTs (enough Data!). As a result I no longer offer lessons unless invited to (explicitly or implicitly). It took me forty years to catch on to how to live among the NTs cordially (I am married to one and most of my children and grandchildren are NT). Sometimes I feel like a Jew at a revival meeting, however.

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Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 10:27 am

One more example:
When an NT says: "I despise black people" he's DOING something, not expressing his opinion about black people, and not trying to get into a relevant discussion of the phenomenon of human races. What he's doing is trying to place himself above you and the other listeners in the pecking order, by instilling fear in you (showing you they don't fear others' reactions to their unpopular opinions and that he can turn against anyone at any time with any stupid bias, so beware.) Highly prejudiced, hateful people are feared (if often unconsciously), so they're left alone and not messed with (thus, their "higher" status in the pecking order, because they get away with things that others don't). Chances are, if you confront this person in a totally different setting and remind them of their despise of black people, they won't know what you're talking about, they won't even remember they said such a thing. Because they weren't expressing something, they were DOING something.


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ThisIsNotMyRealName
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02 Jan 2009, 10:28 am

Greentea wrote:
...and Aspies exchange information.

For us, the main goal of conversation is to exchange information.

For NTs, the main goal is to DO something. Such as establishing who is above whom in power in the relationship, or put you in a specific mood that's beneficial to them, or tell you how interested / disinterested they are in you getting closer / distancing from them.

I was in my mid-forties when I made this huge discovery (recently) and it was only then that I realized how off I had been all my life in verbal exchanges with people. Nowadays, when someone says something, I ask myself what they are DOING rather than what they are saying. Before, I used to think that NTs, just like me, used conversation to communicate/express their feelings and thoughts. Boy was I wrong! Exchanging info, expressing one's feelings and thoughts is only TWO of the many things NTs DO through conversation.

Eg: Nowadays I know that if a co-worker comes to my office in the morning to say good morning, it means: "I want to have a closer cooperation relationship with you" and not "I'm interested in you having a good morning so I'm here wishing you one".

My therapist told me years ago (and I didn't get it back then ) that when you rant to someone, you're actually attacking that person, even if you're ranting about something not related to that person. Because what you're DOING when ranting is expressing anger, then it's taken as being angry at the listener.

Also, when you dismiss something a person says as unimportant, such as a movie they've seen, what you're actually DOING is dismissing the person, telling them you're not interested in more closeness with them. When you're interested in getting closer, you say things like öh yeah, wonderful movie!". You show more enthusiasm for their ideas the more closeness you want. The intention is not to exchange opinions about the movie, but to establish the quantity and quality of the relationship between the 2 people.

All the above is nauseatingly obvious to any NT and astoundingly new to me.

I think you've extrapolated waaay to far here.
You are not entirely AS, just as no-one is entirely NT.
IOW, everyone's a bit NT and a little bit AS.
Yes, that's right .... EVERYONE.

The idea that expressing different aesthetic tastes from others means you're rejecting them is extremely wide of the mark.
I have friends with views to which I'm totally opposed and we enjoy healthy debate.
They are not their views.
Nobody is.

Your epiphanic revelation isn't one, because it's not valid.
It's just that you've gained a little more perspective.
The goal posts remain where they've always been.



sunshower
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02 Jan 2009, 10:30 am

God, this is so fascinating.

It's rather an ironic topic in fact, because it's so aspergerian in nature, in that it is a conversation strongly focused on the purpose of exchanging highly useful information, whereas the discussion itself is about conversations being used to convey feelings and status as opposed to information.


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Greentea
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02 Jan 2009, 10:32 am

What I love about the WP forums is that people share info, thoughts and feelings, rather than DO something via the content of their posts.


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