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dryope
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22 Jan 2017, 10:42 am

Yes -- dealing with people without the mask is not easy. For me, it was almost a full-time job for several years to figure this stuff out. And when I get burned out from stress or too much social interaction, I can't manage much of anything.

A big part of this for me has been to be honest about my limitations with people. I accept that I will always be "weird," but if they know to expect that, then they are more accepting. So I freely tell people that I'm not good at picking up social cues, and that I sometimes don't express my feelings in my voice. This is Tony Attwood's advice: let people know what you're not good at, so you can set expectations. But I've also just plain told people I have Asperger's in some cases -- although for more sensitive situations I'll say I'm an "introvert" or that I "have ADD" (I have a lot of overlap with the ADD crowd, but the DSM of course makes the two mutually exclusive, so technically that's not true).

Watching characters on TV like Abed on "Community" and Rosa in "Brooklyn 99" (not necessarily on the spectrum, but there's a lot of overlap) made me feel a lot better about being honest about these things. I know these are fake worlds, but these characters are presented as accepted in their communities, and it really made me realize that it's other people's lack of acceptance that's the problem, not that I'm not a prototypical example of our mainstream culture.

In reality, almost all NT women really dislike me all the same. I can't change that, but I can appeal to their mothering instincts. When we have a longstanding work relationship, I tell the NT women these things about myself -- whichever version I think they can handle, and Asperger's is becoming more and more what I choose -- their attitude toward me really changes, and they become protective.

People who are on the spectrum in a minor way, just traits here and there, really do work well with me, and we have a grand time. I've gotten better at spotting them, and I see them just everywhere now. Asperger actually thought it was more like 1 in 10 had recognizable traits on the spectrum, and that really does seem to be the case where I am (an academic setting).


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Eclipse247
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26 Jan 2017, 2:29 pm

dryope wrote:
Yes -- dealing with people without the mask is not easy. For me, it was almost a full-time job for several years to figure this stuff out. And when I get burned out from stress or too much social interaction, I can't manage much of anything.

A big part of this for me has been to be honest about my limitations with people. I accept that I will always be "weird," but if they know to expect that, then they are more accepting. So I freely tell people that I'm not good at picking up social cues, and that I sometimes don't express my feelings in my voice. This is Tony Attwood's advice: let people know what you're not good at, so you can set expectations. But I've also just plain told people I have Asperger's in some cases -- although for more sensitive situations I'll say I'm an "introvert" or that I "have ADD" (I have a lot of overlap with the ADD crowd, but the DSM of course makes the two mutually exclusive, so technically that's not true).

Watching characters on TV like Abed on "Community" and Rosa in "Brooklyn 99" (not necessarily on the spectrum, but there's a lot of overlap) made me feel a lot better about being honest about these things. I know these are fake worlds, but these characters are presented as accepted in their communities, and it really made me realize that it's other people's lack of acceptance that's the problem, not that I'm not a prototypical example of our mainstream culture.

In reality, almost all NT women really dislike me all the same. I can't change that, but I can appeal to their mothering instincts. When we have a longstanding work relationship, I tell the NT women these things about myself -- whichever version I think they can handle, and Asperger's is becoming more and more what I choose -- their attitude toward me really changes, and they become protective.

People who are on the spectrum in a minor way, just traits here and there, really do work well with me, and we have a grand time. I've gotten better at spotting them, and I see them just everywhere now. Asperger actually thought it was more like 1 in 10 had recognizable traits on the spectrum, and that really does seem to be the case where I am (an academic setting).

I watched a show about how overloaded hospitals are here in the UK last night and I thought I saw some traits in a consultant and a histopathologist.



kraftiekortie
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26 Jan 2017, 9:52 pm

I'm not high-functioning enough to have been a real success in my life.

I should have done better than I have done.

I think my "disorder" interfered, somewhat, with my ability to lead people.



Biscuitman
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27 Jan 2017, 5:16 pm

Glad I found this thread.

I feel I am near the top end of high functioning.

I was diagnosed 4 months ago and no one apart from my wife knows. I will never tell family or anyone else simply as they wont believe me. I have done reasonably well at work and am married, have a daughter and own my own house. I think I would generally pass for NT but would just be seen as very quiet and someone who keeps themselves to themselves.

My AS issues I guess are that I mostly just want to be on my own and don't talk to people much at all. I am fine one on one, if I am comfortable with the person, and in fact can do quite well like that but any more and I find it a bit overwhelming and just close down a bit. Crowds of people are something that I try and keep away from and I used to drink quite a lot to feel more normal/confident but try not to do that so much now as I want to be fit and healthy and I sleep badly when I drink.

I had some big issues with food as a kid where I refused to eat much else but a few things for years then as a teenager I had bulimia and anorexia but they felt more like obsessions, I have some food texture and smell issues now, I just seem like I don't vary my diet much. Also find clothes quite uncomfortable and fiddle with them a lot, shoes and socks are horrible, I get a bit panicky over them as my feet feel trapped! :lol:

Also the usual crippling anxiety.

Also had 2 friends from my youth that I kept in touch with and met up with separately 3 or 4 times a year and one now won't respond to my text messages. Nothing for 9 months which makes me feel sad. :cry: as they are my only mates.

How do I make more friends when I dont like typical socialising? We get messages around work about social nights out but they are 20-30 of them (nice enough people) getting beered up in town. No thanks!



Here
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28 Jan 2017, 8:09 pm

On being high-functioning? Long story short: "That not able enough, yet not disabled enough" perplexing (caught in the middle) never-never land of sorts!"

At times, I can experience difficulties understanding both neurotypicals (NTs), and others with Aspergers (AS) alike.

Consensus amongst (NTs) and Aspergers (AS) alike too often remains elusive; yet boosting consensus might "break the ice" so to speak!

A suggested starting point: The discussion thread 'In-Depth Adult Life Disc. Thread Topics Often Overlooked.' viewtopic.php?t=335857

Thank-you



Sofisol612
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16 Feb 2017, 3:09 pm

I like to consider myself high-functioning, yes. I am a young adult who is studying at college and doing quite well. I am doing some volunteer work in a museum on my special interest (partly as a hobby, but also to gain some self-confidence, as I know I will need it to get a real job later). I still live with my parents, but that's considered normal in my country for people under 25. I have only one friend that I don't see very often, but can usually have a good time talking to my classmates or coworkers, as long as the conversation focuses on something related to work, studies, or some book or TV show I've read/watched.

As for enjoying life, I think I'm usually happy. I do have some depressions, mainly when I'm stressed, but I know how to get out of those moods: I only have to do some exercise, like walking or running while listening to music, and do some work or activity that keeps my mind busy. It works greatly short-term. I might get up feeling down the following day, but if I keep doing the same, the feeling eventually goes away.


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nephets
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16 Feb 2017, 3:28 pm

I have been told I'm high functioning (by the lady who diagnosed me). I have wife of 12 years and two boys (9 & 7). I have been continuously employed fro 19 years and am NOT rich. However, CBT has helped with anxiety and I would recommend Prozac for this as well. It also allows me to deal with some social situations much better and seems to take the edge off the obsessive side of the condition. Life has moments of happiness (mainly when there are no NT's about).



Lunella
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16 Feb 2017, 5:12 pm

I'm really high functioning but I used to be terrible. Trial and error got me to the point I'm at now. Well, that and wanting to murder everyone. Anger gave me motivation to learn body language, charisma and generally what things mean. I run my own business now and I'm looking for a second side job.

I still make better friends with other autism people than I do NTs though.


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AngryAngryAngry
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18 Feb 2017, 12:36 am

kraftiekortie wrote:
I think my "disorder" interfered, somewhat, with my ability to lead people.


Leading people is extremely difficult, you need to watch your back, support, defend, pretend to be average, show that you are not average, gossip, bully, threaten, empathise, be harsh and lenient. And when you've mastered every one - you get stabbed in the back out of the blue!

I'm very happy in life. Especially when alone, my aim is to be financially independent enough to avoid interractions with people (and especially social support services).
I can easily have smalltalk with people. I do not suffer from any anxiety at all.
Though I do make body language mistakes and being someone that others want to be friends with is a whole other issue. Not including the facts that I do not drink, enjoy parties, sports or agree with the groups majority opinions (often opinions that the media spouts).
I wouldn't mind a friend or two and even a girlfriend would be nice.
However people are of very low intelligence, deceptive, and let their emotions determine decision making.
I used to have great expectations of people - sadly those have all been dashed.
In the past I felt a little lonely, but now that I know the truth I'm happy alone.
Before I knew I had Aspergers, I had these fantasies about being the only survivor in an empty world.
I do not know my IQ, however the tests are too narrow as there are many forms eg. EQ, streetsmarts, Linguistics, Mathematics, Creative intelligence, even body language/perception of minor things/listening to ones imstincts (including horse whisperer types & deceptive psychic types - who play people).
I am able to read into what people are implying sometimes, when I need to assess their true motivations & true personality.



AlanMooresBeard
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17 Mar 2017, 10:01 am

I would consider myself to be quite high functioning. I have a degree and I'm also doing postgraduate study. I'm quite well-organised and I'm quite good at saving money every month. I am capable of holding down a job and I have also been volunteering in a capacity related to my postgrad study for several years. I can usually manage small talk with people for short periods and I'm able to socialise with work colleagues for at least short periods of time. I am able to navigate large crowds without too much difficulty and have no problems doing things like going to concerts, art galleries or theatre shows. In terms of AS, I am anxious quite often and I also have problems with OCD. I sometimes experience depression particularly when I've been out of work for more than a few months. I also tend to spend a lot of time on my own and don't really have many friends. That said, considering what I was like when I was 11 or 12, I've not done too badly in life so far.



NikNak
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17 Mar 2017, 10:28 pm

I'm very high functioning in that my traits are mild and I don't have a lot of the issues that others on the spectrum face. However, it would seem I still have enough going on to warrant a diagnosis.

I was probably a lot more 'obvious' when I was younger.

For various reasons though, I still struggle to function 'in the real world'.

I definitely relate to those who say it can be difficult to understand both those with AS and NT, as well as the not disabled enough/ not able enough paradigm.


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chucmccain
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03 Apr 2017, 9:53 am

I too am a high functioning aspie. I have retired from one career and started another career. Life has been very difficult for me. I was diagnosed about 18 months ago. I am on my second marriage. With the 1st marriage of 17 years my wife always asked me why I was so sad all the time. I why I did not like to make friends with the neighbors and hangout. I rather be alone with the curtains drawn to the light is dim. I was always nervous at everything I did. I plan and double plan everything. I think the worse in all my possible out comes to everything I do. I did not like affection and all that cuddling and personal contact. I discovered that I got married because I thought I was supposed to. And the same for having children was because I thought I was supposed to. My current wife knew I was different and had something going on. After the diagnosis she said I knew it.



oddnumberedcat
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02 Aug 2017, 2:06 am

Yes. The diagnosis I was given as a kid was caveated with that I was on the cuff. I was socially impaired enough to qualify, and i had restricted interests, but I was not significantly impaired, relatively speaking.

Nowadays, I am doing pretty well. I live alone, I graduated from a well-regarded college with straight As and work at a respected company doing work I enjoy. If you looked for them, I'm sure you could see the vestiges of what prompted the diagnosis in middle school. People might note I'm somewhat pedantic, can veer into being overly blunt, inadvertently offend people, and have a scary laser focus on the things important to me, at the exclusion of all else. However, none of those things scream a label in any way, although they may peg me as a little odd.

Also, as much anguish as some of those not significant but still disabling social impairments have caused me over the years, I would say some of the flip-sides of the neurology, like obsessive focus, logical thinking, verbal skills, and earnesty, have served me really well. I like to think of my neurology as a difference and not a disability, since nowadays I don't feel so disabled by it. Context matters a lot, though; even with life experience gained along the way, I'd still feel very socially deficient if I had to do high school again. (Navigating the social complexities of an all-girls school when you're not socially impaired enough to get mother hen'd, but socially impaired enough that the complexities just totally whiz by you, sucks.)



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02 Aug 2017, 9:26 pm

I seemed a lot more high-functioning than I actually am when I was younger, and now, that's becoming more apparent. I graduated from college a year and a half ago, and have only been able to get a low-paying part-time job with no opportunity for advancement. Because of this, I don't have the money to support myself if I were to live on my own. I can't drive, and I have never been in any sort of romantic relationship with anyone. No kids, of course, since being in a romantic relationship of some sort is usually necessary for that. I haven't had a close friend since I was in elementary school, and am very socially isolated now. Haven't really enjoyed life very much since I was a kid. Little pleasures like indulging in my obsessions keep me going, but I've been struggling with depression on and off for over a decade.

As far as social stuff is concerned, my problem is that my functioning level varies from day to day, or even hour to hour, depending on factors like how much sleep I've gotten, how much advanced notice I had, and how much sensory stimulation I've had that day. People see me at my best, and then assume I'm always capable of that, and if I don't do as well, it's because I'm not trying hard enough or don't care. For example, no one I've tried to tell in person has ever believed me when I tell them that when I'm very stressed or experiencing a strong emotion of any sort, I literally can't speak no matter how hard I try. It's very frustrating to keep trying my best and keep being told it isn't good enough (and my father is one of the worst offenders in that regard...).


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Voxish
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04 Aug 2017, 12:50 pm

Yes very, I don't really like the term to be honest, but I don't have a learning disability. I am a qualified teacher and just completed a post grad. I have an above average IQ. I have been married for for 27 years and have fathered 3 children. I don't have any real friends, just people I know from work, to be honest I don't want any either. I see quite enough of the rest of the planet when I leave the house, my wife has always been enough for be. I hate anyone coming to the house and will hide away in another room if at all possible, thankfully its rare when they do. My idea of the perfect job is one where I work on my own in a small cold room with low level natural light....bliss. I have had far too many jobs over the past two years and my career has taken a knock, a mixture of my autism (not coping with change, too many demands and overloads and me just plain not been able to cope with not being able to do things my way. I have been made redundant twice in the last 8 months and after running myself into the ground with this job for fear of it happening again I have shot myself in the foot, worked 60 hours a week, overloaded and had to take a month out with anxiety..not good. Anxiety is my main issue. I have learned how to behave in a professional manner at work, not to interrupt people all the time and bang on and on and on about something I am interested in, most of the time, but its hard work and the urge to do so is just under the surface and ready to burst out of me if I am not vigilant. I am not as blunt as I used to be. One of my bosses once said to be that I needed to consider the impact my words had on others, this was something of a revelation and not something which I had never considered. I thought honesty was the best policy and if someone was wrong it was my duty to tell them.


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