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ps1r3n
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12 Jan 2008, 5:44 am

A bit of background so this makes sense:
I have a friend who I suspect is also an aspie, she talks incessently about things that no one else is particularly interested in and doesn't really listen to what I'm saying. She'll often turn the conversation around to what she wants to talk about so I never really get a chance to say what I want to say and end up rushing to the end of my point which invariably gets lost in her next topic. I've learned to put up with this sort of thing and listen when other people are talking, even if I'm not very interested because it's polite and I don't want to lose friends.

Anyway, last night I was out with her and her boyfriend and we were talking about books (something I'm particularly interested in). We don't share the same tastes in books but I was listening to her really long descriptions of the books she likes and tried to also talk about the books I like. When I managed to get a spot in the conversation and name a few writers I like (which was only very short, I swear I wasn't rambling on for ages) she said to me 'OK, shut up now'. I really didn't know how to react but I was really upset when I went home and still am rather upset by it. At the time I DID shut up and just sort of remained quiet for the rest of the evening but I was really angry and upset at being spoken to like this by my friend. I do understand that this is just part of her personality and she probably doesn't even realise that it's rude but I feel like I'm being walked all over sometimes because I try really hard to listen to my friends and take turns in talking. Even though I CAN go on forever about something I'm interested in, I don't because I know how annoying it is for other people. I feel like this friend isn't interested in anything I have to say unless it leads onto another of her monologues. Do you think I should tell her that this upset me or just let it go? I know the best thing would have been to say something at the time but I never react in the best way at the time. Am I dwelling on something that isn't that important?

Thanks



SleepyDragon
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12 Jan 2008, 7:29 am

Life is too short to spend time listening to someone else's diatribes until your eyes glaze over. (Unless, of course, you've paid your tuition fees already, and can't get a refund. :wink: ) And no matter how well you try to conceal it, the strain of pretending to be interested will eventually start to show.

You need to be able to manufacture little interruptions to break up "conversations" like these.

  • "You poor thing, you must be shattered after such an experience, I should leave you in peace for a while."
  • "Gosh, you must be dying of thirst, how 'bout I duck out for a moment and get a couple bottles of soft drink or something."
  • "Oh, good grief, look how the time has gone! My life won't be worth living if I don't call so-and-so right now."
  • "I see I've caught you in the middle of something, I'd better be off, so's not to distract you any more."
  • "I must be boring you to tears! I'll have to tell you that story some other time."

Anyone with half a brain and a modest amount of sensitivity will see these conversational gambits for what they are. But as long as you remain pleasant (i.e. not sending out overt signals of hostility or panic), the interruption should be accepted without too much fuss.

But to be told flat-out to "shut up now"? Under the circumstances, that was uncalled-for.

You probably did the right thing in not saying anything at the time. In the heat of the moment it's easy to blurt out something angry that you'll regret later. However, when you are feeling calmer, you might wish to remark on what happened: "I swear I could have heard you tell me to shut up the other night! Am I imagining things?" :o :D



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12 Jan 2008, 8:30 am

She doesn't sound like desirable company. I wouldn't tolerate being told to shut up by anyone. Who does she think she is? Cheeky cow.



ps1r3n
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12 Jan 2008, 9:19 am

Quote:
You probably did the right thing in not saying anything at the time. In the heat of the moment it's easy to blurt out something angry that you'll regret later. However, when you are feeling calmer, you might wish to remark on what happened: "I swear I could have heard you tell me to shut up the other night! Am I imagining things?" :o :D


Yeah, I like it. I might try that if I ever get another word in. :D



ps1r3n
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12 Jan 2008, 9:31 am

Tequila wrote:
She doesn't sound like desirable company. I wouldn't tolerate being told to shut up by anyone. Who does she think she is? Cheeky cow.


The thing is she IS often desirable company despite the constant rambling about whatever and the often tactless remarks. Desirable in a couple of ways. 1. She's the only friend I have here so far (not the best reason to be friends I know but that's only one reason) 2. I think she really is a good person who would hate to think she'd upset anyone, I really don't think it's intentional, she just doesn't have the level of awareness I'm used to in my friends back in England. I think my level of awareness is too far the other way, I'm constantly aware that I might be boring people so I don't talk much, it borders on paranoia and very low self-esteem, I'm so used to people thinking I'm not worth talking to that I'm always expecting to be ignored or dismissed. Perhaps this clashes with how she is (blissfully unaware) and I notice it more when I'm shunted out of a conversation. It happens a lot because I have lousy social skills but it hurts when a friend does it.

Is 'shunted' a real word? I don't know but I know what I mean :D



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12 Jan 2008, 12:13 pm

ps1r3n wrote:
The thing is she IS often desirable company despite the constant rambling about whatever and the often tactless remarks. Desirable in a couple of ways. 1. She's the only friend I have here so far (not the best reason to be friends I know but that's only one reason) 2. I think she really is a good person who would hate to think she'd upset anyone, I really don't think it's intentional, she just doesn't have the level of awareness I'm used to in my friends back in England. I think my level of awareness is too far the other way, I'm constantly aware that I might be boring people so I don't talk much, it borders on paranoia and very low self-esteem, I'm so used to people thinking I'm not worth talking to that I'm always expecting to be ignored or dismissed. Perhaps this clashes with how she is (blissfully unaware) and I notice it more when I'm shunted out of a conversation. It happens a lot because I have lousy social skills but it hurts when a friend does it.

Is 'shunted' a real word? I don't know but I know what I mean :D


Oh, I understand now. You mean you feel like you're pushed aside? I hope you meet a few more people locally, though making friends with people is always so tough especially what with us being so inhibited.

I don't really have any friends either and my self-esteem isn't tops so you might say you're not in bad company.



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12 Jan 2008, 1:24 pm

i can tell you from the perspective of a person that can identify with your friend (btw, you described me to a t) i'm sure she didn't mean to be rude. i know i've said dumb things like that before, not meaning to sound like i was being rude, just smart-assy, but it has come out sounding the wrong way, and obviously then being taken the wrong way. i know i would want to be told that i had upset someone by doing this, so that i would have the chance to explain myself and apologize. i would definately say something to her about it and give her the benefit of the doubt. maybe she doesn't realize she does it.


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12 Jan 2008, 7:06 pm

I have a friend like this and was surprised that behind his back all the other guys find him just as embarassinmg as i do , they just don't care enough to do or say anything.

I mean that theyre slobs who make no effurt to improve thier own life so they don't care about another enough to get concerned one way or the other.

Thing is I used to be really codependant with guy and your situation saounds similar. Its better to go off alone rather than get into an abusive pattern.

You could try talking to your friend about this but to admit fault in most people seems like the most painful thing in the world.

Don't be codependant on an unhealth persom, don't get into a bad social habit.



ps1r3n
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13 Jan 2008, 4:52 am

sodarktheshadows wrote:
i can tell you from the perspective of a person that can identify with your friend (btw, you described me to a t) i'm sure she didn't mean to be rude. i know i've said dumb things like that before, not meaning to sound like i was being rude, just smart-assy, but it has come out sounding the wrong way, and obviously then being taken the wrong way. i know i would want to be told that i had upset someone by doing this, so that i would have the chance to explain myself and apologize. i would definately say something to her about it and give her the benefit of the doubt. maybe she doesn't realize she does it.


Thanks, yeah really think she doesn't mean to upset people.



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13 Jan 2008, 6:55 pm

Everyone has friends like this. It is a shame you figured out without a comeback that she was being rude. Next time, just say “excuse me, rudeness, but…”. It works with my interrupting friends.


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14 Jan 2008, 5:40 am

I don't know what would be worse. This situation, or a friend who says, "What?" on the phone, because I'm hard to understand, when I have a cold. I think that you need to find yourself some better company. I know that I wouldn't want a "friend" telling me to shut-up, all the time. I think that you need to find yourself a real friend.


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14 Jan 2008, 6:01 am

I think you need to bring this up with her, but in a fairly direct manner, not in hints or allusions (she won't get those or not immediately). I have been guilty of this sort of thing, I don't mean to be insulting and wish I could hit the 'rewind' button. Aspies have a hard time with apologising and 'mending' relationships too. I don't think her manner was acceptable and you need to bring this to her attention. We do have to make efforts with language, it's nice that you would be prepared to point this out to her in a way she can, hopefully understand.