I am on the verge of revealing my Asperger's on Facebook.

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EgaoNoGenki
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06 Dec 2008, 12:03 am

I've been telling some people that once I have 510 friends on there, I would reveal "a BIG part of what shapes my personality." I've even told one that just like race, creed, sexual orientation, religion, and other categories that make up who we are, I am going to reveal something that shapes who I am.
(Asperger's would fall under the "Disability" or "Handicap" category. If it's something we're born with, it's put on the same spectrum as race, religion, and the rest of that.)

I now have 506 friends. I must prepare the rest of my set of notes very soon.

Now, here's how I've written them so far. The notes are currently saved as private drafts and their bodies are up to 750 words each so they aren't too long a read.

Quote:
Title: Official Admission: I have Asperger's Syndrome (Part I)

<h1>Foreword</h1>
Some will think "TL;DR" if the note is too long, therefore I’ll limit each installment to 750 words, place the overflow in a "Part II" and beyond as necessary.

This note stayed private until I gained my <b>510th friend</b> on Facebook. I chose 510 as the threshold instead of 500 because now that I've surpassed such a wonderful milestone, I don't want to slip back below it.

<h2>Passive pruning of narrow-minded "friends"</h2>
I predict up to 10 friends will defriend me upon reading my admission that I have Asperger's. I have never rejected a friend request nor taken anyone off my friend list even once since I've had Facebook, but this note is a form of "passive friend pruning." I'll let narrow-minded individuals take me off of their list because I don't need narrow-minded people in my life; if they cannot accept me <i>especially</i> for what I was <u>born with</u>, they were more likely to be a hindrance all along anyway.

<h2>Date of Draft Creation</h2>
I started the entry on Monday morning, September 8, 2008, underwent revisions thereafter, and saved it as a "Draft" until somebody became my 510th friend here.

<h1>Onto the subject at hand</h1>
For quite a long time now, I've hesitated revealing my Asperger's Syndrome to other people save for psychologists, (some) family members, and very few friends. The reason why was because I've been bitten for it multiple times.

<h2>I'd often be treated worse for revealing it</h2>
Instead of cutting me slack, some peers would pick on me more, so I kept it under wraps until I knowing someone whom I thought I could trust with this information. Some of Those people still liked me less even though I was confident their stance toward me would either get better, or at least remain unchanged.

Therefore, I haven't revealed it to even some of my best friends, fearing being liked less by them as well. I had no idea how Kyle Baack and Jacob Holland would react to my coming forward with this "new development" so I kept it from them as well for a long time. Now that they'll have seen this note, I hope to hear from them their reactions.

<h2>Issues surrounding Asperger’s in Japan</h2>
Another set of guys helped me a lot back in Japan - Garrett Fine and Craig Henry. (It is quite likely that Garrett will have taken me off his friends list by the time I posted this. If so, he'll have missed out!) Every little inkling of rejection from anyone anywhere hurt still, so I kept it from them (Unsure about Garrett; maybe Armstrong told him while I wasn't present?) in case they were going to like me less.

I only told Andrew Armstrong (the guy with a shouldered chip) and Robert Hyde because I was drunk enough not to care one night. (Since Japan, drinking at parties isn’t so appealing now.) Hyde said Asperger’s was a "beautiful disease" and sounded quite accepting about it. He even said geniuses have Asperger’s too, and something about Asperger's makes them more academically intelligent than the norm, so I had hidden talents too. (Yes, I do.)

<h3>Hyde's "Tatemae"</h3>
Garrett warned me about the concept of "<i>Tatemae</i>" (outer, shown feelings) and "<i>Honne</i>," (inner, true feelings.) It turned out Hyde was only giving me good tatemae.

Robert even took me off his friends list in June for some reason; when I told him about my finding this out, he claimed that his sister called him (ALL THE WAY FROM BRITAIN?!) just to tell him to take another guy named "Christian" off of his list because the fiancé betrayed her, and since he was so drunk early in the morning, he deleted me by mistake. Robert even showed me what the other Christian was he talked about so sounded quite believable in the meantime.

Hyde also claimed to have realized the mistake a few minutes later, and thought, "Oh, if I send him a request to add him back now, he'll realize I took him off." After (apparently) clearing it up, I friended him again; he accepted.

Hyde took me off again on August 7th. He knew now that I've left Japan (and he stayed for 2-3 more weeks until heading back to the UK,) I couldn’t go face-to-face about it. I decided that he harbored some inner ill feeling of me, and since now he'd be on the other side of the world, I'd let him slide.

(Next Topic Continued on Part II)



EgaoNoGenki
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06 Dec 2008, 12:11 am

Quote:
Title: Official Admission: I have Asperger's Syndrome (Part II)

<h1>Gestures, sounds, etc. I give off with Asperger's</h1>

<h2>The way I sound & make gestures</h2>

I don’t know why K-Staters haven’t told me what Garrett has, (Please, K-Staters, WHY NOT? I hope to hear from you about this!) but Garrett was the first one who told me I sounded grating when I halt in mid-sentence while talking, thinking of the next words to say. Craig made a similar remark – “too considered.” I act too careful about what I’m about to say. When I make those pauses, I don’t even think about them; it’s something that operates from my sub-conscience.

But when I think about it, it's because I don't <i>”Walt some-sing Ron to comb outer my mouse”</i>. I'm afraid that if I speak too fast without thinking of what I'm about to say, <i>something wrong and unwanted will come out of my mouth,</i> roughly like the above example. Garrett also said I sounded like William Shatner with my mid-sentence halts, but at least Shatner is <i>confident</i> when he speaks.

Well, not having enough confidence comes from having Asperger's. I too often expect to socially fumble now. Craig said I "appear to approach EVERY social situation like a big (pl)ucking exam." Many social situations do feel like exams when one has to carry around Asperger's for life. If I fail, I could make enemies; those enmities could be life-long.

<h3>The gestures</h3>

Garrett pointed out my gestures like no K-Stater has thus far! My hand/arm movements may not match my inner feelings. (Once, he said "That annoys the hell outta me.") Also, the bigger deal was the way I tilted my head at times.

If I made like a 45º lean with my head, he'd do the same just to show its awkwardness. Why haven’t peers from home said or done anything similar long ago!? (To that, Garrett said a K-Stater probably just remained polite, hurried to finish talking, and got out of there quickly. K-Staters, do you concur?)

Not only do I not know how to give off the right body gestures for particular situations, I may not notice what others' body gestures mean, and what feelings this reflects. Some nonverbal hints that I'd need to take may be too subtle to notice.

<h2>Confidence</h2>

First impressions impact the most. They shape the opinion someone will have of you for the rest of your life, for a long time, or at least for a good while. I know how a bad first impression hurts so when I meet new people, it becomes like an exam.

Whereas some may think, "Ah, I sound tense when I meet new people, too. He'll calm down after we know each other better," others may, "This guy's too nervous. Wonder what he's got to hide?! Probably something I'd hate to hear. Or is he just chicken, one of the least brave souls I've met?"

It's that I had something to hide for a long time - once again my Asperger's.

Ultimately, sooner or later, signs of my Asperger's eventually leak out. Being confident and more relaxed (more relaxed = less careful) about how I socialize would/may just leak those Asperger's traits even faster.

<h3>That's why I want to wear a mask</h3>

Which is why I love ski-masks so much. As goes without saying, it's only appropriate when cold out. I have better confidence talking to people with a ski mask on because if I make a social faux-pas, they'll not remember my face. (My voice can sound like many others' voices.) Since some can tell who I am just by the way my <u>eyes</u> look, I plan to wear it with sunglasses.

It only works outside. Other people will think I'm weird and possibly up to no good if I keep a ski mask on indoors! It's only appropriate indoors on Halloween.

<h3>What I love to do on Halloween</h3>

Halloween is a great time to go to a party because I'll wear a hooded phantom robe that keeps my face behind a mesh so nobody outside sees it. This way, I ask and tell others all sorts of things that I wouldn't say while my face is shown. Sure, other people may ask/say the same things in normal circumstances, but they're usually confident that it won't turn out to be a mistake, or will shrug it off easily if it is.

Halloween is like the "Real-Life Honesty Box." (If you don't have the application, see it at http://www.facebook.com/apps/applicatio ... 2552096927 )

(Next topic continued on Part III)


I don't know how many parts I'll need. I'll need suggestions: How should I ought to do the rest? Should I start on my recent life first and eventually fall back to the past, or in what order should I talk about anything about me that pertains to Asperger's?

This'll be a pretty big moment in my life. Something I've hidden in me for SO long is coming out of the closet. (It feels like a homosexual's coming out, I believe.) But at last, this will explain why I talk and act in certain ways.



Reflection
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06 Dec 2008, 12:16 am

Heh.

I once wrote a lengthy statement and had some monologgued telephone calls to some family and friends once I found out I had Asperger's... it was ok to share with some close family members and close friends, but I found out that I didn't need to tell anyone about it. I actually felt like an idiot later in some cases where people didn't accept me anyway.

If they don't accept you, they don't accept you.

If they do accept you, they do accept you.

Sharing of a label will not really change anything. It will just make it a little more awkward between you and the people who don't accept you anyway, because then they'll have something to rub in your face and it'll make them feel better about themselves.

Well this is just my experience anyway.


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Last edited by Reflection on 06 Dec 2008, 12:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

Silver_Meteor
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06 Dec 2008, 12:19 am

Join an Facebook Asperger group and don't say anything.


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Reflection
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06 Dec 2008, 12:21 am

Silver_Meteor wrote:
Join an Asperger group and don't say anything.


I agree.


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Mike61290
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06 Dec 2008, 1:35 am

Most common "symptoms"

1. High IQ
2. lack of body language
3. rationality


effects.

1. You tend to learn your interests easily
2. You are good at poker
3. You tend to actually think

there are some undesirable effects but the good usually outweighs the bad.

Plus I don't think we have a lack of communication skills, I can speak and be understood perfectly by people in my family or those with AS. I personally think its their lack of understanding as opposed to our lack or communication


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tlcoopi7
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06 Dec 2008, 2:26 am

I am in a few Autism/Asperger Facebook groups myself. In the About Me section, I put down that I am interested in the Autism Rights and Acceptance Movement and indicated that I am autistic. It is short and to the point. I have some autistics add me to their friends list because of it.


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EgaoNoGenki
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06 Dec 2008, 2:31 am

Silver_Meteor wrote:
Join an Facebook Asperger group and don't say anything.


I think that's too easy to go unnoticed. Group joins are on a newsfeed shared by all other friends, and can go down the list really fast. I will join them AFTER publishing those notes.



Keeno
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06 Dec 2008, 3:22 am

Personally this isn't something I'd reveal in front of 510 people. I would also, if I was a Facebook user, and because people I talk to online are so mindbogglingly disloyal towards me, expect a lot more than 10 people to disappear from my friends list.



EgaoNoGenki
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06 Dec 2008, 5:11 am

Keeno wrote:
Personally this isn't something I'd reveal in front of 510 people. I would also, if I was a Facebook user, and because people I talk to online are so mindbogglingly disloyal towards me, expect a lot more than 10 people to disappear from my friends list.


If they're narrow-minded enough to take one off for their social handicap, then they're probably just as narrow-minded to racial, religious, and other minorities. You probably wouldn't want them anyway.

I expect an average of maybe 1-3 people a day to take me off the list in the little while after I post it, and if that happens, I have ways to attempt to replenish that list.

Not everyone will read it anyway. Moreover, this is "passive friend pruning." I don't want to take any friends off my list myself, so if I decide that there needs to be some "housekeeping" of the list, I'll reveal more things about myself that'll cause some people to take me off their list.



Hector
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06 Dec 2008, 5:31 am

Why do you even want to make an announcement like that? I never thought my AS was important or dramatic enough for that. I've told a few people, but only after they've gotten to know me and have hopefully learned quite a bit about my personality as a whole. It's not like coming out as a homosexual (and even then, if I was I wouldn't make a huge detailed announcement about it either).



DarthMaxeuis
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06 Dec 2008, 9:15 am

Don't tell your Asperger's to everyone, only to close friends and relatives, people that can understand.
If I were you, I wouldn't reveal it on facebook, it's a sort of suicide to do it there for me ^^.


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Keeno
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06 Dec 2008, 6:21 pm

Yes, I agree, it's something to tell only to a select few trusted people... if even that. When I have told people about having AS, I have come to regret it most times.

You are doing a very brave thing, Egao, and I wouldn't have the nerve to make such an admission to so big an audience.



EgaoNoGenki
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06 Dec 2008, 6:55 pm

Wow. I believe that Aspies grow on to become the most pessimistic pessimists in the land, do we?!

Anyway, upon gaining my 507th friend, I will attempt to postpone my run up to 510 by posting the following unrelated blog entry. Do you think this will get a few people off my list and therefore help me postpone gaining my 510th? If so, how come?

Quote:
Title: Why I would've liked to be born in the year 2000. (Reasons 21-40)

Body: This is the second installment of a 100-reason series. (At least.)

Reasons 1-20: http://www.facebook.com/notes.php?ref=s ... 3&index=50

21. Schools and etc. have more resources to help kids get farther along in their personal developments than they did when I was a kid.

22. I would get to love Pokémon and not get socially backlashed for childish interests.

23. Classmates and peers would NOT hold grudges for as long as they do now.

24. "Jeanessa DeSpatznio (nee Ryndella)" betrayed me. (She may be more amicable to a millennium kid. Or she may inherently be an authoritarian hag who wouldn't be any kinder to them.)

25. "Salco DeSpatznio" also betrayed me, even though he's never met nor talked to me before. He heard pretty much everything from "Jeanessa." (He may also be more amicable to a millennium kid. Or he may inherently be an authoritarian grump who wouldn't be any kinder to them, but it's doubtful because I don't think that's the character of an aspiring optometrist.)

26. It is easier to get on anybody's more charitable side as a kid. An adult would have to be deft in the art of persuasion to do the same!

27. "Melhan Dapponary" betrayed me. (Though it was a little less severe than "Jeanessa's" betrayal.)
(She may be more amicable to a millennium kid. Or she may inherently be an authoritarian hag who wouldn't be any kinder to them.)

28. If a kid earns allowances based on the grades he gets on his school assignments, that would give me the best incentive to do my best in school!

29. I favor short-term incentives all too well. I don't like to wait for long-term rewards all that much, and short-term rewards were more abundant in childhood.

30. I REALLY love the "2fer" fashion scheme. (At least I think they're called "2fers.") That fashion wasn't as well-known when I was a kid, but more common now. I'd want to wear shirts like that much of the time! Now I believe it is a "fashion crime" for college students to wear that! Examples below:

---30a. 2fer sample 1: http://www.addictivedjdesigns.com/produ ... cts_id=177

---30b. 2fer sample 2: http://www.addictivedjdesigns.com/produ ... cts_id=271

---30c. 2fer sample 3: http://www.addictivedjdesigns.com/produ ... cts_id=272

---30d. 2fer sample 4: http://www.addictivedjdesigns.com/produ ... cts_id=279

31. The ballpits of Chuck E. Cheese's and any other kids' establishments, are hard to tire of.

32. The last time I was at Chuck E. Cheese's, I still never got bored of it.

33. I've been more comfortable as a follower than a leader, and whereas I'm starting to be forced to do what I don't like all that much, being a follower was a wonderful ideal back in childhood.

34. Children's/Youth Ministries aren't something anyone dozes off in often. They keep providing fun ways to worship and grow in The Lord.

35. There were too many youth summer camps I didn't go to when I was a kid; I found myself rotting and bored out of my mind throughout the summers many times.

36. Thanks to the wonderful Internet, a millennium kid can find some good youth camps for his parents to send him to, if they don't take the initiative to find the camps for him in the first place. (More kids that age get savvier at the computer these days.)

37. There were less pathological liars; even if the truth was hurtful, at least they told it like it is so the the kids they told it to would know what not to do next time.

38. Even if a few kids pathologically lied, it was easier to tell whether one lied, and easier to blurt back how they were lying.

39. Kids are physically lower-maintenance (shaving, etc.)

40. There is less stress in a kid's life, therefore (usually) less violent thoughts and tendencies coming from these stresses.


Regardless, when the 510th friend comes and I post that, I will get to KNOW exactly who all the narrow-minded people are. I have what is called a "Friends Tracker." That application will tell me WHO takes me off their friends list (since the last reset date, anyway,) and I will keep a list for about the first two or so weeks of who removed me after I posted my "coming out."



pinkbowtiepumps
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06 Dec 2008, 7:10 pm

Do you REALLY want all of your facebook friends to know?
In 15 years, that might work. But not now. Most people don't understand Asperger's well enough to automatically be accepting of it.
I'd just stick to telling a few close friends that you can trust.

I'm not trying to be pessimistic, I just want you to not become a target for ridicule.

When I was in high school, my dad signed me up for a scholarship for this artists with disabilities program. A web page had been put up discussing my Asperger's. Well, a bunch of classmates found that page through a Google search, and it wasn't pretty.

I've found that people generally have a condescending attitude towards those with Asperger's (unless they know you), and will jump to conclusions about your intelligence or belittle you for it. Please don't do this to yourself.

Also, please, PLEASE don't mention specific people by name on Facebook in a negative manner. It will get back to them and they, as well as many other people, will resent you for this. Don't discuss negative social experiences with anyone besides your closest family and friends. These are just things that you generally don't do.



EgaoNoGenki
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07 Dec 2008, 12:11 am

Pink bow, I think I will change the negatively-discussed names into aliases. Which of the names should I change? (I wrote positive things about some too, and for the moment I don't feel like going back to scan through it to see which ones need to be aliased.

Anyway, now that I have 507, I'll post those 21-40 reasons why I wish I was born in the year 2000. Since no one said anything about that one, I'll assume it's probably okay.