Is social interaction a genuine struggle for you?

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Keeno
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15 Mar 2010, 8:49 pm

Willard wrote:
Are your friends all diagnosed, or have they just decided they're 'on the Spectrum' because they're 'different'?

I think I've probably met a few undiagnosed Aspies in my life, but no more than a handful. I've never heard of formally diagnosed anti-social (or non-social) Aspergians running around in packs, in public places no less. For me, that would require a lot of heavy drinking (and since I don't do public restrooms, there's a bit of Catch-22). Actually, it would seem more Aspertypical to me for the group to prefer gathering in someone's home, where the noise level and unexpected stimuli could be contained to some extent.

Just wondering if your friends don't have the same reactions as you because they don't actually have the same handicap you have. Your reactions sound perfectly typical for someone with AS. I can't imagine why they wouldn't be experiencing pretty much the same thing. If they don't, something's not quite right - er - wrong. :?

And I can't speak for the world BTW, but I for one do not find social interaction of any kind (except sex - is that social?) to be invigorating. It wears me to a frazzle in no time at all, even with people I know and like.


They have diagnoses, for sure. It's at an autism centre I met them. So they're genuinely on the spectrum. I'd have to assume much more mildly so, compared to me.



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18 Mar 2010, 1:13 pm

You could, just tell them.



Northeastern292
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18 Mar 2010, 1:53 pm

Taupey wrote:
I find social interaction in loud crowded places too much to deal with myself. It is draining and exhausting. I cannot understand anyone when more than one person is talking at once. And I have tried many different social situations too. I even bartended for many years but mostly worked the pit mixing 10 to 15 different drinks at once (good memory) for cocktail waitresses instead of dealing directly with the patrons. Maybe you would be happier getting involved with something associated with one of your special interests instead. That's what I would do.


I know that same exact feeling. And yet, I want a career in public office! :lol: Can someone whack me over the head with a two-by-four?

I can't deal with excessively huge crowds, and I get anxiety by eating alone, because well, I worry that people think I'm weird.



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19 Mar 2010, 5:12 pm

Social interaction is a battle for me.



CaptainTrips222
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20 Mar 2010, 1:24 am

It's rough for me too, and truthfully I don't really enjoy it all that much.

Here's a thought for the OP. The few times I met up with a group of Aspies, I found it really hard to connect with them. Also when I recently went out with my friend who also thinks he has AS, he was aloof and I found it hard to draw him out. In both cases it was even more difficult than with my NT friends. It might be as much them as you.



Taupey
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20 Mar 2010, 8:54 am

Northeastern292 wrote:
I know that same exact feeling. And yet, I want a career in public office! :lol: Can someone whack me over the head with a two-by-four?

I can't deal with excessively huge crowds, and I get anxiety by eating alone, because well, I worry that people think I'm weird.


Yikes! That's a tough one.



Ernest
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20 Mar 2010, 1:12 pm

Its never been anything except trouble for me.



Taupey
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20 Mar 2010, 1:43 pm

CaptainTrips222 wrote:
It's rough for me too, and truthfully I don't really enjoy it all that much.

Here's a thought for the OP. The few times I met up with a group of Aspies, I found it really hard to connect with them. Also when I recently went out with my friend who also thinks he has AS, he was aloof and I found it hard to draw him out. In both cases it was even more difficult than with my NT friends. It might be as much them as you.


I understand and agree with what you are saying. I know it takes me a little time to get to know anyone. If I am around someone who is also quiet and or shy, I know from experience that it will take a little longer. If I'm sincerely interested in becoming friends with that person, I'll wait and I will not give up.



willmark
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21 Mar 2010, 12:56 am

I do pretty good, depending upon the circumstances. I have no eye contact issues, and I have little trouble with initializing conversations one on one with some people, depending upon what I intuit from them, and if the environment is acceptable. I have difficulty understanding speech with background noise, or when several conversations are occurring at the same time depending upon the acoustics of the room. I usually go silent when there are more than 3 people in the conversation, depending upon the subject and how comfortable I feel with the people in the conversation.



Keeno
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21 Mar 2010, 6:31 pm

CaptainTrips222 wrote:
It's rough for me too, and truthfully I don't really enjoy it all that much.

Here's a thought for the OP. The few times I met up with a group of Aspies, I found it really hard to connect with them. Also when I recently went out with my friend who also thinks he has AS, he was aloof and I found it hard to draw him out. In both cases it was even more difficult than with my NT friends. It might be as much them as you.


The thing is, the stuff I've struggled with is behaviours that while coming from Aspies, one would associate as more NT than Aspie.... or at least that one wouldn't think of as being classically Aspie, such as witty, intuitive sarcasm and banter, and having interests that aren't as restricted or more mainstream than mine. I have to say that there is another group of Aspies I regularly meet with, who are stronger (often extremely strong) in their AS, and although this is where all the monologuing happens, I'm much more in my element there. The difficulties I have with sarcasm and banter, and some of the non-verbal cue stuff, seem to be greatly reduced.



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21 Mar 2010, 11:37 pm

Yes. If I can't talk about my special intrests I feel as if my head will expolde. I read in a book where a kid at an AS group said the same thing and the "therapist" said, "Don't worry, we'll clean it up." If someone said that to me, I would have punched them. I found that book informative but offensive because they used the term "aspie" and the writer was clearly NT. Unless being said by another person with AS, I find the term very offensive. I perfer not to interact with other human beings unless I can talk about my special intrests. I have panic attacks if I must interact with new people and can't hold my pet lizard. I perfer not to interact with people. I find most people insanley stupid and incompent and avoid them.



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22 Mar 2010, 4:25 pm

Aimless wrote:
I am able to exchange pleasantries with people I deal with in the course of the day, like a bank teller or grocery clerk. I can have short conversations with people I know at work,and these are people I've known for years. I enjoy that. I have a "friend" who calls me up to tell me how much her life sucks. That's about it. Anytime I'm required to mingle I am woefully incompetent.


I feel the same way, "woefully incompetent" in those situations. Sometimes, even with friends, I won't have the words to carry on a conversation.

Once, I met two cousins for hte first time. I am much older than them. In an attempt to talk to them (because I felt obligated) and struggled for the right words. they both looked at me and asked, "You just don't know what to say, do you?"

Willmark wrote:
I do pretty good, depending upon the circumstances. I have no eye contact issues, and I have little trouble with initializing conversations one on one with some people, depending upon what I intuit from them, and if the environment is acceptable. I have difficulty understanding speech with background noise, or when several conversations are occurring at the same time depending upon the acoustics of the room. I usually go silent when there are more than 3 people in the conversation, depending upon the subject and how comfortable I feel with the people in the conversation.


I thought I was the only one bothered by background noise like that! It's TERRIBLY confusing!



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23 Mar 2010, 6:01 am

I find social interaction difficult.
when it comes time to mingle I am really bad.



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29 Mar 2010, 4:46 pm

I think the closest I can get to being able to socialize, is posting on this forum.

In real life, I just cannot do it. My girlfriend and three of my coworkers are the only people I can say more than a few words to in a day.

That's why I like this forum. I feel more understood. I feel far less isolated, and without having to (verbally) talk to people or explain anything.

Small talk is the worst. I might be able to mutter a short, usually nonsensical almost-sentence, then walk away feeling stupid.


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29 Mar 2010, 6:42 pm

It is a struggle yes but worth it.
My biggest problem is finding things to add to conversation or listening to people when there's other things drowning them out and also making and keeping eye contact.After a while I run out of sociability and it's like an egg timer, I have only a certain amount of time before it all runs out. Also initiating niceties like compliments are not natural to me but I can respond to them OK I just don't start if off myself.
With a very small group of close friends I can get over these things apart from the eye contact or taking in what people say that's the same with everyone but I no longer have trouble thinking of things to say and can keep going for a long while and want them to stay longer, but it's a very small group of individuals.
I think it's worth it because I need all the practice I can get if I'm going to get anywhere in life, I don't think hiding away from socialising or distancing myself is going to help much (even though I do admit to doing these things frequently). I also really value friendships because I know what it's like to lose friends through not keeping intouch properly or them getting fed up of me. I want to see people and to make friends even if that means going through a lot of trouble and s**t just to get there.


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