How do you now if you are socially blind?

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electrifiedspam
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13 May 2010, 7:53 pm

I read all of the articles that I can. But they make it sound like people with aspergers don't know when others are happy or sad.

Duh, you're smiling, you must be happy. If you are shouting you must be upset. You can navigate life pretty well this way with just the binaries (1's, or 0's, Happy or Sad). If they smile big they are REALLY happy, if they cry loudly then they are REALLY sad.

The problem I have is that I am 37 so I have learned a few gray areas as well. Is it possible that I cognitively process peoples emotions without knowing I do it? (I have caught myself doing it a time or two.)

I really think that this is the case because when I am under stress, or even really happy, I get "lost". I don't know what anyone is feeling - and that makes sense because if I am processing feelings cognitively then when my capacity is diminished... I would be blind.

I never do well in a conflict - because I never know how to respond. In hind sight it seems pretty clear that they were attacking me, but at the time I don't know.

So can you be part blind - like instead of totally deaf you are tone deaf??? Makes sense.

I do know that I had to TRAIN myself to look people in the eye. It felt very awkward at first, but I forced myself and now I am used to it. I look at people BECAUSE it is the thing to do. I actually notice that a conversation is going poorly when the person starts backing away from me - not from the facial expressions. That happens .... a lot.

I also stare at people in "THE EYE" I don't look in both the eyes, just one. It is really confusing when I talk to people with a wandering eye - I don't know which one to look at.

I know when I try to look at both eyes it is some how threatening. And I have 1 friend that I can't look in the eye at all.

So am I blind to social signals?

Are there good tests out there to take?

P.S. My wife is the only one that has ever caught me staring at her "EYE". It used to bug her. BUT we have been in a relationship for 17 years - married for 15 of those. Needles to say I spend more time around her than anyone else.



aloneinacrowd
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13 May 2010, 8:09 pm

There is a whole thread on tests that may help you.

http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt113459.html

I don't think I have prosopagnosia. I don't see people as bags of skin walking around but I do get low scores on the tests. I do have a hard time reading people. And I have been told over and over that I don't really project any facial expression.



electrifiedspam
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13 May 2010, 8:31 pm

I got a 14 EQ and an 88 SQ.

Thank you for the tests, I AM NOT CRAZY!

I have never been told that I don't project emotion, but everyone says how much my avatar looks like me. It does not have a very expressive face....

It makes me wonder.

I know that I am guarded at work but my boss has a tendency to fly off the handle and I am the one that steps in it. It always blindsides me.

P.S. You think that my car would be cleaner with an 88 SQ.



exhausted
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13 May 2010, 9:07 pm

electrifiedspam wrote:
I



I really think that this is the case because when I am under stress, or even really happy, I get "lost". I don't know what anyone is feeling - and that makes sense because if I am processing feelings cognitively then when my capacity is diminished... I would be blind.


.


i definitely think a lot of people on the spectrum process feelings cognitively---especially when trying to interpret the feelings of others. many say that they can read the facial expressions of animals much better than those of other people. (i''m among them.) i think this is because there's a complete consistency in animal facial expressions---they can't smile when they're sad or look pensive when they're actually distracted, etc. the need for consistency really seems related to cognitive (vs. intuitive) processing, it seems to me.

i know i'm also affected far more than most when receiving mixed signals---body language and facial expressions not matching, etc. this seems true for others with NLD/AS. i think, once again, the lack of consistency makes the cognitive processing of those cues more difficult.

that's probably neither here nor there. :) (it wouldn't be the first time.) but i'm glad you found some helpful tests anyway.



dragonzmyst
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13 May 2010, 9:17 pm

Quote:
I also stare at people in "THE EYE" I don't look in both the eyes, just one. It is really confusing when I talk to people with a wandering eye - I don't know which one to look at.


I do this too. I stare in their right eye when I feel that I'm expected to make eye contact. If they have a lazy right eye, I'll switch to the left, but it feels weird doing that. But then it also feels weird staring at an eye that's looking at the wall, too. So I get a little stuck sometimes.

There are times I'm with a friend and she's telling me a story and I have to quickly assess her expression, tone, posture and come to a quick conclusion as to whether she's telling me a funny story, she's upset, etc. I'm from the NYC area where sarcasm is extremely prevalent; it makes for some interesting misunderstandings sometimes. :oops: Often time I can't tell if someone is actually being sarcastic or if they're really annoyed over something. Oh well, keeps life interesting, I suppose, lol.

I'm going to take those tests tomorrow. They look interesting.


_________________
Newly diagnosed at 33 years old....


astaut
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13 May 2010, 10:44 pm

I never thought I was doing anything abnormal socially, I learned because people made (negative) comments about my social skills. That I was socially awkward, etc. As for reading facial expressions...I always thought I was pretty good at that, but can't be sure. According to the online tests I'm not too good at it. Sure, smiling means happy and so on, but people do 'fake' smiles and stuff. Apparently, the general population is able to pick up on these fake displays of emotion, while I cannot (as well as them). It isn't uncommon for Aspies to train themselves to make eye contact.