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squiddy
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05 Jul 2010, 8:09 pm

My therapist says that because I am good at giving sound logical intra personal advice, and I have a lot of empathy, that there is no way I have some sort of ASD.


I'm an oversensitive gifted person. I was forming sentences at about 4-5 months of age, yet I have pre verbal memories of being very oversensitive to people's emotions and learned to detach. To exacerbate the problem, my mom was suicidal when I was very little, and she has anxiety to the point of psychosis, even nowadays. (I am 25 now)


I've never been emotionally connected to anyone, but I would do anything for anyone in order to make them feel better. I experience a lot of ASD struggles, and have most of the co morbid conditions, yet people always comment about my piercing insights and understanding of their situation, or sensitivity. Even strangers. I can usually complete the sentences of new acquaintances after talking to them for 30 minutes. I have trouble being around most people. I am only comfortable around aspies, really.

I would rather get beaten than leave my apartment or take out my ear plugs, and I am obsessively frightened of talking.

How much of this sounds familiar?



Angel_ryan
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05 Jul 2010, 8:15 pm

I've had similar problems, I never go anywhere without my MP3 player, I find music motivates me and takes off some of the sting of sensory over load when going out in public. I suggest switching from ear plugs to an MP3 player. Listen to something soothing and instrumental.



buryuntime
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05 Jul 2010, 8:15 pm

There's this article about people that are gifted being misdiagnosed as Asperger's. They have a lot of similarities, just throwing that out there.



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05 Jul 2010, 8:41 pm

squiddy wrote:
My therapist says that because I am good at giving sound logical intra personal advice, and I have a lot of empathy, that there is no way I have some sort of ASD.


Hi, squiddy.

IMO, the two are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Sometimes I can do the same thing, while at other times I'm clueless.

Regarding "empathy," read this: http://personalitycafe.com/general-psyc ... heory.html

If you want to try self-diagnosing, try one of these:

http://www.piepalace.ca/blog/asperger-test-aq-test/

http://www.rdos.net/eng/Aspie-quiz.php

Welcome to WP! :D


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05 Jul 2010, 8:43 pm

squiddy wrote:
My therapist says that because I am good at giving sound logical intra personal advice, and I have a lot of empathy, that there is no way I have some sort of ASD.

I've often thought that having empathy and showing it appropriately (from the NT point of view) are two separate issues. When someone engages in a course of action and the most logical outcome is disastrous, how empathetic or even sympathetic should someone be when the disaster strikes? Also being able to analyze an inter-personal situationist as an objective observer is very different from analyzing it as a participant.


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05 Jul 2010, 8:53 pm

Interesting theory. How well known is it, and what kind of tests have been done?

I've seen Aspies I know write stories and convince me of the characters. I don't know how that would be doable without some kind of ability to analyze and care about others.


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marshall
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05 Jul 2010, 10:52 pm

It's hard to say.

I don't think it's true that an intelligent person with AS can NEVER have empathy or intra-personal insight. Personally that's a little insulting.

I mean, I can analyze patterns in people, realize how they think, believe, behave, etc. I just apply the same intuition to people as I do when I think about natural phenomena. I always look for the root cause of things. I always want to know why. I always thirst to gain understanding and there's nothing more satisfying in the world than those epiphanous *eureka* moments where I stumble upon some new insight.

Then again, I don't think I really thought about other people in depth until I reached adulthood.



squiddy
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06 Jul 2010, 12:45 am

conundrum wrote:
Welcome to WP!


Thanks!
I've taken tests like that and they usually say "yup, aspie" or "yup, AQ score of 100000000000"

Did not know about obsessions with flowing water. I remember missing material in a physics class once and then acing the parts on fluid dynamics just by flashbacks to when I was about 3-4 months and would visualize strands of color flowing through water. I used to just gaze at natural processes and such. I just "knew".

and I was more aware of the behavior of fluids, than of myself at the time of the test. It kicked up my hypomania quite a bit.


marshall wrote:
It's hard to say.

I don't think it's true that an intelligent person with AS can NEVER have empathy or intra-personal insight. Personally that's a little insulting.

I mean, I can analyze patterns in people, realize how they think, believe, behave, etc. I just apply the same intuition to people as I do when I think about natural phenomena. I always look for the root cause of things. I always want to know why. I always thirst to gain understanding and there's nothing more satisfying in the world than those epiphanous *eureka* moments where I stumble upon some new insight.

Then again, I don't think I really thought about other people in depth until I reached adulthood.


That is how I feel. I've never had any trouble understanding any system or concept. If I'm interested, it's automatic. I thirst for that understanding, and I'm addicted to those insights. I especially love seeing systems collide, and during college one semester I realized that was what it was. I got out of my hole a little and began having streams of insights about how people worked. I beat a lot of my fears and learned a lot.

Granted I went crazy with excitement and holed myself up shortly thereafter, but I learned a lot in a short time. And I don't know how to express this to my therapist, because it sounds crazy. He sees a well adjusted, very friendly and outgoing, eccentric guy who can work through intra personal struggles with *very* challenging people... and when I tell him about the other stuff he just reminds me about all the situations where I just detached and reasoned my way around.

Yet I am so out of sync. So overwhelmed.

Sigh~



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06 Jul 2010, 2:40 am

Your therapist is an idiot. Empathy is not a criteria for ASD.


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06 Jul 2010, 8:41 am

squiddy wrote:
I've never been emotionally connected to anyone, but I would do anything for anyone in order to make them feel better. I experience a lot of ASD struggles... yet people always comment about my piercing insights and understanding of their situation


That's me.


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06 Jul 2010, 9:07 am

I know many aspies, ( though mostly right brained dominant aspies) who out of abusive or extremely adverse home environments, acquired the ability to understand the emotions and motivations of significant others.

It's not rocket science for me, it makes plain sense how adversity re-routes the empathic pathways, just like a carrot that hits a brick re-routes it's whole system around that brick in order to stay alive.

I would be very interested to hear if you have had a history depression.

I wrote a book all about my life experiences, and I wrote it because I needed to make sense of my highly advanced empathic skills, which were born out of extreme and terrifying circumstances.

I feel enormously my suffering and also the suffering of others, but communicating my empathy to others is often perceived by others as odd or uncaring.


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06 Jul 2010, 9:16 am

Much of that sounds like me. I think there are different subtypes of ASD. That the diagnostic criteria don't get it.

Inability to emotionally connect with others... that was me for most of my life. And I think that is much more core to autism than lack of empathy.


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squiddy
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06 Jul 2010, 11:59 am

In order of importance~

criss wrote:
I wrote a book all about my life experiences, and I wrote it because I needed to make sense of my highly advanced empathic skills, which were born out of extreme and terrifying circumstances.


I'd love to read it if you have put this anywhere public. It sounds fascinating...


criss wrote:
I know many aspies, ( though mostly right brained dominant aspies) who out of abusive or extremely adverse home environments, acquired the ability to understand the emotions and motivations of significant others.

It's not rocket science for me, it makes plain sense how adversity re-routes the empathic pathways, just like a carrot that hits a brick re-routes it's whole system around that brick in order to stay alive.

I would be very interested to hear if you have had a history depression.


You're right, it isn't rocket science.

Yea, if you take a toddler that will go mute for days due to minor stuff like seeing another child's toy break, and expose them to two suicidal, self-injurious parents, whom scream till they lose their voices about death and such. Well, eating becomes less imperative for survival than quelling those emotions, even to a two year old.

Creativity is often born where there is a need for it. I'm extremely right brained (though still usually too logical for my own good ), and I am always either depressed, or obsessed.



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06 Jul 2010, 12:27 pm

I have empathy, I believe, I just don't know how to show it in a socially appropriate manner.



criss
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06 Jul 2010, 2:16 pm

thank you for yr interest.

A Painful Gift is available on Amazon
and also on ebooks
itunes.apple.com/gb/app/a-painful-gift/id366640364?mt=8
But for everyone at WP who is interested
I will email my book free to them
if they PM me their email address.

Wishing you well

Chris


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06 Jul 2010, 6:28 pm

I have tried the right-brain left-brain type tests, and as happens with darned near ANY psychological measure I take, to include all the ones I took on this site (except for an ADHD test which was pretty much "you have a flaming case, we think you need treatment of the kind you'll refuse"), I split it down the middle to the point where you couldn't tell what was dominant and what wasn't. ;)

I swear, I don't TRY to split every metric I come across. It just happens. (I wonder why????)

Anyway, I am very much enjoying this discussion because whatever I am, it resonates. For me, there is a theory/practice gap. I want VERY much to connect, and deeply. I care about people tremendously. But how I relate and what other people think about or want to talk about or how they want to act is very different. I feel very torn because of it.


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