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petrel
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21 Oct 2010, 9:00 am

I'm wondering what is typical in terms of self awareness for AS and non-AS kids. (Is there a typical? I *do* get the whole spectrum concept. :) )

When I read about AS, the literature seems to imply a general lack of self awareness, particularly as it pertains to social situations.

My teenager is still waiting to be evaluated so we're not sure where she really fits.

I don't think we're completely off base looking at AS, because clearly she has great difficulty interpreting other people's behavior (especially in real time situations; that is, she can often look back, take time, and think it through with some accuracy but she is functionally unable to do so and keep up in an actual social situation.)

But actually I'm impressed with her self awareness. She asks a lot of fairly insightful questions/observations: "Do you think I'm bossy?" "I think I was too direct in class today." "This is one of those times when I'm fixating, isn't it?" "I know I am supposed to somehow respond to X/be interested in Y/etc. but I don't know how/don't care about gossip/etc." Honestly her ability to describe where social situations are going wrong for her has seemed to surprise people (specifically two therapists we saw to look into getting into social skills groups).

Really in some ways she seems far more mature than her age peers.

On the other hand, we watched a movie this weekend and to be fair her observations about what was happening/character motivations/etc. were pretty simplistic for someone her age.


I get so confused by the back and forth nature of all this.

(On the plus side, I recognize that her observing the specifics is the first step toward working on them. )

Thoughts?



buryuntime
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21 Oct 2010, 9:06 am

I've heard lots of people say they can read read body language and such on here but not know how to react to it. She probably understands she is supposed to be acting a certain way but does not know how to, specifically and certainly can't do it subconsciously.

I'm the type that seems to have little awareness, though, but am very introspective in other regards.



ediself
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21 Oct 2010, 9:07 am

well...i was like that at her age. If she's on the spectrum she probably needs some feedback to adjust her behaviours in the exact correct way, but the insight is part of girl's obsessions with understanding human nature and how people work, including themselves. seems perfectly normal to me, in an AS way :D



momsparky
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21 Oct 2010, 9:34 am

DS has always been extremely insightful in the same sort of way...and has the same kind of hindsight in social situations.



NataliaI
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21 Oct 2010, 10:19 am

ediself wrote:
well...i was like that at her age. If she's on the spectrum she probably needs some feedback to adjust her behaviours in the exact correct way, but the insight is part of girl's obsessions with understanding human nature and how people work, including themselves. seems perfectly normal to me, in an AS way :D


How do I (as a parent) know when to give feedback and when to just let her be? Did you find feedback helpful or annoying?


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ediself
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21 Oct 2010, 5:37 pm

oh, you have to wait for her to ask! don't just jump on her everytime you notice something, she might start feeling nothing she does is ever right....she also needs to buid self esteem, and be able to be genuine when she's in the safety of her home. but a good idea , if she agrees on it, would be to ask her if she wants some training. you could ask her about this in the most respectful way you can think of, for example present it as social roleplay, where you would sit for an hour with her and be able to correct what she wants to work on. be gentle though..........make it more "fun"than "work" if you see what i mean, as a bonding activity.
edit ( i ignored the end of the question :roll: ) : i personally find unwanted feedback irritating, especially when i'm doing my best. but i used to ask my mother for feedback, and what i expected then was nothing but the truth and the entire truth. and ideas for corrections.



DW_a_mom
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21 Oct 2010, 7:10 pm

My son is extremely self aware of his reasons for doing things, his own thought processes, etc. All the "deep" things.

But he is entirely the opposite of self aware when it comes to knowing if his voice is too loud, if he is eating with his mouth open, or if he is fingering something that does not belong to him. Basically, if that awareness has to happen in the moment without a prompt, about something he generally considers superfluous, he does not have it.

As with everything about AS, it very much depends on the specific action you are talking about. My son lives at extremes, and that is true within the general concept of self-awareness, as well.


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petrel
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21 Oct 2010, 9:49 pm

DW_a_Mom- what you said makes me think about exactly where the insights are.

Mine has also always had deep insight into her own motivations.

Recently I do see this sort of examination of her own behavior though, which is new... she *is* thinking about how her actions played into whatever the situation was.... It's always after the fact- or so it seems to me- but there's some awareness there. I guess I find myself wondering whether that precludes AS, but probably not. She *is* 15 .......probably the NT child understands all of this intuitively at far earlier than 15.

I had to laugh about considering something 'superfluous'... I guess her exasperation with having to make sure her clothes don't clash horribly falls under that category. (i.e. she utterly does not care as long as she is warm enough) It's really hard for her to see that this is a factor that other girls consider when they choose friends.

And certainly "in the moment" forget it.