Aspies have low empathy - true or false?

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Padraig
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05 Jan 2012, 2:23 am

With people that I know and like, yes, I do feel empathy for them. I think more so than the average person (entirely subjective assessment on my part). However, with strangers, I don't feel any at all. Either way, I'm told that I don't show it even though I think I am.



LennytheWicked
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05 Jan 2012, 10:00 am

Personally, I think that most neurotypicals lack it, but are better at faking it. Take a person who's crying in a public place. See how many people go out of there way to ask what's wrong, or even acknowledge the person. See how many people start giggling, behind a hand or otherwise.

However, they know how they're supposed to react when someone says, "Did you hear that Bob's uncle died?"

"Oh that's terrible!"

Whereas someone with Asperger's might hear the same thing and not say anything, or say something on a different subject.

Personally, empathetic matters make me extremely uncomfortable when they're negative feelings, and I make a conscious effort to remove myself from them. I know they want me to join in with the waterworks. I just don't want to.


Here's something interesting: rats have empathy. Probably more than people. I'll post a link to the article when I find it.



Joe90
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05 Jan 2012, 12:12 pm

False.

And what makes Aspies say all NTs have empathy? I wish they did - things might be a bit better for me.


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Miharu
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05 Jan 2012, 1:48 pm

False.

I have alot of empathy. Sometimes i feel too much for my own good.
I get touched really easely by others their pain and problems. I care alot for others their feelings, even for strangers.
My only problem sometimes is expressing it, feeling to shy or scared to show it.

I even feel Nt's have lower empathy at times, less understanding for people with problems.



Joe90
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05 Jan 2012, 2:44 pm

I feel I have higher empathy than most people. I think NTs have selective empathy, whereas I feel empathy all the time - even when I don't want to. Too much empathy can lead to people taking advantage of you. When my friend was sick in the middle of a supermarket, I was more worried about her than I was getting a later bus home late in the dark - even though getting later buses home in the dark is always a major anxiety for me, but I really didn't care at the time because I was so worried about my friend that I stayed with her and forgot all about the time. I just stopped and thought, ''how would I feel if I came over sick in the supermarket and my friend just walked off and left me?'' So that made me stay with her even more, and I was happy that I did, because I believe in the saying ''a good deed erases a bad deed'', or something like that.

Also, I always think that other people are all anxious and self-conscious just like me - even though rationally they're not (well some are, but not everybody). I hate being stared at or looked at by strangers, so when I walk past strangers I avoid looking at them in case they might not want to be looked at (even though I gathered that most people like being looked at). But if I do look up at someone, that person might happen to be just as anxious as me about people looking, and I might have made this person feel uncomfortable, so that is why I don't look (causes problems when I see somebody in the corner of my eye who looks familiar but being afraid to look properly at them so I will never know if it was somebody I know or not).


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faerie_queene87
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05 Jan 2012, 3:02 pm

I can feel anything other people feel while I am in the same room, even just writing to me. Sometimes it is just too much to bear and I need to leave the room. I get very moved by movies and books if they are detailed enough. If I am in a group and I see that a person is feeling excluded I'd go talk to her immediately. If I see on the spot that some "injustice" is done on a person I would get very upset and step forward, but I couldn't care less about people in poor countries starving or child labor or tests on animals or the like. I can't figure out intentions or really put myself in others' shoes (e.g. a parent is sick and I'm somewhere else). I would cry like crazy at anyone's funeral (even if watching on tv) but I never blinked when I was told that a relative or friend died.

What am I?


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