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muff
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20 Mar 2013, 9:35 pm

goldfish21 wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
It's not necessarily social impairment. It may be culturally determined behavior. I agree with some others that making generalisations over one experience with a foreign individual is similar to an NT making generalisations about people with Aspergers after watching Rainman.


That's the whole point & why so many Aspies embrace this and travel to far off lands. What we know to be social impairments are perceived by foreigners as possibly being culturally determined behaviour, and they write our social quirks off as being "not from around here, so it's OK," & are typically very polite to us.


no kidding? i did not think of it this way. it sounds amazing though. i am visiting my polish homeland next year and sooo hope to have this experience. thanks for the perspective.



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20 Mar 2013, 9:37 pm

Ettina wrote:
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It's not necessarily social impairment. It may be culturally determined behavior.


I think you missed the point.

It was a bit of a poor choice of words, but if you read through what the OP said, he (or she) said that the person wasn't impaired in her own culture.

The whole point was that cultural differences can cause the same issues as AS. Which I think is very valid.


yes, that is my point. sorry (to those who responded in a rather heated way) if i worded it incorrectly.



goldfish21
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21 Mar 2013, 2:46 am

muff wrote:
goldfish21 wrote:
cyberdad wrote:
It's not necessarily social impairment. It may be culturally determined behavior. I agree with some others that making generalisations over one experience with a foreign individual is similar to an NT making generalisations about people with Aspergers after watching Rainman.


That's the whole point & why so many Aspies embrace this and travel to far off lands. What we know to be social impairments are perceived by foreigners as possibly being culturally determined behaviour, and they write our social quirks off as being "not from around here, so it's OK," & are typically very polite to us.


no kidding? i did not think of it this way. it sounds amazing though. i am visiting my polish homeland next year and sooo hope to have this experience. thanks for the perspective.


Nope, no kidding. I'm very fortunate to live in a place with immigrants from all over the world... a full 1/3rd of people in the city were born outside of the country, so there's a mix of nearly every culture on the planet here. I can venture around to different parts of the city and immerse myself in another country's culture, or attend some ethnic festival or celebration, without ever having to go anywhere to experience it. In a way I think it's a part of why I've managed to blend in as well as I have for 30 years before figuring out my own AS, as there are so many cultures here with so many different ways of doing things that my own social impairments weren't as obvious to me or them when I comfortably fit in well enough with any group I joined. An AS friend of mine is a bit of a world traveller and I now know that it's this foreigner/social impairment thing that makes him feel so comfortable just dropping out of the sky and inserting himself into a brand new culture wherever he goes - and why I'm the same way travelling anywhere I have gone. I haven't done much travelling with my twin brother, but he's a cruise travel agent and has travelled the world.. I do wonder what his internal thought processes and experiences have been with all of this, but he won't accept/acknowledge his own AS yet let alone learn details like this about it, so I won't know for a while if ever lol.


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MannyBoo
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21 Mar 2013, 3:35 am

the grass seems greener on the other side...



goldfish21
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21 Mar 2013, 3:55 am

MannyBoo wrote:
the grass seems greener on the other side...


How do you mean? This can be interpreted in a few different ways pertaining to this thread and I don't want to make any assumptions.. care to clarify?


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21 Mar 2013, 10:17 am

Ichinin wrote:
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Calm down and reread the post. You misunderstood it.


No, the OP made a generalisation based upon one experience.


The OP pointed out how social norms vary between cultures. This is uncontroversial. It isn't "a generalization based upon one experience", it is part of the definition of "culture" itself. He worded it in a shocking way to point out how inappropriate it is to view aspie "culture shock" (unfamiliarity with social norms) in such a negative and judgmental light.

That, or I am insane.



Chloe33
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01 Apr 2013, 8:08 am

Each and every one of us is foreign to someone else who is foreign...



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01 Apr 2013, 9:52 am

muff wrote:
so if people on the spectrum could be perceived by the senses to be from a different culture (say, autism culture) maybe the NT world would act more like my department in their response to us (welcoming, patient, helpful, accommodating, understanding, etc.).

We're likely experienced as someone from another culture, my own mother wholeheartedly agreed when I gave her that description, so I assume it's accurate.

goldfish21 wrote:
muff wrote:
so if people on the spectrum could be perceived by the senses to be from a different culture (say, autism culture) maybe the NT world would act more like my department in their response to us (welcoming, patient, helpful, accommodating, understanding, etc.).


This is a well documented Autistic "thing." (It's not quite a trait, is it?)

There are many ASD people who travel to foreign cultures and fit in just fine because their social shortcomings are excused as being a foreigner, not someone who lacks social intuition.


I have heard of that, but my experience is different. Sure, differences might be chalked up to being cultural (although that'll only fly as long as they don't know too many from your culture). I find cultural and linguistic differences to add to the difficulties of communication, not making it easier at all. Foreign cultures are always an extra barrier to me. That's not to say that I haven't known nice immigrants, I have, but dealing with them is even harder than dealing with NTs of my own culture IME. I've gone to school with lots of immigrants and I find them more challenging than Norwegians by far. Common culture and background is easier than something very different.


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littlebee
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01 Apr 2013, 10:23 am

muff wrote:
a girl from china visited my workplace here in detroit, and she struck me as a tremendously intelligent person who possessed an above average amount of woo (that was my objective, rational opinion).

she spent a day with our department and after she left, i reflected back, and concluded that she was severely socially impaired and seemed, well, cognitively impaired as well. she couldnt possibly know the most basic social rules, and remarked on information rather dumbly, 'what is slavery?' being the best example.

and my point is this: obviously she is not impaired in her own culture (or we wouldnt have flown this bright young gal over to us and entertained her/paid for her to be here for a day) but she could be greatly considered to be impaired should one view her with their senses as being a native detroiter.

so if people on the spectrum could be perceived by the senses to be from a different culture (say, autism culture) maybe the NT world would act more like my department in their response to us (welcoming, patient, helpful, accommodating, understanding, etc.).


People from different cultures have different contexts and different patterns of communication; i am around many people from China all day long and I learn their patterns and the patterns of other cultures I am around because such learning is a delight and joy.( I admit this study most people do not do). The disorder in my opinion is where you switch your thinking to that the nt should adjust to you.. It is obviously a fantasy, but that aside, why not learn to understand them? The thinking you are doing seems backwards. Now why should they think backwards to accommodate you? That makes no sense, especially if they are the majority.



naturalplastic
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01 Apr 2013, 11:50 am

There is nothing to debate about the first part of the OP observation.

A NT who arrives in another nation -with another language, and culture, is rendered into something like an autistic or an aspie because they become socially impaired in the new setting.

And an aspie traveling abroad gets more patience than he would at home for his social ineptitude because the locals blame his ineptitude on him being a foriegner.

Kinda stating the obvious.

Should we expect the workplace to accomidate us the way the OP's office accomidated that VIP young lady from China?

Thats a different question.

It only been recently that that question could even be asked because its only recently that aspergers has existed as a label.

Contrary to what whiners are always saying: labels are not bad. Labels are good..

IF you are labeled as having a condition that makes you socially impaired than in theory workplaces could be held accountable for having to accomidarte you for having that condition.

But there are other issues.

If the OP's office had been visited by a suspected aspie like Albert Einstein, or by Bill Gates, they would have treated the guest atleast as royally as the did the chinese girl, and wouldve been blind to any eccentricities- because-the said guests were (like the chinese girl) VIP's. And they would do that even if they didnt know aspergers from a hole in the ground.

But if most of us got hired and tried to survive in his office- they would not be anywhere near as tolerant of us as they were of the girl from china.

There was a guy we hired who told me the first moment I met him ( he had a state appointed job coach following him around on the job the first day) all of his issues -he had several diagnosed mental problems. Most of this conditions meant nothing to me-but in the laundry list was "aspergers".

Never told him that I was also an aspie but I took an interest in him.

Much later a young lady I worked with struck up a conservation with me about "your buddy"-as she called this aspie guy. She had nothing but complaints about his demeanor. She happened be an hispanic immigrant - so here we had both- a culture vs culture AND nt vs aspie issues going on.

Anyway- I would say "oh - youre talking about that challenged guy". She didnt know what I meant- so I had to explain that "challenged" was a polite american way of saying "messed up in the head- or handicapped". But went on to say that thats exactly the point - that I happened to know that he has diagnosed mental issues - so that he shouldnt be judged by the same yardstick as everyone else.
And that you have to cut him some slack.

We talked somemore I had to agree that she had legitimate complaints about him and his social weirdness- that aspergers wasnt really an excuse for. Including a time she mentioned that he was gripping about "all of these immigrants".

The guy eventually was fired. Though I had been rooting for him to suceed- I was kinda releaved to hear that he was gone.

But the point is that it would be nice if companies accomidated specturmites, but as my experience shows - they both ARE starting to do that (our company had made some kind of deal with the state to hire the guy I worked with), but at the same time there is a limit to what a company do. At the end of the day- you still have to conform and ty to act nt.

At the end of the day "when in Rome" applies to both travelers and to stay at home aspies.
Eventually-you gotta do what the Romans do.



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01 Apr 2013, 12:36 pm

I am a foreigner living in Australia.

It's very multicultural here and that seems to cover my neurological difference to some extent because people are used to different kinds of people. However, by now I know that cultural differences and neurological differences are not the same (at least in my opinion because I don't know anyone else who is neurologically different). People accept cultural differences very easily (though there are some very narrow-minded people who are xenophobic) and I can see cultural differences are no barrier in forming friendships. But my neurological differences are not really recognized as "differences", but are regarded more as bad/strange behavior because they don't know how my brain works. So people don't have the tolerance that they have for cultural differences, for neurological differences. Well, that's my experience.



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01 Apr 2013, 2:45 pm

I spend a fair amount of time abroad. In English speaking countries it is much the same but in Europe with the language difference I feel much less as if I don't fit in because I don't expect to. However, I find my neighbours there much more pleasant as they actually say hello to me which they rarely do in England.



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01 Apr 2013, 3:15 pm

naturalplastic wrote:
Contrary to what whiners are always saying: labels are not bad. Labels are good...


Labels can be either good OR bad depending upon subjective context. This is, in my opinion, a key point.