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gcfleetwood
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16 Apr 2014, 2:35 am

So, this is going to sound a little interesting and possibly offensive. First off, I should just say that yes, I have a diagnosed case of AS. I'm not some ***hat going around thinking I should bring salvation to the poor suffering AS heathens. Anyway, I have a friend who's a couple of years younger than me (I'm a college freshman if that's a good reference point). He basically reminds me of myself when I was younger, borderline anti-social, paranoid about people and nearly incapable of functioning normally within a group. He even has a few of the same habits like swearing profusely whenever he's uncomfortable (I'm sure that's not exactly uncommon). I, on the other hand, have gotten to the point where no one would think I'm an aspie unless I tell them, although I do still come off as a little atypical (read: kind of like an ***hole). I just want to talk to him about it, see if I could give him a few pointers to help him do better in the future (i.e. post-high school). The problem is I'm not 100% sure he's on the spectrum because he's never really admitted it, but he reminds me so much of myself at another time that I'm almost certain. That and everyone else I've mentioned it to agrees (which, of course, means almost nothing). I just don't want to cross any lines or come off like a presumptuous dick, but I feel like I could really do some good for him. Yet I'm conflicted because I myself never wanted help (but I'm the kind of arrogant ***hole who won't take help from anyone). Really I just want to talk to him, but I'm not sure how to go about it or even if I should. I mean, it's not like there's really anything wrong there, I just think if there's a chance that I could make his life a little easier it would be worth it.



Rascal77s
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16 Apr 2014, 3:19 am

gcfleetwood wrote:
So, this is going to sound a little interesting and possibly offensive. First off, I should just say that yes, I have a diagnosed case of AS. I'm not some ***hat going around thinking I should bring salvation to the poor suffering AS heathens. Anyway, I have a friend who's a couple of years younger than me (I'm a college freshman if that's a good reference point). He basically reminds me of myself when I was younger, borderline anti-social, paranoid about people and nearly incapable of functioning normally within a group. He even has a few of the same habits like swearing profusely whenever he's uncomfortable (I'm sure that's not exactly uncommon). I, on the other hand, have gotten to the point where no one would think I'm an aspie unless I tell them, although I do still come off as a little atypical (read: kind of like an ***hole). I just want to talk to him about it, see if I could give him a few pointers to help him do better in the future (i.e. post-high school). The problem is I'm not 100% sure he's on the spectrum because he's never really admitted it, but he reminds me so much of myself at another time that I'm almost certain. That and everyone else I've mentioned it to agrees (which, of course, means almost nothing). I just don't want to cross any lines or come off like a presumptuous dick, but I feel like I could really do some good for him. Yet I'm conflicted because I myself never wanted help (but I'm the kind of arrogant ***hole who won't take help from anyone). Really I just want to talk to him, but I'm not sure how to go about it or even if I should. I mean, it's not like there's really anything wrong there, I just think if there's a chance that I could make his life a little easier it would be worth it.


So let me get this straight- you are borderline antisocial, you're an arrogant as*hole, and you don't want to come off as a presumptuous dick but you want to make someone's life easier. Does that about sum it up? Sounds to me like with your guidance his life should be a breeze.



gcfleetwood
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16 Apr 2014, 3:31 am

Ok, borderline anti-social was a poor choice of words, I've changed. I also have a problem with habitual sarcasm. Yeah, so maybe not the best person to be giving advice. I say dick but what I mean is overcautious wuss who uses sarcasm to avoid being too personal. You happy with that? I can see you're no stranger to sarcasm yourself so I think you would understand. Obviously not trying to help him out with being a big softy and trying to help people, which I clearly suck at. Basically, the kid just goes through the day thinking everyone is constantly giving him s**t and is super withdrawn and uncomfortable as a result. I had a similar experience until I figured a few things out myself and I think I could help him get out of that rut. Is that so bad?



Rascal77s
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16 Apr 2014, 3:45 am

gcfleetwood wrote:
Ok, borderline anti-social was a poor choice of words, I've changed. I also have a problem with habitual sarcasm. Yeah, so maybe not the best person to be giving advice. I say dick but what I mean is overcautious wuss who uses sarcasm to avoid being too personal. You happy with that? I can see you're no stranger to sarcasm yourself so I think you would understand.


I've never thought of using sarcasm to avoid being too personal. It sounds like you have a much more advanced understanding of sarcasm than I do. I was using it to reframe your post to help you see how you came across i.e. someone that many people on the spectrum would try to avoid. Apparently I was successful. What I don't understand is what you're trying to accomplish with this guy. Has he indicated that he wants help?



gcfleetwood
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16 Apr 2014, 4:01 am

As to the sarcasm thing, I wind up using it in a semi-self deprecating manner to shy away from an actual description of what I think. That's how you can use sarcasm to avoid being personal, it's really a personality flaw that I've been working on. That paragraph might be funny if you read it as if it were a monologue delivered by a sitcom straight-man. As to the other thing, that's really the whole reason I put this up here. I'm not going to just go up to him and say "here's how you can pretend to be normal!" When I said I don't take help from anyone, I actually meant that. I'm extremely self-reliant, possibly to a fault. I can't put myself in someone else's perspective when it comes to wanting a little help here and there. I know he would be a lot better off if he didn't think everyone was out to get get him, more than once he's said (seriously, no sarcasm) "Why is everyone always so mean to me!", even when everyone's being cool to him. I mean, to be fair, he's kind of small so he's taken some s*** just by virtue of being easy to push around (Looking back I think I should emphasize here that he doesn't really get much crap for it, there's really only one incident I can think of). So no, he hasn't asked for any help. Which is not what I want to give him. I just wanted to find a way to talk to him and tell him about my experiences and how I got to the point I'm at and maybe he'd be interested, but I can't really do that because I can't even attempt to see things from someone else's perspective who isn't my somewhat bullheaded self. Really what it comes down to is the fact that I've been there, and I know that I would've heeded a few pointers that could have made my life better but I never would have asked. Which is why I came here, looking for other perspectives on the issue of whether or not it's a reasonable idea or something dickish and rude to do.



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16 Apr 2014, 4:27 am

gcfleetwood wrote:
As to the sarcasm thing, I wind up using it in a semi-self deprecating manner to shy away from an actual description of what I think. That's how you can use sarcasm to avoid being personal, it's really a personality flaw that I've been working on. That paragraph might be funny if you read it as if it were a monologue delivered by a sitcom straight-man. As to the other thing, that's really the whole reason I put this up here. I'm not going to just go up to him and say "here's how you can pretend to be normal!" When I said I don't take help from anyone, I actually meant that. I'm extremely self-reliant, possibly to a fault. I can't put myself in someone else's perspective when it comes to wanting a little help here and there. I know he would be a lot better off if he didn't think everyone was out to get get him, more than once he's said (seriously, no sarcasm) "Why is everyone always so mean to me!", even when everyone's being cool to him. I mean, to be fair, he's kind of small so he's taken some s*** just by virtue of being easy to push around (Looking back I think I should emphasize here that he doesn't really get much crap for it, there's really only one incident I can think of). So no, he hasn't asked for any help. Which is not what I want to give him. I just wanted to find a way to talk to him and tell him about my experiences and how I got to the point I'm at and maybe he'd be interested, but I can't really do that because I can't even attempt to see things from someone else's perspective who isn't my somewhat bullheaded self. Really what it comes down to is the fact that I've been there, and I know that I would've heeded a few pointers that could have made my life better but I never would have asked. Which is why I came here, looking for other perspectives on the issue of whether or not it's a reasonable idea or something dickish and rude to do.


Obviously you overcame your problems to some degree right? It sounds like you just did it through experience and through growing up. Being that he's younger than you,he might overcome these challenges through experience like you did. Maybe it's better to just let him grow on his own like you did and just be there in case something bad happens and he needs your help. Then you can step in. I found that people rarely benefit from advice that they didn't ask for. Based on your statements you know that is true. So just let him learn on his own for now, he still young.



gcfleetwood
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16 Apr 2014, 4:39 am

I said a few years younger, but that's a bit of an exaggeration. He's seventeen I'm eighteen. The real reason, I guess getting to the root of it, is the path I took to get to where I am now (still not a perfect place) wasn't exactly the right one. I basically completely numbed myself to anyone else's opinions and acted very much like a sitcom character. If you're familiar with Community, think Jeff Winger without sympathy. If not, think of someone who actually is a sarcastic ass. It's easy to not be hurt when there's no part of you exposed enough to get hurt. Kind of a bad way to go and, in my experience (I know another person who took a similar root from a similar place as well), that's been the only way I've seen to get out of it entirely on your own. I lost some years (which is somewhat comical to say considering my age), lost some experiences and wound up in a pretty dark place as a result. I just don't feel like even risking someone falling down the same hole. There's more to it than that, I've done some things to other people that I regret on the way here, but that's really the essence of it.



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16 Apr 2014, 5:25 am

I never appreciated people 'helping' me because they thought they knew what was best for me, without respecting me enough to let me decide if I wanted their help. In fact, that kind of do-gooder crap is a pet hate of mine.
I find people like that invariably have insufficient understanding of me and my issues to do anything other than create yet another complication that I have to suffer through. I often grit my teeth and 'smile' to keep the peace, or they make me feel like an ungrateful low-life. I feel like I am doing them a much bigger favour than they think they are doing me. I try to avoid them after that.

Of course, now I have learned that I am autistic, and am coming to terms with it, so I sometimes basically use it to make them back off.

In your case, you are also autistic and think you can give someone some answers that might help them. I was also in that situation, and found the person was not ready to hear, and in fact resented my good intentions. Who the hell was I to decide that my magnanimous help would save their pathetic life from the turmoil that my wise and insightful eyes were no doubt seeing? I thought I was being nice, gentle and respectful, but he thought I was presumptuous and intrusive.

If you really want to help, then be their friend, and be available, but let them work through their stuff without judgement or imposition. Let them ask a question before you give them an answer. When they are ready, they will hopefully seek out professional help. When it comes to psychological issues, people can interpret things all sorts of ways, so it really takes a trained professional to identify what is really going on - and even they can also be wrong sometimes.

This is just my opinion, but I offer it because I hope you consider the possibility that you will do more harm than good.

Having said that, at least you were respectful enough to bounce the idea off others before you bulldozed into his head space.
You should try to not put yourself down as much as you do. I understand the habit - I am really smart and have always bashed my own intelligence just because people make me feel like I have to before they even tolerate me, but now I don't. The problem is their's not mine, and if they don't want me around then I don't want them around either. You are young and I'd hate for you to wait as long as I have before you claim your right to be yourself in this crapped up world.



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16 Apr 2014, 7:25 am

^^^agreed.

It sounds like the OP means well, but unsolicited advice tends to be unwelcome advice.

Not saying it's bad advice in itself, but it strikes me as oversimplified. No one wants to be emotionally numb, but taming hypersensitivity and emotional overreaction isn't a horrible thing.



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16 Apr 2014, 7:42 am

People tend to hide their tender/altruistic feelings via sarcasm.



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16 Apr 2014, 8:10 am

gcfleetwood wrote:
As to the sarcasm thing, I wind up using it in a semi-self deprecating manner to shy away from an actual description of what I think. That's how you can use sarcasm to avoid being personal, it's really a personality flaw that I've been working on. That paragraph might be funny if you read it as if it were a monologue delivered by a sitcom straight-man. As to the other thing, that's really the whole reason I put this up here. I'm not going to just go up to him and say "here's how you can pretend to be normal!" When I said I don't take help from anyone, I actually meant that. I'm extremely self-reliant, possibly to a fault. I can't put myself in someone else's perspective when it comes to wanting a little help here and there. I know he would be a lot better off if he didn't think everyone was out to get get him, more than once he's said (seriously, no sarcasm) "Why is everyone always so mean to me!", even when everyone's being cool to him. I mean, to be fair, he's kind of small so he's taken some s*** just by virtue of being easy to push around (Looking back I think I should emphasize here that he doesn't really get much crap for it, there's really only one incident I can think of). So no, he hasn't asked for any help. Which is not what I want to give him. I just wanted to find a way to talk to him and tell him about my experiences and how I got to the point I'm at and maybe he'd be interested, but I can't really do that because I can't even attempt to see things from someone else's perspective who isn't my somewhat bullheaded self. Really what it comes down to is the fact that I've been there, and I know that I would've heeded a few pointers that could have made my life better but I never would have asked. Which is why I came here, looking for other perspectives on the issue of whether or not it's a reasonable idea or something dickish and rude to do.


It sounds like the person who can benefit most from your wisdom and experience is yourself.