Not interested unless it is about them

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GregCav
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08 Aug 2014, 12:34 am

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What I said was "Yesterday I took my cat to the vets to have her given an injection to kill her. I did it because she was very ill, and it was better to end her life now rather than let her continue to suffer in pain".


This is a statement. It stands alone as you giving me information. Probably information that I didn't want to hear.
Did the other personk know the cat, had they ever met? If not, then your telling him about somebody elses animal that he's never met, never will meet, and that made zero impact on his life. Why tell him anything at all?


I'm constantly amaized by my dad's partner, telling me about people I've never met and every little thing they did and said. Why?
These are people I've never met, how on earth am I supposed to care about what somebody said to somebody else last week? She'll talk for 5 minutes about a conversation between two people I've never heard of before. The point of the conversation completely zero or lost in a long winded bla bla bla bla...snore.... A waste of 5 minutes of my life I could have spent better.

In reponce to you; I may have said something like "oh, that's a pitty". Not careing in the slightest about a cat I've never met in my life, and if I didn't know you very well, then that'd be a big "so what" for me too.

Of course; If I know you well, I'd be a lot more animated about it, because I would know the cat, and would indeed care about it's death. I'd also likely be lost as to what to say about it to you personaly. But I would be upset at loosing my/your cat friend.

As far as Empathy is concerned. I think your example doesn't actualy touch on empathy much at all. Empathy is always stronger with people you know.

Anyway, I always score low on such tests, so perhaps its just me.

Quote:
Occasionally they may text/email me asking how I am, but whatever I write the only thing they respond to is the ".... and how are you?" that I always write at the end of my message.


These sorts of questions will usualy go unanswered by me. Because they are a non-sensical question to begin with.
You're asking me to explain "how" I am. But I don't know how I am, I just am. I don't know how I got to be this way, it just happened. And I've never made sence of the "are you" part. "are" is a time independent word. It's an indeterminate time in the past to the forseeable future. It's like an "am". I am. I are. There's also a srot of pluralness about it. But I'm clearly an individual. I'm an "am", not an "are". And I sure can't explain how I am. I just am, it wasn't my choice.



AmethystRose
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08 Aug 2014, 12:35 am

StarCity wrote:
(. . .)
I know that it is good manners to say "well done" to someone for an achievement, and to show an interest in other people. I do it because it is what I have been told is the right thing to do.
(. . .)
What I can't understand is that the inability for someone to empathize with another person appears to have nothing to do with how low/high functioning they are on the autistic spectrum.
(. . .)


So... what if no one had taught you that it was good manners to respond the way you've learned to respond?

I ask this question rhetorically, to point out that manners are cultural construct--a thing that must be taught and learned. Even so-called "NTs" have to be taught manners, and have to learn them.

I believe that the "NT" penchant for weaving social webs around themselves from birth leads them to learn manners more quickly, because manners are simply more relevant to a social-web-weaving-"NT" childhood. :geek:



olympiadis
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08 Aug 2014, 1:44 pm

GregCav wrote:
This is a statement. It stands alone as you giving me information. Probably information that I didn't want to hear.
Did the other personk know the cat, had they ever met? If not, then your telling him about somebody elses animal that he's never met, never will meet, and that made zero impact on his life. Why tell him anything at all?


Because it would serve their identity.
It is an aggressive expectation in nature. I say that because if the expectation isn't met, then it calls for some kind of punishment or consequence.
The requirement is for you to submit to the expectation and show the other person that you recognize and respect their identity, while putting yourself, at least temporarily, below their identity in a social hierarchy.
The misfortune of the poor cat was for the most part irrelevant, but the situation was filtered for use by identity (what does it mean to me? what can it do for me?). The identity software in the mind will prompt a person to throw out a statement like that "fishing" for the proper response.
To receive the proper response is to reap the chemical reward in the brain that will convince you that you actually feel better about yourself at that point.

If the other person does not respond to this form of aggressive set-up or "trap", then the first person most likely assumes the second person is being aggressive towards them in refusing to acknowledge their identity or place in hierarchy. The first person may become upset, feel defensive, or threatened by the second person, simply because they didn't respond at all.

To an alien observer out in reality, this whole process looks nonsensical because it all completely exists within human imagination.


Once again I go back to my suggestion that NTs treat the conceptual world as "real", or their primary reality, where ASD folks do not treat it as primary reality.



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08 Aug 2014, 3:17 pm

Sorry about your cat. Pets can be very close companions, and the bond strong. Doing the right thing by them is the best you can do and then just allow yourself time to grieve. A new pet when and if the time is right may very well help you feel not so sad.

As far as showing interest in others, empathy, etc, I don't think your average NT is much different then those with ASD. Thought they are probably better at saying the expected protocols. Most people are much more self centered then altruistic. But I also think a degree of this is normal and perhaps part of human self preservation instinct. Its just annoying when it also dominates everything else besides basics, and also hogs the conversation and subject matter, etc.

There are several qualities in life I really respect or value. The ability to have interest and care about others is one of those. But as wihh many valuable things, its also not very common.



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08 Aug 2014, 3:48 pm

olympiadis wrote:
GregCav wrote:
This is a statement. It stands alone as you giving me information. Probably information that I didn't want to hear.
Did the other personk know the cat, had they ever met? If not, then your telling him about somebody elses animal that he's never met, never will meet, and that made zero impact on his life. Why tell him anything at all?


Because it would serve their identity.
It is an aggressive expectation in nature. I say that because if the expectation isn't met, then it calls for some kind of punishment or consequence.
The requirement is for you to submit to the expectation and show the other person that you recognize and respect their identity, while putting yourself, at least temporarily, below their identity in a social hierarchy.
The misfortune of the poor cat was for the most part irrelevant, but the situation was filtered for use by identity (what does it mean to me? what can it do for me?). The identity software in the mind will prompt a person to throw out a statement like that "fishing" for the proper response.
To receive the proper response is to reap the chemical reward in the brain that will convince you that you actually feel better about yourself at that point.

If the other person does not respond to this form of aggressive set-up or "trap", then the first person most likely assumes the second person is being aggressive towards them in refusing to acknowledge their identity or place in hierarchy. The first person may become upset, feel defensive, or threatened by the second person, simply because they didn't respond at all.

To an alien observer out in reality, this whole process looks nonsensical because it all completely exists within human imagination.


Once again I go back to my suggestion that NTs treat the conceptual world as "real", or their primary reality, where ASD folks do not treat it as primary reality.


I agree this is so common.

I learned from a book, and then from experience, that if they are playing a game you will know because if you call them
on it with an unscripted response, they will get angry. The book was "Games People Play". I felt like a light was switched on.


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09 Aug 2014, 11:30 am

StarCity wrote:
With the other people I know personally (aquaitances/friends) I have noticed time & time again that they do not respond to texts or emails unless I am asking them "How are you?". "What have you done today?". "How do you feel about ... ?". ect.
If I tell them something about me; such as something I have done, or something I have achieved they don't reply. But if I ask them something about themselves, then they do reply.

Occasionally they may text/email me asking how I am, but whatever I write the only thing they respond to is the ".... and how are you?" that I always write at the end of my message.


I've had the complete opposite experience. I would write to people and share some of what was going on with me and also ask how they were doing. And they would respond by only talking about me and whatever I had said, and would tell me nothing whatsoever about themselves. It felt very dismissive.



olympiadis
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09 Aug 2014, 1:35 pm

I have a feeling that most of this line of thinking would be considered by NTs to be excessive analyzation or over-thinking. They might suggest just using the normal appropriate social responses and immediately move on without thinking about the situation at all. I also think that when confronted with a situation like this requiring a lot of analyzation or thinking, that they often attempt to divert or change the subject, like "hey let's go to the mall", or something similar.

I know that whenever I ask questions for clarification that NTs seem to become very uncomfortable and "put off" that I am trying to analyze things. They often think I'm directly accusing them of something like deceit when I ask them questions.

It would stand to reason that if they had put effort into a process of deceit, then they would not be happy about it failing or becoming undone.

As far as interacting with aspies, I don't get the opportunity often enough to feel confident about reporting trends, but what I have observed is that they don't seem "put off" by analyzing or trying to figure something out.



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09 Aug 2014, 2:38 pm

dianthus wrote:
StarCity wrote:
With the other people I know personally (aquaitances/friends) I have noticed time & time again that they do not respond to texts or emails unless I am asking them "How are you?". "What have you done today?". "How do you feel about ... ?". ect.
If I tell them something about me; such as something I have done, or something I have achieved they don't reply. But if I ask them something about themselves, then they do reply.

Occasionally they may text/email me asking how I am, but whatever I write the only thing they respond to is the ".... and how are you?" that I always write at the end of my message.


I've had the complete opposite experience. I would write to people and share some of what was going on with me and also ask how they were doing. And they would respond by only talking about me and whatever I had said, and would tell me nothing whatsoever about themselves. It felt very dismissive.


Yes I have one correspondent who does this. I have also done it in the past with a friend who wanted to stay in touch but
had proved she wasn't trustworthy with information. The relationship still didn't last., but I didn't want to be the one to end
it.


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Chickenbird
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09 Aug 2014, 2:44 pm

olympiadis wrote:
I have a feeling that most of this line of thinking would be considered by NTs to be excessive analyzation or over-thinking. They might suggest just using the normal appropriate social responses and immediately move on without thinking about the situation at all. I also think that when confronted with a situation like this requiring a lot of analyzation or thinking, that they often attempt to divert or change the subject, like "hey let's go to the mall", or something similar.

I know that whenever I ask questions for clarification that NTs seem to become very uncomfortable and "put off" that I am trying to analyze things. They often think I'm directly accusing them of something like deceit when I ask them questions.

It would stand to reason that if they had put effort into a process of deceit, then they would not be happy about it failing or becoming undone.

As far as interacting with aspies, I don't get the opportunity often enough to feel confident about reporting trends, but what I have observed is that they don't seem "put off" by analyzing or trying to figure something out.


I found people often got defensive if I asked why they felt a certain way, but would relax if I said "Look, I know why I would feel
upset about this, but why do you feel upset? "


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starkid
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09 Aug 2014, 2:52 pm

Chickenbird wrote:
I found people often got defensive if I asked why they felt a certain way, but would relax if I said "Look, I know why I would feel
upset about this, but why do you feel upset? "


Yeah, they assume that you asking them implies that you don't think that they should be upset.


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Kiriae
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09 Aug 2014, 3:40 pm

StarCity wrote:
Hi,
I am diagnosed as being a person with aspergers/ASD, however I seem VERY different than the few people I personally know, who have also been diagnosed as having aspergers/ASD.

With the other people I know personally (aquaitances/friends) I have noticed time & time again that they do not respond to texts or emails unless I am asking them "How are you?". "What have you done today?". "How do you feel about ... ?". ect.
If I tell them something about me; such as something I have done, or something I have achieved they don't reply. But if I ask them something about themselves, then they do reply.

I also recognized this and I have a theory. Do you have prosopagnosia as co-morbid? I do. And it makes me pretty self centered. I just get bored when someone speaks about themselves unless it is something I can relate to and reply by describing my own experiences. I care about people but I am not interested in their personal lifes unless it hits something in my own life. I am living in a box and the conversation is pretty one sided - it only goes out, only limited amount of people information gets in. I think it is somehow related to the fact I can't recognize people faces. I can't explain it but I feel like the face recognition is only a part of a much worse issue that makes me hard to remember names and all other informations about people around me and remember them as a whole. I believe thats what happens if prosopagnosia hits someone on the spectrum. Every personal information is just a single information and there is nothing to connect it with because I can't remember people well. Remembering everything about them is just too hard. All people are just the same to my stupid brain. If I enknowledge a personal information it goes randomly to a person I know that shares similar traits and I have to focus to connect it to a right person. And it still get mixed in my memory, as soon as I stop focusing. It is not worth it. So I don't care to know. I only remember personal information about very limited amount of people close to me and I still know about them much less than anybody who knows them. My mom for example knows more personal information about my friends than I do.

I would answer properly to the information about poor cat but only because I experienced it too and I know how it feels. I would probably say "I know how you feel" and tell you about my own cat, then ask you what was your cat sickness, then tell a lot about the sickness and ask you how you tried to cure it and then advice you to get a new cat in a specific time (since in case of some cat illness you can't get a cat within a few months or it gets sick too because of the germs in house). But if you told me something like: "My aunt died. I am so sad about this. She was always so nice to me..." I would probably change topic after eventually saying "Sorry to hear that." if I realized I am supposed to say so. But inside I would just wonder "Why the hell she wants me to know it? The aunt is already dead so I can't even give an advice...". Because I can't relate to something I never experienced personally.
Basically if you tell me about cat I will remember you as someone who lost a cat too because my brain will tick: "she got same experience as I, she is connected to me by the cat" and you go to my memory with the tag "My cat died". But if you tell me your aunt died I will have no point to connect it so it gets to my memory as 2 separate informations "a stranger died", "a person says so". No tag. :arrow: Trash. :roll:

Funny thing: when I visit a strangers home a single time I can remember the building with so many details that I am able to draw a map of it even after a few years and it is accurate. But even right after leaving the house I am unable to say who exactly is the owner or tell any details about him (like hair color) even if I talked with him for a few hours. And I will not recognize him next time (it takes 4 or more times of me greeting someone to recognize the face in a specific place, 30 or more times to recognize him in other places).



Last edited by Kiriae on 09 Aug 2014, 4:03 pm, edited 4 times in total.

MrGrumpy
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09 Aug 2014, 4:02 pm

Kiriae - I need to look up 'prosopagnosia' because I recognise everything which you describe.

edit - ps - I have given this matter some thought over the years, and I came to the conclusion that because I basically don't care very much about other people, then there is no requirement for me to be able to recognise them and instantly recall all the information which most people would immediately remember.


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10 Aug 2014, 3:25 pm

MrGrumpy wrote:
Kiriae - I need to look up 'prosopagnosia' because I recognise everything which you describe.

edit - ps - I have given this matter some thought over the years, and I came to the conclusion that because I basically don't care very much about other people, then there is no requirement for me to be able to recognise them and instantly recall all the information which most people would immediately remember.


I have an idea that people who basically don't care very much about other people just do not receive anything from them, and never have. For example some NTS place a high value on how they dress because they get rewards or punishment accordingly. Many people on the spectrum are intelligent enough and sensitive enough to dress well if they choose, but there is no motivation because the rewards are not forthcoming for people who are socially challenged. In short, nothing much to gain or lose. I think NTs who try to give aspies makeovers (as seen on tv) are really missing this point.


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MrGrumpy
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12 Aug 2014, 2:34 pm

Chickenbird wrote:
I think NTs who try to give aspies makeovers (as seen on tv) are really missing the point.

I agree - it's a bit like trying to persuade paraplegics that they ought to be able to dance.


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Chickenbird
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12 Aug 2014, 2:41 pm

MrGrumpy wrote:
Chickenbird wrote:
I think NTs who try to give aspies makeovers (as seen on tv) are really missing the point.

I agree - it's a bit like trying to persuade paraplegics that they ought to be able to dance.


MrGrumpy that is actually the opposite of my point :p I believe most aspies could "dress to impress" if they put their minds to it,
but there are no rewards forthcoming if they do, and they know it. Paraplegics OTOH actually cannot dance.

(I am not using the example of clothing because I am very interested in clothes, it's just the most obvious one to me)


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