family members often undermine my skills or intelligence

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Emu Egg
Emu Egg

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Joined: 10 Jun 2012
Age: 30
Gender: Male
Posts: 4

09 Jan 2017, 7:58 pm

I dont know if this is specific to my family, or to the families of spergs in general, but i often deal with being underestimated and having my advice or abilities ignored.

I think the perfect example of this was around the time my half sister was 2. For a little background information, my dad is a sperg, but doesnt consider himself on the spectrum because he grew up in a time where people didnt really get diagnosed for things like that. He is also a doctor and is very financially successful and wont humor the idea that there could be anything mentally off about him because of this fact. Also i have two siblings; I have an older brother who was fortunate enough to not inherit my dad's autism, who has a PHD and is married to doctor. And i have a half sister who is 10 years old and seems to be struggling with autism that is more severe than mine or my dad's.

But when my half sister was 2, i could sense that she might have been born with aspergers. I remember thinking "the sperg is strong in that one." im not entirely sure what gave her away, but something about her resonated within me and i was almost positive she was autistic. She was unusually shy for a 2 year old girl. I immediately came forward to my dad, brother, and his wife with my thoughts. i wanted her to get help dealing with her condition early on, something i wish i could have had. All three of them firmly denied the idea. they told me it wasnt at all unusual for a girl her age to be shy. fast forward two years and my half sister is 4 years old. she had such bad social anxiety that she wouldnt speak in front of strangers. again i raise my concern to my siblings and they reject the idea , although not as quickly this time. again they told me being shy isnt so unusual for a little girl. by the time she was 6 years old, she has such bad anxiety that she wouldnt open her christmas presents in front of people. And then FINALLY my dad and brother are like "ok maybe there's something wrong here." she could have been getting social help 4 years earlier if they had listened to me. but none of them ever do. I thought maybe they would listen to me on this one single thing. Maybe three doctors would have enough sense to listen to the guy with aspergers concerning someone else with aspergers. but now shes 10 years old and her teachers dont really know what to do with her because her social anxiety is inhibiting her educational experience.

But that is just one example. another problem i have with my family is that they seem to think i can only be good at one thing. I pick up skills pretty quickly as i tend to become completely engrossed in whatever my interests currently are, as is common for people with aspergers. But my family doesnt seem to understand this. To this day, whenever i show a sign of being good at anything, they say "oh you should have this accupation!" as if that's the only thing im good at. I thought this would stop once i became successful and had a good career, but it didnt. I was at a christmas party at my brothers house and he had a cheese platter laid out. im eating one and ask "what is this, horseradish havarti?" and my brother says "thats exactly what it is, you should be a sommelier" and my dad who has been convinced for years that cooking is the only thing im good at says "no he should be a chef!" and i have to remind everyone that the only thing i should be is a mechanical engineer, because that's what i am. I went to Purdue for engineering school and work for a great company and my dad still thinks i should go to culinary school when being a chef sounds like the most miserable job in existence for someone with aspergers.

anyway that was my rant for the day.

does anyone else deal family members undermining your abilities because what they think they know about autism?

Yellow-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Woodpecker

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Joined: 3 Aug 2016
Age: 27
Gender: Female
Posts: 53

10 Jan 2017, 1:11 pm

I have a pretty similar experience to you OP. My family and most of all my mother have a lot of the time used my diagnosis as an excuse to be overly controlling and ignore the abilities and accomplishments I actually have, but if I talk to someone outside of my family I usually receive compliments about how intelligent and knowledgeable I am.