People stare at me in public

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Highly_Autistic
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12 Jun 2019, 7:28 am

Even some people cross the road when they see me. Am i really that ugly? Is my life over? Will i ever feel and be treated like a normal human?



kraftiekortie
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12 Jun 2019, 8:07 am

Forget about those idiots.



EzraS
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12 Jun 2019, 8:15 am

I get gawked at all the time when out in public. Especially by little kids when I'm at a place like McDonald's.



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12 Jun 2019, 9:46 am

Highly_Autistic wrote:
Even some people cross the road when they see me. Am i really that ugly? Is my life over? Will i ever feel and be treated like a normal human?


While it can be about appearance, I think it's more likely that people stare and avoid you because of your bodylanguage and/or the way you move (I get stared at a lot for these reasons; apparently there's something "off" about the way I move.) Unless you look very different from the people around you, it's highly likely not because of your appearance.



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12 Jun 2019, 10:04 am

"People stare at me in public". Why????

There might be several reasons and without seeing you I can only throw out some guesses.

1. It might be the clothes you are wearing.
2. It might be the way you are walking.
3. It might be the way your body and face look, such as physical defects, scars, tattoos, augmentation such as nose rings, lack of symmetry.
4. They might be misinterpreting your intentions by looking at your eyes or the area around your eyes.
5. There is also the possibility that you may be oversensitive and misreading their actions.

So find someone you can trust and have them give you an assessment and figure out the problem.

Some things you can changed and somethings you cannot. For example you can select different clothes to wear.

As far as #4, I have decided to deprive NTs of misreading my intentions from my eyes by wearing a type of sunglasses. I use mirrored glasses with no tint. Therefore they are only minimally dark and can be worn indoors. I choose a blue mirror finish because it is a pleasing color.

Blue is peaceful, tranquil and symbolizes loyalty. Blue is reliable and responsible. It exhibits inner security and confidence.



kraftiekortie
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12 Jun 2019, 12:19 pm

People stare at me because I howl and meow in the subway. I've gotten used to it.



fluffysaurus
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12 Jun 2019, 3:00 pm

Crossing the road does not suggest to me that you are ugly. They might be nervous of you if they interpret your

body language as drunk or on drugs. Or they may simply be concerned that they will not react to you in the right

(PC) way. NTs are used to being able to read other people's body language so if yours confuses them some may

avoid you for this reason.



Joe90
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12 Jun 2019, 8:06 pm

I've had this problem for as long as I can remember, but it's not because I look or act weird. It's just some sort of unavoidable vibe I give off, and this vibe makes me self-loathe and even agoraphobic. I might as well be deformed, and it makes me feel unhappy.

I know that there is a dress code when out in public, and so I do follow these dress codes religiously, so that I don't stand out. I'm good with fashion anyway (just because I'm Aspie it doesn't mean I don't know jack about fashion and trends). It's summer now, and I like to wear summer clothes, but my comfy trainers do not go with my shorts, so I have to wear summer shoes, which are comfy but aren't designed to walk in as much as I do (I walk to work), so I have got severe calluses underneath my toes.

I hate it when Aspies bang on about body language and that NTs only stare because you could be a potential murderer judging by your body language. I don't think I look like a murderer, being so I'm a female (people usually stereotype men as being murderers), and I look like I wouldn't say boo to a goose. I generally look ahead as not to catch anyone staring, but I still see their gaze in my periphery, which is worse because why are they taking the trouble to look at me if I'm not looking at them?

I do like the mirror sunglasses idea. I'm thinking of getting some. I feel more relaxed when I know people can't see my eyes.
It's mostly other females who stare at me, which I find insulting. If guys stare I feel more flattered, because it could mean they like me. But if too many guys are staring I do feel intimidated. That doesn't happen often though. But females staring does destroy my self-esteem and make me feel self-conscious.

Discussing this sort of thing on WP doesn't help though. Most Aspies assume that all Aspies lack self-awareness or aren't too bothered about being judged. One time I tried to tell myself, and other self-conscious Aspies here, that the mind can be a very strong thing and that humans can see, think or feel things that are completely irrational, like when you watch a horror movie at night then afterwards your mind convinces you that your home is suddenly haunted, and you feel paranoid that you are not alone, even though you know full well that your home isn't going to suddenly become a haunted sanctuary just because you've watched a horror movie. But the threats seem real, so real that you jump into your bed before anything can get you and you hide beneath the covers to feel safe from whatever your brain has convinced you that is lurking about. Anyway, I thought that was a good analogy to use to describe how strong the mind is, and it can work the same with social anxiety. But then a few replies said that isn't the case, and that I really am being laughed at or stared at by other people. :roll:


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naturalplastic
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12 Jun 2019, 8:24 pm

Wish we could see what you look like when you walk down the street.

If folks act like you have a third eye ball in your forehead, when you don't have a third eyeball in your forehead, then you have some kind of issue, but on that could be solved.

If you wear plaid pants, AND a plaid shirt, at the same time. And have one shirt tail tucked in, and the other not, then that could be enough to get stares.



TazCrystal
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12 Jun 2019, 8:41 pm

I get stared at in public too. I think it is because people think I act weird. I also have an aide with me a lot of the time so people are probably curious about that and why I would need an aide. I also flap my hands sometimes or rock when I am sitting down sometimes. I also look don't really look up when I walk either. I don't feel comfortable doing that for some reason.



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13 Jun 2019, 4:33 am

I haven't been out much lately, only to go to work. Otherwise I stay indoors and feel too self-conscious to go out in public, having to face all the staring people laughing at me and judging me. I think of going to the town center to do some shopping or have something to eat, but social anxiety overcomes me and I hide away in my home where nobody can judge me. I've even put off seeing my friends, and I just text or ring them instead of going out to see them. The only time I go out (besides going to work) is when my boyfriend's off work and we go out together. But otherwise I stay indoors and only go out when it's time to go to work (which is late afternoons).


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Mountain Goat
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13 Jun 2019, 4:53 am

Here are two thoughts. People stare at me sometimes because there is something about me that is different. It is likely that if I ask a person who is staring at me what it is that made them look they may not actually know. Sometimes they will know and say something like "You walk different" or something along those lines.
In a way it is natural. But don't let it get to you as in most cases of people staring at you, the people who stare are not intending it to make you feel uncomfortable. It is just a natural reaction to seeing something different.
Think of it this way. Where I live, if you try to drive an Alvis 12/50 through the village, people will stare. They don't mean any harm by it.
The problem is when we may have something like the way we walk or something different about us... Maybe our body language... Talk about staring... I sometimes stare and don't know I am doing it until I "Click out of it" and realize I had a mind blank moment or I was deep in thought. Haha! Not sure why.. Obviously people will be thinking "Is he ok?" if I do that. Do others do that? No idea! Haha!
Is a bit like a modern car with stop start technology.. Haha! My mind can automatically switch off... and automatically switch back on when it needs to. Is a bit like having general anisthetic but with no groggyness ad an instant switch back on... No idea how long it lasts. It can't last long though when this happens otherwize others would notice. :)


What I am saying is... don't worry about it. Just enyoy life... And if you are percieved to be different, make the most of it. :) You may have tallents that no one else has! :)


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13 Jun 2019, 6:48 am

I think for me it's mostly my posture and movement, and sometimes those little "zone out" moments that Mountain Goat was talking about.

If there's a bunch of kids on a street corner looking for someone to be cheeky to, I just know it's going to be me. I've been followed around shops and bus stations by security guards so often that I think I could probably make good money as a "decoy" for a criminal gang of some kind. Zoning-out when I'm waiting in queues happens a lot, so I'm often holding people up while someone tries to get my attention. And when I'm walking, it's always head-down, leaning forward about 15 degrees, and bombing along twice as fast as everyone else - and quite often muttering to myself, because I quite often don't realise that I've slipped into speaking my inner monologue out loud.

Gym teachers and drill sergeants in Boys Brigade could never get across to me what they were wanting me to do with my body. I was certain that I was marching just like the other boys, but I never was according to the sergeant, no matter how many times he got the other lads to demonstrate what he thought I was doing wrong. The first time I saw myself on video in a social setting, which was only a few years ago, I was really shocked at how obvious this all is - not just that I appear so different to the other people in the videos, but that it's so different from what I think I'm doing inside my own head.

All in all, I'm not really surprised that I stick out like a sore thumb.


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13 Jun 2019, 6:59 am

Trogluddite wrote:
I think for me it's mostly my posture and movement ... The first time I saw myself on video in a social setting, which was only a few years ago, I was really shocked at how obvious this all is - not just that I appear so different to the other people in the videos, but that it's so different from what I think I'm doing inside my own head.


The first time I saw myself on video, it was also alarming! It was a Christmas video taken at my mother's house about 20 years ago. I can't even describe how shocked I was by my sitting postures and my walking actions. Every movement looked contrived or unnatural, almost robotic, and my affect was completely flat. This could be because I was at my mother's where I'm particularly uncomfortable and also mute, but I sense that's how I appear in most situations. I can almost hear my mental commentary coaxing me along, but the end result was still very flawed. I stimmed through the whole video, too. :(

It was really an eye opener, but it gives me a Catch-22 because the more I try to correct this, the more I overthink it and the less natural I'll appear.



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13 Jun 2019, 7:50 am

IsabellaLinton wrote:
...the more I try to correct this, the more I overthink it and the . less natural I'll appear.

Throughout my life, the moments when it dawns on me that I've been spotted, when the self-consciousness kicks in, have always felt as if I'm suddenly controlling someone else's body, and whoever they were, they'd had a bit too much to drink. I quite often start weaving a bit or rebound off walls and street furniture. Jibes about being drunk or a druggie are par for the course.

Even when alone in the countryside, this "concentration effect" can happen. I'll happily skip over puddles and stiles so long as my mind is on something else. But if I focus on where I'm stepping, I can easily find myself perched on one leg at the edge of a puddle, completely unable to judge whether I'll be able to stride across it or not. On finally chancing wet feet, I'll then discover that I could easily have stepped three times as far, promptly followed by stepping straight into the middle of the next puddle that I thought was only a bunny step. Ducking to go under things which are way above my head is also a routine thing, as is bumping my head when I get it wrong the other way. I injure myself far more often when I'm paying attention than when I just let the auto-pilot handle it.

The world itself doesn't seem to change in any way, as in "Alice in Wonderland Syndrome"; it's definitely something to do with my messed up senses of proprioception and embodiment - looking at my own reflection sometimes gives me the most uncanny sensation that the body in the mirror might be the one connected to my brain.


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