What aspects of social interaction are especially tiring?

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JD12345
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22 Oct 2019, 2:45 am

What is commonly known as 'small talk'.



auntblabby
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22 Oct 2019, 2:53 am

i can do small talk alright, it is big talk that defeats me.



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22 Oct 2019, 5:27 am

JD12345 wrote:
What is commonly known as 'small talk'.


That's hard too because it is so boring. I tend to very quickly get the conversation off those rails when I can help it.



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22 Oct 2019, 5:53 am

Lying in bed at night unable to sleep, reviewing which bits of the conversation might have gone badly in ways that I didn't realise at the time, why they might have gone wrong and how disastrous the consequences might be, and why I'm an idiot for not saying the thing that has now become incredibly clear would have been a much better thing to say... oh hang on; actually maybe it wouldn't have been such a good thing to say, because it was a bit like that other conversation I had 30 years ago that I think I might have managed to understand how it all went so wrong; the one with the person I only met once ever for about five seconds which...; oh hang on a moment; now that I think of it, I've realised that there's a whole different angle that I never looked at that one from before which..., dammit!, I based my analysis of dozens of other conversations on that example, too, so now I'll have to revisit those as well, and... ... ...

Oh, but then again, maybe scripting the conversations that I think I might be possibly maybe going have at some indeterminate point in the future with someone who I'm not sure who it will be yet is worse. Hmm, it's so hard to decide. :?


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22 Oct 2019, 6:51 am

The constant necessary attempts to interpret what the other person means, what they really mean, as in, is there a subtext. Then what am I meant to do next if I narrow it down to an approximate understanding, how to respond the next time I encounter it.

Developing my own schemas for interpreting others while social blindspots and communication abilities trip me up. Then remembering what I've worked out from before... unfortunately this is most memorable when it comes from concrete experiences and the theories I have spent mental energy on usually escape me in the moment.

To unjumble my thoughts and communicate in the right order. Sometimes my sentences come out in disorganised segments and I dont notice it until someone else translates to others for me.

Figuring out interactions that I found confusing, or had triggered my sense of danger without knowing why. Was it a rational or irrational reaction that I had in my mind... melting head recipe.

I've given up on situations where I have to script on a personal level, I dont have the energy for it anymore.
I am perhaps disillusioned by how pointless it's all been in the past, as in, it hasn't had long term benefits despite the cost of the energy used.



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22 Oct 2019, 7:28 am

Hardest things for me:

Speed. I wish it would all slow down by a massive amount, so I might be able to think of a response without pressure.

Unnecessary chat. I wish people would choose words carefully, say what they mean and only speak when they really have something to say worth hearing. Otherwise companionable silence is favourable.

Number of people around at once. The fewer the better.

Wishing that others liked interacting the way I do.

Feeling like no one else I come into contact with has the same natural social inclination as me and that I am destined to be a misunderstood loner until I die.



Jon81
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22 Oct 2019, 4:17 pm

Small talk one on one.

Questions like
-How are you?
I have a really hard time understanding if it's a serious question or just a 'start conversation phrase'. And if it's a serious question I can hardly ever tell how I am. Is it strange to just be without having a mood?

Small talk in general - super boring, especially since I get the feeling the other person is feeling the same thing. So I'm trying my best to pretend enjoying the small talk in hope it will seem nicer to the other person.

Nightmare scenarios:
Running into someone after work in an unofficial setting. You see someone who only has a responsibility to be chatty with you because of their job (salesperson/teacher/doctor etc) in a situation where you need to 'say something', especially since you had a lot to talk about earlier 8O

Talks in groups

I prefer this if it's in a structured way, as in breaks at work where everybody is there for a reason and no one is getting out. It also helps if other people do the talking (to each other).

Absolute nightmare scenario: You sit with a group of people in a official meeting and everyone need to say something about themselves. "Say 3 things about yourself" :skull: I shrink in these kind of situations even more than the one on one because I feel like I'm boring everyone and I need to say something interesting or funny. I normally get extreme panic attacks because of situations like these. I have been working on that issue for some time now and at least I'm getting somewhere.


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22 Oct 2019, 4:25 pm

And the eye contact thing. It's becoming a psychological thing for me now. I just don't know what to do with my eyes. I had this issue long before I knew anything about asperger. I notice that people stare at me a lot more than I can handle when they talk. It's intimate, almost like you were kissing the other person. It's very hard to follow what someone says if I look them in the eyes. It's the same when I'm talking, I prefer looking to the side and that helps me explain things better. I normally give about 2-3 seconds of eye contact 'just because'.


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AnneOleson
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22 Oct 2019, 9:14 pm

What aspects do you find tiring Mona?



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22 Oct 2019, 9:16 pm

Jon81 wrote:
And the eye contact thing. It's becoming a psychological thing for me now. I just don't know what to do with my eyes. I had this issue long before I knew anything about asperger. I notice that people stare at me a lot more than I can handle when they talk. It's intimate, almost like you were kissing the other person. It's very hard to follow what someone says if I look them in the eyes. It's the same when I'm talking, I prefer looking to the side and that helps me explain things better. I normally give about 2-3 seconds of eye contact 'just because'.

Am able to recognize this effect . Became a expert forehead staring person.
In time , doing this became easier many years later to watch eyes .And as my brain worked and stopped interrupting me about eyes .
And focused on my thought. 《And watched the entire body.》or face as part of a whole, Unless badly distracted . But the eyes became like watching a arm or a leg.Have seen People use there faces including eyes to fabricate a image they wish you to see . These are Kinda people you may need to watch out for yourself , if they make you anxious. Intent maybe to Distract you from your feelings.
Am using feelings much more in my later years . Just my opinion.


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23 Oct 2019, 7:24 am

Jon81 wrote:
And the eye contact thing. It's becoming a psychological thing for me now. I just don't know what to do with my eyes. I had this issue long before I knew anything about asperger. I notice that people stare at me a lot more than I can handle when they talk. It's intimate, almost like you were kissing the other person. It's very hard to follow what someone says if I look them in the eyes. It's the same when I'm talking, I prefer looking to the side and that helps me explain things better. I normally give about 2-3 seconds of eye contact 'just because'.


After being forced I could make eye contact for a short while and then one day I swung back the other way. I often do't even look at people when I talk to them, instead turning my head and looking next to them. I can look at people's foreheads like Jakki and with good friends occasional eye contact is possible and not too much of a chore. I agree though, eye contact feels too intimate...



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23 Oct 2019, 7:54 am

Trogluddite wrote:
Lying in bed at night unable to sleep, reviewing which bits of the conversation might have gone badly in ways that I didn't realise at the time, why they might have gone wrong and how disastrous the consequences might be, and why I'm an idiot for not saying the thing that has now become incredibly clear would have been a much better thing to say... oh hang on; actually maybe it wouldn't have been such a good thing to say, because it was a bit like that other conversation I had 30 years ago that I think I might have managed to understand how it all went so wrong; the one with the person I only met once ever for about five seconds which...; oh hang on a moment; now that I think of it, I've realised that there's a whole different angle that I never looked at that one from before which..., dammit!, I based my analysis of dozens of other conversations on that example, too, so now I'll have to revisit those as well, and... ... ...

Oh, but then again, maybe scripting the conversations that I think I might be possibly maybe going have at some indeterminate point in the future with someone who I'm not sure who it will be yet is worse. Hmm, it's so hard to decide. :?

Am often considering what i have told later on to fully digest ,,what had been said to make sure i did not misinterpet. .. especially in the late evening.

Even thinking if what i said could have been said better. Kinda used to it .


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23 Oct 2019, 11:00 am

1) What I find most stressful (hence tiring for that reason):

- Dealing with authority figures, of whatever kind, who don't yet know me, but who I need to make a good impression on in order to get something I need.
- Informal, unstructured conversations involving two or more other people besides me. (I'm better in either (1) one-on-one conversation or (2) highly-focused, structured discussions.)
- New, unfamiliar social settings of whatever kind.
- Anything that involves dressing up.

2) Not necessarily stressful, but otherwise extremely tiring:

- Anything that involves travel, other than just walking around my neighborhood.

3) Things I've long since banished from my life because I had found them to be off-the-charts stressful/tiring:

- Attempting to pass for "normal," e.g. attempting to imitate NT eye contact rhythms. (Instead, I've always tried to arrange my life so that, as much as possible, I'm around people who are relatively accepting of human variety. Living in a highly multicultural neighborhood helps.)
- Ritualized gift exchange. (Since age 20 or so, I've told everyone in my life that I want neither to give nor to receive gifts for holidays, birthdays, etc.)

4) New sources of stress, now that I have the goal of helping to build the autistic community:

- Getting to know enough people in the local autistic adult support groups well enough to make some real friends there. (This is taking longer than expected. Hopefully my forthcoming website will make it easier for other autistic adults around here to find friends.)
- Navigating the politics of the "autism community" (parents and professionals).


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23 Oct 2019, 11:44 am

I'm really not great with social interaction, so it makes me exhausted many times but the most severe cases are talking to people, engaging in a conversation, making eye contact (really severe), asking for help and overall talking. I struggle with these greatly especially when I am talking to friends and family members, since I am sometimes unable to give a correct response and it just feels awkward, and I still cannot give direct eye contact since it's really distressing for me.

It doesn't help that this has happened sometimes when I am working in the charity shop, and customers have sometimes asked me for help and it really confuses me most times, leaving me to apologise and get the other staff for help instead, since while I like working there, social interaction with customers is not a strong point. It has also happened in therapy/counselling and various times in school/college when the staff engages in talks with me, really too tough and has never really gone well without help.

It's not a great part of me and I don't think it will ever get better for me, hoping it does but who knows.....



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23 Oct 2019, 2:26 pm

Having to pretend to be interested in what the other person is interested in.


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