Worst thing about malls: getting lost in department stores

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jread
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01 Nov 2007, 10:46 am

I don't know about others on here but I have a very poor sense of direction and get lost very easily. For instance, I've been in my building at work for years now and cannot figure out how all the doors connect each area of cubicles. I just know a single way to get to places I need to go and I use those routes every time.

Anyway, I think that the worst places I get lost are the department stores in large shopping malls. I can literally get lost for hours in these places. Asking for directions usually doesn't help, as I don't really want to talk to anyone and even if they tell me how to get out, I still might not find the way. It really does cause me a great deal of anxiety and frustration because I have so much trouble with it. The other bad thing is that if I ever do find an exit out of the store, it comes out in a different area of the mall (or even outside the mall) and then I have no idea where I am or how to get back.

Is this aspie-related? Am I just stupid? lol



MelancholyBunny
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01 Nov 2007, 11:23 am

I think it has something to do with liking routines and the familiar, at school I would always walk the same way to class even if there were quicker ways.

I also have a bad sense of direction and can only go places on my own if I have been there a couple of times previously. The ironic thing is that I have no difficulty reading maps, as long as they are the right way up, yet get lost on my way home.

I can't stand department stores, you think your local supermarket is bad, then you get to one of these labyrinths. I am frequently lost, and there is nothing more anxiety inducing than being trapped.



caramateo
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01 Nov 2007, 11:45 am

I don't like malls either, they give me anxiety.
all the noise and lights and advertising distract me, then I forget how I got there and I get lost.

malls were created and designed like labyrinths so you have a chance to see it all, and hopefully stay there for long hours shopping and even eat there.
we as aspies don't tolerate feeling trapped we don't like that I guess Is because of anxiety.

This is another example of how this modern society is causing more and more health problems.
Don't go to malls, don't shop there.
one day the business people that control these enterprises will get it



kclark
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01 Nov 2007, 11:49 am

I am exactly the same way. I get turned around and lost just about everywhere I go. I have to park in the same area at school or a store or spend 10 minutes walking up and down each aisle to find my car. I give myself an extra 30 minutes at least when I drive somewhere new and that is if I basically know the area and have a mapquest map leading me there.

When I was little I used to bike around the block in my small subdivision (basically one block with a couple little loops attached) in a counter clockwise direction, and it took me years of delivering the free ad paper to realize how those loops actually worked if you rode in the other direction. I just never understood how the roads really connected despite having a map of my route.



serenity
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01 Nov 2007, 11:51 am

You're not the only one. I made a thread about it a few months ago. I was very relieved to find out that I wasn't alone!
http://www.wrongplanet.net/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=39082&highlight=



jread
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01 Nov 2007, 12:11 pm

serenity wrote:
You're not the only one. I made a thread about it a few months ago. I was very relieved to find out that I wasn't alone!
http://www.wrongplanet.net/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=39082&highlight=


Topographic Agnosia... very interesting.

The funny part about this is that I work in the Geographic Information Systems field, which is all about maps and spatial data. I have absolutely no trouble at all reading a map and seeing how everything fits together in a two-dimensional context. If I'm on the ground, with stores, trees, cars, and other distractions, though, I it's like the "map" is blocked out of my mind and I cannot navigate at all. I can't even look out of a window and estimate how many miles away something is.



Ben_Cardwell
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01 Nov 2007, 12:25 pm

My theory is that department stores are designed to get you lost. The more lost you are, the longer you spend in the store. The longer you spend in the store, the more things you see. The more things you see, the more things you buy. It's a conspiricy!



Sorce
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01 Nov 2007, 12:33 pm

I like malls, but I hate departments stores. I only go to one for bras. A couple weeks ago there was construction going on in Sears, and they closed off one of the exits. I walked around for about 40-45 minutes almost on the verge of tears because I couldn't get out. To make matters worse I stop talking when I'm upset, so I didn't ask anyone for help.

serenity wrote:
You're not the only one. I made a thread about it a few months ago. I was very relieved to find out that I wasn't alone!
http://www.wrongplanet.net/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=39082&highlight=


Thanks for the link because I had no idea it had an actual name.



Liverbird
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01 Nov 2007, 12:58 pm

I am so directionally challenged it is pathetic. I go the same way to places all the time because otherwise, I'd never be able to get home. I get so anxiety ridden when those stupid yahoo maps aren't right. I use my husband as my GPS a lot of times because I'm so clueless. I call him....how do you get to (xplace) from (xplace2)?

I tend to have lots of maps in my head, but get them mixed up sometimes and then get lost. Very distressing.


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jjstar
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01 Nov 2007, 1:46 pm

I lost my parked car a few times, then I got the idea of putting streamers on my antenna. It worked, until the streamers blew off. Arghhhhh. I will never forget the helplessness of trying to remember where I parked, and the endless sea of cars. It didn't help that my car was inconspicously dark blue either...... :cry:


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howzat
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01 Nov 2007, 3:08 pm

2 b honest i enjoy goin 2 malls n department stores as i like 2 explore every angle n every fraction da only tym i don't like it is wen its crowded but apart 4rm dat i go 2 malls quite often its da supermarket i hate most.



woodsman25
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01 Nov 2007, 5:24 pm

hehe, ya, i am good with maps, but do also get lost, whether it be on the road or in a large store, i have a path i follow whenever I go into one of my very few stores i am farmilair with and I stick to it, i avoid malls and whenever I have verbal directions i transsition those verbal directions onto a map with a pen and follow the line I drew as opposed to the directions.

Indeed, sounds like it is ASD related.


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Mirel
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01 Nov 2007, 5:45 pm

I thank my innate sense of direction every day - its saved my ass many'a'time.



crazyllama
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01 Nov 2007, 5:46 pm

I work in a mall and it is absolute torture. The noise is what really kills me. I feel like a dog stuck in a kennel.



Sapphix
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01 Nov 2007, 5:52 pm

jread wrote:
Topographic Agnosia... very interesting.


Great - another interesting name to add to my collection and throw at people when they laugh at my sense of direction.