How to approach aspies who haven't heard of aspergers

Page 1 of 2 [ 23 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

alex
Developer
Developer

User avatar

Joined: 13 Jun 2004
Age: 33
Gender: Male
Posts: 10,111
Location: Beverly Hills, CA

14 Nov 2007, 6:38 pm

There's a girl in my Chinese Cinema class. I know she has Asperger's but I have a feeling she doesn't even know she has it or what it is. Although I think she knows she's different and she may be able tell I'm also different in a similar way. A friend of mine who happens to be acquainted with her agrees that she is most likely an aspie (he's also a member of WP and an aspie himself). I don't know how I should even begin, however. Any ideas? been in a similar situation yourself?


_________________
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/alexplank

Personal FB: http://fb.me/alexplank1


mmaestro
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 6 Aug 2007
Age: 41
Gender: Male
Posts: 522
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA

14 Nov 2007, 6:43 pm

I think I'd have to consider myself a friend to broach the subject with someone. I think it's too sensitive a subject to bring up with someone who I'm not well aquainted with, but I may be thinking in NT terms too much, there. I'd ask your friend for his opinion. If he knows her better, he may have a better feel for how best to suggest it, or even if that's appropriate.


_________________
"You're never more alone than when you're alone in a crowd"
-Captain Sheridan, Babylon 5

Music of the Moment: Radiohead - In Rainbows


alex
Developer
Developer

User avatar

Joined: 13 Jun 2004
Age: 33
Gender: Male
Posts: 10,111
Location: Beverly Hills, CA

14 Nov 2007, 6:46 pm

mmaestro wrote:
I think I'd have to consider myself a friend to broach the subject with someone. I think it's too sensitive a subject to bring up with someone who I'm not well aquainted with, but I may be thinking in NT terms too much, there. I'd ask your friend for his opinion. If he knows her better, he may have a better feel for how best to suggest it, or even if that's appropriate.


true but perhaps there's a way to do it without implying she has it.


_________________
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/alexplank

Personal FB: http://fb.me/alexplank1


ev8
Deinonychus
Deinonychus

User avatar

Joined: 28 Aug 2007
Age: 31
Gender: Male
Posts: 324

14 Nov 2007, 6:59 pm

Get the friend (if he's willing, since he knows her better) to mention his own AS and this site, and maybe suggest she check it out to learn a little bit about it. Once she looks at a list of symptoms, the ball should get rolling.



mmaestro
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 6 Aug 2007
Age: 41
Gender: Male
Posts: 522
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA

14 Nov 2007, 7:00 pm

alex wrote:
true but perhaps there's a way to do it without implying she has it.

What happened with me is my stepmother is actually an autism specialist, and she sat me down and talked to me about some of the patients she was seeing, and the symptoms they had, and described the father of one of her patients who, when she described his son's symptoms to him (the father), he said, "you just described me." And I sat there, thinking, "and me, too."*
If your friend knows this girl, maybe there's a way he can talk about what he's going through, listing symptoms and so on and so forth?

*This was probably 2001 or 2002, and I only finally started investigating Asperger's a few months ago, after suspecting I have the syndrome for years. I finally mentioned my suspicions to her, and she had no memory of the conversation and wasn't sure that I am an aspie, although she said definitely on the spectrum, so maybe PDD-NOS. Still, it seems an odd conversation, delivered with a peculiar amount of gravity, and we never knew each other well and it's been years since I saw her, so she may just have forgotten.


_________________
"You're never more alone than when you're alone in a crowd"
-Captain Sheridan, Babylon 5

Music of the Moment: Radiohead - In Rainbows


Stevopedia
Velociraptor
Velociraptor

User avatar

Joined: 2 Nov 2007
Age: 28
Gender: Male
Posts: 425
Location: Tigertown, South Carolina, United States

14 Nov 2007, 7:10 pm

I've begun to discuss it with some of my friends at school. I don't remember how it came up, but somehow we got into an involved discussion about AS. During the course of the conversation, I came to suspect that a good friend of mine who wast part of the discussion had AS (I previously believed her to be an NT.) I doubt she's heard of AS before.

Long story short, see if you can't get her involved in a discussion about AS. If she doesn't piece it together herself, maybe then you could clue her in.

(As a side note, I attend a science and math specialty school, and it would probably be safe to say that at least half of the students and two of the teachers all have AS. In fact, my idea for my senior research project is to compare the occurrence of autism spectrum disorders in my school and similar ones against the general population.)



bobert
Deinonychus
Deinonychus

User avatar

Joined: 18 May 2007
Gender: Male
Posts: 333

14 Nov 2007, 7:27 pm

Maybe the subtlest method would be to strike up a conversation with her. You could casually mention that the you are the developer of WP, and suggest she check it out. If she does, she may realize that she is an aspie and take it from there. I'm not sure how receptive people are to being diagnosed by unfamiliar classmates.



IronicChef
Supporting Member
Supporting Member

User avatar

Joined: 6 Nov 2007
Gender: Male
Posts: 76
Location: Blame Canada!

14 Nov 2007, 7:52 pm

My ex-gf is most likely an Aspie - I'd say I was positive, but after dating for a year and a half we still didn't know each other that well, even with our nightly phone conversations running between two and four hours, and my cell-phone bill running $300-$400 a month -- How much more Aspie can you get than that? LOL!

At the time my knowledge of AS was still sketchy, but I knew that she exhibited the same symptoms as I did (and it was mostly our mutual oddness that had brought us together). However, when I gently made the suggestion to her that I thought there was some possibility that AS had something to do with me being who I am, and that maybe, just maybe, she might have a touch of it herself, the reaction I got was "absolutely not possible - there is nothing wrong with me and I'm perfectly happy with who I am".

I'm guessing that most "successful" Aspies, if they are completely unaware of the existence of the condition, and have worked hard to acclimate to NT society, would find the idea that they have a problem very difficult to take, and might well be quite offended that a relative stranger is apparently making an observation about their mental health.

On the other hand, if there was a simple and completely indirect/innocent way to get her to take a look at WP then that would probably be a good way to get her thinking about it --- though I'm at a loss to suggest an actual approach strategy even in this case. I'd be patient and look for an opening. At the very least, you have an opportunity to say something like "I run a website with 15,000 members - it's cool - check it out some time..." (or perhaps have your friend point you out and say something similar).

Then again, it's not like I'm any good at doing that sort of stuff, so don't trust anything I say... :)

Nick



i_Am_andaJoy
Supporting Member
Supporting Member

User avatar

Joined: 27 Sep 2007
Age: 40
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,268
Location: Ocala, FL

14 Nov 2007, 8:41 pm

when i found this site, i thought that my good friend from high school seemed pretty Aspie-ish, and i thought, hey! maybe THAT's why we became friends even though we were pretty different personalities.

so i just emailed him, "hey. ever heard of AS?"

and he said no, but then later emailed me and said he thought he might have it, and so then i sent him the link for that online aspie test and he scored Aspie.

I don't know if i would be brave enough to bring it up with a girl who was just an aquaintence, but i still would say blunt is the best way to go. people like to take tests about themselves, so i would maybe just suggest she go to that link.


_________________
www.asaspiepie.blogspot.com
Even in his lowest swoop, the mountain eagle is still higher than the other birds upon the plain, even though they soar. --Herman Melville


Twilight823
Hummingbird
Hummingbird

User avatar

Joined: 12 Mar 2007
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 23
Location: Detriot, Michigan

14 Nov 2007, 10:57 pm

This is a strange way, but it worked for me. My friend introduced me to one of her friends who is a very sweet girl (we'll call her rose). Well my friend gave rose my msn address, and she kept talking and talking and talking to me even though I wasn't very interested. Well after a while i gave in and started talking to her. She struck me as very aspie-ish. I still didn't know her very well so it would be odd if i just told her "I think you have Asperger's syndrome" So what I did was I gave her a bunch of quizzes like www.piratequiz.com, and www.thesuperheroquiz.com. We took the quizzes and compared our results for fun. I gave her the link to the AQ test and told her "Here's another one. My score was interesting I want to see what you get." She scored rather high, and researched asperger's. She told her parents the next day and now she's in the middle of being diagnosed.



AspieMartian
Velociraptor
Velociraptor

User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2007
Age: 48
Gender: Female
Posts: 434

14 Nov 2007, 11:53 pm

alex wrote:
There's a girl in my Chinese Cinema class. I know she has Asperger's but I have a feeling she doesn't even know she has it or what it is. Although I think she knows she's different and she may be able tell I'm also different in a similar way. A friend of mine who happens to be acquainted with her agrees that she is most likely an aspie (he's also a member of WP and an aspie himself). I don't know how I should even begin, however. Any ideas? been in a similar situation yourself?


I don't think the suspicion of someone having AS is a very good justification for approaching them with the pre-established agenda of telling them you think that. Try just being friends with her. Get to know her as a person, not as a "potential AS dx."

If in the process of becoming friends with her, you find she's interested in AS and expresses feeling she can relate to people with AS, that would be the point I would encourage her to look more deeply into what AS is. As you probably know, people with AS usually know there's something different about them, and when they find out about AS, it's like the puzzle pieces start falling into place. In other words, Aspies usually are the best "solvers" to their own mystery. You can't really convince somene that they have AS if they don't feel it fits them, nor should you try. All you can do is be an opportunity for her to learn about AS and tehn allow her to decide for herself.



wsmac
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 31 Aug 2007
Age: 59
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,904
Location: Humboldt County, Little Blue House on the Hill

15 Nov 2007, 2:31 am

First, I think it is sad we look at AS as something too terrible to suggest someone might have... like it is cancer.

Maybe because I work in the medical field, maybe because I am who I am... I just don't see the problem in telling someone they exhibit traits in line with AS. Why should AS be different than suggesting someone is near-sighted, or Dyslexic? It's because there's that stigma attached.
And as long as people keep attaching that stigma to AS, then it will always be a negative... except for those folks here who see it in a more positive light in their lives.

But... to answer Alex... can you talk to her about movies and how you have seen an interesting film like "The Red Carpet", which is German (if I am remembering it all correctly), but you wonder if the Chinese movie industry would ever make a film about something similar, considering how that particular society keeps to itself and out of the world's eye as much as possible?

Basically, find some reference to AS that can be segued into a discussion about film... or Chinese culture.
Perhaps in the midst of this conversation, you can mention that you have AS like the guy in Red Carpet.
Then ask her if she's noticed you were a bit different than some of the other students around you all.
Follow that up by asking if she knows anyone with AS or if she even knows what AS is.
If she doesn't, then you could go on to explain the traits of someone with AS.
You could even point out that there are some things she does that a person might consider a bit Aspy. Let her make the connections and come back to you that perhaps she does have AS traits or even AS itself.

It may not work out just like the above scenario, but you could come up with something like this that might work.
Practice with your girlfriend to see how comfortable it feels and natural.


_________________
fides solus
===============
LIBRARIES... Hardware stores for the mind


Danielismyname
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 2 Apr 2007
Age: 38
Gender: Male
Posts: 9,599

15 Nov 2007, 2:52 am

alex wrote:
How to approach aspies who haven't heard of aspergers?


Don't. If the individual in question isn't experiencing difficulty in the big three (social, vocational and academia), what's the point?

How can you be sure she has it? I doubt many people would like you to mention to them that they're possibly retarded socially, especially those who aren't. People with AS have trouble reading others to begin with, so you and your friend may easily be in error.



wsmac
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 31 Aug 2007
Age: 59
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,904
Location: Humboldt County, Little Blue House on the Hill

15 Nov 2007, 3:08 am

Danielismyname wrote:
alex wrote:
How to approach aspies who haven't heard of aspergers?


Don't. If the individual in question isn't experiencing difficulty in the big three (social, vocational and academia), what's the point?

How can you be sure she has it? I doubt many people would like you to mention to them that they're possibly retarded socially, especially those who aren't. People with AS have trouble reading others to begin with, so you and your friend may easily be in error.


Here's a prime example... "retarded socially".

Where in the hell do you get the idea that someone with AS is retarded socially?

Do realize that people socialize differently and we need to quit labeling folks with AS as being retarded socially?

Please give me a precise definition of NOT being retarded socially!

Who is the authority on what actions are the correct ones and which ones are the incorrect ones?

I know I'm just beating my head against a wall with this one, but it's not the people with AS who are the problem... get it!?
It's the idea that we cannot condone a broader definition of what is acceptable behavior in our societies.

If we can ever get past the idea that not looking someone directly in the eyes is OKAY! then guess what? Americans, Brits, and others just might be able to get along with the rest of the world as well because I know for a fact that there are other societies that DO NOT promote staring someone in eyes as appropriate behavior.

Anyway, sorry about hijacking the thread. I personally think we've taken the concept of "Rudeness" too far so that we cannot communicate with each other very well in this world.. geez! :roll:


_________________
fides solus
===============
LIBRARIES... Hardware stores for the mind


Danielismyname
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 2 Apr 2007
Age: 38
Gender: Male
Posts: 9,599

15 Nov 2007, 3:19 am

wsmac wrote:
Where in the hell do you get the idea that someone with AS is retarded socially?


Quote:
Severe impairment in reciprocal social interaction


There you go. That's just from one of the diagnostic tools; all others say the same thing.

AS by its very definition is social retardation primarily, along with some narrow/focused interests; AD is similar, but there's a broader delay in cognitive function.

Hey, if you think you aren't impaired socially, why even bother with calling yourself AS?

O yeah, I'm retarded socially.