Aspie Trait #4 – We Just Don’t Understand Body Language.

Banner Aspie  Understanding body language, things like facial expressions and tone of voice are important for social interactions. But many of us Aspies are just not very good at those type things.  To us, it is a strange and mysterious thing so we often tend to misinterpret what is actually being communicated.

canstockphoto29475952.jpgWithout recognizing these things our response to some conversations seems inappropriate. We generally take many things literally and based on the facts in front of us instead of as they may be intended.

Of course, I have a more difficult time of tone of language than most Aspies since I don’t hear any tone. Being deaf makes that impossible and that is compounded when I am reading sign language as my primary input. While signing most often gets the basic point across, it just doesn’t help with nuances at all.  One sign can often mean many different things and it is up to each of us to discern which meaning is the most appropriate for a given thought.  That alone makes for some confusing dialogs.  Put together it makes some social interactions almost impossible.

 

 

Aspie Trait #3 – We Are Good Writers But Not Good Speakers..

Banner Aspie  This week’s Aspie trait is one that is powerful for me. I have always been a good writer. In high school and college, I almost effortlessly got A’s in all my composition classes. Writing just came easily for me. If I add up all the posts I have written in the last ten years on the various blogs I have started, the number likely exceeds 10,000 posts.  I discovered I have hyperlexia which means that my comprehension for reading, writing and typing far exceeds my verbal comprehension.

Public speaking is just difficult for me along with many other types of social interactions. Although I have managed to do a significant amount of public speaking, I am not very good at it. I am always approaching a panic mode, especially on topics I am not passionate about.

Getting back to writing, I am seldom satisfied with what I write the first time around. It never seems to have just the right words to adequately express what I want to say. I often go through several edits before I am satisfied with the words. That is just my nature that I have come to accept.

Aspie Trait #2 – We are honest to a fault

Banner Aspie   We Aspies are usually brutally honest and speak our mind. Our allegiance is to the truth, not people’s feelings. Most people learn not to tell the truth all the time. Sometimes white lies need to be said so as not to hurt friends’ feelings. But white lies just seem immoral or at least illogical to many of us Aspies.

Of course, being brutally honest is not the way to make friends at least at a casual level so many of us lack those kinds of friendship growing up. I realize that I sometimes hurt people’s feeling here on RJsCorner by what I post. But usually, that is a secondary thought that only comes until after the post is written. Honesty to me is almost everything. I have come to realize that is one of the things that is making our current times, especially inside the Beltway Loony Bin almost intolerable to me. I just can’t fathom someone being celebrated for telling “alternative facts” that they know are untruthful.

One of those areas where being honest is lacking is in today’s religious establishments. I was asked to leave a Missouri Lutheran congregation because I openly said that I couldn’t accept that the earth is only 6,000 years old just because an old Jewish document written by hundreds, if not thousands of different people dated it with their counting the generations after the Adam and Eve story. That got me in trouble, but perhaps even more so that I just couldn’t make any sense of how current Christian practices changed so drastically from the words of their founder. It makes absolutely no sense to me.

Being honest is considered an asset by most in our society, but not in every circumstance. That is the part we Aspies can’t understand…

 

Aspie Trait #1: We Don’t All Have The Same Traits Or Severity

Banner Aspie

I thought as part of the RJsCorner rework I would add a weekly snippet about Asperger’s Traits.  I want to emphasize here that I am not an “expert” on this condition but I have apparently lived with it most of my life and I have also done quite a bit of study on the topic over the last few months. Since everyone seems to like numbered lists that will be the format these posts will take. The numbers are only the order of presentation and have nothing to do with priority. Let’s get started.

It hasn’t always been so but Asperger’s is now considered part of the Autism spectrum. I know that those in the professional community like to call Aspie traits as symptoms but I chose not to do that as the word “symptom” is just too negative for me. It indicates a sickness rather than a variation in human characteristics.  Aspie traits can generally be labeled either an asset for a liability. I am proud of some of the things I am able to do as a result of being an Aspie but there are other things that seriously get in the way of social interaction.

Aspie Trait #1- We are not all alike. There are dozens of human traits that have been labeled a part of the Aspie Syndrome. I will be covering many of them in this series.  No Aspie has all of them. It is also important to know that Aspies don’t have the same degree of any of the traits. Some are debilitated by a trait while others are simply inconvenienced by that same trait. Some have only a few traits while others have more. The Aspie spectrum is broad indeed. 🙂

I can remember my first encounter with the concept of Aspergers. It was a TV show where the character was constantly cursing and had uncontrollable actions. Of course, that is in no way realistic for the vast majority of us Aspies. Many lead pretty “normal” lives but are challenged by one trait or another. Some Aspie traits are assets which actually enhance the life of an Aspie and make them special people.  I like to concentrate on the assets but recognize the liabilities as a part of the syndrome as well.