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TheTheatreCat

My experiences with friends (and ex-friends)

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TheTheatreCat

Hey,

I have not formally been diagnosed with Aspergers or any other condition as of yet, but I do highly suspect that I might have Aspergers.

 

In school, I found it really hard at first to find friends (apart from the teachers, who I was really friendly with) - I didn't really know who to look for. And then, when I did find myself friends, it was only a few. These few stayed with me for years, but that was OK. I don't really know why people didn't like me, but I have a feeling it's because I'm "different". I think most people who know me know this - even the teachers.

 

I'm not "cool" and therefore am not invited to parties or anything, but we had a talk by one of our teachers once where he explained the dangers of teen parties. However, my thoughts came out aloud, as I said a very loud "oh", which most people heard. The teacher then responded by saying "don't worry, (name - and if you're wondering, my username is a false one), I doubt you'll ever be invited to a party". And so my friend number dropped again. Even the teachers were against me!

 

This topic was prompted to me again recently when one of my friends started to act funny. I'd noticed he'd started hanging out with one of the "cool" groups, and so denied any claim of being my friend, so as to look "cool". I just don't understand why I'm such widely hated!

 

Finally, I would add that one of the reasons I think I may have Aspergers is because one of my close friends has some condition (which I suspect is Aspergers), and we are almost clones, in our personality and brain (if that makes sense). If I am acting exactly like someone with Aspergers, I thought, does this mean that I could actually have Aspergers myself?

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Little Guy
On 1/1/2017 at 5:56 PM, BenedictRattray said:

f I am acting exactly like someone with Asperger's, I thought, does this mean that I could actually have Asperger's myself?

Possibly but start with a little research about the condition:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asperger_syndrome

A key thought is that it is a "spectrum" condition in that there are many variations while still sharing commonalities.
You can find a number of self-diagnosis tests. Often the questions themselves will help you understand things about yourself. Here is one: http://aspergerstest.net/aq-test/

Friendship, especially at school, for people on the spectrum can be difficult at best. Your problems are compounded by entirely unprofessional teachers who say

On 1/1/2017 at 5:56 PM, BenedictRattray said:

I doubt you'll ever be invited to a party.

There are many layers to friendship difficulties:

  1. People with AS have trouble multi-processing and can struggle to "keep up" with rapid, multi-person conversations.
  2. Some people with AS have speech markers such as talking slowly making young, stupid kids (yes they still make me angry) think you are slow when in fact you are probably far brighter.
  3. People with AS often become hyper-focused on issues making others step back wondering what's the big deal.
  4. Often kids spend more time trying to look or sound cool than anything else -- most of the "cool" effort is merely trying to conform their behaviour to the group. AS people have a terrible time interpreting social cues, so even when they want to conform, they just don't get it.
  5. etc

So at the end of the day, people with AS will always have problems fitting in with the "cool" people. Me, I just find the "uncool" people who by the way are hard to find. People with AS tend to be very, very smart and this really makes "cool" kids uncomfortable. In fact the only time they might act friendly is when they want help with their homework.

Bottom-line, there is nothing wrong with you because you can't fit in. You just didn't get the "social" gene so best bet, learn all you can about yourself and AS, and then focus on doing really well in school as a ticket to a good future. Along the way you will be find some really fine people both AS as well as NT. By best, I mean people who care about others, have a high empathy quotient and also have something good and positive to contribute to the world.:D

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Dr-David-Banner

I will reboot this as it ties in with recent and strange developments. I liked this too:
"Losing friends out of nowhere can be a depressing thing, especially when we often aren't aware as to what causes us or other people to drift away."
It interested me the poster said "us". What I noticed is the following cycle:
Autistic person experiences years of exclusion and being ignored. The person makes every effort to be more popular but some psychologists think often feelings of being liked are misperception at times. People with AS are unable to read reciprocated emotion. In my case, I recently found I am now the one closing doors in friendships and burning bridges.
The thing that strikes me personally are the very subtle ways of being excluded by "the group". Some days ago some of the women were chatting and one of the girls started to offer out doughnuts. She asked every person in turn and nobody wanted them. She then turned to me and said, "They're yours if you want them." I didn't bother. Not only that but after a number of fairly low-key social rejections, I suddenly walked away from it all. I figured I'd rather be with my dog or read a book than be some third rate hanger-on. Not that I claim to be easy to relate to or blameless. And there's no ill-feeling. It's just the little things like being offered a 6 times rejected doughnut tended to sting somehow.
In conclusion. Clearly NT's very carefully follow the very subtle social survival skills they learned over the years. It's fascinating how they react when someone deviates from that script. Also I found it odd why I now react so strongly to very small instances of exclusion.

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Nesf
6 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Some days ago some of the women were chatting and one of the girls started to offer out doughnuts. She asked every person in turn and nobody wanted them. She then turned to me and said, "They're yours if you want them."

I wonder, if you were the first person to have been offered the doughnuts and you took one, whether they all would have taken a doughnut?

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Dr-David-Banner

It would make a unique log-in. "The 6 times rejected doughnut hanger-on". A bit like the psychedelic band names of Crotched Doughnut Ring and Amazing Happy Apple.
It built up over time and started to make me depressed. I think exclusion from the technical website I was on was a catalyst and then the subtle doughnut stuff just added to it. Actually having just stepped back and cut the limited social interaction I had has made me feel better. Funny thing is I love my dog and when he once leaped in the air and nearly grabbed my fish and chips, I just laughed.
I wonder if the site could change my log-in to "The Six Times Rejected Doughnut Hanger-On."

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Nesf
13 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

The thing that strikes me personally are the very subtle ways of being excluded by "the group". Some days ago some of the women were chatting and one of the girls started to offer out doughnuts. She asked every person in turn and nobody wanted them. She then turned to me and said, "They're yours if you want them." I

Actually I don't think I've understood this, and I apologise if I haven't - but I don't understand why you interpreted this as being a rejection? I mean, they did ask you if you wanted a doughnut so you were included, they didn't ignore you. If they had thought you weren't part of the group, they wouldn't have offered you one at all.

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Gone home

I think we find what we seek .... or to quote an idiom 'be careful what you wish for'.
I can understand you feeling disappointed at being the last in the donut line but you were not 'one of the girls' so to speak.

Look at it this way, the girls were each offered one ... you were offered six? ... you are the donut rejector :)
 

Donut despair :D

Edited by Going home
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Dr-David-Banner

" but you were not 'one of the girls' so to speak."
One of them has always been mischievous. She adds an "a" to my Christian name but barely audible. In the past she's teased I act like a "girl". None of that ever offended me. I even enjoy a bit of teasing. Yet the doughnut thing was symptomatic of one way traffic. It was six doughnuts because the choice was between six people. It went right down the line till the choices narrowed down to me and the bin!!! In the end the bin won out as I was annoyed after fixing their locks, getting their chips, removing their spiders (without hurting said spider) and noticing their hair styles - I was neck to neck with the bin for the offer of out of date doughnuts.

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DavidTheWitch

IT gets better down the line. Nerdier people get more girls down the line and more socialization. Your just in that awkward teen phase where everything rebellious and dumb is cool. In a few years after you hit collage you'll get girls or whatever you like. You'll succeed and possibly become successful. You just to know that childhood is an illusion!

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Dr-David-Banner

Yesterday the air got cleared but it was quite funny. I was talking to the girl who offered me the doughnuts last, a few weeks ago. Suddenly, she shoved a bag of sweets towards me and said, "Do you want a sweet?"
I replied, "Wow! That's a turn for the better. I'm pleasantly surprised."
She glared at me, pulled the sweets away and said, "Right! You're not getting one now. Forget it."
I then aired my thoughts expressed a post or two above that I was always ignored when stuff was handed out. She then snapped: "I offered you some doughnuts the other week and you turned them down!"
I replied: "But you offered me the doughnuts after nobody else wanted them. It was down to me or the bin!"
She replied: "But you're not part of the work team and it's girls first. And I'm not offering you another sweet!"
Still, I guess the air did get cleared. And I still think she should have offered everyone a doughnut each instead of going in turns.
Funnily enough, I just remembered I have a pack of doughnuts I got today. I am going to eat a couple now!

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Nesf
6 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Yesterday the air got cleared but it was quite funny. I was talking to the girl who offered me the doughnuts last, a few weeks ago. Suddenly, she shoved a bag of sweets towards me and said, "Do you want a sweet?"
I replied, "Wow! That's a turn for the better. I'm pleasantly surprised."
She glared at me, pulled the sweets away and said, "Right! You're not getting one now. Forget it."
I then aired my thoughts expressed a post or two above that I was always ignored when stuff was handed out. She then snapped: "I offered you some doughnuts the other week and you turned them down!"
I replied: "But you offered me the doughnuts after nobody else wanted them. It was down to me or the bin!"
She replied: "But you're not part of the work team and it's girls first. And I'm not offering you another sweet!"
Still, I guess the air did get cleared. And I still think she should have offered everyone a doughnut each instead of going in turns.
Funnily enough, I just remembered I have a pack of doughnuts I got today. I am going to eat a couple now!

Were there more people than doughnuts?

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Sanctuary
7 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Yesterday the air got cleared but it was quite funny. I was talking to the girl who offered me the doughnuts last, a few weeks ago. Suddenly, she shoved a bag of sweets towards me and said, "Do you want a sweet?"
I replied, "Wow! That's a turn for the better. I'm pleasantly surprised."
She glared at me, pulled the sweets away and said, "Right! You're not getting one now. Forget it."
I then aired my thoughts expressed a post or two above that I was always ignored when stuff was handed out. She then snapped: "I offered you some doughnuts the other week and you turned them down!"
I replied: "But you offered me the doughnuts after nobody else wanted them. It was down to me or the bin!"
She replied: "But you're not part of the work team and it's girls first. And I'm not offering you another sweet!"
Still, I guess the air did get cleared. And I still think she should have offered everyone a doughnut each instead of going in turns.
Funnily enough, I just remembered I have a pack of doughnuts I got today. I am going to eat a couple now!

Clearly there have been issues in your previous contacts but I feel that when someone offers something it's best to accept or offer a polite "no thanks" if it's not what you need. A blunt refusal or a comment questioning their motives or previous behaviour runs the risk of causing offence. Sometimes we read too much into the actions and try to second-guess their motivations. Sometimes we are right, e.g. that a gift is actually patronising, but it's often wisest not to make assumptions and take their apparent generosity at face value.

I know what you mean about sometimes feeling you are being left out or treated as less important than others, However in the doughnut case you outlined I can see why she offered them first to her co-workers. If it had been done differently one of them would have been last and perhaps felt as you did - someone will always be "last" in these cases. This shows the problem that afflicts those with AS where a routine event becomes invested with so much meaning and all kinds of motives are read into it. I do the same but my response is usually to not vocalise my thoughts and I feel that is generally the best option.  

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Dr-David-Banner

"someone will always be "last" in these cases."
For me the problem is I'm always last and in too many cases. So now I developed a degree of narcissism, coupled to hypersensitivity and also the "bottled up anger" Asperger himself desribed. I know it all sounds dramatic but as I thought it all over, I came to see it boils down to this: I want to be treated as "normal". Same as Nesf described she experienced, I get ignored a lot to the point it's rude. I also get sidelined in scores of cases where there was some opportunity arising. Now, I will admit there may well be various reasons to explain some of this. For example, I'm kind of effeminate and that gets noticed, plus I'm clumsy and monotone. However, the bottom line is I've a need to be treated as normal in order to feel more secure, but deep down I know this simply cannot be. Ultimately I'm not even close to normal. And it gets noticed a lot. Thus, I winded up overcompensating and veering towards narcissism, proving to myself how I can often outperform NT's. I often act sort of "know-all" which is really just my way to enforce self-belief and confidence. Given in the past I used to listen to negative commments from family and so on, I took a u-turn and maybe even do what Muhammad Ali used to do. As I recall, he used to say, "if you ain't the best, pretend you are." I think he meant if you tell yourself all the time you can attain your goal, that's a big step forwards. Actually, you'd be surprised how much many of us get programmed by others to sell ourselves short. Every day women get mildly discriminated against and told "Girls can't use tools or fix stuff as they're girls and not cut out to do mens' work." Yet I met a girl who's learning to weld! In my case I just tend to react strongly to the slightest incident of being ignored or just treated differently. The way it's headiing I'm very close to cutting off most social contacts, becoming even more goal orientated and maybe not as nice a person as I ought to be. Even worse, the huge amount of work I put into my quests for wxcellence may well get up some peoples' noses. It could be the girls in the shop noticed much of this and figured it was hard going.

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