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RiRi

Dislike Being Watched

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No Longer Here

I had an incident yesterday.  I went in a shop and there were three women talking in one of the aisles. One of the women immediately stopped what she was doing and started staring at me. I felt that she was attracted to me. 

Everywhere I walked her eyes followed me. Everything I looked up she was staring straight at me.

I was really uncomfortable with her attention so I had to walk away.

Even at the tills she was at the next till and still staring. 

I couldn't get out of there fast enough! 

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Nesf

@Alice @Makelets I don't like having my picture taken either, and I especially don't like someone videoing me. I agree with what Alice says about not feeling the need to take photos and rarely take them, and when I do, I do it in an artistic way and not a social way - I like the way the light is falling on a landscape or building, or I like to view something at an usual angle, or I saw something unusual like a triple rainbow. I rarely take pictures of people.

@Alice I'm not tolerant at all of this social touching, and I don't know why people do it. I mean, I know that people might think that it is nice, but I don't know why this is supposed to be nice. I'm not comfortable with strangers touching me, and I never do this social touching on others. If someone does this, I move away or ask them not to touch. Since my diagnosis I have become more open about the things that make me uncomfortable and now I let them know.

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Aspergolfer
On 3/19/2016 at 3:11 AM, takingabreak said:

I find it extremely uncomfortable and difficult to deal with. If someone is watching me performing some task that I am normally good and competent at, I suddenly find I become far less competent at it than I normally am.

Tell me about it!  I can be playing the round of my life, and then Chris shows up to watch me play, if I know he's there, I'm  duffing everything. 

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Heather

I feel very self-conscious when out in public, especially with the phone thing. I get nervous someone will be able to read over my shoulder and see what I am doing.  I think it depends on the day and how I feel about myself. If I am wearing clothing that I don't normally wear or have done my hair differently I am more aware of other people possibly looking at me funny. Ohhhh and the big one for me is listening to music in public, I always would use headphones but always have to take them out of my ear when the sound is playing to ensure no one would be able to hear the music.  And even if I know my music won't be loud enough to be heard outside the headphones, I get self-conscious if other people look at me in case it's because the music is on, this is biggest when I have listened to music on the bus.  But usually, people are not paying too much attention to me so I can relax a little after awhile.  I get nervous when I am waiting for someone to meet me somewhere because then I feel that people might wonder what's wrong or why I am just standing around.

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Sanctuary

This is a problem many people have and it's often related to lack of self-confidence or perception of a "threat" (in the broadest sense). We tend not to worry so much about being watched if we are confident and think people like what we are doing but being watched when we fear some negative judgement is very hard. Sometimes the watcher doesn't have to say anything negative - the anxiety is still there if we think they have a negative impression. Sometimes these fears are misplaced. I think people of all kinds can have these fears but individuals with AS maybe much more so because they are more used to be judged negatively. Of course we can also feel uncomfortable if we feel the person watching us has no good reason to do so.

I am certainly very self-conscious and dislike being watched. I hate being photographed and I think I can safely say there are very few photographs of me in existence. There is a part of me which feels it's better to have a more private existence and not document so much of our lives but that seems at odds with a lot of cultural trends and younger people in particular are very used to growing up in a selfie and self-disclosure culture. I wouldn't criticise anyone for doing that if that makes them happy but it's not for me and I think many others with AS feel the same. 

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Miss Chief

Well it definitely is not a confidence or self conscious thing for me... it is literally irritating as I am aware of the fact someone is looking at me (even if they are behind me) it's like an itch I can't scratch and it distracts me from what I am trying to do (this only happens if it is an intent stare rather than someone glancing at me or for example someone daydreaming and staring of into space but in my direction, neither of the latter effect me at all). My partner will sometimes stare at me to annoy me (he seems to think it amusing, it even wakes me up if I am sleeping), this makes me very annoyed. However, I really couldn't give a rats arse about what other people think about me :P 

Edited by Miss Chief

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RiRi

I dislike being watched and being heard. I can relate to @Sanctuary maybe it is due to low-self esteem and being scared of people making negative judgments. Since that is what it's been like most of my life, people criticizing.

But, I don't know, I think part of it, for me, is related to just wanting privacy and not wanting others to know what I'm doing. Yeah, that's probably the biggest cause of my dislike of people hearing me/watching me. I feel exposed when this happens and it makes me feel very uncomfortable and anxious.

I'm not sure if wanting some privacy is related to low self-esteem. it might be. I know I have low self-esteem. 

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lifeis

I also dislike being watched especially if I'm at home. I like my privacy and all my life people have seemed obsessed with invading it. I know NT's are hard wired to be nosey but if people want to know something about me then they can ask, not dig into my private life without my permission.

 

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Sanctuary

Whenever we're being watched - even if it's doing something routine or something we're good at - we have an "audience" and that become wearying and even disconcerting. Anytime we are watched there is the potential for us to feel we have to change what we do to accommodate this audience, either by "putting on a good show" or interacting with them in some other way. We do all need space and an opportunity not to feel self-conscious and just get on with doing things. Privacy gives us this space. 

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RiRi

One of the reasons why I hate going out is because I hate the staring thing. Like being out and about and putting myself out there to be seen. I don't like being seen. I don't like the possibility of others seeing me. It makes me feel uncomfortable and I feel like I'm exposed, like in a play and everyone could be watching. I don't like people looking at me, not even if it's because they're nosy or because they just want to see. The uncomfortable feeling of being seen even applies to my family, like when there's little space and I'm the only one standing or the only one doing something, like serving myself food, washing dishes, and people are watching my every move. I hate that. I'm sort of okay when someone whom I know for sure won't misjudge or judge stare at me. There are very few people whom I'm okay if they watch, but it's usually really nice people whom I know won't judge me. I don't know where this judge thing stems from, I can only try to guess that it's because I lacked privacy in my life growing up, but I really don't know.

Of course, if I'm able to keep myself together, people won't be able to notice that I'm uncomfortable being watched (at least I hope that when I do try, they don't notice). It's just an internal battle I have. But, sometimes I act more weird as a coping mechanism, like I mentioned earlier, eating like a pig (in hopes that it's not a nice sight) sometimes I just act silly. Sometimes I just roll my eyes and look even more mad than I probably look. I have the bitchy resting face.

Sorry if this post sounds weird, it used to be part of another topic. 

I'm glad others also struggle with this, not because it's a nice thing, but it helps me feel better that I'm not alone in this.

Edited by Makelets

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