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Dr-David-Banner

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Dr-David-Banner

This is an amusing incident and curious too. I just got into a bit of a stand-off on an internet site. The debate was about safety ground circuits on cruising yachts. Someone had been advised by the majority group not to ground the electrics on a non steel vessel. I chipped in mainly for noble causes to advise AC grounding was a legal obligation and explained why. I was met by opposition. I've had worse encounters but, as usual, I found as the opposition increased, the more it grew. Then, very unexpectedly a stranger surfaces. He chances to be a professionally qualified marine electrical engineer and he backs me up. The opposition splutters a bit of defiance but the engineer is too good. He works to strict electrical standards and can quote all the regulations. The opposing parties slink off. There is a sense of licking of wounds and gloom. The weird bit is I find my interventions are never welcomed by the majority. Neurotypical engineers get status, flattery, rank and reputation. In my case it's like you burst in somwhere uninvited. Not that I want reputation or status. I just think I'm viewed as unwelcome and even disturbing the equilibrium. Some people on sites complained I seem dismissive and arrogant which may make sense as NT's often view AS people as rude.

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TheWizardofCalculus
1 hour ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

This is an amusing incident and curious too. I just got into a bit of a stand-off on an internet site. The debate was about safety ground circuits on cruising yachts. Someone had been advised by the majority group not to ground the electrics on a non steel vessel. I chipped in mainly for noble causes to advise AC grounding was a legal obligation and explained why. I was met by opposition. I've had worse encounters but, as usual, I found as the opposition increased, the more it grew. Then, very unexpectedly a stranger surfaces. He chances to be a professionally qualified marine electrical engineer and he backs me up. The opposition splutters a bit of defiance but the engineer is too good. He works to strict electrical standards and can quote all the regulations. The opposing parties slink off. There is a sense of licking of wounds and gloom. The weird bit is I find my interventions are never welcomed by the majority. Neurotypical engineers get status, flattery, rank and reputation. In my case it's like you burst in somwhere uninvited. Not that I want reputation or status. I just think I'm viewed as unwelcome and even disturbing the equilibrium. Some people on sites complained I seem dismissive and arrogant which may make sense as NT's often view AS people as rude.

I don't think that this is at all a weird experience.  People can often get that bizarre thought loop of confusing status with a fact, and right-or-wrong, if challenge that system, people can get very offended.  There were numerous times during my PhD that another student would ask a question, and I would sometimes respond before the professors could.  It was amusing, because the professors usually didn't mind, but the students would get very, very offended that I had the audacity to answer their question.  Essentially, "Who is this arrogant asshole who's a year or two younger than me in my program, answering my question!  Are they trying to show me up?"  No, I'm trying to answer your fucking question.

There's a reason I stopped going to group paper-discussion meetings.  It got better though when I rarely showed up as a high level student, because then there was no one "ahead" of me to get angry when I answered their questions.

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Kroge
8 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Some people on sites complained I seem dismissive and arrogant which may make sense as NT's often view AS people as rude.

That's partially because (on here at least) you don't really respond much to what people are saying and just stream with your own thoughts whether it's related to the flow of conversation or not. Maybe it's because of your communication style. I can guarantee you by 99.5% that the way you perceive that situation is not at all how everyone else involved perceived it.

It is lamentable that so many people think that every life issue can be boiled down to "autism vs neurotypical". Maybe life would open up for these people more if they opened up how they see life.

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Dr-David-Banner

Bear in mind "autism" in one sense is "selfism". With me the way I function is inwardly not outwardly. So everything is inwardly learned and not through the medium of classes and other people. I never stop thinking and analysing so sometimes I tend to slip into thought processing. My social interaction is very poor. Even worse, I detected disjointed, racing thought. This is where you switch rapidly from one focus to another. Even so, in the case I described there was an actual concrete question being discussed and I was able to factually outline the case for grounding. By good fortune, the qualified engineer stumbled upon the debate and finished the argument. They pretty much had to back down. He clearly knew a lot about marine regulations and norms. I just sense a kind of negative feedcack, though. In some ways it's flattering as I have a fad for the Serbian engineer Tesla. Everybody raved about Edison while Tesla was perceived as either mad or hugely eccentric. I also detect in Tesla's dialogue a touch of narcissism and then you had his OCD and sensitivity to daylight. Many believed he was mad.

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Dr-David-Banner

How do you propose to bridge the gap between severely inwards people and neurotypicals? One group is inward and withdrawn. The other group is social and outward. You outline the shortcomings of the former and you are correct. The autistic children Hans Asperger studied were all clumsy, awkward, misfits and angry or confused over their struggle to relate to the world. Of course, these were clinical cases. Many people on the spectrum struggle but can still work and partly interact. Some of us, though, are virtually unemployable, clumsy, very strange to the perceptions of others and angry due to being marginalised. I find it is just about possible for such people to open up a little and make friends but it is not easy. It took ages for my friends to finally accept I was deep down quite warm and kind hearted in my own way. And that did help defuse the bottled up anger. How you help people on the spectrum to deal with their lot is a really complex issue. I agree we struggle to see why it is we provoke a sense of social rejection but it's also a pity society seems to care very little about the situation. We are generally not valued, understood or accepted and many of us have low status employment or income.

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Kroge
1 hour ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Bear in mind "autism" in one sense is "selfism". With me the way I function is inwardly not outwardly. So everything is inwardly learned and not through the medium of classes and other people. I never stop thinking and analysing so sometimes I tend to slip into thought processing. My social interaction is very poor. Even worse, I detected disjointed, racing thought. This is where you switch rapidly from one focus to another.

You don't have to explain any of this to me; I know it through and through. Note that autism doesn't always mean this kind of inwardness. There's plenty of diagnosed autistic people who are just as shallow as this "neurotypical" grouping, if not moreso. Because autism is characterized by extremes you can actually have very, very shallow autistic individuals without a single original or complex thought in their heads. This is why the autistic vs neurotypical paradigm is, to me, an entirely fictional one, albeit one which many people seem to find very comforting because of the obvious "us and them" appeal. That's totally fine as a comforting mechanism. But this system fails when it comes to applying it to real life problems and will just send people in pointless circles.

How that gap is bridged is an individual journey. And that's a fancy way of saying I have no idea because I've failed to do so on spectacular levels. I have succeeded in being more and more inward and learning to cope and survive to a comfortable level by simply going after the things I know I want and avoiding the things I know I don't want, and this is a very simple system that works, but it takes much heavier introspection than it would first seem. I have cut myself off from anyone and everyone and this has its issues, but it has also made me frighteningly strong and granted me immense peace and stability. But not being part of any kind of unit is an immense glaring weakness for any organism, and I guess everyone has to find their own way of reconciling their issues with this reality. I'm not afraid of using my pool of anger if it helps me feel in control of my own well-being, even if that means displeasing other people and even upsetting them. It's not perfect but you do what you can with what you've got. I'd rather this than a loathsome "please be nice to me, I'm so delicate" position, which I've also lived and found so much worse. However I have noticed that many autistic people focus their anger towards very trivial items and it is glaringly obvious to everyone else just how silly it is. So I think choosing the right battles is very important to figure out. Feeling angry and hurt about something is so very different to forced to feel angry and hurt by something. Having valid feelings does not make someone right, not in the least. Otherwise everyone would be right about everything all the time, and that's just impossible.

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Dr-David-Banner

I will comment on your points a bit later. I'm currently working on my boat in between running to the toilet after some food I just bought as a snack. For now it's hard to say how I feel about the "us and them" scenario you refer to. I am afraid that my honest experience is, yes, tolerant and kind-hearted NT people do exist. However, when talking about the social experience generally it's a bitter scenario. I find the majority of people will try to run me down in various ways. Especially on the occasional times I use a tech forum, someone will emerge and tell me I'm wrong but condescendingly. These days I don't see the point in such arguments but I can and do defend my statements. A big part of that stems from a need to convey people on the spectrum are not inferior. I guess the other day was the first time someone appeared out of the blue and endorsed me. A good thing really because a seagoing yacht that's improperly grounded can lead to charges of criminal negligence should someone get electrocuted.

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Kroge

OK the problem is not autism vs neurotypical. There's all kinds of people on both sides. Certain sides tend to exhibit more traits than others, but utimately we're talking about a sample size of respective millions and billions. There is no solid generalizing with these numbers. There are not millions of autistic people on this Earth that resonate at the same frequency. There are not billions of others on this Earth that resonate at the same frequency.

Who you encounter in life very much depends on what your mind expects to encounter. In order to encounter a different calibre of people, regardless of their neurology, you have to train the mind to have more flexible expectations.

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Dr-David-Banner

It's kind of tricky because my own personal experiences led me to some controversial conclusions. In some ways I came to similar conclusions embraced by Malcolm X. In that case that black people were being led to believe they were not equal. So Malcolm started to teach that many advanced ancient societies (such as Sumerians) were black. And he was correct. Africa was the cradle of civilization. So, by comparison, I was led to believe AS people are third rate. I was called too slow, lazy, stupid and inferior. Till one day, like Malcolm X, I decided to stop listening to negativity and put-downs. At the same time I came to see autism spectrum people aren't "autistic" in the sense of "backwards" but rather we're inwards. We have a stronger sense of self and a lesser sense of group identity. So like black people sat at the back of buses in the Fifties, too many AS people are in some way or another discriminated against. Of course this varies from case to case and country to country. I am not saying it helps to carry a chip on the shoulder but I encountered lots of instances of exclusion. And I feel very often I need to make the point AS people have a lot to offer. Many of us are physically slow or clumsy but have other attributes to compensate.

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Kroge

Africa wasn't the cradle of civilization. Sumeria was not in Africa nor was it known to have been derived from Africa - or anywhere for that matter. No ethnic markers have been found in any evidence form, as far as I know. Wherever the first civilization was, it is as of yet unknown at our current level.

But anyway...discrimination is another thing that people can expect to see. I have about 3-5 major differences that set me apart from the norm, and whilst the pain of that has been a greater burden than I would wish on anyone, I also cannot pretend that I am discriminated against when really it's probably something else.

Ethnicity as an allegory for autism-specific issues doesn't really ring too true for me. The basis is entirely different. You can discriminate against someone who is autistic without knowing or caring at all that they're autistic.

And the sad fact is that a lot of autistic people seem to be whiners. It's probably due to the tendency for fixation, as well as other things. Like I said, people need to be more discerning about where they focus their passionate energy. It seems like most people, and this includes neurotypical and autistic alike, have a serious psychological tendency to create discrimination and oppression almost out of thin air. This can reach disturbing levels. I've long since given up trying to reason with most people when they're like this because I've concluded it's a compulsive way of thinking influenced by various intense factors.

Now this doesn't mean that discrimination isn't real, but the bottom line is, like I said above, if you choose to expect it then you will always find it. I have absolutely crushing insecurities because of my mix of differences from the norm, and a huge part of that is paranoia. Despite my paranoia and abject fear of people, I made the conscious choice to live my life as if discrimination were not an issue. It was drummed in to me from childhood that I should expect discrimination my whole life. So I chose to work with the reality in front of me and just live with these soul-destroying insecurities but try not to live like I had them. And quite simply I don't encounter much discrimination in my life at all now. Even when people around me think I've been discriminated against I am usually able to see the bigger picture and not get caught up in that kind of obsessive thinking, simply because I know it's not fully accurate to reality. And that started with a choice.

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