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RiRi

What is it like to be neurotypical?

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Harrow

I heard an interesting thing once, I don't know the validity of it, but here goes someone on the spectrum uses all of their brains for every task while someone who is a neurotypical only uses the parts of their brain on a task that the task requires. 

This leads to being overwhelmed because instead of progressing in different areas of daily life like a neurotypical person who can compartmentalize someone on the spectrum gets caught up and overwhelmed by one thing.

For me this is most obvious with music, my family plays music on loud twenty-four seven and it drives me to the brink of insanity, I can't read I can't write I can't watch video's I can't think and I feel like I can no longer function because as much as I try to block the noise out, it feels as if my whole brain is consumed with it. Yet everyone else goes about their daily business without a worry in the world for the music that so consumes me. 

Or a slightly better argument, I will be with my girlfriend we will be being lovely and I'll be happy and with her and a car alarm in the distance will go off and she won't even notice, yet it will ruin the entire mood for me because once again the stimuli of the car alarm is taking up all the parts of my brain replaying it over and over again that it consumes me, while my girlfriend wouldn't even have noticed that a car alarm has gone off.

Not that someone on the spectrum can't be empty minded sometimes or unnoticing, exactly like a neurotypical person could be overwhelmed by things just as much. I think it's just the normal.

 

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Willow
13 minutes ago, Harrow said:

I heard an interesting thing once, I don't know the validity of it, but here goes someone on the spectrum uses all of their brains for every task while someone who is a neurotypical only uses the parts of their brain on a task that the task requires. 

This leads to being overwhelmed because instead of progressing in different areas of daily life like a neurotypical person who can compartmentalize someone on the spectrum gets caught up and overwhelmed by one thing.

For me this is most obvious with music, my family plays music on loud twenty-four seven and it drives me to the brink of insanity, I can't read I can't write I can't watch video's I can't think and I feel like I can no longer function because as much as I try to block the noise out, it feels as if my whole brain is consumed with it. Yet everyone else goes about their daily business without a worry in the world for the music that so consumes me. 

Or a slightly better argument, I will be with my girlfriend we will be being lovely and I'll be happy and with her and a car alarm in the distance will go off and she won't even notice, yet it will ruin the entire mood for me because once again the stimuli of the car alarm is taking up all the parts of my brain replaying it over and over again that it consumes me, while my girlfriend wouldn't even have noticed that a car alarm has gone off.

Not that someone on the spectrum can't be empty minded sometimes or unnoticing, exactly like a neurotypical person could be overwhelmed by things just as much. I think it's just the normal.

 

@Rhys this is probably a good one for you to comment on.

I think from just spending time with NT people I notice the same as you, @Harrow, that something small will completely distract me whereas they will carry on almost oblivious - or they can at least section it off so it doesn't bother them at all.

I dunno exactly how it works for Rhys, or any NT person, so it'd be interesting to find out. For example, Rhys tends to have the TV on as 'background noise', but if I'm supposed to be doing something I can't do that, have the TV on, and listen to Rhys' conversation with his friends whilst he games - it's just too much noise to blur out, so I don't tend to take any important tasks with me when I spend time with him, cause I probably won't be able to concentrate enough to do them. He also manages to still be listening to his friends through his headset whilst I'm telling him something, and then respond to me...whilst they're still talking.

@Rhys does it take any thought to do any of the above or is it just something that you don't even need to comprehend? Does it not hurt your brain (I feel like my brain actually hurts when that much stuff is going on)?

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RiRi

Good input by @Harrow and @Willow. I actually am the same and I'll be having a conversation when a bang or noise will bother me. I lose concentration. I feel like I'm sure that all hypersensitive aspies have this. I'm not sure about hyposensitive ones. But I definitely get distracted and sometimes it gets me mad. I'll start talking and then suddenly a bang. It's like my neighbors want to shut me up or they've realized that it shuts me up at least momentarily. I have noticed that NT's just keep going and I wonder if it's annoying for them that I get distracted. I'm so glad you guys shared this because now I don't feel as bad if I keep doing it. 

I've been trying to think of stuff to write on this thread but I will have to read some things because I don't want it all to be just my personality and not actual asperger's.

Edited by RiRi

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Nesf
14 hours ago, Harrow said:

For me this is most obvious with music, my family plays music on loud twenty-four seven and it drives me to the brink of insanity, I can't read I can't write I can't watch video's I can't think and I feel like I can no longer function because as much as I try to block the noise out, it feels as if my whole brain is consumed with it. Yet everyone else goes about their daily business without a worry in the world for the music that so consumes me. 

I have this exact issue with my partner and the TV. When he is in the house, he has the TV on all the time, even when he isn't actively listening to it, and it drives me nuts - especially with the commercials all the time - which, by design, are extremely distracting. But he hardly seems to notice them. If I try to watch something upstairs in my room, I can still hear the TV and I'm unable to concentrate, and I find it just about impossible to concentrate on what someone is saying with the TV in the background. I'm also very easily distracted by sudden noises, which other people don't notice, or are able to tune out and ignore.

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Rhys
21 hours ago, Willow said:

@Rhys this is probably a good one for you to comment on.

I think from just spending time with NT people I notice the same as you, @Harrow, that something small will completely distract me whereas they will carry on almost oblivious - or they can at least section it off so it doesn't bother them at all.

I dunno exactly how it works for Rhys, or any NT person, so it'd be interesting to find out. For example, Rhys tends to have the TV on as 'background noise', but if I'm supposed to be doing something I can't do that, have the TV on, and listen to Rhys' conversation with his friends whilst he games - it's just too much noise to blur out, so I don't tend to take any important tasks with me when I spend time with him, cause I probably won't be able to concentrate enough to do them. He also manages to still be listening to his friends through his headset whilst I'm telling him something, and then respond to me...whilst they're still talking.

@Rhys does it take any thought to do any of the above or is it just something that you don't even need to comprehend? Does it not hurt your brain (I feel like my brain actually hurts when that much stuff is going on)?

Umm this is a tricky one, to me non of the above is an issue, i can have multiple conversations at once whether that is as you mentioned in an online chat or in person. I've never really thought about it because i guess it comes so naturally to me. if i do happen to notice any noises, the car alarm for example, ill notice it, think to myself *huh car alarm going off over there* and then just carry on with what ever i was doing.

Rhys 

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RiRi

I have one which I think is related to ASD. When crossing a street with no traffic lights, I am more comfortable crossing when there is no car waiting for me to cross it. Like, I'd prefer to wait for the car to pass rather than cross in front of it. I hate when this happens. 

Also in lines, I like to keep my distance from people. I keep a gap in front so that I'm not that close to the person in front but behind, usually people don't seem to care how close they are to me. At times my a$$ has been touched by a complete stranger. I don't know if purposely or ... I think not purposely because I'm fat but that is how close people get to me. And it bothers me. I also try to turn away from people when I'm in line, if I'm not directly seeing them, the better. 

I don't know if NT's are ever preoccupied with these sort of things.

I will try to think of more things. 

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Ben

I'm a sort of 'eat dessert before  eating dinner' kind of guy. Give me a left handed can opener and I'll use it backwards before thinking to look for a right handed one. I'll chose methods that are generally less work on the mind rather than what I know is practical. 

But I enjoy myself. 

Edited by Ben

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RiRi

If I'm going to have dessert, I also usually eat it before my meal. It's more practical and I never understood why it's supposed to be eaten afterward.

Another thing is usually to call to places I make a script of what I'm going to say to help me. I also don't ever pick up the phone, even to family members. If it happens at all it's rarely. I just usually keep my phone on silent and sometimes I see people calling me even if it's on silent and I still don't pick up. I think it's more or less the same with text messages. For phone calls, I just too scary. For messages, sometimes I don't know what to say and sometimes I don't see the message until it's too late and I don't answer because what if their phone vibrates at 1am. Then, I forget to answer. 

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Alice

I get the impression that being a NT would feel like you belong on the earth. That you being in the world and being able to connect to some people is a given, that perhaps things just are as they seem sometimes..

Your body functions in the world - it isnt allergic to every sound, smell, sight, contact or food. You translate into the world: where you want to move, you move, if you want to speak you can generally find a way to communicate effectively, other people treat you like youre meant to be here.

Your body works for you - when you have emotions you feel them as emotions rather than getting bottled up with energy, incomprehensible agitation and overwhelm. Sensations pass through  - rather than getting jammed-up in too-narrow highways resulting explosive collisions of all the sensations pressing up against each other, magnifying eachother.

Your brain seems like a reflection of who you are - or can at least be negotiated with. Thoughts are linear, traceable - not ten trees full of branches spanning out from your head in different directions all at once. Other people are your kind of people, speaking feels like its your language. You were born here; you werent misplaced on some soul-postal-delivery-system on the way to another planet. But I wouldnt really know

 

Edited by Alice

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