What is wrong with me?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by dontwalkhand, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. dontwalkhand macrumors 601


    Jul 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    GAH I have Asperger's Syndrome, and It frustrates me to all hell when they state the bloody obvious to me. For example, when I was in 6th grade:

    "John! Stop playing with the tape measure, It's not a toy!"
    Another kid would then take the teacher's words and use it on me later, making sure to also insert the underlined portion in his/her sentence, when they also find me playing with the tape measure again later on.

    Why the hell do they feel the need to say the underlined portion? Had they just told me to stop, I would've just stopped. But because they had to add that portion, I got mad and started a fight over this, and told the teacher that I am not stupid.

    More sayings that somehow piss me off:

    "Don't touch that, you're not old enough" (I am 21 now, but this was when I was helping my dad pack stuff up in a bag, when I was 14 and he had beer)...for some reason this one still pisses me off when I am in the presence of this being said to ANOTHER PERSON
    "Don't try to drive the car, you don't have your license yet"
    "Don't touch anything in the driver's seat of the bus, you're not the bus driver"
    "I can do whatever I want because, It's MY computer"
    "John, don't touch that, It's MINE not YOURS"

    When people say sentences like that to me, I seem to have a complete meltdown and go crazy towards whoever that person may be. If they were just to use simple commands such as "Stop" or "Don't touch that, please" I would be ok, and just comply to their request. But because they feel the need to "clarify" things, I get MAD and ANGRY.

    But yet when its something like this
    "Don't cross the street, the light is red" or "Open the door, It's nice and cool outside" I am completely FINE with it, I don't throw a fit, and I am ok, I just comply.

    So do I just hate specific sentences or something? I don't get it either, and I am the one who gets irritated! Do I just chalk it up as me having a huge amount of negativity to sentences with suffixes? Ha ha.

    I feel sorry for my roommates who have to deal with me, but I am sure they only like me because I clean up the apartment. :(
  2. andalusia macrumors 68030


    Apr 10, 2009
    Manchester, UK
    Honestly, I do think you might be overreacting. People say that sort of stuff all the time, to anybody, regardless of any disability they may have. I think it's natural to add the clarification in, even if it might be obvious, because then it rules out any other reasons for not wanting you to do something.

    From what I can gather you dislike those sentences because you feel they're adding the obvious statements just because you have Asperger's Syndrome, but in reality I don't think that's it at all. I think people say it to anybody. Just my two cents.
  3. richard.mac macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2007
    51.50024, -0.12662
    IMO people say stuff like what is underlined to mean they are serious. some may use it to insult, but i think most will use it to show authority and that they really want you to take action in what they asked.

    maybe you are overreacting a bit, dont get angry. if they use it to insult then you can get angry.
  4. sammich macrumors 601


    Sep 26, 2006
    Frankly, I find it quite condescending just to read some of those phrases. Granted, I don't hang out/spend any extended time with anyone with AS (I know one person about my age with AS), so I'm not familiar with how those near to them react to their behaviour. They are pointing out the obvious and it would drive anyone of age insane unless some decent amount of sarcasm is used.
  5. Balin64 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2002
    In a Mauve Dream
    Hey. Please calm down. I get you. Although Im not on the spectrum Im sure the rules will change soon. Be yourself, do good work and stay focused on what you love. I'm sure it will be wonderful.

    Keep us informed on your artistic progress. Im sure it will be wonderful.
  6. stonyc macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2005
    I was diagnosed with AS just a year ago, so some of what you are saying sounds quite familiar to me. I tend to get extremely impatient with people when they do not say what they actually mean... I really prefer more direct conversations, almost like what you are describing. If you don't want me to do something, just tell me not to do it. I don't like to have a 30 minute dissertation on why you don't want me to do it...

    But at the same time, I'm learning that sometimes it is not just about me. Other people don't always think the way that I do or process information in the same way that I do... case in point, if my wife had a bad day and wants to talk about it, I used to get extremely frustrated if she didn't "get to the point" and just tell me what was wrong so that I could attempt to fix it. Instead, I have to learn (still trying) that part of her experience is explaining not only what happened, but why it happened, how she felt about it. Sometimes she doesn't want, or the situation doesn't allow itself to be fixed... sometimes, it is just about sharing the experience.

    It doesn't help that I also have underlying issues with ADHD that have gone undiagnosed through highschool, college, and graduate school until just recently.

    As far as the difference that I can see about the difficulties that you are having with certain sayings compared to others... I think a big one is that in the first examples, there seems to be an implied (whether intentional or not) judgment that you seem to be threatened by (both justified or not). Whereas in contrast, the second set of sayings are much more observational in tone. At least, that's what I am sensing.

    Oh, and there's nothing wrong with you.

    Personally, being diagnosed with AS was a huge relief to me... I used to think that I was just a ginormous asshat for no reason... but now I know that I'm a ginormous asshat because I have AS. :)
  7. mstrze macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    Actually, there is nothing abnormal about your reaction to your wife. It's the normal difference between how males and females deal with problems. Men are always seeking out solutions to a problem whereas women can solve many of their issues, simply by talking about them. There are even times within those conversations where we men think our spouse is accusing us of something or saying, in effect, why can't you do something about it, when in reality, she is just necesarily 'venting'. She feels as great at the end of her venting (when you listen to her and don't give solutions) as we do when we have fixed something that was broken.

    A good read about the differences between the way men and women process things is "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus".

    Just listen actively, and hold your tongue when you think you are being accused of something and things will end up rosey soon enough. :)

    I hope you are actually experiencing these syndromes/diseases and not just being medicated for no real reason. :( You really don't sound like you are any different from any 'normal' man.
  8. stonyc, Feb 18, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2011

    stonyc macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2005
    Oh no, there's much more. :( Many of the so-called common problems are exacerbated by my AS.

    EDIT: Let me clarify re: the wife example...

    It wasn't just the frustration of her not "getting to the point"... there were many times where she would describe a situation or describe her feelings regarding a situation, and my response would be "So what?". It was very difficult for me to assign an appropriate emotional context to a given situation... I just couldn't get it. I couldn't understand why she felt the way that she did.

    Believe me, it took me years to get the point of being diagnosed with AS. It started with me reading about a few years ago, and thinking that what other people were describing seemed pretty familiar. I broached the subject with my wife, who is a physician, and she flat out told me "No, that's not possible." When I sat down and researched the subject more, it became more and more painfully obvious. Flat affect? Check. Monotonic speaking voice? Check, especially in stressful situations. Difficulty reading social situations? Painfully so.

    I looked back on past experiences, especially those left me extremely confused or frustrated. It was all there decades before.

    I've seen a therapist and a psychiatrist. AS is there. Do I wish it weren't? Hell yes.
  9. iPhoneCollector macrumors 6502a


    Nov 30, 2010
  10. Rt&Dzine macrumors 6502a


    Oct 8, 2008
    Someone could develop an AS app. What sentences to say to someone with AS to avoid annoying the heck out of them. A translator of sorts.

    (I know, I know. This puts the responsibility on the other people.)
  11. IntelliUser macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    Why does it matter?
    What's wrong with you? Asperger's syndrome, of course.
  12. Mord macrumors G4


    Aug 24, 2003
    For it to work it would have to be programmable, so you'd give your iphone to said aspie, have them program in all their pet hates.

    There are no real universal rules with such tendencies, I always hated being told flatly to do or not do things with no given reason, as unless I was provided with one I never saw the point in complying.
  13. NickZac macrumors 68000


    Dec 11, 2010
    Those sayings are common. They are almost surely not targeting you at a personal level by stating the obvious, as they often say those things. It's part of how our culture is...we say good/bad/go/stop/yes/no and then justify it based on a blatant observation.

    This is the same as the "hey how ya doin'?" you say to people. You don't actually want to hear how they are doing and anything other than a few words breaks a cultural rule. Why do we say it? Mainly because we learned it from our culture.

    Getting less upset will start with you understanding that you are probably not being targeted, but people are stating the obvious due to a reasoning they have been taught and enforced by society.
  14. Eclipse278 macrumors regular

    Jan 21, 2007
    Most people hate being told what to do. The underlined sentences are a social way of saying "theres a reason im telling you this, I'm not just being a dick".
  15. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Most parents, teachers and adults have for years felt that just saying stop doing something was improper. In away they were treating less as a kid because they were providing the reasoning to you.

    Stop playing with the tape measure because its not a toy

    I do that all the time with my children, and they understand why. On the flip side, see it from the teacher's perspective. You're playing with a tool, i.e., using it in a manner that's not acceptable. So they're just saying because its not a toy you need to stop using it as such.

    Kids taking what the teacher says and being overbearing is just what kids do.
  16. MoodyMedStudent, Feb 19, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2011

    MoodyMedStudent macrumors member

    Feb 16, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    For those who are unfamiliar with the term, Asperger's Syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder and one of the signs of the disorder is the individual's relative lack of empathy in social interactions. That is to say, they have difficulty acknowledging and understanding the other person's feeling's and point of view. This is a phenomenon refereed to as "mind-blindness", which is defined as the "inability to predict the beliefs and intentions of others." Another sign found in AS is alexithymia, which means that the individual has a hard time interpreting his or her own emotions or emotions of others. As a result they can have difficulty recognizing and regulating strong emotions like sadness or anger and this can cause sudden affective outbursts of such emotions without a reasonable basis.

    Although people with AS vary with one another, these two typical characteristics of AS can explain what dontwalkhand is experiencing when he or she hears such things in social interactions...

    Just to illustrate... perhaps when someone tells dontwalkhand to not touch a computer because it belongs to someone else, dontwalkhand may interprets it as "Obviously I knew that. Does he think I'm stupid or something!?" instead of "He does not want me to touch his computer because he doesn't like others to touch his things." When the intention is mistaken as hostility, it makes dontwalkhand react with anger.
  17. Tower-Union macrumors 6502


    May 6, 2009
    I find it interesting that all of the examples from OP that set him off are things that relate to him, or what he is doing. While the examples that DON'T bother him have nothing to do with him directly.

    Coincidence or something to look at?
  18. ender land macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2010
    For well over two years I have been teaching myself to react differently when I am mad at what someone else says.

    Instead of thinking immediately "that @#%#" or "what a jerk" I try to think "am I understanding correctly?" or "why would that upset me?" because honestly, in the majority of cases, I have no grounds other than personal reasons for being upset.

    Maybe I'm tired, had a bad day, was distracted, frustrated, etc. Either way, the majority of the time I realize it isn't the other person's actions which should be sparking the reaction, it's me.

    I'm not sure if you are asking for advice (my thought would be yes? considering you post something like this on a public forum?) but I would consider trying something like that. It takes a lot of practice and training and is a never ending process but has DEFINITELY helped me in situations like you describe.

    I tend to be a proud person, so comments like you said also drive me up the wall - I instinctively think "duh, you think?" or something equally as sarcastic when people say things in that way about things I already know.
  19. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Sounds just like anyone else. It doesn't relate to a person, it won't bother that person.
  20. Tower-Union macrumors 6502


    May 6, 2009
    So does Aspergers just make people more sensitive to this sort of thing then a "normal" person?
  21. Xeperu macrumors 6502

    May 3, 2010
    AS is in new fashion. In a few years it will go out of fashion and everyone will stop "having" it.

    It's an excuse for people who are socially weak, blaming it on a disease. Just like fat people blaming their thyroid. 90% of the cases, nothing wrong with it. Same with AS.
  22. Mord macrumors G4


    Aug 24, 2003
    For some cases, yeah, sure, it can be an over diagnosed thing. For others though that mentality is just dismissive and frankly offensive. :rolleyes:

    A lot of people I know have used their diagnosis not as an excuse but as a way to further understand the issues they have and work around problems rather than just not trying because they have aspergers.

    It's not the same thing as simply being "socially weak", it's a fundamental difference in thought process that has far reaching consequences, the social aspect is a mere side effect.
  23. CorvusCamenarum macrumors 65816


    Dec 16, 2004
    Birmingham, AL
    It's not a coincidence. While those of us with AS are usually highly intelligent (genius-level IQs are not uncommon) on paper, one area where we fall behind the normal population is in developing empathy for others. I was diagnosed 6 years ago, and I've learned to mentally check myself with regards to what I say or do around others, as I could say something that to me seems perfectly normal and correct, but to anyone else sounds like I'm being an unfeeling ass.

    That's an incredibly insensitive thing to say.

Share This Page