I've recently self-diagnosed ASD. (First thought was depression, social anxiety, then ADHD.) after some research I'm pretty sure it's ASD.
I have heard about ASD peeps "not having empathy" and I wondered what that meant to you?
For me - I love humans and think they have the potential to be fantastic. However, most humans annoy me and I find them very, very strange.
I am very empathetic to teenagers, animals and have a strong sense of justice for persecuted minorities as a whole (asylum seekers, women etc)
However - when it comes to the individual feelings of people around me - I only care if it effects me? I don't think this is 'neurotypical' - is this an ASD thing or am I just a psychopath? Lol.
No but seriously what's wrong with me!
Empathy is a concept and nothing more. It is utterly impossible to know what it's like to be someone else - this isn't my opinion this is a straight fact. If empathy was possible every NT person would understand every ND person. But they don't. They appear to have empathy towards other NT people because they follow a similar set of principles to themselves and that allows them to apply rules for showing appropriate levels of sympathy.
I wouldn't worry about it if I were you!
Yasmyn said:when it comes to the individual feelings of people around me - I only care if it effects me?
Maybe bigger picture stuff going on here - it could be because it does not involve you that you cannot comprehend how it affects the other people. Do you truly not care? Or are you unable to help and so do not concern yourself with the issue?
I get told I am incapable of empathy all the time which really winds me up because nobody is capable of it, they only appear to be. I'm not cold-hearted I know how give sympathy and comfort my loved ones when they have problems. My understanding of other people's emotions is very minimal however - I can tell what emotion they are feeling but I have no idea how to gauge how deep that emotion is running in them. Therefore when compared to a NT person I do appear to have very little empathy but this is purely because I only understand emotion on a very basic scale.
Thank you for your response.
I agree with you that empathy is a concept. That makes sense.
When you say 'do you truely not care?' I don't want anyone to be sad or upset. But also.... I can't control how they feel?
I mean, I can, in a sense, with my actions but that doesn't stop me from sometimes being selfish and doing things that I think are right which may make other people stressed or sad.
I know I am not always right. But if it feels right for me then surely it is right?
I stand by my statement that humans are strange.
Yasmyn said:I stand by my statement that humans are strange.
Yasmyn said:When you say 'do you truely not care?' I don't want anyone to be sad or upset. But also.... I can't control how they feel?
I understand what you mean now, so you do care about the person but you are true to your actions and do what you think is right. Which I can understand - that's all anybody can do, do what they think is right to help solve the situation i.e. what they would do in the same situation.
Communication and words are very complicated and when used in a neurotypical sense are a minefield of hidden meanings, status upgrades and manipulation. I thought I understood people and interactions but the more I've read about NT communication the more I've come to realise how clueless I was to the things happening around me everyday.
For example, a NT person can over-emphasize their need for attention relating to a particular issue. Purely for that reason - to gain attention. They don't actually want help, they want attention to make themselves feel better. Another NT who understands this may provide all the attention they require in a public display of affection increasing their status as 'caring' person in the process (whilst seeming to have a deep understanding of empathy). Nothing gets solved, the issue remains but both walk away feeling good about themselves.... weird!
I'm learning that if a loved one vents about something to just say supporting words and give them a hug - to me it's pointless stuff that doesn't solve the initial problem but actually it's what they want. Why they can;t just say "I need a hug, I'm feeling well down today" I will never know... My natural response is to take on all the information they have given me and without emotion I will breakdown it down and try to come up with a solution. The other person is frustrated because they aren't getting what they want (a hug!) and I'm getting frustrated because they really don't seem to grasp the solution I have presented for them!
Yes to it all Cloud7
I hate the idea that I'm making someone stressed - especially people I care for and love.
I am always told 'I don't want a solution to the problem, I just want you to *listen*' and I think 'I am listening.....' ?
Thanks again for your contribution.
Yes, that's a good way of putting it. Do you find that when you stop and actually just listen (as they've requested) that they actually want your feedback (which isn't just listening!). Sometimes I feel like the other person is purposely playing with me...! It's confusing..
I find that NT are not forward with what they want and that can be very confusing.
ND people are straight about who they are - so if I don't like them, I know straight away! Whereas NT peeps can sometimes be sneaky with their true personalities.
Cloud7 said:My natural response is to take on all the information they have given me and without emotion I will breakdown it down and try to come up with a solution. The other person is frustrated because they aren't getting what they want (a hug!) and I'm getting frustrated because they really don't seem to grasp the solution I have presented for them!
Why can't NTs be more NA? i.e. Say what you mean, mean what you say.
Use your words, not 'telempathy'... FFS!
Original Prankster said: Say what you mean, mean what you say.
If everybody did this the world would be an amazing place. The more I understand about NT communication, which until quite recently I thought I knew, understood and communicated in the same way, the less I can comprehend it... It's so complicated, yet to them it's natural. I can't get my mind around that.
Here's my main confusion:
I think I understand on a basic level when something is implied. So by only implying it, they are not actually saying it - to save face if it doesn't go their way. E.g. somebody suggesting to go on a date with somebody else without saying "do you want to go on a date?". So without saying it, you can be rejected, but because you didn't actually say those words somehow the rejection doesn't apply?? Even though they BOTH KNOW what is really being said?!?! So the person doing the letting down doesn't feel bad (because they didn't actually say the words "no, I do not want to go on a date with you") and the person being let down doesn't feel let down (because they didn't actually ask!) BUT BOTH KNOW WHAT'S ACTUALLY BEING TALKED ABOUT?!?! Absolutely. Insane.