I know this is pretty futile musing, although maybe some of the more neurologically typical people on here can help! (I shy away from using the term "NT's" because it feels a bit "them and us" to me).
I've found myself wondering, as I'm accepting, exploring and deepening my understanding of my own atypicalness & ASD diagnosis, about what it's like for others.
For every "aha!" moment I have about e.g. noisy restaurants, eye contact, lack of capability / impetus to maintain friendships, exhaustion in social situations, there is a corresponding "What's it like for others?" moment.
So for example, for typical people:
I'm done with Christmas Cards said:How does eye contact *feel* when experienced as something that you *want* to do? Even with strangers
I am going to attempt an answer to this one. When my nephew was a baby, more of a toddler perhaps, he was very placid and would sit on my lap and babble or poke my face. I used to cuddle him and stare into his eyes - they were lovely and big. At some point I have gone from staring into his eyes to almost zero eye contact, as he is now grown up. I have no clue what happened in between.
When I need to do eye contact, such as an interview or something very important I practice by talking to a photo of a family member (they are on the wall in my hall). Then when i have to do it for real i pretend it's still the photo. It takes a whole bundle of energy spoons but has been worthwhile when it mattered.
So in summary I like to imagine that eye contact should be nice, like looking into the twinkly eyes of a baby or a loved one in a photo.
By the way I know it’s not that simple.... looking at a baby is nearly a reptile brain reflex whereas interacting 2 way with an adult... where to start.? But I’m thinking how to access this kingdom, if you get what I mean...