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      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   06/04/2017

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amberzak

How do you explain it to people

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amberzak   

I have been feeling quite down recently. Just started a new job, and the emphasis is high on socialising. I never quite fit in. And whenever something good happens to me I usually do or say something that ruins it. I never mean to, but I usually say things or do things that I shouldn't. So I have been feeling down, wishing I was normal and wishing the aspergers away. And of course my friends are trying to make me feel better by telling me that they would have me no other way etc. So I tried to explain exactly what it's like to have aspergers. They didn't really get it.

 

I tried to point out that I have absolutely no idea of body language, and tried to say it would be like me giving them something to read in a language they don't understand. I tried to explain how I never know what to say or things like that. I said about going out, they do a lot of going down the pub. And one of the girls said 'then just go'. How do I explain that quiet lunch at the pub with friends is completely different that evening crowded pub with work colleagues (who may as well be strangers to me). And how do I explain the sensory overload issue with them.

 

When I tried to explain that I don't get the jokes or whatever, they just say 'I do that sometimes too' so then I try to point out that I am like it ALL the time. My friends are all a bit different, and one of them she was in a job where she didn't fit in, so she gets that bit, but how do I explain to her what it's like for me? She's the one who said to just go to the pub.

 

She also said 'you need to ask how they are' and things like that. I do, when I remember, but there is just so much to remember. They sit and talk around the table at lunchtime (we can only eat in the staffroom and all have lunch at the same time. I dread lunchtimes). They all chat, and it's hard enough for me to keep track of what's being said, work out what they really mean (people never say what they mean), decide if what I have to say is appropriate, make sure my comment is still relevant, and know when I can actually speak. She totally doesn't get that those little bits in conversation are all a conscious effort for me. And while it may appear easy when I am around my friends, that's because with them I have learnt their little nuances, and I still even get it wrong with them, but the know me so accept it.

 

Then she said that no one makes friends in the first week. I replied that I don't want to make friends with them. I'm not interested in friends at work. I just want to not offend or upset people. I just want to not mess up.

 

But I still think my friends don't actually understand me. Because they just kept saying 'it's their problem, not yours.' but it is my problem, if I'm the one not fitting it. I'm not sure how to explain to them everything that I feel and how difficult things are, because every time I said anything, they were like 'I feel that sometimes too' and I tried to explain that I feel like it ALL the time.

 

How do you make people realise? Because they were just saying how they wouldn't want me to change, and they love my strange ways, and I was trying to get them to see what it's like to actually live with it. They seem to be able to adapt their personalities to different environment, and I can't.

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Tally   

All those things they're saying, they sound like things people say when they want to encourage you and make you feel better about yourself. Sometimes people try to make your problems seem small, because they want you to think your problems are small, so you don't feel upset about them. It sounds like your friends genuinely like you, so I expect this is what they are trying to do, and they probably don't mean to belittle your difficulties or the way you feel about them.

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dekra   

I agree with Tally, whilst what they are saying can be construed at them not understand it could also be that they are trying to understand, to put themselves in your position and give advice they think would help. It maybe that they've not done this successfully but it's nice that they have tried.

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Hiya, I got no advice at all for you I'm afraid :( I have none because every thing you just said is how I feel (except I don't have the semi-understanding friends) - there was a recent post about sympathy by smiley that is sort of similar and I just checked and you posted in it anyway so I don't need to link it lol but its kinda the same thing innit? Trying to explain in a way that people will understand what you are actually saying/trying to say...

 

I have tried to discuss AS with my parents a few times now and the comments your friends say are the same kinda thing my folks say.

 

I often struggle to explain things anyway - but AS is by far the hardest - because everything you say can be returned with comments like: "we all do that" or "we all feel that way sometimes". And even though there are little leaflet things you can get off the NAS - they don't really explain. There's kids books as well that explain it, but I haven't found anything appropriate for adults.

 

Despite all that I reckon what others have said here is right - it does at least sound like your friends accept you - but maybe that's what bugs you? It bugs me (in my life, not that your friends don't understand lol). That people say they accept you but if they aren't understanding what you are really struggling with, and what things are like for you, then maybe they don't know you enough, so how can they accept you - kinda thing :wallbash: maybe its just me who thinks that?

 

Anyway - the fact they are trying to is a good thing I reckon :)

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lilnicki   

I think the simple answer is they'll never understand because they don't have it...... i don't know about you, but i'm not very good at putting my thoughts into words anyway, so trying to explain what it's actually like to have Aspergers is nigh on impossible for me......and even if they COULD understand what i was trying to say, they would never actually experience it. I think the fact that they are TRYING to understand you though shows they are a good friend to have.

 

Nicki

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hi and welcome

I am from east sussex and have just been reading Social thinking at work: why should i care? I have found it very interesting and good.

 

could a training session be arranged at work and or would some staff read something like donna williams?

 

Though i have to say i know what you mean and have had this myself at work many times.

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could a training session be arranged at work and or would some staff read something like Donna Williams?

I can't see that Donna Williams's books would help my case. Where in Somebody Somewhere or Like Colour to the Blind does she manage to hold down a proper job?

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amberzak   

Also, I don't want people at work knowing. The problem is my friends, who already know. But I don;t want work to know. I'm ashamed to say that I am embarrassed by the condition.

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the final choice has to be yours but i would recommend you do tell certainly some people at work like your manager and those you spend most time with. I know from personal experience it has made a big difference.

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Also, I don't want people at work knowing. The problem is my friends, who already know. But I don;t want work to know. I'm ashamed to say that I am embarrassed by the condition.

I wouldn't want to tell work either I don't think (I don't work so its hard to say for certain)... ;)

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