inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #76 of 167: Rudy Simone (rudysimone) Mon 1 Nov 10 07:59
    
Sharon: "I've got a couple of things that I don't know whether they
would fall into that category...self stimulation, or is that something
different?"

What constitutes a stim? Stims are just soothing behaviors, so
anything that soothes you constitutes a stim. I’ve interviewed a lot of
people and particularly women, about their stims and found the usual:
rocking, spinning things, jumping up and down, playing with their hair,
humming, running back and forth, but also, picking their noses,
picking at their skin, rubbing soft fabrics. Repressing stims can lead
to higher anxiety and tics, or unhealthy habits like smoking and heavy
drinking as well as cutting and other forms of self-harm. If someone
has a stim that is causing them embarrassment, then I recommend
replacing it with something less embarrassing but not harmful. Exercise
is really helpful too. Whatever releases endorphins and tires us out
in a healthy way will help us to stim less. But I love stimming. I rock
and hum mainly. When I was repressed I had vocal and facial tics.

As for all the little polite niceties that drive us nuts, in a way
it’s best not to dig too deep. When you go to Japan, you take your
shoes off in someone’s house. It’s a cultural ritual. Same here with
that ‘have a nice day’ crap. Neurotypicals need these things to feel
safe. Poor devils.

As for “communication shutdown day” it does seem a bit misguided but I
get the drift. I do advocate people having days where they stay off
computers and Iphones anyway and pay attention to those around them. My
bf and I have those days, or at least, those hours. We’re all getting
addicted. The amount of time some people spend on Facebook they could
be learning violin or writing a book or doing something they’ve always
wanted to do instead of looking for understanding and approval from
mostly strangers. But I do it too, we all do it. 

Steve, the neurotribes space you gave over to Corinna Becker is
awesome. I have a feeling that list is going to be very popular,
oft-quoted and re-posted.  I posted my comments there.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #77 of 167: Sharon Lynne Fisher (slf) Mon 1 Nov 10 08:26
    
A friend of mine notes the high number of Asperger's people in
unconventional relationships such as BDSM and polyamory. Now, it could
be correlation not causation, since the people we know in those areas
are also largely computer geeks. However, I wonder to what extent
Asperger's people are drawn to such types of relationship because of
the more explicit role of negotiation and process and discussion in
such relationships.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #78 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Mon 1 Nov 10 09:29
    
Fascinating!
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #79 of 167: paralyzed by a question like that (debunix) Mon 1 Nov 10 10:35
    
From the list linked above in #73

"11. I know that the world is an intense place. It screeches and
screams, burns, freezes, and bursts into brilliance......the soaring
heights of pure wonder...."

I love photography because it allows me to share some of that pure
wonder and brilliance with people who might otherwise be missing some
of it.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #80 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Mon 1 Nov 10 10:42
    
Wonderful.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #81 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Mon 1 Nov 10 10:42
    
Rudy, what has been the most unexpected result of writing your books?
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #82 of 167: Betsy Schwartz (betsys) Mon 1 Nov 10 13:10
    <scribbled by betsys Mon 1 Nov 10 13:12>
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #83 of 167: . (wickett) Mon 1 Nov 10 13:35
    

Do you happen to know of a psychiatrist/psychologist in the Bay Area who is
competent to diagnose Asperger's in adult females?
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #84 of 167: pseudoanthropos (abloner) Mon 1 Nov 10 15:26
    
It has been easier for me to find some place in small groups, where I
was not obliged to have a tete a tete with anybody, but I could have a
status of present-not-present in the group. When I felt unhappy I could
simply quit. Later in my life I knew that my abrupt disappearances
were considered one of my odd peculiarities. These small groups,
somehow tied to the political climate of the 70s, don't exist anymore,
at least for me. I imagine that if there were some havens for autistic
people, they should have this basic rule: the right to appear and
disappear (or quit) any time at whim.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #85 of 167: Mary Mills (largo) Mon 1 Nov 10 16:05
    
I agree, anyone should have the right to express themselfs in a
private form, or with any degree of help that they need to empower them
- it should be there choice.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #86 of 167: . (wickett) Mon 1 Nov 10 20:06
    

Nicely described, abloner.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #87 of 167: pseudoanthropos (abloner) Tue 2 Nov 10 01:50
    
If I cannot decipher the Other’s intentions, I cannot have friends. 
If I cannot “read” Other, how can I know what Other means when talking
to me? Words, sentences, judgments expressed to me are acts, have a
pragmatic value, are charged, possess intentionality. “Good evening”
does not mean that Other augurs you to spend merrily my time for the
rest of the day. This should be obvious. If Other wanted me to end up
in hospital for a fall (this may well be sometimes), he wouldn’t tell
me that straight away. The real meaning of “good evening” may be that,
for now, he/she considers me an acceptable member of the humanity known
to him/her. To really know something more relevant I should analyze
the tone he uses, his body language, smile, kind of smile (is it a
sincere smile or just cold conventional?). Most people don’t need to do
these analysis for two reasons 1) they have an instinctive capability
to read the other speech-acts. 2) they don’t have the need (that I
have) to be assured of Other’s sympathy. So life is an ordeal for me
and many others  like me.

In the elevator I meet sometime  a lady who, if I greet her, doesn't
return my greet. So I stopped greeting her, but generally I avoid the
elevator when I see her. If I don't succeed in this the 45 seconds of
an hostile look at me is a horrible experience. 
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #88 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Tue 2 Nov 10 07:13
    
Wow, abloner.  Your descriptions of your experience are so precise and 
vivid;  have you ever written a memoir?
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #89 of 167: pseudoanthropos (abloner) Tue 2 Nov 10 09:17
    
When I was sixteen (I believe) I formulated this situation: I was
condemned to death but I couldn't tell this thing to anybody (kind of
Marshall Rommel's condition after the July1944 plot - of course I was
of some less consequence than Rommel: Rommel was obliged to kill
himself to save his family and he wouldn’t have saved himself anyway.
He couldn’t  talk with anybody, about his situation, except with his
wife. That was much more than was allowed to me. He had a family and
his life made sense to him until then.)

There was another idea obsessing me at that age. I called it the
"metaphysical sickness", though, at that time, I didn’t know much about
metaphysics and I wonder where and how I picked up that word. I asked
myself: "why me?”  I felt alone in the universe and wondered why I was
alone in this bubble of consciousness? I may add: for brief moments I
have felt what life should have been not being autistic. It's the
difference from being at home and being lost in the wilderness. They
were brief moments of outings and in these days I could sleep well and
I felt at home in the world.

Yes I wrote a short autobiographical essay, which has been published
in Italy a few years ago under pseudonym (Lapo Marini). The pseudonym
was part of my solitary confinement perhaps.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #90 of 167: Rudy Simone (rudysimone) Tue 2 Nov 10 09:52
    
Sharon: “A friend of mine notes the high number of Asperger's people
in unconventional relationships such as BDSM and polyamory...we know in
those areas are also largely computer geeks.”

First of all, not everyone who has Aspergers is a computer geek. We
use them, and yes, some of us use them more than others and can take
them apart, put them back together, write code, etc, but in all honesty
most of the people on the spectrum whom I’ve interviewed, who are
diagnosed, do not work in hi-tech, but in the visual arts, music or
service industries. Many work outdoors as laborers, anthropologists, in
the classroom as teachers, or as soldiers and as cops. I’ve said it
before and I’ll say it again, Silicon valley isn’t big enough to
accommodate us all, and many of us don’t want to work there anyway. 

I cannot confirm or disagree with your friend’s observation “a high
number of Aspies are in unconventional relationships.” You’ll meet
Aspies in every social circle and subculture. I’ve even met an Aspie
cheerleader recently (!) But we can be surprisingly conservative
despite our eccentricities. You see, the idea of dealing with several
partners would be too much for some of us, too complicated. One is hard
enough...all the talking, negotiating, exposure to another, sharing
our time and taking time away from our obsessions. (Unless our
obsession is another person or sex—that does happen quite a bit.) 
I’ve heard from a psychologist friend that there is a higher rate of
homosexuality among autistics, but again, I have encountered no
significant evidence of that. (My data is collected via questionnaires,
interviews and observation). But because gender is not so important to
us, I’ve heard many say that they don’t care what gender their partner
is. But personally I think the gay population on the spectrum is no
more and no less than in the general population. 
Our sexual predilections have the same variety as non-autistic people,
with one difference. Because of the hypersensitivity of autism
(sensory issues), we are going to love sex or hate it. I’ve found
there’s little in between in those I’ve spoken to on the subject. I was
surprised at how many women in their 20’s were virgins or had sex once
and hated it, scared to have it again. Most I’ve interviewed were in a
monogamous relationship or single. I’ve only interviewed two people
who were polyamorous. Women with AS in the sex industry is something
I'm interested in researching. Our practicality can override our
emotion and we may think “I like dancing and I like money, therefore I
should dance for money” without realizing there are a myriad of
potential social and personal consequences to that. I don’t mean to
sound like I’m making a moral judgment. But women with AS are very easy
to take advantage of and we are better off staying away from areas
where we could find ourselves being swayed into things that deep down
inside we know are not right for us. I may be co-writing a book on AS
and Sex with Robyn Steward and I know Liane Holliday Willey is writing
a book on keeping safe for AS women. This is a really big issue for us.


Steve: “Rudy, what has been the most unexpected result of writing your
books?”

How broke I still am, even though all three of my books are top
sellers. And also, if someone told me ten years ago I’d be a keynote
speaker at autism/Asperger conferences I would have told them their
crystal ball needed glasses.


Wicket: “Do you happen to know of a psychiatrist/psychologist in the
Bay Area who is competent to diagnose Asperger's in adult females?”

I am compiling a list of doctors around the world who have diagnosed
adult females, and it’s pretty damn slim. But do get in touch with me
in a week or two via my help4aspergers web site and I’ll make
enquiries. We had a female AS event here in San Fran in September and I
was very dismayed that doctors, psychologists and other local
professionals attended in…what’s the opposite of droves?


Anthropos: this tendency to appear and disappear abruptly is quite
common and if we’re talking about a social situation, then of course it
should be allowed and not judged. But it has caused us many problems
in relationships and in jobs. When other people are counting on us, it
can hurt them. if you are opening the shop and you don’t show up for
example, or you are a valued member of staff and you quit suddenly, it
causes others problems. I wrote in my book “aspergers on the job” if
you don’t believe in karma, you might believe in references and
recommendations and people who do this at work will not have these. You
must give notice. I know what I’m talking about. I’m the biggest damn
bridge-burner there ever was. I quit America and several other
countries as well as jobs and relationships, with little or no warning.

This tendency to come and go at will hurts partners too. Men with AS
tend to do this more than women with AS---just stop coming over and
calling for weeks on end. This can cause the woman, whether she has AS
or not, a lot of pain and confusion. Again, I totally understand how
and why it happens but my job as a relationship coach is to see that if
the one who does the disappearing act wants to keep his or her
partner, they have to learn to empathize with the other persons’ needs
and feelings. It is a good role for me, because I can see both sides of
the equation.

I just saw a new post from pseudoanthropos: I'll read that today and
address tomorrow. I'm enjoying this convo and everyone's insights!
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #91 of 167: . (wickett) Tue 2 Nov 10 10:56
    

Thanks!  I will.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #92 of 167: pseudoanthropos (abloner) Tue 2 Nov 10 11:34
    
Rudy: what you say is quite reasonable and fair. I know that in some
situations I have caused suffering and this adds to my unhappiness now.
But, when I was young, I didn't understand that a stable relationship
or role was totally out of my reach. As a matter of fact I have never
had a partner, nor was I in a team. I might have been a decent
translator, or editor, or proof reader (I did these things without
damage to any person or group), but it took an entire life to see where
I should _not_ have treaded. And after all it's very difficult to
convince oneself there is no home for you.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #93 of 167: Gail Williams (gail) Tue 2 Nov 10 17:41
    
Such a hard road. My heart goes out to you in these struggles,
abloner.  

Aspergirls, I suspect that there are times when you do feel some
empathy.  But I don't know.  I perhaps have a handful of Asperger-like
characteristics, and I'm awash in pain and respect for <abloner> 

And that confuses me, since like most people I want to project and
thus imagine others feel the same way I do.  Rudy, can you explain more
about how Aspergirls and Asperguys handle experiences or perceptions
of sorrow and empathy?
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #94 of 167: Mary Mills (largo) Wed 3 Nov 10 06:20
    
Like in any body i feel god calls us together to support one another.
All good relation prospers in mutual respect and honesty.. Do u agree?
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #95 of 167: Rudy Simone (rudysimone) Wed 3 Nov 10 08:29
    

Pseudoanthropos:“it took an entire life to see where I should _not_
have treaded. And after all it's very difficult to convince oneself
there is no home for you.”

I’m not entirely sure what you mean by this. You do have a home, of
course you do. Aspies have the same right to be here as anyone. What
you may not have is the support and validation you require. I often say
that ‘Having understanding and support can mean the difference between
a life fully expressed and a painful existence.’ I hope you find
yours. You are obviously a kind and gentle soul and you deserve friends
and to be happy. I highly recommend going to AS support groups.
Initially I didn’t because I didn’t want to be seen on the short bus,
so to speak. But I am happier and more comfortable in a room full of
autistic people, whether they are high-functioning or not, than just
about anywhere. If you are local I highly recommend AASCEND. You can
find them online or on Facebook. 

As for “In the elevator I meet sometime  a lady who, if I greet her,
doesn't return my greet. So I stopped greeting her, but generally I
avoid the elevator when I see her.”
I have the same problem. There are women who sit on their porches in
my neighborhood and I never know what to say to them, so I hate walking
past them. I wear headphones and sunglasses, and I smile. We have to
have a sense of humor about ourselves, and humility. And know that in
some cases maybe it isn’t you…maybe the other person really is a jerk.
There are very few people I seriously dislike but they tend to be loud,
pushy and ruled by insecurity, jealousy and greed. 


Gail Williams: “Rudy, can you explain more about how Aspergirls and
Asperguys handle experiences or perceptions of sorrow and empathy?”

I think this is the most confusing aspect of Aspergers. Many of us
are, or at least were, overly-empathetic in some ways. I used to cry
for other people’s pain all the time. But this is true for myself and
others I’ve spoken to, once that empathy strand is broken it an be very
hard to repair. It can be mistake for a kind of sociopathy as well,
when we’re just being honest. I had a landlady who used me to fix up
her house then evicted me and sold it for 33% more than it was worth
before. When she died I laughed because I figured the world was a
better place without her. But, if I see a person in trouble, I will
rush to their defense without thought for my own safety. If I see
someone in pain, I can be so empathetic I physically feel it. Usually
terrible pain shoots from my hips to my toes. And mind you, this can be
because I see a friend with a broken arm, or a character in a film
getting hurt. I have to close my eyes a lot. I think that is why we
tend to dislike overly emotional, cheesy things. Life is already an
onslaught of sensations and emotions. You’ll find that is true for the
most spock-like of Aspies too. I had a client who said he had ‘no
emotions’ then within a half hour he admitted he was ‘highly
sensitive’.

Mary, I’m sorry but I do not feel inclined to discuss my beliefs in
god on this forum. Honesty? yes, of course. But I do not have respect
for all people. Everyone gets my respect initially, but they certainly
can lose it.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #96 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Wed 3 Nov 10 09:04
    
Gail, lack of empathy among Aspies is HUGELY overhyped.  It may be a 
fiction that will eventually be discarded.  I think it's more like a 
tendency to get overstimulated, processing issues for facial expressions 
(and other "people-centric" stimuli), and different ways of expressing 
themselves. 

After spending several days with 85 autistic people this past summer at 
Autreat (http://www.autreat.com), I remember thinking, "Well, that was 
great, except for the minor fact that I probably got fewer hugs this week 
than I ever did in my life." Then within TWO MINUTES, an autistic girl 
came up to me and asked me if she could hug me because of something I'd 
said earlier.  Stupid neurotypicals!
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #97 of 167: Gail Williams (gail) Wed 3 Nov 10 10:16
    
Thanks, Rudy & Steve.  I felt awkward asking about it but I felt I had
to.  
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #98 of 167: Mary Mills (largo) Wed 3 Nov 10 10:20
    
mainstream them, most likely they`re do fine
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #99 of 167: . (wickett) Wed 3 Nov 10 10:55
    

Thank you, abloner.  You have a gift for conveying the dynamics inside
yourself.  Tears came to my eyes.  I'm glad you're here.
  
inkwell.vue.396 : Rudy Simone, "Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Aspergerís Syndrome"
permalink #100 of 167: Steve Silberman (digaman) Wed 3 Nov 10 12:09
    
Me too.
  

More...



Members: Enter the conference to participate

Subscribe to an RSS 2.0 feed of new responses in this topic RSS feed of new responses

 
   Join Us
 
Home | Learn About | Conferences | Member Pages | Mail | Store | Services & Help | Password | Join Us

Twitter G+ Facebook