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Featured Cognitive empathy/theory of mind

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Gift2humanity, Feb 18, 2021.

  1. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Aspergers/autistics are known to have a lot of affective empathy, which is often misunderstood by professionals. The ability to feel what someone else is feeling.

    What I lack, and many other people on the spectrum, is cognitive empathy/theory of mind, the ability to gauge others intentions, mental states.

    It is the lack of this second type of empathy, the title of the thread that has caused vulnerability in me, as lacking this type of empathy means I am easily manipulated.

    My question is, who on here has got cognitive empathy/theory of mind?
    My other question is, what helped you get cognitive empathy/theory of mind?
     
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  2. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Mines not bad, though I can be naive and realise it sometimes in retrospect, but presumably other times I don't. I am very much a thinker, and have done a lot of therapy, I think a combination of liking to think things through and reflect, developing logical thinking and reflective thinking through education and trainings, and doing therapy, all have helped me have a version of cognitive empathy that works quite well.

    Just to say, I do not think our emotional empathy works the same as what is often meant by the term. What I sometimes get emotionally is a kind of download effect from others, whereas I think usually what is meant by this term is that the person, picks up on what the other is feeling in an emotional and cognitive way, a way that implies emotional and cognitive understanding.

    I actually don't usually empathise through feeling anything, but my close observation of others along with my thinking produces quite a good substitute. Useful for a counsellor.
     
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  3. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Thank you, it sounds as if you do have Tom. Did you read fiction as a child?
     
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  4. Finder

    Finder Active Member

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    This gives me a lot of problems. Not only am I manipulated, but I cannot see the hidden agendas other have.
     
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  5. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Me neither
     
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  6. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I did read fiction as a child, tons of it. That probably did help. Except actually the world isn't a lot like school stories from the turn of the century, E. Nesbit adventures of a similar era, Rosemary Sutcliff stories of Roman Britain etc. I had a romantic view of the world, but it's an aspect of how things are I guess.
     
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  7. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Like me, we’re you easily manipulated?
     
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  8. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I wasn't easily manipulated, I think because I always had a certain mistrust of others that came from my father's approach to the world. I think he was an Aspie. But I was never so cynical as he seemed at times. I was and am more of a health and safety officer, as it were. Pointing out potential dangers and pitfalls to myself and sometimes others.
     
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  9. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Thanks. I hope it’s ok that I have decided to follow you.
    I wanted to read more of your posts but I respect that you prefer to keep your profiles readership limited.
    Do you think it was fiction reading that helped you to spot dangers and pitfalls, or your Dads influence?
    Although I am risk averse, my impulsivity has opened me to dangers and pitfalls in my life.
     
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  10. Soleil

    Soleil Well-Known Member

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    I don't quite understand these terms...

    I think I'm pretty good at cognitive empathy. I don't really have a lot of experience dealing with people, so I don't have a lot of real life practice, but I've taken some online tests and come out pretty much on the same level as NTs.

    As for feeling other people's emotions, I don't know. Honestly, if they're upset or anxious, then I get anxious too. If they're sad, then I feel awkward because I don't know how to fix it. And if they're happy, everything is fine.

    I am pretty naïve though, and it once cost me almost all of my Pokémon cards. And if people treat me nice, I'm nice back, even if they have a history of being mean to me. Not because I'm super forgiving or anything, it just doesn't occur to me to act otherwise.
     
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  11. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Well I think it's often a combination of things that add up to the way a person is, different aspects of personality, upbringing, parental influences, neurology, intellect, etc. And what one then does to address issues, like self development, trainings and therapy.

    I think the idea that reading fiction helps children predict real life outcomes and make links cognitively has something in it, but probably it doesn't go much beyond childhood, as an aid to understanding life. But it may get processes linked up or fire development I suppose, if that's how the brain works?
     
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  12. John M

    John M Well-Known Member V.I.P Member It's My Birthday!

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    I would saying growing up in a very manipulative home and having to sometimes deal with manipulative people due to the nature of my job gave me a certain degree of cognitive empathy. For me, its based on observing patterns of behavior and intuition. I don't know that this is especially helpful but, if people try to manipulate you enough you develop strategies to deal with it. When I was young this meant suppressing my emotions to an extreme. You can't manipulate my feelings if I don't feel them. This made other things very difficult of course but I care a great deal about my autonomy. Sacrifices just had to be made. As I aged I got better at identifying and dealing with manipulative behavior, at least if it involved matters I cared about. I pick my battles because I'm not ever going to be in a position where I can deal with all the manipulation that occurs. Most of its fairly harmless anyway. Deal with the manipulations that you know will cause harm to you and others and ignore the rest.
     
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  13. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I resonate with being nice as it doesn’t occur to me to act otherwise, then I feel resentful.
    You feel others feelings I can tell from your post.
     
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  14. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I believe fiction helps kids as they go characters successes and failures on a visceral level, so they don’t have to experience unnecessary risks, problems, confrontations in real al life as they have already experienced them in books.
     
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  15. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    Blind. Can't read people at all.
     
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  16. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    It sounds as if you read a lot of fiction, am I right?
    I grew up in a manipulative household and met a lot of manipulative people but because I did not mean I was actually manipulated and did not learn how to identify and deal with it. I did not read fiction
     
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  17. Gift2humanity

    Gift2humanity Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I knew a blind girl, her other senses developed to compensate.
    From her wise and mature personality, she may have read a lot of Braille fiction.
     
  18. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    Sadly , l wish to believe the best of people but l now realized that that is a skewed view and is totally useless. But l do find that my customers welcome my authenticity in their life,and l do feel validated in my lifetime.
     
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  19. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    I know I would. Struggling with that beleif myself.
     
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  20. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    Blind in that I can't read people at all. Sorry for not being clear. I read a lot of Sherlock Holmes fiction.
     
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