1. Welcome to Autism Forums, a friendly forum to discuss Aspergers Syndrome, Autism, High Functioning Autism and related conditions.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Private Member only forums for more serious discussions that you may wish to not have guests or search engines access to.
    • Your very own blog. Write about anything you like on your own individual blog.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon! Please also check us out @ https://www.twitter.com/aspiescentral

Featured Do you care what others think of you?

Discussion in 'Friends, Family & Social Skills' started by sisselcakes, Jul 19, 2019.

  1. sisselcakes

    sisselcakes Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    451
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    Karma:
    +431
    I'm an NT and I'm wondering about something. Do you care about what others think of you?

    I'll lay out the scene. As an NT, I'm extremely sensitive to being judged by others. If we don't follow social norms, we feel a very strong internal "cringe" and the desire to just disappear- like a sense of shame. There is a very strong pressure to follow strict social rules, and we experience painful emotions from simply imagining we are being judged by others, even if we aren't treated differently as a result of breaking a norm.

    I realize that people on the spectrum deal with social repercussions if they misread cues or inadvertently do something that isn't socially acceptable (as defined by NT's), so someone with ASD likely deals with others' REACTIONS to their behaviors; but does it matter to you what others THINK of you if it doesn't result in being treated differently?

    I'm curious because I'm always trying to gain more insight into my bf who we believe has Asperger's but isn't formally diagnosed. It's helpful for me to get feedback here because he has trouble explaining his own inner world to me.

    Thanks!
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 6
  2. Isadoorian

    Isadoorian Well Known Chat Member, Welcomer of Newcomers V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,375
    Joined:
    May 16, 2018
    Karma:
    +2,233
    Nope; peoples opinions on myself have little to no impact on my life, so why should I dwell on them? It just means they're judgmental prats and it's the only thing they're good at in life and, funnily enough, it gets them no where.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2019
    • Like Like x 6
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Winner Winner x 1
  3. sisselcakes

    sisselcakes Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    451
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    Karma:
    +431
    I know you aren't speaking for every person on the spectrum, but I'm not surprised by your response. I bet a good number of ASD folks don't care much what others think.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  4. Rectify

    Rectify Active Member

    Messages:
    293
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2018
    Karma:
    +409
    I do care. Within me there is an ongoing struggle between doing things my own way and caring about fitting in. It's a very confusing way to live; the push-pull is maladaptive, I think.

    Sounds like you're asking about this because you feel that your bf doesn't care as much as some people though? People will correct me if I'm wrong but I feel like that will be pretty common for those on the spectrum. I don't think that's a bad thing, either. Just because you don't care what others think of you doesn't mean that you don't still live by your own code or ways.
     
    • Like Like x 3
    • Friendly Friendly x 3
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. sisselcakes

    sisselcakes Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    451
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    Karma:
    +431
    You know, I'm really not sure how my bf thinks in this sense and I will ask him. I suspect he doesn't care as much as I do. He seems to be very comfortable being his own person. He prides himself on not being a "sheep" and being an independent thinker. Yeah, he can be a little arrogant :) I also think he isn't aware of how he comes across to others, so doesn't always pick up on when he does something that has social repercussions. Gosh, I would like to have that freedom; but not to the detriment of relationships of others, I suppose.

    I'm on here reading some posts and came across one that made me wonder about whether or not people care about what people think of them. This may vary quite a bit between different people, independent of aspie or no.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. BraidedPony

    BraidedPony Just Enjoying Survival V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,218
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2018
    Karma:
    +3,592
    I very much care what others think of me, which is the source of my social anxiety.
    But, I have learned to care less.
     
    • Like Like x 6
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  7. sisselcakes

    sisselcakes Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    451
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    Karma:
    +431
    Interesting, so my theory may be wrong! Then again I only have two responses to go on. LOL

    My daughter isn't on the spectrum but she scores pretty high on the AQ. She's also an introvert. She struggles a lot with social anxiety, worried about how she is coming across in a social situation- so much so, that she can't focus on actually interacting.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  8. tlc

    tlc The Mackinac Bridge and U.P. is my happy place.

    Messages:
    1,434
    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2014
    Karma:
    +1,328
    In my younger years I did, even though I did what I wanted which was different than everybody else. I still do my own thing but don't care one bit what others think.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Like Like x 1
  9. SolarPoweredNightOwl

    SolarPoweredNightOwl Walking contradiction

    Messages:
    35
    Joined:
    May 7, 2019
    Karma:
    +123
    The short oversimplified answer is, I don't care what someone thinks of me unless they're one of the rare people I respect and care about.

    The longer answer is, I care in terms of how it may impact me. I learned very young that being different, especially in the "wrong" ways, draws hostility. As an adult, this hostility is much less pronounced, and I'm much more empowered to avoid or overcome it, but it's a factor. More annoyingly, failing to mask and "fit in" to certain groups (coworkers for example) can have consequences. Most of what one wants and needs in the world is most easily attainable through other humans (networking), and even in large cities it tends to be a "small world", so I'm forced to be mindful of others' thoughts of me, my reputation, etc. I prefer to have an idea of what they think and feel, so I can predict how they're likely to act toward me and think through potential difficulties. This is survival, though, not the same as actually caring about or respecting them or their opinions.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Winner Winner x 4
    • Like Like x 2
  10. sisselcakes

    sisselcakes Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    451
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2015
    Karma:
    +431
    Makes sense. The consequences would seem to be of bigger concern; which there certainly can be big ones depending on the social faux pas.
     
  11. Misery

    Misery Photo-Negative V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    912
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2016
    Karma:
    +1,800
    Nah, I have no reason to give a crap. I dont want to hang out with most people in the first place... I'm not interested in watching them get drunk and blather on about politics, which seems to be the primary functions of... almost everyone I've ever met. So I'm not exactly very interested in being accepted into their group. May as well ask me to jump into a pit full of rabid wolverines.

    Hell, I dont even LOOK normal. I'm very aware of this. But... yeah, I dont care.

    On the other hand, I do care what animals think of me, so.... there's that, at least.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Funny Funny x 2
  12. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    3,271
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2018
    Karma:
    +6,432
    Like Solarpowerednightowl said, I only care what a certain few think. As for everyone else, I have trouble even perceiving their opinions of me and I forget immediately any I do perceive. Most people don't really even entirely exist to me, they're just kind of floating around there, making noise sometimes.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Like Like x 3
  13. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    18
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2010
    Karma:
    +33
    I'd like to be more aware of the importance of others opinions, but I got dx'ed too late in life.

    It's good that you help your boyfriend understand these things matter, I never had anyone do that for me.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  14. clg114

    clg114 Still crazy, after all these years. Staff Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    3,573
    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2011
    Karma:
    +6,476
    Except for my family, I do not even think about what others think about me. You see, there are advantages in being a grumpy, old man.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Funny Funny x 1
  15. Running Girl

    Running Girl Member

    Messages:
    62
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2019
    Karma:
    +127
    I am ruled by what others think of me. Thats why i have social anxiety, and probably the biggest reason i wound gravitating to drugs at a young age. Recovery is good, but i still struggle with what others think of me. The biggest reason i dont like work is worrying about being judged, worrying about not fitting in, and the stress of trying to pass for normal.
    I think there are 2 types of people on the spectrum; those who care what people think and those who dont. I truly envy those who dont because they have an easier time (in my opinion).
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  16. Autistamatic

    Autistamatic He's just this guy, you know? V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    2,537
    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2018
    Karma:
    +6,567
    As has already been alluded to above, since social anxiety is a common aspect of autism, and is in large part caused by one's perception of other's opinions, clearly plenty of us care what others think of us. Of course many of us grow up being unable to please anyone, despite our best efforts, so we give up. If we're going to be treated badly, segregated or ostracised, what's the point of caring? It just causes emotional pain we don't need so we turn off the part of us that cares as self defence.

    The other factor to consider is alexithymia, which is present in approximately half of autistics and about 10% of non-autistic people too. If we have difficulty understanding our own feelings, let alone others, we may take a long time just to work out what someone else thinks of us. That may come across as not caring, when in fact it's not knowing.

    Not caring what other people think is not necessarily an autistic trait, but it is definitely something other people can push us to and it is also something which is commonly assumed because we don't react in an expected fashion.

    This is one of those questions which is directly related to double empathy. It may not be so much what we think and feel that is under consideration, as the atypical responses we give being misinterpreted by a recipient inexpert at autistic communication.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Informative Informative x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  17. Fridgemagnetman

    Fridgemagnetman I only have one V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    5,910
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2017
    Karma:
    +11,659
    Theres a guy walks into the pub with a parrot on his shoulder.
    The barman asks 'where did you get that?'
    The parrot replies 'oh, they're walking about all over the place.'

    I am that parrot.

    Quizzical and curious to what the people are doing,what they are thinking.

    Super wary as the people are dangerous.

    They can judge you on a whim,then spread it through confirmatory gossip to create a reality about you, that you know nothing about.
    They can destroy you,as they would swat a fly,without a thought, to bolster themselves temporarily.

    So,yes, I am interested in what people think.

    1. It's often so strange, and I am curious about their social constructions.
    2. I need to make sure I don't make myself to vulnerable to what they can do.

    Because they are walking about all over the place.
     
    • Like Like x 6
    • Agree Agree x 2
  18. Progster

    Progster Gone sideways to the sun V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    5,419
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2014
    Karma:
    +11,360
    I have always been a very independently-minded person, who had their own (alternative) opinions and did their own thing. I was never worried about what people thought of my appearance, or my hobbies, the things I like, things like wearing make-up to look good, fashion, having status symbols like a new car or phone or whatever were never important to me. Unless I had a job interview of course, at which point I became very anxious to appear to be normal, even though there were some things like wearing heels or make-up I simply refuse to do.

    However, when I was in my late teens/early 20s, I was undiagnosed but had to navigate the world of school/uni/work, and a major source of anxiety for me was that I couldn't read people - I had no idea what their mood was, how they were going to react, what they were thinking and found people to be unpredictable. I couldn't easily make friends and could never relax around people. I was having a lot of difficulties and went through a rough patch, and a psychiatrist diagnosed me with social phobia.

    Now that I'm older, I really don't care what other people might think. What I do, what I wear, what I own, what I like, my opinions, are my business and not theirs. It's their problem if they can't deal with a person being different to them or different to the norm. As long as I'm not doing anyone any harm, because I do care about not hurting people or causing people any inconvenience or problems.
     
    • Like Like x 6
    • Winner Winner x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. Baeraad

    Baeraad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    101
    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2019
    Karma:
    +221
    I care an awful lot what people think of me. And people keep telling me not to be so bothered because this, that or the other group doesn't like me, because surely I know better than them what I'm like?

    And the problem is that, er, I really don't, actually! I am a terrible judge of my own character. I can imagine myself being the best person alive. I can imagine myself being the worst person alive. As near as I can tell, the evidence fits both estimations of me equally well. I need an outside perspective to tell me who I am. And that means it hurts terribly when people think ill of me and see me as a bad person, because as far as I know, they're perfectly right.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 3
    • Winner Winner x 1
  20. Dubz

    Dubz Member

    Messages:
    63
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2018
    Karma:
    +138
    Your post honestly makes me believe that so called NTs are pretty much the same as all of us so called Autistics. you truly are the same we. I see no difference here.

    Except an ability to express it?
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1