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Featured Do you ever go non-verbal or semi-verbal?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Full Steam, Oct 10, 2017.

  1. No

    6 vote(s)
    14.3%
  2. Semi Verbal

    8 vote(s)
    19.0%
  3. Non-verbal

    6 vote(s)
    14.3%
  4. Both

    22 vote(s)
    52.4%
  1. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    For some reason the idea that I might only recently occurred to me, so i did the usual and studied my behaviour, and my past.

    I can now see that I go semi-verbal quite often. Shutdowns always cause it to an extent and so does exhaustion, and stress.

    The only non-verbal episodes I remember were in play ground fights. They always started with a shouting match, that turned to insults and threats and then physical.

    As soon as the threats started I stopped speaking, and literally could not have spoken.
     
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  2. onlything

    onlything Gathering pieces V.I.P Member

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    Selective mutism is rather common in ASD. I think it's one of the coping mechanisms. Just like you said, I go into semi-mute mode very often whenever I feel a bit overhelmed. When it turns into full-blown sensory/emotional overload, I go fully non-verbal and can't talk for some time.
     
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  3. WereBear

    WereBear License to Weird V.I.P Member

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    One night I was worn out and clumsy and managed to squirt soap in my eye while washing up for bed. Poor husband had to figure out why I was crying, because all I could say was “Soap!”
     
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  4. isthisreallife

    isthisreallife Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    The first thing I always lose is speech. It's like my brain has to toss something aside to deal with everything else that's going on in there. I also lose the ability to comprehend words, it's awful when it happens at work because people get frustrated with me, and then I just get more panicked.
     
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  5. OkRad

    OkRad Well-Known Member

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    This happens to me, too. Or I do it. I think I choose it because it calms my brain . It is very effective in shutting our sensory overload when you can't stop any of the outside stuff
     
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  6. Gritches

    Gritches Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I was in a minor car accident a little while ago. Nobody got seriously hurt, but I was rattled. When I get rattled like that I go non-verbal, and I think by "rattled" I mean an episode of some trauma.

    Thank God I had a card with me that explained that I had ASD with my Dad's phone number.

    Also, thank God the other car had a bumper sticker from the local pot shop instead of an NRA bumper sticker, so they were cool about it.

    But yes, even as a kid I'd go totally non-verbal when the yelling started. I was smarter than I was wise so I could really strike a nerve and get pretty much any NT adult red-faced and screaming at me, so it happened a lot.

    By far, the primary and worst feeling associated with this phenomenon is the helplessness and frustration. Wanting to speak but not being able to make the words come out. *shiver*
     
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  7. Chance

    Chance "all who wander are not lost" - Tolkien V.I.P Member

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    I'm a motor mouth on here... Sorry but its how I let stuff out.
    In real life very very quiet always, but most the time with a semi-smile.
    I try not to look all grumpy because I am accused of always looking upset - that makes me upset.

    When stuff gets crazy... Some one starts ramping up the drama or screaming... I go into silent mode.
    Sometimes it gets me in a little trouble, because people expect me to say something and I sometimes am just trying to figure out how to get out of that situation before I implode.
     
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  8. Sherlock77

    Sherlock77 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I'm not entirely sure how non-verbal is defined here, but I really don't recall any times of having an experience like that...
     
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  9. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    For me non-verbal would mean unable to speak at all - I doubt any threat would get me to speak then, but I can act 100% normally (for me), and in my above examples, I could fight fine and was hyper aware of everything around me.

    Semi-verbal for me would mean that I feel a physical seeming difficulty in forming and thinking words. They gradually dry up until I can barely say anything, and at that point I'm just trying to get away.
     
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  10. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Well-Known Member

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    If you mean having words in your mind but being unable/partly-unable to speak them, no, I don't think so -- I do get a stutter and it takes longer for the brain-to-mouth transmission to happen when I'm stressed out but I can still speak.

    If you mean not speaking because you have no words in your mind, or words but not ones that can be coherenly strung together, then yes.
     
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  11. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    the first thing I notice is it's harder to think of the right word, then my vocabulary seems to reduce until I can't think of anything to say at all. At the same time it becomes harder to mouth the words and I might start slurring a little.
     
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  12. Chance

    Chance "all who wander are not lost" - Tolkien V.I.P Member

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    In my case... I go basically involuntary silent when I get hyper aware, too much input (sensory overload), I usually tremble (sometimes visibly), words just get all jumbled and if I can speak Tourettes kicks in words get really stuck and drag out. Its not a good thing...

    Semi-silent is basically just my normal way of life. I just learned its safer that way.
     
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  13. kay

    kay Well-Known Member

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    I have only had a couple of times that I couldn't speak at all that I can think of. I could write, but just couldn't get sound out. It was when I was super stressed for quite a long time and I guess something in my brain had to go out and that's what it was. Most of the time I either talk too much or in some stressful, noisy, social situations I might sorta be semi-verbal, but not sure. I don't say anything, I'm just blank. I suppose I could get sound out but I have no words pop into my head to speak. There might be a little social anxiety in the mix in those situations rather than just pure stress. It seems those moments are reserved for a rather specific type of situation. But, mostly I talk way too much and sorta rattle away.
     
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  14. Warmheart

    Warmheart Something nerdy this way comes Staff Member V.I.P Member

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    Actually, the iPad mini I use for this forum is my communication device when I can't speak. I'm verbal much of the time--because I'm at home. ;) Out in community, a dash of sensory hoopla, some cognitive processing flub-ups, and social energy drain leads to abrupt non-verbal shutdowns in any sort of stress.

    I use TalkTablet app if I need to do an interview, ask for directions, etc.

    The furry guy in my avatar is trained both in a german, as well as hand signals.

    Lots of mainly verbal autistic adults use an AAC (Assistive and Augmentative Communication) device. Using supports doesn't make us wimpy, it allows us to go farther than we could without those supports in place.
     
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  15. Sherlock77

    Sherlock77 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Can't say I ever go entirely silent... I do have a tendency towards non-verbal communication, most often I use a nod of the head... And depending on the situation often use a nod of the head, but that is not my reaction to stress, just the way I am...
     
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  16. pax

    pax Well-Known Member

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    I voted yes both. Typically when under stress, or when someone is yelling at me.
     
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  17. Amy Susan Rose

    Amy Susan Rose Mitakuye Oyasin

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    I can certainly relate but also when overwhelmed with distractions or with people I'm not accustomed to my mind goes totally blank---shuts down; not only unable to communicate efficiently but unable to remember anything regarding what people are asking me. Example: my grandson's mother came to pick up my grandson and she had her two little girls with her (from another relationship). There was so much noise and distraction that when she asked me if he had a nap I couldn't remember at the moment and just said yes. After they left I had no problem recalling that he did indeed have a nap. This was not an isolated incident for it has happened before when asked something simple when I'm distracted and overwhelmed with my environment. I believe too that was why I spent my childhood practically as a full-time mute person; dysfunctional households certainly can do this to one on the Spectrum, especially back in the day when ADS was not recognized. Though autism was known about I was way too high functioning to be considered thus. So growing up I was considered the shy one, the quiet one, and of course my favorite, "she marches to the beat of a different drummer."
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
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  18. Full Steam

    Full Steam Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I do that too - I have to guess about what's in my memory but not instantly retrievable. Hadn't thought of that before.
     
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  19. megacomic

    megacomic Just that awkward guy.

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    I don't speak unless my words serve a purpose.
     
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  20. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Often!

    To add: if someone asks me a question and it is one that I know is to compromise me, my mind goes completely blank.

    If I am asked what do I like etc? My mind goes completely blank.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2017
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