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I am so fascinated to read the responses to this question. Is this a common thing? I have a friend on the spectrum (I think—we have never spoken of it) and I often compliment him. I mean what I say sincerely and I don’t think he has many people around to praise or compliment him, so I assumed that my comments are welcome, but maybe they aren’t? He rarely responds and it’s like he freezes up. I don’t think he dislikes being complimented necessarily but I don’t know. I think maybe he just doesn’t know how to respond, as some have mentioned. Once I even said to him “The appropriate response to a compliment is thank you!” But it was online so I don’t know how he responded to or processed that.

For those of you who hate to be complimented, can I ask why? How does it make you feel? Do you even hate to be complimented by someone you know well/trust who might be speaking sincerely? Should I ask my friend directly if compliments make him uncomfortable? I would hate to think what I interpret as a kindness toward him is received negatively.
He rarely responds and it’s like he freezes up. I don’t think he dislikes being complimented necessarily but I don’t know. I think maybe he just doesn’t know how to respond
I don't know your friend, so my comments here are based on how I feel. People on the spectrum are not a 'one size fits all', so for him it might be different, but yes, that's probably what is happening. It might be overwhelming, or make him feel embarrassed/awkward.

Once I even said to him “The appropriate response to a compliment is thank you!”
That wasn't a good thing to say. You might have meant well, but ito him, it might have sounded like criticism. If someone said that to me, it would have taken me by surprise and make me feel very bad. I'd probably spend ages afterwards analysing it. It's best not to say anything, let it go and carry on the conversation as if nothing happened. You shouldn't force this kind of interaction on him, or pass comment when he doesn't give you the 'socially correct' response you were expecting.

For those of you who hate to be complimented, can I ask why? How does it make you feel?
For the reasons mentioned above - I don't know how to respond, it makes me feel awkward/exposed and I never know if the compliment is sincere or not. In some circumstances, they can be overwhelming, too personal and even come across as creepy.

Do you even hate to be complimented by someone you know well/trust who might be speaking sincerely?
If the compliment is from a person I feel at ease with and who I know is likely to be sincere, it is better. But I don't know when a person is being sincere and when a person is telling a 'white lie' - I rarely make compliments (though I praise achievement) and prefer not to receive them. It might help if you tell him that your compliment is sincere. Or just not make compliments.

Should I ask my friend directly if compliments make him uncomfortable?
Perhaps - though judging by what you said, it seems that they do - obviously, you should avoid things that make him uncomfortable. Most people on the spectrum prefer directness - say waht you mean and mean what you say.
Too often I find that compliments are partly negative

Wow... I understand this one... "Chance buddy you did great BUT! ___________" There always seems to be that "BUT"in there.

I keep thinking "why are you lying to me
I do this also... I think I lost such trust in people as a kid that I cant see past the fact that maybe they really are trying to be nice to me, or they are maybe lying to me... It sucks at best.

For those of you who hate to be complimented, can I ask why? How does it make you feel?

I think I just have a real hard time processing it. My past clashes horribly with it. My present battles want to accept them, but so many times they have been double edged mental swords that also rip my heart out... "Compliments" somehow cross over into jabs, and little bits of things that eat at my thoughts... If I go out and win a race fair and square... Or IF I knock a baseball over the fence...

Thats cool, I can accept that on my own terms, I did something that even amazed myself. But, if I maybe just work real hard and try my best, and someone compliments me... I look back at what i could have done better, or I question myself on their compliment... Did they really mean that or do they feel sorry for me? Its a twisted cage... So many times compliments were doorways to cutdowns... I think it all goes back to me not trusting ANYONE basically.

Then I sit around worrying over that. ASD is wow... Sometimes at best controlled insanity. : )
Just pondering on this "giving compliment" thing and what comes to mind is when we have a sense of we must say thank you or the person giving the compliment expects to be thanked, in that way, it shows that they ie the complimentor wants to be acknowledged and thinks it rude if silence followers.

I base this on the fact that I give compliments too and like to be thanked. One thing I strive for is to never be hypocritical, so if I never gave a compliment, then yes, I probably would wonder why anyone would to me.

But I get why nts see it as normal to be thanked. But I also have been there with feeling picked on, because I have not adapted to the social norm.
I think maybe he just doesn’t know how to respond, as some have mentioned. Once I even said to him “The appropriate response to a compliment is thank you!” But it was online so I don’t know how he responded to or processed that.

My guess is you are right... I often nearly lock down in situations where a "forced response" is sort of demanded... I don't mean too. I just can fit what I feel which is UNCERTAINTY, with what I feel someone is wanting me to say...

In my head I am trying to find an end to this word and emotion game that I suck at.

Its not that it anyones fault, and that is maybe what makes it all so weird... I don't think anyone is consciously just wanting to be non-compliant, or rude... There is just lots of unseen confusion on my end that I am trying to hide all this time, in the mix also. : )
I find being judged just by external appearance quiet tiresome if not frustrating. Due to some events I always find it rather alarming, especially coming from the opposite gender.

I think that it mostly come from the desire of being noticed but left to my own devices - as in being noticed only by those that are important to me. When you're complimented, you become a center of attention and I prefer going 'under the radar' most of the times. It can also make it harder to act when the fight-or-run response is needed.
Too often I find that compliments are partly negative. Compliment- criticism- compliment. The are wrapped around criticism so it rather makes them insincere. Unfortunately it takes me a while to decode this kind of double speak so I rarely get to respond in a timely fashion.
Wow! Soooo true! Inever thought of this but it is crucial in terms of safety. People don't random ly compliment others without reason. Not being cynical! It is true
Thanks for the responses. They are really incredibly helpful. When I give a compliment I don't always expect a thank you. In fact I normally don't; I give the compliment because I want the person to know I appreciate or admire or like something about them. However, in the instance I mention where I got frustrated and told him he should say thank you, it was in fact a comment about this person's physical appearance, so it's very interesting to know that this subject in particular makes some people especially uncomfortable. This person seems to put a lot of effort into his physical appearance and is just "into" people's physical appearances generally (clothes, physique, athletic abilities, etc) and very fastidious about his own. It just seems like someone who puts a great deal of effort into his appearance and staying fit, and who on occasion has shown pride in himself for these things, would want to be acknowledged for it. It's counter-intuitive, at least to an NT, that he would not, especially since in some instances it even seems like he is seeking praise. Once he even asked me if I was proud of him for something. For this particular person I tend to think he actually likes it, but doesn't know how to react, so he simply doesn't. Does anyone like receiving compliments but simply not respond because you don't know what to say? Or you freeze up even though you appreciate the compliment?

Also, so you might understand a little more about the other side of the coin, when someone gives a compliment and is not acknowledged, it can be embarrassing, especially with regard to physical attraction. To say someone is attractive requires some nerve and a little risk, and if the receiver doesn't seem pleased, it can make the other person feel humiliated, and they may in turn react badly. Not that this is an excuse or changes anything, but it's worth mentioning I think. To compliment someone and not receive any feedback is also a little dose of rejection.

On a related note, this person will tell me about accomplishments. He will tell me when he does something of which he is proud, like professional achievements. I assume he does this because he wants and appreciates some kind of recognition, which I gladly and sincerely give. It's so very confusing to think that maybe I should say nothing at all in response(?). As in, why does he tell me if he doesn't want a response or some acknowledgement? On the flip side, if I ever tell him about any accomplishment of mine, he completely ignores it.
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I have been giving, very sincerely, what I consider positive feedback about himself to my "aspie" friend. I don't think of it in terms of complimenting him. I do it because I truly mean what I say and feel he needs to know since most of his feedback his whole life has been negative and rejecting. He usually responds with either an "XD" or an ":D". I have never criticized him, there has never been any need to do so. I surely hope he doesn't feel I'm trying to be manipulative or that I'm making him uncomfortable- neither has ever been my intention. But I think he knows me very well by now as I have always been very transparent and expressive about my feelings towards him. So hopefully I haven't done any damage here! (FYI, I don't give compliments very often and when I do I mean them with all my heart.)
Learning how to accept a compliment was really hard for me. I've learned, though. It's a lot easier for me to accept a compliment for something I do, than it is for something I am.
So when someone tells me "you're a good teacher" or "you're a thoughtful friend" I am genuinely happy and able to show it. When someone tells me "you're pretty" or "you're smart" it makes me feel a little awkward, because that's something I don't necessarily have any influence on, therefore it feels like a rather pointless statement to me.
I never had that problem. The biggest perception strangers had of me was wherever we were, I looked to them like I worked there. People often asking me where things were, even lines forming to speak to me. In full dress uniform traveling I had people think I was the pilot, or the skycap that takes your bags. :D

But as far as it goes, I would just develop a set of stock answers that acknowledge the compliment but also don't continue to the discussion. Kinda just say thanks and let it die there as far as you are concerned. If its a non threatening person it may be good to return the compliment (if possible) and change the subject to them.
I have had issues with this as well and I suppose because it's hard for me to judge the real intent behind it. I don't think every compliment is insincere but I might tend to think someone is being insincere or just be really unsure, and in my quandary I might come across as rude.
I did a search on this topic because I didn't want to make a new post of something already talked about:

When people compliment me I don't usually believe them and as much as I appreciate it, it makes me uncomfortable. However, I compliment other people all the time? I am just a very enthusiastic person so when someone shows me something they've made or they are being really nice to me I exclaim "You're so nice!" or "This is so cool!!!"

Now I feel a bit paranoid I might have made my Aspie friends uncomfortable.
I don't mind compliments, but at the same time I can't help but question the sincerity of them. Too often I've been complimented on something only to have it be a precursor to something sinister.

Yep. Sentiments that Eddie Haskell put into my mind a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. :eek:
I feel both embarrassed and flattered by compliments, depending. But usually even if a compliment is just a precursor to "okay this is what I want from you" I still appreciate it because the factual content of the compliment is usually true, regardless of intent. In fact, if someone were using a compliment for manipulative purposes, it would behoove them to say something that's true and believable. So in that way and for that reason, I always take compliments as being sincere, regardless of what their social purpose is, and I appreciate them.
I used to be quite touchy about compliments about my looks, in particular my hair colour, because certain grown-ups would follow it with "I suppose you have all the men chasing after you!" No, I never have.
As I grow older, I'm becoming more and more interested in beauty and fashion. So naturally I'd like to called beautiful, right? No. I hate people calling me pretty (with the exception of good friends), I don't know why it makes me massively uncomfortable, which sucks because older women love to call me cute and pretty all the time and makes me really embarrassed. Do you feel the same? This is such a weird topic but i gotta wonder if it relates to autism or not.

Compliments are given mostly when someone genuinely feels and mean what they say be it on looks, behaviour, dressing sense and so on.

And it feels good to hear when people have good things to say about you and in return when we appreciate and compliment them , they too feel happy about themselves .

And who in the world wouldn't like to receive compliments?? I doubt if there is anyone out there who doesn't.
I generally get very weird with compliments. I don't understand how to respond and I usually don't respond. I do realise it can be percieved as rude and a lot of people are put off by it. It also depends on the compliment I recieve.

"You're beautiful"
- I had no active part do with the fact that you find me beautiful. I am not responsible for the outcome of my genetic mix.

"Your hair looks nice today."
- Thank you. I decided to change it a bit today.

Both of these make me feel awkward and self-conscious, but the first one I really can't respond to.

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