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Featured How would you calm down when feeling criticized as "having attitudes"?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by BlueSky Aozora, Apr 7, 2021.

  1. BlueSky Aozora

    BlueSky Aozora Well-Known Member

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    (I'm not sure whether I'm aspie/autistic or not, but I feel I'm weird compared to other colleagues).

    Sometimes at work or in the internet, there are some things I found inefficient, or just plain curious to know about it. So, I sometimes ask stupid questions or voice out blunt opinions, which might be perceived as "negativity" or "having attitudes".

    But I'm just asking, or saying my opinion. Maybe there's better wording to my words, or I should've kept quiet. But also my job to take those seriously so that's why I'm asking/voicing out - heck why would I spend my energy to participate and think deeply about those.

    Although not addressed to me, the leader even said, "Better leave than having attitudes because it's disrupting the organization" - something like that.

    Is voicing out unconventional opinions bluntly considered as "having attitudes"? Sure, I could've word my questions/opinions better, but I dont automatically know how, it takes time, inefficient - why not people just go straight to the point, politely? Some people even being rude in response to my question - I didn't ask rudely even.

    How you cope with this anger inside your heart, when feeling criticized like this (although they didn't actually criticize you)?

    I know they didnt actually criticize me, but this makes me feel like an outcast when I'm doing my best to take these trivial tasks they've given me seriously.
    I feel like I shouldn't have even participated, or just ignore these unimportant tasks. I know normal people wouldve handled it a lot easier.

    But it's not like I can refuse because I feel like they will respond "everybody has even more and bigger responsibilities than your trivial worry". I know it's all just in my head, they dont even give a crap, which made me feel crappier..
     
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  2. Misery

    Misery Photo-Negative V.I.P Member

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    When it happens, ask ANOTHER question: "I genuinely was just asking a question to understand stuff better.... I dont mean to come across as negative... can you tell me what I said to make you think that? I'm only trying to learn, that's all".

    Though also yes, sometimes just being blunt and straightforward can come across to some people as rude/angry/mean/negative. I think it's that bizarre innate programming that requires things like small talk or unnecessary comments or fake smiles and whatever. You cant just go in a straight line with some people, you gotta do a drunken wobble and run circles around a mountain and then jump over a lake and THEN you can get to your destination without them punching you verbally.

    You wanna see a really wild and bloody stupid phenomenon? A science experiment for you: Take the SAME EXACT QUESTIONS you'd normally ask in these situations, but instead of asking them in person, ask them via email. Just watch what happens. Chances are, you'll get a perfectly polite response that actually answers you.

    When the conversation is in person is when that nonsensical innate programming REALLY kicks in.

    Frankly I tired of this stuff long ago. Like, I'm being perfectly polite and calm, just answer my blasted questions, or I will GET negative, and then you'll know the difference, as will everyone in hearing range. I mean, really. People can be so irritating with this nonsense.


    Of course, that's all with QUESTIONS.

    OPINIONS are different. People really, really, REALLY dont like having their opinions challenged. They must be right at all times, you see. Even moreso if that person is a manager. Because then you, the lowly worker, must be questioning their competence. They dont want to feel inadequate, after all. They must feel like they are at the top. But that goes for even non-managers or non-work situations. People dont want to be WRONG.

    You could be merely trying to improve things, and they WILL still see it that way. No, I dont know why. But always be careful with opinions... even in emails.
     
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  3. Major Tom

    Major Tom Searching for ground control... V.I.P Member

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    Keep asking questions and voicing how you see things can improve. That's the only way you learn and also the only way the world can change for the better.

    If nobody asked questions or voices their opinions about how things could improve, we never would have evolved into what we have become today. (Which I find both beautiful and ugly all at once).
     
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  4. Thinx

    Thinx Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I am walking a line here between wanting to validate you and your honesty and efficiency and yet also say, because we are not typical in this it is often understood as having agendas, such as, I don't need to soften how I say this, because I am better than you, or whatever this behaviour may represent to the neurotypical people. They then feel offended or upset, because the emotional message comes through the loudest to the neurotypical people.

    This does mean, in my work experience, we have to adhere to their customs, through which they discern if we and others are well meaning. Wow, interesting ideas everyone, I am liking this discussion! My idea is a bit different though, but hear me out as I think it's potentially very efficient and workable.... etc.
     
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  5. Major Tom

    Major Tom Searching for ground control... V.I.P Member

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    You are most likely correct, but I feel we need more revolutionaries to make things better. If we all just do what's expected the world is going to turn into a big fat turd, probably in our lifetimes.

    I guess you have to weigh out security with what is right. I almost always go with what is right and be damned the consequences unless it's something that can effect my family negatively.

    "The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing." Albert Einstein
     
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  6. Progster

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

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    Sometimes, when people get upset over something that has been said that is not something obviously offensive, it's the tone of voice and the intention behind that tone of voice that they are interpreting and judging. Get the tone of voice slightly off, and they can think all sorts of things that you don't intend - that you're being sarcastic, passive-aggressive, arrogant or whatever. And it's difficult to get right; when I speak, I really have no idea of how I sound to others and how I come across - it's something that happens to me and which I find difficult, so I communicate in writing as much as I can, try to smile, say please, thank you, etc.
     
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  7. Raggamuffin

    Raggamuffin Well-Known Member

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    I have lost count of the amount of times I say something and I'm told to "stop being angry" or "there's no need to shout." What I consider normal behaviour or responses is met with rather condescending remarks. It's ironic that I wasn't angry before I was told to "stop being angry" but after the words left their mouth, I'm now absolutely furious. I suppose it's a case of someone overreacting and me responding in kind.

    I bottle it up the anger though - and it feels very uncomfortable, but I know from past experiences that unleashing angry rants provide no positive conclusions. If you're angry - you're unsettled, and you make witnesses to your behaviour feel unsettled as well. If anything, bottling it up keeps the peace for those around you - even if inside it feels like you're poisoning yourself with all this negativity. It's just another form of masking at the end of the day.

    Feeling criticized is very painful and often feels overwhelming. It clouds your thoughts and your judgement and you feel hard done by, and cheated. I think what counts is how quickly you calm down. You might instinctively react to criticism with internal outrage, but the sooner you talk yourself down, the quicker it will pass. I find that looking back, I see my overreactions for what they were - heat of the moment emotions that don't portray me in a good light.

    If someone criticizes you - and you react with anger, you're just giving them more reasons to be critical towards you. It might seem a little backwards, but I find being nice to people who aren't pleasant is a better way to live your life.

    With regards to wanting to avoid participating or ignoring things - this will only reinforce negative thinking with regards to socialising. The more you convince yourself it's pointless, or not worth your timne which could lead to socialising being even more problematic.

    I've shared this list with a few of my friends who are on the spectrum, they could relate to it a lot, perhaps you can too. It's a list of unhelpful though processes associated with depression and anxiety:


    1. ALL-OR-NOTHING THINKING: You see things in black-and-white categories. If your performance falls short of perfect, you see yourself as a total failure.

    2. OVERGENERALIZATION: You see a single negative event as a never-ending pattern of defeat.

    3. MENTAL FILTER: You pick out a single negative detail and dwell on it exclusively so that your vision of all reality becomes darkened, like the drop of ink that colors the entire beaker of water.

    4. DISQUALIFYING THE POSITIVE: You reject positive experiences by insisting they “don’t count” for some reason or other. In this way you can maintain a negative belief that is contradicted by your everyday experiences.

    5. JUMPING TO CONCLUSIONS: You make a negative interpretation even though there are no definite facts that convincingly support your conclusion. a. Mind reading. You arbitrarily conclude that someone is reacting negatively to you, and you don’t bother to check this out. b. The Fortune Teller Error. You anticipate that things will turn out badly, and you feel convinced that your prediction is an already-established fact.

    6. MAGNIFICATION (CATASTROPHIZING) OR MINIMIZATION: You exaggerate the importance of things (such as your goof-up or someone else’s achievement), or you inappropriately shrink things until they appear tiny (your own desirable qualities or the other fellow’s imperfections). This is also called the “binocular trick.”

    7. EMOTIONAL REASONING: You assume that your negative emotions necessarily reflect the way things really are: “I feel it, therefore it must be true.”

    8. SHOULD STATEMENTS: You try to motivate yourself with shoulds and shouldn’ts, as if you had to be whipped and punished before you could be expected to do anything. “Musts” and “oughts” are also offenders. The emotional consequence is guilt. When you direct should statements toward others, you feel anger, frustration, and resentment.

    9. LABELING AND MISLABELING: This is an extreme form of overgeneralization. Instead of describing your error, you attach a negative label to yourself: “I’m a loser.” When someone else’s behavior rubs you the wrong way, you attach a negative label to him: “He’s a goddam louse.” Mislabeling involves describing an event with language that is highly colored and emotionally loaded.

    10. PERSONALIZATION: You see yourself as me cause of some negative external event which in fact you were not primarily responsible for.”


    Ed
     
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  8. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I remember I dislike hyperventilating more than I dislike a person's judgement of me
     
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  9. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    When l ask questions, l have learned to ask very carefully with words that don't trigger people. So would mind repeating that, and how would that work in this situation? Not sure exactly what you mean...... when l may know perfectly well what they mean but l need more clarification. So l avoid stating my opinion because it seems to go counter to asking questions. Other times, l may state, this may seem stupid to ask, but what was the real reason behind x, y and z? Evoke a little sympathy to get an answer. In the world of ego dominated NTs, you have to step lightly.
     
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  10. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    @The Pandector I think you were rude to think my comment was funny
     
  11. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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  12. The Pandector

    The Pandector Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    This is very sad. I normally read on my ipad, but got out of bed to respond from my desk to something I just saw in your profile. You said you would no longer be a part of this forum because you are unwanted. I came to my desk to dissuade you from leaving, but you had left this post in the meantime. I had intended to say so in a private message, but you have taken it public, which I am OK with.

    Maybe you think that I, for one, don't want you here because we had a 'dispute' over a public statement you made which clearly denigrated NT/ND marriages. But this is not at all the case. In fact, since then I have taken an extra interest in you, and not at all in a negative way. I want to be your friend.

    As for my 'rude' response... Looking back at it, I still would take your post to be a wry--maybe an ironically humorous--commentary on life as an autistic person. I know that my own words are often taken wrongly, and as an autistic person maybe you have seen this before in your life.

    I am saddened by your pique, but have a policy against insincere apologies. @Streetwise, you were exceedingly rude to publicly denigrate my lifelong marriage, and at that time you declined to acknowledge your rudeness. That's OK with me; I still want to be your friend. Now you publicly label me negatively because I took your remark to be wry. Maybe a simple 'I wasn't joking' would have served the purpose?

    I certainly did not intend to offend; my intention was to acknowledge my appreciation of the slant you put on your comment. I hope you will not leave this forum and that we will someday lol together about these early misunderstandings.

    That would be win-win.
     
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  13. Wolfsage

    Wolfsage In training to be Wolf King.

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    I quit careing and keep asking questions. They either figure it out or ignore me. I can push it to far. But, I'm asking more for "their" benefit then my own. Usually so I don't mess up. Which I can do on a clossal scale. Compared to that I prefer being considered a nusiance. Also I have this Batman intimidation thinking. "You WILL give me the answer!"
     
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  14. Nervous Rex

    Nervous Rex High-functioning autistic V.I.P Member

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    The bad reaction may not be due to you asking questions, but due to the way you ask them - bluntly.

    Several years ago, I realized that people were responding very negatively to what I thought were honest and well-intentioned questions or comments. I realized that it's because my default, monotone voice sounds angry.

    I have put a lot of work into making my voice sound more "cheerful" and into phrasing questions as politely as possible. That doesn't mean I sound obsequious or sycophantic - I try to sound polite and cheerful.

    I've gotten a lot better reactions to my questions and comments since then.


    I'm guessing that most people on this forum will read this and ask, "But why do I have to change the way I talk, just to get a better reaction? Why can't they adapt?" Maybe they can, maybe they can't. I'm willing to do what I can to make things run better for me. I could also tell people, "My default voice sounds angry - please don't assume I'm angry if I forget to deliberately add cheerful words and tones." Then we could meet halfway.
     
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  15. Skittlebisquit

    Skittlebisquit Hope is faith rewarded in advance

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    Thanks Ed, that one is going up on the wall
     
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  16. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

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    It depends on what you're saying and how you're saying it.
     
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  17. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I wasn't saying only your marriage, I was pointing out what happens every! time !a NT posts on this forum ,their post always happens because they see a difference as negative ,I'm not going to say it was rude, I apologise if I hurt you ,but it was true ,I sadly keep thinking one day they (NT's) will not think they are superior a desperate hope
     
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  18. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Very hard to achieve and I fail more than I succeed in keeping back my anger.

    The problem is that many neurotypicals like to be "pampered" with words and thus, we come along and say it how it is and get a disgusted response. I get: you are so cold. You lack empathy. How can you be so cruel? All because I suggest that is how a person is REALLY thinking.

    I know someone who has cancer, but due to very sensitive intestinal issues, was denied chemo, which I laugh at because, when someone has cancer, they are already highly compromised and yet, given such harsh treatment? Anyway, a few I know also agree, that it is a positive thing that this person cannot have chemo. As she has been through it once and the cancer came back.

    Well, she is REFUSING to try natural therapy and is getting a LOT of love an attention, so I said to my husband that just perhaps she is secretly not wanting to get better, so she can bask in the attention and the response was: how could you say such a nasty thing about this person?! I did not say that is how she is thinking, because I am not a diety who can read someone's mind from far off. I was just throwing a HAHA in the air, to my husband, but it did not go down so well.

    It is very hard to not voice opinions, but I am having to learn to "button my mouth".
     
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  19. The Pandector

    The Pandector Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Thank you, @Streetwise. I have to agree with your observation...
    And isn't that the story of the broad human experience? If I may opine...

    The Lord built diversity into the human race, so that all may benefit from each expression of the human spirit. At the same time, he created us as social beings who are hooked together by some very intricate social instincts.

    Prime in that social instinct is conformity. Conformity keeps the social train on the track. This means differences draw attention. And it only makes sense that, whether lovingly or not, difference is 'corrected' in order to keep the train rolling. What seems to need some major corrections is in how we determine which difference is tolerable and which is not.

    I believe that, in part, my own marriage endured the test of time because we both made that determination very consciously. Regarding the world at large, I share and work towards your desperate hope.
     
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  20. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    No if we cherish uniqueness instead of only noting the largest percentage decisions ,opinions,as Kathryn kuhlman said now can you see why G-d repented about creating man ,when a gentlemen still wouldn't believe he was healed even when he wasn't in pain