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Mixing up pronouns (and other words) when speaking or typing

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by PastelPetals, Oct 18, 2020.

  1. PastelPetals

    PastelPetals Well-Known Member

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    I tend to mix up pronouns. I and we, he, she, and they, I and you etc. The issue being if offends people (understandably) if I refer to them incorrectly. If I just did it once it would be ok but it happens so often it had become an issue.

    This affects me in speaking and in typing as I touch type but with my brain I type without the words really being in my head unlike when I convert them into words for speech. I end up making the same mistakes as I do speaking and writing with a writing utensil. (Examples include: pronouns mix ups mentioned above, writing down instead of up, mixing up my b, d,p's, and sometimes just typing words I was not trying to say at all (this also happens with speaking))

    Does anyone do this or know how to fix it? I learned tons of words to mask but I still have the same communication difficulties as any other autistic person. The issue being I am blamed harshly due to my assumed competence.
     
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  2. SliverOfSand

    SliverOfSand Active Member

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    I do sometimes mix up pronouns, but it is quite rare for me. What I do have a hard time with is saying or typing words I never meant to say. I think it might have to do with the fact that I have a hard time keeping a focused train of thought, so the words I am thinking get jumbled up with the words I am saying/writing/typing, like you said.

    I think I am the worst in this case in my writing. For example, if I am writing with a pen, I will have multiple mistakes where I can’t even explain why it happened. Why did I write that word there, it doesn’t make sense! Or why did I end these words in ‘e’ when they aren’t supposed to end in ‘e’?

    I feel like my mind is almost too fast and chaotic for my hand to keep up, so I end up just writing nonsense. With typing it’s a bit better, but I have never gotten my speed above 50 wpm consistently, because I make a lot of mistakes, spelling ‘and’ when it’s supposed to be ‘a’, or constantly mixing up the ‘c’ and ‘s’. I’m not sure if this is similar to what you are dealing with, but I found that the only way to deal with it is to really make a conscious effort to slow down my mind, so if I am typing, pronounce every word only as fast as I can type.
     
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  3. Streetwise

    Streetwise very cautious contributor V.I.P Member

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    Not all pronouns there and their are my problem but my whole life should be an advert for tipex (apparently whiteout in the US) or very dark alcohol pens /markers.

    I was never diagnosed with dyslexia but putting this ^ in between words or in the next sentence, was daily if not just is occurrence ,
    But when I write I start to speed like everything and I miss out words.
     
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  4. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I can't do vowels easily and often make spelling errors, because I mistake a vowel and when my husband, in the effort to try and get me to sound spell something, as he won't tell me the spelling, it is painful, because to my brain, e, i, o u sounds similar, when putting in a word.

    My brother has dyslexia and for a long time, refused to use whatsapp, because he felt ashamed at how badly he spelt, but he does use whatsapp now and sometimes, I have no choice but ask what he means, but most often, I can work out what he wanted to say.
     
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  5. Mary Terry

    Mary Terry Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I don't know how common it is to be confused by pronouns, but my nephew does it, too. He struggles with you, I, your, mine, he, she, him, her, they, us, them, his, her, their, etc.
     
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  6. SDRSpark

    SDRSpark Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I do fairly well in writing, but I sound (or at least feel) like an absolute dunce at times speaking. I mix up words, say the completely wrong word, forget the word(s) for a concept that I know well so I have to awkwardly try to explain the thing instead of just saying its name. Sometimes it seems like my brain just grabs a similar word that doesn't really mean the same thing but the brain is like "eh close enough this one will do!" and unfortunately, that means I mix up words like "bought" and "stole" and wind up confessing to crimes I did not commit (that's one particularly embarrassing example that actually happened).

    I also rearrange the words in a sentence, like my brain is moving faster than my mouth can keep up. Or jumble two unrelated sentences together into something utterly nonsensical.

    The worst part of this is that I don't hear the mistake - I hear what I intended to say as opposed to what I actually said. One time in school I was comparing artwork with a classmate. I meant to say "I can't do it quite as well as you can", giving her a compliment. What I actually said was "you can't do it quite as well as I can", insulting her instead. She got offended (of course) and asked me to repeat myself and I said the wrong thing again! And again, I didn't hear myself say the wrong thing - what I heard was what I intended to say.

    That sort of thing used to happen all the time when I was a child, fortunately I seem to have gotten over some of that (or, my flubs are harmless and funny as opposed to insulting). I also used to just blurt things out (no, teacher, I can NOT "think before I speak" because I'm hearing this for the first time as it comes out of my mouth and I'm just as surprised as you are - there was no thought that I had a chance to analyze and make a decision about whether or not to say it. In fact usually, as I'm hearing myself say something, my brain is yelling STOP STOP STOP OMG WTF ARE YOU SAYING STOP!!!) I'm really glad that I seem to have outgrown much of that as well.

    I get names mixed up all the time. Half the time, when I see someone, even someone I've known for years, I have to run through a list of names in my head before I figure out which one is theirs. Of course by the time I complete this, the time for greetings has passed so I wind up just saying something noncommittal like "Hey! How are you doing?" and hope they don't notice I haven't figured out what their name is yet. Or somehow I get a wrong name associated with them (I have a coworker named Terre and for reasons I cannot fathom, my brain was just convinced that his name was Sunny. So every time I saw him I'd call him Sunny. Finally he just started responding "Hey Cher!" when I greeted him by the wrong name. It took me like 6 months to "forget" the wrong name that I had for him. I have no idea why this happens.)

    All this in addition to the usual stuff, like not being able to figure out when it's my turn to speak in a group conversation, auditory processing issues etc.

    Suffice to say I feel pretty inept at in person conversations and I much prefer communicating through text most of the time. Of course that's usually not possible.
     
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  7. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    This all sounds like me. Or l blurt stupid stuff because l am not attached to the moment. Now l mask. And l live in the moment instead of Aspieland.
     
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  8. Au Naturel

    Au Naturel Au Naturel

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    I guess it is politically correct to refer to everyone as they/them because we cannot know for certain how a person self identifies. It is an excuse if you need it.
     
  9. Matthias

    Matthias Well-Known Member

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    I've done that many times. I think it's caused by whatever causes autism.

    I've found that being myself instead of trying to mask every difference helps because people who see odd behaviors from someone are more likely to attribute it to them being odd and not be bothered by it since they're more likely to believe it wasn't intentional.

    To avoid feeling worse when people respond negatively, I remind myself that everyone makes mistakes because no one is perfect. They may not mix up pronouns but if you're around the same people enough you'll realize everyone has flaws.
     
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