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

Rule Based Thinking-2 different categories?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Magna, Jul 19, 2021.

  1. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    I was thinking about this recently and had a discussion with a good friend of mine, also autistic.

    In my experience over the years on internet forums and also in talking with fellow autistic people in person it seems that loosely, autistic people either fall into or lean toward one of two rule based ways of operating. I stress loosely because I'm not asserting that my observation is an absolute.

    Internal rules, belief system, etc: In this category, an autistic person is "rule based", but their rules are comprised mainly of personal rules (e.g. routine, ways of doing things, expectations, etc.) They are more inclined to have a personal ideology of which external rules (societal norms, guidelines, laws, public opinion, etc) are compared against. They adhere quite rigidly to the personal ideology and will resist or reject external rules that don't fit or our counter to their personal rules. "Question authority." would be a fitting adage for this group.

    External rule follower: In this category, an autistic person is "rule based", but the rules are generally externally derived. If it's generally accepted to be considered a rule, then an autistic person in this category will likely follow it, because it's a rule. "Obey authority." would be a fitting adage for this group and in my experience autistic people in this category also place a high level of importance on complying with various social rules, public opinion, etc. Compliance rather than non-compliance.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  2. tree

    tree Blue/Green Staff Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    37,962
    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Karma:
    +28,109
  3. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
  4. Progster

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

    Messages:
    6,811
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2014
    Karma:
    +15,082
    I'm more an internal rules kind of person, which is, in part, reponsible for my rigid thinking in some areas. My internal rules are sometimes at odds with social/cultural norms and it can cause me anxiety, stress or conflict. I think it's also possible to be both to varying degrees; if I agree with an external rule, I will accept it, but if I don't agree with a rule, I resist it. In the past, I have had issues with authority over this. I think this applies to NTs as well as autistic people.
     
  5. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    If an external rule is compatible with your internal rule based system, then I'd still consider that as being based on your internal rule system.

    I don't mean that people in the internal rule category would literally reject any external rule (e.g. rule of law, etc). But just as you describe, they apply any external rule against their internal rule based system.

    An external rule autistic person's rule base might be composed primarily of or even exclusively of external rules.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Varzar

    Varzar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    740
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,386
    Doesn't that basically describe everyone?
    I don't know anyone that would follow every external rule always, even if it didn't agree with their own internal rules.
    Or are you suggesting it's whether a majority of your rules are derived from external influences or internal influences? What if someone has a majority of their internal rules happen to match up with external rules?
     
  7. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    Loosely describing the two categories as "Question authority" or "Obey authority" would mean that one would lean toward or be in one category or another. They'd be different from each other rather than being alike.

    Since ABA therapy has a fundamental goal of teaching compliance, I wonder if there's a correlation in the autistic community between autistic people who went through ABA and leaning more toward being an external rule based follower than the opposite.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. PastelPetals

    PastelPetals Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    278
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2020
    Karma:
    +716
    I am internally rule led. That is why I was never one for all behavior modification plans in school and they never worked for me if the rules didn't make sense to me. I have never set off a fire alarm without an actual fire since I am able to assess the outcome and realize it does nothing good for anyone but it never crosses my mind that I should not due to being told not to do it.

    About you aba thing while I was never in the 40 hours a week ABA I can't comment but my life for awhile was full of charts and directions and rewards and punishments. I had to sit down everyday and check in my behaviour had been "expected" or "unexpected" and the goal of everything I did was to make me more compliant. I came out of those years with PTSD but not at all a rule follower even though they were not always mean and gave me candy or time on the computer or praise for doing what I was told.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  9. Neonatal RRT

    Neonatal RRT Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    617
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2020
    Karma:
    +1,714
    Interesting thread.

    I am trying to be introspective here,...and trying to think of ways or situations where I might fit into one or the other category. I don't think I would categorize myself in either of these,...however,...depending upon the specific situation, one might suggest I do. For example, at work or driving down the road,...I am a rule follower. There are specific situations where the consequences of my actions are pertinent. In this situation, my personal freedoms, beliefs, ideals are perceived,...but inconsequential.

    On this forum, I tend to express my thoughts, beliefs, ideals,...but also have been known to elaborate on scientific subject matter,...in which case, my opinion doesn't matter,...I'm simply the messenger. In life,...I am clearly not a "conformer" or "follower" of any political, religious, or social ideas. I often go "against the grain" when it comes to societal norms,...clearly marching to my own drummer. I can intellectualize much of societal norms and why they are the way they are,...but there isn't anything in my brain that would ever interest me in following anyone or being a part of it. I am very much an independent thinker and most people when they get to know me,...becomes very obvious.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Varzar

    Varzar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    740
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,386
    This applies to me as well. I was struggling with how to communicate these thoughts. So thank you @Neonatal RRT for putting it so eloquently.
     
  11. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    5,156
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2018
    Karma:
    +10,848
    I've always automatically resisted authority, and I'm trying to tone that down.
     
  12. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    Caution is still required and "blind faith" can happen relation to science as well. Being the messenger is a fine thing when the scientific data is sound. However scientific data is compiled by people (scientists). When they report the data accurately and without bias, there should be no problem. When they don't, there can be serious problems.

    There was a apparently a lawsuit filed in U.S. federal court just yesterday in the state of Alabama that alleges a government cover-up of injection related U.S. deaths. The lawsuit is apparently based on information reported by a government employee who has federal whistleblower protection.

    If the lawsuit determines that vaccine deaths on VAERS are significantly and purposely underreported and the VAERS data given (ie by scientists) isn't correct then we wouldn't have erred in trusting the data (science), we'd have erred in blindly trusting the "scientists" who would have misrepresented the data as fact.

    I do know there are people out there who believe that if a scientist, doctor, etc tells you something, tells you anything (related to their field), you should believe it with absolute unquestionable faith because "they're smart (related to their field) and the rest of us are not and as such our thoughts on the subject are irrelevant. Sort of a "Believe what all scientists, doctors, etc tell you, because...science." Scientists are people and therefore they can have biases, agendas, motives, etc just like anyone else can.
     
  13. Neonatal RRT

    Neonatal RRT Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    617
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2020
    Karma:
    +1,714
    @Magna I am not going to argue with you on this.

    The VAERS system and any other reporting system, i.e. reporting side effects from pharmaceuticals, etc. is only as good as the forms provided and the rules for reporting. With that, there can be some inaccuracies. A good example is my wife's situation. She is the nurse manager at a rare disease clinic. The patients she manages are on several drugs, they are very brittle in terms of their health, often will have multi-system organ dysfunction. With that known, she is required to report any symptom they have on all the drugs that patient is on,...whether or not any of those drugs or combinations of those drugs are at fault. Pay attention to any of those drug commercials on TV,...listen to all that fast-talking list of potential side effects,...knowing what I know, it is frankly laughable, but they are required by the FDA to disclose these things whether or not that particular drug is in any way responsible for any of those side effects. It is not the reporters that are at fault, but rather the reporting system that they must follow. In order for the reporters to be at fault, there would have to be some sort of mass conspiracy amongst them,...laughing,...most doctors have poor communication with their own partners, let alone some sort of wide spread biased reporting. It would be comical to even suggest it. Furthermore, it is often not the doctors filling out those FDA and CDC forms, but rather a nurse, medical assistant, or secretary of some sort,...the physician simply co-signs.

    However, it's been my observation over the years that the media and, in fact, most people do not understand the scientific process. It is a slow and methodical process of taking an anecdotal observation or association, then over the period of years and multiple experiments involving different situations in order to slowly wittle down and come to a truth. Much of what we know about our world would fall under the category of "emerging truths". What happens all too frequently is that the media jumps onto something way, way too early in the process. Every day you see articles reporting that "scientists say...". Two years later,..."scientists say,..." something that is closer to the truth, but may even contradict what was said two years earlier. I have had personal experience with legitimate news reporters, and have been misquoted. I have seen national news reports do large televised pieces based upon scientific journal articles,...and when you actually read the journal article,...the news piece got it all wrong. I've come to the conclusion that lay people are almost incapable of reading scientific journals, interpreting them correctly, and reporting it accurately. Unless you've been specifically trained upon HOW to read a journal article, it is probably best not act upon, interpret, and report what you've read.

    Distrust in the science and scientists is almost never the fault of either, but rather lay people reporting such findings far too early in the process and/or misinterpreting the data. Furthermore, there are too many "snake oil" salespeople out there,...people with devices, supplements,...fantastical reports of how this or that has been a miracle in their life,...all based upon premature scientific data. Most of it BS. It's no wonder so many have been "burned". A fool and his money are soon separated.

    No one should have "blind faith" in anything that would fall under the category of an "emerging truth". Everyone I have ever met in the medical field is highly skeptical of the data presented to them,...and will read into all the little, nitty-gritty details of any scientific article. Our physicians will sit back and wait at least 10 years before enough data is collected to change their practice,...we are dealing with infants, and these things matter. I don't know of any physician or medical professional that, in practiced conversation, will use strong, direct language, but rather use soft, almost non-committal language ("suggestive", "statistically significant", etc.). Pay attention to your own doctor and the careful words used. Even if there is a 99.9% chance of being correct,...they will leave that 0.1% open to themselves for being wrong. Now,...how the patient, the media, or lay person interprets that conversation is on them, and is their responsibility.

    All that said, all any of us can do as professionals is to follow what is repeatable through experimentation, follow statistics,...even if what we know is only partially true. If you read any good scientific journal article it will almost always say, "more experimentation is needed."...calling upon others to repeat or change variables in order to confirm or further challenge the truth. Jumping upon something too early is almost always a recipe for disaster,...of course, not putting anything to the test is also a recipe for disaster and perpetuates ignorance.

    What I have found is that there is this interesting learning curve when it comes to science and theology. When you are ignorant of the world and how things work, you are more likely to lean upon theology. As you gain more knowledge of how things work, you tend to pull away from theology and more on science, after all, science can explain quite a bit...but here is the interesting part,...the more you truly understand the science and how things work, when you truly become an expert, you've answered so many questions,...the more you tend to think that there is a divine plan. The subatomic and quantum realm tends to suggest an intelligence at work. It's almost as if God has set things in motion, given us the mental tools to understand the physics and chemistry,...but in the end you end up looking upon God again.;)

    The best mentor I have ever had was a neonatologist, that in my opinion, was the best balance of a man of science and God. He taught me so much about what I do, but also as a person, and am forever grateful.

    Peace.:)
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2021
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  14. Varzar

    Varzar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    740
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,386
    It's true that blind faith can happen with science as well, and that is certainly not a good thing.

    But this example of the lawsuit in the US attempting to cast doubt on the science (more than likely for political reasons more than scientific ones) smacks of conspiracy theory. Government coverup to hide the true numbers of deaths due to vaccination?
    Well, can't we just look at numbers from other countries as well? This is going on worldwide after all..
    Canada posts theirs here: COVID-19 vaccine safety: Weekly report on side effects following immunization - Canada.ca
    The UK posts theirs here: Coronavirus vaccine - weekly summary of Yellow Card reporting

    In both cases, their numbers look quite similar to what the CDC is publishing through the VAERS system. So, I guess now it would have to be a multi-government coverup. This starts to sound a lot less probable than the idea this lawsuit was just fabricated for political motivations to me.
     
  15. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    If there is a government whistleblower who has maintained that they're reporting the inaccuracies based on data they've had first hand knowledge of and would, I assume, be under strict penalties if found to be lying, I don't know if I'd consider it a "conspiracy theory" in the sense that the term is used these days.

    I agree with you though that people, groups of people and governments can have political motivations just as they can have financial motivations or other types of motivations.
     
  16. Varzar

    Varzar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    740
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,386
    What sense is it used in these days?

    I usually just go with definitions, like: "A conspiracy theory is an explanation for an event or situation that invokes a conspiracy by sinister and powerful groups, often political in motivation, when other explanations are more probable."
    When people say "government cover-up", that sounds like the definition to me.

    But, I have seen people use the term in situations that it doesn't seem to fit the definition. So, I am curious what the new definition is supposed to be.
     
  17. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    I agree the definition you give is correct and I also agree with you that the term seems to often be overly used to brush aside and dismiss challenges to common narratives on political and scientific issues.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  18. Magna

    Magna Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    1,370
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,950
    Thank you for your post. My intention isn't to misquote you below but to call attention to a few things you've said and which I agree with:

    ^ I completely agree. I can also respect the hesitation some people have for not getting an mRNA vaccine precisely because of the good points you make that I've emphasized here.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  19. Neonatal RRT

    Neonatal RRT Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    617
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2020
    Karma:
    +1,714
    I have to put things into perspective and context when we speak of the vaccines, for example.

    Consider the fact that I am coming from the perspective of a front-line health care worker. It has been emotionally and physically exhausting. The hospital system is in financial trouble. Myself and my co-workers have been on mandatory overtime since last Spring,...and no end in site,...just waiting for the Fall CoVid pandemic to ramp up again, along with the Influenza virus, RSV, and all the other childhood viruses to put children and adults into the hospital. We have lost no less than 30 full-time respiratory therapists and well over 200 nurses just at our hospital alone,...and no one applying. All I see is full beds and no one to take care of people. 99.2% of the people being sick enough to be admitted to the hospital with CoVID are the unvaccinated. 100% of the people dying of CoVID are the unvaccinated. Personally, I cannot help but to think that NOT getting the vaccine and taking appropriate precautions right now is a bit selfish, and is without thinking of the greater good of society. One might say, it is un-American,...anti-patriotic. Perhaps I am selfish in the sense that I just want this all to go away,...I'd even settle for being manageable,...but I have lost hope.

    Coronaviruses have been studied for decades. They are on every viral panel we perform in the hospital and have been for many years. mRNA vaccines have been studied for decades, as well. We could have had a coronavirus and a rhinovirus vaccine many years ago, but it is about money, and given the fact that neither of these viruses typically cause enough illness to kill people (usually common cold symptoms),...with the recent exception of the SARS variants,...there hasn't been a push to market a vaccine. Occasionally, I will hear the argument that the vaccine was produced on an accelerated timeline and not enough study has been done,...well, not so fast with that,...we had the viral genetics mapped out and mRNA vaccine processes already in place. We just had to push the government contracts and fund the project. It is likely the next pandemic,...and there will be,...will be similar in terms of a vaccine timeline.

    As far as the side effects, specifically with blood clots and Guillen-Barre' syndrome,...this has been part of nearly every vaccine,...nothing new here. I learned about this as a student over 30 years ago. If you look at it from a statistical standpoint, these events are statistically insignificant, very rare, and only slightly elevated over the general population that did not get a virus or a vaccine. The news media sure liked to hype it up, though. It's called FUD,...fear, uncertainty, and doubt,...and is a powerful thing.

    But,...like I said, I can only speak from my perspective. Some people I meet have never known anyone that has contracted CoVID and have not witnessed the effects. I can see where this might alter one's perspective and sense of urgency towards getting the vaccine.
     
    • Winner Winner x 2
    • Informative Informative x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Varzar

    Varzar Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

    Messages:
    740
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2019
    Karma:
    +1,386
    Well said as always.. :cool:
    I just wanted to thank you for being one of those putting yourself at risk everyday just to help out others that are already sick. I can't even imagine how hard this last year and a half must've been already for those in your field.
     
    • Like Like x 1