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Featured Small talk

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by CK1977, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. CK1977

    CK1977 Active Member

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    I really don't like small talk. I find it hard to understand exactly what they want in an answer. Personally, I find that it seems that the response they want is an insincere one. It is kind of like asking someone if they like your cooking and they say, "yes" but really they can't stand it. Maybe there is a reason for this. Maybe it helps to say something less truthful so the other person doesn't feel damaged by the whole truth. The question is how do strike a balance? I really don't like being fake because for of my life, I have lived a lie. I am like a chameleon. I really don't like standing out but it seems no matter what I will, so I must embrace it. How do you give a little during small talk, without losing your identity in the process?
     
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  2. Guppyfry

    Guppyfry Well-Known Member

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    I completely agree - the NT social world is based on highly stylized formal exchanges, set up to look informal and spontaneous. I don't think that people realize just how much of a script they are alway following.

    I hate small talk too - what a waste of inner energy.
     
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  3. Tanya

    Tanya spirit gardener

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    Yeah I don't want to be a fake either. Like you said Guppyfry, people seem to be following a script.
     
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  4. Mia

    Mia Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I think that small talk was invented by people who wanted to cover up what they actually think. It's a kind of subterfuge that people use as a 'arms length' measure to be able to understand and figure out strangers. People who talk about the weather for example on first meeting.

    Native's on first meeting discuss their ancestors, who is related to whom, to establish a connection and discover if they are somehow related or were at peace or war with another tribe historically, so they know how to approach this person who they have just met.

    I suspect these kinds of social niceties have a historical significance, to establish hierarchy.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2016
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  5. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Very, very difficult and why, I suppose most nt's perfer to only have a quick: hello to me, because when I start talking, they seem to drift!

    I also have being hypocritical, but sadly no choice!
     
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  6. Tanya

    Tanya spirit gardener

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    I never found your smalltalk boring Suzanne .
     
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  7. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I am confused to what small talk is then lol I thought I always talk deep things? I have been told a few times that: wow you are deep!
     
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  8. CK1977

    CK1977 Active Member

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    Maybe nt's are nervous or they just want to be doing something because they might be uncomfortable with silence?!
     
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  9. Tanya

    Tanya spirit gardener

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    I think smalltalk actually acts as a barrier to disguise what's going on
     
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  10. CK1977

    CK1977 Active Member

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    I have been told the same thing, "that I am deep". I have usually taken that as a good thing. But those same people don't actually say they are uncomfortable with that. I have had people say, "that their intimidated by me". I think sometimes it forces people to actually think on a different level.
     
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  11. JCat

    JCat New Member

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    I understand! ... I've had people tell me that too (especially at work) ... that I'm intimidating ... which I find really strange because I'm intimidated by everyone!!!!
     
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  12. Catlover614

    Catlover614 Love Conquers

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    I hate small talk too. Please forgive me forwhat I'm about to say..................
    I hate when my NT boyfriend comes home from work and engages in small talk about his day on the job. He's an electrician and loves to brag about his abilities in the electrical field. I don't care to know about what Larry said or did or how Jim conducts his business. Don't get me wrong, I love my boyfriend and I care about him and his endeavors. But, I simply don't want to chit chat about his coworkers. Ya know? I don't interrupt him as he's going on and on about his work day and I listen, but I never know how to respond. It's electricity and I don't know the terminology. And my neighbors sometimes want to chit chat about this and that....I am polite and courteous on the outside and cringing on the inside.
     
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  13. ezcare

    ezcare Aspie Advocate and Proponent of the Golden Rule V.I.P Member

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    What is even worse than NT's following a script is forcing Aspies to wear emotional masks in response. It begins to resemble a Mardi Gras of emotional hypocrisy. While the NTs seem to have no problem following their script, we Aspies find our souls leaking out of our minds when trying to reconcile our emotions with our facial expressions in a deceitful way. This process may energize the average NT but it is a bleeding circuit for us.
     
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  14. abby normal

    abby normal Well-Known Member

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    I've always been much better at small talk than big talk:flushed:
     
  15. biblophile

    biblophile Well-Known Member

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    When ever I have to engage in small talk I become very anxious, it is to much pressure not only to think of replies but also to pretend I am interested in what people talk about. I often feel bad about this but I am not good at faking interest. When I leave my building to go outside I try to make certain there are no neighbors outside. I feel like a bugler in my own building
     
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  16. tree

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

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    What you describe does not really seem to be 'small talk' per se.
    In your opinion what he saying is of no importance.
    For him, it is what he has been experiencing
    in his work day. He may find it amusing or
    frustrating or have any variety of reactions.

    Small talk.....is social lubricant. It shows the intention to be
    amicable, to get along. Not unlike dog butt sniffing/checking
    out their message boards.

    Example:
    William: Morning, Paul.
    Paul: Oh, morning, William, how are you?
    William: Fine, thanks. Have a good weekend?
    Paul: Yes, thanks. Catch you later.
    William: OK, see you.
    The content of what your boyfriend says is probably not a recap of
    conversations such as the one above.

    Are you, in fact, saying that you think he is talking about his work
    day in an effort to display an intent to get along with you? That he
    uses the report from work in order to show he is harmless?

    You might want to study what the theme of his daily job report is.
    Even Little Golden Books that are only the alphabet or counting
    have an underlying meaning. We did that for school, now & then---
    outlined the basic meaning of simple books.

    An alphabet book, for instance, shows that there is order to
    language. A book that says things like "4 butterflies" indicates
    there is way to quantify things in the world, that a person isn't
    helpless to know what is going on.

    Or maybe you are bored with your boyfriend and don't care what
    goes on in his life or how he thinks/feels about it. In which case,
    disregard the above.
     
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  17. midlife aspie

    midlife aspie Well-Known Member

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    I have to agree with Tree in Catlover's case. He is making an attempt to engage in a form of intimacy, which is different from small talk largely due to the inclusion of personal details. He is sharing this with you in an honest effort to engage you in his life. My wife does this same thing.
     
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  18. Vinca

    Vinca Speaking through Pictures V.I.P Member

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    My ex boyfriend used to say he'd 'call me later' a lot, and it really annoyed me because I thought that he would, so waited for a call that never came, it was so confusing.

    I've come to the conclusion that small talk is like a code, and that the majority of it isn't literal. I'm gradually trying to learn what different parts of small talk mean, so, I'd describe 'I'll call you later' as an elaborate way of saying 'goodbye', the same way that 'how are you' is an elaborate way of saying 'hello', because almost 100% of the time, if someone says 'how are you', they don't actually want you to tell them how you are. It's like trying to learn another language :rolleyes:
     
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  19. paloftoon

    paloftoon Well-Known Member

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    A lot of people don't like to be deep, so small talk is pretty much any talk not deep. To do small talk, you have to make an effort to create non-substance. I have a hard time with this myself. Common small talk includes describing the weather, asking how your day was, always saying positive answers like good and fine without explaining why. If people ask why, that can give you a reason to ask why back. If they don't reciprocate well and you know it's intentional (usually even many of us can tell), then that's a good sign to "run for the hills" from the person and only work appropriately professional with them when and if you have to. People deserve another chance always unless they did something abusive to you, but you make them earn it. If they do things at your convenience to show that they care afterward, then it's worth giving the friendship or romance another chance.
     
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  20. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    It makes me sad and occasionally angry that so few people are interested or willing to discuss things beyond superficiality.

    At least now I understand what's behind most of it.
     
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