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Too many choices, simplicity and special interests

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Suzette, Jul 30, 2021.

  1. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I have an intense dislike / hate of too many choices. This primarily relates to things but can bleed over into other stuff like vacation destinations, career path etc.

    Having too many choices is overwhelming. Obviously when I need to buy something I want the "best" thing for my needs and budget. When deciding what "best" means my natural inclination is to gather information so that a comparison can be made. That sounds simple but when faced with a dozen items of a simiilar nature, I can spend hours reading labels. That makes a weeks worth of food shopping untenable and buying something like shampoo very difficult, while buying clothes can seem impossible.

    If I have to buy groceries I can usually handle the lights and noise and some crowds but too many choices can lead to meltdown.

    I have solved this problem by simply buying the same things over and over. I buy the same toiletries too.
    I have a simple menu of diiners that I cook and always buy the foods to make those dinners. We generally eat the same breakfast every day and have for years. My husbsnd is o.k. with this for the most part. He tells me he will eat anything, and what I make tastes good so there is no problem. One time we did have some trouble in the kitchen though. He asked me to make a dish that his mother used to make. But I was cueless about this dish. I had never eaten it, seen or or even heard of it and my husbsnd did not have a recipe. That scenario is very upsetting as it means I fail right from the start. Eventually he understood my dilema and helped me to figure the dish out.

    Anyway this aversion to choices concerns my clothes too. I wear loose fitting cotton tshirts or soft cotton button up shirts and loose fitting cotton shorts or pants and knit skirts No tags of course. Never, ever, ever any "stretch" fabrics or tight, form fitting clothes. I have one dress for nicer wear and it is a closer fit but I can manage since Ill only wear it for a couple of hours at a time. I will not ever, ever, try on clothes in a store. I can usually tell how a garnment will fit by looking at how it is cut.
    I hate clothing shopping more than just about anything so I wear my clothes until they are pretty ragged. In have about 12 shirts and 2 pants, 3 shorts, 2 skirts, one dress.

    Along with this dislike of choices, I dislike clutter. Especially clutter without a purpose. I was reading that aspie women often have collections related to their soecial interests. The examples given were things like Harry Potter memorabilia or photographs and magazines about their favorite star. I can not relate to this.

    I do get intensely interested in a subject but my subjects are all about learning to do something. I am not even good at what I learn to do. For those interests I will buy a lot of equipment, materials and tools but once that subject has run out of steam, I sell or give my stuff away. No regrets.

    I appologise for my rambling. I am just wondering if any of this is relatable.
     
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  2. Skittlebisquit

    Skittlebisquit Keep trying to be as amazing as you really are V.I.P Member

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    Very much so
    The simplified menu, and clothing. I make it known that I like getting clothes and espescially shoes as gifts

    The issue with your orphan projects sounds really positive, but I save it all. All the tools and the material too. I like making things. The clutter thing changed in me, a while ago. It used to bother me, but Now I like having options, and care little about looks. I buy filing cabinets at goodwill. They are sturdy workbenches already made. I use two and put boards across, like a desk.

    And clothes from thrift/used stores too. The clothes are a better value, and they are broke in that way
     
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  3. Yeshuasdaughter

    Yeshuasdaughter You know, that one lady we met that one time. V.I.P Member

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    We have mirror lives. Everything is the same.
     
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  4. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I do buy my clothes from thrift shops when I can. I get better quality than I can usually afford. But I live in Mexico most of the year and I don't have access.

    I wish I had room to keep all my toys. I would have individual work shops for everything. Almost a library of vocational and occupational skills and crafts. That would be lovely.
     
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  5. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    SmartSelect_20210730-014002_Chrome.jpg
     
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  6. Skittlebisquit

    Skittlebisquit Keep trying to be as amazing as you really are V.I.P Member

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    I bet it's a long list of things you know about
     
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  7. Progster

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

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    I can most definitely relate to this. It can take me a long time to decide on a product in the supermarket. Also other products - if I need a new phone or something, it can take me hours, days of reading and looking for reviews and information on the subject - often I just can't decide. Other people I know just grab things of the shelf without particularly looking at the details or price, but I can't do that.
     
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  8. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    It's one of the modern madnesses of the world - too much choice, too many tv channels, too much musick, too many slebs, too many homewares/colours, too many genders, too many options generally.

    I just try and keep it simple.

    When I was younger I had collections, but being a renter it teaches you not to accumulate stuff or if so, not a lot of it, and get rid of it if it's no worth money. Now I'm old I don't want a lot of stuff.
     
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  9. Yeshuasdaughter

    Yeshuasdaughter You know, that one lady we met that one time. V.I.P Member

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    It feels very good to get rid of piles of things and keep it simple and easy to move, doesn't it?
     
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  10. unperson

    unperson Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    oh yeah, I love throwing stuff out. When my 'parent' died, I got dumped with the throwout (bro did the driving to the tip). My sister who is a bit ocd/hoarder, could not help, she was very slow even to go through her old room - she came up with one little thing when the whole room needed to be chucked.
     
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  11. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    The first time I cleaned out all of my stuff was when I was 17. I thought I wasn't liked because of who I was, so I tried to get rid of all vestiges of that person to reinvent myself. That didn't work of course but it felt really, really good so I did it again.
    I've purged my belongings every few years since. I was Marie Kondoing before Marie Kondo.
    The first time I was married though hubby was my antithesis. Learning to respect his collection style was very hard but I did learn!
     
  12. Martha Ferris

    Martha Ferris Seeking answers

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    I am similar in so many ways.
    I am very sensitive to touch. When I was young I HAD to wear a hat all the time. I could not stand the feeling of my head being bare. Eventually after going through many hats my parents bought me this ugly bucket hat with a wind spinner on top. I hated it but I needed to wear a hat. One day during a fishing expedition it blew off into the water and sank. A moment of crisis. My father watched me intently. At some point I accepted that it was gone and from then on I could go without wearing a hat but I was scared of being without for awhile.
    Another thing happened on my ninth birthday. My mother wanted to put my hair up in a pony tail. Scream!!! I told her I didn't want my hair in a pony tail repeatedly but it became a power struggle for her. For me it was about how my hair felt on my head. The more I protested the tighter she pulled my hair back. Finally with my hair up I lost it and screaming and crying ripped and tore at my hair at which point mother slapped me across the face. Because of that experience when I had children I told them that it was their hair and they could wear it however they wanterd.
    When leggings came into style I though "Great! I can expand my ward robe." My wardrobe consisted of scrubs and jeans combined with various tops. Nope. I tried to wear them, I really did, but I just couldn't. Can't stand the feel. Can't stand pantyhose or nylon socks. What tops I wear are becoming more limited as I get older. I prefer baggy cotton.
    My hands were also an issue. I couldn't stand anything on them. I would wash dishes without dish soap to the outrage of my brother. I had to learn to tolerate lotion when I went into nursing. I was always washing my hands even before going into my profession because of the issue with how my hands felt with "stuff" on them. They were always cracked and bleeding. The funny thing is that I could wear cotton gloves at night with my hands covered with vasaline to help them heal. The gloves made the difference. I would not have been able to tolerate the vasaline without the gloves.

    I eat the same things for breakfast and lunch. It is only dinner that changes in small ways. Life is simpler that way and eating has never been important to me. I don't get a great deal of enjoyment from it.

    I am a neat and tidy person even though I have my knick knacks and wall art. Growing up we were poor and my mother hated knick knacks, just more things to dust, so the house was pretty bare. All my "stuff" enriches my life but everything has its place. I have all my stuff pared down to what is important to me and have gotten rid of the rest. Having to downsize and do work on the new house helped me give things the old heave ho that I was holding onto "just in case". I have lots of books. I love books.

    When I go shopping I go in and get what I need and get out except in hardware stores. I love hardware stores and can wander up and down the aisles considering all that I could do with what is there. In grocery stores I just block out all the selections and go for what I am used to and like. It throws me when what I usually buy is not available. Momentary panic. I keep looking and looking for an item hoping that I am just not seeing it and it will suddenly appear but it doesn't. Then I have to accept that it is not there and review my options. I am even put out that because I don't want or expect much one would think that the store could at least keep what I want and buy month after month in stock. I know it is not rational but feelings often aren't. :)
     
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  13. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    @Martha Ferris, I am not a neat and Tidy person. I am not a horrible slob, but I draw a definite line. I watch my mother being controlled by her desire for perfection. She thinks her compulsion (my word) is not a problem but she can not let go. She even physically pushed me away from the dishwasher because I put one plate in crooked briefly. Similarly, I think my anti-decor is a reaction to my mothers "Good Housekeeping", magazine perfect home, image.
    I have enough anxiety, I do not need to borrow hers.
     
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  14. Martha Ferris

    Martha Ferris Seeking answers

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    I am not compulsive about it and those who are drive me nuts. You can't have animals and kids in that kind of environment with expectations of perfection. Does it work this way? Then it is all well and good.
    The one thing I am compulsive about is balance and evenness. Pictures have to be hung just so, not tipping and of equal distance from each other, and there must be a balanced affect with what is hung on a wall or between walls and/or windows. I can't just slap something on a wall and call it good. It just looks "wrong" to me.
     
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  15. mw2530

    mw2530 Well-Known Member

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    This is exactly what I do as well. It saves stress and time to stick with what I know so I have a good reason for doing so. Although when I feel up for it I do try to try making something new which sometimes expands my go to options going forward. In my case, I am only cooking for myself so I am the only one who has to be willing to eat what I make!
     
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  16. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    This need for balance is why I had blank walls in my house. I could never achieve what I wanted! For color I liked pretty pillow (but not too many) and a sofa throw. I should clarify that my house was really small, the rooms were just 8 feet wide. My house was a very old converted barn but I did the "tiny house" thing before it was a thing.
    On my boat though, there are no "walls". But we have lots of lovely wood that does not need decoration.
     
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  17. Suzette

    Suzette Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I do this too. Sometimes with disasterous resukts! Haha!
     
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  18. Gerald Wilgus

    Gerald Wilgus Well-Known Member

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    I am not too bad. I have goto recipes, but will try different things once in a while. Clothes are another thing entirely. I do not have somatic issues around touch, but, growing up poor and having to accept any ill-fitting thing I was given, left me desiring clothes with a good fit. But, I hunt for similar clothes that I already have rather than shopping. I know the designer's lines that fit me well and almost exclusively buy them. Others, especially for outdoor activities, I buy for durability. I sometimes indulge my odd tastes, like when I travel through Denver I will always stop in to Rockmount Ranchwear. Last I bought there was a black shirt with embroidered skulls and roses.
     
  19. Wulven

    Wulven Active Member

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    I had that problem with college. Never could decide what to study. Wanted to be a pilot or join the military. :oops: Neither worked out. I'm not mentally fit for either career and my math score was too low for college. So that was that.
     
  20. Gerald Wilgus

    Gerald Wilgus Well-Known Member

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    I used to collect fossils and this plays into three interests; travel, Natural History, and Geology. A decade ago I gave the material to Northwestern where students will get use of it. Now accumulating Moroccan Trilobites that I will keep until I donate those in a couple of years. The only thing I've collected out of pure fascination are Fetishes from Zuni, mainly frogs and snakes. It gives me pleasure seeing them as it reminds me of the little critters who share the world with us..
     
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