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NeantHumain
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04 Apr 2005, 10:27 pm

It seems I've had some success recently in social things. I've been smiling a lot more lately and talked cheerily. The positive reactions from people have really lifted my mood--that and the beautiful, sunny spring weather. A group of girls even stopped asking me to take their picture today. I've flirted with cashiers and spontaneously offered to help people who appeared to need help. I've been trying to be supportive of the few people I do talk to regularly who are more worry-prone and less optimistic as I am (or had been).

In my French class, I gave a presentation on politics that went quite well, even though I was sweating bullets; the professor complimented me on it and suggested I abandon the crutch of reading from a paper because I answered her and my classmates' questions quite well. I'll be giving a second presentation this Thursday, so let's hope it goes as well or better than the last one.

Today I was going to eat dinner alone, as I often do, and study for a quiz I have tomorrow, but then I saw someone I'd often seen eating alone too. I decided to say hi and ask if I could join him. I did. We talked about our majors (his is industrial engineering) and fairly standard stuff. By the look on his face, he was quite surprised by my saying hi. His monotone voice and inclination towards mathematics indicates to me that he may have some autistic traits himself too.

I'm truly amazed what smiling and maintaining a positive attitude can do to improve social situations. That, and I have been making more of an effort to look people in the eye as I speak to them; and I have been offering help when it seems useful. I'm very well aware that my problems have not all magically vanished; however, much progress has been made.



hale_bopp
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04 Apr 2005, 10:47 pm

Good on you, I'm pleased for your sucess. :)



Ghosthunter
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04 Apr 2005, 10:55 pm

I totally agree that a good smile
and sincere hello is a wonderful thing.
The maintaince of communication
requires it.

The reality is that what interests
autistic people is over most peoples
heads. this is what creates "Silence"
and frowning.

Here I am talking to people
in a controlled envirement and don't
have to repeat myself, thus if this
were a person to person, face to
face conversation. Instead it has
a electronic interface and I shine
from within with a I-Phyisical lack
of expression on my face.

Then if someone came by and
said hi, I look unhappy outside, not
within. This is a autistic outlook
that smiling may cure partilly.

100% for smiling and others having
similiar interest, just too bad it
has to be computer to computer.



vetivert
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05 Apr 2005, 1:54 am

bloody good for you, neanthumain, and glad it's been so positive for you.

yes, social skills CAN be learned, even if it is difficult at times, and we have to remember to do it. i've obviously managed it, to the point where i spend half my working life teaching (NT) kids social skills (oh, the irony...). yes, it's a big effort.

i often hear (read) aspies talking about "why we should have to fit in with NT society, cos these social skills are pointless." well, here's the point of them, if you like: if one wants to be accepted and have a slightly easier time (and a lot of hard work), there's your motivation. i'm not saying everyone can do it, and i know how exhausting it can be (forty odd years of doing it, myself), but a lot of the time, it's worth the effort. watch other people, in "real life", on the telly, films etc. study behavioural psychology (a bit drastic, but what i did). read fiction (mainstream, not fantasy, with "real" people in it). and bob's your banana. of course, it won't happen by osmosis, like it does with NTs - you'll probably have to analyse exactly what is happening (which is why i'm so good at teaching it to others, including my aspie ex, cos i analyse it to death).

just some suggestions.



meox
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05 Apr 2005, 2:16 am

Good job man! :)

I might try some of your methods.



berta
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05 Apr 2005, 3:50 am

I do not think smiling is going to help me with my problems in any way. I would just feel soooo fake for pretending not to be myself. But I get your point though. Good point:)

I guess I better go and work on my own masterplan of how I will make friends



Sarcastic_Name
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05 Apr 2005, 10:44 pm

I have enough friends without faking a smile. I don't know how I've done it, but I have enough friends to keep me happy without covering up my AS a lot. I fake a smile at work because I get paid for it. Any other situation and my face well look unhappy (unless I'm laughing). I don't know how this applies, but I thought I'd say it anyways.


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Bec
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05 Apr 2005, 11:02 pm

That's great NeantHumain! Keep up the good work!

vetivert wrote:
yes, social skills CAN be learned, even if it is difficult at times, and we have to remember to do it. i've obviously managed it, to the point where i spend half my working life teaching (NT) kids social skills (oh, the irony...). yes, it's a big effort.

i often hear (read) aspies talking about "why we should have to fit in with NT society, cos these social skills are pointless." well, here's the point of them, if you like: if one wants to be accepted and have a slightly easier time (and a lot of hard work), there's your motivation.


I just quoted this because I thought it was important. Everything that vetivert said is true.

Everyone must have basic social skills. Period.