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Summer_Twilight
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03 Apr 2021, 12:28 pm

Hi:
I want to learn how to be more assertive with people who think they have to repeat themselves with us. So far I have used "I get it, I am not dumb." What are some other good assertive responses?



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03 Apr 2021, 8:10 pm

"I heard it the first time already."

"I'll get it done faster without you on my back."


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Summer_Twilight
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05 Apr 2021, 8:42 am

Thanks



Mona Pereth
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05 Apr 2021, 11:34 am

Summer_Twilight wrote:
Hi:
I want to learn how to be more assertive with people who think they have to repeat themselves with us. So far I have used "I get it, I am not dumb." What are some other good assertive responses?

Are you talking about (1) people with a tendency to repeat themselves in general, or (2) people with a tendency to repeat themselves with you, in particular, or with people known to be autistic, but not with most other people, and whose repetitions are just one aspect of an overall talking-down-to-you attitude?

The remainder of this post will assume you mean people in category #1. Handling people in category #2 is more complicated.

I would suggest that when such a person says something to you the first time, you reply with a paraphrase of what the person said. Say something like, "If I understand correctly, you want XYZ, right?" or "In other words, you believe XYZ, right?" (replacing XYZ with your paraphrase).

That's the only way to assure the person that you have, in fact, correctly understood what they said.

People with a tendency to repeat themselves (I'm one of them) do so because we worry that what we said wasn't clear enough, and that the other person may have misunderstood some crucial point. We worry about this not because we think the other person is especially "dumb," but because, in our experience, misunderstandings happen all the time, with all sorts of people. Therefore, we never take it for granted that we have been correctly understood.

Misunderstanding are, in fact, very common -- as should be evident to anyone who has ever played the the telephone game. And indeed, various scientific experiments have confirmed that misunderstandings are much more common than most people think -- even among NT's. All the more so are misunderstandings commonplace when autistic people are involved.

Saying "I get it, I am not dumb" does not constitute even the slightest evidence whatsoever that you have, in fact, correctly understood what the other person said. It only adds the complication of taking it personally.

If people continue to repeat themselves after it has been established that you indeed correctly understood what they said, I would suggest that you respond with another paraphrase and then say something like, "If you have nothing new to add to this, could we please move on to another topic?"


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Last edited by Mona Pereth on 05 Apr 2021, 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

Summer_Twilight
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08 Apr 2021, 10:47 am

When I mean repeat, I am talking more about people who remind me of the same thing more than once as if I am not capable of understanding something.



Mona Pereth
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10 Apr 2021, 9:59 am

Summer_Twilight wrote:
When I mean repeat, I am talking more about people who remind me of the same thing more than once as if I am not capable of understanding something.

Judging by what you said earlier about how you respond ("I get it, I am not dumb."), it was already clear to me that you feel that you are being treated as if you are not capable of understanding something.

But I was wondering whether that's a correct interpretation of their behavior. To that end, I asked you whether these people repeat themselves with everyone, or just with you (and perhaps with other people known to be autistic or otherwise neurodivergent). Your response did not address that question. I'm sorry if my oriiginal question was not clear.

Of course, there's an irony here: I just now engaged in the very behavior you're complaining about -- repeating myself -- because your response appeared to indicate that you didn't understand the original question. I don't think you're incapable of understanding it, though, and I hope my manner of repeating myself was not offensive. If it was, I am sorry.


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11 Apr 2021, 7:08 am

I say 'you already told that story'.

But it's socially normal to only tell a few narratives.

Just really bloody boring


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Summer_Twilight
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11 Apr 2021, 8:10 pm

Mona Pereth wrote:
Summer_Twilight wrote:
When I mean repeat, I am talking more about people who remind me of the same thing more than once as if I am not capable of understanding something.

Judging by what you said earlier about how you respond ("I get it, I am not dumb."), it was already clear to me that you feel that you are being treated as if you are not capable of understanding something.

But I was wondering whether that's a correct interpretation of their behavior. To that end, I asked you whether these people repeat themselves with everyone, or just with you (and perhaps with other people known to be autistic or otherwise neurodivergent). Your response did not address that question. I'm sorry if my oriiginal question was not clear.

Of course, there's an irony here: I just now engaged in the very behavior you're complaining about -- repeating myself -- because your response appeared to indicate that you didn't understand the original question. I don't think you're incapable of understanding it, though, and I hope my manner of repeating myself was not offensive. If it was, I am sorry.



I am talking about when someone reminds me of something twice - for example "Watch your step I am mopping here" as if they seem to think I am clueless.

No, I doubt they repeat themselves with everyone



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13 Apr 2021, 10:54 am

the Power of " I Know " is resonant .



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13 Apr 2021, 10:58 am

Good Point OP . Because i Have Very Quick Eyes & Anaylsis . People assume I'm ever Thick or Confused . Neither . often its the Proverbial waiting for the bus to arrive . Reality can Feel SoSlow .. especially the speed of some people . I'm Merely Trying To Occupy The Space Between :D

Because Our Social Cues & Gesturing Can Seem Abstract To Others . They Simply Can't See All The Colours



Mona Pereth
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13 Apr 2021, 10:56 pm

Summer_Twilight wrote:
I am talking about when someone reminds me of something twice - for example "Watch your step I am mopping here" as if they seem to think I am clueless.

No, I doubt they repeat themselves with everyone

Perhaps they're just not sure whether you heard them the first time? Do you typically respond to people when they say such things the first time? If so, what do you typically say, on first hearing of such requests?


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Summer_Twilight
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14 Apr 2021, 4:47 pm

No I just find it annoying and also triggering because I have had situations where people find out that I am on the spectrum and start acting patronizing or condescending with me. I also listen to this life coach on youtube who suggested the "I am not dumb, I get it."



Mona Pereth
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18 Apr 2021, 6:06 am

In your latest post, you explained why you are bothered by people repeating themselves, but you did not respond to, or in any way acknowledge, the questions I asked you in my post immediately before yours.

I don't know whether your in-person interactions are similar to some of your online interactions in this regard, but, if they are, then the above is almost certainly an example of one of the reasons why people in your life tend to repeat themselves. And it points to a possible way for you to make the people around you less likely to repeat themselves.

My suggestion is that, whenever anyone makes a request of you the first time, you respond to it as soon as possible, and make sure you respond directly to the specific thing they said, rather than immediately changing the subject.

If you don't respond immediately, directly, and specifically to a person's request, then it's only natural for the person to repeat it, because they wonder if you heard it the first time.


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Last edited by Mona Pereth on 18 Apr 2021, 6:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

cyberdad
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18 Apr 2021, 6:11 am

Summer_Twilight wrote:
When I mean repeat, I am talking more about people who remind me of the same thing more than once as if I am not capable of understanding something.


Yeah my daughter tells me off for doing this. Her tactic to me is eye contact....stares at me

Works every time she wins :lol:



Summer_Twilight
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19 Apr 2021, 7:17 am

Mona,
I am trying to answer your questions the best that I can. I sorry If I cannot answer your question directly but those are my answers. Maybe you need to be more direct.

That said, I am talking about people who repeat themselves by letting us know a rule or some sort of task.

“Please put the toilet seat down.”
“Don’t forget your purse.”

These are usually people who know I am autistic



Mona Pereth
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19 Apr 2021, 7:35 am

Summer_Twilight wrote:
That said, I am talking about people who repeat themselves by letting us know a rule or some sort of task.

“Please put the toilet seat down.”
“Don’t forget your purse.”

Do you, in fact, forget to do these things, at least sometimes -- perhaps not very often, but more often than other family members forget them?

If so, perhaps it might be a good idea to come up with some other, less annoying way of reminding yourself? For example, perhaps post on your wall of checklist of things to remember to do before you leave the house? If you can thereby show that you are taking responsibility for reminding yourself, perhaps other family members might stop feeling a need to remind you?

If you don't, in fact, forget these things any more often than anyone else does, have you asked other family members why they feel a need to remind you?


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