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Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

Joined: 22 Dec 2021
Gender: Female
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16 Jan 2022, 7:45 pm

I hate small talk, most people do. Even neurotypicals will say how much they hate it. So why do they do it? It's not like it's enjoyable or you can form a lasting connection by talking about the weather. So what purpose does it serve?
Maybe I'm wrong here, but I think it's a way to form social hierarchy. Small talk, body language, eye contact, it's all just to figure out how they will interact with you in the future. Since neurotypicals assume if you don't make eye contact that you aren't confident then they will treat you as such. If you talk too fast or too slow then they will think you're dumb. And all of these seemingly arbitrary rules build where they place you in their personal social hierarchy.
But with autistic people we just don't have this sense of hierarchy at all. An easy example of this are teachers, bosses, and parents. How many times have you said something you thought was completely innocent to one of those groups and were told it was rude or ballsy? Or when you acted completely normal to a child, a homeless person, another disabled person, and were praised for basic decency?
They see these people as higher or lower than us in their social hierarchy and expect us to act accordingly. I don't think a lack of hierarchy is a bad thing at all. It just blew my mind to realize that this is how neurotypicals function.
Maybe I'm completely wrong but this makes sense with my experiences. I'm just curious what other people think and if anyone else had similar thoughts or stories :heart:


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17 Jan 2022, 8:00 am

 ! Cornflake wrote:
Several snarky posts making small talk have been removed.

It's not funny posting that to a thread where the OP states how much she hates it.

Giraffe: a ruminant with a view.


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Joined: 4 Feb 2014
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17 Jan 2022, 9:56 am

“Small talk” is a way of “breaking the ice.” Most people, even “normal” people, are wary of strangers and feel guarded and shy around strangers.

I’m not too keen on small talk—but I understand the reasoning behind it.


Joined: 23 Feb 2020
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19 Jan 2022, 8:51 am

I kind of relate it to social interactions among animals. There are certain almost instinctive rituals that various critters use to introduce themselves to strangers. Dogs sniff one another, so do horses, and many other animals. then they usually circle and perhaps chase each other, signal by body language intent or dominance.... or other things depending on the species ... well, humans use small talk the same way.

We sort of size each other up and use those interactions to sort friend from foe, who is the strongest, smartest, etc etc.

If you have observed people entering a room at a gathering, you have seen how sometimes power changes, there is almost a ripple of attention paid when somebody socially stronger enters a group.

It is very interesting to sit on a back wall or in a corner somewhere and to observe these behaviors.

I guess it helped me to understand humans better once I understood the body language of animals.

I think where I still get thrown off is when the words coming out of mouths don't match the body language.

Sending best wishes. I don't like social rituals either. ( I am not an alpha herd member in any group at all)


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Joined: 25 Feb 2020
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19 Jan 2022, 9:15 am

It's always been puzzling to me why some people don't greet the cleaning staff, or other "low ranking" individuals.
Or another example, "high ranks" refuse to empty the dishwasher and expect receptionists or other "low ranks" to do it.
I never thought about it being a NT/ND thing though.


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Joined: 9 Jan 2021
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19 Jan 2022, 4:45 pm

Real-life convo:

Woman: ..Well atleast i'm hotter than xxx* , Me: Hotter than xxx*. Hotter than July.... Stevie Wonder.....1981..... [[have to stop myself at this point from Info dumping.]].Is this normal? for my brain it is. I always make trivial connections, But Sometimes I don't know when it's too much, that fine line between being geeky, and having nothing to say :scratch:


Small talk should atleast be interesting right? Or does it cease to become small talk, if it becomes interesting... :scratch:

AQ: 27 Diagnosis:High functioning (just on the cusp of normal.) IQ:131 (somewhat inflated result but ego-flattering) DNA:XY Location: UK. Eyes: Blue. Hair: Brown. Height:6'1 Celebrity I most resemble: Tom hardy. Favorite Band: The Doors. Personality: uhhm ....(what can i say...we asd people are strange)