How To Talk To Someone With Aspergers Syndrome

Communicating with people who have Aspergers Syndrome is apparently hard for people who don’t have it. I hyper-analyze people and have found the flaws in our communication skills. People with Aspergers are much more literal. If you say “You can’t jump off the roof.” They may jump off the roof to prove that they can to jump off the roof. Verbal communication is so important, yet NTs(normal people) slack off on their verbal communication. People seem to forget that can, may,could, would, should, and will all mean something different. These words cause major communication problems. I’ll do something & someone will say “I never gave you permission to do that.” I then echolalia back what they said & they realize that they did indeed give me permission. Be very careful with those words.

Never, ever make a promise. What is a promise? In my mind a promise is when someone says “I promise” or when someone says they’ll do something like “I’ll help you tomorrow”. My parents don’t use those words with me, because it only leads to confusion & hurt feelings.

When someone promises you can do something, then no matter what comes up they should have to hold their promise. When reality sets in you will see that no one should make a promise, because you can’t absolutely guarantee without a shadow of a doubt that you’ll be able to keep it. Instead of the word promise say “I will try to help you, but I can’t make any guarantees when I’ll be able to help you.” or “Ill help you with that tomorrow, unless something unexpected comes up.”

I know that may seem like a lot of extra words that aren’t needed, but they are needed to avoid miscommunication.

Here is a true example of how my Dad helped me out by being literal. He told me a year before hand that “we will go to {a major trade only event broadcasted all over TV} next year, unless something unforeseen happens within the next year making it so we can’t go.”

Being literal helps out a lot! Some very unexpected things happened making it impossible to get to the trade show. I was sad, but I understood why we couldn’t go & that my Dad had warned me of the possibility we couldn’t go ahead of time. Change is a really hard thing for most people with Aspergers to deal with, so when plans change drastically, it might be somewhat hard to process.

An issue I’ve ran into when speaking with my friends who have Aspergers is if you leave out a couple words that most people wouldn’t even notice, well they do, because they are like me and the entire conversation changes course.

You need to be very clear on what you’re saying down to the very last word when speaking to someone. You should always be careful on your wording, whether you’re talking to an aspie or not. I don’t have to be super careful on my wording, because I am used to speaking like an aspie since I am an aspie. Once in awhile I will forget to say a word that inadvertently alters the literal form of a conversation. I usually correct myself or the other person asks what I actually mean.

I usually use 4 to 6 syllable words to help avoid mis-communication in conversations. If you don’t know a word that someone says, just ask them what it means and they will attempt to explain.

If you want to have a good conversation with someone who has Aspergers you need to talk about what they mainly focus on. You will learn a ton of new information this way and have a good conversation with an aspie. I hope this answers a few questions I’ve received on how to talk to someone with Aspergers.

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7 thoughts on “How To Talk To Someone With Aspergers Syndrome

  1. Marge Zetto says:

    I am tired of catering to you. Learn how to socialize. Sorry it is not innate. But YOU can learn social cues yourself, and I suggest you do so. So take this literally. You need to Litterally go learn the social cues of normal human beings. Such as a yawn in the midst of your dialog. Could be you are boring. Maybe let someone use the darn restroom once in a while. knock before entering. Make eye contact. Ask how they are for a change. Stop and think if you are thinking only of yourself, then you probably are. I know this is a conscious effort. But that Is your problem. LITERALLY.

    • Thank you for sharing your thoughts. If you read through the blog, you’ll learn that I am quite social and have been trying very hard to learn social cues for years upon years. I’ve come a long ways. I believe the anger you’re taking out on a random stranger, actually has to do with someone in your life that you believe is purposefully not learning social skills. This is most likely not the case. Please go through my entire blog, it will help you a lot, if you are willing to have an open mind and learn. My blog has helped so many people, I hope it can help you too.

    • Roxie says:

      There are literally no words to describe your ignorance, other than exactly that… ignorance. It is ironic that you speak of social skills when it appears that you are incapable of offering any social graces. The reply that you have had from aspergerresearch is very mature and, to be honest, offered more respect than your ill-thought and completely ill-informed comment deserved. I feel that I need to apologise on behalf of you for how offensive your comment was, as it is certainly not the feeling of the majority.

    • Rebecca says:

      You have a lot of anger that is misdirected towards someone you don’t know. You received an extremely polite and respectful answer from aspergerssearch that showed maturity and compassion‚Ķsomething you seem to lack. So, before you attach someone like that, maybe you should take a good, long look in the mirror and go “learn the social cues of normal human beings” yourself.

  2. Nead says:

    Thank you for this insight, I found it very helpful.

  3. Mike says:

    Well, I did cringe a little bit when I read your article. And then when I read the response my anxiety was confirmed. Luckily, a few people have chimed in and made things right. I understand what it is like to go through all of these things, I am autistic… however, it is not very wise to start giving orders to people without Autism. If they don’t care, they don’t care. If they do care, then they care. Most likely, if they are here on this site, they have some reason, and whether it is because they care about someone with Autism, whether they have Autism, or whether they don’t have Autism but care about themselves and want to attack someone with Autism for that person, or “Aspie”, caring about themselves likewise (a bit of a paradox), then those reasons are their own and we cannot order people around who don’t have reasons to follow our orders. But I must also agree with the realistic comments from Marge Zetto as well; it is a world out there where only the strong survive- nature is cruel. I used to get hurt all the time, physically and otherwise. Everyone does, even people without Autism. So my best tool is to really be friendly to people, and make the effort to put their interests and needs before mine. In the long run, I realized that if I decided to close myself off from the world because I was afraid I might hurt someone else and or hurt myself, then I would in fact only guarantee to hurt someone else and or hurt myself. But if I keep being friendly and trying then I can have at least a 50/50 chance of either hurting to helping. This is better than a 100/0 chance of hurting to helping. Part of my autism was seeking the 0/100 hurt to help ratio which is not possible in life, but it is still a good goal. Anyway, I want people without Autism to know that we can be strong people just like you. What I try to be like is you, a healthy person without mental illness. So don’t read these comments and believe that all people with Autism Asperger’s are self-centered. And I agree with Marge, this person clearly needs to put the work in if they want to succeed. Because I have Asperger’s and I thought while reading these statements, well good luck, but why is anybody going to want to care about someone who only cares about their self?

    • I appreciate the time you took to share your opinion. I apologize I didn’t get to approving new comments sooner. I care about other people quite a lot, so I am unsure why you think I don’t.

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