I read Dr Salzman’s advice for people dealing with specific difficulties in their life and I decided to look for his opinion in hope he’d be able to give me a piece of good advice too because I find him to be a very reasonable man but later I thought it would be better to post it here because Dr has no time for answering all those questions people ask him. If you read it, Dr Salzman, I would like to give me any advice as for what the nature of my disorder could be too, but I would like you all to answer me; all the people from this board.
My name is Jaskari and I am Finnish (so I’m sorry if there are any mistakes in my text). I’m 21. I hope someone reply because I really need any explanation on what I suffer from. I searched for an answer on a couple of sites devoted to various personality and developmental disorders but none of them really fully answered me what I am. I always knew there was something different about me since I became more self aware though I used to boil it down to different factors on which I will elaborate in a moment.
Through my whole childhood and adolescence I used to suffer from a very, very severe social phobia which wasn’t ever treated by mental health specialists in any manner. My family thought I just preferred being on my own and what’s more, they find going to such doctors very shameful. My family consists of my mother and her husband and my stepfather at the same time whom I really like, he’s a cool guy, but with whom I’m not very close due to the fact that unlike with mom, I didn’t live with him since early childhood so I didn’t get used to him as much as to mom. He has 3 children with his previous wife and one son with another woman but they don’t live with us. Two of them, older than me, did use to but not any more and this is good because I felt like a freak with contact with them – they were so normal and I at this background seemed more of a complete freak to myself. So I live just with mom and stepdad who are both very condescending when it comes to mental health issues.
For instance a couple of years ago, when I was 14, I remember that once I didn’t want to do something when mother wanted me to go with her for a walk. I am not sure myself what it was – either I didn’t want to leave home to go for a walk with her or I asked her then to buy me something because I was way too shy to talk to a shop assistant and she got really angry, shouting at me that “I was ******* afraid of people”, as if it was my fault. Well, it was my fault indeed, because nobody else was at fault that I was like that but what I mean by writing this down is to show you the attitude of my family to any problems with one’s head. My dad who lives in another city has the same attitude. They are rather simple minded and don’t get some more subtle problems.
I always blamed my social phobia (which diminished with the course of years but I’m still a phobic, now I can relatively normally live and people just think me to be really, really taciturn and a loner because I hide my shyness from others so I just come out as weird not a phobic) for my difference. I also thought the other reason was that I was much smarter than others but once, last year, I was tested and my IQ was in the “average” range of average intelligence, not even those magical 100 points. On the other hand, I must admit I think I actually am much smarter than others because I understand many things much better and faster than others (at school I had rather average grades but for the first few grades when I was very good, so it’s not about school stuff but just in general) and I know a lot of things ordinary people have no idea about. It was much more visible when I was a little boy and later an adolescent because now when I am adult it’s less visible because people reached the level of my maturity and knowledge possessed which wasn’t this case when I was younger. When I was in my early teens I always thought about myself as about a young adult man who was only biologically a teen not a mature man and I was right about it, I see it now (although now, ironically, when I’m an adult indeed, I’m extremely childish). Generally even earlier, as a child, my way of thinking and processing information was typical for this of an adult than of a kid.
My most serious problem is that I can’t relate to people, I just am an outsider and even when I tried to hide my untypical behaviors and thinking patterns I just couldn’t find any friends nor even acquaintances closer than just those to whom I say “hi” and this is all. Even with people who are known as weirdoes among others, our contacts don’t go beyond normal conversations we have when we meet at school, they have their friends with whom they prefer to spend time. I don’t relate to people emotionally and have no idea how I should behave so as to maintain and keep a friendship. I had a close friend in the past (he was my stepdad’s cousin) but that boy immigrated to Sweden where his family came from and we don’t contact now. It was a great experience to be a friend to someone, he was shy and that’s why he became my friend because his shyness limited him in terms of other friends he could get and who would be better, more interesting friends for him that I could be. When last year he came back to Sweden during summer, I discovered we in fact didn’t have that very much of common ground.
I posted a couple of times on message boards devoted to mental issues and I heard on them that I could have Asperger Syndrome, Narcissistic PD and Avoidant PD. As for AS, I think it to be very likely. But I think that I most possible have PDD NOS because: I can read people well, I don’t have almost any sensory issues and I don’t obsess over things to such an extent as aspies typically do. I actually started to obsess over stuff when I was like in my late preteens. It is like the female version of AS. But besides those, I have all problems of aspies, including dyspraxia.
My very severe problem I struggled with since about last year (I can’t give you the exact time since it started because I had such leanings since my middle childhood; it started to get worse – much worse – like in last year) was OCD. I had more precisely problems with thought compulsions,, now they faded away and I almost have no problems at all with those now. I obsessively was thinking (but I managed to a big extent to get rid of this problem of mine by the will power of mine) about the situations from my life when I committed a goof, said something stupid, made a fool of myself in this or that way and about those when someone told me something malicious or just sincere (and due to this so painful and unpleasant to me). It’s just like being recorded in my head by my own brain which remembered everything very well to me to torment me. It’s like I was still there, in the past, in the moments when those unpleasant situations took place. I think it is what is described as flashbacks in the articles on PTSD. I read that there is this difference between OCD thoughts and PTSD ones that those first refer to the situations which didn’t happen but the victim worries that they could happen and those former ones – to those which happened in our past and are painful to us.
I admit I do think a lot about my being bullied in elementary school and it is still like the time which has passed was maybe a couple of months ago, not years ago. I obsessively think about my ex schoolmates I could accidentally meet on the street, about how they would react if I did this or that, what they would say about me if they saw me in this or that situations. It’s horrible, just purely horrible to think what they would think of me because as a kid I was known by them as a very, very quiet loser and later I started to pretend a tough guy. After elementary school I was known as a controversial person and those I went to one class in elementary school for whom I was a meek lamb, would be very surprised to see such a change and would criticize me. I know it sounds hilarious, to be worried about such silly things as the opinion of those with whom I won’t have any contact, but it is so. I don’t have a Facebook or anything like that because I don’t want those people, even those who liked me then, to know anything of me, what I am doing and stuff. I feel like a loser because I haven’t achieved anything in comparison with others, I didn’t go to a really good university for example and I still live in our town while some others already live in other cities on their own.
My OCD or PTSD thoughts also concern bad situations I could face, like being severely injured or having to be alone because my parents would drop dead. I recently am very worried that they could die. They are mortal people and it could happen to them. They are in their 50’s and not too healthy, they are overweight and have high blood pressure issues. My mom also have some women’s health issues as. I am afraid of such bad situations.
I also hate to read about bad or disgusting or difficult situations which happened to others because I identify with those people in those novels, imaging it’s me who this negative situation concerns. I also have a hard time reading about sexual things because I am a person ashamed of myself and I can’t imagine being in such a situation with anybody any more (I was, as a child but it didn’t affect me negatively because it wasn’t molestation, forcing me or anything). Even now I am embarrassed to write about my sexuality because I imagine that others who knew me in the past as a loser, would read this, standing behind me and laughing at me at the very thought such a loser like myself could have such thoughts and desires. And at the thought of my having sex with a cousin when I was a kid and she a teen. Because when I was 9, H. my adolescent female cousin who was 13 had sex with me several times and I liked it a lot. I had always high sex drive, even when I was like 5,6. I was very glad I did it with her but I wouldn’t like to do it with anyone else because ‘d be embarrassed to take my clothes off in front of a strange woman and she was my cousin (I said “she was” not “is” because she died of a cancer). H. was someone I knew very well, I was accustomed to her.
I always imagined that when I was adult, it would be better and I would be just like everybody. But when I turned 18 and nothing changed, I sank into a depression for the next two and half a year. I was never diagnosed with it but I am sure it was it because what else those thoughts could be? It was this horrible feeling that I wouldn’t ever achieve anything and would be just one normal, anonymous nobody more. I felt that there was no hope left for me and that I started to grow old, yes, as funny as it seems, I had my mid life crisis then, it was like I was at least 50 or 60, not as old (or maybe rather young) as I was then. When I woke up, though I never had any suicidal thoughts, I was very sad that I woke up because it meant a new day started for me – a new day filled with this horrible feeling. I was waiting impatiently for the evening because it meant I’d be able to come back to sleep again to not think about anything. When in the evening I went to bed, I was doing it with a sigh of relief that in a couple of minutes I would be sleeping. I just felt sad and upset all the time, regardless of what I was doing, there was always this feeling, more or less hidden but always being a companion of mine. Later this depression went away but still even now I feel something like dysthymia. Nothing is giving me pleasure even if I am doing things I like. I am addicted to the Internet and this is the only thing I like doing now, except for reading and talking to my friends I know online. I feel like nothing great is not going to happen to me later. I never told anybody about my depression at home because I wouldn’t be understood. Anyway when I was in high school, I had this one friend who would find out I went to a shrink soon because it’s a small town I live in and he would think less of me because I always played a tough guy before him. Shy as he was, he was tough and he wouldn’t understand me. I think he had schizoid personality disorder. I myself don’t think I can have it because I do experience some feelings strongly (just some of them but still) while schizoids are apathetic and I unlike them, would like to have friends. Even if when I am among people I feel lonely and dream about going home as soon as possible.
I always thought I was going to be someone famous in the future, ever since my childhood. It started from all those celebrity gossip magazines I used to read as a kid. Magazines and the movies I watched. The faces of the actors and singers that appeared in them were known all over the world. I decided to be like them when I grew up. I couldn’t sing but I thought I would make a good actor. But I never did anything about this. I never went to any castings or took any acting classes though, I never did anything to make this secret wish of mine come true. There was also the wish in me to become a popular writer but I always destroyed everything I managed to write (these were short stories which weren’t ever finished by me – some of them were put away by me after a couple of first sentences – because I have a short attention spam and lacks in concentration). But when I didn’t become anybody famous in adulthood, I felt terrible – just one ordinary “joe average” more, it was horrible.
What makes me thing I may not have AS is that my interests aren’t obsessive and that I can read people very well, though I do admit I have problems with using this knowledge on what’s happening in their minds in practice and I can’t guess what people think of me – I have empathy only on an emotional level not an intellectual one which means that while I don’t have any problems with guessing how people react emotionally to my actions (although I don’t feel the same feelings as they do) I have them when it comes to judging mentally what knowledge on stuff and level of intelligence others have. For example I can talk to children like they were adult, expecting the same level of understanding as my own because as a child I understood everything so now I’m surprised children normally don’t understand such things. Or I don’t understand someone doesn’t have the same knowledge of stuff as me or I can talk to adults whose level of intelligence allows them to understand stuff but I talk to them like almost they were children, simplifying things for them. Or I can talk to them like I was a child myself. So maybe it isn’t AS but compensatory narcissist is what I am? But then again, I was very different since early childhood and I have problems like OCD or dyspraxia which indicate there was something fundamentally different in my brain since the very beginning.
But besides this, my life is relatively good. My big problem is executive dysfunction. I am not doing anything else than just sitting before my computer all days, reading the same things I did before. I have no work because I study and even if I did, I would have a problem with going to a shrink because it’s a small town so the shrinks would know my parents and would tell them that I visited them. My mom and her husband are nurses so they know the doctors from our town. I was thinking about going to one with my OCD before but I was too embarrassed to talk about this with anyone. Anyway I’m bad with doing such things on my very own, I’m like a kid that needs to be taken care of, really. Are there any ways to get rid of executive dysfunction? Mine is ruining my life. I just can’t force myself to do anything.
As for my most possibly being a narcissist, I am very manipulative and sadistic. I was always like that. Partially it’s just my protection against the world – I don’t want to be perceived weak so I pretend being a tough guy with no feelings but it’s also like that I do have many negative personality traits, sadistic urges and it is so since I was a young child. For example when at 4-5-6 I witnessed some events (either personally or I was just informed such accidents did take place) which are considered traumatic by people but I was not affected by them at all – just no feelings on them of me. For example my great grandfather’s first cousin whom I liked and knew well died of an old age and I didn’t feel anything but for shock which soon faded away. Also we lost some pets and I didn’t feel anything. Actually, when they were already old, I liked the thought they would be replaced by new and young ones. Also when H. died when I was 10, I wasn’t sad. Shocked, yes, but not sad. I thought myself to be a psychopath but I came to the conclusion later on that it wasn’t this case. I am very amoral (however I’m much, much better of a person now that I used to be) but I can also describe myself as someone spiritual. I believe in reincarnation.
It may sound silly but I have no real personality on my own – let me explain. When I see someone who I respect, I try to take their likings and opinions and beliefs on my own because “he/she can’t be wrong” because it’s such an intelligent person. Generally I can’t think my own opinions and stuff are interesting because I’m very used to them so there’s nothing interesting about them to me and because I don’t feel connection between myself and other people I don’t know because I can’t guess how others think about those things of mine – just the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. It’s easy to influence me with someone’s convictions and beliefs on stuff. I have my own mind but subconsciously I get influenced by others whom I consider worth of it.
I’m a perfectionist with a very low self esteem. Very. I happen to cry (I know it’s good for a little girl not an adult guy) when someone… has criticized me or just didn’t agree with me about something on the net in an online discussion. I want everything to be perfect, I promise myself many times I’ll start doing something but when I do and I see it wasn’t perfect, I resign from doing it. I destroyed all my diaries because I was afraid when I was famous and later after my death someone wanted to publish my diaries, people would laugh at me that my life was so boring or that my problems I described were silly. When someone blames me for something, even if I know it isn’t my fault, logically, I start to worry it was really my fault. As a teen I thought myself to be incredibly ugly. I even created a very handsome fictional alter ego for myself in my imagination. I live in my imagination. My external life is boring so I created a fictional reality nobody knows about. In it I am a rich celebrity dating the most beautiful women. But besides this – and bullying and solitude I didn’t mind then because I hoped for a change in my adult life – my teen life was great, I loved being a teen, I’d love to be 13-14 again. I idealize my past because I don’t remember what feelings I had before I got depression or whatever it was. I divide my life into two – before my 18th year of life and depression and after.
I depend on parents and other people. I can’t live on my own. Once, last year, I lived on my own in grandpa’s house for two months during summer holidays, it was in another city, and it was terrible. I have no idea about real life. I’m afraid to come out of our house because I am afraid to meet my elementary school friends who would like to know what my life looks like now. I contact people only via the net. I tried to sign on some aspie site but even then I didn’t fit in there. Speaking of AS, I must add that I know how to manipulate people and how to lie though I do prefer being sincere. Anyway I was afraid I could get recognized on that site. I always have paranoia one could easily recognize me on the net. Anyway I felt weird showing my true feelings to people, even as a young child, like 4,5, I did my best to hide my true feelings from people. I was afraid of recognizing me because I have a feeling I’m the center of the universe, that everybody knows who I am and where I am. I know it sounds stupid but it is so.
What do you think? Do you think then I really suffered from depression? You can ask me any sort of questions you want. I hope I haven’t committed to many mistakes in English writing this. Do you think one can have AS and be a narcissist at the same time? I would like to change. I think starting to live on my own would help me, if I started to live in a different city (or even country). My parents’ being too protective contributed to what I am now and I find it very difficult to change.
It's the very first time I ever wrote about all those things. So… what do you think of me?
Hi, Natasha :) Thank you for your feedback. It meant really a lot for me, more than I can express in mere words. Could anyone else speak their mind on this as well?
However, I want to correct some points of yours which you have made to make the situation clear.
First of all, when you said about the protests and examples of mine which I showed in my previous posts, it isn't like you may think that maybe I decline the thought I could have AS because I think I'm above any disorder of this kind. It's on the opposite, as I do hope it is AS because it's better to have an actual disorder which connects all your problems not just an unidentified bunch of many varied problems. In the latter case people think about you as about a wimp who is poor at anything, the former case meanwhile has some sort of explanation being the very core of all the problems. I know about AS for 5 years but since late 2008 I actually started to doubt I could have it wich was a hard time for me because I had already got used to this awareness, I built my new identity on AS and it was hard to think for me that out of a sudden this new identity could be taken away from me. Now my convinction it's AS grew only stronger and I obsess about the fact of my having it. There's no time when I wouldn't wonder: "do I have it?" It's a matter of uter importance for me to find this out, I don't get at all how it is that some people from AS forums can ever write that they don't need to know if they do have it or not, that for them it's enough to know other people have the same issues as themselves. I just wanted to show the reasons for which I think it isn't this. Maybe it is PDD NOS because I lack some symptoms. My AS if it is it, has such a form as it is common in females not in males.
From what I know, the core symptom in AS is inability to read social clues, lack of theory of mind, inability to guess what a person thinks, while I'm much better in such guessing that an ordinary person. I read aspies' opinions that if you can do it, you don't have AS but something else regardless of how much the other symptoms of yours can resemble AS. Social deficiencies can be caused my many things. Some people just don't have social talents, the same as some other ones don't have for example a sport or drawing talent and you don't need to have AS to be hopeless in social skills domain. As a young child I spent a lot of time on my own, just with adults and later when I went to kindergarten I was scared of other kids I didn't know, I was just paralyzed with fear at their coming nearer me.
I am a very logically thinking person so it's true I can discover their emotions from a logical point of view but I'm very intuitive too. I was like that since childhood, I only can't connect with people. I can know what people think and what kind of reactio is needed but I can't do it though I know it in theory. It's like my body and face didn't want to listen to me to express with my body language and facial features and well chosen words what I feel on this or that which caused some emotional reaction in people - the truth is that I don't feel much; almost nothing.
I get sad and feel hurt easily because I am narcissitic and I feel I don't receive so much adoration and positive feelings towards me as much as I would like to. When someone doesn't show me it enough, I feel like this person didn't like and admire me enough. But that's true that I don't understand much social feedback - I don't understand taht it is just enough of it and nobody will give me more because the thing I received positive feedback for wasn't that extraordinary to deserve it. I exhibit black and white thinking indeed - when you were nice to me, it means you are good and I like you, when you did something wrong to me, you are a bad person and I don't like you. For example once when I was 12, I asked our teacher if I could go to bathroom and she got irritated and shouted at me because she was busy and I disturbed her. She was a very nice and friendly person and I needed so deeply hurt by her that I cried in the bathroom, nobody guessed this because I was doing it silently and I wiped my eyes afterwards but I was hurt so much. That's mostly because she was always so very nice and tender and that then, so suddenly she shouted at me.
I read a lot, and this is what I mean- a LOT because I can read since I was 2,5 and that is the source from which I learnt about what people think and what they react to, this knowledge from novels is like sucked out in my mom's milk by me, so natural it is to me. Novels taught me everything I need about humans, what they feel but this is also about logic because I analyze one's emotions (not realizing myself I'm doing it) logically, I mean, behind every emotional reaction there is logical explanation of them. i don't think any people could ever take a step out of this pattern I know because I can read any pattern (maybe but for situations when people for example got intoxicated or under the influence of drugs because then indeed they would behave in a strange way). But you are right about my having a hard time with empathizing with one's natural feedback. I am easy to get offended and I was even more as a child because I have problems with understanding that people didn't ofend me but they were just joking.
I am narcissitic. It is malignant narcissm. My narcissm has 2 sources - in my inferiority (yes, in some respects I'm better than others but in many others, like the majority, well, almost all normal every day abilities and experiences I am much worse than they are) and in my sadistic urges. I meet the criteria of NPD very well. I was always the one of a kind - I felt so isolated, having no one I could rival with. As a child I even half believed I was an alien, put on Earth by my compartiots with some mission. I am totally different than people and I do obsess over myself, analyzing all my thoughts and emotions flowing through me, in their subtlest shades. As a child I was admired by otehrs because I could talk a lot and read so many things and later when I went to school, I had the best grades (later I wasn't that dilligent student any more because I got bored with learning school stuff) so I thought about myself as about someone better than others, with a destiny of becoming someone great, like a film star, a spiritual leader or a millionaire or a president of the world government.
You say you have AS, how were you diagnozed, what did the doctors ask you about?
I thought myself to be a psychopath due to my maliciousness, sadism and likings towards brutal and evil things being done to others which I liked to observe - in movies and irl as well (which behaviors now I try not to follow; I got a much better person over the course of years; I behave in an evil way only in my imagination). But when I was 11 or 12 I saw in one movie such a scene in which a boy wanting to join the mafia was given a gun to kill a man tied in a chair to show he was merciless enough to kill someone innocent and begging for help. I imagined it was me who was given the gun then and I knew I wouldn't be able to do it. Mostly because then I was a believer and thought God would punish me for this but also because I found it a bad deed. It made a HUGE impression on me, that scene. I started to suspect then that it wasn't psychopathy. As for my dealing with death, I'm not sure what you mean by my understanding the loss. I of course know a person isn't going to be seen by me any more but I just don't care. I'd prefer them to be alive but I'm not sad because of their being dead. When a person from a book dies, I'm much more affected by this, as if it was that person who was a living being once not a fictional character.
When I wrote about admiring others' point of view and taking it as my own, I meant it to be caused by me naivete - I am naive enough to believe someone who is so intelligent and stuff, just can't be wrong. The same about someone's writing or claiming somethin because I find it ttally illogical that anyone older than a child and more intelligent than suffering from mental retardation could make such a mistake while claiming something which they thought to be right and which in fact is wrong. I just feel it illogical taht anyone could say something wrong and even if a thing I just read/heard sounds dumb, I start to wonder if there really wasn't anything more about this than I thought because there could be something about this statement I didn't detect because t's impossible for me to imagine anyone could say something really stupid.
I am a very original and creative person. I am very talented with writing but I hate maths and pure sciences. I am not particularly knowledgable in details on science, I do know many, many, many facts but that is just mostly trivia or the knowledge on not very ambitious things - comic books, novels by well known writers, keeping and taking care of hamsters, etc. I, on the other hand, do try or at least did in the past, memorize some aspects of some people to repeat them. For example when I was a child there was that boy in my class who was a leader because he was very charizmatic. That boy had some kind of sweater so when my stepdad took me one autumn to a store to buy some new winter clothes for me, I asked for such a sweater that kid had because I wanted to be like him by wearing an identical sweater. I imagined such a sweater (just a normal article of clothing, nothing really special, eccentric looking or anything; a normal looking green sweater) was something really cool - just because such a charizmatic person wore it.
There are many interests that one can be into which don't include social interaction so it isn't about that. I read about many things that interest me on the net. I am addicted to the net and to reading. The best relax for me was always reading a novel. It is true the net is my safe haven, the place I can hide from others.
Thank you very much for your opinion :)
You condradict yourself too much to have a clear picture. Maybe make less stuff up in the future if you want to have honest discussion. You seem to totally live in an imaginary world where everything contradicts itself many times over. Your post is fiction, an imaginary makebelieve.
I just wanted to show all pros and contras. Natasha understood some things from my first post in a wrong way so I wanted to clear those things up, to show her (and anyone) how the truth looked like. I don't understand what you mean by making stuff up, I didn't write it just for fun, my posts aren't fake but I'm writing the truth. When you say that something contradicted itself, my aim wasn't to make things seem contradicting themselves but complementing one another.
****, I just realized I was absent minded enough to give my last name instead of my first one as a nick :( I hope nobody will recognize me.
What exactly makes you think I made it up anyway? I realize well the image of myself I presented in it is one of a total loser but I just wanted to be sincere in it. People with such weird personality do exist, regardless of if you believe in this or not.
A narc would never consider himself a loser or inferior to anyone. You don't really feel anything yet you're sad, angry and cry alot. You are "highly intelligent" yet you're ignorant and naive. You can't read social ques yet can read people. You're highly logical yet hate logical subjects. Your reply to my prodding also showed a lack of intelligence and consideration, just like now when you've read this reply.
I don't know if you've considered this but you sound bipolar more than anything and i DO NOT mean that in a negative manner. People with mental/personality/behavioral disorders are fascinating to me.
Ok, now let me explain those contradictions to make myself better understood. Now when you pointed them out to me, I can see what you mean.
As for my perceiving myself as someone worse than others, it depends from which direction one looks at it - I mean, on the one hand I perceive myself better than an ordinary person, someone destined for fame, greatness, on the other one, I would have to be blind to not see I am inferior to others in terms of my abilities to take care of myself, generally self-dependence as such, having some normal life experiences - generally in being normal. If I can't be someone great which would make a very good excuse for myself as for being different than others (famous and rich people are "forgiven" their weirdness), then I am an ordinary guy living ordinary life and ordinary people share some sort of experiences, beliefs, convinctions, ambitions etc. and here I differ from them. I discovered the term "compensatory narcissism" (known also as "shy narcissism") and it fits me. Anyway it is said that narcissism has its source in the feeling of inferiority one feels.
The second thing is that I don't feel almost anything when it comes to others, like when they suffer, it doesn't mean almost anything for me. I'm sensitive only about myself and those are the situations when I can feel anger or sadness (as for my crying a lot, I don't do it, it happened maybe 2-3 times last year, I didn't specify it. As a child or adolescent I did use to cry quite a lot - it was when parents refused me something I wanted or when they punished me).
I am smart when it comes to my theoretical knowledge. I am naive and ignorant of many things when it comes to my interacting with people (though in theory I know how the brains of those mechanisms named people work). I just lack experience and am afraid I could do something wrong and others would criticize me which prevents me from doing some things, behaving in some manner.
I can read people because I know how they think, what they should feel in some particular situations but I can't apply this knowledge in practice.
I hate maths and similar things because I'm much more into art, I have no talent for pure sciences. The other thing is that I have lacks in concentration and I can't focus for a long time on something more serious because of this short attention span.
Why did my reply show you a lack of intelligence and consideration as well? I would like to know because I really can't think of any reason you thought it.
Bipolar doesn't fit me. As much as I could sound to you as someone with bipolar disorder, you can believe me on this that it doesn't fit me at all :)
Ok... where to begin. Theoretical knowledge is a "smarter" word for "i assume". You assume to know how people work, what makes them tick but you don't KNOW. A prime example of being naive, like a child reading a book about unicorns and thinking that they KNOW they exist. You base far too much on assumtions if, as you said, you don't have experience with people. Why do you consider yourself above others when you have no experience with others? Because someone says something you don't agree with, they must be stupid? Maybe you are stupid for not understanding something as you have no practical experience with pretty much anything, according to you. How can you be into art if the world around you doesn't resonate in you? Also, what does it matter how you treat others? Go out and experiment with people, toy with them, use them and utterly destroy them as a person. There is a certain rush seeing someone break to their basics and go hysterical when the world they thought they knew shatters infront of them, making them doubt reality and their own sanity. You said yourself you don't care so why do you?
Your responses show great emotion and lack of intelligence because you understand the words but not the connections between meanings. It's like you see the trees but not the forest.
The reason i still think you atleast exaggerated in your posts is that even here, you need to be "superior" in some way. You are not.
This feeling of my superiority above others has its roots in the fact that as a kid I had no one to compare myself to. Being always on my own, I acquired knowledge from various fields and developed the ability of logical thinking. I knew more than my peers so I started to think I was somehow better than those peers of mine. I didn't know the world of their thought, had no idea as for what they thought about and their behaviors as on the outside seemed very childish to me. I started to think I was someone better, that I could use the knowledge of mine later on to become someone powerful and famous. I developed my ability to paint and write at the time other kids were just playing and I thought I could do it in the future to become famous. I just thought about myself I had the potential to do it unlike my peers and it was which was making me better than others. All my relatives were telling my parents I was so unlike my peers - that I was so mature, intelligent and getting along with adults much better than with peers. This is how it started. I do hope I'll manage to write a novel in the future which will make me famous, because I stop writing after some time and all my stories are unfinished.
When someone says things I don't agree with, it doesn't necessarily mean I think he or she is dumb - it depends on what this is about. If someone says something I don't agree with because this is an issue of one's taste, then obviously I don't think this person is stupid, I only think this person is one having a different taste than myself. For example when someone says they like guinea pigs, I don't think they are dumb but that they prefer those pets to hamsters, the animals I like and keep. Though I do have a hard time imagining how it is that someone can like something I don't like. I could think one is dumb when they would for example say that, I don't know, that X and Y should date because they make a nice couple and they would fit each other so much while I would know both X and Y as having completely different personalities, having different opinions, levels of intelligence, religions, ambitions or whatever. I mean, it would be illogical to assume such different people would really fit each other because it's similar people who fit each other, while the issue of liking something is something else because this it isn't based on anything more than just this internal positive feeling towards something.
What I meant by art is my interest in things like sculpturing, writing and painting, not as the art of manipulation as you may probably mean (if I understand you well). The art of manipulation is something I happen to try indeed though. I am not into destroying others' lives (I am malicious and manipulative but not to this extent), however I do like to play with someone else's feelings from time to time. Like for example I spread gossip once about one girl I knew that she was a lesbian or I told my cousin who didn't have father that he was a child of rape which I overheard his mother talking about this with our other cousin (I didn't and he wasn't a child of rape but I told him so). I did it just out of spite and because it seemed funny to me to observe their reactions.
I didn't intend to express any emotions in my responses unlike what you say. I just wanted to explain better what I meant. I really domn't get the connection between the meanings of my words I wrote about which you said. I realize someone reading my words doesn't live in my head so he or she could misunderstand some of my words and it was what I was going to express in my responses - my attempts to logically explain the contradictions I wasn't aware of. I also would like to add that everybody has different ways of experiencing the world and can understand another person's post in a different way, seeing subtexts some other person maybe wouldn't have seen.I didn't understand the connection between meanings thing, this "seeing the trees but not the whole forrest". Maybe I do have AS indeed?
I'm not sure how I should understand your last words - the reason for what? For my being here, you mean? No, I don't agree that I went to here to show off as someone superior but I wanted to ask others about what disorder they thought I have, thisis the sole reason and I wrote about my narcissitic traits only to show them the full image of my personality.
I was being slightly offensive and annoying on purpose. See, the whole reason for my posts was to get you to examine what you yourself wrote and be introspective about the traits your listed. Anyone can chart their personality but it takes more to examine the traits objectively. Whatever it's worth (me being a decadent psychopath an all), my conclusion is that you need to express yourself more to others, not in writing or painting but personally to others in whatever form you feel most comfortable in. You come across as a smart, shy and very introverted. Most of the things you explain about yourself are more common that you may think but i think there is a certain confusion inherent in having a more curious and aware mind because you constantly try to understand instead of accept. Go out and meet people through a common interest and enjoy life instead of being afraid to jump. The summer here in Finland (yeah, i'm Finnish too :P) is awesome but short, go out and meet new people, it will do you good.
EDIT: Even if you DO have mental problems, or a personality disorcer, don't try to medicate the symptoms, go out and be yourself.
He is inconsistent in what he's talking about because he jumps from one topic to another, in kind of an extended thought. It is a common autistic trait. I still think he is very much an Aspie. The neurotic traits he sees as narcissism, but as you said, he isn't understanding the core of what a narcissist is. I do not think bipolar disorder is likely, but I could be wrong.
Yeah, he sounds aspie to me. I can see how he could think he has compensatory narcissism, given his family; here he's got his parents blaming him for not being good with people, and over here are his other relatives, saying he's mature and intelligent. Yeah, that's not confusing at all. :P I bet he's always trying to prove to his parents (and himself) that he's a wonderful person, but always ends up getting squashed by the negative things said about him.
Dragontongue – I would like to explain that it isn’t exactly like that. My parents don’t blame me that much, I wrote about their attitude to mental health issues but it isn’t like they are telling me I should be better with people all the time. They do criticize me a lot (and I am not surprised at all, I realize I’m really annoying for them with those quirks of mine and my immaturity) but to be honest, I don’t care. For me it doesn’t matter, it’s just annoying, like flies flying around me would be. I know this is a very strange approach – to not care about what your parents’ opinion on you is, but it is like that. It’s not like I’m sad having heard their negative opinions. Anyway now I even don’t try to pretend normalcy when I’m home, I do it only among people to not make an impression of a real creep. I have some experiences with my seeming creepy to people, even when I in fact wanted to seem a cool, interesting guy to them. For example once, a couple of years ago, as an adolescent I was on a summer camp and thought it would be a chance to seem cool. I tried to talk with people about various interesting things, avoiding run of the mill topics of conversation. And one day at the end of the camp one guy started to talk with me about being a nonconformist and during this conversation he told me he never cared about other people’s opinions on stuff because he always had to develop an opinion on something on his very own, not paying attention to what others could think about this and that he didn’t care for example that… all the other teens thought me to suffer from schizophrenia. Really. He told me that it was only my business if I indeed suffered from this illness because if I took meds for it, then everything was O.K. and no one had a right to reject me because of this illness and that in spite of it I was a cool guy, he thought so, although he didn’t know me too well. I don’t remember exactly what I felt then (though I am very good at remembering such small details of talks, even many years later I can quote the fragments of conversations taking place many years earlier), I only remember that I was angry and upset to hear something like that – everybody would be. Luckily the next day we went home. I must have made a really weird impression on the teens from the camp if they thought me to be mentally ill. But I just can’t guess what other people may think of me and my behaviors, I can’t see them in a wider perspective, I can’t guess much what is a weird behavior and what is a good one, well, yes, I theoretically know it but regardless of it I behave weird and childish when I am among people among whom I feel safe and secure, like my family. My family laughs at mental illnesses – maybe not exactly laughs as such but what I mean is that they don’t treat mentally ill seriously. My stepdad said once that for him mental illness is just as dangerous as a cancer, that the only actual difference for him was that you can die of a cancer which doesn’t happen in the case of a mental illness. My family also mocked my other cousin behind her back because she was in an asylum – but here it was because they didn’t like her because of her negative personality features so were glad that at last they found a pretext to mock her; if she was a nice and friendly person they would like, they would feel bad for her.
Natasha – I didn’t realize that manner of my “jumping from a topic into another one”. I wanted to express all the traits of my personality so they weren’t expressed by me in a coherent way because I wanted to show myself from all the sides, to say so. I didn’t know it could be connected with autistic traits, though – although, maybe this is about what Hexi said (I don’t know if you said it on purpose Hexi, to provoke me to think or if you really saw such a trait in me), that I didn’t see the whole forest from behind trees – concentrating on small details. Though I do admit that although I prefer concentrating on those small details, I don’t have special problems with seeing later the whole picture either. May you say what is the core of narcissism? I found this statement of yours interesting because I always thought it’s about concentrating on oneself and this is what I tend to do but what you said indicates there is a different core of this personality disorder than I thought, what it is according to you?
Hexi – I know I have some personality disorder for sure (a personality disorder is some personality traits which occur very strongly in a person, to such an extent that it is pathological, harmful to this person – even, objectively speaking, to a schizoid who can enjoy solitude but it limits him or her – objectively – and those traits are harmful to me for sure) but no, I’m not going to medicate them on my own. I’m afraid to take any meds on my own, I was always afraid, even as a kid in my late childhood I believed that if one takes meds not prescribed by a doctor, this person can die. I know it sounds funny but well. Thanks for your posts. I know I should go out and be myself but on the other hand, being myself, showing my true self, wouldn’t be what other people would like about me. They would find me a total creep if they talked with me about some things that interest me.
Well, they don't have to say they're blaming you; they just have to criticize you a lot and let you know that they're irritated by you. Just that would definitely make you feel devalued....
Are you saying you don't feel a need to have them approve of you? I mean, I'm sure it would make your home life more pleasant. I, for one, would enjoy living at home a lot more if my dad wasn't always telling me I'm a monster. So he's basically right, yes, but I really could do without it. The more time Dad spends at home, the more weird looks I get from my siblings. :P
Anyway, if you really are narcissistic, you probably think about what other people think of you quite a lot. The opinions of others are very important to narcissists; it's difficult to carry on thinking you're wonderful when everyone around you thinks you're a loser. The opinion of one's parents is pretty important to most people. I suppose it could be that you've rejected your parents' opinions because they're negative, but I seriously doubt that they don't affect you.
So, you were trying to be cool... and ended up looking schizophrenic? That's hysterical! Ahahaha... oh, dear. You know, I tried to be cool at camp once. I told the other girls in my cabin that I had two boyfriends (sort of like a reverse Mormon), acted bored all the time, and told scary stories at bedtime. I ended up getting hit on by a lesbian. *shrug* Life is weird.
But you say you remember bits of conversations you had years ago? Let me guess--you mostly remember the bits you weren't sure about, the ones you didn't think went over well, the parts that were maybe kind of stupid.... You probably went over and over them after the conversation, analyzing everything you said, right? I used to do that. Then I realized that most people are more interested in what they said than in what you said... so what's the point in obsessing over it? Unless you say something really, really dumb, they're probably not even going to remember it.
...Of course, that is sort of your problem.... Theory is very different from practice, especially when you've got some sort of social phobia. Oh, never mind. Maybe some people just exist to make other people feel better about themselves: "Well, I might have accidentally insulted the girl I liked, but at least I didn't make as big a fool of myself as that guy!" sort of thing.
My family believes that mental illness is all in your head! ;)
Although I indeed would like them to accept my behaviors, if they don't do it, it really doesn't matter to me - it would be nice to be less criticized but if they don't accept me, it really doesn't matter to me. It would matter to me if they criticized me really a lot and very often but it would be only because I would find it annoying and irritating, not for any personal reasons. To be honest, although I know for people it's important to feel loved by parents, for me it wasn't ever a matter of any importance. I, of course, would like to be loved by them than not if I were confronted with a choice of the approach of my family to me, but that's only because then I would feel safer because in the case of any problems, my parents would want to help me and not loving you, your family in such a situation could tell you: "deal with it on your own". I do very like it when my family is glad because of something I did for them, though, and I feel happiness when I can do something for them which would be pleasant to them. It is not about my home life being unpleasant now because it's not like my parents disapprove of me a lot, it happens only when I say or do something out of the norm. Anyway when they criticize me for something, I forget about this very soon.
I don't reject my parents' opinions because they are negative but because they aren't real - I mean, they can think this or that behavior or conviction is dumb/wrong/inappropriate but because I don't perceive this in such a way as they do, I don't agree with them. For example if they kept telling me that for example my blue T-shirt should be replaced by me with a green one because it's prettier, I would reject this opinion because of the fact that I would like the blue one's looks more.
As for the conversations, I do remember those which concerned me not anyone else, indeed. I wrote about them in my first post in this fragment of it, which concerned my OCD/PTSD thoughts. I did say really very dumb things and made dumb goofs (I know that some of them aren't remembered by some people and even those who remember them, don't think about them all the time, they may elicit them from their memories when they start to think about me; they don't obsess over them as I do but this awareness doesn't help me not to worry and obsess about it. I know obsessing about it is silly but I can't rationally stop thinking about it. But it's not only about those, I remember also the bits of pretty ordinary conversations, I have very good memory for details, I always did. I even remember some of the things from the time I was a baby - like when my dad took me to his best friend living in neighborhood whose wife just came back from the hospital where she gave birth to their new babies and I remember looking myself at those baby twins and given the age difference between myself and them, I was 10 months at that time (it's my earliest memory).
You misunderstood me completely. My tone was such that would make you examine yourself, i didn't "troll" you or make stuff up. Also, there is nothing in your posts that would directly suggest a PD, why do you want to convince yourself you have one? To find a reason for being a coward? To explain why people find you odd? You really, really need to stop thinking about socializing and go frikking do it and stop thinking yourself as a creep, it makes you prject as such to others.
What do you think others would think if i went to a total stranger and started to talk about stuff like "yeah, gutting an animal is so cool. It's such a rush to look into it's eyes while you hold it down and slit his throat open, to take a life from a sentient being"? People are uncomfortable talking about anything that would make them look "odd" to others because everyone is so judgemental and need to look down on others. By that logic, everyone is a narcissist! Oh please... when the turd and fan connects and you get down to it, almost everyone will only think about themselves and that behaviour is the trutha bout humans. We pretend to give a **** and some even might, right up untill THEY have to make an effort or are in the line of fire. Most are sad, miserable creatures, bound by their inhibitions and shame, being too afraid to be themselves and our modern society is too hectic for most to look into themselves, just get some pills when you feel like shoving your kind into a freezer, that will solve it all.
I felt like ranting, so there.
EDIT: Dragontongue, you are awesome and mental illness is indeed all in your head. /nod <3
I know that you were initially insulting and malicious on purpose but I only didn't know if you told me about my not seeing the whole picture from behind on purpose as well or if it was what you really saw in me. I'm anyway really grateful to you for your making me examine myself. I don't want to convince myself about anything (I do exhibit the traits of avoidant PD), I only see there is something about me which doesn't make me like everyone else. I do think I have something inborn and it can be an ASD.
And this is which makes me think so, my traits: I learnt reading at a very young age and I have an obsession with reading, I acquire knowledge really fast (I especially like learning languages on my own, I can speak better or worse: English, German, Swedish, Czech and a bit Spanish which I started to learn recently), monotonous voice, lack of social and emotional reciprocity, attachment to items, I have auditory processing disorder and OCD tendencies, dyspraxia, something like eating disorder (it isn't anorexia but I do hate eating and I feel like vomiting when I have eaten too much), attachment to rules created by myself, living in my own imagination (the characteristic trait of it is that all my imaginary worlds come from books and movies, aren't really original, made up by myself), synaesthesia (it's really strong), some minor sensory issues (I don't think they are strong enough to be names real issues but I do have issues with touching me by someone else, feeling temperature and smells - I think I feel smells much weaker than any other person I know), attachment to deatails, logical thinking, obsessions (not as strong as in aspies from descriptions I read but when I obsess with something I can read about it many, many, many times and I am thinking constantly about the object of my interests), severe problems with planning and judging how much time something can take me, problems with reading body language, my being authoritative and a perfectionist, thinking in pictures, tics, passivity and never initiating things on my own, liking to do things in the same way and gathering big collections of things.
I know I think about myself in a negative manner and that I should open up to people more but it's as I said in the previous post - when I do it, people find me funny and strange. I don't experience the world in the way they do, things they get emotional over don't affect me. The things they find interesting aren't interesting for me. It's not an attempt of convincing myself that there's something wrong with me which prevents me from getting along with others but the sad truth.
If someone started to talk with me about gutting animals, I wouldn't find this person a weirdo but a person with sadistic inclinations. I could accept being an eccentric person but only if it was accompanied by good social skills of mine. I was always fascinated with people being different than others but only when they were good with people, charizmatic at the same time.
Narcissism is an inflated sense of self importance. You are better than everybody else, without rational cause.
In your case, this is very obviously untrue. Similarly to what I said before, you have inverted inwards to yourself as a type of coping mechanism to deal with the feeling of being alienated from the outside world. Narcissism would almost be the opposite of this; a narcissist would inappropriately brag and project himself to the outside world, as he sees himself as superior and deserving of many praise and recognition.
Agreed, Natasha. Also, i believe you obsess over your quirks and amplify them in your head. You are so afraid to be defined by your personality that it defines you, if that makes any sense to you. None of the traits you mentioned would mean anything to me, i wouldn't judge you based on such things at all. There isn't a single person without "demons" of their own, you just need to understand them, adapt and not let them be what you are.
Natasha - on the other hand, though, the tendency for narcisstic behaviors must be inborn, must be in one's disposition from the very beginning, otherwise narcissm wouldn't develop. Everybody has a different personality and would develop differently when faced with the same conditions of life - for example out of 3 siblings from a pathological family one of them in whose personality there are antisocial tendencies inborn, will develop antisocial personality disorder as a result, the other one in whose disposition there are avoidant tendencies will turn out avoidant and the third sibling will be normal; with bad memories and stuff but normal, unaffected. I had this tendency since I was little so it isn't like it's totally caused by my shyness because when I was really little I didn't have opportunities to play with peers so I didn't experience any rejection, I didn't compare myself with anyone for the lack of anyone to compare myself with. The primary source for my narcissism was my being praised constantly by adults. And later it was only fomented by my being more mature and having more knowledge than my peers when I was an older child. You wrote a narcissitic person believes themselves to be better with no rational reasons but I don't think such an ordinary person who would be just like everybody would be narcissitic; in my opinion there is always some base for narcissism on which it is based for a person to develop this feeling that he or she is more important than others. It may be something external like money or family's social position or internal, like someone's skills, intellect, abilities, possessed knowledge but it's still in there. I like to show others I can do something better than the whole rest, that I do have an advantage over ordinary folks etc., I always liked to do it but mostly in childhood; later I felt such bragging to be recognized and praised sounded too silly for me and I felt embarassed with it.
Hexi - I know I obsess over myself and that I am thinking too much about myself which is caused by the fact that I have no idea what exactly other people think about themselves and about me and I am afraid I can be really weird in their opinion. I know other people also have their problems but not many of them have so many of them as me.
Dr Robert, may you express your thoughts on the topic raised by me as well?
I have a question about one thing more - does anyone here know any ways of getting rid of procrastination, of effective fighting executive disfunction? Are there any ways to do it? Because those are literally ruining my life. I have severe problems with managing my time. I can promise myself that from this day I will do all those things I want to start doing, like acquiring new knowledge, learning somehing new, that I will do the things I should do, like cleaning my room and stuff, but finally at the end of the day I realize that I spent my whole day online reading about the same things about which I already read million times before, not having done anything useful. I am always delaying doing things I know I should do, waiting with those until the very last minutes when I have to do it in a hurry. I have no idea how much time doing things is going to take me.
Dr Robert, I saw you gave advice to other people, may you express your opinion on my problem? You are a specialist so maybe you have any opinion on my problems.