Home HOT EXCLUSIVES So you want me to stop being awkward, do you? A self-help guide for “normal” people

So you want me to stop being awkward, do you? A self-help guide for “normal” people

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I have Asperger’s syndrome. You might not know what it is and I certainly don’t have time to explain it all to you, but in short, it means I am on the autistic spectrum and I am socially much different to you. In fact, social experiments frustrate the hell out of me. People mean well, they say. Who are “they”? I’ve never met them, have you? I would like to so that I can at least ask them where they learned all the advice they give to socially awkward people like myself.
Be present, they say. Do you understand how stupid that sounds? Aren’t we all present when we are in the same place? Oh, you mean that I must try to look interested in what the other person is saying? How does one look interested? I never learned that facial expression. And by the way, when I am in a room and there are lots of different noises, my brain shuts down. I cannot focus on anything. Which brings me to number two.
They say we must focus on the other person. I’ve done that with a girl once. I focused on her. Well not her eyes, I never look in the eyes. I focused on her breasts and wondered how they feel. Are they squishy? I focused so hard and for some reason she called me a freak and before I knew it my dad had to fetch met at the police station.
They say one must act as if you have great social skills. They say this because research shows that smiling makes you feel better. So one must smile and feel better. I don’t understand this. When I pull my lips upwards, people look at me funny. And why don’t I feel better when I smile like you taught me?
Put yourself in social situations to improve your skills, they say, and then reflect on what went wrong afterwards. How should I know what went wrong when I don’t know what went right? What is wrong really? And how will I know that it went wrong? When I end up in a cop’s car again?
Team up with someone more socially skilled, in other words make a few close friendships. Haha. How exactly do I get even one person to like me? And why would someone popular hang out with me? Anyway, I find popular people very boring. They don’t know anything about airplanes or trains, they don’t know what happens when sound waves reach your ear and they have no interest in black holes. Why should I talk to them and what are they going to teach me?
When I become president I am going to find “them” and I am going to take all their advice and feed it to them and then I am going to let them sing for me at the dinner table. In the nude. I won’t watch, but I hope they feel awkward socially then.
(The author has an Aspie son who has been known to growl at people during a conversation for no reason at all)

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