Text and images are copyright 2009-2013 Matt Friedman. All rights reserved. All characters are fictitious; any similarity to actual persons is purely coincidental.
Asperger’s is not a disease, it is a genetic variation and a neurological condition. Though I’ve just recently discovered I have it, I always have and always will. Some say it is a gift, and even vital to human evolution.
Asperger’s is sometimes called Wrong Planet syndrome. This is because we feel like we come from a different culture and have a different way of perceiving the world – (Tony Attwood)
Once I learned what Asperger’s is, I knew it described me. It answered a lot of questions and explained why I am the way I am. So it was kind of good news! Like finding a box I fit in.
Now for some myths and facts: First, I will not look you in the eye for long periods or when I’m talking to you. This is not to be rude. It’s because it is the only way I can concentrate on what you’re saying.
In social situations, I don’t process information as fast as you. Facial expressions, gestures, and tone of voice all convey subtle information to our brain. The more people who are present, the more info there is to process.
Sometimes we have super-senses. This makes us easily distractible to background noise, a sudden loud noise, or unpleasant odors.
We usually have special topics or hobbies that we like to pursue with intense concentration and on our own. Examples include trains, foreign cultures, and washing machines.
Are there advantages to being an Aspie? Yes! We are honest, detail-oriented, good listeners, and have a unique view of things. Often, we achieve high levels of success in our special interest area.
So that is a glimpse into my world. I hope it has helped you better understand me and others like me. We are all different, and with all differences, knowledge brings understanding. If we understand each other, then there won't be any need for a right planet or a wrong planet.
If you liked Matt's work, be sure to hear his story and learn more about the Dude, I'm An Aspie cast and crew. On Saturday, February 2nd, Karen at Autism Empowerment Radio had a great interview with Matt Friedman. If you haven't yet listened to this show, it has been one of Karen's favorites and one of the most popular Autism Empowerment Radio shows of all time: