Since I came to Canada, many people(from different cultural backgrounds) have told me that I was very likely to be autistic. Some of them are complete strangers who just know me online because we are in the same chat group. Some are closer and know me in real life . And many of them already have ASD diagnosis and told me that my “signs” were much more obvious than theirs.
Signs that indicated I was on the spectrum were Communication, Social, Sensory & others.
Communication: Others told me that I always make the conversation about myself and my interests(I'm already conscious trying not do that but still …), take words literally and ignore most nonverbel cues. Even when chatting in my native language I often fail to tell when others are mocking me or annoyed by me or I talked inappropriately until someone explicitly tell me so. My style is very straightforward and rational and “unusual for my age”. Now in university, I still often have to ask my NT classmates if the professor is being serious or just joking in order to understand assignment instructions. I hate eye contact, only started to force myself doing so after learning that not doing this brings a lot of negative consequences. And I still avoid having eye contact whenever possible, and physically not able to do that when I’m tired.
I stim by combing my hair with hands, rocking and jumping. I was disciplined throughout the entire elementary school for rocking chair since it’s “bad manner and disturbing” but I still rock today, and when I watched a video in which a non-verbal autistic girl rocks I realized that I do the exact same.
I enjoy writing down hundreds of names from one of my areas of interest in an order of generations or geographical locations, and repeat doing this again and again. I'm also sensitive to dates. My interests are all very intense though they can change from time to time. This intense interest makes me learn related stuff quickly. Most of them are unusual for my demographics, like enka.
My empathy is also very limited. My reasoning may tell me that you feel bad, but I don't know how bad feels. It's just a word with 3 letters and I know it is negative. Again negative is a concept hung up high somewhere in the sky. I'm kind so I hope you don't feel the negatives. Occasionally I can feel the “bad” itself, on average less than once a month, often with the assistance of music or my love towards someone. By the way I can only either have intense friendship or barely feel any emotions at all, just like how I feel about my interests.
- A debilitating condition. An “illness” whose patients do not speak and have severe developmental delays.
- “Children from the stars” as portrayed on media and by some advocacy groups. Similar to 1 but with more adorable characteristics like “having a pure heart”.
- Silent or weird genius, cannot social but especially talented in certain ways like math or music.