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Women with ASD and camouflaging

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Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby Bluebird05 » Wed May 03, 2017 9:37 am

Just wondering what everyone’s thoughts were on this whole camouflaging thing that seems to be gaining popularity? Basically, camouflaging is the idea that women with ASD are able to mask or camouflage their difficulties by studying books, TV, and magazines; imitating other socially successful peers or family members; unconsciously mimicking others; or adopting a certain persona.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby seabreezeblue » Tue May 09, 2017 11:29 am

I think that it's far more conscious than unconscious.. and I think that it can be a really effective way to reduce anxiety and uncertainty in social situations for the person with ASD, but I also think that in the long term, it's going to lead to huge issues.
If you can't ever be yourself.. then that's a real problem.

Do you mean though that camouflaging is gaining popularity, or do you mean that an understanding of what camouflaging is, is gaining popularity?
I assume the 2nd.. but thought I'd ask.


What do you think of it yourself?
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and i'll run round the moon..



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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby Bluebird05 » Fri May 19, 2017 6:47 am

I think part of it conscious and part unconscious. If you consciously imitate other people for long enough you start do it unconsciously too. Like sometimes imitating other people's accents and not even realising.

The second basically- that everyone is using the word 'camouflaging' more.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby 1PolarBear » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:26 pm

That's what normal people do. Emotional empathy essentially, at least for the mimicking part. As for creating a persona, it is called a false self if it ends up being different than who you truly are. Or just an ego or sense of self otherwise.

From my understanding people with Asperger lack the former, and usually don't create a false self just to be social. Those that do adapt socially usually will create themselves a persona, but not based on others, they tend to go their own way.

Although, it does seem that women with Asperger are like typical males in many ways, according to people. So it would be mainly when compared to other females that it would show, although some things seem to be the same. Anyway, this article talks about the subject.
https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... -in-girls/

I can see why they want to call it autism, although it is essentially normal in many ways. The unfortunate thing is that the social justice activists are all over this, so a lot of things said about this are probably not true. They won't stop broadening the definitions until there is at least an equality in the diagnosis between male and females. In reality though, they would be two pretty different problems, so it is mainly a semantics issue and a political issue, not a scientific one. And until those diagnosis are actually scientific, it is a bit pointless to argue, but yes, some women with Aspergers are socially normal like a male would be.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby WhatsMyDxAgain » Thu Jul 13, 2017 5:09 am

Bluebird05 wrote:Just wondering what everyone’s thoughts were on this whole camouflaging thing that seems to be gaining popularity? Basically, camouflaging is the idea that women with ASD are able to mask or camouflage their difficulties by studying books, TV, and magazines; imitating other socially successful peers or family members; unconsciously mimicking others; or adopting a certain persona.



I'm 45 and I can promise you that a lifetime of camouflaging/mirroring/wearing the mask, will take a huge mental toll, and it's exhausting, and at the end you will have NO EFFIN IDEA who the real you is because you've spent your life being what you thought other people expected from you in order to fit in.

Not only that, but you adopt this behavior because you're told you have to fake it til you make it, and that just leaves you feeling like a fraud and terrified someone will figure out the "real" you and be disgusted by you.

Camouflage is #######4.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby KitMcDaydream » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:12 pm

seabreezeblue wrote:I think that it's far more conscious than unconscious.. and I think that it can be a really effective way to reduce anxiety and uncertainty in social situations for the person with ASD, but I also think that in the long term, it's going to lead to huge issues.
If you can't ever be yourself.
. then that's a real problem.

Do you mean though that camouflaging is gaining popularity, or do you mean that an understanding of what camouflaging is, is gaining popularity?
I assume the 2nd.. but thought I'd ask.


What do you think of it yourself?


This sentence explains everything about why I'm in my current situation! I created persona's to deal with life so much so that I was always 'someone else' until my 40's. Only now approaching 50 when I'm so isolated with very little social contact that I don't have to be 'anyone else' constantly at work/college etc have I begun to understand my 'secret self' (the one that only emerged when I was alone, that needed to fantasize or stim to recharge before having to get back out there in the world).

I've even wondered whether I had multiple personality Disorder. I think I do disassociate but I don't know whether creating one persona to cope with the world can be classed as MPD? (although I've had 2 from between around 17 up to now)

I'm working on creating a new one to better fit my current age and abilities where I feel I can be a bit more content and a bit less frustrated that also incorporates my original persona (ie the personality I was as a child before life got so complicated and the first persona took over!) She's still in there but has been forced to be dormant for many years so I could 'fit in' and do 'normal stuff' (college/work/relationships etc)

I do alot of intense fantasizing which I've only recently discovered is called Maladaptive Daydreaming, so am hoping that can help me work through my options and allow me to live more as myself (with maybe a few useful traits borrowed from the 2 persona's (eg they both had far more confidence than my original self had - who was constantly bullied) ..I'm hoping to incorporate some of that confidence into a new me without losing so much of the essence of who I originally was. (if that makes any sense).

You certainly pay the price mentally and emotionally though always having to disguise your difficulties that essentially make you who you are. I look back now and wish I'd been able to carry on as my original self and achieve things like college and work etc as myself as it may have given me so much confidence AS MYSELF and not spending my life only been confident as other people.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby pamelaperejil » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:53 pm

1PolarBear wrote:From my understanding people with Asperger lack the former, and usually don't create a false self just to be social.


Which must then result in painful alienation and material loss of status.

-- Sun Jul 22, 2018 9:56 am --

WhatsMyDxAgain wrote:
I'm 45 and I can promise you that a lifetime of camouflaging/mirroring/wearing the mask, will take a huge mental toll, and it's exhausting, and at the end you will have NO EFFIN IDEA who the real you is because you've spent your life being what you thought other people expected from you in order to fit in.

Not only that, but you adopt this behavior because you're told you have to fake it til you make it, and that just leaves you feeling like a fraud and terrified someone will figure out the "real" you and be disgusted by you.

Camouflage is #######4.


It takes quite a toll each way, doesn't it? How much pain is the "self" worth?
previously: pleasnpetrichor, perejil

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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby pamelaperejil » Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:08 am

cross-posted:

Granted, there's a fine line to walk between being true to others and being true to yourself. How do you negotiate the compromises to your self and your value system that are necessary for functioning in the real world and coexisting with other people... without losing your identity in the process? It's no easy question to resolve. Actually, it's one of the most difficult and profound ever asked. It's no wonder people struggle with it.

On person puts it rather bluntly: Join in the circle jerk or GTFO. (Ironically, Reaper, I think it was you who said that). Another puts it more gently: Ask yourself if there's a 'tonal problem' between yourself and others. I respond: Why is it so important to sing on tone in the first place? Why can't I just express myself? Why don't others just block me if they don't like it?

There is no absolute reason, I guess, but are you happy the way you are? Are you sure? As Dr. Phil says (and at the risk of sounding kitschy): how's that working out for you? In moments of clarity I find it's not working out too well for me.
previously: pleasnpetrichor, perejil

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Very well then I contradict myself,
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby KitMcDaydream » Wed Aug 01, 2018 8:58 am

In reply to Polar Bear saying

"From my understanding people with Asperger lack the former, and usually don't create a false self just to be social"


I am now finding several sites on girls and autism where it is mentioning the development of persona's. From http://www.mindsandhearts.net/index.php ... s-syndrome


"The girl may identify someone who is socially successful and popular, either a peer or a character in a television soap opera, and adopt that person’s persona by mimicking speech patterns, phrases, body language and even clothing and interests. She becomes someone else, someone who would be accepted and not recognized as different. She learns how to act in specific situations, a strategy so successful that people may not be aware that the social abilities were a performance, achieved by intellect and imitation rather than intuition and inspiration. Girls who have ASD can be like chameleons, changing personas according to the situation, and no one knowing the genuine person. They may believe that the real person must remain secret because they fear that person is defective and must never be revealed"


There are many similar posts now just google 'girls and autism' or 'Asperger's in girls' etc Only now it seems the people who create the diagnostic criteria's are beginning to understand that girls do present differently to boys. On most sites now it mentions imagination, fantasy worlds and the creation of 'characters' to help them cope, not commonly present in autistic boys.
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Re: Women with ASD and camouflaging

Postby ArchCannon » Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:18 pm

I used to do this camouflaging thing a lot, but it got out of hand and led me to an identity crisis.
Do not recommend.
...eyes covered in pink and bleach
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