As someone with autism, and aware of my differences, one thing I’ve noticed again and again is my inability to see things from a perspective other than my own. They call it “theory of mind” in the degree I’m studying.
For example, I’ve noticed that whenever I decide to retreat from the world (for example, when I’m sick and have to stay home), I stop thinking about everyone else. It’s not even a conscious thing. I simply do not even process thoughts about anyone else. As a result, I may come across as selfish.
Remember, all that I’ve got is a brain wired slightly differently to yours when it comes to social interaction. Paths that develop naturally for most people have to be mapped through conscious learning on my part. Frustrating for me, almost invisible to you if I get it right. I suppose I could say that my mission is to be invisible :-).
I live with my fiancé, and without interacting with him and going to work, I don’t interact with many other people. I have to make a conscious effort to say “I wonder how he or she feels about this or that”, and run through a list. I haven’t stopped caring: I just forgot to think about that person.
I bring it up because it’s something I’ve noticed and am working on, to become a better person. It’s working, little by little. I actually do care how Marinus is, and tend to recognise and apologise (!) when I hurt his feelings. I’m not always accurate, but I think I’m getting better.
To all my friends who read this, if I’ve taken the time to talk to you, fear not, I care about you too. I know it may be months between conversations, but I do care. I am not very good at showing it, but I’m working on that too.
P.S. Thanks for the call yesterday, Ian.
P.P.S. I love you Marinus 🙂