Autism and eye contact my thoughts
Being an adult growing up where Autism and eye contact is demanded
I have always felt uncomfortable and nervous.
For some reason, I would get that nervous
I’d laugh and couldn’t help it.
sitting there laughing while you have an angry parent
trying to explain that what has happened is not ok and why!
But if you’re like me,
you find something to look at other than having eye contact
and burst into uncontrollable laughter for no reason at all.
Cue miffed off parent!
and people passing by with their judgmental eyes clawing at your skills as a mother.
The child doesn’t mean to be like this it’s an action that has happened and they can’t control it.
How I feel Being a parent of Two Girls On The Spectrum
As a mother now, I realise what my mum and dad must have gone through.
The stories they would tell of my behaviour.
It must have been a thing I blacked out most of my childhood as I don’t recall much of what they tell me.
In town, I would start to act up
so my dad’s friend got me and put me in the back of his car while I went mad and let off steam,
I do not remember this!
Learning how to fit in
So with the maintaining eye contact as an adult,
I have learned to try to hold a gaze to show that I have acknowledged what they need from me in conversation.
Yet if they seem to get put off by me breaking it.
when I say I find maintaining eye contact very hard and that I’m sorry if I seem offensive.
Seeing how my girls are now I can foresee the challenges they face; as did I.
This has allowed me a better understanding that I can help them by making eye contact earlier on.
To show that what they’re involved in is interesting to them and help with their focus
autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is very hard to stay focused for longer periods of time
and with making eye contact less fearful as they grow.
Autism and eye contact
Asking KK what makes Autism and eye contact is so hard to maintain?
she said she finds it hard and uncomfortable to maintain eye contact it’s not easy to keep a focus on one thing at a time.
My friend Lou said I have to force myself to make eye contact It feels uncomfortable, makes me feel uneasy. It just feels that people are looking right into my soul when I make eye contact and I misread signs. I go almost childlike especially when talking to men, acting silly and getting all giggly
For my son eye contact, on the whole, hasn’t been an issue as it is for some people on the spectrum.
As an infant, he wouldn’t look at us.
This meant that the normal learning through facial triangulation was considerably delayed.
Smiling, laughing and the first chatter infants don’t occur till a lot later.
What has distressed him, however, is being looked at when he is overwhelmed or having a meltdown.
He can become very verbally aggressive with people he is not familiar with and within the family,
he can be physically aggressive at times.
We recently discovered from him, looking makes him feel embarrassed and under scrutiny.
He is aware of his differences to his peers and whilst he can’t control his outbursts,
he doesn’t want to be judged on them.
Eye contact for a neurotypical person is a way of understanding a situation,
reading the subtle signals we all give off.
Autism and eye contact With a person on the spectrum its too much information to absorb along with the smell,
sights and sounds, we as NT people ignore.
I completely understand why it would be hard for them.
Autism and eye contact, The reason I don’t like eye contact is it feels like they’re dominating me.
It’s also distracting looking at someone’s face.
I can’t interpret the emotion behind facial expressions very well.
so I get anxious trying to work out how someone is feeling if I maintain eye contact I find myself stressing
trying to work out what tiny minute facial movements mean.
If I look away I can focus on the words and tone of voice that I find easier to decode and decipher emotion from. Back to the dominance thing, in dogs, eye contact is used as a tool to show dominance.
Alpha dogs will start a staring contest with lower dogs and the dog that looks away first is the weaker one.
Just an interesting insight into how animals use eye contact Oddly, I can maintain long eye contact with my dog if he lets me.
He sees me as alpha so often looks away first but his eyes are scary.
His gaze isn’t uncomfortable.
many people when being assessed for Autism and Diagnosis have eye contact
as a RED FLAG read about our assessment day HERE