The extrovert Aspie - the curly hair project
I’m an extrovert Aspie. You’re a what now? Yes, you read it correctly, I’m an extrovert Aspie. Now I can see you all frowning at your screens. Isn’t autism supposed to be all about being shy, and not talking to others and such? Indeed the common belief is that women with Asperger’s Syndrome tend to... Read more »
(this is still one of my favorite posts about being autistic, and was huge in helping me understand how it worked for me. I don’t have all of these – like, I’ve worked long and hard to learn social boundaries, but that doesn’t mean I’m not autistic, it’s BECAUSE I’m autistic.I don’t have #6, because I was lucky enough to have the same 30 kids in my class throughout elementary school so I got to develop close friendships with a small group of other people. When I still had active social anxiety, a lot of this was drowned out by that, but it has shone through since then.)
1. They are not shy and will smile at people, even at strangers.
This is something I do quite often. Even though I will not always understand how to make contact with someone, or what to say, I will smile at random people. But since I don’t have the social knowledge other people may have, I have been prone to smile at people at social situations where smiling was really not acceptable. The extrovert Aspie will still smile as she does crave the interaction, but doesn’t know when it’s not ok to smile at people.
2. They love talking but often miss social cues and tend to talk too much.
The extrovert Aspie might be regarded as the chatterbox, as someone who never shuts up. It’s very hard to get a word in edgeways, and they might not leave room for others to express their opinion or voice their feelings. The extrovert Aspie female may be experienced as tiresome company, because she can keep rattling endlessly about certain subjects that are of interest to her. It will be very hard to interrupt her, or even try and change the subject, as she will show clearly she’s not interested in it, and might even go look for other company when the subject is changed.
3. They have no social boundaries.
The female extrovert Aspie might not understand when it is ok to talk, or to interrupt, or to smile at people. I will give you an example out of my own life, when I was about 12 years old:
My great-grandmother had passed away, and tradition here in Belgium states you have to go offer condolences to sons and daughters who are standing in a separate room together with the coffin. Rather than offering condolences, I smiled and talked about the temperature in the church.
Not having social boundaries also means this Aspie might talk or act in a certain way, when others feel she should be more reserved. In the case of my example, I lacked social boundaries and social rules.
The female extrovert Aspie might feel it is ok to talk to anyone, invading others in their personal space. They come very close very fast, and this can be experienced as very threatening.
4. They will jump in immediately in any social situation regarding their special interest.
No matter where I am, if I hear anything regarding my special interests, I will jump into the conversation. This can be with total strangers, or with people I know. This can be experienced again as very threatening, or as a very strongly oncoming personality. Some people will refer to the extrovert Aspie as a ‘know it all’ or a meddler because they are always interfering others when talking.
5. They might be regarded as weird, eccentric, odd, or annoying.
Rather than the introvert female Aspie, the extrovert has a very outgoing personality. This means she might use clothing as a way to express herself, mixed with crazy hairstyles, and a lot of verbal communication at most times. This way she shows her quirky side, or her awkwardness a lot more than her introvert ASD friend.
Let me illustrate this with an example. I have a very eccentric way of dressing, and interfere a lot in people’s conversations. A fellow student told me, towards the end of the year, that at the very beginning her first impression of me was that I was weird, an attention seeker and awkward. It was only after she got to know me, she realised there was a lot more to me.
In classes where a lot of debate was going on (which I loved, debate = interaction) and I would state an opinion, a lot of time my fellow classmates would sigh, or even bluntly tell me to shut up.
6. They love people and crave interaction but lack real friendships.
As much as I need to be a hermit, I do love to talk to people. I’m a natural when it comes to being verbal, but I lack real friendships. The reason for this is that I mainly talk about my special interests, interfere when others are talking, come across as odd or annoying, and tend to cancel plans last minute due to an overwhelming amount of stress or anxiety. All of this makes the extrovert female Aspie a tough friend to have.
7. They talk more than listen and tend to interrupt when others are speaking.
Most Aspies have issues understanding when it is their turn to speak in a conversation, and what to talk about. The extrovert Aspie will interrupt as soon as a thought occurs in her mind, and she will not wait until it is her turn to speak. This may mean she will interrupt people mid sentence because she thinks of something, and then will endlessly talk about it. This makes it very hard for others in the conversation to voice their opinions or feelings.
8. In groups or at group assignments they tend to take the lead role.
Because the extrovert Aspie loves to interact, these things are a dream for her. By taking the lead she has control over the situation, and can manipulate the situation to match the scenario she has in her head.
She might also feel that by taking the lead role, she is the centre of attention and will be able to interact the most.
9. They are not afraid to speak in front of crowds, as they consider this a form of interaction.
Extrovert Aspies can usually speak in front of crowds, and what is more, love to do so. It ensures them of a form of interaction with others, without having to worry about what they may think of you. Speaking in public means you are discussing a certain topic, and as those often are related to the special interest of our extrovert Aspie, she will feel right at home talking about this subject. They can indeed be very passionate what they talk about!