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    Old 06-30-2009, 06:22 AM   #1
    personguy's Avatar
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    personguy HB User
    Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    Why do people find it neccessary to talk to a grown autistic person like they're 2 years old? I have high functioning autism myself and it is the most insulting thing that anyone can do to me.

    I'd just like to know.

    - How can I deal with it if I think someone is baby talking me?

    - What's the offical view on the subject? are you supposed to talk to autistic people like this?

    - Does anyone here do it and if so why?

    To talk about my experiances I was diagnosed when I was 10 or 11, and I did have problems. But just imagine it, if you woke up the next day and suddenly people treated you like a complete idiot for the rest of your life how would you feel?

    I felt alone. I know exactly how it would feel to be the last person alive. Almost everyone, even my parents did it. They also thought that me bieng autistic made it okay to lie to me about everything.

    This treatment was one of the things that made me severly deppressed and in the end I had the social skills of a 2 year old because that's how people treated me.

    Long story short I did manage to make things better but I had to reverse the damage done to me over more than 6 years by some people who were supposed to be proffessionals.

    My message to people is, show some respect. If you treat someone like a 2 year old they will act like a 2 year old. Help autistic people by treating them as an induvidual rather than a statistic. If they have a problem talk to them (if possible), they may even have issues none autistic related. Focus on their stengths and give them room them to deal with their weakneses, but relise at the end of the day, they are who they are.

    I have countless issues about how I've been treated over my autism this is only one of them.

    I do relise there are severe cases of autism

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    Old 06-30-2009, 11:39 PM   #2
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    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    That's a very good message, you've had to overcome a lot of bad training.

    I haven't had the baby-talk happen, nor has my grown son as far as I know. In fact, I talked to him as if he was a grown-up from the time he could talk. No baby-talk, and always assuming he had a little more understanding than he really did. He has thanked me for that several times.

    However, my family "gave" me many dysfunctional beliefs that took years to overcome, and some are so ingrained that they may never get fully under control.

    Around new people, what does seem to happen to me is this: as long as the person doesn't know I have Aspergers, they talk to me "normal". When they find out, they don't seem to know what to say anymore, and avoid me, or act as if I have some dreaded disease, or feel "sorry" for me. Pllleeeaase.... Friends just take it in stride, and usually forget, except for my periodic oddness. People who care about me won't care that I have it; people who want to harm me will use it against me. And I can't read a person well enough to know the difference. I try not to tell people about it. Things work out better that way. People treat "weird" people one way, and people with a "known disease" a totally different way. I'm seriously weird!

    Old 07-02-2009, 07:36 PM   #3
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    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    personguy that must be very frustrating. i don't know why people would talk to you like a 2 year old considering people with aspergers are often more intelligent than NTs!

    I've suspected that I've got some form of autism and that maybe my eldest son has also. my son is very shy and finds it hard to make friends. that is his stand-out symptom as far as I'm concerned. he doesn't seem to have any others. I just seem to find it very hard to relax around people and be myself. I feel like I'm always trying to do and say the right thing.

    Last edited by Administrator; 07-02-2009 at 11:00 PM. Reason: Please address the thread originator, only, and start a new thread for your own issues.

    Old 07-02-2009, 10:24 PM   #4
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    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    My son will be 16 yrs old in Aug .he has had a Diagnoses of being on the autistic spectrum since 3 1/2 yrs old. He is high functioning , however has cognitive delays as well.
    One thing that makes it very difficult for me is that he repeats and gets stuck on topics of what interests him only. He is especially stuck on dates of movies actors when they were born, or when they died. He also knows their names and what movies they played in. He constantly has to tell me how much he likes certain actors the best , and which of the same movies the best as well > I take him every Friday to rent Movies , and he rents the same movies all the time , over and over.
    His rote memory skills are through the roof, they are incredible. However, he can't tell time, or knows anything about money. however, he is quite the artist, always has been very good at that too.
    He's very picky about what he eats, but when he likes something, he will eat a lot of the same food.
    When he was first learning to talk he did not talk normally , he just would repeat the last few words someone would say to him. He did that until over 6 yrs old, then he started to talk in full sentences.
    He's always been in special ED, and still is . Everybody thinks he is younger then he really is. He is going to be a junior in H.S. however, in a SDC , full time with other kids like him.
    I do not see the differences in him anymore , until I am around other kids then I can tell just how much delayed my son is, even whn my nephew is around who is 3 yrs younger then my son. Oh well, He is my child, and I love him very much.
    I do not talk to him like a 2 yr. old ! that is very , very direspectful ! nobody should do that to anyone!

    Old 07-03-2009, 09:10 AM   #5
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    Liamsmom HB User
    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    I can only imagine that it has something to do with inexperience and lack of knowledge about the varying degrees of autism.

    My son has aspergers and is the smartest person I know. Most are astounded by his vocab skills and comprehension. When he's in school he comes home and teaches me something new everyday. His father speaks to him in the manner of a small moron which annoys both of us no end. Since he was very small I've spoken to him as if he's a peer naturally editing what was necessary.

    I correct people when they start to treat him differently, and ask if they's speak to Einstein that way. It's a fine line when he's this young as I know he needs to try and fit in with his peers and be able to manuever through life. I've basically let him know that there's nothing wrong with him he's just wired a little different and not to be ashamed if it in any way.

    Old 07-10-2009, 02:48 PM   #6
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    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    Originally Posted by personguy View Post
    I'd just like to know.

    - How can I deal with it if I think someone is baby talking me?

    - What's the offical view on the subject?

    - Does anyone here do it and if so why?
    How you deal with it depends on the setting, how well you know the person, how disruptive their behavior (not only to your day, but the productivity of everyone around you if you are in a group setting), and exactly how they are "baby talking" you.

    Talking down to people with a perceived difference is a terribly unjust thing that, unfortunately, people do when they are unsure of themselves. That is what I now think anyway. A person who speaks down to you probably doesn't know how else to behave. Maybe I am being nice by hypothesizing that, but I would like to think that it's the case. Maybe for some people things like that become an unconscious habit and they simply need to be made aware that they aren't being appropriate.

    If they are making clearly inappropriate "baby talk" (not just speaking down to you once or twice), maybe try asking them if they could speak like an adult. If they get embarrassed, good. They should be. If they are instead doing it as a defense mechanism for themselves they will not be embarrassed and probably explain. (I am a full grown adult and completely unawares to me, I often use baby talk when I am uncomfortable. But this has nothing to do with the person with whom I am speaking.)

    If it is a subtle kind of speaking down to you, as in making comments that continually make you feel stupid, or belaboring a point that you've made quite clear you understand, or being flat out rude in insulting your intelligence consistently, it would depend ...

    There's always that advice that if you become really good at one thing people will respect your skill and will treat you with more respect than they might otherwise. I don't know if that's always true. It's worth considering, but, hanging all your hopes on that belief seems unwise as you can only control the outcome just so much. Believing that advice wholeheartedly might cause a person to become depressed and anxious if things don't work out.

    I have recently wondered if maybe, in the past, when I have assumed people were discrediting me, or talking down to me, or thinking I couldn't do something, possibly they were unsure as to what I was talking about since I didn't explain myself well and I then interpreted their confusion as an insult. I am not sure this is the case but it has recently occurred to me as a possibility. I'm not sure how you can ensure offense is not intended other than ask them, but it's worth thinking about whenever a conversation seems strange.

    People talking down to me, etc., for some reason I can't fathom is one of the things I am trying to work on myself, so I do not have a definitive answer, but those 3 things are what I am trying to keep in mind for myself:

    1. Consider that they may not know how else to behave. Possibly they are doing this without awareness.

    2. Try to highlight your strengths, but don't pin your hopes on other people's appreciation of your strengths.

    3. Consider that you might be misinterpreting events, but, if they are clearly treating you badly, tell them frankly that it is NOT OK to disrespect you. (I did this once and then became good friends with the person I told off. It was really quite weird. I suddenly felt like I was in a dog pack, and apparently, behaving as if that were the case actually worked!! It flabbergasts me to this day. I would normally never behave like I did that day, but I saw a really large problem evolving that disrupted the entire balance and efficiency of the group as a whole. It turned out to be the right decision in that case, but it wouldn't be in all of them.)

    Old 08-10-2009, 02:00 PM   #7
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    Angnix HB User
    Re: Talking to autistic people like a 2 year old

    I have an interest in autism and it's sad anyone would be treated this way. I actually sometimes get baby talked myself by doctors and other people that found out I have a mental illness. It's horribly degrading to say the least. I have said out loud before "My IQ is probably higher than yours, so stop talking to me like that"

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