Picture this scenario.
Tom and Brad have been friends for their entire life. They are the same age, both adults, and work together. They are in the middle of a conversation that has been going for almost 30 minutes during their lunch break, both are talking animatedly and both are clearly comfortable.
With about 20 minutes of lunch hour left, a work colleague who is a friend of Brad approaches their table and joins the conversation. But now only Brad and their colleague are talking. Tom has become quiet, withdrawn, and speaks only twice in the next 15 minutes, once to say goodbye.
If this is a scenario familiar to you then you'll appreciate that Aspergers Syndrome in an adult can result in some complex emotions arising out of even simple social situations. At times speaking to one person seems fantastic, but when an unknown quantity is added to the equation feelings of shyness and withdrawal take over. Worse still, often this creates feelings of frustration (why am I being so quiet?) or guilt (they think I don't like them) or self doubt (even if I did speak, I'd be forcing it and I'll be ignored). There can be a prevailing sense of needing to explain yourself, but not wanting to, or being unable to. The reality is, you shouldn't have to either.
Coming to terms with this type of predicament becomes far easier when considering whether the issue is not one of shyness, but a lack of control. An unfamiliar person creates a situation of uncertainty. Being in unfamiliar territory can feel uncomfortable. Which ever way you approach it, the issue is one of a lack of control creating unwanted feelings.
But since adult Asbergers sufferers can't always control their environment, what can be done? A huge advantage is being able to recognize the reason for feelings of anxiety, shyness or a sense of withdrawal for what they are, and why they are causing a certain response to a particular situation. Being able to consciously accept what is happening and understanding why you are reacting a certain way to a situation can at least provide some internal control. The next step is being able to actually use that internal control to help express yourself externally the way you want to, rather than the way you might otherwise do.
Want more information? Before spending thousands in consultancy fees, be 'in the know' by discovering insider tips about the recognition, diagnosis and treatment of Aspergers Syndrome Here