Things that I thought were social anxiety but turned out to be autism

I‘d plan out social situations in advance, so I didn’t mess them up. /1 

I pretended to be somebody else whenever I was around other people for my safety /2 

Not knowing when to join conversations and by the time you’re about to contribute, the conversation has moved on. /3 

Laughing along to fit in socially without actually understanding the joke. /4 

Not understanding why people were laughing when I said something that wasn’t intended to be funny. /5 

Not giving the ‘right amount’ of eye contact, regardless of how good/bad my anxiety was. /6 

Avoiding social events because they are draining and require significant effort to engage in small talk. /7 

Only picking up prearranged phone calls, regardless of my anxiety levels in the moment /6 Scripting what you are going to say in future conversations, so they go well. /8

 E.G. I always plan what I’d say to colleagues about what I was doing at the weekend. As doing nothing apparently makes you dull. However, you’re actually doing nothing to recover from the week. /9

 Drinking to cope with long-lasting social events. I wouldn’t have to think about how I should be acting socially after a few drinks. /10

 Lie about the true nature of my interests/intensity of my interests as I knew people wouldn’t think I was ‘normal’ and receive a lot of negative judgement if I was honest. /11

 Misunderstanding other’s during social interactions, no matter how hard I tried to understand them, I was always just made to feel wrong. /12

 You’ll piss people off and they often don’t make it clear why. Leaving you paranoid. /13

 I always struggle to respond to questions when I’m put on the spot and it can take a lot of time to think of my full response. /14

 For context, I was diagnosed in my mid-20s. /15

 If you enjoyed this thread or like my writing, I’d be forever grateful if you could buy me a coffee (or tea in my case)

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