Too much emotion

This post might make me come across as a cold, detached person at first, but those of you who know me (or are in the process of getting to know me) have discovered (or will soon discover) that I’m actually have a spongy heart inside.

This post is about emotions…or rather, the excessive display of emotions by other people and how it can be either overwhelming or annoying to me.

I’ll probably get a few jeers from those of us who are trying to live down that “lack of empathy” stereotype (which really does just need to fade away already), but sometimes I find excessive emotional outbursts annoying.  This only happens, though, when I don’t know the person very well (or at all).

For example: one of my guilty pleasures is watching reruns of the “Dr Phil” show (yes, he has his arsehole moments and no, I don’t agree with absolutely everything he says, but I do find myself nodding and saying, “preach it!” most of the time.  Now if we can just get him caught up to date on the subject of the Asperger’s/autism spectrum, that would be great).

Many of the guests on his show are these people (male or female, but mostly female) who are way too emotional and “way less” logical.  As in, it’s all about them, they had never put any thought into their life decisions, and just aren’t thinking straight. 

(To be clear, I’m not taking a misogynistic or ableist bent here–not at all.  I’m not talking about people with a genuine mental illness, or any other chronic illness in which they would lack the energy to think clearly.  Nor am I referring to people who have been traumatized, such as abusive situations or anything like that.  I’m so not into playing any kind of Blame the Victim game.  And believe me, I realize that males have their loud, overly emotional moments, too – just visit any sports bar on a Sunday afternoon when the local team is playing a rival…)

But anyway, you probably know the type–“regular” people who don’t have any extenuating circumstances, who simply make unwise decisions or statements with a deficit of common sense.

These people are easily–and commonly–spotted in real life (not on TV), too.  They talk loudly, flaunt themselves and their material possessions, and they’re surrounded by drama, much of their own making.

Shrill, rapid voices–voices that are both high-pitched and loud (as in yelling) unnerve me, and when my logical side kicks in (which is fairly quickly) and it sees that the volume is unnecessary, that what is being said shrilly could indeed be said more calmly, the irritation engages.

I want to say, “dude–chill out already.  Just stop.”

Because what this type of person is hollering about probably doesn’t warrant that kind of intensity.  We’re talking here about those who make big productions out of trivial matters.

I don’t speak up, of course (except when responding to the events unfolding on television).  It’s not my business, even when they’re making it so.

But I do want to get away as quickly as possible, and I do take active steps to accomplish that goal.

If the conversation is taking place on a TV show, then at the very least, I’ll shake my head.  I might even reach for the remote control, which contains both the volume and mute buttons.  Chances are good that I’ll utilize them.

If the situation is occurring within the realm of in-person life, you’ll see me with a particular expression of disgust, the unique version of which I can’t help but to wear in times of sensory overload, especially when that overload is not necessary, if the person would only control themselves.

Broadly speaking, the NT world, in general and by comparison, comes across to me as too herd-like, too easily spooked, too reflexively defensive (or offensive) for me.  There seems to be an all-gut-instinct, no-rational-thought sort of vibe.  At times, this gets very monotonous, and equally tiring.

So do we, the people on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum, have too little emotion, or do they have too little logic?  Which, if either, is more pathological? 

We know which is more common, but does that make it “better” just because it’s exhibited by more people?  Or, during times in which we’re accused of having “too little emotion”, are we simply exercising greater control of ours?

I dare say yes–we may appear to have an emotional “deficit”, but surface appearances have a mischievous and misleading way about them.  We have emotion, all right.  Sometimes it runs deep and sometimes frighteningly intense.  But we’re usually pretty adept at keeping a lid on things.  The majority of us prefer not to draw attention to ourselves; the more overly-emotional members of the NT world don’t seem to be fazed by that idea, as they go about wearing their emotions on their sleeves.

Different strokes for different folks, I guess.  I guess I just wish that I wasn’t inadvertently inundated by their relative over-display of emotion, especially if I’m also getting criticized somewhere (by the same people) of being too stoic.

Stoicism gets a bad rap, but it can come in handy.  It’s not that I want to play the mind-game of not giving up my “hand” or making people play guessing games about what’s going on in my head.  I simply fail to see the need to broadcast everything to the entire world around me.  I find excess emotion to be juvenile and irritating, especially when done loudly.

So does that mean that people on the Asperger’s/autism spectrum are more mature?  Do we exercise more self-control?  Is our disposition only perceived as a “social deficit” because we’re outnumbered by those who think nothing of too-openly displaying those emotions?

I don’t have all the answers, but I think I may be scratching a surface 🙂


Related Posts:

Asperger’s / Autistic People Feel, Too” ~ July 3, 2016

When Asperger’s / Autistic People Appear Soulless…” ~ October 28, 2016

Distant, Aloof, … And Embarrassed” ~ November 9, 2016

The Sensitivity Yin-Yang ~ One Aspie / Autistic Perspective” ~ December 4, 2016

Autistic, Staring, and Silent” ~ January 19, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

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36 Comments

  1. Ugh! I’m with on this one. Sometimes I wonder if any of it is real or if it’s all for show. Like *Hey world, look at me*…Um, no thank you. I’ll just be waaaay over here. Maybe all the ASD peeps are the next mutation in human evolution. Maybe in 25-50 years ASD will occur 1in 20???? Maybe your neurology is better than ours.
    Dang it! You’re making me think again😕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “Maybe all the ASD peeps are the next mutation in human evolution.”

      i often consider this possibility.

      “Maybe your neurology is better than ours.”

      nature doesnt love (genetic) monoculture. at any given a time, a species can get wiped out. genetic diversity means that if the species dies, the genus and family could still have a chance.

      also not all interactions between species are predator/prey or host/parasite. a symbiotic relationship (like the very possible one that nts and nds ought to be working to establish over time) is to a species what a binary planet. its like a super-species that consists of two different parts.

      for example– most of the bacteria living on your skin are working to possibly save your life (at least your health) from other bacteria. theres no treaty, no promises– just the nature of that bacteria that you have evolved to tolerate it, and it has evolved to compete with (sometimes prevent harm from) bacteria that could actually make you incredibly sick.

      its extremely lucky that you have such a species living on your skin. but it isnt human– its another animal living in symbiosis with you. i reward and welcome these creatures by using ordinary soap (over anti-bacterial) whenever protocols dont forbid it.

      granted, the good practice of washing your hands does wash a good number of them away, but the ecosystem that results from avoiding anti-bacterial soap is still in their favor.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Yep, yep, yep…. Not only skin bacteria but gut bacteria. Other places have their own😉 I get what you mean. It WOULD be awesome if more people understood the need for diversity in everything. Waaaay too many sheeple! Another reason I’m a hermit.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Yes!! Agreed with you both, wholeheartedly!! . I often consider this possibility, too. Given the data I’ve stumbled across, it’s probably not far from the truth! Looking more and more likely. In fact, I’ve had a blog post brewing in my mind for a long time now about this very thesis lol 😂😉😘❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. i know youre speaking broadly, but i think this one might speak too broadly. there are things people do that are just assumed to be autistic things, (stimming is a great example. it IS an autistic thing, but nts do it in ways that nts find acceptable– chewing gum, dancing, leg-bouncing, pencil-twirling– and sometimes they get called out on it when perhaps they shouldnt… but its definitely more important for nds.)

    more importantly, i loathe the emotional/logical dichotomy. (i also think dr. phil is a smarmy opportunist that exploits people, like a modern jerry springer.) logic informs emotions– and emotions inform logic. “too much” isnt something youre wrong about, but some of the worst offenders are probably borderline or narcissistic, and this is a cultural problem (just saying its an nt thing make the solution almost sound biological– everybody become autistic!) thats not what i mean by “neurodiversity.” i want to fix my problems through acceptance, not putting too much on the faults of people that are different than myself.

    of course, people that want to “cure” i have no problem arguing against.

    but people who are simply different 😦 yeah, i like to be able to flee them. i dont want to demonize people just for feeling a need to be louder. i also *really* hate the emotional/logical dichotomy (did i mention that? i know, i wanted to do it again.) be careful with that one, its a misleading thing. ❤

    (youd be way better than dr. phil anyway, because youre well-intentioned, not to mention a lot smarter.)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hehe thank you luv 😘 Yes, I absolutely agree. The proper use of emotion, combined with sound logic, really do make a great pair, and both are necessary, like yin and yang 💜

      I guess what I’m railing against is the idea of unchecked emotion, especially in the absence of logic–or at least, common sense. Some people just lack sense. It’s probably the imbalance between the ginormous emotions and the nonexistent logic that ruffles me, more than anything else. And you’re spot-on about the probability of unknown BPD and narcissism. I can’t begrudge those people or criticize them too harshly; they’ve probably got a lot of pain in their past that made them the way they are; even narcissists have poor self-esteem underneath and their behavior is likely to be an overcompensation for it, trying to pump themselves up artificially, more to convince themselves than anyone else. They usually don’t realize this, though.

      Dr Phil, yeah, he’s kind of a mixed bag, IMO. He’s a fellow Virgo (lol!) so we think pretty parallel (strangely enough). He’s the only talk show I’ll consider watching, for 2 reasons:

      1 – I learn shizz-tons of shizz from his show; it’s actually where I get a significant portion of my psychological info; although I do use lots of decent sources.

      2 – He’s actually a pretty generous guy; he doesn’t just discard people after he’s used them (and I admit that that’s part of what he does) for his show; he actually pays for good care that they need, and the places he refers them to know their stuff (I’m in the industry, oddly enough–not the psych industry, per se, but the integrative medicine field, which overlaps a lot with psych conditions, since there are often biological underpinnings in psych issues) 😊

      I do know what you mean, though, and your points are well taken; the sensationalist factor has ratcheted up on that show in recent years, and it feels slimy to me ❤️

      I also don’t get how he can be so up on certain topics like lots of psych disorders, and yet still be so in the dark about ADHD and Asperger’s/autism. I don’t get that 🤔😣. Maybe I’ll write to him or participate on his message board and set the record straight 😈💪🏼🐉💜

      Liked by 2 people

      1. “Some people just lack sense.”

        they do, but i dont think thats an nt thing.

        “you’re spot-on about the probability of unknown BPD and narcissism. I can’t begrudge those people or criticize them too harshly;”

        you could, but it might be better to do it on an individual basis, rather than broadly.

        “they’ve probably got a lot of pain in their past that made them the way they are;”

        some do. others do unforgivable things anyway. id rather see these people judged on individual merits and faults, rather than as a group.

        “Dr Phil, yeah, he’s kind of a mixed bag, IMO.”

        hes a kind of bag for sure, but your wording is different than mine 🙂

        “He’s a fellow Virgo (lol!) so we think pretty parallel (strangely enough).”

        woof, i never wouldve guessed.

        “1 – I learn shizz-tons of shizz from his show; it’s actually where I get a significant portion of my psychological info; although I do use lots of decent sources.”

        😦

        “a pretty generous guy; he doesn’t just discard people after he’s used them (and I admit that that’s part of what he does)”

        this is a definition of “generous” i could not have conceived.

        “he actually pays for good care that they need,”

        good, but… geez, we really are living in huxleys world now, arent we?

        “I also don’t get how he can be so up on certain topics like lots of psych disorders, and yet still be so in the dark about ADHD and Asperger’s/autism.”

        wot, like practically everyone is?

        “Maybe I’ll write to him or participate on his message board and set the record straight 😈”

        oh no… perhaps that will finally change your opinion of him.

        in any case, i wonder how making an edu-tainment, exploitative show like his works vis a vis “do no harm.”

        not to mention simple medical ethics. i realize that you can waive a lot of things, but can a waiver make certain ethical requirements no longer the responsibility of the practitioner?

        its just dirty, imo. perhaps one day someone will convince me that its necessary for him to do what hes doing– but you know what? its sad a-f that these people are so down on options that their help has to come from being paraded around in some kind of sideshow.

        thats a tragedy.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. also, how is he supposed to drink that beer? or is he just holding it because that relaxes him? does opening it help?

    he does look relaxed. and he can people-watch from a quarter-million miles away, though its going to take some really good binoculars.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m not on ASD disorder, but I understand what it’s like to no show emotion. I grew up in a house where I taught when to smile, laugh and get angry, that when I went to school as a kid, I never knew how to react. My feelings were foreign to me, but when I look back at it as an adult now I realize it was okay. It was okay to have a poker face. Do I have to react to everything JUST because everyone reacts to it? No. Also, I found it’s away to keep people who don’t honestly want to be your friend. People go by what they see and “feel”, they forget how to just go up to someone ask some out to lunch and then hopefully and eventually become friends. I mean, little kids all the time ask other kids to be their friend ALL the time. It might be awkward, but hey effort is what counts. Reaching your hand to someone else… Plus, I don’t like it when people like to “read me”. I find it rude for people to just stand from afar and think they “know me” and then label me as “boring” or “crazy” (whenever my anxiety comes up). It also doesn’t hurt to be stoic isn’t too bad either. You wanna know what and how you plan to react once you have idea of a person or situation.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amen! 👏🏼👏🏼. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. I totally agree; those too-common tendencies irk me, too. The people who do this are so smug about it, too, like they’re on the inside of some kind of secret. It’s like, “no, buddy–you don’t have the first clue.” 🌟🌟

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I agree with many of your points though I find it a bit unnerving that you have to almost over explain your ways of feeling (i.e. – “To be clear, I’m not taking a misogynistic or ableist bent here–not at all.”) perhaps for the over emotional or those just looking for an excuse to feel offended! Either way, good read – keep up, DG.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for saying this 😊. It feels very comforting to have your support! I agree completely 😊. I’ve been quoted out of context (during the conflicts I wrote about in the posts “The Great Divide” and “Open Letter To The Recent Twits #2”, based on assumptions which themselves were based off of selective reading comprehension, and it was definitely a painful experience. Some people do indeed appear to be trying to find things to get angry with, and from what I’ve noticed, it almost seems to be borne out of an attempt to find an excuse to remain perpetually angry in general. There’s extra-sensitive and there’s over-sensitive, and although I can identify with the former, I have no time or patience for the latter, at least at this point in my life. Maybe that will change, but that’s where I stand right now. Of course, everything I’ve expressed here is my own opinion, based on my own experiences; other people’s mileage may vary 😊

      I also understand that this blog has a wide variety of readership (yay! Three cheers for variety and diversity!) and some may be pressed for time, and many of us (myself included) have genuine challenges with reading comprehension, so sometimes a message I’m trying to convey might honestly get misinterpreted. I totally get that 😊. And of course, one of the major potential pitfalls inherent in the written word is that people can’t hear the tone I’m writing in or see a wry grin on my face or compassion in the eyes, so it’s easy sometimes to interpret something in a way that was different from the intended meaning. And still others are just finding this blog and may not yet have read enough to get an accurate feel for who I am or where I’m coming from, so there’s that, too ❤️

      The over-emotional ones who lack logic, well, we can’t do very much about that 😉. There are certain people who are hell bent on finding something to get ruffled about, and for those people, that will be the case whether it’s this blog that ruffles them or something else they come across. I know that that’s on them, not me, and nobody will ever please everyone 💚💙

      Liked by 3 people

    1. Omg cool!!! Thank you so kindly! I admit that it might take me a little while to get to it (major exam coming up on Monday 3 April), is it ok if I wait until then so that I can do your lovely nomination its due justice? ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Thank you luv! 😘. I confess, all of the posts y’all are seeing right now have been pre-written and scheduled so that I didn’t bombard y’all when I wrote them all at once, and y’all don’t wonder where I went for the next week or two 💜

          Liked by 1 person

  6. I am an Aspie but my SO is not and I have learned a great deal about NT people from her.

    My current working hypothesis – based on an n=1 sample size and zero peer reviewed studies – is that NT people integrate their emotional and logical selves to varying degrees. For many, it is not at all clear where one ends and the other starts. And, to make things worse, NTs don’t seem to need to make the separation. In fact, it’s almost as if you were asking them to sacrifice a major internal organ to ask them to remove emotion from a discussion, argument or problem.

    For me (again n=1) I find my emotions and my logic not at all integrated. Feelings are strong and, as you say, overwhelming at times but they don’t tend to get a seat at the table on decisions or solutions.

    I wonder if that’s what gives Aspies our reputation for lacking empathy: we don’t integrate emotions into our processes of understanding and, therefore, don’t understand NTs the way they understand themselves.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes!! Thank you for sharing your insight! These are excellent, excellent points! 👏🏼👏🏼

      That explains a lot, actually 😊. To them, we “lack empathy”, simply because we can compartmentalize logic and emotion. But what many NTs don’t realize is that to us, since they tend to intertwine the two, they can often come across as lacking logic, from our point of view 😎

      I’m guessing we’re on the same page and that I understood your theory correctly? 😊💖

      Thank you so much for this! I like the way you think 😉💙

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely!! I’m with you, luv 😊❤️. Hyper-empath to the core! When someone is truly suffering, sometimes I’ll go into shutdown mode, especially if they’re close to me or even a very nice-seeming complete stranger 💞. It’s both a blessing and a curse at times, isn’t it? 😘

      Liked by 2 people

    1. That would rock my world!! Omg yes 😊. I’ve heard various people make rumblings about doing this very thing, perhaps as a means of support and connection in our elder years? That would be too cool! ❤️❤️

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh yeah!! I’m in the US, and many of us are in the UK, so we’ve even thought about migrating to each other’s countries! Lol. Building a little community isn’t as impossible as it may initially sound 😁👍🏽🌟💚

          Like

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