Lack of social imagination in neurotypicals

Trigger warning: contains heavy swearing

A lot is being said about lack of social imagination in autistics but I think, what about lack of social imagination in neurotypicals?

It is my experience that people in general find it easy to relate to experience that is similar to theirs and don’t reflect too much when they are being presented with something different.

For example when I say I had two psychotic episodes they may say: yes, I know what you mean, I also have mental health problems, I have anxiety.

And I then wonder: have you ever been sectioned? Did you try to transfer half of your savings to a charity that you don’t even know much about because you believed they’re protecting you? (Thank god the website wasn’t working right). Have you ever been drugged out of your house in handcuffs by 6 policemen, like a criminal and having your manager watching all of that? No, they probably weren’t because anxiety doesn’t do that to people. Yet, they dare to tell me that their experience is similar.

I’ll give you another example: when I was younger, mental illness wasn’t at all discussed in Poland, unless in a form of nasty jokes. Yet, I had it in my family. I never learned how to talk about that.

Yet, a couple of times I tried. My best friend at the time, who was so bright otherwise that she later became area manager for a bank, told me that I become boring lately and instead suggested talking about guys.

On other times, I was meant to visit my dad in a hospital in a city around an hour on a bus from my school. I found it very uncomfortable; me and dad had no relationship by the time and in general I found it very difficult to cope with the idea that he’s unable to sort himself out. I only agreed to go because my mum asked me.

But I was trying to be casual about it, and possibly also break a taboo just a little bit so I said to a couple of friends on the way to school that I’m finishing early on that day because I was going to see my dad in the hospital. One of the friend wanted to be a comedian and she said ‘a psychiatric one?’ And she laughed.

And I said: yes. How did you know?

And you know what? She didn’t even have the courtesy to say sorry.

And anyway, if it wasn’t psychiatric hospital, would it be ok for her to say that? What if he was dying after a stroke? Why did she think it was ok to laugh?

Or maybe she knew about my dad’s illness? Maybe everyone knew, or the friend, this one from the bank, who was in the same school year as the aspiring comedian, told her?

And I just somehow couldn’t make that connection, till now?

Is that what happened there? Is this how neurotypicals are like? I’m asking you, Professor Baron-Cohen and Sarah silly cow (I do apologise Sarah, I am only being particularly nasty to you to protect myself from the risk of suicide).

So you know what I started doing? I started making things up.

I started making problems up to alert people that I have issues in a way that would make it easy for them to understand. I fit it into things that were often being discussed on the news, like drugs.

I only did it a few times, when I was in my 20s. But I quickly stopped, because that also didn’t work.

What works then? Can you please tell me Sarah, prostitute, bitch, idiot Something. I really feel like I want to kick you now, you fucking bastard, before you kill any more of us.

Go and kill yourself! Now!

I’m after equal opportunities after all: if you, Sarah, think that autistic people will be killing themselves so that you could make a career out of that, go and kill yourself now because I’m after an opportunity for myself and you’re clearly standing in the way of that.

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