Untangling autism blog

By Out-of-Sync Woman
I struggle to get out of my apartment and go places on my own. My social anxiety is a powerful reason that affects me a lot as I have difficulty with either over or under generalizing my response to social situations. I tend to have a hard time knowing what I’m supposed to do. I have to think through the situation making my responses slower and less predictable. I haven’t memorized the typical responses that most people use. I tend to freeze and internally freak out due to worrying what to do.
 Here’s a somewhat silly social rule, when do you say ‘pardon me’ or ‘excuse me’ when you pass gas or burp aloud or should you say nothing at all? I know it depends on the situation but it’s easy to get confused and become embarrassed. Another thing that I find tough is when I’m looking around and make eye contact with someone but then worry that they may think I’m staring at them. I find this skill very hard to navigate.
My anxiety is easily activated and I don’t enjoy the experiences. I also find myself responding to others’ negative emotions by tensing up and feeling uneasy about the situation since I have a hard time with conflict. When I have a bad experience, I tend to use black and white thinking when situations seem similar without realizing this might not be accurate. After that, I have a harder time leaving my apartment due to embarrassment and anxiety caused by repeating an unpleasant experience over and over again.
I know to do that isn’t useful but it’s hard not to get stuck in the past. I wonder how much is just “me” and how much is based on the way my brain works due to my autism. Being able to untangle what’s just me from what I share in common with others on the Autism Spectrum would be nice to do. However, I believe it would be unrealistic and difficult to achieve. The good news is I have friends and people who are willing to help me find some of the answers I need to understand myself better and navigate some tricky situations with more success.
Best wishes to my readers!