If I was a different type of person, I'd probably find it quite patronising but in my case, I don't mind it and I even find it helpful at times. I know a lot of people on the spectrum who react quite differently, greeting this type of treatment with anger.
Getting frustrated with this treatment is more or less the same as being a feminist and being frustrated with men who open doors for you. You may find it offensive but the people who are doing these things for you generally mean positive things.
How are we detectable?When I was younger, I used to assume that people knew about my hearing loss and were simply helping out. I remember having to say to my teachers at school, “I'm deaf, I'm not dumb”.
Recently it's begun to dawn on me that this isn't deafness, it's not even knowledge of my place on the autism spectrum.
It's simply the “vibes” that I put out. The social ineptitude, my poor co-ordination and my introverted body language.
Detectable body languageAs I’m always repeating, “everyone on the autism spectrum is an individual”. Things which are particular for me may manifest quite differently for others - if at all.
In my case, I came to the conclusion that people were adjusting differently for me during “boxing”..
Last week I was boxing with someone who was obviously pretty good and someone else who was clearly a beginner. None of us had spoken to each other prior to the boxing so the only clues that we had about each other were from observation.
I noticed that the inexperienced boxer was often missing his cues or hitting with less than perfect form. Mine was better but of course, the experienced boxer was extremely good. What was interesting though was the that the experienced boxer started to help me out, giving me cues, tips and nods while he ignored our very inexperienced companion.
I’ve also noticed, over the weeks that I’ve been doing boxing, the instructor has been much more encouraging and interacting with me than with my peers. I’ve noticed this in other classes at the gym and in other areas of life itself.
There’s something in my body language that says that I'm naive or perhaps “different”. I don’t know what it is but I know for sure that it’s there.