Coping: A Survival Guide for People with Asperger Syndrome
Humour and conflict
- An autistic person's sense of humour is often about things
which suggest silliness, ridiculousness or which appear slightly
- It may be necessary to keep your laughter to yourself when
there is something which is funny to you but not as funny to other
people. Laughter is one of the best feelings in the world and to
have to hold it back is a nuisance but nonetheless to laugh at the
wrong times may annoy other people.
- A non autistic person's sense of humour is often to do with
finding clever ways of pointing out faults in other people and
causing them embarrassment. Everyone is a victim of someone else's
humour at some time or another but some people are made to suffer
more than others. Sometimes non autistic people can get quite
ruthless with their humour. This is especially true amongst
teenagers and younger adults who are perhaps less likely to care
than older people.
- In the eyes of many zoologists, humour is a human replacement
for the violence which animals use on each other to establish an
order of dominance (the pecking order)
- No-one talks about the pecking order of which they are a part.
- Many gangs or groups of people are not particularly welcoming
to outsiders but some are more welcoming than others.
- Often, the reason two or more people gang up on one person is
because it gives them a feeling of being united together. For
reasons such as this, it is often easier to talk seriously to
people if you can find them on their own.
- If you say or do something that can be misinterpreted into a
sexual context then it probably will be a joke, often at your
- If you are a victim of someone else's humour, it is often
possible to translate it (in your own mind) into constructive
criticism and then it might be personality building.
- If a joke aimed at you is not too harsh it may be a good idea
to laugh at yourself.
- If a joke or some sarcasm aimed at you is too harsh,
you can say 'what do you mean by that', 'why did you say that',
'what's that supposed to mean', or 'that's not very nice'. You may
have to use your discretion in order to choose a suitable answer
but putting someone else on the spot can be quite a good defence.
- If a joke or some sarcasm aimed at you is downright hurtful,
here is a last resort you can use. Calmly say that you found the
joke hurtful and ask if it was meant to be hurtful. If the other
person says 'can't you take a joke' or messes you around in some
other way, stick to your guns and just calmly ask them again if
they meant it to be hurtful. If they answer 'no' then you have got
what you needed. If they answer 'yes' then calmly walk away and in
future make it very difficult for that person to talk to you until
they apologise of their own accord.
- Questions are often a much more powerful form of defence than
- Remember that people who put you down unfairly and without
purpose are often feeling weak in themselves and are mirroring
their own feelings of weakness onto you.
- If you wish to join in and make jokes at the expense of other
people, bear in mind the following:
- Try not to make your jokes hurtful, even if other people
do. People who do this are usually in the wrong.
- Try not to aim your humour at people wittier or funnier
than yourself because they might retaliate and will probably do
better than you, causing you to lose face. It is the verbal
equivalent of picking a fight with someone bigger than you.
- Also try not to aim your humour at people quieter or more
shy than yourself. It is the verbal equivalent of bullying or
picking a fight with someone smaller than you.
- Don't make jokes about people's mums or dads unless
everyone else is. To make jokes like these at the wrong time
can make people violent towards you.
- Try to avoid laughing at your own humour.
- Comedy is not just about playful confrontation, it is also a
very clever way in which people can accept the tragedies of life
without getting depressed. 'If we didn't laugh then we'd cry'.
Coping: A Survival Guide for People with Asperger
Getting the best from this
Looking on the bright side
Distortions of the truth
Humour and conflict
Sexually related problems and points about
Finding the right friends
Keeping a clean slate
Living away from home
Jobs and interviews
A Personal in depth analysis of the