The Blame Game

I have written on several occasions on this blog about people not knowing how Aspergers Syndrome presents itself. Today I am writing about people who know all about Aspergers but twist their knowledge in order to blame those of us with Aspergers when their behaviour upsets us. To me, these people are ten times more destructive in our lives than the ones who lack awareness of Aspergers as at least the latter group can be educated. The first group have no interest in changing their views. 

I should point out at this stage that, proportionately, the number of people who take this approach is small but large enough to cause problems. Throughout my life, I have come across people who behave in offensive and obnoxious ways only to say, when I have become upset by this, “It’s your Aspergers! You’re taking it too personally!” Or variations of the above sentence. From reading several online discussions based around this topic, it is plainly obvious that other people with Aspergers have experienced this too. 

I am willing to accept that I have difficulties interpreting people’s body language and I often struggle to get the contexts and nuances of conversation. However, I can tell when somebody is being obnoxious or disrespectful and, to me, using someone’s condition as a scapegoat to absolve yourself of responsibility for your own offensive behaviour is simply cowardly. Yes I am aware that I often take things personally but I am usually extremely tolerant of other people so, for someone to upset me, the boundaries have been pushed too far. This has nothing to do with Aspergers and everything to do with treating other human beings with respect and compassion. 

This attitude that any offence taken is the result of an individual’s Aspergers Syndrome is completely the wrong attitude to take. If offence is always blamed on our communication difficulties, it conveniently means that the onus is on those of us with Aspergers to “toughen up” rather than on the other person to behave in a respectful manner. People will never change their manner or their personality if there is a scapegoat they can lay the blame on instead. What better scapegoat than an autistic spectrum condition which causes difficulties with communication and interpretation? 

Of course there are occasions where people with Aspergers and people without the condition misunderstand each other in conversations and in daily life and that is something completely different to what I am talking about in this post. There will always be misunderstandings as the way we think and perceive the world is different but what I am referring to is obnoxious behaviour, including bullying. We have feelings and emotions like everyone else in this world-please respect that. If we are upset at something that has been said to us, speak to us, listen to our answers and try to understand why we are upset rather than just blaming our condition in a bid to dismiss our offence as not real or worthless. I would never do that to you so please treat me and others with Aspergers Syndrome with the same respect.