Autistic Confessions – I Really HATE Interruptions

If you interrupt me when I am in the middle of something I may smile at you and pretend everything is okay but on on the inside I am beginning to boil. Hopefully you will let me return to my task and finish what I was doing.

Stopping in the middle of a task creates a panic in me that is hard to justify. I just need to finish what I am working on or come to a reasonable stopping point.

My working memory is tricky, and I need to do things in a particular way so that I can keep track of all the details. I leave visual cues to help me remember things and use patterns and chapter numbers as bookmarks and signals.

I need time to switch tasks. My brain sometimes gets stuck. I never show my frustration but if you keep probing me things might get tense.

People don’t seem to understand how much I really, REALLY, HATE interruptions.  They say I am childish and inflexible. So I pretend they don’t bother me – bottling everything up.


43 thoughts on “Autistic Confessions – I Really HATE Interruptions”

    1. add is one of the things sometimes misdiagnosed as. (also ocd.) we are still in the dark ages of autism management/awareness/acceptance and its not always easy to find the right diagnosis– (especially when the primary “treatment” is to waste tons of energy practicing hiding symptoms from everyone every day.)

      that said, co-morbidity is a thing– you can be autistic and have other diagnoses. whatever “add” is (ive been diagnosed with add– a diagnosis i think is frankly a lot of hooey in my case) i dont think its entirely nonsense or made up. im a little surprised ANY young adult survived the 90s without being treated or labeled for it once or twice. a real thing– plus, a waning, once out-of-control medical fad, imo.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. What about if someone says that there is so much noise in his head, but sometimes he can think thoughts but they cannot be expressed. Like “it’s in my head but I can’t say it.” This is just one example, many others.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. since more professionals know about add than really know much of anything about autism (as if it were some new thing) if theyre misdiagnosing anything, its probably a false add diagnosis (but an accurate autism diagnosis.)

          i think of add as a catch-all and autism as an actual spectrum disorder. on paper and in medical journals its probably more “sciencey” but in practice? the majority of attention people get (and the real irony of these doctors diagnosing add) is going to be minimal– like the amount of attention fast food gets from the people making it. every time ive seen the poor (and these are people with smartphones) lined up for mental health care, it reminds me of a conveyor line– keep it moving! 2nd opinion isnt worth much now– you need 12: doctors, or years for them to figure stuff out (true story.)

          Liked by 2 people

        2. YES! I get that all the time. Its like my thoughts don’t start of as words, just things I know. I have to make myself write my thoughts in my head or have a conversation with myself to figure out how to get things into words. It is a process and I find the words and I CAN’T do it with people around.

          Liked by 1 person

  1. I have yet to master the art of the fake smile; the best I can manage is suppressing my hostility. The worst is when people try to help me at work. I know they are just being kind, but I follow a specific routine, and their “help” only disrupts it. I usually just say, “Thanks,” stop for a moment to reorganize my plan of action to incorporate whatever it is they did to help me, and reimmerse myself in the task.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Everyone is different. I think it’s great that you know yourself and what you do and do not like. So many, including myself in certain situations, don’t always ask ourselves the “why am I so pissy with this and this happens?” So those instances don’t ever truly get resolved. Good for you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I hate disruptions too. There are ones that i even know are coming but yet these still make me boil. This is this giant petpeeve of mine on days where we have to take out the trash. I gather up the trash in the household and bring mom her stuff so she can change them. After she changes the last litterbox, i am left for usually 15 to 20 minutes while mom cleans out the fridge. I cant relax until i can shut myself away in my room. That time really bothers me. Bother me while im doing something and i actually start to get pretty angry. Which scares me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I just experienced this today. Out of the blue, my blood was boiling nearly out of control due to an interruption. It took everything in me not to erupt. Reading your post showed me I’m not alone. Interesting read that brought comfort. Thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I feel this in my bones. I really hate it too. As you said, it makes me lose order in my brain of what I am saying and it disconnects me from the topic so I lose track. It also makes me feel you care very little about what I got to say.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ironically I have so much trouble with timing is conversation that I often interrupt people. Facepalm. I don’t mean to or even know I’m doing it it’s so frustrating and hard to explain. People just think I am rude all the time. So most the time I just shut up, and don’t say anything cuz I can never tell when the appropriate moment to say something is. unless I am with friends

      Liked by 3 people

  6. I love this post! It rang so true for me, too – working memory, etc. About the only difference is that I can’t hide my ire when I’m interrupted lol 🙂

    My problem is, I’m hypocritical, because I can’t help but interrupt other people sometimes! I don’t like doing it, but before I know it, I’ve done it. Not all the time, but often enough…

    Your blog was one of the first ones I found when discovering I “have” Asperger’s. I’ve been wanting to tell you that for almost 7 months now. I don’t know why I hadn’t said anything before now. But I did want to make sure to Thank You. Your blog was one of the original comforting “warm blankets” I found that made me feel less alone.

    Again, I thank you 🙂
    ~The Silent Wave blog writer

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh wow! Thank you so much for sharing! I am so happy that my blog has helped you. I really hope positive blogs are easier to find in the future. There are a lot of negative / pathological Autism pages out there. The worst part is Google indexes them first. Congratulations on discovering that you are an Aspie! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much! :). I discovered my Aspie-hood 7 months ago today (!) which of course changed everything 🙂

        After looking up the basics like traits and whatnot, I then searched for something like “Asperger’s adult female blog” or similar, and came up with yours and a few others with whom I’ve also subsequently made friends. Your blog is amazing and it was one of the main inspirations for my starting my own. I think we’re starting to get found. Just keep doing what you’re doing; eventually, we’ll trump those “other” sites 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I hate interuptions too but I have some memory issues not related to being on the spectrum. My son, however, fits what you describe. His OT recommend we give him a 5 minute warning when he needs to stop what he’s doing. It can require a tap on the shoulder to get him to look at me to take that in. When he was younger, she recommended having a flash card with the warning on it.
    She also introduced him to an emotion mgt system called Zones of Regulation. It has different colours for different emotional levels and the idea is to try to stay out of the red zone and recognise when you’re getting close in the yellow zone and to calm yourself.
    Speaking of the lad, he’s late coming home so I’d better give him a warning and get him moving.
    Take care all!
    xx Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

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