By Clara H
For me, questions with opinion-based answers are harder to answer than ones with fact-based answers. Let me explain: a fact-based answer is something that everyone could agree on. Math problems are usually like this. If I get the answer wrong people will just tell me without being rude about it. Even if they do happen to be rude, at least I'm not surprised that my answer was incorrect. On the other hand, questions like, "What do you want to eat" is opinion-based. My answer may be different than someone else's. They could be disrespectful about my choice and say something like, "How can you possibly like that disgusting food?" If there is a wrong answer, let me know so I can prepare for your comments that could be hurtful.
I prefer if you'd give me options so it's easier for me to decide. It would be even better if you wrote down my choices if I have more than two things to pick from. This way I don't have to worry about forgetting the options you gave me. I'm sure this technique could work well with those who have difficulty with spoken communication as well so they can just point to which one they want. If I am still having a hard time choosing, try asking me which one I don't want. Sometimes that question can be easier and it limits the choices down.
Even when I'm given visuals to help me decide it can still be a struggle. I often find myself analyzing each option and sometimes if given enough time I may do research. I'm always overthinking things and constantly wonder if I'd be a bit happier with one over the other. Questions I might ask myself are, "What are the positives and negatives of each choice?" and "What if I'm disappointed with my decision?" It's helpful when you help me decide. I appreciate it when you talk each thing through with me. Consider sharing with me what you think of each option.
Once I make my choice I may regret it. I think to myself, "Was that the best answer?" Even when I go to bed I struggle to fall asleep because I can't stop thinking about whether or not I made the right choices that day. "Could I have changed my mind?" I find myself asking. If I can change my answer to a question please let me know. It makes the whole decision-making process way easier by taking off pressure.
People have mentioned that to them it seems like I take longer than average to answer questions. The problem is that I don't know the amount of time it should take. No one has ever given me any specifics. If someone gives me a time limit maybe I could decide in the same amount of time other people do. I'm not exactly sure if it will work because no one has done that with me. How do other people know when the appropriate time to respond is? Were they just born with that information in their heads?
I'm assuming it has something to do with long pauses which can make conversations awkward to most people. I guess it makes people feel more comfortable when conversations move at a quicker pace which I have no idea how they can think that fast. I need time to process the information. If you ask me a question and I respond right away it usually means someone has asked me that same thing in the past, well, unless it's a question like, "What do you want to do?" because that answer changes over time.
Not knowing is a natural human thing. It applies to everybody, not just atypical people. Before I started writing this I wasn't sure what to write about so I asked my brother if he had any ideas and he said, "I don't know" (which is where the title came from). My brother is nearly the exact opposite of me. The two of us have different interests, different talents, different hobbies, different looks, and not to mention he's way better at socializing than I am. My point is, no matter who you are you don't always know what to say. So does the amount of time really apply or does everybody just act as it does?
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