Socially Retarded for Science!
I’ve been feeing irritated again with my inability to interact naturally with people, and of course I wanted metrics quantifying the phenomenon. So I headed over to Wrong Planet and stocked up on tests.
The Broad Autism Phenotype Questionnaire gives me 123 aloof, 92 rigid and 97 pragmatic.
You scored above the cutoff on all three scales. Clearly, you are either autistic or on the broader autistic phenotype. You probably are not very social, and when you do interact with others, you come off as strange or rude without meaning to. You probably also like things to be familiar and predictable and don’t like changes, especially unexpected ones.
The Autism Spectrum Quotient comes out at 34, and “Eighty percent of those diagnosed with autism or a related disorder scored 32 or higher.”
The Empathizing Quotient and Systemizing Quotient puts me at 10% empathizing, and 75% systemizing, which makes me an “extreme systemizer.”
The important factor to consider is not your absolute scores, but the difference between the two (EQ - SQ-R). This indicates whether you have more natural ability as an Empathizer or a Systemizer. If your scores are about the same for your EQ and SQ-R, then you have well balanced empathizing-systemizing capabilities. If you are an Extreme Systemizer, you might have AS or HFA.
The Understanding Facial Expression Test was pretty hard, and I managed to guess 24 of them, considering several of them just looked like blank eyes to me.
The Face Blindness / Prosopagnosia Test was tricky, but I managed a 72%, which is right between the 65% of someone considered face blind, and the 80% average. I’m not sure where that puts me, but I’ve always had mild trouble with faces, so not entirely surprising.
And of course, the Emotional Intelligence Quotient test says of my 63 score:
According to your self-report answers, your emotional intelligence is very poor. People who score like you do feel that they have trouble dealing with their own emotions and those of others. They struggle to overcome difficulties in their lives and they are unable to control their moods. It’s hard for them to understand how best to motivate themselves and reach their goals. In addition, they find social interactions quite difficult, for several reasons. They may have trouble allowing themselves to get close with others, finding it difficult to be vulnerable enough to establish intimacy. They also report having trouble offering support to others, likely due to the fact that they do not understand where others are coming from or they lack ideas about how best to help. Perhaps by working on your problem areas, you can become more confident in dealing with your own emotions and those of others.
This should come as no surprise to anyone who actually knows me. It just frustrates me that I never really got any help as a kid, when it may have actually done some good. Keep in mind that this is all after I’ve spent decades watching other people and trying to figure out ways to interact with them, like I’m an anthropologist or something. At least now I’m not so oblivious that I’m flubbing normal social routines. But that’s life from the fringes.