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Autism in the workplace

BarrettdBarrettd Posts: 14Member Connected
edited March 2019 in Autism and Aspergers
my son keeps copying other people in the workplace even though they are staff that leave early.
 He copies people if they are on there mobile phones its a case if they do it I am when they are told stop  then I will. He has had a few fall outs with other staff through misunderstanding.
is this normal social difficulties with some one with aspergers?


  • GeoarkGeoark Posts: 1,222Community champion Pioneering
    Hi @Barrettd yes this can be a common problem.

    Usually staff will understand when they can get away with something, or at least think they do. Often though people with autism will be a lot less discrete and likely to carry out the behaviour in plain view. 

    It is also unfortunate that they will often copy the behaviour which allows them to do what they would prefer to do. 

    Before anyone jumps on me for saying this, it is not always the case. My daughter  has a fantastic work ethic which makes her popular with her management and colleagues. I have also worked with people with aspergers who have had great work ethics and made good role models.

    Unfortunately because of the way they view things when they are pulled up for doing the wrong thing they are more likely to see it as being victimised because they are autistic rather than realising that it is their behaviour.

    As to what can be done, this can be difficult as they will simply not accept they are at fault, even when they know it is against the rules, because they see others doing it and seemingly get away with it. Ideally I would suggest mentoring or pairing them with someone who could act as a good role model, but also is understanding. 

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • Pippa_ScopePippa_Scope Posts: 5,856Member Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks for sharing this @Barrettd, it would be interesting to hear others' thoughts on this too. Has there been communication between your son and his line manager about this?

    I wonder if @Jack_W can offer any guidance here? 
  • Antonia_ScopeAntonia_Scope Posts: 1,783Member Pioneering
    edited March 2019
    Hi @Barrettd you may also want to contact National Autistic Society  for advice:

    Autism Helpline - Monday: Thursday 10am-4pm and Friday 9am-3pm

    You can call us on 0808 800 4104.

    You can also contact the Autism Helpline via online enquiry forms.

  • BarrettdBarrettd Posts: 14Member Connected
    Yes I have thankyou
  • vysvadervysvader Posts: 133Member Courageous
    edited April 2019
    Barrettd said:
    my son keeps copying other people in the workplace...
    is this normal social difficulties with some one with aspergers?
    If he "copes" with then do they try to take some advantages of him? Perhaps, in the working time, when they're on phones, he works instead of them (for free), he works for the same/smaller (if he's new) salary and the colleges don't pay him for the forced favors, he performs a huge workload that should be spread between more people (they throw on him the work that they should perform and he isn't paid for), meantime, he doesn't receive their salary when they're on phones or however else they search for an excuse to avoid their duties.

    Yes, it is... Be sure, even, not only Aspergers do have these social difficulties. Not only aspies but many more people could've been thinking about compensation when have been experiencing exactly this one event in a workspace when they find themselves the only one person from a team that is actually working and the rest just talking (either on phones or face to face). Many years ago in one of my jobs, my colleges used to disappear for some hours, all hours and used to speak me that any new person in a company should bring them physical gifts such as alcohol, work for them... because this really runs in many companies (rather small) as an unofficial but well-known and widespread tradition when a newbie joins. I'd spoken with many non-autistic and if it really happens that they appear in the same situation as your son, some of them do the same... Yea, but others really act differently than Aspergers, they are more communicative and easily express their emotions what actually means that they straightaway shout them out what actually works much better than the approach of your son.
    You can feel free to get in touch 
  • vysvadervysvader Posts: 133Member Courageous
    edited April 2019
    Geoark said:
    Often though people with autism will be a lot less discrete and likely to carry out the behaviour in plain view. 

    It is also unfortunate that they will often copy the behaviour which allows them to do what they would prefer to do. 
    Thanks for your post. 

    The last person with ASD that I'd experienced my pleasure to work with, she had been never giving us any greetings when she came to work and in general, I can't complain about what she said because she didn't speak almost at all and if she really spoke then she was so anxious that I almost didn't hear her silent voice. She was intelligent and worked, however, yet still seen as a problem because she didn't greet, didn't communicate, despite  the fact that she liked her colleges she hadn't given to know her sympathies (and really, none knew if she is an enemy), and "no fighter" for disputes or intriguer (she's an easy target). Perhaps, It's different if we observe a person with a high IQ, someone with normal IQ and the lowest that used to be the only available target for studies done some generations ago (those are fortunately different from the new studies). Autistic people with heavy retardations used to spend their life in "institutions" where anyone could easily find them and perform any research describing their behavior... Either way, ASD just balances, negates or empowers other genetical predispositions (that are minimally as strong as ASD genes) associated with personality traits and either the environmentally stimulated personality development that plays the major role, there's no personality type called autistic, autistic people can have any personality (I don't mean that you said it there's or anything close, I just add to the topic). 

    When someone reads studies about workaholism tied to anxiety, obsessive and overfocused behavior that is a prominent characteristic of aspies then one can seem to think that your sources/observations very differ. Geoark, this is an NGO that pick up huge funds from governments (the UK and I guess that also EU fonds) and even from the private sector (from donators) with the expectation that this is really a charity and try to help people including those with ASD to resolve a part of their unemployment and social problems, not oppositely. 

    Best regards,
    J. Vysvader
    You can feel free to get in touch 
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