In my lifetime I have lot track of the number of times people have told me to use my indoor voice.  I have issues with voice modulation, and also with tone of voice.  I am often told to stop yelling at people, and that I shouldn’t be so “angry” all the time.  In fact, I am often confused when people say that .  Most of the time I had no idea I was yelling, and I am very often not angry at all.  I say that I am not angry, and am generally not believed, I must be lying, because I sounded angry just a minute ago.  I may be irritated, but apparently when I talk to someone when irritated I express it in a way that others perceive as anger.

I can’t really change that, its hard to stop yelling when I didn’t know I was doing it in the first place.  People also don’t realize that this can be a sign that I can’t actually hear them.  I have realized when I am told to speak more quietly it is often when I can’t hear the person speaking, not sure why, but apparently I speak more loudly to encourage them to do the same.  In turn, they speak more quietly, which actually makes the situation worse.

This is often the case in restaurants, or when someone is whispering in class.   I have problems with hearing someone, when there are other people around talking.  Sometimes this can be a teacher, or people at the mall, or just a TV going at the right volume.  Until recently I thought that everyone heard like that, then I took an online test for Asperger’s. which indicated it as “symptom”.  I have to say, learning that the inability to hear well with multiple people speaking, and not being able to control the level of my voice has an actual cause was kind of awesome.

It has always made me feel kind of stupid, the fact that I can’t use an indoor voice as well as your average 5 year old.  I also have the fine motor control and hand eye coordination of a 5 year old as well, and now, after years of being mocked and being hushed, I finally know what it is.   And well, now when I walk back from the cafe with 4 different conversations going on and being able to understand none, I just go with it.  Its very liberating.

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