Thursday, July 5, 2012

Analyzing Your Friends: A Fun Party Trick

I'm sure that many of you, when telling others that you're a school psychologist, have encountered those folks who get nervous that you're analyzing them or are eager to tell you their problems (or they ask if you're a school counselor, whatevs). Sure, we joke and laugh, but maybe you are psychoanalyzing or evaluating them in some way unintentionally (or on purpose, I won't judge). Honestly, as psychologists, we have more insight into human behavior than the average Joe, and maybe we're scrutinizing those we meet just a little more.

For me, this means seeing dysfunction where it doesn't actually exist.

Fiance and his college roommates went as the Channel 4 News Team one year
for Halloween. He was Brian Fantana, at left, with a legit dirty mustache.
Fiance went to high school with a group of guys who are still all very close and are very happy to revert to Frat Pack silliness when they're together (think The Hangover and Anchorman bromances). One of the guys, Chewy, is a little younger than the rest and therefore often the butt of silliness. I'll begin by stating that Chewy has no mental health concerns or developmental disabilities... but that doesn't stop me from very jokingly and in no way seriously finding them (in his defense, I tease him about this often and he takes it in stride and without offense).

Thus, I bring you, Why I Think Chewy May Have an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (as substantiated by NY State Part 200 educational regulations and DSM-IV diagnostic criteria):

  • Use of repetitive phrases, especially movie quotes (i.e. Anchorman, I Love You, Man, Superbad, Wedding Crashers, etc). Also, echoing statements of friends and peers for days and weeks after it was first stated (i.e. "adorable," "cupcake," "it's not not hot out," "chicks chicks chicks," "so good! so good!,") Meets Part 200 and DSM-IV criteria B3
  • Encompassing preoccupation with women, or "chicks" - looking at women, chatting up women, trying to pick up women, going on dates with women. Will then work a certain girl into repetitive phrasing (i.e. "omg I love her so much," "love her, need her, Chewy," repeating the girl's name over and over). Meets Part 200 and DSM-IV criteria C1
  • Use of repetitive/stereotyped gestures and poses, which often coincide with said repetitive phrases (i.e. pumping his arms in the air above his head while squatting and cheering, "It's free!"; flicking his wrist and fingers while stating, "Obviously.")  Meets Part 200 and DSM-IV criteria C3
  • Adheres to routines in most weekend locales, food, and drink (i.e. same group of watering holes, vodka tonics, Bud Light Limes, Raspberry BBQ chicken wings). Meets Part 200 criteria
Actual diagnosis/classification: typical mid-20 something male. But super psychologist me sees a little bit of the Autism spectrum, for amusement's sake.

Please tell me I'm not the only one. :)

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  1. You are SO not the only one! LOL
    Love this , it made my day :-)

  2. Likewise, I do this often. I try to keep my views to myself, though, so I won't be scrutinized for my observations!

  3. PHEW, thank goodness! Thanks, friends. :)


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