7 Warning signs of allism

Allism is on the rise, as evidenced by social media trends. Not many people know precisely what allism is, but our primarily autistic society is attempting to understand regardless. Double-empathy studies demonstrate a struggle between allistic and autistic people understanding each other, since neither party empathizes well with a perceived life experience different from their own.

From where I stand on a small, DIY wooden bridge

Traits of non-autistic people

Fortunately, there are warning signs that someone might have allism. Knowing what they look like, and being on the lookout, before coming face-to-face with these signs of allism helps you treat them more quickly.

Severity and grouping determines where, if anywhere, an individual will be on the allism spectrum.

1. No repetitive behaviors

People with allism lack the ability to self-regulate so they instead project their stress and anxiety to avoid processing their emotions in the moment,

Unfortunately, no amount of validating their stress or anxiety will encourage or help them stim. They simply do not do it.

This looks like throwing tantrums after school or yelling and stomping when it’s time to come inside after playing with friends. Children on the allism spectrum might throw things and slam doors. Some do actually want to hurt you when they throw things at you, because they want you to feel how you’ve hurt them.

2. Starts talking immediately

Unlike autistic people, who often begin speaking later in their toddler years, allistics will often begin speaking before they even start crawling — and they will speak well.

Few pauses exist within their sentences, and their tone will change throughout their words with the expectation that you understand what they mean. This is known as the “allistic accent”.

3. Adds context where it doesn’t exist

People with allism lack the ability to understand literal context. Instead, they understand context figuratively.

When it comes to allism, context lies within the tone of what they’re saying — not what they’re really saying.

In other words, allistic people say what they don’t mean and mean how they say it.

If they say mean things kindly, they mean it kindly. If they say kind things rudely, they mean it rudely. Allistics also use absolutes to refer to general context, while relying on general terms to refer to absolutes.

No matter what you say, they “read between the lines” and add context.

They don’t say what they mean exactly as they mean it. People on the allism spectrum do not understand why this is problematic.

4. Projects more than necessary

Allistic people don’t know how to empathize, so they project their emotions onto others and expect other people to feel the same way. If someone does not share that emotion, the allistic person will feel misunderstood and lonely.

They may say things like:

  • “You never understand me!”
  • “Sometimes you act like you know what I’m saying, and you really don’t!”
  • “After all I’ve done for you!”
  • “That’s not how I said it!”

5. Frequent severe temper tantrums

People with allism have frequent, severe temper tantrums that disrupt their daily routine and the lives of people around them.

Common causes of these tantrums include:

  • feeling misunderstood
  • lack of self-regulatory behaviors
  • inability to cope with alternative communication methods
  • no control over self and people around them
  • not getting their way
  • someone doing something they don’t like

Tantrums exhibited by people with allism may include slamming doors, throwing things, yelling or screaming, hitting, and other angry behaviors.

Unlike autistic meltdowns, these tantrums dissipate as soon as the allistic child is given what they want. Unfortunately, this is also the only way to stop the tantrum quickly.

6. Controlled emotional responses

Those on the allism spectrum control their emotional responses or exhibit unusual emotional responses, like crying at a funeral and throwing a tantrum when someone else laughs.

They may also overexaggerate expressive language, like contorting their faces to portray worry and furrowing their brows to express stress.

At a glance, these controlled emotional responses aren’t perceived as problematic, but under the surface lie manipulative and malicious intentions. Your allistic child could lie to you with a straight face, and you’d be none the wiser.

Allistic children who don’t unlearn these behaviors grow into adults most likely to practice emotionally abusive behaviors, such as gaslighting.

7. Social butterfly

An extremely common trait among people with allism is their innate need to socialize with everyone, including people they don’t know through any mutual connection.

For this reason, many people on the allism spectrum are deemed socially awkward, since they do not fit in with the norm.

Other odd communication tactics non-autistic people utilize are:

  • improper use of pronouns, statements and questions
  • indifferent to other people’s feelings and too obsessed with their own emotions and comfort
  • initiates conversation
  • too eager to make friends
  • unusual tone or rhythm of speech (allistic accent)
  • frequently makes irrelevant remarks, as gathered from reading between the lines
  • prefers abstract language and concepts
  • difficulty with literal context and concepts
  • interested in numerous topics, instead of focusing on a few special interests
  • struggles with rote memory, e.g. repeating lists or facts

Treatment for allism

Fortunately for autistics, research has come a long enough way that doctors can diagnose and treat allism fairly quickly.

Treatment options include applied behavior analysis (ABA), where allistic children will learn how to fit into an autistic society. Your child with allism will need to attend ABA therapy 25-35 hours per week, after school.

Medication helps manage the hyperactivity. Although there are risks associated with medicating children during their developmental years, many allism parents believe this is the right choice in the long run.

If you think your child has allism, please seek medical help straightaway. If you yourself think you may be on the allism spectrum, please tell your primary care physical. Self-diagnosing allism takes resources away from people with allism.

This post is a parody as the result of seeing some autism infographics on Pinterest from an anti-autism, anti-ND, prejudiced neurotypical point of view. Much of the neurotypical/allistic rhetoric is flipped in this post to instead describe allism, with autism being the default neurotype.

It was not written to make any allistics feel comfortable and safe while reading it.

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I’d appreciate some details and specifics about all of these, particularly about the “improper use of pronouns”: what improprieties do these people commit?

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Please refrain from calling people with allism “allistic.” I realize that you mean to show respect and consideration by doing this, and acknowledge the fact that you cannot separate the person from their condition, nor would you wish to. However, persons with allism, as you know, are often unable to process details about the world around them in-depth, and they may assume that logical terminology is intended as a “label” or even as derogatory. They tend to attach a great deal of importance to the superficial and social aspects of language. Therefore, they may not be able to understand what you are saying unless you couch it in sanitized, matter-of-fact “person-first language,” so as not to involuntarily offend them. The correct term, although it sounds awkward and abrasive to someone attuned to the nuances of correct English grammar, is “persons with allism.” Thank you, and I’m sure you understand.

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Wow! By the way, some of my friends and I have been discussing whether whether the various forms of neurodiversity include left-handedness (since this is neurologically based).
Are left-handers neurotypical, or are left-handers neurodiverse?

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Left-handers are neurologically diverse.

And so are those who are ambidextrous.

And people who have mixed hand dominance or haven’t found a hand yet.

[this also applies to feet and sides]

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Brilliant! I loved some of your zingers, like “lack the ability to self-regulate,” “overexaggerate facial expressions,” “cry at funerals,” and “emotionally abusive behaviors.” We saw a similar post last night and I am just intrigued by the potential of this idea. We were brainstorming some of the handicaps of this people group, such as “underthinking,” “undersharing,” and “detail blindness.” You nailed a few more. How about the one where people feel the need to remove many items from a perfectly normal room so that it appears almost empty, not at all lived-in, and in the process, show a total lack of sensitivity to the sentimental value of those items? And they have the nerve to call it “cleaning”! They also seem to be weak in executive function, so that they struggle with “premature decisiveness.” Oh, the list goes on and on! I love it!

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