How many of you have ever had the question asked, “Why are you so quiet?” or along those lines? My quietness was commented on throughout my entire childhood – by peers as well as teachers. Yet no one ever suspected I had ASD. People thought quietness was a negative character trait. This is really sad as it can actually be a wonderful, positive trait.
I always used to think what a strange thing it was for teachers to remark on, since as far as I was concerned, school was a place where students listened and teachers taught. I never used to say anything, I just used to get on with my work quietly. Why was there a problem? I was getting high marks and meeting deadlines. Even as an adult, the few times I’ve been in employment, I’ve had colleagues and employers tell me that I’m “quiet.” Well, yes I am quiet, why is it such a big deal to have a quiet personality?
“Why are you so quiet?” is such an odd question to ask. I would never dream of asking somebody that. It feels really judgmental. I wonder why people feel that this is an acceptable thing to say?
It just seems such a ridiculous thing to comment on.
In hindsight however, I understand why a teacher would comment on it. They think something is wrong and that the person’s confidence needs to be developed. But never did they suspect it was a characteristic of my ASD.
Being quiet can be a part of someone’s personality (like mine). There may also be more to it (as in my case, too). Here are some possible reasons why a person on the autistic spectrum might be quiet: