Sunday, February 5, 2012

Hyperlexia

I have a hard time understanding verbal speech.  I can't pay attention to conversations with the television on -- my friends hate me for it.  Even if I'm really concentrating, I can only understand 90-95% of what is said when I am watching television or a film.  In fact, most of the time I don't bother going to the cinema, but wait until a movie is on DVD to watch it with the subtitles.

I noticed it when I was a teen.  I assumed that I had hearing loss due to playing in rock bands and attending loud clubs.  I started religiously wearing earplugs, hoping (as a musician) to guard what remained of my hearing.  When I stopped studying music and went to graduate school, I had to sit at the very front of every class, or I couldn't "hear" what the professor was saying.

Concerned that I might need hearing aids, I had my hearing tested several times.  Each time, my hearing was completely normal.  I was concerned that I was just gaming the hearing test.  When I was little I also had my hearing tested.  I learned to anticipate "tones" by watching the face of the person giving the test -- looking for "tells," microexpressions or other evidence that I should be raising my hand.  (Sociopaths must be difficult to diagnose for certain things because of this.)  At my last hearing test, several years ago, I insisted that I face away from the examiner who was already in another, darkened room separated by glass.  I passed with absolutely normal hearing.  Still I doubted the results, wondering if my acute sense of timing was causing me to hear tones in what I knew would otherwise be an uncomfortably long silence.

The puzzle was that I did not have a hard time hearing in general.  I took several acoustics and sound recording classes at university and had an exceptional "ear" across the sound spectrum.  It was just speech that I had a hard time deciphering.  Not language.  My reading comprehension has always been off the charts.  Verbal language.

My friend's niece learned to read when she was just one year old from (shockingly) those "your baby can read" DVDs.  Someone opined that the niece might be hyperlexic, characterized by an extraordinary facility with written language, frequently paired with a difficulty in understanding verbal speech.  Hyperlexia is associated with the autism spectrum (as with other language issues), with some experts believing that all hyperlexics are autistic.  I don't think I'm hyperlexic.  I show no real signs.  I do think, however, that my inability to decode verbal speech has less to do with my ears and more to do with my brain.  Brain wiring?  Attentional problems?  Whatever it is, it seems to not affect music cognition, but that's another thing shared with the autism spectrum.

88 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  2. No idea what causes it either, but I relate to this quite a lot. I was actually still in the place where I thought my hearing was just bad because of rock music, but I've always had my doubts because I'll pick up, occasionally, on very soft sounds. So maybe it IS a common thing? And it's interesting to think about what this means for sociopathy being related to autism.

    And davidsocio01 might think your blog is stagnating, but I've been enjoying the posts. (And where there's one lurker...)

    ReplyDelete
  3. yo david woon jij in antwerpen?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  4. I've never heard of anything like this before.
    But it doesn't really sound like hyperlexia, since you'd have to have had serious issues verbally communicating when you were younger. d:

    ReplyDelete
  5. die pianobar was in antwerpen van daar

    ReplyDelete
  6. woensdag ga ik pcl-r doen (escortmeisje dat ook studente clinishepsychologie doet en een eindwerk over sociopaten maakt met mij als case studie) laatste in lange rij test prof van haar heeft al gezegd aan de hand van my mmpi dat ik bijna zeker een sociopaat ben. Wat mij doet afvragen of mijn vader en grootvader er ook waren.Zij hadden duidelijk kenmerken (primair en high functioning)

    ReplyDelete
  7. (gratish en annoniem)

    ReplyDelete
  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  9. i keep taps kan ik niks aan doen wil controle enzo ik had een zorgeloze jeugd (saai) maar altijd beetje raar geweest en nu ben ik er achter gekomen dat dat sociopatie is jah iedereen is saaaaaaaaaaaaaaai
    vraagje iemand op't werk vroeg raad over haar aspd zoon (22 denk ik) ik heb deze webside en 48laws of power aangeraden zag zij niet zitten wat zou jij aan raden?

    ReplyDelete
  10. ben ooit aangehouden voor iets wat robert jansen had gedaan. na 3 min met mij gebabelt te hebben hadden de flikken door dat er iets goed fout zat en ik wist van niks lol dna onderzoek en thuis komen kijken mijn koksmessen mee genomen (zogezegd voor onderzoek) nooit terug gekregen (mijn woord tegen dat van 2 flikken ofc) toen er een reportage over corupte flikken kwam op panorama dacht ik bij mezelf wist ik al lan (weet je al waar ik woon lol)

    ReplyDelete
  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  13. is ook impulsief en moet geen diagnose probeerde gewoon conversatie bezig te houden.(om meer over jouw te weten te komen ofc lol)

    ReplyDelete
  14. drank en dan slapen of wachten tot je moe word vroeger ook veel problemen bij nu iets minder.

    ReplyDelete
  15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  16. stukje lopen veel te moi weer om binen te zitten (helpt zeer goed voor het denken en slapen btw)
    laters

    ReplyDelete
  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  18. lol ook aan het vissen

    ReplyDelete
  19. (mijn trukken werkte niet op mijn vader en zijn trukken werkte niet op mij dus doe geen moeite)

    ReplyDelete
  20. mensen die ik niet kan lezen zijn saai (zoals autisten en sociopaten lol)

    ReplyDelete
  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  22. nooit iemand tegen gekomen die je niet kan lezen (trukken werkn dan nog wel maar je moet veel te voorzichtig zijn en kost te veel moeite)

    ReplyDelete
  23. just the 2 of us (gezellig)deze plaats is dood

    ReplyDelete
  24. You keep saying every week that your appointment is 'next Wednesday'. It's always a Wednesday, and it's always next week. What gives?

    And now you're saying that the appointment is actually with a prostitute who's going to administer the PCL-R? What?

    ReplyDelete
  25. lol je vertaat er iets van maar niet alles

    ReplyDelete
  26. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  27. je hebt gelijk ik kna beter me bek houden

    ReplyDelete
  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  29. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Welcome Back, David.

    ReplyDelete
  31. How about some more videos David?

    ReplyDelete
  32. This is the first I've heard of hyperlexia but it explains a lot.

    ReplyDelete
  33. ik had vroeger een leraar die zei ik schreeuw tegen iedereen behalven tegen jouw want dat helpt toch niet (er is zeer zijnig dat op mij pakt)

    ReplyDelete
  34. I relate to that. However, most peple are like that. I observe people a lot. Most of the time people only pay attention to every word said only when there is something for them. You are giving empaths too much credit.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Some humor for y'all:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQ5cGYBV2TQ

    ReplyDelete
  36. Hmm. I totally relate to this. One teacher insisted that I get my hearing checked as a child, but it was fine. I have to listen to movies ridiculously loud because it seems to me that everyone mumbles all the time, lol. I do have mild ADHD though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. People confuse me with their fucking clarity lol.

      Delete
  37. Wow, thank you for writing about this. I have never heard of hyperlexia, but you just described my problem perfectly. My hearing is great, but it is very difficult for me to listen to people talking when there is competing noise. I also love watching movies with subtitles. Some people do not believe me when I tell them I have been tested and I have no hearing issues. I assumed it was just ADD.

    I can't tell if I had any facility for reading before the age of 5, because when I was young I had vision issues. As soon as I fixed my vision I immediately read far ahead of my age level though. I used to test off the charts on vocabulary tests and such, and today my greatest area of intelligence according to the IQ test is language comprehension. I also had a speech delay, which is another one of the symptoms.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was good with numbers and spelling and vocabulary, but I could never finish the reading comprehension sections on standardized tests. I couldn't write papers until years later, when I finally learned I could actually communicate ideas systematically. I don't think I process information linearly.

      I'd never be able to have a conversation while a movie is on.

      Delete
  38. an excerpt from the post related to emotional attention deficit:

    " a psychopath acting on impulse could behave helpfully, even generously toward others at one time, and at another time, acting just as uninhibitedly on a very different impulse, be guilty of an act of sheer cruelty or predation."

    Absolutely! How I react in any given situation is directly contingent upon my existing emotional, physical or cognitive state. This, in turn, will determine whether and/or how I respond to internal or external stimuli. I am exceptionally good at "tuning out"; this is especially true concerning my own feelings and the emotions of others. Yet I am extremely impulsive and may well react differently on account of the same trigger from one minute to the next.

    ReplyDelete
  39. ...And yet, there is always the baseline "numbness" in the background. Affective reactions are shifting, shallow and fleeting.

    Very interesting post, M.E.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Alterego
    If you emotions shift, how do you maintain the relationship with your husband?

    ReplyDelete
  41. True Love

    True love. Is it normal
    is it serious, is it practical?
    What does the world get from two people
    who exist in a world of their own?

    Placed on the same pedestal for no good reason,
    drawn randomly from millions but convinced
    it had to happen this way - in reward for what?
    For nothing.
    The light descends from nowhere.
    Why on these two and not on others?
    Doesn't this outrage justice? Yes it does.
    Doesn't it disrupt our painstakingly erected principles,
    and cast the moral from the peak? Yes on both accounts.

    Look at the happy couple.
    Couldn't they at least try to hide it,
    fake a little depression for their friends' sake?
    Listen to them laughing - its an insult.
    The language they use - deceptively clear.
    And their little celebrations, rituals,
    the elaborate mutual routines -
    it's obviously a plot behind the human race's back!

    It's hard even to guess how far things might go
    if people start to follow their example.
    What could religion and poetry count on?
    What would be remembered? What renounced?
    Who'd want to stay within bounds?

    True love. Is it really necessary?
    Tact and common sense tell us to pass over it in silence,
    like a scandal in Life's highest circles.
    Perfectly good children are born without its help.
    It couldn't populate the planet in a million years,
    it comes along so rarely.

    Let the people who never find true love
    keep saying that there's no such thing.

    Their faith will make it easier for them to live and die.


    Wislawa Szymborska

    ReplyDelete
  42. Replies
    1. I smirked initially, but then I felt some anxiety while watching it. I kept thinking they were going to punch him or something.

      Delete
    2. He was conscious, not leaking much blood, and displayed some clear non-pain emotions. Also threw me off a bit.

      Delete
    3. I dont know if I believe in souls, but I didnt laugh. I grimaced, but I watched the whole thing. Fascinating.

      Delete
    4. Souls do not exist.

      Delete
  43. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  44. frankfurt says hello sw

    ReplyDelete
  45. Very drunk tonight SW! Who wants to act out with me?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hiya Haven! Im in! ;)

      Im thinkin drunk sounds good.

      Delete
    2. I've had like a bottle and a half of wine.Yay drunk!

      Delete
    3. Ive got some vodka and some tequila. I think I will drink some tequila.

      What are we drinking to? Trying to figure shit out?

      Delete
    4. More like trying to forget. I'm tired of trying to figure shit out. No one else seems to care, why should I be the only one?

      Delete
  46. frankfurt is having white wine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hAad a bottle of white wine and just opened a bottle of pinot noir. how are you frankfurt?

      Delete
  47. frankfurt feels happy. he found a new friend who understands him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're very lucky. I have very few friends that understand me.

      Delete
  48. Replies
    1. Fucking bunch of lifetime losers messing with hobos. What a load of boring shit.

      Delete
    2. I think it's entertaining. What is your idea of entertaining material?

      Delete
  49. haven, i am the same way. i love this person because he is sensitive just like i. i can go through hard things if one other person understands.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have very few people that ever understand the hard things. You are lucky.

      Delete
    2. why does my socio say i am soulless and self centered? i'm a very sweet person, but i am convinced i'm pathetic and evil.

      Delete
  50. BUM HUNTER LoL

    Best part

    ReplyDelete
  51. it is rare to find someone who lets you tell what is on your heart, haven.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ami stop it already.

      Delete
    2. Ami Behind Every BushFebruary 6, 2012 at 2:03 AM

      I am omnipresent

      Delete
  52. M.E., I have the exact same problem. Exactly. The same.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cold blooded predator you.

      Delete
  53. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7QnQj5qMR4

    ReplyDelete
  54. Sounds like an Auditory Processing Disorder. It affects speech, language and even can bring about discalculia and dyslexic symptoms. I've had it all my life and I put it down to a distressed birth which I suspect induced mild brain trauma. Sometimes it's like being in another country because the brain takes a longer time to 'translate' what people say. However, ironically the hearing ability of a person with Auditory Processing Disorder is often above the norm! I can hear the noise of a conversation from downstairs but I simply can not translate it.

    It does not equal unintelligence. In fact, many people with the condition are very talented with language. I picked it up quite quickly but simply wasn't able to repeat what was said because my brain was making it difficult for me to understand how to repeat and pronounce.

    My aspie brother on the other hand was speaking fluent English at 9 months. Lucky bugger.

    Not a lot is known as to how it's caused. I come from a family of aspies but it's also been linked to brain trauma. If you had a difficult birth (my case was lack of oxygen) or some sort of accident it could be the reason why.

    ReplyDelete
  55. do some research on the application and benefits of Cranio-sacral Therapy. dyslexia is sometimes cause by the left temporal bone being compressed during delivery and dyscalula (number recognition)by the right one being compressed. treatment is gentle, not too expensive, worth a try. good luck.

    ReplyDelete
  56. im 15 with hyperlexia and i have that problem too

    ReplyDelete
  57. Daima güncel tek film izleyebileceğiniz en iyi adrestesiniz.En iyi yerli filmlerin hd kalitede bulabileceğiniz ve türkçe dublaj film izleyerek keyifli zaman geçirebileceğiniz bir film sitesi üzerinde çalıştığımızı ve sizler için en iyi aksiyon filmleri izleyebileceğiniz güzel bir site yapmaya çalıştığımızı belirtmek isterim. Kaliteli animasyon filmleri izleyebileceğiniz ve en önemlisi tek part film izleyebileceğiniz bir sistem kurmanın gururunu yaşadığımızın bilincindeyiz. Keyifli zamanlar geçirmeniz dileğiyle.

    ReplyDelete

Comments on posts over 14 days are SPAM filtered and may not show up right away or at all.

Join Amazon Prime - Watch Over 40,000 Movies

.

Comments are unmoderated. Blog owner is not responsible for third party content. By leaving comments on the blog, commenters give license to the blog owner to reprint attributed comments in any form.