With a comical take on the neurodevelopmental disorder, the woman cues on the trick for good eye contact and people relate to it.
Socializing and going about the day like everyone else is quite a challenging task for neurodivergent people. Though society has a general perception of the behavior of people with neurodevelopmental disorders like ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder), Autism, Tourette's or others, those notions are not completely relevant to every neurodivergent person. Some have identified ways to regulate their behavior so well that they show no signs of having any such disorders. Hayley Honeyman(@hayleyhoneyman) is a popular ADHD coach and comedian on TikTok who makes educational videos on identifying and coping with ADHD. After recently unmasking her Autism diagnosis, she posted a video on how she manages to make good eye contact despite being autistic and it has an amazing response.
Honeyman began her video by addressing the common opinion that people have about her condition, "You can't be autistic, you're so good at eye contact!" She then showcased her skills in making good eye contact with a little sneak peek into her internal monologue when she has a conversation with someone. She says to herself "1... 2... 3... Look away, take a pause and look back," and shows the audience that while listening to someone speak she makes eye contact for a few seconds, breaks eye contact and then looks back again. That was her trick and it worked well enough for people to think she doesn't have autism at all.
According to the CDC, people with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) often have problems with social communication and interaction, and restricted or repetitive behaviors or interests. People with ASD may also have different ways of learning, moving, or paying attention. The ADHD coach once again showed how she held eye contact for 5 seconds this time and was impressed with herself saying, "That's a new record. Okay, good." While enacting her monologue, she then said, "Super natural. Smile, nod and look." Now we can understand why people say that she can't be autistic.
This video grabbed the attention of thousands of users, of whom several autistic people related to Honeyman's actions. She captioned her video asking, "Does anyone else’s internal monologue sound like this during conversation?" and @aminthemorning wrote, "My internal monologue is louder than the conversation." Another user, @kaelanjojo, commented, "For me, it's either immense eye contact and I feel them getting uncomfortable or little to none and I have to focus on trying to make eye contact." @sometimes_interesting wrote, "I get so caught up trying to make eye contact I don't hear half the things said to me."
In a similar video about her autistic behavior, she spoke about another common misconception people have. For those who tell her, "There's no way you're Autistic. You're so chill," she responds by showcasing the sensory issues that come along with the disorder. Captioning the video, "If you know, you know," the comedian reveals how irked she gets by touching the sink water and immediately wipes it off with an annoyed expression. This video too resonated with many people and @monkeywithapun wrote, "It wasn't until I figured out that I had autism that I realized how extreme my reaction to cold water is. A fingertip in gives a full-body experience." @lanilou89 talked about other sensory issues saying, "Me with socks and scratchy fabric and bright lights and too much noise."