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Possible face blindness or normal?

(17 Posts)
SlimCheesy2 Sat 06-Aug-16 03:43:32

Just wondering if this is fairly normal, or something else.

DS is 6 and is ASD. I have found that quite often he seems unclear if he knows people or not. If we start chatting to someone in the street/shops etc he will ask them;'Do you know me?' Sometimes I will have to remind him who so and so is.

But, there are people who he really ought to know straight away, like his godmother etc. If they come to our house then he knows it is them, but if we are out he often confuses other people for a person he ought to know. So, his godmother has very long hair. If he sees someone with long hair he will ask; 'Is that x?' This evening we were out for dinner and on the way home met our NDN. DS said 'Granddad is that you?' Fora start his granddad lives abroad and it was just that the NDN is also roughly the same age and has a similar haircut.

I have sometimes been a bit surprised by DS confusing people, but am wondering if there is something more to it, if this is related to his autism somehow (I am still learning about it) or if this is fairly normal at his age?

Any thoughts very gratefully received.

zzzzz Sat 06-Aug-16 04:24:57

I think it's fairly normal for an autistic 6 year old or a nt child who is say 3.
Classifying games like "Guess Who" and home made family tree games (or draw tree, get a mug shot of each person, and try to find the right set up together), will help him stumble on the way he is going to manage it.

Practice does and will help.

On a more general note, a large proportion of the population struggle in this area, they just have the social skills to hide itgrin

zzzzz Sat 06-Aug-16 04:25:43

(And I'm pretty sure technology will be pretty ms to help in the next decade.)

SlimCheesy2 Sat 06-Aug-16 07:02:08

Thanks zzzzz smile Love the idea of drawing up a tree of important people. That is the sort of thing he'd love too as he loves ordering and labelling things.

grin on social skills. True, I have been known to be extremely chatty to people I vaguely recognise!

Ineedmorepatience Sat 06-Aug-16 08:34:15

I have a bit of a theory about this (not recognising people is a big problem for me).

I think that is is related to eye contact or at least to looking at faces, I believe my brain doesnt store an accurate picture of someone because I dont look at them properly!

I get better at recognising people when I have known them for a long time and always recognise family members so I dont think I have the condition that stops that from happening.

What helps me is if someone tells me who the person is, Dd3 is quite good at doing that if she recognises the person. She has a dx of Asd, I dont but am fairly certain I have it!

zzzzz Sat 06-Aug-16 08:52:54

I think it's related to language grin (you can see we both have our areas of "interest"!grin). I think it ties in with pronoun reversal and for ds the use of names. It's relatively unremarkable for an autistic child to confidently name models of cars, hovers, logos long before they use names confidently. I don't mean it's a language problem more what underlies the language. That bit that says "this word means this person" not "a person".

OneInEight Sat 06-Aug-16 09:23:40

I was quite frankly stunned when two weeks after moving on from a primary school (age 6) my two completely failed to recognise a girl who had been in their class for three years! They did the same thing with a playgroup helper who they had been very attached to you although admittedly she was wearing outdoor clothes so probably looked a bit different again shortly after leaving. I was more surprised at the later because as I said she had been their favourite staff member. It's more than not being able to put a name or association to the face it's just as if they haven't seen them before. On the other hand like dh they remember the minutest detail of TV programmes they have watched they before which I forget pretty instantly. I guess it's all down to brain development but quite weird how different you can be. (mine have an AS diagnosis)

grafia123 Sat 06-Aug-16 09:27:02

DS and I both have difficulty recognising people. Ds mostly recognises people by clothes and haircut. I often see people who have similar features to someone I know and I will feel unsure if it is the person I know or not. I have occasionally spoken to someone and it wasn't the person I thought they were. I wait for other parents at school to say hello to me first because I really struggle to recognise them unless they have very noticeable jacket on. I think my memory does not hold an accurate or detailed picture of peoples faces. I assume my ds will be like me and learn to cope with it.

zzzzz Sat 06-Aug-16 09:34:40

My ds now is brilliant at recognition. He knows the name of every child at his school and staff BUT there are tiny "tells" if you are the Mother wink that show the recognition is not using the standard algorithms grin. For example he occasionally says "this ones like an *known personsname*". Though I can see the resemblance it can be different sex/age/everything.

PolterGoose Sat 06-Aug-16 09:44:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

zzzzz Sat 06-Aug-16 09:52:04

My sister is very face blind. She says it is extraordinarily difficult in an office sometimes where a certain amount of nodding across the room is expected. Luckily her job is quite "bossy" so I expect blanking people is part of her persona grin

Doesn't seem to have held her back

Ineedmorepatience Sat 06-Aug-16 13:08:15

I use voices to help me, I am really good at recognising voices. I need to hear people speak and then I know if I know them. Its not fail safe but it works often enough. I still sometimes dont know who they are but at least I know I know them.

I have started to be more honest about how difficult it is and recently told someone I hadnt recognised them until I heard the speak, I have known this person for roughly 3 yrs but see her infrequently!

SlimCheesy2 Sun 07-Aug-16 07:11:48

This is all fascinating, thank you so much.

This happened again alot yesterday when we were out in town. I met several people and would prompt DS saying 'do you remember...'.

MirrorMirrorOnTheFloor Sun 07-Aug-16 07:18:10

When I was diagnosed with prosopagnosia, I was told it was relatively unusual to have it on its own and not to have an ASD or a history of brain injury. So I think it does often go hand in hand with ASD.

zzzzz Sun 07-Aug-16 12:18:06

What sort of brain injury mirror?

MirrorMirrorOnTheFloor Sun 07-Aug-16 12:24:21

zzzzz They just said 'brain injury', I assume anything that involves a blow to the head? They did also ask about birth injuries / problems, so maybe that, too.

frazzledbutcalm Sat 13-Aug-16 08:36:54

My ds (age 11) has face blindness (part of spd). When he looks at you he only sees your nose and about 1cm around it, he has to scan your whole face to build up a picture of what you look like. He recognises people now but doesn't recognise people out of their natural environment (teachers out of school grounds, dress up days etc) .. In this instance he recognises them when he hears them speak. He wears coloured lens glasses from here which help a lot.

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