I read this post by Musings of An Aspie on echolalia.
But really, you should READ IT. Because it is so thorough and awesome.
And I came to the conclusion that my whole family is echolalic.
And also, I am totally, completely, 100% echolalic also. Well, maybe not 100% because that implies I am only echolalic which is not quite accurate. I also speak not echolalically as well.
Here’s one quote from the post that explains how we talk.
Autistic people often develop their own collection of stock phrases–called neologisms. These have specific meaning for the speaker but may not mean much to anyone else.
So, this is me. Neologisms.
It has a word.
“Do you know the muffin man?”
“Your face is made of cheese.”
Now my family and close friends know these. They know that I don’t really care about the muffin man (or think that they have a face made of cheese–honestly I have no idea where that one even came from). So these just sort of fill the conversation.
Everyone does them, too. Different ones, sometimes. Not just me.
And reading signs. (That one is more me, admittedly. But I read signs I pass. All the time. Or boxes or things or everything possible with words just because. Because words. Because sometimes I want to talk but I can’t figure out exactly how or what, so I just start saying things. I read signs. I repeat things. I quote.)
And sometimes it is just because it fits. We are passing the school for above-average children. Must read the sign. It’s a rule.
That’s how my family rolls.
We’ve had visitors before who have looked at us at the end of a conversation or a visit and explained that even though they knew all the words we were saying, they had absolutely no idea what we were talking about. (One of them described our family as a sort of friendly cult.)
My family is echolalic.
And it is beautiful.