Facial blindness

Blank faceI’m suffering from a mild form of facial blindness. I’ve understood some Aspies does, but I also think some of the cases are linked to my ADHD.

My case is not as bad that I can’t figure out who killed who in a movie, but there are cases where I’m drawing a complete blank on a person’s face.

In my case there are three scenarios with regards to facial blindness:

  1. I know the person’s face but I can’t figure out their name, or sometime where I’ve met them.
  2. Someone talks about some person, I don’t know who it is, and I don’t see a face, and when they point them out I did know the person’s face, but just not their name (basically the same as 1).
  3. And finally, I have the person in front of me, I can’t place them, and I don’t recognize their face… until they tell me who they are or I just get things sorted in my head. And then I realize I know this person quite well.

Number 3 is the only really real facial blindness scenario, as I’ve interpreted it.

A variant of 3, that I haven’t stumbled upon too much, is when you watch a movie or TV-series and get people mixed up.

Let’s look at a couple of examples.

In the first one I’m at the supermarket and a strange person in a hat comes up and looks funny at me. We stand and look at each other for a while until I realize it’s my best friends dad. I’m pretty sure the hat – some kind of felt-wide-rimmed-almost-cowboy-thing I’ve never, ever seen him in before. Funny thing was, he didn’t recognize me either, until he looked up, but then I was still drawing a blank. I think I got who it was when he smiled and said my name.

The second example is really funny. I’m arriving at work and a person I think is a colleague parks his bike outside. Hi, I say and he says hi back. By then I’ve realized it wasn’t my colleague, but it seems the other person may have thought he still knew me, because when we got to the elevator – I’m heading for floor 2 so I use the stairs – he calls after me to get in the elevator.

I think this example may have to do with stress or morning tiredness or something to do. I know the spontaneous “hi” was an ADHD thing… or in combination with Asperger, perhaps. The person I thought it was used to come to work by bike…