There’s something uniquely unpleasant about two people talking to me at once. It’s like wearing a space helmet filled with cicadas.
Whenever I try to concentrate on one voice, the other gets in the way. My brain tries to process both and it just ends up an incomprehensible jumble, like a can of alphabet spaghetti dropped from a low flying space shuttle. Beyond the sensory discomfort, it also stresses me out, because I feel under pressure to understand and respond to both people.
A lot of people on the spectrum have told me they find this uncomfortable as well. For many of us, conversing with just one person can be a daunting task that requires our full concentration; dealing with two people talking to us at the same can be completely overwhelming. It can feel like a relentless onslaught on both a social and a sensory level.
Try to keep this in mind when interacting with people on the spectrum; if someone’s already talking to us, it’s probably best to wait a bit rather than join forces! 😉