Autism or Asperger’s?

Autism or Asperger’s which is it? Well that depends on where & when you were/are diagnosed.

In 2013 the US made a switch to the DSM-5. The medical coldness and pathology in this document still makes my skin crawl. It is so negative and one-sided. I wish for every bad thing they listed they could add some of the skills that you can look for and encourage in Autistic children.

Other countries use other similar diagnostic manuals.

This switch has caused a great deal of confusion because of the way it eliminated Asperger’s, lumping it into the Autism Spectrum.

Now in the US, depending on when you were diagnosed, there is no Asperger’s – we are all Autistic. Random Aspie fact – some people diagnosed pre 2013 with Asperger’s choose to say they have Asperger’s and others choose to tell people they are Autistic.

People were starting to understand Asperger’s as nerds but the new Autism terminology carries a totally different set of stereotypes and stigmas. Before when you told someone you had Asperger’s they could almost accept it sometimes.

Now if you tell them you are Autistic they immediately doubt you (only because they do not understand what Autism really is).

Going by the old diagnostic manual I would have Asperger’s because I was practically born reading and speaking (despite not knowing what I was even saying half the time). Fairly classic, a child lost in her own world of things and thoughts.

I had a fragile appearance and a cold serious blank face. Somehow my relaxed face always prompted people to ask me if I was alright. Apparently I appeared uncomfortable. I’ve since learned to match my face better to the situation.

When asked about topics of interest I could ramble on about them endlessly. My grandparents thought I was cute and my mother thought I was a wise ass. I was a “smart kid who didn’t try hard enough”.

Nobody noticed my invisible struggles, my sensory sensitivities, my poor coordination, lack of organization, and troubles making friends. The social things always were dismissed as long as I kept everything else in line. I was “too smart” and “lazy” and a million other names.

Only a few years ago did I solve the mystery – I first learned about Autism – really learned about it and understood what it was. I’d heard about Autism before but only in a very medical way. Hearing my life like this did not set off any alarms.

What shook me awake before and after my diagnosis were the voices of other Aspies on the internet and in books. Reading things from their perspectives was like reading things from my own perspective. Things I thought were unique struggles to me are very common Aspie troubles.

This is why I encourage every one of you to write and share your stories – because people NEED to hear them. If the Aspies before me had not done the work to share their Autism stories I would still be lost and this blog would not exist.

These little ripples can turn into big waves. Make waves. You are not alone.

It doesn’t matter to me if I’m Autistic or Asperger’s. We’re all in this together and regardless of our labels do share many of the same experiences.

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81 thoughts on “Autism or Asperger’s?”

  1. “Going by the old diagnostic manual I would have Asperger’s because I was practically born reading and speaking (despite not knowing what I was even saying half the time).”

    when i used to do this, people would look around like they were trying to find the “candid camera” guy (for those too young, “just a prank” youtube videos are basically the same concept.) here was this toddler walking up and introducing himself as though he were 10 or something. “hello, how are you today? my names ____, whats yours?”

    i knew how to read at 3. well, i recall reading at 3. my family tells me i was younger, and they were the ones looking for the guy with a camera. at 5, i taught myself basic programming with a book. “fig” is a language based on that experience, and many others since.

    “I had a fragile appearance and a cold serious blank face. Somehow my relaxed face always prompted people to ask me if I was alright. Apparently I appeared uncomfortable. I’ve since learned to match my face better to the situation.”

    when i used to sit, thinking, people thought i looked pissed off. i used to say “no, just thinking.” since “matching faces to moods” takes significant mental energy i use to think, i try to turn away from people when im thinking so they wont have my face to mislead them as to my mood.

    i do have a high iq, which i only know because they wanted to determine if i was mentally retarded.

    myopia plagues the mental health industry. if your kid can read a book (i skipped right past dick and jane, i liked actual stories and dr. suess) out loud to you at age 3, hes obviously not retarded– but you can never be too sure!

    “When asked about topics of interest I could ramble on about them endlessly. My grandparents thought I was cute and my mother thought I was a wise ass.” I was a ‘smart kid who didn’t try hard enough’.

    this is the same mentality that makes high school kids think that jocks and cheerleaders have no hardships or real problems, just because theyre popular. they might be addicted to drugs or getting pregnant, all because theyre CONSTANTLY pushed to be perfect and live up to expectations, but theyre popular so life must be great.

    except parents think if youre smart, you wont have problems. sorry, but if youre smart, you are so… F--*-E-D. school isnt even made for you, its made to torture you with years of boredom and misunderstanding and pointlessness. when you ask to be challenged, they will give you heaps more of the same stuff that wasnt challenging you.

    when youre alone and depressed, people will tell you that youve got lots to be happy about– which has nothing to do with anything– depression isnt a scale on which you weigh the things to be happy about. wait, now im doing something ive been told im good at: predicting what im about to read:

    “Nobody noticed my invisible struggles, my sensory sensitivities, my poor coordination, lack of organization, and troubles making friends. The social things always were dismissed as long as I kept everything else in line.”

    just be perfect, and we will overlook your imperfections 🙂 oh, and no pressure…

    “Only a few years ago did I solve the mystery – I first learned about Autism – really learned about it and understood what it was. I’d heard about Autism before but only in a very medical way. Hearing my life like this did not set off any alarms.”

    i was engaged to a woman that said i was autistic. since i (like so many people) thought autism was the same as being “locked in,” i thought she was just making fun of me– she also only said it while screaming in the middle of arguing with me, so…

    only YEARS later did i make a friend with an autistic son (who wasnt locked in, but was not at all outgoing– quite shy.) i wanted to help tutor, so i did what you do when you want to work with someones autistic son– i bought 2 or 3 books on the subject and started reading (thats what you do, right?)

    i didnt finish them, i was too amazed at these people who had obviously followed me around since birth and documented everything about– HEY, WAIT A MINUTE!

    you see we always (all of us) knew i was weird. we knew something was different, but we never put our finger on it (because the industry is so clueless, its practically stumbling around in the dark. if they ever picked up a book… but obviously they dont.)

    in fairness, the author of the book was either a professional or consulted with one. its just theres 2 clued-in pros out of every 50 to go around. and most that think they know what theyre talking about actually know less than the people who know nothing.

    “Reading things from their perspectives was like reading things from my own perspective. Things I thought were unique struggles to me are very common Aspie troubles.”

    and thats why this is the best blog on the subject– no one documents this stuff better, anna (i defy anyone to find a better blog on this. and no worries if they do– because your voice still counts anyway– but i tell you, they wont.)

    “This is why I encourage every one of you to write and share your stories – because people NEED to hear them.”

    well said.

    “It doesn’t matter to me if I’m Autistic or Asperger’s. We’re all in this together and regardless of our labels do share many of the same experiences.”

    its not just that the dsm-v is negative.

    as you/weve said before, it throws out practically everything that is known. it obscures, hides, obstructs existing efforts to find, inform and help people whose lives might improve if PROFESSIONALS could diagnose them earlier.

    there are zero (0) conditions that have hyperlexia and dysgraphia as symptoms. along with hypersensitivity to light and sound, other than asd. but the dsm-v doesnt acknowledge any of this.

    i will NEVER be diagnosed now. so what?

    well the problem is, i was diagnosed with a lot of OTHER complete bullsh** instead. they treated what i never had, the diagnosis never fit, but it was “the best they could do.”

    you know what happens when they treat something you dont have?

    it doesnt help. sometimes it makes it worse.

    they arent just stumbling in the dark. theyre grossly incompetent. the dsm-v is pure negligence. its a crime against humanity, and against medicine.

    ah, but who cares? we’re “just being negative.” 😦

    i have no idea why the dsm isnt thrown out as the hooey it all is anyway. the field has much more to offer than the dsm– i mean the previous one (the dsm-iv) finally got rid of homosexuality as a mental disorder! (it was a mental disorder in the dsm-iii.)

    before that, in the uk they treated alan turing (the father of modern computer science) for this “disorder” by forcing him to take hormones or go to jail.

    yeah, we really need the dsm, its helping SO MANY people… to get misdiagnosed and mistreated and neglected. the industry would probably be as well off without the dsm as the catholic church is without the malleus maleficarum. but… would it profit?

    Liked by 6 people

    1. First off – THAT WAS A GREAT READ!! You need to publish this as a blog post – VERY good points… 2nd “thats why this is the best blog on the subject– no one documents this stuff better, anna (i defy anyone to find a better blog on this. and no worries if they do– because your voice still counts anyway– but i tell you, they wont.)” – wow! That is the kindest thing anyone has EVER said to me. Can I quote it? I need go get better at accepting praise and have been told I should add similar quotes to a section on my website.

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      1. I have autism an learing disability severe sencorey iusses
        my friends that have AS seem to have some social Iusse but seem fine other wise can work live independently and so on was mainstream
        me an my friends .had Dealys as baby I never regress I was showing signs of autism as a baby .stated getting help around age 3 there was no EI but my parents an baby dr knowing I had severe Dealys thry did what they could till I stared reciving therapies .i still get help an will allways need help .what I noticed is there are some in the as group .that don’t want to be lump with me an my friends .im HF now .wasnt for along time .an even some in the as group counter .would tell my dad she has autism we only help as .we should help eacher .i don’t unde dtand the them an us 😦

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        1. “what I noticed is there are some in the as group .that don’t want to be lump with me an my friends .im HF now .wasnt for along time .” – as long as we keep this us vs them mentality everyone suffers. I think a lot of how high or low functioning we are comes with how much support we get and our health. When I am stressed or sick I am VERY low functioning. I can get just the minimum things done to appear normal – but the amount of effort it takes is lost on the world. My mother was big on not “letting me make excuses” – this was a curse and a blessing. She taught me to push HARD for the things I want. She told me I was smart and is part of who I am. Right now I am “high functioning” but I don’t go out by alone unless I am going to work. I have crippling social anxiety and prefer being home alone to anything else. Personally I do not see this as a problem because I am happy – but people call me antisocial. So many darn labels. 😦

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      2. i dont blog about the subject personally. you can quote anything ive said to you– but i strongly prefer you limit quotes to things ive NOT said about myself– in other words, you can quote anything i said about you, or what i said in general. (and just to be sure you can quote anything i said about myself too, though i do prefer you stay away from those instances. in those cases, “anonymous” or unattributed quotes are great– you may even change punctuation and capitalization, if you like.) if this seems lengthy, you may refer to these guidelines for using me in your book as well.

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        1. same if your using some of my qoutes say it from me .i was connfussed reading your post brcuse I like I said that .lol
          I don’t know how to ask this qustion with out sounding rude .but i’m curious when autism became the cool in thing to have .i don’t think everyone feels that way .im sure for many who suffer not knowing what was wrong it was a relief like my cousin finding out in collage she has dyslexia .But there a certain group of people maybe the self Dx one who act like it cool or no big deal having it .that just frustrating and confusing to me and my friends and annoying to my parents and their parents .if they could be me or my friends for just 24 hours I don’t think .they would feel that way .an I’m pretty sure .they look for something else to self Dx themself with .thst in itself is crazy .if you think you have something you should just go check it out .my parents had to work hard to find an get me help .autism is no joke an I have the not fun kind .i have the gi stuff an other stuff that gose with it .just courious if anyone can explain this to me .from someone who grown up in the disability world from day one 😦

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          1. i have yet to find anyone saying everything about it is great– a lot of challenges and a lot of struggles, plus some gifts. as for the gi stuff, try decreasing your intake of grains in case youre allergic, and try a magnesium supplement either way.

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    2. It’s part of the ‘Long March through the Institutions’ aimed at a Marxist usurping of Western Society through the Media, Schools, Churches, etc.

      I mean, what’s the point of going to School when the other kids in your class were raised in bars? Our society is rewarding resentment and anger through the lack of motivation in Schools.

      And as for the Catholic Church, well they were paranoid as Hell about non-believers rather than nurture the belief of those who do.

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    3. when I had autism as a child they were still blaming the mom an it look a lot diff then what they Dx autism today .i seen kids I would have no clue have autism .there normal compared to me at that age me an my friends I guess have more classic autism .so the dsmv is there for a reasion .how can someone get help eith out it .but what I think is bad is those self Dx that not ever good .the best thing that ever happen to me was getting an iPad an the Internet .it set me free

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    4. just wondering how many would still want to self Dx themself with asd if it was like it was when I was younger .an the reasion the numbers are higher is also becuse they no longer use mental retardation as a Dx anymore just asd .my parents had to fight those who thought I was .just saying for those self Dx peeps who think it cool or whatever to have this .it not

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      1. the problem with “going after” those chasing it like a medal, is that its difficult enough for people that are #actuallyautistic to get a dx already. un-dxing someone as an unqualified amateur is even worse than self-dxing, but people should be warned against contributing (directly or indirectly) to a “fad dx”– so long as it doesnt result in some kind of peculiar witchhunt against people that NEED to try to figure what-the-f is actually going on with their life. so be supportive but skeptical… as silent wave says on her own posts, people that self-dx may be wrong but theyre still usually onto something– even if its something different than asd sometimes. none of this would be an issue if there werent a lot of overlap between asd and other conditions, and a lot of misdiagnosed and undiagnosed cases from professionals.

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  2. Let’s not forget many professionals are also very disappointed with DSM-V.
    e.g.
    “…the entire diagnostic manual of mental disorders has continued to resist integration with research findings.” – M.W.Kraus PhD

    “…the proposed classification is unnecessarily complex, incoherent, and inconsistent.” – Roel Verheul and John Livesley

    Along with criticisms such as:

    “It consists of the juxtaposition of two distinct classifications (typal and dimensional) based on incompatible models without any attempt to reconcile or integrate them into a coherent structure.”

    “”…the proposal displays a truly stunning disregard for evidence.”

    “It displays almost total discontinuity with DSM-IV while failing to improve the validity and clinical utility of the classification … the proposal has received widespread criticism to which the work group seems impervious.”

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  3. “It displays almost total discontinuity with DSM-IV while failing to improve the validity and clinical utility of the classification”

    hey, thats more or less what anna and i were saying about its entry on asd 🙂 still, “many professionals” arent an industry. are we not agreed that it will generally succeed in replacing anything worth using? (fine if we arent– i certainly dont wish it success.)

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Another major problem Codeinfig are some of the people that go into that profession. Whilst there are those that are compassionate, have integrity, and genuinely want to do the best they can for those in their care, there are also those that have more problems than the ones they are supposed to be helping, who see the profession as an easy sit down job with no heavy lifting but lots of money to be made, arrogant, downright dishonest in some cases, ignorant, brown-nosing company men (where the NHS is concerned) whose loyalty is to sucking up to the right people in the hierarchy etc etc. It’s a lottery and the trouble is you don’t know whether you won the lottery or not until several sessions have gone by and quite possibly the damage has been done.

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  4. i find for ease of understanding its more straightforward to tell ppl my son has aspergers. there’s very poor understanding of both autism and aspergers, but at least the general public could understand the difference. I think the idea of autism as a spectrum is lost on most people.

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    1. That’s strange but I have the opposite problem, lol, If I say ‘Asperger’s’ their response is usually “Eh???” but if I say ‘High Functioning Autism’ or just ‘Autism’ they seem to understand a lot better.

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  5. Thanks for sharing and I’m with you 100%!

    I’m fine with either Asperger or Autism of if they come up with a new label. Call it whatever you want, it is what it is and I have to live with it.

    I worked in autism units for 2 years before I seriously suspected I was one of them too living on the spectrum. It was one girl’s particular behavior that so closed mirrored my own that was the lighthouse to my path to a diagnosis. Then, I started the research and joined forums where I read other people’s stories and WOW!!!! I was not alone on this ship!!! I so appreciate those who share their stories and I shall continue to do the same!

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  6. I usually prefer Autism or we’d have a mixed-up household! My son got “PDD-NOS” when he was labeled, but as he’s grown older, my husband and I are sure Asperger’s would have fit him better (sometimes it’s hard to tell when you have ADHD with the Hyperactivity mixed in). My husband got Asperger’s. They were both diagnosed under the last criteria. I didn’t realize I was Autistic until Asperger’s was off the table. So in our house, we’d have one PDD-NOS, one Aspie, and one Autistic. That’s silly. So we always use Autism for all of us. Besides that, there’s something ugly that we do as an Autism culture sometimes and that’s use Asperger’s as a term to say “we’re not like THEM” (meaning the ones society calls lower-functioning) and that’s a dividing technique and it’s not right. I don’t LIKE that the word Autism won; in fact, I wish we could all be Asperger’s Syndrome because I want to honor Dr. Asperger much, much more than Kanner (Autism’s his word), but it is what it is. We as a family feel like we belong to Asperger and Sister Viktorine Zak, but we use the word Autism in solidarity with everyone who is here now because that’s important to us.

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    1. Autism wasn’t Kanner’s term, it was first used by Asperger. And the term Asperger’s syndrome wasn’t used until after his death, he never knew his “little professors” as having Asperger’s. He described them as having autism. However, classic autistic pedantry aside 😂😂😂, I agree, I would like the whole neurotype to be known as Asperger’s, and wish we could use the phrase Asperger’s spectrum or Asperger’s neurotype.

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      1. As is very diff then autism .some of my friends with autism still need 24/7 care like a 3 year old would or younger .i no some in the milddke .but when you put us next to most AS people it like two diff country’s meeting diff family menbers or something .i never known anything diff I been in sped Ed an had no clue I was diff till my teens when I stared to become more aweare .but unless some with AS have struggle like we have you can’t say it the same thing .my dpfriends with as say they would never dare compaire themself to me or my friends .

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        1. I’m sorry but I have to disagree. The following is a direct quote from the UK charity National Autistic Society website http://www.autism.org.uk/about/what-is/asd.aspx

          “Autism is a spectrum condition. All autistic people share certain difficulties, but being autistic will affect them in different ways. Some autistic people also have learning disabilities, mental health issues or other conditions, meaning people need different levels of support. All people on the autism spectrum learn and develop. With the right sort of support, all can be helped to live a more fulfilling life of their own choosing.”

          Asperger’s is autism. Note the quote above says some people ALSO have learning disabilities. What you are describing are autistic people who happen to also have learning difficulties. The core brain wiring of autism is the similar no matter what the learning ability is. Needing 24 hour care is due to other learning difficulties, not autism itself. Sadly there is a higher incidence of learning disabilities among the autistic population than in the neurotypical population, but as I say, the core traits of autism exist across the whole spectrum. To say otherwise is only dismissing the experiences and difficulties faced by people who could be termed as Asperger’s. Anna’s difficulties with certain aspects of life are clear in her writings, the intensity of her experience, or that of any of us, is no less because we have normal learning abilities. It’s the low learning abilities though that require someone to need 24 hour care. And that doesn’t only apply to autism. Although I will admit that higher learning ability does help with coping strategies and masking, copying the behaviour of others, and to a certain extent, self control in public. Inside though, oh boy, we feel it just as bad. And I have had public (and deeply embarrassing) melt downs, including at work. I am frequently baffled by the jokey office banter and I’m left wondering if someone is joking or meaning something for real. I have had to write myself a list of “meet and greet” rules, a list of how to do a two way conversation rules, remembering not to bore people to tears with a highly detailed monologue about my latest special interest, I even have to remember to ask my own kids how they are doing and what are they up to in their lives. I find eye contact excruciatingly intimate and whatever you do, do not touch my head! I haven’t been to a hairdresser since the day before my wedding, 36 years ago, and I regretted that because in my attempt to act like a normal bride to be, I got totally stressed out, wanted to cry and couldn’t wait to get out of the door. I also cried in the toilet at the wedding reception because I wanted to go home, although at the time I didn’t know why, as I was actually very happy to be married. I have been on and off anti anxiety medication much of my adult life, but only recently realised why. These are the effects of autism and the anxiety we Aspies feel is every bit as real as those with accompanying learning disabilities.

          I do understand where you are coming from artwork234, but I think you are trying to diminish the autistic experience of those without learning difficulties when it’s those difficulties that are the difference, not the “type” of autism itself. I hope you can understand and appreciate what I’m trying to say.

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          1. it hard for me becuse I have autism .severe ld sn stuff .my friends with AS do so well .they have Iusse to .but they said they would never compaire themself to me or my friends .while I’m HF then anyone ever thought I ever be .i allways need help to .i still live at home an stuff
            was in sped my whole life .still get help .im sorry you have struggle

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  7. “What shook me awake before and after my diagnosis were the voices of other Aspies on the internet and in books. Reading things from their perspectives was like reading things from my own perspective. Things I thought were unique struggles to me are very common Aspie troubles.”

    Having only recently come to the realisation myself and having good self diagnosed after completing various online diagnostic measures, I wholeheartedly agree with what was said above. When I read it is was like “omg absolutely, absolutely, absolutely!!” Thankyou so much for your blogs.

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  8. Hi – how you describe yourself – ‘practically born speaking and reading’ sounds like my older son. His diagnosis letter states that he has ‘an autism spectrum disorder best described as Aspergers’ which I think neatly demonstrates the blurred line between the two.

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  9. Sorry to bombard this thread. I was wondering if you, anyone, could direct me to some reading with regards to the reeling, and period of adjustment whereby your whole life seems to now be explained and make sense, and fall into place following this life changing aspergers diagnosis.

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      1. I like the idea of this, but feel it’s so very personal. There again, if I can help others the way your blogs have helped me it would be wrong of me to withfrain. As my every pursuit is about helping others and it is my driving passion being a manager working with adults with autism, and having family members with ASD. Maybe I will give it more time to process it and then go for it.

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          1. Yes, I think you’re right. It could help me decipher and figure out my thoughts. I get so overloaded and it effects me in the form of this massive brain fog. It’s so incredibly frustrating, I’ve always wondered about this and about my appalling memory and my slow, frustratingly slow, way of learning and retaining information! I am quite a sharp person that tends to operate and think at 200+ mph so this downfall in me drives me insane! It is becoming quite apparent that maybe I do need to write, as I keep feeling the need to share in all my comments!

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          2. I think fast but only when I am alone. Other people scramble my thoughts. I am slow in conversation or if asked to recall some information BUT when I remember things they stay in my brain forever. I need a lot of repetition to etch something into my memory – training my brain has been a lot like animal training. I give myself lots of positive reinforcements and use a ton of repetition. I have a different way of thinking – but it is not less and neither is yours. Think about what situations brain fog is worse and what situations it feels better. I am a space cadet – but I use tools (reminders/alarms/calendars) to stay organized. I don’t remember tasks and things I don’t do every day – it is annoying but I work around it. If I didn’t know how to organize myself it would be a real disability – I am lucky I learned in middle school!

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    1. Try “Nine degrees of autism”. It takes you through the various stages of realising that you are neuro-a typical, the crisis of identity, acceptance and rebuilding your new self and finding a comfortable place for yourself in the world. Also, try Tony Attwood’s Complete guide to Asperger’s. The latter is mainly a description of the Asperger’s neurotype, and it may be a difficult read in places (I cried my way through several chapters, I mean how was it that he knew my childhood so very well? There was my experience on page after page) but it helped me to accept that although was indeed a little odd as I had often felt, I certainly wasn’t unique or alone. There are many others like me. It felt like finding my kind, my tribe. And finally, if you want to see how far we have come with acceptance, even if they’re is still a way to go, try Neurotribes. It has a slightly annoying rambling back and forth style of writing, but the history of autism diagnosis and acceptance (or otherwise) is very interesting and enlightening.

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      1. Thank you so very much. Massively appreciated. I will get straight on it. I already feel a massive pressure has been lifted off me and I’m starting to feel less bewildered on this path of self-discovery, more reassured and calmed by it. Like I’m able to physically and psychologically take a deep sigh…know what I mean? Wow… I’m so pleased to meet, well talk with people like me. That I don’t have to pretend with. First the 1st time in like 35 yrs! Talking with you guys and reading the blogs and comments are a therapy to me, it really is.

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        1. I felt like suddenly I’ve reached “Aspie Enlightenment” – My entire life I’d searched for something and could not name it. I had a long list of questions and finally I discovered they all had one answer – Autism. Everything in my life that did not make sense came down to one term – Autism. Shocking.

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          1. Absobloodylutely!!! I’ve been taking 5 minutes here and there to concentrate and recall issues from my past and everything absolutely clicks into place. Why didn’t I think to analyse when these brain fogs appear?! How stupid of me! And wow,yes, when I have a rare moment when I’m alone in my office, and I have my lists, I do not have that stumbling block. However when there is noise, chaos, distractions, or if I’m being asked something, I have this clouding where I have to concentrate so hard to pull the information out and I might say a load of irrelevant crap or totally go round the houses but then I will remember or be able to recall snippets which then sometimes make the other snippets/key words come easier. However, sometimes i cant recall snippets at all and the harder i try to get close to the information i need in my head, the further it goes out of reach. Is this an AS thing? Or is this just one of my deficits? I apologise for the rubbish way I worded that long old paragraph of a response. Had I not been exhausted from work I could have taken the time, written it out, moved it all around, and then re-word it better! Getting back to my deficits, I found a great paper on the cognitive profile of adults with AS. It was weirdly wonderful reading it as it was me! Me to a tee! As in good verbal IQ yet not so good performance IQ (not that I’ve conducted a measure on this, but know that I’ve always been good with words, yet would probs be totally crap with a standardised IQ test as detest figures and numbers and certain mental tasks, I just can’t get that perspective of certain thingsituations, double negatives screw me right over! Anyways I’m warbling again!

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      2. Thanks, my Amazon wishlist is ever-growing. I’ve spent my quota on books on amazon for this month. Anymore and i’ll be having a row of the husband, the sensible one that stops me spending all our money! This month’s book purchases are: 22 Things a Woman with Aspergers Syndrome Wants Her Partner to Know; Very Late Diagnosis of Aspergers Syndrome; and I Am Aspien Woman.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I understand your comments so well! I had a very strong hunch that my child had Asperger’s by the age of 3, but being female, so many doctors and therapists missed it. After receiving the diagnosis at age 16!!!!, I began reading about females on the spectrum and it was like reading the story of my daughter’s life! It gave me very mixed emotions because how could so many “professionals” have missed it when it was literally in print! But, on the other hand – it answered so many questions!
        I am writing about my journey as the mother of an amazingly gifted individual and I hope you will read it. I’m new, so I’m only getting started. I definitely see Aspberger’s as being an amazing gift that will hopefully change the world (if society doesn’t kill that special spark that every Aspie has).

        Liked by 2 people

    2. I can relate! Self-realized 9 months ago, officially diagnosed 2 months ago. I wrote a blog post about it in one of my first blog posts 😊❤️

      Liked by 2 people

  10. “It doesn’t matter to me if I’m Autistic or Asperger’s. We’re all in this together and regardless of our labels do share many of the same experiences.”

    I think labels are one of those two edged sword things — helpful and damaging both. I don’t think I’m on the spectrum (but who knows really), but I can identify so much with what you (and others commenting here) have been sharing and it’s been really helpful to me. In the weeks since I found this blog it’s like a weight has been lifted. I’ve become so much more compassionate with myself.

    And I’ve become less angry with others, mainly my wife. It’s like oh, that’s why she’s upset — it’s something to do with me, it’s not her. And it’s not always because I’m being a jerk, it’s more often one of these things being discussed on Anna’s blog…

    I don’t think I expressed that very well, but I really really look forward to this blog.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Whatever your mental diagnosis is, YOU are YOU to me, that’s all that counts. Learn you, hang with you, learn what you like and don’t like and UNDERSTAND it’s not anything with me, but just who you are. It’s not easy, but THAT is what we must all do. Being raised in an environment that screamed, “Fuck you” you me, greatly debilitated me when it comes to being with my woman. why? Because everything she does, that matches the hell others inflicted on me, is NOT malicious like them. She doesn’t even understand how people can be so cruel and why, to someone who only wanted to say, “Hello.” to them, and “thank you” when someone kind was done, like opening a door for me or the person behind usually.

    People don’t get you in your life, because it’s easy not to. YOU don’t fit THEIR narrative and thus you will have issues with them as they with you. COMMUNICATION is key to UNDERSTANDING and whilst you work your ass to do both, they won’t lift a finger to try so with you, and when they begin to, they most likely run away with distance, busy, or something. WEAKLINGS! WEAKLINGS I JUDGE! Ok, I’d not actually say the weaklings part but, in a medieval time period, it’d be epic as well as funny.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. thank you for sharing! My son is nonverbal so reading how others describe their challenges is very enlightening. I also suggest the book Neurotribes. personally, I find the terms high functioning and low functioning demeaning.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. When I was first researching this, the DSM V language was confusing. And that’s true even though I’m no stranger to reading the DSM. It was reading the blogs and writings (and watching videos) of other autistic people that really helped me begin to translate them into terms that fit my life.

    On ASD, at least, I also tend to find DSM V more coherent than the scattered diagnoses under DSM IV. The DSM, as with most medical pathology texts, is always a work in progress. And we know even less about the ways our minds work than we do the body. I knew a doctor once who joked that there was a reason they called it a ‘medical practice’.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Part of it is a stigma. I’ve gone to several psychiatrists and psychologists who claim “you can’t be autistic because you’re too smart.” To which I reply “Temple Grandin, Dawn Prince-Hughes, and others.” It took an understanding doctor, one willing to work with adults (most of them only deal with children) to run the diagnostics.

    I knew I was very different in grade school. Back then (the 1960s) “autistics” were all non-verbal, banging heads, waving arms, yelling – the term then was “retarded”. That stigma still exists among many, even though there are several famous autistics and people with Asperger’s.

    In the long run, there’s a tendency for the pendulum to swing back and forth. From the DSM-IV to DSM-V there has been a tendency to “lumping”; that may be addressed in the next DSM – or at least I hope so.

    Anyway, regardless of the diagnosis, at least now I know there’s a disability, a malfunction, and my atypical behavior isn’t because I’m a bad, lazy, evil person. That alone was a huge step forward.

    As always, thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I was a child in the 70 an my parents had to fight some who thought I was mr becuse I was non vetble flapping an all the behaviors that go with autism .no one ever thought I would be were I am now .my parents were told I be low f an a list of things I never be able to do .but they kept plugging away find whst ever was out there .one OT I had told my parents I was in there somewhere .an even though in the begging she didn’t think she get far she really end up saving me from autism hell an was one of many to get me were I am today .even those .i will allways need help .i do many things now I couldn’t when younger .i was born in the milde 60s but brcuse I was severe they new something was wrong so been getting help forever .all the sped prougram .im still in adult services .so there are big diff for us with more involved autism then those with judt AS

      Liked by 4 people

    2. Former French President Nicholas Sarkozy was quoted as calling an opponent ‘Autistic’ which I figured out to be a double-translation of ‘Retarded’.

      I guess, in our obsession with defying Political Correctness, us Aspies are caught between a rock and a hard place.

      Liked by 2 people

  15. As always, your writing is mesmerizing to me. All of this was just coming to light in ’94 when I became a COTA. I thought the way it was taught and described to us was so lacking of ‘feeling’…as you said, so medical. You are such an inspiring woman who has found her voice to tell her truth. I have multiple invisible disorders. I am defined by them. If I was, I think I’d be 6 feet under! Thank you as always for sharing your life with us!

    Liked by 2 people

  16. “Follow the money”; quoted from a large number of movies, books, politicians, etc.. When doctors diagnose anything (not just Autism, but anything from common colds to cancer, and all of the psychiatric conditions) they have to identify the condition in a list of conditions called the ICD-10 (I think that is the current version). All treatments are based on the doctor’s diagnosis; i.e., what (s)he signed off as the ICD-10 label will determine how much money can be made from this patient.

    If you have symptoms that are common to several conditions, it behooves you (financially) as a medical professional (the person or people compiling the latest DSM, or some other medical manual) to group the conditions in a way that maximizes profits. E.g., if Asperger’s and Autism have the same symptoms, but you can only make x amount of dollars during the lifetime of a patient with Asperger’s, but 100x amount of dollars (I don’t know the actual ratio) if the patient has Autism, it behooves you to say the patient has Autism (as opposed to Asperger’s).

    Back in the 70s I was watching an episode of 60 Minutes, that covered the latest on Autism (a new term for me, at the time). Autism was described as a condition that was the result of information overload. The condition could be detected by symptoms of poor social skills, difficulty in communicating, and restricted interests (often manifesting itself in repetitive behavior). Later on researchers found that this information overload was the result of an overly developed Amygdala and an underdeveloped Corpus Collosum. It’s not shocking that only one in 2000 people were autistic back in the 70s. So, having an expensive “treatment” (even though another 60 Minute episode I watched discussed “curing” Autism by reducing the severity of its symptoms; e.g., glasses that reduced visual information overload) made “economic sense”.

    Jump forward to the time the DSM-V was written. Say you have several conditions that can be identified by poor social skills, poor communication skills, and repetitive behaviors and/or restricted interests. As part of the medical community you want that community to make more money; just lump all of these conditions that have related symptoms together as being part of Autism, since it let’s you label the patient with an ICD-10 label that results in more money coming back to the medical community (and schools, social workers, etc.).

    Liked by 3 people

  17. I sometimes wonder if you can read my brain because just about every topic you blog mirrors my thoughts as I learn about my diagnosis. I tend to use Autistic and Aspergers interchangeably depending on who I’m communicating with. However reading diagnostic information pre DSM-V I’m apparently firmly in the Autistic classification despite a genius level IQ and somewhat normal education because I didn’t learn to read till I was 11 (dyslexic). Reading up on ASD I’m starting to realise there is big divides in the community about Autistic vs Aspergers & other issues. Personally I’m getting frustrated that every organisation I turn to for help, guidance or information only deals with kids & their families or seriously impaired adults & their carers. They doesn’t seem to be advocates, employment assistance or services for those of us that are high functioning but still struggle to cope with government departments, employers, landlords and so on. Someone told me I should start my own business to fill the gap (hah no that would require talking to people)

    Liked by 2 people

  18. On Fri, Jan 6, 2017 at 1:33 AM Anonymously Autistic wrote:

    > > > Very informative! Thanks for sharing. > > > > > > > > > > > > > > > anonymouslyautistic posted: “Autism or Asperger’s which is it? Well that > depends on where & when you were/are diagnosed. > > In 2013 the US made a switch to the DSM-5. The medical coldness and > pathology in this document still makes my skin crawl. It is so negative and > one-sided. I w” > > > > > > > > > >

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Thanks for sharing dear. But I was thinking that whoever came up with the term “special needs” was a kinder person with a heart. In fact, I’m convinced that all people have special needs. Some more than others. I just appreciate you and what you bring to the table. It helps me with my grandson, who by the way will be 12 next Saturday. He went to his physical examination 2 weeks ago and he stands 5’8″ tall. He’s a handsome young man and will always be “special” to me.

    Hang in there, this year is gonna be a doozey!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Reblogged this on Happy, Healthy Autist and commented:

    Holy smokes, does this ever sound familiar! I miss the old days of Aspergers… it really simplified things in my mind, and it made everything easier to explain to others – not that they were listening, but it seemed easier to me.

    Liked by 2 people


  21. this is more what I’m use to for autism .some my friends are still like this
    I was somewhere inbetween but became HF but still not HF like As becuse of my ld an other stuff .i can do many nt things that .my parents were told I never do .but still struggle a lot to .i hope this helps you understand .my parents an friends parents get upset with those who self Dx or those with mild as who like to compaire themself with me an my friends .i know not everyone dose but it has happen .or been in as social group an felt like didn’t belong there .but found a new group .but I live in the us .so maybe things are diff here for us .then uk

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Pingback: My Way
  23. I have been recently diagnosed with ASD, OCD and possible FAS. I’ve been confused with the terms. I’ve heard aspergers is usually referred to people who suffer with sensitivity and empathy towards others. (I do) Great that you encourage people to share. I hope to share some stories on my blog when I get some time.

    Liked by 2 people

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