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unkerjay
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Joined: 7 Aug 2017
Age: 62
Gender: Male
Posts: 3

02 Oct 2017, 5:30 pm

I introduced myself acknowledging that a psychiatrist suspected I was on the autism spectrum.

I followed up and was told it was confirmed that I was on the autistic spectrum - high functioning.

Then I was asked, essentially, what my super powers were.

What was I really good at?

I said I have trouble understanding people. What does that mean? Can I provide an example?

I almost feel like it's a quiz, pass / fail. And I feel like I fail, not because I'm not having problems but, I just seem to inadequately answer the questions.

It's a little like, I believe I'm mentally ill. Yes, but, can you prove it?

I've been scheduled for a follow up with a "post doctoral psychology fellow" - female.

What does that even mean?

Last time I talked to a psychology doctorate, it was determined that I had "stress adjustment disorder".

Loss of a loved one, loss of a job, (resultant homelessness), significant loss of income, divorce, all can lead to "stress adjustment disorder".

Seems to me the kind of things that can happen to anyone. The diagnosis appears to be, develop coping skills. The problem with that was, a job might help, human interaction might help, an under the skin understanding of the person having the problems might help.

What doesn't help is a half hour session in which I answer the question, "So how are you feeling today" followed up by, "See you next time".

I appreciate the info (job search for Adult Autistics) I've gotten from Wrong Planet (or maybe it's Autism Speaks). On Adult Autism. For me, it's a little like being a guy and informing people that I was abused as a child. Telling people I was sexually abused as a teen. I'm a guy. Somehow I'm just supposed to be more durable than other victims by comparison. A whole scandal, a whole movie made about it - "Spotlight". Worldwide. Not just me.

Autism, as best i can gather, isn't simple. I don't fit into a nutshell. It's, to me, kind of like, if I had it together enough to adequately and accurately explain what's wrong with me, I'd be further along the wellness spectrum, wouldn't I? If the answer is, "No", seems like, getting the wrong kind of help isn't going to help either.

So, I'm wondering at this point in my life, how to proceed.

What should I be looking for?

What can I reasonably expect?

Most of all, how can I be my best advocate going forward?

Thanx



Blomquist
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Joined: 28 Sep 2017
Age: 34
Gender: Male
Posts: 15
Location: Norway

02 Oct 2017, 6:30 pm

My experience of meetings with psychiatrists and similar is that it helps to be prepared and to have some motivation. If I understood correctly, some of your focus is on getting a job. If that is the goal, try to be conscious of some issue or something relating to that goal that you can discuss during the appointments. It's probably a good idea to be active in setting an agenda for the meetings.

I remember that I've spent some time filling out forms to help with diagnostics etc. Afterwards, I've been thinking that the time might have been better spent talking to the psychiatrist, and instead filling out the forms between appointments. Then I'd have more time to think about how to answer the questions, and I could use the appointments more efficiently. I hope this helps to a certain degree. I'm not sure that I have anything useful to say regarding abuse.



unkerjay
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Joined: 7 Aug 2017
Age: 62
Gender: Male
Posts: 3

19 Oct 2017, 12:06 am

I've had three sessions now, in attempting to determine a course of action.

My perspective, I wanted to figure out "what makes me tick" and from there, get some help in working through my issues.

I'd asked for a diagnosis.

I was informed "neuropsychological analysis" was "inexact".

"Dialectical Behavior Therapy" was also recommended, as was "Interpersonal Group Interaction".

Dialectical Behavior Therapy seemed, from what I read, to be useful for, among other things, "Borderline Personality Disorders".

In the end, I was informed that there's just not the knowledge (or perhaps interest in) for figuring out "what makes me tick" and that more productive might be therapy addressing specific problems.

To me that seemed / seems like putting the cart before the horse in that therapy without an understanding is counterproductive because it attempts to work through problems without having a handle on the underlying causes.

Having been involved in tech support, for example, it was explained that, not knowing why something's a problem doesn't mean it can't be treated or fixed.

I was a stickler for the understanding.

It wasn't something they offered and so, at that point it all broke down.

The therapist said, based on our interactions that she didn't think it was autism, but perhaps something in the class of "personality disorders", which to me, sounded like "potpourri", "smorgasbord". A list of which some may apply, but, as the patient, I'm, again, not the one to look through the list and conclude, well that seems like it might be my problem(s). Anymore than, and, at this point, it seems more like fishing than definitive.

I've been told I might be bipolar, then autistic, then it may just be personality disorders.

I've looked in to sociopathy and pyschopathy neither of which, based on the qualifying criteria seem to fit me. So, now, I'm just left with the mess that is me and no definitive therapeutic way forward.

And, likely, not autistic. I've been hesitant to definitively push forward, because I wanted definitive rather than, as I put it, "either trying to fit myself to the diagnosis" or fitting a square peg into a round hole or just trying different labels on for size.

All the more reason why I wanted something definitive.

I didn't get that.

The general consensus seems to be that I'm screwed up / dysfunctional, but, not with any specific, definitive diagnosis around which to have a better understanding or to plot an appropriate course of action.

That doesn't put me in any specific category other than the population at large on any given day.

So, that's where things stand.

Just, thought, in all fairness, that I'd bring you up to speed.

Thank you for your time and help.