I have AS - could my children develop full-blown Autism?

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Magnus_Rex
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02 Jun 2013, 6:51 pm

Callista is right. It is also the reason why I have no interest in having children: I am terrible at taking care of living beings. Myself included.

However, if you do have a child (when you are ready) and it turns out to be on the spectrum, you should try to have a second child. I would really like to have a neurotypical sibling around my age (2 years of difference would be great): it would have made things a lot easier. Supposing my hypothetical sibling and I got along, of course.


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02 Jun 2013, 8:37 pm

Another point is that this study suggests that autistics whose parents are better at reading their cues in infancy are more likely to be higher functioning. (Note: they are not suggesting that sensitivity to the child's cues changes the probability of the child being on the spectrum, merely the child's functioning level if they are on the spectrum.)

It's not the only determinant of the kid's functioning level, but since an AS parent is likely to have an advantage at reading an autistic kid's cues, it could improve your chances somewhat.

Also, keep in mind that while an LFA child is hard to take care of, they aren't necessarily unhappy. If they have the right supports in place, LFAs can lead enjoyable lives - even if they may not achieve as much as an HFA kid does.



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02 Jun 2013, 8:46 pm

I have AS and my son has classic autism. He's actually MUCH easier for me to take care of than my NT kids are.



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02 Jun 2013, 8:46 pm

It was easy for a my BAP/autistic parents/grandparents to raise me, since we had similar traits, so my traits were normal to them. I was raised in autistic family and culture, where we didn't really need to read each other the way that NTs do. The whole NT system of social back and forth was mostly irrelevant to us. I am sure that growing up in this kind of family is part of what I made me very high functioning.


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02 Jun 2013, 9:35 pm

I think this merits in depth talks with a (carefully chosen and knowledgeable and compassionate) MD and therapist both.

It is just too huge a life decision to discuss on a forum in my opinion. I understand sounding it out can help but I hope you also will do what I mentioned in the above paragraph.

If it helps any - my layperson reaction is, no one knows what will happen in future, at the end of your life would you rather have had children or not have had children? That is really the final answer...in my opinion.

NT parents have AS kids and AS parents have AS kids and NT parents have autistic children...there is really no guarantee. Would you be prepared for NT children?



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03 Jun 2013, 2:36 am

daydreamer84 wrote:
Well, like I said it was only a guess , what we think it might be based on the current figures of people with ASD in the general population (no more than 2% ) in the highest estimates. I don't think there would be that many more when you add undiagnosed who actually have it. So in my personal opinion the rate in the population is close to what current figures show. There's no point arguing this as it's speculation. Now for the research done on Schizophrenia which is also highly heritable, the % chance with a parent s with Schizophrenia will have a child with Schizophrenia is still low in terms of pure numbers - still under 10%. This I can find a source for if you'd like because I took neurophychology of abnormal development and looked at the heritability of schizophrenia in depth. There's still a greater chance the person will have a normal child than a schizophrenic child even though the disorder is highly heritable because the % of people in the whole population that have it is low.


I doubt you have factored in the genetic link between autism, schizophrenia, ADHD, bipolar and severe depression. As scientists have recently discovered this link (and many of us on here have a close relative with schizophrenia or other of those conditions, myself included), there is probably also a high chance that if you are autistic you will have a child with one of those conditions. Likewise, if a close relative in yours or your partner's families already suffers one of those conditions that will increase the risk of you having an autistic child too. All of that would add up to higher odds overall of having an autistic child, it's not only autism in the parents.

I do not believe whatsoever that the current figures are correct. Many, many females have trouble even getting assessed for AS let-alone diagnosed and many are misdiagnosed with other disorders. They reckon (at the most generous guess) that the rates for male to female with autism is 4:1. I believe it's 50/50 (the NAS say there is an increasing stream of women coming to their clinic and they estimate at the moment 2:1 which is an unofficial figure, so is not in the statistics and the rate of females is continuing to rise) so that means a lot of unaccounted for autistics. I've not read of any studies done on whether certain racial groups have different risks, and if some, such as 3rd world countries have a higher risk for instance, no-one would know.


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03 Jun 2013, 12:42 pm

whirlingmind wrote:
daydreamer84 wrote:
Well, like I said it was only a guess , what we think it might be based on the current figures of people with ASD in the general population (no more than 2% ) in the highest estimates. I don't think there would be that many more when you add undiagnosed who actually have it. So in my personal opinion the rate in the population is close to what current figures show. There's no point arguing this as it's speculation. Now for the research done on Schizophrenia which is also highly heritable, the % chance with a parent s with Schizophrenia will have a child with Schizophrenia is still low in terms of pure numbers - still under 10%. This I can find a source for if you'd like because I took neurophychology of abnormal development and looked at the heritability of schizophrenia in depth. There's still a greater chance the person will have a normal child than a schizophrenic child even though the disorder is highly heritable because the % of people in the whole population that have it is low.


I doubt you have factored in the genetic link between autism, schizophrenia, ADHD, bipolar and severe depression. As scientists have recently discovered this link (and many of us on here have a close relative with schizophrenia or other of those conditions, myself included), there is probably also a high chance that if you are autistic you will have a child with one of those conditions. Likewise, if a close relative in yours or your partner's families already suffers one of those conditions that will increase the risk of you having an autistic child too. All of that would add up to higher odds overall of having an autistic child, it's not only autism in the parents.

I do not believe whatsoever that the current figures are correct. Many, many females have trouble even getting assessed for AS let-alone diagnosed and many are misdiagnosed with other disorders. They reckon (at the most generous guess) that the rates for male to female with autism is 4:1. I believe it's 50/50 (the NAS say there is an increasing stream of women coming to their clinic and they estimate at the moment 2:1 which is an unofficial figure, so is not in the statistics and the rate of females is continuing to rise) so that means a lot of unaccounted for autistics. I've not read of any studies done on whether certain racial groups have different risks, and if some, such as 3rd world countries have a higher risk for instance, no-one would know.


Meh, I think even with the link between these conditions people with any of these kind of neuro-psychological or neurodevelopmental polygenetic conditions would be more likely to have a normal child than a child with one of these conditions.Look at how hard it's been to pinpoint the different genes that cause Autism, the Autism genome project results suck. Certain genes confer risk a small percentage of risk a small percentage of the time. It probably depends on what other genes the partner has -it has to be the right combination of genes -and maybe sometimes those combinations produce one of these conditions and sometimes not and and maybe it can depend on some unknown neonatal or prenatal environmental factors all interacting.

As for the other point we're still just speculating. There could be a lot of people misdiagnosed and a lot of people who think they have it actually having some similar condition but not ASD and thinking they have ASD because it gets a lot of media coverage and people know about it. It has become a bit of a fad diagnosis and that means doctors might look to it instead of other conditions because it's in the research and it';s on their radar. For awhile in the 30's when Schizophrenia was being defined and researched a lot people with any kind of psychotic disorder and some personality disorder got lumped in as Schizophrenic. I know now it;s getting hard to diagnose because some doctors want to AVOID giving a fad diagnosis -so then ASD cases might get over-looked. It's very complicated. The thing is since all of these conditions are based on behavioral symptoms which are by nature subjective since none of them can be diagnosed by something objective like a blood test the diagnoses can be affected by subjective factors. These things would impact the numbers so that if you added in undiagnosed people even in 3rd world countries included it could still be about the same as the figures currently suggest. This is all pure speculation though.



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03 Jun 2013, 1:21 pm

daydreamer84 wrote:
Meh, I think even with the link between these conditions people with any of these kind of neuro-psychological or neurodevelopmental polygenetic conditions would be more likely to have a normal child than a child with one of these conditions.Look at how hard it's been to pinpoint the different genes that cause Autism, the Autism genome project results suck.


I agree. We do not know exactly what causes AS/Autism. Yes, there's a risk based on genetic factors, but we don't know how relevant that is.

If you don't want to risk it, don't have kids. Otherwise, all you can do is avoid any environmental factors that MIGHT cause it to emerge and know what options there are if the child is born with AS/Autism. At least today there are a lot more treatment options to help someone with AS/Autism to have a very positive life compared to just 20 years ago.



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03 Jun 2013, 1:41 pm

^^^
It's definitely true that more of the variability in who gets ASD and who doesn't is genetic rather than environmental (that's what having a high heritability means) but the genetics are complex with many, many genes conferring small risks -it's probably the combo of genes that matters and many different combos of genes that can lead to the same condition -as well as a small amount of interaction with environmental factors , probably prenatal or perinatal.

I agree though that if you're not prepared to raise a child who could be disabled you're not ready to have a child, OP. I commend you for seriously considering whether you're able to raise a child before having one. I remember from high school family studies my teacher told us about a survey study that looked at the top ten reasons people have kids and the top one was "because that's what adults do....get married and have kids". :lol: No, you have to be ready to nurture , protect and care for a human being for years and years (maybe for life) who may or may not have any number of problems/challenges before you have a kiddie.

It's kind-of hard to avoid the environmental factors that contribute to ASD because we don't know what they are- but a person can just strive to provide the best pre-natal environment possible in terms of the things that are in their control- which should be done anyway.

Yes, I agree about the increased chances of succeeding in the world with an ASD nowadays.



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03 Jun 2013, 3:42 pm

Ettina wrote:
Another point is that this study suggests that autistics whose parents are better at reading their cues in infancy are more likely to be higher functioning. (Note: they are not suggesting that sensitivity to the child's cues changes the probability of the child being on the spectrum, merely the child's functioning level if they are on the spectrum.)

It's not the only determinant of the kid's functioning level, but since an AS parent is likely to have an advantage at reading an autistic kid's cues, it could improve your chances somewhat.

Also, keep in mind that while an LFA child is hard to take care of, they aren't necessarily unhappy. If they have the right supports in place, LFAs can lead enjoyable lives - even if they may not achieve as much as an HFA kid does.
That's an interesting point. I wonder if NT parents with autistic children would benefit in a "How to Speak Autism" class? Perhaps even taught by an adult autistic. If an adult understands the child's signals, even if they are highly atypical signals, then that child will learn about communication earlier on. Especially so if the child is still quite young--two, three years old. At that age, the important factor has to do with teaching them about communication in general, about how you can do things that will allow other people to know things about you; teaching them how to communicate to NTs can come later.


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03 Jun 2013, 7:23 pm

Callista wrote:
I wonder if NT parents with autistic children would benefit in a "How to Speak Autism" class? Perhaps even taught by an adult autistic. If an adult understands the child's signals, even if they are highly atypical signals, then that child will learn about communication earlier on. Especially so if the child is still quite young--two, three years old. At that age, the important factor has to do with teaching them about communication in general, about how you can do things that will allow other people to know things about you; teaching them how to communicate to NTs can come later.


Such a course would be very helpful and very popular. There would be waiting lists to get into the course.



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04 Jun 2013, 6:37 am

daydreamer84 wrote:
whirlingmind wrote:
daydreamer84 wrote:
naturalplastic wrote:
If you were neurotypical, and you married a neurotypical, you could still have children who were full blown low functioning autistics. Most autistics ARE born to NT parents. So why would you be exempt from the possibility?

Are you more likely than the average parent to have autistic kids because you have aspergers? Probably slightly more likely.


Your children are probably more likely to have autism of any kind than the average person's children but it;s still a low chance. Hypothetically say there's a 1% chance that an autistic child will be born to a normal couple in the general population - you might have a 2 or 3 or 4% chance. It's still a greatly increased chance, hypothetically (at-least double) but there;s still a 90 something percent chance that you'll not have an autistic child-most likely you still won't.


I don't know where you got your figures from but I would say that is wholly incorrect. If you consider, that (as you yourself said) an autistic child can be born to NT parents, and that many Aspies/auties have a strong likelihood of having a child on the spectrum, then I would say that makes it a lot more probably than the % you state.

I may be totally off-base here, but if you imagine what % of the world population is on the spectrum, and then add to that the % of autistic children born to NT parents, I think it would be a high risk for someone on the spectrum already.

I have been reading that autism is highly heritable because of the studies they have done on twins, and families exist with many members on the spectrum (mine included) and they are known as something like "multiplex" families (if I have that terminology correct). It is far from rare to read about families with many members on the spectrum.

And when you think how many thousands if not millions of undiagnosed Aspies and auties there are because of some countries being 3rd world or behind the times with diagnosing, there are a lot more on the spectrum than any current figures would suggest.


Well, like I said it was only a guess , what we think it might be based on the current figures of people with ASD in the general population (no more than 2% ) in the highest estimates. I don't think there would be that many more when you add undiagnosed who actually have it. So in my personal opinion the rate in the population is close to what current figures show. There's no point arguing this as it's speculation. Now for the research done on Schizophrenia which is also highly heritable, the % chance with a parent s with Schizophrenia will have a child with Schizophrenia is still low in terms of pure numbers - still under 10%. This I can find a source for if you'd like because I took neurophychology of abnormal development and looked at the heritability of schizophrenia in depth. There's still a greater chance the person will have a normal child than a schizophrenic child even though the disorder is highly heritable because the % of people in the whole population that have it is low.


The child of a one parent with schizophrenia is several times as likely to develop schizophrenia than someone with no parents with schizophrenia. The statistics vary somewhat, for various reasons, but as a guide if the based prevalence of schizophrenia in the general population is 1% then likelihood of a child of one parent with schizophrenia is around 13%. The risk is increased for the child of two schizophrenics to around 46%.

I don't think these can be readily extrapolated to ASD as different conditions, and groups of conditions, have different patterns of causation. However, it is likely there is likely a significantly increased prevalence of ASD children to ASD parents relative to non-ASD parents.



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04 Jun 2013, 10:01 am

whirlingmind wrote:
daydreamer84 wrote:
Well, like I said it was only a guess , what we think it might be based on the current figures of people with ASD in the general population (no more than 2% ) in the highest estimates. I don't think there would be that many more when you add undiagnosed who actually have it. So in my personal opinion the rate in the population is close to what current figures show. There's no point arguing this as it's speculation. Now for the research done on Schizophrenia which is also highly heritable, the % chance with a parent s with Schizophrenia will have a child with Schizophrenia is still low in terms of pure numbers - still under 10%. This I can find a source for if you'd like because I took neurophychology of abnormal development and looked at the heritability of schizophrenia in depth. There's still a greater chance the person will have a normal child than a schizophrenic child even though the disorder is highly heritable because the % of people in the whole population that have it is low.


I doubt you have factored in the genetic link between autism, schizophrenia, ADHD, bipolar and severe depression. As scientists have recently discovered this link (and many of us on here have a close relative with schizophrenia or other of those conditions, myself included), there is probably also a high chance that if you are autistic you will have a child with one of those conditions. Likewise, if a close relative in yours or your partner's families already suffers one of those conditions that will increase the risk of you having an autistic child too. All of that would add up to higher odds overall of having an autistic child, it's not only autism in the parents.

I do not believe whatsoever that the current figures are correct. Many, many females have trouble even getting assessed for AS let-alone diagnosed and many are misdiagnosed with other disorders. They reckon (at the most generous guess) that the rates for male to female with autism is 4:1. I believe it's 50/50 (the NAS say there is an increasing stream of women coming to their clinic and they estimate at the moment 2:1 which is an unofficial figure, so is not in the statistics and the rate of females is continuing to rise) so that means a lot of unaccounted for autistics. I've not read of any studies done on whether certain racial groups have different risks, and if some, such as 3rd world countries have a higher risk for instance, no-one would know.


Doesnt change a darn thing daydreamer said.

What daydreamer said (a) nobody really knows how any of these conditions appear (youre just reiterating that point), (b) people are born with autism, (c) so its probably genetic, or epigentic, or a combination, so (d) just go by the commonsense rule of thumb that ANY pair of parents can have autistic kids-but that spectrum parents are probably somewhat more likely to.

Thats all she,and I, were saying (or anyone CAN say at this point probably).

The scientists dont even know the specifics yet so just use common sense.

Youre making it more complicated than it is.



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04 Jun 2013, 11:12 am

Yes. Which is why I am planning to adopt if I ever want kids.



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04 Jun 2013, 1:32 pm

UDG wrote:
daydreamer84 wrote:
whirlingmind wrote:
daydreamer84 wrote:
naturalplastic wrote:
If you were neurotypical, and you married a neurotypical, you could still have children who were full blown low functioning autistics. Most autistics ARE born to NT parents. So why would you be exempt from the possibility?

Are you more likely than the average parent to have autistic kids because you have aspergers? Probably slightly more likely.


Your children are probably more likely to have autism of any kind than the average person's children but it;s still a low chance. Hypothetically say there's a 1% chance that an autistic child will be born to a normal couple in the general population - you might have a 2 or 3 or 4% chance. It's still a greatly increased chance, hypothetically (at-least double) but there;s still a 90 something percent chance that you'll not have an autistic child-most likely you still won't.


I don't know where you got your figures from but I would say that is wholly incorrect. If you consider, that (as you yourself said) an autistic child can be born to NT parents, and that many Aspies/auties have a strong likelihood of having a child on the spectrum, then I would say that makes it a lot more probably than the % you state.

I may be totally off-base here, but if you imagine what % of the world population is on the spectrum, and then add to that the % of autistic children born to NT parents, I think it would be a high risk for someone on the spectrum already.

I have been reading that autism is highly heritable because of the studies they have done on twins, and families exist with many members on the spectrum (mine included) and they are known as something like "multiplex" families (if I have that terminology correct). It is far from rare to read about families with many members on the spectrum.

And when you think how many thousands if not millions of undiagnosed Aspies and auties there are because of some countries being 3rd world or behind the times with diagnosing, there are a lot more on the spectrum than any current figures would suggest.


Well, like I said it was only a guess , what we think it might be based on the current figures of people with ASD in the general population (no more than 2% ) in the highest estimates. I don't think there would be that many more when you add undiagnosed who actually have it. So in my personal opinion the rate in the population is close to what current figures show. There's no point arguing this as it's speculation. Now for the research done on Schizophrenia which is also highly heritable, the % chance with a parent s with Schizophrenia will have a child with Schizophrenia is still low in terms of pure numbers - still under 10%. This I can find a source for if you'd like because I took neurophychology of abnormal development and looked at the heritability of schizophrenia in depth. There's still a greater chance the person will have a normal child than a schizophrenic child even though the disorder is highly heritable because the % of people in the whole population that have it is low.


The child of a one parent with schizophrenia is several times as likely to develop schizophrenia than someone with no parents with schizophrenia. The statistics vary somewhat, for various reasons, but as a guide if the based prevalence of schizophrenia in the general population is 1% then likelihood of a child of one parent with schizophrenia is around 13%. The risk is increased for the child of two schizophrenics to around 46%.

I don't think these can be readily extrapolated to ASD as different conditions, and groups of conditions, have different patterns of causation. However, it is likely there is likely a significantly increased prevalence of ASD children to ASD parents relative to non-ASD parents.


Sorry, I saw 9% instead of 13% for the increased chances of having a child with Schizophrenia if one parent has schizophrenia but that data was a few years old ( from when I took a course on it) which is why I said under 10%. Still if there's a 13% chance that a child will have Schizophrenia because dad has it , say, then dad is Still WAY MORE LIKELY to have a child without Schizophrenia in pure numbers, which was my point . I know having 2 parents parents with it increases chances a lot more but since he has ASD and his wife doesn't I was only referencing the one parent data. Still it's under a 50% chance that even with 2 parents the kid will have Schizophrenia , even then it's only about a 50/50 chance. Therefore 2 parents with it would be just as likely to have a kid w/o the disorder as they would to have one with it. As for extrapolating, I know you can't use this data and talk about ASD and know exactly but I'm making a general somewhat educated guess based on the fact that the 2 disorders have about the same estimated heritability. SO, 13% vs. 1% is a significantly increased chance , I agree with you there- that someone with ASD is SIGNIFICANTLY more likely to have a child with ASD than an NT is but they're also SIGNIFICANTLY more likely to have an NT child than an ASD child. Say the chances are higher that one parent with ASD will have a kid with it then with Schizophrenia , maybe 20% or 30% -that's a ridiculously increased chance compared to the chances of any old person in the general population having a kid with it. Nevertheless there's still an 80% or 70% chance the person will have an NT child and not a child with ASD- they'd still be more likely to have a child without it-WAY more likely.



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04 Jun 2013, 3:25 pm

Well, I don't believe I am bucking the trend, by being someone with an ASC with an NT husband having both children with ASCs...


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