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Joined: 7 Feb 2008
Age: 39
Gender: Male
Posts: 115

08 Feb 2008, 8:00 pm

Hi all. I'm very new to all of this, and have posted a brief self-introduction under another thread, but I'll elaborate a bit before I get onto my first question on this forum. I'm 28 and always had what I now recognise to be the classical 'aspie' traits (never really 'getting' other people, difficulty undertsanding social circumstances, obsessive interests, dislike of eye contact, hypersensitivity to certain things etc). Its caused me a lot of unhappiness over the years through bullying etc at school and the constant feeling that I'm the odd one out. I haven't always used the best coping mechanisms to deal with this (becoming a caricature-ish 'entertainer' in groups, drinking far too much at times to deal with anxiety, violent outbursts, reclusiveness etc), but over the years I've been able to deal with things a little better, though still awkwardly.

A few days ago I came across an article online about Asperger's and it all fell into place. I'm still reading up a lot about it and coming to terms with things but its been a massive weight off my mind to know that I'm not just weird. I finally realise that its OK to be like this and don't need to constantly try to be like 'everybody else'. I've asked a few people about their opinions on whether I have this (I'm not really that bothered as I'm 100% sure this is me) and they've all agreed that the descriptions fit me exactly. One of these people is a nurse who used to care for autistic and severely affected Asperger's adolescents, so I guess she knows what she's talking about. I guess I'm quite lucky though because all say I don't appear too affected by it in terms of day to day life.

My first question though is about an official diagnosis. I would like one for my own satisfaction and a 'black-and-white' confirmation that I haven't had 28 years of exclusion and awkwardness for nothing. The problem is that I'm currently training to become a nurse (not a usual aspie career choice I know) and several people have said that getting an official diagnosis would be 'career suicide' because of assumptions made by occupational health assessors etc. They suggest leaving it until I have qualified and have some experience behind me and can get some good references etc. What do you think about this?

I don't want to take any risks at this stage of my career because its the only job I've had that's really been 'me'. Although there's a lot of contact with other people which I find very stressful in a less structured social setting, I find the numerous guidelines about professional conduct and having strong boundaries in how I can and can't relate to people very helpful. I also enjoy the structure of ward routine and the huge amount of information about protocols and procedures very rewarding to learn. I've had a lot of positive feedback from people I've worked with and although I don't see myself in the sort of setting that involves a lot of emotional support-giving I have been told I would excel in something more technical like cardiology or intensive care which is where I hope to end up anyway.

I hope someone can help me with this, and where to look for any information regarding occupational health regulations and Asperger's in the UK would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.


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Joined: 11 Apr 2007
Age: 67
Gender: Female
Posts: 3,189
Location: Vancouver not BC, Washington not DC

08 Feb 2008, 8:21 pm

It sounds like you're doing well. Since you are, and since talking about asperger's would be career suicide, I would talk about it only here or in a support group in another city where nobody knows you. I would hate to see you lose what you are passionate about.
There is no reason to be ashamed about having asperger's, but there's no reason to divulge everything about yourself either.


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Joined: 27 Jan 2007
Gender: Female
Posts: 3,039
Location: Arizona

08 Feb 2008, 8:40 pm

If you needed an IEP or some sort of assistance, then a dx would be needed. But you are a productive adult not needing help with your AS.

BTW I am the same and eschew official dx.

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Still Moofy after all these years
It is by will alone that I set my mind in motion
cynicism occurs immediately upon pressing your brain's start button