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Joined: 2 Mar 2015
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11 Mar 2024, 2:17 pm

I have been browsing this site:

It has amazing infographics that clearly display many topics of interest regarding "neurodiversity".

I really like that the site has merged symptoms between autism and other conditions. My son has ADHD, my husband has Asperger's, and my mom has bipolar disorder. I have noticed that there are many symptoms that are shared in all three. There seem to be just a few that are specific to one only.

Common to ASD, Bipolar, and ADHD:
*Sensory differences
*Executive functioning difficulties
*Social gullibility/increased victimhood
*Eating differences/disorders
*Atypical interests
*Impulse control
*Emotional differences
*Sleep problems
*Energy sapped by social interaction

These issues may look the same from an observer, but may be due to entirely different causes. For example, I didn't see that last item on the neurodivergent site, but I know it happens and I have lived with people experiencing it for different reasons.

My aspie husband is exhausted from a meeting at work because he is keeping up with people's faces and having to listen to them speak. Especially if they are also looking at him and so he has to be polite. My ADHD son is exhausted from hanging out with other kids because he can't remember what is going on or keep up with the conversation. My bipolar mom would be exhausted after going to church because she would be trying so hard not to say or do something weird.

*I* am not exhausted after social interaction. I can talk to any person about any thing at any time. Some times it's more delightful than other times, but I really can't think of many times that it put me out to do it at all. I can also spend all day alone not talking to anyone. This is simply something I can do that I know some others cannot do. Most of the things on that list I would say I don't experience.

I won't make this post even longer, but there are things specific to each type of person that I think are unique to that one type (autism, bipolar, adhd) that do not exist in the others. Either skills or challenges. My main point was that there are so many interesting things shared and most people don't realize it.


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Joined: 6 Feb 2024
Age: 23
Gender: Female
Posts: 121
Location: Texas

19 Mar 2024, 1:56 am

Recently I noticed a lot of discussion online around the "validity" of self-diagnosis and I think a lot of the anti-self diagnosis points are boiled down to this overlap and understanding of similar experiences across different disorders.

A lot of people argue that because there are so many overlaps, it is difficult to understand which disorder is causing the symptoms and traits without a professional screening and diagnosis. That's very true but with understanding the cause and understanding other disorders, someone can find which one is the best fit and which they should seek help or diagnosis for when they can't start with expensive psych evals. But I think that even if some self-diagnosed autistic people might have Bipolar, ADHD, or a disorder with similar overlap instead of autism, they will still have similar experiences to share with and help the autistic community online. It's about shared experiences and advice, not only a shared diagnosis. There is no point in excluding people that share similar experiences.

When autism awareness was increasing online, specifically on tiktok and twitter, around 2019 a few of my friends and family suspected they might be autistic especially since they're related to me lol so they went to psychologists and got assessed. One was diagnosed with OCD and two ADHD. None autistic. They realized they may have similar experiences with me and still do share a lot but they understand the differences better now that they know more about OCD and ADHD. They sometimes come to me and ask for advice or share their own experiences and stuff. It's kinda nice.


Joined: 26 Mar 2023
Age: 43
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18 May 2024, 8:15 pm

elotepreparado wrote:
Recently I noticed a lot of discussion online around the "validity" of self-diagnosis and I think a lot of the anti-self diagnosis points are boiled down to this overlap and understanding of similar experiences across different disorders.

Differential diagnosis is an important thing to keep in mind any time you're considering what's going on. There's often multiple reasons for one or two symptoms/traits and a good doctor will be in a better position to figure out which one it is.

That being said, even doctors suck at diagnosing these sorts of things these days. Things have improved, a lot, but it's still something where the evaluation is only as good as the source data, the criteria and the experience of the diagnosing physician. I definitely have ADHD and what is, after treatment, sub-clinical OCD. In terms of diagnoses, Bipolar, schizotypal, schizoid personality disorder, schizoaffective disorder, major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, somatization disorder pretty much covers it. Some of those are specifically not allowed to be diagnosed for the same person and the only thing that they have in common is being common look alikes for what is now ASD.

Schizoid Personality Disorder may well be just ASD with extreme masking and dissociation.

EDIT: It is worth noting that an ADHD and OCD diagnoses are easier to get and there's a fair number of times where it's an accurate diagnosis, but leaves out the ASD that can hide with that. Personally, I've definitely in the OCD+ADHD boat, but I've got a ton of sensory abnormalities that aren't covered by that and I'm as likely to repeat things because I like the repetition as because I think something bad will happen as a result. As I beat back the OCD, it's gotten tot he point where nearly all the repetition is either because it feels good or to avoid a defined and very reasonable consequence of screwing it up.


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Joined: 29 Oct 2011
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19 May 2024, 9:05 am

I used to consider if I have all the same 3 labels. For years.

But I had high doubts that I actually had ADHD and BPD -- that I'm only autistic who happened to be "ill" in some way, it exacerbates my executive dysfunction and is emulating ADHD and BPD like symptoms.

My own age, my history, and all my internal contexts that conflicted with the behaviors made me very skeptical from ever self-diagnosing myself with the labels that I never formally assessed with.

But to make my long story short; I cannot rely on professionals due to financial issues, communication issues, and their outdated knowledge and beliefs.

And I'm also right about myself.

So I DIYed, and just in span of only 2 months, I got rid of my ADHD and BPD like symptoms.

Because it was a form of illness; one is unadjustable hormonal fluctuations and I had to even that.
No fluctuations, no more 'BPD' simply because my wiring cannot adjust to subtle internal changes.
Real BPD is not this easy nor simple.

The other one was my head misbehaving itself because of some emotional hung up.
No hidden trauma, no head defense mechanism, no waste of headspace and brain power hiding the trauma by creating some stupid thought loops...
Meant no more inattention, no more impulsivity, no more chronic background irritability, no more internal distractions, etc...

It was not a part of my wiring -- it just feeds to my wiring's weaknesses.
It just proved that I'm (a formally diagnosed) autistic who's been struggling with some unhealthy internal issue (that can be mistaken for ADHD/BPD).

I only have my own way of knowing -- my own formula of sorts.

I don't know what kind of path others are usually take or what processes they do whenever they consider self diagnosis themselves with different labels other than seeing themselves relating in other people within the same labels -- which is not something that usually happens to me even among autistics, let alone anything else.

I couldn't do the logical, clinical textbook methods because I was too busy 'being too emotional'.

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