Anyone been in this situation? Advice?

Page 1 of 3 [ 43 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

Neutrino
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2012
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 45

29 Apr 2012, 2:41 pm

I don't know what's "wrong" with me. I don't have an AS diagnosis and I'm not completely sure I have AS. A lot of the time I think I do, but sometimes I doubt. I don't know whether I have AS, OCD, OCPD, ADD, Social Anxiety Disorder or something else. Or some of it. Or all of it. Or none of it (that would suck as I would be back on square one then). I'm pretty sure I'm not "normal" though. Anyway, not knowing drives me crazy. I feel so agitated all the time and I can't stop thinking about this whole situation. I think I really need help with some things. Things such as my way of thinking, my social issues, my anxiety issues and my aggression issues.

For a while I've been identifying with AS and I want to try to get an official diagnosis but I'm quite scared they won't understand me. I'm scared of getting the wrong diagnosis as well. What if I've got AS and they won't see it because I'm female and I've heard it's quite difficult diagnosing women.

Not sure what I want to get out of writing this, but I think I'm wondering if any of you have been through the same thing? Have you got any advice? And is it really true that it's more difficult to diagnose women?



falonsayswoah
Yellow-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Woodpecker

User avatar

Joined: 26 Mar 2012
Age: 26
Gender: Female
Posts: 59
Location: Oregon, USA

29 Apr 2012, 4:46 pm

I can't really give you any advice, but that is what I am going through right now.


_________________
Diagnosis: Major Depressive Affective Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Mild PTSD, Agoraphobia with Panic Disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder of childhood with hyperactivity (more inattentive, though), Mild OCD, Social Phobia, Tourette's Syndrome


MotherKnowsBest
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 14 Nov 2009
Age: 47
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,196

29 Apr 2012, 5:12 pm

I understand what you're feeling. I was the same. Sometimes sure I was autistic and other times sure I wasn't. Of course I now understand more about spectrum disorders and how you don't have to have all the symptoms all the time for the diagnosis to be right. You just have to have a significant impairment in all 3 triad areas.

When I eventually began to suspect autism I raised it with a therapist I was seeing at the time for PTSD. She said she couldn't see it and didn't think I'd be very successful in even getting an assessment, but I could always ask and see what happened.

I saw my GP and said I wanted to be assessed for autism. He asked why, couldn't see it himself but referred me to the adult mental health people.

Had an initial appointment with them. Similar to what happened at the GP and they said they would refer me again to an 'autism in adults' specialist.

Saw the specialist, had lots of assessments. Got a diagnosis. The specialist then said that he knew what the results were going to be within a few minutes of meeting me.

I guess what I'm trying to say is professionals with little experience of autism may completely miss it. Professionals who really know their stuff when it comes to autism won't.



lepierce3
Emu Egg
Emu Egg

User avatar

Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Gender: Female
Posts: 7

29 Apr 2012, 6:29 pm

I'm sorry I can't really be of help either, but I wanted to let you know what you're not alone. In fact your entire post was something that I could have written myself. I figure that if I don't have AS, then I have Tourettes, OCD, ADD, and probably a whole bunch of other things too! Which would be a lot scarier then just being able to lump everything under one diagnosis...



JanuaryMan
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 1 Jan 2012
Age: 34
Gender: Male
Posts: 3,465

29 Apr 2012, 6:48 pm

I sometimes feel this way, that I do not have a condition or conditions. I am only briefly reminded that I do when I venture out into the world on my own and not being accompanied. In fact, at times as vein as it sounds I feel more normal than others with the same condition only to find I'm just as aspie or sometimes more aspie than them and it's just me having a distorted view of my own self.

Does this happen to you? You feel normal most of the time, like in Internet discussions, going to bars with friends, around family or whatever but find certain situations make you question your normality?



Neutrino
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2012
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 45

30 Apr 2012, 1:59 am

JanuaryMan wrote:
I sometimes feel this way, that I do not have a condition or conditions. I am only briefly reminded that I do when I venture out into the world on my own and not being accompanied. In fact, at times as vein as it sounds I feel more normal than others with the same condition only to find I'm just as aspie or sometimes more aspie than them and it's just me having a distorted view of my own self.

Does this happen to you? You feel normal most of the time, like in Internet discussions, going to bars with friends, around family or whatever but find certain situations make you question your normality?


Yeah, I feel normal sometimes. When I'm with my family or my boyfriend for example. Ok, not always when I'm with my boyfriend but some of the time. I really question my normality when it comes to social situations. When it comes to hanging out with more than one or two people at once. Then I'm all quiet, just sitting there and thinking of something else. People have always thought I'm shy, which I'm not. I just don't speak because I don't know what to say and how to act. I don't know where to have my arms and I always manage to turn the conversation back to myself and my own interests.

I also question my normality when it comes to routines. I always need to do things in a certain way. Otherwise it's wrong. And it feels wrong. I need to put my clothes on in the same order, I need to do my morning routine in the same order, I need to eat the same things for breakfast, I need to walk the same way to places, I need to sit at the same spot in the sofa etc.

I could give you quite a few examples. But what if I'm actually just imagining that I have a "condition"? What if I'm just an extreme introvert? I doubt it. But what if?



Verdandi
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 7 Dec 2010
Age: 50
Gender: Female
Posts: 12,587
Location: University of California Sunnydale (fictional location - Real location Olympia, WA)

30 Apr 2012, 2:17 am

I most often feel "normal" which is to say I feel like myself. I don't know how ostensibly "normal" people feel, so I can't compare how I feel to how they might feel. Maybe they feel like themselves and consider that normal as well?

Anyway, I went through a lot of doubt about whether or not I had it. I've sort of skirted around it from 2002, when I first really started reading about autism. I concluded I very probably do have it in 2008, and then promptly "forgot" is perhaps the best description. In 2010, I found out about ADHD and thought that explained all the things that made me wonder about autism before, and that held out until October or November of 2010, at which point I started to seriously consider it again. In December, I was mostly convinced, and in the following April (a year ago) I was officially diagnosed.

I still wonder, because to me, I see everything I can see. The things that I can't see - that I am impaired in perceiving - may as well not exist to me most of the time, so it's hard to keep certain impairments (mostly the social kind) in mind. When I take tests, I tend to score fairly low on face reading and interpreting social situations depicted in pictures, and other things that I have been surprised to learn that NTs are relatively good at.

Other traits are not quite so hard for me to perceive, though - sensory overload, stimming, my intense interests (even I figured out the intensity was unusual when I found other people simply didn't share my enthusiasm. But I just thought I had to learn to talk about other things, rather than assuming there was something "different" about me that could be diagnosed).

I think it's normal to have doubts, too. Both before and after diagnosis.

You mention routines before asking what if you're an extreme introvert. What happens when your routines are broken? Introversion doesn't really make one fixated on maintaining routines, after all.

I hope you can get your answers.



Verdandi
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 7 Dec 2010
Age: 50
Gender: Female
Posts: 12,587
Location: University of California Sunnydale (fictional location - Real location Olympia, WA)

30 Apr 2012, 2:27 am

Oh, advice:

I would say, if you start to doubt/wonder, it might help to go back over the things that make you think you're on the spectrum.

As for diagnosing women: I don't know that it's harder to diagnose women. I have seen several women on this forum who had little difficulty getting a diagnosis (and I guess I can include myself in that group). I think what MotherKnowsBest said is how it works:

Quote:
I guess what I'm trying to say is professionals with little experience of autism may completely miss it. Professionals who really know their stuff when it comes to autism won't.


A lot of professionals are profoundly ignorant about autism and will assume all kinds of things that make it clear they don't really know anything. I still remember a woman who posted about how an autism specialist told her that she couldn't have AS because she didn't act like Rain Man. That's one possible way an autistic person can look and act, but autistic people have a lot of variety.

The best thing for me was just getting a diagnosis.



Neutrino
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2012
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 45

30 Apr 2012, 2:30 am

Verdandi wrote:
I most often feel "normal" which is to say I feel like myself. I don't know how ostensibly "normal" people feel, so I can't compare how I feel to how they might feel. Maybe they feel like themselves and consider that normal as well?

Anyway, I went through a lot of doubt about whether or not I had it. I've sort of skirted around it from 2002, when I first really started reading about autism. I concluded I very probably do have it in 2008, and then promptly "forgot" is perhaps the best description. In 2010, I found out about ADHD and thought that explained all the things that made me wonder about autism before, and that held out until October or November of 2010, at which point I started to seriously consider it again. In December, I was mostly convinced, and in the following April (a year ago) I was officially diagnosed.

I still wonder, because to me, I see everything I can see. The things that I can't see - that I am impaired in perceiving - may as well not exist to me most of the time, so it's hard to keep certain impairments (mostly the social kind) in mind. When I take tests, I tend to score fairly low on face reading and interpreting social situations depicted in pictures, and other things that I have been surprised to learn that NTs are relatively good at.

Other traits are not quite so hard for me to perceive, though - sensory overload, stimming, my intense interests (even I figured out the intensity was unusual when I found other people simply didn't share my enthusiasm. But I just thought I had to learn to talk about other things, rather than assuming there was something "different" about me that could be diagnosed).

I think it's normal to have doubts, too. Both before and after diagnosis.

You mention routines before asking what if you're an extreme introvert. What happens when your routines are broken? Introversion doesn't really make one fixated on maintaining routines, after all.

I hope you can get your answers.


What do you mean by "that I am impaired in perceiving"?

I think I'm rather good at interpreting facial expressions (I'm not good at showing them myself though), but I'm less good at interpreting tone of voice. I like sarcasm, but I'm not always sure when people are sarcastic. I don't know when people are joking if it's not exactly my kind of humour.

About the routines. If I break my own routines (which basically never happens) it's fairly ok. I can change my own routines. But if someone else break them I get annoyed. For example, if someone's taken the locker I usually put my things in at work I get really frustrated and kind of swear quietly to myself. I think when people change my plans for me it's even worse. I can change my own plans. That's ok. But if I've planned something and someone else suddenly (less than one day in advance) changes that I get seriously angry or annoyed. So angry or annoyed that I go completely blank for a while, almost shake a bit and can't seem to understand why the heck someone would do something so bad to me. Do you know what I mean?



Verdandi
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 7 Dec 2010
Age: 50
Gender: Female
Posts: 12,587
Location: University of California Sunnydale (fictional location - Real location Olympia, WA)

30 Apr 2012, 2:43 am

Neutrino wrote:
What do you mean by "that I am impaired in perceiving"?


I mean I miss a lot of social cues and subtext, and for me it is simply "not there." So if it's not there, how do I tell I'm missing it? Most of the time I don't, although people sometimes tell me. I was able to make sense of this in therapy by talking it through and having my therapist explain the things that I probably missed in social interactions that would have made them make more sense.

Quote:
I think I'm rather good at interpreting facial expressions (I'm not good at showing them myself though), but I'm less good at interpreting tone of voice. I like sarcasm, but I'm not always sure when people are sarcastic. I don't know when people are joking if it's not exactly my kind of humour.


Interesting. I scored higher on interpreting tone of voice than I did on facial expressions, although I couldn't say which is more accurate. I once got into a huge argument with this guy I knew who was doing his thesis on nonverbal communication, and I found it simply impossible to believe that the majority of face to face communication involves tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language. I knew they played a role, but I always considered them minor relative to what people actually say.

I don't really have much emotional affect - I have been told I don't really do facial expressions (unless I deliberately try to do some - like I rolled my eyes at my niece last month when she was being a jerk).

I can detect sarcasm sometimes, but not always. I appreciate humor when I recognize it, although I don't really laugh at a lot of jokes. I might say "that's really funny" instead. I do laugh sometimes, just very infrequently.

Quote:
About the routines. If I break my own routines (which basically never happens) it's fairly ok. I can change my own routines. But if someone else break them I get annoyed. For example, if someone's taken the locker I usually put my things in at work I get really frustrated and kind of swear quietly to myself. I think when people change my plans for me it's even worse. I can change my own plans. That's ok. But if I've planned something and someone else suddenly (less than one day in advance) changes that I get seriously angry or annoyed. So angry or annoyed that I go completely blank for a while, almost shake a bit and can't seem to understand why the heck someone would do something so bad to me. Do you know what I mean?


Yes, I think I do. I have similar issues with routines although my worst experience left me acting like I was half my age (34 at the time, so 17ish) for about a week. In that particular case, I had a bathroom in this large house mostly to myself. One day, without any warning, someone else decided to have that bathroom remodeled. The bathroom needed the remodeling, but it meant I couldn't use it, and it messed me up for days.

One common disruption in my routine is when going somewhere - like on the first or second of every month I go do a bit of shopping. Sometimes more people come along than usual, sometimes we stop at places that no one warned me about. I hate these things, and if you apply enough of them, I'll just refuse to go.



Neutrino
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 8 Apr 2012
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 45

30 Apr 2012, 2:58 am

Verdandi wrote:
Interesting. I scored higher on interpreting tone of voice than I did on facial expressions, although I couldn't say which is more accurate. I once got into a huge argument with this guy I knew who was doing his thesis on nonverbal communication, and I found it simply impossible to believe that the majority of face to face communication involves tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language. I knew they played a role, but I always considered them minor relative to what people actually say.


I've never taken an official test but I've taken a few online ones. On the reading the mind in the eyes (or whatever it's called) I think I score just below average or average. Did a tone of voice test as well and scored quite a lot below average on that. I mean, I know when people are angry and stuff but I think my biggest problem is determining whether a person is serious or not. Often I have to ask "are you serious?" or "sarcasm?".

Verdandi wrote:
I don't really have much emotional affect - I have been told I don't really do facial expressions (unless I deliberately try to do some - like I rolled my eyes at my niece last month when she was being a jerk).


I mostly have a "neutral" face. People often ask me why I'm angry or why I'm sad or if I'm ok even though I'm perfectly fine. Of course I'm not fine all the time, but you know what I mean, right?

Verdandi wrote:
neutrino wrote:
About the routines. If I break my own routines (which basically never happens) it's fairly ok. I can change my own routines. But if someone else break them I get annoyed. For example, if someone's taken the locker I usually put my things in at work I get really frustrated and kind of swear quietly to myself. I think when people change my plans for me it's even worse. I can change my own plans. That's ok. But if I've planned something and someone else suddenly (less than one day in advance) changes that I get seriously angry or annoyed. So angry or annoyed that I go completely blank for a while, almost shake a bit and can't seem to understand why the heck someone would do something so bad to me. Do you know what I mean?


Yes, I think I do. I have similar issues with routines although my worst experience left me acting like I was half my age (34 at the time, so 17ish) for about a week. In that particular case, I had a bathroom in this large house mostly to myself. One day, without any warning, someone else decided to have that bathroom remodeled. The bathroom needed the remodeling, but it meant I couldn't use it, and it messed me up for days.

One common disruption in my routine is when going somewhere - like on the first or second of every month I go do a bit of shopping. Sometimes more people come along than usual, sometimes we stop at places that no one warned me about. I hate these things, and if you apply enough of them, I'll just refuse to go.


I know what you mean. Also, I hate when people (friends) are like "hey let's go to the cafe" and I say "ok" and then they mention that like four of their friends will be coming along as well. People I don't know. Then all I want to do is run away.

Anyway, do you reckon an extreme introvert would have such problems with people breaking their routines or changing their plans? I know for sure I'm an introvert. Definitely. But I doubt I'm "just" an introvert. Do you know what I mean?



FishStickNick
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 4 Apr 2012
Age: 36
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,298
Location: Right here, silly!

30 Apr 2012, 3:04 am

JanuaryMan wrote:
I sometimes feel this way, that I do not have a condition or conditions. I am only briefly reminded that I do when I venture out into the world on my own and not being accompanied. In fact, at times as vein as it sounds I feel more normal than others with the same condition only to find I'm just as aspie or sometimes more aspie than them and it's just me having a distorted view of my own self.

Does this happen to you? You feel normal most of the time, like in Internet discussions, going to bars with friends, around family or whatever but find certain situations make you question your normality?

Definitely. I have yet to get a diagnosis, but there are times where I realize, "yikes, I'm a walking stereotype." Other times, I'm not so sure.

Quote:
When I take tests, I tend to score fairly low on face reading and interpreting social situations depicted in pictures, and other things that I have been surprised to learn that NTs are relatively good at.

I took one test online where I had to identify people's emotions based solely off a photo of a group of people. Unless it was something obvious like a smile , I couldn't tell one expression from another--everyone looked like they were just thinking.

Quote:
I've never taken an official test but I've taken a few online ones. On the reading the mind in the eyes (or whatever it's called) I think I score just below average or average. Did a tone of voice test as well and scored quite a lot below average on that. I mean, I know when people are angry and stuff but I think my biggest problem is determining whether a person is serious or not. Often I have to ask "are you serious?" or "sarcasm?".

I did OK on the reading-the-eyes one, though it did take a fair amount of thought. I haven't taken a tone-of-voice test, though, but I do sometimes get confused as to whether someone is being facetious or not.



Last edited by FishStickNick on 30 Apr 2012, 3:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

rebbieh
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,597
Location: The North.

30 Apr 2012, 3:08 am

FishStickNick wrote:
I took one test online where I had to identify people's emotions based solely off a photo of a group of people. Unless it was something obvious like a smile , I couldn't tell one expression from another--everyone looked like they were just thinking.


What test was that?



FishStickNick
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 4 Apr 2012
Age: 36
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,298
Location: Right here, silly!

30 Apr 2012, 3:12 am

rebbieh wrote:
FishStickNick wrote:
I took one test online where I had to identify people's emotions based solely off a photo of a group of people. Unless it was something obvious like a smile , I couldn't tell one expression from another--everyone looked like they were just thinking.


What test was that?

I believe it was the EIQ:

http://www.queendom.com/tests/access_pa ... gTest=3037

It has one portion where it gives you a series of photos of groups of people without any context, and asks a few questions on them. It then gives you the same photos with some context, and asks you a few questions on each. I found it easier to decipher knowing the context; I was guessing otherwise.



rebbieh
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,597
Location: The North.

30 Apr 2012, 3:14 am

FishStickNick wrote:
rebbieh wrote:
FishStickNick wrote:
I took one test online where I had to identify people's emotions based solely off a photo of a group of people. Unless it was something obvious like a smile , I couldn't tell one expression from another--everyone looked like they were just thinking.


What test was that?

I believe it was the EIQ:

http://www.queendom.com/tests/access_pa ... gTest=3037

It has one portion where it gives you a series of photos of groups of people without any context, and asks a few questions on them. It then gives you the same photos with some context, and asks you a few questions on each. I found it easier to decipher knowing the context; I was guessing otherwise.


Yeah, I've taken that test too. I don't know exactly what I scored but I scored way below average on the whole thing.