I'm not quite sure that I belong here, but hello!

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Trempton
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19 Sep 2012, 9:17 pm

Hello. I'm a sixteen-year old girl. Somehow this turned more into a search for an answer before I seek professional diagnosis, but really, that's the reason I joined the website. Please excuse the length, I know that you probably don't care. :P

For the majority of my life, I've considered myself neurotypical. I was a bit weird as a kid, but that was it. There was never a time where my parents/teachers openly questioned my behavior. Recently, however, a clever friend of mine suggested that I was mildly autistic. At first, I dismissed this, as she's also suggested in the past that I'm both asexual and void of emotions, which I know to be untrue. Then, when I looked deeper into what it means to have Asperger's, I was absolutely shocked; there are certain commonalities I simply couldn't, and can't, overlook.


- I've never been a social butterfly and am frequently told that I'm awkward and inadvertently rude. Personally, I don't feel awkward. For the most part, I feel comfortable speaking in front of others. The problem is that people seem to misinterpret me and infer from our conversations that I'm condescending and unfriendly. Additionally, I've been told that I go on about topics nobody is interested in, but I generally realize that (I think).

- When I was a kid, I was particular about following a schedule, but I've really grown out of that. Now the urge to be structured occurs infrequently. It's kind of strange.

- Also, when I was younger I could care less about clothes, hair, or anything that my peers did. I had my interest, and if they were tampered with, I went ballistic. I didn't even start bathing regularly until age 11.

- I have a vivid recollection of my childhood. My earliest memory is a dream I had when I was three. From there on, there aren't many spots that are entirely blank.

- In my life, I've ALWAYS required an obsession of sorts. From age 3 - 9, I was obsessed with Pokemon. Ages 10-12 are marked by an absolute obsession with anime and Japanese culture. When I became more concerned about fitting in with my peers, I wanted to be a cheerleader and watch typical teen shows. Fortunately, I didn't have the coordination to dance, so I broke away from that and turned to acting, which I still love. At 14, I became deeply religious and studied the Bible and became Youth for Christ president at my school. The only thing that rivaled my passion for Christ and theatre was Harry Potter. At 15, I realized the absurdity of organized religion and instead turned to science. Now, at 16, I still love Harry Potter & theatre and am obsessed with all branches of science. These things are all I really think about. Maybe this is normal, I don't know. But it always seemed to separate me from my peers, like these things were more important to me than actually making friends. I can't even count how many times I made up excuses to not visit friends because I was too involved in whatever I was involved with.

- A ridiculous lack of coordination. It's like I have no kinesthetic reasoning. I've even been told that I "run like a f---ing retard", which I thought was a really unkind thing to be told. I also couldn't ride a bike properly until age nine, which might be normal. What I suspect is unusual is that when I tried to ride a bike at age twelve I had completely forgotten! It took twenty minutes to relearn and an hour to ride well.

- I only began to build healthy-type relationships with people about a year ago. Before that, all friendships I had (save for two) were meaningless, and I seemed to take the relationship more seriously than the other person did.

- I suffer from sensory overload that leads to panic attacks. For example, if there are several things going on around me, my heart rate goes out of control and I feel a sharp pain in my chest. Mostly this is provoked by auditory stimulus, but it has also happened with too much movement. I do question the severity of this, though, because I've never had a breakdown where I lost control or shouted or anything.

- I struggle to read/recognize faces. Like, if I'm holding two photos of the same person in different poses, I can't confidently say that they're a match. I have a hard time recognizing faces, too. I usually remember people more by their bodies and speaking voices.

- I was told in the eighth grade that I had an emotionless face. But, as an aspiring actress at the time, I became determined to make myself an expressive person.

Then again, there are many tendencies I've never expressed.

- I've never categorized things by color; in fact, my organization has no apparent rhyme or reason. I put things in an order that feel right.

- I find it easy to express my opinions verbally. It's only difficult to speak about my emotions, but when I do, I either find it refreshing or come to regret it deeply.

- I'm capable of keeping eye contact without feeling uncomfortable.

Please note that I probably expressed some myths or misconceptions about Asperger's and don't become offended. Please correct me instead. :P



AutisticBelle
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19 Sep 2012, 9:51 pm

Hello! And I just want to say its awesome how organized you are in listing your tendencies and such. I'm sure you'll have fun here.



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19 Sep 2012, 10:10 pm

Hi, Welcome to Wrong Planet! :jocolor: :bball:

Whether you are Spectrum or Spectrum-lite or a 'bridge person' (some traits but not others), I bet there are things you can both learn here and also contribute.

I think it's good you take part in theater. I've learned social skills from political activism, and also from jobs in sales and retail. I find it interesting meeting one customer after another and experimenting and developing my skills at casual conversation. I think many average people find this boring or repetitive, I don't although it does take a fair amount of energy.

I'd like to give you two bits of advice I wish someone had given me when younger.

To some extent, skip the followship skills and jump straight to skills of low-key leadership, which are more satisfying and more straightforward to boot. I mean, be open to organizing small group activities, and just ask people if they'd like to do something and if they say yes or no either one is fine.

And, since you like science anyway, considering going to medical school, getting an MD, becoming a doctor, the real deal. For example . . .

Quote:
New York Times, Denise Grady, Sept. 3, 2009.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/04/healt ... .html?_r=3

" . . . In children without chronic health problems, it is a warning sign if they seem to recover from the flu but then relapse with a high fever, Dr. Frieden said. The relapse may be bacterial pneumonia, which must be treated with antibiotics. . . "



So, if I was a doctor, I might say to a parent, "Take this medication [Tamiflu] and please finish it all. And this is important, if _______ relapses with a high fever, give me a call right away because that might be pneumonia." And I would not easily get bored saying this to patients. And even if I did, I would realize it's fresh to every patient I say it to.



Trempton
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19 Sep 2012, 10:10 pm

AutisticBelle wrote:
Hello! And I just want to say its awesome how organized you are in listing your tendencies and such. I'm sure you'll have fun here.


Thank you. I'm sure that this will be a fun place to explore. It's completely unlike any other type of forum that I've come across.



AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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19 Sep 2012, 10:19 pm

You realize of course there's all kinds of famous people theorized to be on the Spectrum.
http://www.asperger-syndrome.me.uk/people.htm

Now, it doesn't mean we're better than other people. Don't want to fall into that trap either. Just means we have our set of traits including strengths, and with a little bit of support and connection with others, and maybe a little bit of luck, who knows what we can accomplish.

(PS If someone is still living and they themselves have not said they're on the Spectrum, I prefer to say, creative person, marches to his or her own drummer, may be on the spectrum and may not and either way is perfectly okay)



Trempton
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19 Sep 2012, 10:21 pm

AardvarkGoodSwimmer wrote:
Hi, Welcome to Wrong Planet! :jocolor: :bball:

Whether you are Spectrum or Spectrum-lite or a 'bridge person' (some traits but not others), I bet there are things you can both learn here and also contribute.



Oh, it makes me happy to receive advice on my first post!

That article sure is interesting. To be honest, I don't know too much about the Swine flu, and wasn't really aware of its impacts a few years ago. At age thirteen I wasn't overly concerned with important things, I was too busy engaging in somewhat fruitless endeavors. ;P

But you're very right! Social interaction can be fun in the right circumstances.



Last edited by Trempton on 19 Sep 2012, 10:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Trempton
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19 Sep 2012, 10:29 pm

I've taken a popular test recommended on this website and scored...

Your Aspie score: 141 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 68 of 200
You are very likely an Aspie

That's much higher than I expected, and much higher than I feel that I am.

@AardvarkGoodSwimmer
I wonder if those people truly did have autism! I've always thought Michael Jackson was a bit offbeat, but Thomas Jefferson definitely threw me for a loop.



CockneyRebel
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19 Sep 2012, 10:40 pm

Welkome to WP

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cathylynn
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19 Sep 2012, 10:58 pm

i was a doc and lost the profession due to being bad at hospital politics. if i had a second chance, i'd do a less people-y science or medical specialty like radiology or pathology.



iggy64
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20 Sep 2012, 1:34 am

Hi, welcome :)

There's a lot of tests,many are listed http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt113459.html

I would say, if you want to try and get a diagnosis, because you believe you are severe enough to benefit from extra help, or just just plain want to know then I would go to a doctor, or whatever.

I think it is probably easier to get a diagnosis before you get older than 16, too. That's because they will still do a child assessment (as far as I'm aware) but the adult one is harder to convince to allow you to be tested.


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CrystalStars
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20 Sep 2012, 2:52 am

Welcome to the community.


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AardvarkGoodSwimmer
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20 Sep 2012, 2:46 pm

Trempton wrote:
. . . Thomas Jefferson definitely threw me for a loop.

As an older student at a local university, I took Early Colonial History last Spring. Our professor said, in her words, some thinking that Thomas Jefferson had high-functioning autism like Asperger's. It is rather amazing! :D

Now, personally, I prefer the political slogan, "We are all middle functioning," for we all have areas of strength and we all have our areas of skill deficits. And I like the approach of playing to strength and being matter-of-fact about deficits, as well as experimenting with trying things in new different ways.

I think the actress Daryl Hannah said she had Asperger's. (will try and find a link)
"Daryl Hannah Blacklisted by Hollywood due to Asperger's"
http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt119418.html
(Wish it was a more optimistic title, but . . but she found ways around it and that's the important thing. And even with often putting her personal life first)
http://www.boston.com/ae/celebrity/arti ... hollywood/