Officially diagnosed at 22. Now what to do?

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Obstinate
Snowy Owl
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25 Apr 2014, 6:53 pm

Hi, I'm a 22 year old just diagnosed with AS. Yay right?

Wrong. Apparently in California every autism resource requires the Regional Center's approval. It sucks since I've suspected AS since she 16 (and even posted here) yet didn't find out about the RC until after my 18th birthday, and either way my parents wouldn't have supported a diagnosis as a child anyway.

So I'm thinking we So Cal Aspies should compile our own list of resources open to young adults/adults that don't require RC intake. How about it? Maybe separate costly programs fromreasonably priced? And how about employment assistance? I'm currently employed but worry about what may happen if I weren't.

Thanks for the assistance. There's gotta be something in the most populous region in the U.S.!



Obstinate
Snowy Owl
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30 Apr 2014, 5:22 pm

...anybody? :oops:



Ronbrgundy
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01 May 2014, 11:07 am

Hi I am NT but come on this site because my friend has Aspergers. I have browsed these forums quite a bit and have seen that many people qualify for disability support payments. In the case of my friend his condition is fairly severe. He cannot learn to a new card game that requires you to take a card and put one back for an example so working is very difficult and not realistic (not completely impossible though - he has had some jobs).

Anyway I suspect you could obtain unemployment and it would be nice to know how the state of CA handles autism just in case. Obviously some people with autism are high functioning and will not need disability. That probably doesn't answer your question but I'm throwing it out there because I was surprised at first that it can qualify. It sounds like you are asking what Career center resources are available to help someone with autism get into the workforce.



Sweetleaf
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01 May 2014, 11:31 am

And you would be disapproved by the Regional Center because?

If you have a diagnoses and they are who you have to go through to access resources, I don't really understand why they would turn you down.


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MrGrumpy
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01 May 2014, 12:05 pm

"So I'm thinking we So Cal Aspies should compile our own list of resources open to young adults/adults that don't require RC intake. How about it? Maybe separate costly programs fromreasonably priced? And how about employment assistance? I'm currently employed but worry about what may happen if I weren't"

I am in England, so I am not familiar with the bureaucracies of the United States. But for people with high-functioning ASD, self-help is highly likely to be more effective than State help. The alternative is quite likely to be 'no help at all'.

People with ASD very often have a need for everything to be spelled out in 'Black&White'. The paradox is that ASD simply cannot be 'diagnosed' in B&W certainty. That's why it's called a Spectrum.



Obstinate
Snowy Owl
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01 May 2014, 1:10 pm

They all state that the disability has to begin before the 18th birthday (aka diagnosed). What, should I lie and say that it was? :lol:



MrGrumpy
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01 May 2014, 1:28 pm

Hi Obstinate (I just love the name Obstinate!).

When I self-diagnosed myself in my mid-50s, and went to the UK National Health Service for some help, I was told in no uncertain terms that ASD is a childhood condition, and that there was no possibility at all of diagnosing the condition at a later stage in life. At the time, most of the up-to-date information was coming from the USA. So I am very disappointed to learn that, 10 years later, your Regional Centre appears to have adopted the 10-year-old mantra of the UK's National Health Service.

But answer me this... In what way are you 'disabled' by your ASD, and in what way do you think your Regional Centre would be able to help you if you could persuade them of your eligibility?



Obstinate
Snowy Owl
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01 May 2014, 6:55 pm

Mostly disabled when it comes to taking care of myself, socially, and occupationally. I was hoping to get help with supported employment (which the Regional Center covers), whereas sheltered workshops are outside their jurisdiction, which I would also be fine with. I'm also diagnosed as bipolar for whatever reason, so I think I'd be able to receive a caregiver from the county if I wished to live on my own in a few years, but if they had therapy groups that would've been helpful to meet similar people and such :/.



MrGrumpy
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03 May 2014, 3:49 am

Hi again, Obstinate. It sounds to me as if the American systems of care are as complicated and incomprehensible as the UK systems.

The good news seems to be that you are currently managing to live your life without state support. You are in work, and I'm guessing that your parents are happy for you to depend on them for a little while longer.

Is your Regional Centre set up to help under-18s only? If you are unable to live alone successfully, especially if your difficulties are practical rather than emotional, then I don't see why your age should make any difference.

It is definitely a good idea to find some groups of like-minded people. Groups are a very useful way to discover how other people cope (or fail to cope) with ASD. My own experience of groups led me to the conclusion that, having coped on my own for more than 5 decades, there was little to be gained by trying to change anything.

Do you discuss these things openly with your parents, or is the matter a 'closed book' between you and them?



NicholasName
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03 May 2014, 4:37 pm

Obstinate wrote:
They all state that the disability has to begin before the 18th birthday (aka diagnosed). What, should I lie and say that it was? :lol:


http://www.dds.ca.gov/General/Eligibility.cfm
"To be eligible for services, a person must have a disability that begins before the person's 18th birthday, be expected to continue indefinitely and present a substantial disability as defined in Section 4512 of the California Welfare and Institutions Code. Eligibility is established through diagnosis and assessment performed by regional centers."

If that's the place you mean, you can definitely use the regional centers, and it wouldn't be a lie at all. Any form of autism begins before the 18th birthday by definition. It doesn't matter if you're diagnosed at 8 or 80. It's just putting a label on what has already occurred. Autistic behaviors don't retroactively become autistic after a diagnosis; they always were.

I've gotten services with a "begins before 18 (or 21)" requirement, and I was older than you when I was first diagnosed. Now, go get the help you need and deserve. :)


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