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11th
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24 Oct 2015, 4:10 pm

What are the pros and cons of diagnosis (of aspergers/autism) in your opinion?



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24 Oct 2015, 6:47 pm

11th wrote:
What are the pros and cons of diagnosis (of aspergers/autism) in your opinion?


Cons are possibly the money and the stigmas of bieng labeled autistic

Pros are supports, services and therapies that are wildly available to people your age. It gives an explanation as to why you think and act the way you do.


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24 Oct 2015, 6:58 pm

Pros: understanding the issues I've struggled with all my life.

Cons: an 'official' diagnosis means nothing, since most people just see it as a trendy fad anyway.



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24 Oct 2015, 7:13 pm

I think it depends on age and how you process information.
I had strong suspicions for over two years(Aspergers), but as I tend to rationalize, I decided for a formal diagnosis.
Had I trusted my intuition, I would have been correct also. I guess introspection and research can be as valid as a formal diagnosis.
I do have trouble with a third party diagnosis other than by a trained professional. If parent, teacher, friend, have a strong suspicion about a child's behavior, the child should have a professional evaluation. As a non professional, I have no right to impose my diagnosis upon others.
Diagnosis based on biographical facts and intuition I take lightly and with humor. They belong to indoctrination.
Cheers



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25 Oct 2015, 1:46 am

Excluding the standard benefits of a medical diagnosis (support/treatment):

If you view autism as your core identity:

Potential Pros:

. It describes/explains you
. You are able to fit in to autism groups relatively easily, provided it is an accurate diagnosis
. It satisfies the human desire to feel socially significant/unique (you are excited to tell people)

Potential Cons:

. You may semi-consciously exaggerate your symptoms to fit your label
. Backlash for being too eager, i.e. 'special snowflake' slur
. You may be treated as if you're less capable than you are by people that know of your diagnosis
. You may inflate the label to the point where it encompasses far more of you than it should

If you don't view autism as your core identity:

Potential Pros:

. It describes/explains some of your traits
. You're able to better determine your strengths/limitations

Potential Cons:

. You may feel as if your hope for a normal life has been crushed
. You may be treated as if you're less capable than you are by people that know of your diagnosis


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Ashariel
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25 Oct 2015, 10:24 am

Norny, those are good observations, and I don't deny there are people who seem to fit both groups.

However, I would add a third category, of people who don't necessarily see it as their 'core identity', nor are they seeking special snowflake status, but have a lifelong history of employment failure and social ostracism due to a genuinely disabling level of autistic symptoms – for which there is no help to be found, because the professionals who specialize in helping people with disabilities see Asperger's as a trendy fad diagnosis.

That is what I meant when I said there is no point in an 'official' diagnosis. Not because I give a crap about being accepted socially (I gave up on that decades ago) – but because I would genuinely like to turn my life around, be able to hold down a job, and live independently... But my oh-so-trendy Asperger's diagnosis gets me zero help with any of those issues. (Whereas if I were a parolee and drug addict with three crack babies, those resources would be available to me... And I am speaking of a close family member when I say that.)

Until Aspergers/ASD is viewed by health professionals and social services as a condition every bit as real and disabling as substance abuse, the diagnosis will ultimately not help us, in a world where we barely have the coping skills to survive.



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25 Oct 2015, 10:46 am

The people advocating "asperger's isn't a disability, it's just a difference, autistic people are just quirky and there's nothing wrong" really are not helping getting it taken seriously. It is a disability, and we do need support. For adults there isn't much and that needs to change, but I can't see it changing if people keep saying we don't need any and not to change us etc.

Cons: time consuming, stressful
Pros: even if you don't get diagnosed, you will find an awful lot out about yourself through the process. And you may be eligible for help, but it depends regionally how much there actually is.



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25 Oct 2015, 11:25 am

iliketrees wrote:
The people advocating "asperger's isn't a disability, it's just a difference, autistic people are just quirky and there's nothing wrong" really are not helping getting it taken seriously. It is a disability, and we do need support. For adults there isn't much and that needs to change, but I can't see it changing if people keep saying we don't need any and not to change us etc.

Cons: time consuming, stressful
Pros: even if you don't get diagnosed, you will find an awful lot out about yourself through the process. And you may be eligible for help, but it depends regionally how much there actually is.


PLUS f****n ONE

I will respond to the above asharial reply in the tomorrow


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25 Oct 2015, 11:28 am

Norny wrote:
Excluding the standard benefits of a medical diagnosis (support/treatment)...

Norny, I think what you wrote is quite interesting. I had some comments:

Under the heading, “If you view autism as your core identity”:

You mention (as a potential pro) that it “It satisfies the human desire to feel socially significant/unique (you are excited to tell people)”. I actually felt less unique after being diagnosed (i.e., after being diagnosed I had the realization that there are countless others that are more similar to me than I thought).

Under the other heading, “If you don’t view autism as your core identity”:

You mention (as a potential pro) that it “It describes/explains some of your traits”. I believe it does more than that. For me, it put ~ 50 years of my prior life’s experiences in a totally new perspective. Things in my past that previously didn’t make sense, now did. It was an incredible shock/revelation. In the 2 years after being diagnosed, I would regularly come up with memories from my past and think, “Aha! I now understand why this happened". I don’t believe this would have happened (at least for me) without being diagnosed.



Last edited by Rocket123 on 25 Oct 2015, 11:32 am, edited 4 times in total.

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25 Oct 2015, 11:29 am

For Aspies who are only affected mildly and are high-functioning, like me, there are more cons with having a diagnosis. Sometimes ignorance is bliss, so not knowing what I had might have made me socialize better. OK I may have fell behind academically if I never had a diagnosis for the teachers to be aware of, but at least I would have fitted in socially. But because my diagnosis was told to everybody in the class, they all thought of me as someone with AIDs or something, and only saw me by my label, instead of the normal child I really was underneath.


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Norny
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25 Oct 2015, 11:33 am

I can't speak for older generations as ASPARTOFME pointed out


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NowhereWoman
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25 Oct 2015, 11:38 am

For an adult who has learned coping mechanisms and is "functioning" enough to support him/herself I don't see a lot of material pros. For example, ABA and the like won't really benefit us. For people who are struggling much more, a pro could be governmental help, but I have seen that that's quite difficult to get unless you're SERIOUSLY non-functioning as far as self-support, in which case many such people have already been DXd and are already receiving services, so....

The single pro I see for a very high-functioning adult is being able to understand why s/he's always been "so weird," a paradigm shift where s/he will go easier on him/herself rather than constantly forcing him/herself to act in certain ways and self-expose to painful stimuli, etc., and also, if applicable, being able to relate experiences to a therapist in this context and therefore self-help better emotionally/psychologically.

I'm not sure about cons for an adult but I have a bit of a paranoia about insurance and the like changing for DXd adults (I can see that happening simply because autism services are such a huge chunk of cost nowadays).

Pros for a child would be services, help, understanding (hopefully) on the part of schools, and the child being more self-accepting rather than spending his/her entire childhood thinking "I'm weird, there's something wrong with me, I'm just messed up," which can be SEVERELY damaging and in some cases, life-long, even with therapy.

Cons for a child: I'm not very paranoid of a doctor just "handing out" an autism DX, the criteria really are pretty specific, so I don't see that as a drawback. OTOH, parents who want to get a child out of special ed later on and just have standard ed with supports may have a heck of a time, so that could be seen as a con. We're seeing that right now with our youngest son, and he never even was DXd with autism. He was recently DXd with ADHD by two different doctors (neurologist, psychiatrist) but his brother is OTS and was already in the school system as such, so when our youngest temporarily had a speech delay (caught up well before school) and displayed what has consistently been described as "some autistic-like behaviors," he was put into ASRD and now we CAN'T get him out and the school is refusing to put him into standard ed with supports, claiming they "just don't have any" - so now it's a big fight and we are put to the wall with either revoking our IEP in which case he will get NO services, or keeping him in ASRD where he really doesn't belong.



thewheel
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25 Oct 2015, 11:57 am

I was recently diagnosed as an adult. I sought it because I felt I need help, not for the sake of it.

For me, I think the diagnosis has helped me to make sense of my problems more thoroughly. However it has had the effect of making me feel even more isolated as before, as I can see the futility of interacting.

The worst thing for me though is the irrational reaction of normals. I really wouldn't tell anyone unless necessary, they are entirely incapable of empathy for us. Oh the irony...

Oh and if you want to get diagnosed as an adult because you are seeking help like I did, I wouldn't bother. "Professional" services are either inadequate or downright ignorant and more often than not, both.


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25 Oct 2015, 12:28 pm

Norny wrote:
iliketrees wrote:
The people advocating "asperger's isn't a disability, it's just a difference, autistic people are just quirky and there's nothing wrong" really are not helping getting it taken seriously. It is a disability, and we do need support. For adults there isn't much and that needs to change, but I can't see it changing if people keep saying we don't need any and not to change us etc.

Cons: time consuming, stressful
Pros: even if you don't get diagnosed, you will find an awful lot out about yourself through the process. And you may be eligible for help, but it depends regionally how much there actually is.


PLUS f****n ONE

I will respond to the above asharial reply in the tomorrow


Guys, if you want to make points against the Neurodiversity Movement or the idea of an autistic identity, please do it in another thread. If you are focusing on the pros & cons of diagnosis, carry on.



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25 Oct 2015, 12:29 pm

am doing that


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iliketrees
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25 Oct 2015, 12:34 pm

The first paragraph was a reply to the post above mine. Wasn't talking about neurodiversity.