Undiagnosed Females or males - anyone relate? very rambly.

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Jiheisho
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Joined: 21 Jul 2020
Age: 57
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,507

01 May 2021, 10:22 pm

You may find this blog very helpful: https://musingsofanaspie.com/adult-diagnosis/

I was diagnosed last year at the age of 56. For me, there was a big difference between my suspecting I am autistic and a professional actually validating it. ASD shares many symptoms with other conditions like Borderline Personality Disorder and ADHD. It also clarified that what I suspected was not just my projection of something to explain away certain things. Also, ASD is a clinical diagnosis which means that your autism is having a significant impact on your life. An outside evaluation gave me certainty over my suspicions. Still, it has been a complex journey for me since the diagnosis, but when I start to doubt my condition, I have that validation.

But realizing you have autism, however that is done, has been important. It means getting to the starting line of "normal" is not my goal. I need to create or find the environment that allows me not only to function, but also thrive. I need to learn what it means to be autistic in a neurotypical world and find that middle ground where I can exist, both as autistic and in relation to a neurotypical culture.

BTW, I was diagnosed in the US and it took me one hour with a psychiatrist. I did some preliminary research like interviewing my mother and collecting school records from when I was young for signs of autism in childhood. My wife also came to the session to answer questions about my behavior. My insurance covered the diagnosis and I paid about $200.



autisticelders
Sea Gull
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Joined: 23 Feb 2020
Gender: Female
Posts: 229
Location: Alpena MI

02 May 2021, 5:56 am

glad to see you here! I tend to be wordy-rambly too.

I suspected I might be autistic at age 65 and was officially diagnosed at age 68, I will be 70 this year. Knowing my diagnosis might have been enough, without the official piece of paper, but it helped me to get diagnosis because of the neurological testing involved.

Testing revealed that I have very poor visual( 25th percentile) and very poor audio (35th percentile) processing. That alone helped me finally understand myself in a very concrete and helpful way. No wonder tv, videos, movies, musical concerts, lectures, podcasts, radio broadcasts and other visual/audio things (including real time interactions with other humans) were so confusing and distressing.

I am blessed to have a gift with words, super vocabulary and written expression developed by using the only tool that gave real information and understanding in my world.

Knowing about my autism at this late date has been so useful for healing past hurts and understanding all those painful "why" questions of the past.
Looking at those experiences with autism in mind is explanation for most all of them. Add comprehension that my own mother was autistic, and lights went off all around me, I could see so much that had been hidden in my understanding before. What a relief!

self diagnosis is just fine. There are so many struggles surrounding finding medical/ clinical/professionals with experience in adult autism, women in particular, and the expense is so great in many places, that the autistic community is very accepting of self diagnosis. Being autistic we know you/I/we (autistic) will seek out loads of information and ask a million questions before finally understanding and accepting or rejecting autism as a diagnosis for ourselves.

There are definitely pros and cons to self or professional diagnosis. Take your time and explore. Ask loads of questions, it is a lot to sort out, especially if you have been here (on this planet) for a long time... there will be more to sort out from the new perspective of knowing about autism. glad you are with us.



CrabbyHermit
Snowy Owl
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Joined: 24 Mar 2021
Gender: Female
Posts: 135

02 May 2021, 10:12 am

Jiheisho wrote:
You may find this blog very helpful: https://musingsofanaspie.com/adult-diagnosis/

I was diagnosed last year at the age of 56. For me, there was a big difference between my suspecting I am autistic and a professional actually validating it. ASD shares many symptoms with other conditions like Borderline Personality Disorder and ADHD. It also clarified that what I suspected was not just my projection of something to explain away certain things. Also, ASD is a clinical diagnosis which means that your autism is having a significant impact on your life. An outside evaluation gave me certainty over my suspicions. Still, it has been a complex journey for me since the diagnosis, but when I start to doubt my condition, I have that validation.

But realizing you have autism, however that is done, has been important. It means getting to the starting line of "normal" is not my goal. I need to create or find the environment that allows me not only to function, but also thrive. I need to learn what it means to be autistic in a neurotypical world and find that middle ground where I can exist, both as autistic and in relation to a neurotypical culture.

BTW, I was diagnosed in the US and it took me one hour with a psychiatrist. I did some preliminary research like interviewing my mother and collecting school records from when I was young for signs of autism in childhood. My wife also came to the session to answer questions about my behavior. My insurance covered the diagnosis and I paid about $200.


Thanks, I think I've read a bit of that blog before, I might have a bit of a re-read. I like the way its written.

Thanks for sharing your experience, its very useful to read people's various viewpoints.



CrabbyHermit
Snowy Owl
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Joined: 24 Mar 2021
Gender: Female
Posts: 135

02 May 2021, 10:34 am

autisticelders wrote:
glad to see you here! I tend to be wordy-rambly too.

I suspected I might be autistic at age 65 and was officially diagnosed at age 68, I will be 70 this year. Knowing my diagnosis might have been enough, without the official piece of paper, but it helped me to get diagnosis because of the neurological testing involved.

Testing revealed that I have very poor visual( 25th percentile) and very poor audio (35th percentile) processing. That alone helped me finally understand myself in a very concrete and helpful way. No wonder tv, videos, movies, musical concerts, lectures, podcasts, radio broadcasts and other visual/audio things (including real time interactions with other humans) were so confusing and distressing.

I am blessed to have a gift with words, super vocabulary and written expression developed by using the only tool that gave real information and understanding in my world.

Knowing about my autism at this late date has been so useful for healing past hurts and understanding all those painful "why" questions of the past.
Looking at those experiences with autism in mind is explanation for most all of them. Add comprehension that my own mother was autistic, and lights went off all around me, I could see so much that had been hidden in my understanding before. What a relief!

self diagnosis is just fine. There are so many struggles surrounding finding medical/ clinical/professionals with experience in adult autism, women in particular, and the expense is so great in many places, that the autistic community is very accepting of self diagnosis. Being autistic we know you/I/we (autistic) will seek out loads of information and ask a million questions before finally understanding and accepting or rejecting autism as a diagnosis for ourselves.

There are definitely pros and cons to self or professional diagnosis. Take your time and explore. Ask loads of questions, it is a lot to sort out, especially if you have been here (on this planet) for a long time... there will be more to sort out from the new perspective of knowing about autism. glad you are with us.


Thank you for the warm and accepting welcome, its exactly what I needed right now.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences I very much appreciate it. I'd like to write more but I'm finding it tricky to get my thoughts together in a way that makes sense just the moment.



Something Profound
Snowy Owl
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Joined: 23 Apr 2021
Age: 38
Gender: Male
Posts: 125
Location: New Mexico

03 May 2021, 6:08 pm

CrabbyHermit wrote:
Thank you, its always a relief when people understand.

Do you think you'll go for an official diagnosis?

Would you feel happier knowing for sure?

Or do you feel you know enough to accept yourself as different but its actually fine?


I am awaiting an official diagnosis (Likely for HF ASD, formerly known as Asperger's), but for me it is about a year out. That is a year's worth on uncertainty and self doubt I imagine I will go through. I go through days where I feel absolutely certain I am on the spectrum, and days where I doubt myself on it. I have quite a few qualifiers, but a lot of things that do not fit the profile of ASD. I certainly do not want to offend anyone by "pretending" to have ASD if I do not, but then, as I said, I have days where I am certain that it fits me to a T.

I think I would be happier knowing for sure. I feel like I would be more comfortable knowing I do have ASD because it will explain most things in my life that have never really fit anywhere else. If I do not have ASD then I will still be a bit of a misfit without knowing why. But does it really change anything about me either way? No. I am still who I am pre and post diagnosis assessment, so it will not do anything except help me make sense of the odd missing pieces in my life.

I am pretty comfortable with who I am right now, and do not feel like I am going to change either way. The biggest benefit for me is just knowing. A few peripheral benefits are included, but they are not as important. There will certainly be cons for those who know me in the way they see me, but I get to decide who knows and who doesn't, except in certain cases. So that worries me a lot less.