Could I be a moderate-functioning autistic?

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raisedbyignorance
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12 May 2009, 12:05 am

What exactly would I have to have or what kind of person would I have to be to qualify for that? I'm sometimes question if I am below functioning in comparison to other aspies I know.

But for now I would like to know...there's a moderate-functioning and a severe-functioning autism right? The severe functioning would mean I am a complete autistic. But what about the middle ground? What would put me in between being completely autistic or just having AS?

Yeah I should probably lists all the things that would make me qualify but I'm too tired. I'll check back on this in the morning.



elderwanda
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12 May 2009, 12:52 am

I'm certainly no expert, but I'm thinking that there are two things at play here. First, autism is a spectrum. Second, deciding where you are on the spectrum is subjective.

I'll give an analogy. If everything in my house is yellow and green, and someone brings me an orange flower, that flower will be the reddest thing in the house. If everything in my house is red, and someone brings me that same flower, then the flower is the yellowest thing in my house. In the first case, I might even think of the flower as being red, against the backdrop of everything else. In the second case, I might think of it as yellow, because it's so much yellower than anything else. I hope that's not confusing.

So, if anyone was to tell you where they think you are on the spectrum (yellow-orange, yellow, yellow-green?) that opinion would be colored (no pun intended) by their own experience of autism.

Does that make sense?



Danielismyname
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12 May 2009, 2:42 am

See the bottom of this page.

It has the symptoms and prognosis of severe, moderate, mild and subclinical. Subclinical is what AS is today, wereas the others are described as Kanner's today and in the past.



Marcia
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12 May 2009, 4:23 am

elderwanda wrote:
I'm certainly no expert, but I'm thinking that there are two things at play here. First, autism is a spectrum. Second, deciding where you are on the spectrum is subjective.

I'll give an analogy. If everything in my house is yellow and green, and someone brings me an orange flower, that flower will be the reddest thing in the house. If everything in my house is red, and someone brings me that same flower, then the flower is the yellowest thing in my house. In the first case, I might even think of the flower as being red, against the backdrop of everything else. In the second case, I might think of it as yellow, because it's so much yellower than anything else. I hope that's not confusing.

So, if anyone was to tell you where they think you are on the spectrum (yellow-orange, yellow, yellow-green?) that opinion would be colored (no pun intended) by their own experience of autism.

Does that make sense?


This makes perfect sense! What a wonderful analogy, and one that can be applied to so many areas of life.

Many thanks! :D



KingdomOfRats
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12 May 2009, 5:54 am

raisedbyignorance wrote:
What exactly would I have to have or what kind of person would I have to be to qualify for that? I'm sometimes question if I am below functioning in comparison to other aspies I know.

But for now I would like to know...there's a moderate-functioning and a severe-functioning autism right? The severe functioning would mean I am a complete autistic. But what about the middle ground? What would put me in between being completely autistic or just having AS?

Yeah I should probably lists all the things that would make me qualify but I'm too tired. I'll check back on this in the morning.

the severity [profound,severe,moderate,mild...as well as a spectrum amongst those] is different to functioning.
this is own understanding of MF,and there is no official understanding of it but the term does get recognised mostly by the autistic community-
a 'MFA' [Medium or Middle functioning Autistic] may be living in their own house/place/whatever,but need a lot of support to do that,and will likely be on middle-high level disability benefits because of their higher support needs.
They may be living in residential care but need not much support, if at all with personal care/basic skills.
they have better chances than LFs at having a job,and may have managed to get through schooling in mainstream-with support.
They may have communication difficulties.
They may score quite low on IQ tests [due to communication and learning difficulties].
As adults,they commonly are found in Autistic day centres,with LFs,whereas support/social groups are where HFs are better adapted for.
--There is lots of cross over for HFs into MF though,some aspies and HFAuties seem no different to MFA.

As for severities [which in ASDs refers to how strong the ASD traits are,and how many traits the person has],they dont just stick to one level,they vary like a spectrum:
[Mild] Borderline-mild>>>>mild>>>>mild-moderate>>>>borderline moderate
[Moderate] Moderate>>>>Moderate-severe>>>>borderline severe
[Severe] Severe>>>>Severe-profound>>>>borderline profound
[Profound] Profound


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ryan93
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12 May 2009, 6:03 am

I have virtually every AS trait (194 out of 200 on that online test), but I'd consider myself to be high functioning, and I'd consider my condition to be not all that severe. All it really affects me in is my ability to small talk, and that shouldn't be a life impairing disability. But it is :lol:



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12 May 2009, 10:49 am

I have moderate AS. This has been measured via testing (the Vineland II.) A psychologist can tell you where you stand.

In my experience, there is little difference between AS and HFA in the way we present ourselves. AS is a type of HFA. To me, they are equal on the spectrum. Others may disagree.

At any rate, my AS is moderate within the range of what it is to be AS autistic. I get lost constantly, can't drive, can't work, etc. but I can live independently.


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raisedbyignorance
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12 May 2009, 5:05 pm

I know I am capable of driving and living independently (alot moreso than my parents even realize). I've driven to far places they aren't even aware of. They still insist that I cant drive to my alma matter which (1.5 hrs away) to visit a friend up there by myself. I plan to prove them wrong real soon though...maybe later this week.

Sometimes I will get lost or my mind decides to turn itself off whenever I am in a complex maze and I will end up somewhere without even realizing it. I can usually find my way around a big city where I can depend on familiar streets and icons to find my way back but NOT in a large suburb where every damn house looks alike!! !

My biggest weaknesses are in concentration. It's mentally draining for me to do something small as replying to this thread. I had a mental breakdown a couple of hrs ago when trying to reply to this.

I'm convinced that I maybe moderate functioning because I depend so much on step by step instructions. People tell me to do things like my own laundry without telling me how to do it. It took me years to understand how exactly you do it because the different options are the laundry machine were so f**king confusing to me (warm/warm, warm/cold, cold/cold, WTF?! :lol: ). My family didn't teach me this stuff. I had to learn it for myself. Same goes for pretty much everything else in my life. They expect me to be on schedule without even bothering to give me a schedule. That's how it feels.

Plus I have a hard time even writing things down to express myself. My ability to write amazing stories and dialogue will forever be in my head ... or whenever I am talking to myself. Techincally about 80% I am talking to myself I am actually quoting dialogue of scenes in my head (all characters).

And to top it all off, people. I can't deal with people anymore. I can't settle down in a crowded place full of extroverted people without going crazy. The slightest hello scares the s**t outta me. I can't deal with it. Never could.

I also feel I don't abide by many of the positives Aspie traits. I'm not a genius. I'm not an artist. Plus I don't talk on and on about my obsessions because talking to someone just unnerves me. It really does.

Too much stuff to question about me. I guess you would have to be around me in order to really get it.



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12 May 2009, 7:21 pm

i was also debating what functioning level fit me for a while, then had doctors tell me i was moderate for many reasons, i cant be left alone long, i cant feed my own self only peanut butter from the jar(can make cereal and make microwave meals but hate them now lol), i still drink from a sippy cup so i dont spill things, if nobody directs or redirects me to do anything ill jsut lay under my weighted blanket rocking all day chewing holes in my sheets, i need somebody to do my hair. I need hand over hand instructions like you do as well and a strict schedule to live by, basically my self help skills are very low. My verbal language is horrible, soemtimes its great i can even have a conversation with you, but most of the times its not there, its just words here and there mainly sign or just noises. My nonverbal lanugage well idk i will go from giggling to whining, to rocking violently, to flapping excessively, so i dont give much go feed back, people have to guess what im feeling or wanting or thinking most of the time, and i misinterpret body language, facial expression, everything. My emotional iq is very low. I dont have any friends, i never socialize unless forced to, or i'll socialize on my terms basically like a 2 yr old would socialize. I love to climb, chew, and break stuff so sometimes its always good to have somebody around me. I'm also very huge on self injurious behaviors my dang forehead looks like a unicorn haha got this huge bump in the mid of my head haha from headbanging so severe, my back of my head looks deformed, and now been banging my back head for some odd reason. anyways BUT I can drive just not far distances, I have a boyfriend who is another main caregiver, I'm going to a community college been there for 6 years lol, but had to redo a lot of even "special" classes over, and since I can give eye contact 50% of the time and am able to have a conversation sometimes, there have times i can make real jokes even which makes me so proud hehe and do sarcasm hehe, i wouldnt be anywhere near severely autistic, but def have high functioning moments and traits. Half of the time I fall between moderate and low and the other half i fall between moderate and high. Like theres people that think im moderate-low functioning no matter what, and theres people who think im very high functioning just from meeting me for an hour or two, then theres people who've spent entire weekends with me who've seen me having a conversation, giving eye contact, actually sitting with people seeming interested(even though im not hehe shh dont tell anybody lol) to just rocking making noises headshaking no eye contact, wandering around know i'm autistic, neither high functioning nor low functioning. So in other words I'm basically moderately affected.

Now just like everybody else said, it depends on so much, like Callista siad in another post, some people consider high functioning living inpendantly, some consider low functioning only nonverbal and in diapers. Its really hard to explain. Anyways hope i helped alittle! i hope i didnt confuse u because somehow i confused me lol


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12 May 2009, 8:29 pm

raisedbyignorance wrote:
I know I am capable of driving and living independently (alot moreso than my parents even realize). I've driven to far places they aren't even aware of. They still insist that I cant drive to my alma matter which (1.5 hrs away) to visit a friend up there by myself. I plan to prove them wrong real soon though...maybe later this week.

Well I certainly can't do those two things. I think I'm probably moderately functioning AS though.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
Sometimes I will get lost or my mind decides to turn itself off whenever I am in a complex maze and I will end up somewhere without even realizing it. I can usually find my way around a big city where I can depend on familiar streets and icons to find my way back but NOT in a large suburb where every damn house looks alike!! !

I usually just get panic attacks.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
My biggest weaknesses are in concentration. It's mentally draining for me to do something small as replying to this thread. I had a mental breakdown a couple of hrs ago when trying to reply to this.

I get that too. I need to sometimes rock myself in order to read a long post.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
I'm convinced that I maybe moderate functioning because I depend so much on step by step instructions. People tell me to do things like my own laundry without telling me how to do it. It took me years to understand how exactly you do it because the different options are the laundry machine were so f**king confusing to me (warm/warm, warm/cold, cold/cold, WTF?! :lol: ). My family didn't teach me this stuff. I had to learn it for myself. Same goes for pretty much everything else in my life. They expect me to be on schedule without even bothering to give me a schedule. That's how it feels.

That seems quite normal for AS. I don't cook because I need step by step instructions and supermarkets tend to freak me out. My mum doesn't understand that it will take a lot to buy ingredients and follow the directions from a cook book.
I got shown to use the washing machine when I was quite young, and I've had it on the same setting for ten years.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
Plus I have a hard time even writing things down to express myself. My ability to write amazing stories and dialogue will forever be in my head ... or whenever I am talking to myself. Techincally about 80% I am talking to myself I am actually quoting dialogue of scenes in my head (all characters).

Oh me too. I tried to write my stories from my head down on paper, but it just doesn't work.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
And to top it all off, people. I can't deal with people anymore. I can't settle down in a crowded place full of extroverted people without going crazy. The slightest hello scares the s**t outta me. I can't deal with it. Never could.

I hate crowded places though someone saying hello to me doesn't freak me out too much.
It sounds like you have a bit of social anxiety. NT's can suffer from that too.

raisedbyignorance wrote:
I also feel I don't abide by many of the positives Aspie traits. I'm not a genius. I'm not an artist. Plus I don't talk on and on about my obsessions because talking to someone just unnerves me. It really does.

I'm no genius. I have an average IQ. I do consider myself an artist, but not a great one.
I don't tend to share my obsessions.

To me you don't seem to be moderate autistic. I seem to have it worse off than you. I don't work, can't live independently, can't drive and I can't even manage to go into town to buy my dog a collar.


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