Why are there more males than females on this site?

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MissConstrue
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23 May 2009, 11:05 pm

I'm just curious as aspergers is suppose to be more prevalent in males than females.

I can't help but notice in some posts that there are females like myself who were diagnosed later in life. I went through one psychiatrist after another without the mention of autism or aspergers.

So what are your thoughts about this?

Do you think that it may be the traits in most females are less noticable than in males or what?


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Dark_Red_Beloved
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23 May 2009, 11:25 pm

One thing I have found is that what is noticeable is largely dependent on what one expects to see--and many people do not expect to see spectrum females, let alone adult females on the spectrum.



MissConstrue
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23 May 2009, 11:44 pm

^That almost seems plausible since the only person that mentioned aspergers was a female therapist who had a daughter diagnosed with it ^^

If it wasn't for her, I don't know what would've happened. I'd still be a guinea pig prescribed a bunch of pills /:


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millie
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23 May 2009, 11:52 pm

Last year when i was seeking answers to questions about myself and ASD, I rang one local generic psychologist, and was told it was highly unlikely i had an ASD and most specifically AS, because it really only affected boys. This man was a psych but not an ASD psychologist. I told him he had obviously not bothered to keep himself abreast of AS and he told me i was a fool, basically.

I went on to receive a formal dx from an ASD specialist.
There is a good thread in the general discussion section of WP at present about women and whether or not we present with a slightly altered presentation than is classically assumed in males.



sinsboldly
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24 May 2009, 12:06 am

I like to remember that the internet is 'rarified air' you have to have a comptuer and you have to have a steady contact with the internet. There are people that don't have this, WP gets a lot of folks that log in in libraries and at school. I posted in a thread where the guy was in the unemployment office looking for work. So out of the people that post those who are male there are probably more that have the solitary hobbie of crusing the internet and posting on WP. The women are probably raising families which. I hear, leaves not much time for internet chat.


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MissConstrue
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24 May 2009, 12:21 am

millie wrote:
Last year when i was seeking answers to questions about myself and ASD, I rang one local generic psychologist, and was told it was highly unlikely i had an ASD and most specifically AS, because it really only affected boys. This man was a psych but not an ASD psychologist. I told him he had obviously not bothered to keep himself abreast of AS and he told me i was a fool, basically.

I went on to receive a formal dx from an ASD specialist.
There is a good thread in the general discussion section of WP at present about women and whether or not we present with a slightly altered presentation than is classically assumed in males.


Well I'll be damned....how awful. I think over here, we're still way behind in aspergers and autism awareness.

Nevertheless, at least you were smart enough to know better. And thanks for the info, I'll have to check that thread out.


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keerawa
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24 May 2009, 1:48 am

I self-diagnosed when I was 30. I think that there are two factors:
1) Since AS is supposed to present in boys, psychs won't even consider it for a girl.
2) Since girls are culturally required to put tremendous amounts of effort into empathy and social skills, we're more likely to develop our own coping skills without clinical intervention.



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24 May 2009, 2:23 am

The OP contained a Good question, the thing is that the world of autism does seem to be very male dominated but why is it that way ?

I think that it will be close to impossible to make a good estimate of things like the percentage of the population who have AS or another ASD. Several things will make it harder.

1. Many higher functioning people may have slipped through the net, they are out there doing their own thing.

2. Girls with AS can be harder to spot than boys with AS, in my family I have a girl suspected by the medical profession to have AS. I have discovered that the special interests of many AS girls are oftein dismissed as typical girl things. The teen aged girl who has a very strong interest in marine life may be viewed as a "typical girl" who loves animals like flipper while a teen aged boy who has a very strong interest in X-ray diffraction equipment is considered as someone with an interest which the typical boy of his age does not have.

Imagine for a moment, the girl drawing pictures and diagrams of flowers or "flipper" vs the boy drawing diagrams of X-ray powder diffraction cameras or considering the maths of a time resolved neutron diffraction experiment. Which to the typical passer by will look more like AS ?

I suspect that the idea that little Johnny might try to following in the foot steps of Wilhelm Röntgen, the Curies or the Braggs will make his parents sit up and pay attention while little Jemma wanting to know about the inner workings of flowers and animals does not worry them so much.


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24 May 2009, 8:56 am

Woodpecker wrote:
Girls with AS can be harder to spot than boys with AS, in my family I have a girl suspected by the medical profession to have AS. I have discovered that the special interests of many AS girls are oftein dismissed as typical girl things. The teen aged girl who has a very strong interest in marine life may be viewed as a "typical girl" who loves animals like flipper while a teen aged boy who has a very strong interest in X-ray diffraction equipment is considered as someone with an interest which the typical boy of his age does not have.

Imagine for a moment, the girl drawing pictures and diagrams of flowers or "flipper" vs the boy drawing diagrams of X-ray powder diffraction cameras or considering the maths of a time resolved neutron diffraction experiment. Which to the typical passer by will look more like AS ?

I suspect that the idea that little Johnny might try to following in the foot steps of Wilhelm Röntgen, the Curies or the Braggs will make his parents sit up and pay attention while little Jemma wanting to know about the inner workings of flowers and animals does not worry them so much.


That's certainly part of it. What I can't figure out though, are those instances where a boy and a girl can exhibit the same behaviors--but a boy get diagnosed, while a girl is told not to be a drama queen. At least, that's what many students and some teachers said to me when I had meltdowns...

:scratch:



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24 May 2009, 10:22 am

sinsboldly wrote:
I like to remember that the internet is 'rarified air' you have to have a comptuer and you have to have a steady contact with the internet. There are people that don't have this, WP gets a lot of folks that log in in libraries and at school. I posted in a thread where the guy was in the unemployment office looking for work. So out of the people that post those who are male there are probably more that have the solitary hobbie of crusing the internet and posting on WP. The women are probably raising families which. I hear, leaves not much time for internet chat.


Came here from the home page new topics list.

Guess why males aren't occupied raising children, when they always were in the past.

It ain't because we don't want to be involved in our children's lives.

Impossible to believe, but some people actually call that "gender equality."


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24 May 2009, 10:29 am

Am do not think there are as less female users as usually said on here.
Female users with any form of autism seem to commonly avoid making gender obvious usernames like what find on other forums where it's very common to find girls using that word in their name-or a similar word,and also act very stereotypically female to make it obvious.

Females are a lot more hidden,but thats because anyone not making gender obvious is usually classed automatically to be male,am always called 'he' on WP and the mixed disability forums am use because couldn't care less about making gender a point.

Am don't think the 'Aspie females are less obvious' stereotype exists as a default,it would look more obvious if were basing it on the milder higher functioning end of AS,but the severe end is obvious,am have lived around quite a few female and male aspies classed as such,and it's always the females who were typically autie like,only one male was close-two of them were also classed as having more severe challenging behavior than every other client of the boroughs LD residential services.
Most Auties and Aspies in LD care can't use a computer,and don't get the choice to learn one,which given the chance could eventually lead them to places like WP,it's definitely one part of the spectrum not well represented on here.


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sinsboldly
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24 May 2009, 11:55 am

CanyonWind wrote:
sinsboldly wrote:
I like to remember that the internet is 'rarified air' you have to have a comptuer and you have to have a steady contact with the internet. There are people that don't have this, WP gets a lot of folks that log in in libraries and at school. I posted in a thread where the guy was in the unemployment office looking for work. So out of the people that post those who are male there are probably more that have the solitary hobbie of crusing the internet and posting on WP. The women are probably raising families which. I hear, leaves not much time for internet chat.


Came here from the home page new topics list.

Guess why males aren't occupied raising children, when they always were in the past.

It ain't because we don't want to be involved in our children's lives.

Impossible to believe, but some people actually call that "gender equality."


December 26, 1969 two men in suits came to my bed side in the birthing side of the hospital and then a few minutes later a woman similarly dressed came in the room with a little receiving blanket bundle. I was told to sign the papers and I did ask to see my daughter before they took her away. The woman turned down the blanket and there was a squinched up little red face. They did allow me to touch her forehead before they took her away. I was discharged from the hospital to the bus stop and I sorta wondered around for the next few years in a daze.


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CanyonWind
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24 May 2009, 1:59 pm

I'm not denying or trivializing what you've suffered.


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Did you say that wasn't proper? Did you march out on the track?
You were quiet, just like mice. And now you say that we're not nice.
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24 May 2009, 2:27 pm

KingdomOfRats wrote:
Am do not think there are as less female users as usually said on here.
Female users with any form of autism seem to commonly avoid making gender obvious usernames like what find on other forums where it's very common to find girls using that word in their name-or a similar word,and also act very stereotypically female to make it obvious.

Females are a lot more hidden,but thats because anyone not making gender obvious is usually classed automatically to be male,am always called 'he' on WP and the mixed disability forums am use because couldn't care less about making gender a point.


Good point, when I first saw a post by you I thought that you were male because you mentioned a male thing (kingdom).

KingdomOfRats wrote:
Am don't think the 'Aspie females are less obvious' stereotype exists as a default,it would look more obvious if were basing it on the milder higher functioning end of AS,but the severe end is obvious,am have lived around quite a few female and male aspies classed as such,and it's always the females who were typically autie like,only one male was close-two of them were also classed as having more severe challenging behavior than every other client of the boroughs LD residential services.
Most Auties and Aspies in LD care can't use a computer,and don't get the choice to learn one,which given the chance could eventually lead them to places like WP,it's definitely one part of the spectrum not well represented on here.


Two good points, Tony Attwood's book "The complete guide to AS" is one book in which the idea that AS in girls is harder to spot than it is in boys. I have a girl with an ASD in my family and she is a world away from me. With hindsight when I look back at my youth I was clearly showing some of the classic signs of AS, while it has taken my wife years to work out that her daughter has AS. I suspect that the higher functioning AS girls might be better at acting NT than boys.

I think that you are likely to be right that the aspies and auties we see here are a selected bunch rather than a random sample of people with ASDs. Those people who are in long term care are less likely to be on line, while some of the higher functioning ones are unaware that they have AS and are busy going about their things. Merle pointed out that some of the lost female aspies may well be occupied with their familes. So one way and another we may well be missing a large number of people from the AS community here.


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sinsboldly
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24 May 2009, 2:34 pm

CanyonWind wrote:
I'm not denying or trivializing what you've suffered.


I didn't think that, CW. I am not denying or trivializing what you've suffered, either.


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Hector
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24 May 2009, 2:43 pm

A few things:

* People are more inclined to be here if they are (or they're sure they are) on the autism spectrum.
* Autism occurs more often in men than women, though the reason for this I don't think is known.
* People over a certain age with AS were generally diagnosed in adulthood. Be aware that research is very much ongoing and I don't think it's at all well-understood. Personally, I was diagnosed as a child though in my case it wasn't AS, it was "autistic features" because if I remember correctly AS did not yet exist in the formal literature. One time I sat in a circle of chairs for my then-support group and asked the group if anyone who was diagnosed as a child could put up their hands, and none did - and notably, all of them were at least my age and generally a bit older.
* On several levels more attention is paid to boys than girls, so being on the spectrum may be more likely to be obvious growing up.
* Autism may be seen as a "male" condition so many may find it hard to imagine women with AS.

The few women I've met with AS each had quirks that were analogous to some of those of the men I've known with AS.