Asperger Syndrome
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Hi

My keyworker at the community mental health Centre has wrote for me to be assessed for aspergers, she said it can take up to a year untill the assessment takes place. I was just wondering what is involved in it, so I know what to expect. I think if I had a idea about what it will be like then I might not have such high anxiety about it. I had been told by quite a few people over time that I might be on the autism spectrum, and was scared to admit it untill recently, and it is only because I am really struggling that I decided to look it up myself to learn more about it, and I tick so many of the boxes for having it. I have always felt like I am different and don't ever fit in. And have been told all my childhood and teenage years that I am weird even now, I am 26 years old, I still get called weird, and I suppose it is stuck in my head now that I am. But if I do get a diagnosis, I feel at least then I know that there isn't anything wrong with me and the way I react to things and will know that it is just because my brain is wired differently to NTs. Sorry I have ended up writing alot here and probably will be boring anyone who actually reads it. I'm sorry. I should of maybe just left it at my question at the start.

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Hi Saddoglover,

I too am waiting for an assessment. From reading the literature on the NAS website, the assessments are individual but all include the questionnaires and talking to a psychologist or psychotherapist. They ask questions about growing up, and how you cope with social situations, and also observe how you handle yourself in certain situations.

They may ask that someone from your family comes along to share their perspective of your behaviour as a child. Sometimes, there are other assessments to get an idea of your IQ and find out if you show signs of comorbidities like Avoidance Personality, depression or ADHD.

As I understand it, there is nothing to be worried about, but most adults do feel nervous about the process as there is no saying what the exact outcome will be.

For me, passing the questionnaires (8/10 on Q10, 42/50 on Q50 and 171/200 on RDOS) was an absolute relief. I was the moody child, no friends, never fitting in, always saying the wrong thing, and described as 'mean'. As an adult, I have not been able to work at relationships or stay motivated in a job or career.

Reading several blogs on aspergers has helped me begin to understand and make peace with who I am. That in turn has helped my confidence immensely. It can be extremely difficult to cope when you have to constantly study and mimic others to be able to communicate efficiently (and still fail at it).

As I have gotten older, the cumulative effects of so many years of trying to fit in have taken a toll on me. Added to the stress of autoimmune disease - the fatigue, pain and brain fog, most especially - I am finding it extremely difficult to beat my depression. I can't wait for my assessment. I think it is a foregone conclusion, but that piece of paper will hopefully give me access to tools to help me get some direction.

Hope it helps to know that you are not alone and there is nothing to fear.

The resources below should help answer any questions you have, or point you in the right direction.

autism.org.uk

lifeonthespectrum.net/blog/...

ownshrink.com/autism/female...

rdos.net/eng/Aspie-quiz.php

Wishing you lots of luck!

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Thankyou very much for taking the time to read my post and your reply. Much appreciated, and it really does help.

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I am 26 years old female. In the UK

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My children have just gone through the assessment process. It will have been a bit different, but one thing is the same. They will ask you about what it was like for you growing up. It might be useful before hand to talk to family members about your childhood. Try to write up a timeline, like: what was I like as a baby; when did I hit my milestones, like walking and talking; what was I like at school; and so on. Try to get as much information as possible before you go in. This way, when they ask you questions, you won't be anxious because you don't have the answer. I found this advice helpful when they were questioning me about my children's lives. Because I had it written down, I didn't have to worry that I would forget something. I hope this helps. Good luck. x

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Thank you very much for your reply. I unfortunately can't do that, as I was adopted age 4,and suffered abuse from my adopted family so choose to not have contact, I have always struggled my whole life, with communication, reading social cues, controlling my emotions, just never feeling like I will ever fit it, I have always felt different, and got bullied bad my hole childhood, never got support I needed for anything from anyone, I had to go to speach therapist when I was young, I feel that my difficulties were just passed off as being related to upset from my start in life and not having a secure home, which as I say didn't improve with being adopted. I was always called 'wierd' and not normal by people my hole life, including my adopted parents who used to say why couldn't they of been given a 'normal' child, and was always told I reacted the way I did to things just to be awkward, wich wasn't and isn't true, also I often had meltdowns, and still sometimes do, and have issues with not being able to block out background noise and hard to cope with crowds and I spend any time when out with my earphones in and just try to focus on my music to get me through it. I find eye contact extremely difficult, it makes me feel so uncomfortable and I avoid it as much as I can wich in turn makes people think I'm being rude but I can't cope with it. I get obsessions with certain food and will only eat that untill I get fed up of it then go on to something else, I only like plain bland food and find some things I cannot eat because of the textures or strong taste, if I was to force myself eat it, like I was at times as a child I am then sick, growing up I only ate a very few things and was always called a fusy eater and my adopted mum used to just refuse to make me anytime as she said I was impossible to feed and I would have melt downs if when she did make anything it wasn't right or something was touching. I struggle making general talk, I find it draining trying to figure out what people mean. I wish people would just be direct and not always expect you to know that if they say one thing, they could actually want you to say or do something the complete opposite to what they just told you. I tend to take things litteraly alot of the time, and don't understand alot of jokes, I always wear sleeves, I don't like the feel of a jacket over the top of my sleeves of my shirt, so choose to get wet over the feeling I can't stand.... There is probably more I could say... But I will stop there, and I'm sorry if iv gone into it too much.

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No, don't be sorry. You came here for help. I am sorry that you have had such a rough time. I can understand why going over your childhood would be difficult. I might be best then just to write down what you know yourself and then leave the rest. Explain to the psychologist the difficulties you had in childhood and they will understand. I only mentioned doing this so as to avoid anxiety going into the appointment. Don't create anxiety for yourself where you don't need to. It does sound like you have autism, but I am not able to diagnose. Fortunately, diagnosis procedures have improved. There are many more adults being diagnosed because we now recognise the difficulties that high functioning autism can have on one's quality of life. In the past it was assumed that if you could function socially, you were okay. Now we realise that functioning socially is not the same thing as being able to cope socially. Good luck and I hope that your assessment process goes smoothly. Try not to worry too much. They are there to help. x

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I had a women who came to my house and just asked me questions and asked my mum bout my development as a child I was the same it was a psychiatrist who suggested I got assessed and I waited a few months for the women to get in contact with me

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I'm 30 years old, and I was 26 once. At the time, I had recently been in two significant relationships with British ladies involved in some way with the NAS, and I'd like to reply to you. I am currently living in the United States, and I am an American citizen. I have a European cultural tie, but I don't have a formal citizenship tie. First and foremost, I applaud you for your bravery. Second, one of these British ladies whose relationship to me was like an auntie had a daughter who had Asperger symptoms and told me that I would have to accept that I was autistic. I'm the furthest thing from some of the Asperger's stereotypes! Like, the polar opposite: truly a tortured genius. I've never been given an assessment and this bothers me because I've met other younger individuals (ages 17-49) who have told me or whose parents have told me that they have Asperger's Syndrome. I notice severe differences, things they have that I don't, even though I do notice the pattern. What thrills me from the American perspective is that you will actually be getting an assessment. We do not have a comprehensive national healthcare system here, and by legal action, I have gained the closest thing that we do have, which has its severe drawbacks. I had to wait for 14 months to get it, and there are financial consequences attached for doing that. I won. I definitely learned how to wait. It turns out that my coverage does not extend to mental health at all, though an organization associated with my ethnic group that serves members of all ethnic groups decided to award me free counseling services for life. I use them, though my appointment tomorrow is canceled due to the tropical storm about to hit! I am making a decision if I can actually realistically gain some form of specialist worker outside of them. Otherwise, I have to work with what they provide me. Still, I cannot see their psychiatrist, because he is actually just a private psychiatrist contractor and I cannot pay him. My services will pay a psychiatrist, but he has to be a public one, or she has to be registered with them. If you're unlucky enough to need the services of a psychiatrist, sometimes financially you do better with a public one. I'm pretty convinced from my experiences with such an approved organization that they will not be able to provide me the assessment, and I've telephoned a local Iraqi war veteran psychologist who referred me to a service I haven't called yet. I'm hoping to find one that takes my plan. Nobody including the 49-year-old's Asperger's therapist takes the program I now have, which is called Medicaid. This is a separate program from Medicare, and the acronyms get even more confusing. I really do not think I currently have access to a way to even get the assessment, not even if I waited two years. I have a very peculiar set of extremely outgoing and socially oriented traits coupled with some real Asperger traits. In my case, nobody took the Asperger's idea that I presented verbally seriously until I reached a psychiatrist underling who immediately and cheerfully identified it and agreed and was actually nice. Her supervising psychiatrist is apparently a gem, and although I saw them only a short time before I moved, I really liked their work and was OK with their diagnoses. Once I realized what I was going to have to do, I insisted that I be continuously identified as having AS, outside of their organization, so that the diagnosis with stick. Nobody and I said nobody has ever formally evaluated me for severity. I have actually been told that they thought they had the wrong patient because they saw AS on paper. Basically, I was able to make the diagnosis stick, probably because it had been previously recorded. This was essentially a subject to measure at best, or a case of, "Do you think that you have this diagnosis?" It's very clear to me that I'm going to have to see if the assessment myself, but in my case, the implication is that I will have to pay for it more than the limitations of being a Medicaid recipient can possibly allow. The money is strictly limited. There is no easy solution for this other than to stay put where you are and keep working with the system. I've known I think a grand total of three ladies associated with NAS claims: a former girlfriend and a separate mother-daughter set. The system is totally different than in Britain, and it sort of works here, sort of. But you have the NAS, and when that works correctly, that can get you some really good European-style healthcare. I have no inherent mental health coverage. And with something like Asperger's Syndrome, that was part of the point in going into the system to get it. You can get out of the system whatever you want if you only try with a good heart and use your logic. Use your words, carefully so. Adapt, don't react. I got coverage, and there was almost no hope left. Whatever you do, get the assessment. Stick with it because any autism issues can be measured down to the smallest nail in an office building. They can be identified, hammered down, pulled up, and hammered down again. You need a rating scale coupled with highly specific terms that would describe and qualify your rating. If you think that you have the syndrome or thatvtype of thing, and you do, then what you want to do is get a clear answer. You've already put in the request. They'll already be a record of it in the future. Records are our friends! You're speaking to someone denied Medicaid twice by virtue of the way you get this program. A single stray document of the smallest kind can destroy the entire process. Eventually, the system is capable of working for you. Don't think you're ever going to pull one over on it, and that may be an American expression but what I mean is that you won't win if you try to pull something, but what you can do is get a reading that you can use to be qualified for the special services you want. It will be worth the wait. Do it.

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aspergerswomen.wordpress.com I talk about the lead up to my diagnosis as an adult woman. I hope it helps. You need to scroll down to find where I talk about the diagnosis process

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Thankyou very much

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Hi saddoglover,

I had my first assessment 2 week ago at the hospital, I was so anxious, but the lady was nice. She asked me about my childhood, and my moods etc , also had to fill in quiet a few pages, and score like between 1/ 10 for the things I liked or didn't like etc. She must think I have aspergers as I have my final appointment for the diagnosis in January. Good luckxx

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