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Upon Learning of Your Autism Spectrum Diagnosis...


Upon Learning of Your Autism Spectrum Diagnosis...  

10 members have voted

  1. 1. How old were you when you learned that you were on the Autism Spectrum? (formal diagnosis)

    • 6 or younger
      1
    • 7 - 12
      0
    • 13 - 18
      1
    • 19 - 25
      4
    • 26 - 30
      1
    • 30 - 40
      1
    • 40 - 50
      2
    • Over 50
      0
  2. 2. How did the knowledge affect you? (Choose all that apply)

    • For the first time all my questions about why I was different were answered.
      6
    • I felt empowered to function better around other people.
      2
    • I felt damaged and broken.
      2
    • I felt less human than before.
      1
    • Before the dx, I had hoped I could change, but then I lost hope.
      2
    • It didn't surprise me.
      4
    • I was surprised - the idea that I might be autistic had never occurred to me.
      3
    • It didn't interest me.
      2
    • It helped me understand how to improve my relationships.
      3
    • I lost hope of ever having a meaningful or successful relationship.
      2
    • I began to despise "neurotypicals".
      1
    • I retreated from the world and hid away.
      0
    • I sought support from a therapist.
      4
    • I sought support from an Autism support group.
      4
    • I sought support online (check this, of course - you're here, aren't you?)
      7
    • I felt stigmatized.
      0
    • I began to think of myself as 'disabled' for the first time.
      3
    • I did not think of myself as 'disabled' or 'damaged', simply 'different'.
      6
    • I began to plot my Domination of the World. Muahaha.
      2
  3. 3. When others knew I was on the AS spectrum, I got support from:

    • Spouse
      2
    • Children
      0
    • Family
      5
    • Friends
      3
    • Classmates
      1
    • Coworkers
      1
    • n/a
      1
  4. 4. When others knew I was on the AS spectrum, I had a bad reaction from:

    • Spouse
      1
    • Children
      0
    • Family
      5
    • Friends
      2
    • Classmates
      3
    • Coworkers
      1
    • n/a
      2
  5. 5. On balance, have you been made better or worse by knowing your dx?

    • Better
      8
    • Worse
      0
    • I can't tell yet.
      2


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Umm, OK, I'll go first.

I was diagnosed yesterday, so I would have preferred not to answer question three, as I have not yet notified anyone other than my husband-so no negative responses; however as the poll is set up it doesn't give you the option of leaving a question unanswered. Cerberus, do you want to change that? You might get more answers if there was a way to skip non-applicable questions, or to answer n/a.

Until I few months ago, when a handful of tests showed up here on CB, it had never entered my mind to question whether I had an ASD. I've known, been friends with, and even dated Aspies in the past, and while I've always had no trouble at all relating to my Aspie loved ones, I've never thought I might be somewhere on the spectrum myself. But then I learned more about it.

So yesterday I had an evaluation at the local Autism Society. I took the RAADS-R test, and had a two hour long interview with one of their therapists (she is a licensed therapist with an MA and special training in working with Autistic adults, women in particular, and her husband is on the spectrum). When she was done interviewing me and scored my RAADS-R, she said that to be on the spectrum you need a total score of 65 or higher. I scored 167. Average for autistic people who take that test is 132. So I have the relief of not having to feel as if I have an equivocal diagnosis, which I would've felt if I'd scored a 70 or something.

And, to go into more detail about the quiz above, I do feel as if all sorts of things about me that didn't make sense before make sense now. I can't wait for the follow-up appointment in two weeks, when she explains more of the particulars to me. I feel, in a way, as if I can stop trying to fit my round-peg self into the square-holed world, and I can stop being angry with myself when I fail. I also feel as if there may be tools available to me now to teach me how to function better in situations that have always been hard for me.

And I can't wait to see my tdoc again. I very hesitantly ran the idea of being tested for an ASD past him in May, and he was dismissive to the point of contempt, and told me that because I understand sarcasm I can't possibly be an Aspie or anything similar. This from the man who for years has complained about half a dozen traits I display that I now realize are classically Autism-spectrum.

I mean, on the one hand, it changes nothing. This diagnosis isn't like finding out I have bipolar was; I don't have to change a thing about my life if I don't want to-it isn't as if I have to take meds every day forever or anything. But on the other hand, it answers a lot of questions I've always had about what the hell is my problem, and it gives me new venues to explore to make my life easier.

So I call this a win.

And come on, people, take the quiz! It's a good quiz! You'll like it! Quizzes are fun!

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Nothing negative about my (late) diagnosis at all,

unless you include the sentiment "I wish I had known about this a good number of years earlier"

The poll won't let me vote unless I pick a "bad reaction" in section four, which I decline to do.

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The reaction from my family was "meh", pretty much. They don't care and don't care to think about it. Despite the fact that a lot of early child hood testing, of which I have seen/or have the records, points to autism. To think or care about it, they would have to acknowledge this. And admit that someone, somewhere, "missed the boat".

I don't care about that.

I now have problems with my autism/aspieness/pddnosishness [nobody really can decide] because my diagnosis was used against me. Now I'm scared to tell people. I'm scared to talk about it. I'm scared to explore stuff that are definitely because of the autism -and it is HFA or PDDNOS not aspergers, or whatever they are choosing to call it now, delay in speech among other things, not that I should care- not that anyone should care, really. Apparently there's this huge OMGBUTTHURT difference where we have to segregate and fight amongst eachother like factions of a religion though.

I'm hurt and confused and my autie self is sad and limping along and languishing because it has no support in these matters.

Every day I hide and it takes so much energy to hide.

Instead of saying "meh", I wish my family had said "OH, that makes so much sense"... because it really does.

...and on top of that the board just tried to eat my post.

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Guest Vapourware

Interesting poll!

I guess I always saw myself as being different from others, and I could never work out why. I thought it was something really wrong with me, but with the ASD dx, I realised it was just a matter of me being wired differently. That has helped a bit in how I view myself.

However, the dx also made me feel like I was irreparably broken, because no-one can fix the wiring in my head. I felt like I was told that nothing about me will change and that I will continue to feel out-of-sync with the rest of humanity. That hurt me the most because all I've wanted is to feel included with people, instead of constantly feeling like I'm an outcast.

It's been a year since my dx, and I'm still trying to come to terms with it. Sometimes I think it was a mistake and I actually don't belong to the spectrum, but sometimes I think it is right. It's one of the things I'd like to talk about with my therapist.

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Thank you, everyone, for the suggestions. I've made some slight tweaks to allow for more flexibility in answering and non-answering, so if you were having trouble responding or holding off responding because, like Emettman, the poll was forcing your hand, you may find it easier now.

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