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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » High-functioning Autism/Asperger's Syndrome?

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Author Topic: High-functioning Autism/Asperger's Syndrome?
Hawkward
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Hi,
I hope I've put this in the right section. I'm 15 years old, female, and I love to write. One of the characters in one of my stories has Asperger's Syndrome. Naturally, I researched Asperger's Syndrome a lot before I started writing the story. But the more and more I researched and the more and more I began to understand the disorder, I was really shocked. I display a lot of the symptoms of Asperger's, or High-functioning Autism. I'm really confused and just need a bit of advice...
I have above average intelligence. I'm no where near gifted, but I'm smarter than the average girl.
I came across 'stimming' or stereotypy. I was astonished. Okay, this may sound weird but when I was a little girl I had this really strange... habit. Whenever I felt really excited or really upset, or if I became really immersed in some game, I would cross my eyes, stick out my tongue, and twist my hands. I did this a lot when I was small, so much that I often had pains in my wrists and hands. I still do this, but it is less frequent, and I am able to control it a lot more. I only ever really do it in private.
My mom told me that I never had any language problems or delayed speech when I was an infant.
I feel I may have sensory issues - I am oversensitive to sights and sounds. Light really hurts my eyes, it does not even have to be that bright. I have to sit in a darkened room sometimes to stop my frequent headaches/migraines. Loud noises cause me distress, for example sirens and loud music I don't like. However, I can be perfectly comfortable at a noisy concert if I like the music. Again, I always seem to have headaches.
I have a lot of sleep problems. I have a really bad habit of biting my lips, so much that they bleed and I chew them even when it causes me great pain. I am a very anxious person, however this may be due to past experiences.
I dislike change, but if the change is small, I AM ABLE TO COPE. Drastic changes upset me. I don't wake up or go to sleep at particular times as my biological clock is very messed up. I get fixated on my homework and schoolwork, it must be PERFECT or I get very upset. Also, incorrect spelling and/or grammar bothers me.
I don't have many interests. I write a lot and use the computer a lot. I enjoy specific genres of video games and listening to specific genres of music. I have a huge interest in science in general, but mainly in robots. I'm obsessed with robots.
Finally, socially, I am VERY awkward. I will rarely initiate a converstion or approach someone. As a little girl, I could never hold onto friends and I was often painfully lonely. I tried to be sociable but the more I failed, the more withdrawn I became. I think I may have freaked people out, come on too strong, or whatever... I was weird. Now, I do have a close circle of friends that I am very lucky to have. However, I still get lonely and find it hard to go out and socialise. I haven't been outside the house in nearly two weeks...
I know I should tell my parents my concerns but I feel I could just be worrying over nothing. I know I should probably see a doctor but I want to see what you people think. Thanks very much for reading all of this. Thanks for the replies in advance!

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"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them at least don't hurt them."
- The Dalai Lama

"The problem with closed-minded people is that their mouth is always open."
- Unknown

Posts: 15 | From: in the dark | Registered: Apr 2013  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Hey there, Hawkward.

Really, no one here is qualified -- and no one online would be, period -- to make guesses about something like if someone is or is not on the autistic spectrum.

Do you have a doctor you already see for other things who you'd be comfortable seeing to ask about this, since they are someone who would be qualified to get you started with this, either themselves, or by referring you to a healthcare provider who specifically works in this area?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Hawkward
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Hi Heather,
Thanks for the reply. Yes, I do. However, health care is very expensive where I live (hence resorting in me turning to the internet, haha)and money is tight at the moment. Do you think I'm worrying over nothing or is this something I need to bring up at home?

--------------------
"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them at least don't hurt them."
- The Dalai Lama

"The problem with closed-minded people is that their mouth is always open."
- Unknown

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nosalis
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Hey there,

I just want to let you know that you're not the only person out there who displays these kinds of behaviors. A lot of the general trends in behavior that you posted are also applicable to me. I haven't been diagnosed with any form of Autism/Asperger's Syndrome, but I do display similar behaviors.

If you have parents or relatives that you trust, I would suggest bringing it up with them. They may have some useful outside input, and even if they don't, they can help cope with any negative feelings you start having.

I'm also really awkward socially. I can talk to people, and do have some friends, but after a while I get sick of being around people. My advice is to just keep trying to be social around your own group of friends. It may feel like you're forcing yourself out there at first, but after awhile you will start to feel more sociable.

Hope this helps.

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Hawkward
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Hi nosalis,
That certainly helped, thank you. Have you done tests to see if you have an autism spectrum disorder? Like doctors tests... I really agree with the people thing. I told my mom that socialising 'drains me' and she told me that wasn't normal... I really get sick of people as well.
It may be of note that I am also very very clumsy. My legs are battered, constantly walking into things!

--------------------
"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them at least don't hurt them."
- The Dalai Lama

"The problem with closed-minded people is that their mouth is always open."
- Unknown

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nosalis
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I haven't had any sort of medical or psychological tests done to measure if I have an Autism spectrum condition (or, for that matter, my IQ). To me, it wouldn't matter if I was clinically diagnosed with Aspergers, because I'd still be the same person. I wouldn't view it as a problem, but a reflection of who and what I am.

I get "drained" from socializing as well. By itself it doesn't confirm anything, but taken along with other things it may point to Aspergers.

If you feel like being diagnosed would put you at ease, I would recommend you do so. But whether or not you are diagnosed, you'll still be who you are, and not just someone with Aspergers.

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Heather
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Per asking about seeking out heathcare to answer this for you, what nosalis said is very relevant here.

Asperger's isn't an illness to be treated, so really, that'd just be primarily about answering these questions you're asking.

The exception I'd make with that per a need is you always having headaches: that obviously is painful, and also can happen because of things that DO need treatment. That also likely could be treated, so you'd get to live life without nonstop hurty-head, which would obviously be a good thing. [Smile]

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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You also may want to just look into, and educate your parents about, introversion. You are describing being socially introverted, which is true for about half the people in the world, so that's hardly uncommon or "not normal."

And if you find out more about it, you may find ways to make being introverted (I'm pretty introverted myself) a lot more comfortable for you -- it can be tough, we live in a very extrovert-oriented world right now -- and easier to explain to other people when needed.

This piece, centered around a new, and excellent book about introverts, might be one place to start: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jennagoudreau/2012/01/30/quiet-revolution-of-the-50-percent-introverts-susan-cain/

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Hawkward
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Thanks very much for all your help, Heather and nosalis. In primary school we were given big surprise tests, and a score was given to us. I achieved average in mathematics and above average in English. (The best score was well above average). You're right, maybe being diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder would not improve my quality of life at all...
Heather, I have actually spoken to my doctor about the headaches. A while ago I had an MRI scan and everything turned out normal, thank goodness. I had been on the contraceptive pill for a while to regulate Mother Nature's monthly gift. My doctor took me off the pill and the headaches improved for a while, but recently they're awful again.
What you said about being an introvert is certainly true. My mother is an extrovert. So are my brothers. My dad is an intorvert but he is able to put on an act, he could charm the socks off you! Haha! I will check out the link. Thanks again!

--------------------
"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them at least don't hurt them."
- The Dalai Lama

"The problem with closed-minded people is that their mouth is always open."
- Unknown

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Hawkward
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*my dad is an introvert

--------------------
"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them at least don't hurt them."
- The Dalai Lama

"The problem with closed-minded people is that their mouth is always open."
- Unknown

Posts: 15 | From: in the dark | Registered: Apr 2013  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
crazyhorseperson
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I'm also an introvert, and I've shown a ton of the signs of Asperger's/high-functioning autism. I think unless you feel like it really impacts your daily life, you've made it this far, so why let it limit you/seek treatment?
If it bothers you in any way, of course it's a good idea to consult someone about it. I'm an introvert, I have freakishly sensitive hearing and am very sensitive to light (especially during migraines), I get tension headaches a lot, I have great muscle memory but I'm extremely clumsy (I know how to ride a bike but that doesn't stop me nearly running into things!)...the list goes on and on. --'

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