I'l looking to get myself tested on the ASD spectrum to see where I might fit there.
Is there a way that I can pay privately to accelerate the process and if so, roughly how much does that cost?
I'm not even sure that I need a formal diagnosis, but I'd like to have some discussion with someone who is an expert in diagnosing autistic traits in adults to discuss whether I'm on the right track.
The background here, to cut a long story short, is that I have several friends and family who have been telling me for years that I am "on the spectrum", and at least a couple of them are psychotherapists themselves. In particular they have suggested that I might have "high functioning Asperger".
I'm also starting to get concerned that my daughter may be similar but my ex partner won't hear of it. I'm thinking that if I get some kind of diagnosis myself, it might help to get the concerns about my daughter taken more seriously.
I have also taken one of those online tests and came out "You might be autistic so you might want to investigate further" or words to that effect, and some of it would certainly make sense - I certainly always felt like it was hard for me to fit in and so on, and that social interactions were a learned logical skill or effort for me rather than something natural.
It would also be very interesting to find out whether my friends and family are right about this or not, but I've made it to almost 50 with a good job so I don't necessarily want to call on limited NHS resources to find out.
I'd also like to hear the answer to your question, being in a similar position.
Hi Javertand Gradvlax
I’m in similar situation and also I’m a bit worried about my daughter.
I found charity Organization called Action for Asperger which charges £200 for first appointment and then if they think it is recommended £500 for another appointment after which you would get the diagnosis. Waiting time in my case 3 months. I’m still waiting for my first appointment so can’t say much but if you live somewhere near Corby (in my case 3hours drive) you may have a go.
They reply to emails very quickly.
A free test you can do to find out if it's worth pursuing is asking your ex partner and the other people in your life "what's weird and different about me?". They will essentially list your Aspergers traits. If you have had both psychologists (who know what to look for) and non-psychologists (who recognise what "normal" looks like in people) say you are on the spectrum, that is a good indicator!
Private diagnosis I was told was of the order of £500-£1000, I think depending on how complex the case is or how much work they would need to do...I was also told by my local autism provider that "people who pay for it, get a diagnosis, so it's not an indicator of if you actually have it or not." - not sure how true that is!
I would say don't worry about "limited NHS resource". If you can gather and present your own evidence now, they likely won't need to spend long on your case. I had two meetings with the NHS clinical psychologist lasting maybe 2 hours each; outside of this she probably spent say another 10 hours on me total, including interviewing a couple of family members, making a decision, and then writing the report (and LOL another hour reading the report I wrote about myself!). The NHS is there to support us, so use them if you need to. The only issue is that you will most likely have a long waiting time compared to your daughter, so it might be worth spending the time getting your daughter into the system before you spend time getting yourself in, you can always list "suspected autism in the family pending evaluation" on there, that's probably good enough). I'm not sure how much weight it adds to her case if you are diagnosed - first time I took my daughter to meet the specialists, it made no difference that I have a diagnosis myself.
As an indication, I was told there's an 18-month waiting list in my region before someone will see you. I e-mailed them exactly 18 months later (to the day, would you expect anything less?) and they booked me in a couple of weeks later for my first interview. With children, my daughter was first seen within about 4 months, because children have priority over adults, if they don't need immediate daily support, or maybe I think it's a different process for children.
You can use our Autism Services Directory to look for private assessment and diagnosis providers in your area - you can find the Directory here: https://www.autism.org.uk/services/autism-services-directory.aspx
You might also like to contact the Lorna Wing Centre who carry out privately funded assessments - details are here: https://www.autism.org.uk/services/diagnosis.aspx.
I hope that helps.
If they are a charity organisation, why are they charging so much for the assessment? That is more money than for a private diagnosis.
I don't know for sure one way or another, but I would be worried that might be a scam.