Should I seek a diagnosis or not?

Over the last couple of years I've come to realise that it is very likely that I am autistic/aspergers. In every online test I take I score very highly. My son is autistic and so as I have learnt more about autism I've felt that it would explain a lot of how I am and feel. 

I am now considering seeking a diagnosis but I am unsure whether to go for it and was hoping that some of you may be able to tell me what the benefits might be.

I'm a 38 year old woman, married with 2 young children. I think I am very good at masking outside of home but it takes a huge amount of effort. At home I'm constantly on edge, I wonder if I'm trying not to mask but then being judged for it so not sure who to be. I left work to care for my son but I don't feel I could return because I'm afraid of repeating some horrible experiences I have had there. I'm exhausted and struggling with anxiety, and the fight to get my son the support he needs is taking its toll on me because of all the meetings and phone calls. I am, though, worried that the people in my life who I have difficult relationships with could use a diagnosis to say that all of the problems are just because I'm autistic and not due to any bad behaviour on their part. 

Do you think a diagnosis might help me? If so, in what ways? 

Thank you for taking the time to read this far.

Parents
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  • I am brand new to this forum - I'm 51 and had my formal ASD diagnosis recently.  As a mum of 3 who has struggled with anxiety and depression for as long as I can remember, this has come as a huge relief and helps me to make sense of my life.  I always felt different and I understand your description of "masking" social difficulties - it is exhausting!  I would say go for a diagnosis in order to access further help and understanding.  Autism isn't everything I am but it is a big part of how I react to the world - those who don't want to understand this are not people I choose to be around.

Children
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