Hi, well this is daunting.
I'm going to see my GP tomorrow about my youngest son and myself. School has picked up on my son's struggles, just like they initially did with my oldest but he somehow got lost in the system.. This is so hard to explain and get down in a shortish message! I feel like I need to write my life story for anyone to understand, arghhh.I know something is wrong, I have always known. I have just put it down to being "born in the wrong era" or maybe "I'm from another planet". I have been to and from Psychiatrists and been on meds for years due to anxiety and depression (personally I don't feel depressed, I just feel different, I don't fit into this world) I had a problematic childhood all Psychiatrists have always focused on that and put my problems down to that too. I know this is not true, not all of it can be explained by my past.
Anyway, I'm nervous. I am SO nervous. Nervous about talking and nervous about not being heard again. Wish me luck please
I hope hopefully that it goes well for you, I had the EXACT same fear (still in the process of getting a diagnosis). I thought I need my entire history, which is really complicated, and that the GPs don't want to refer you so it's really difficult to get a referral, because online I read how the gp needs reasons to refer you so make sure you explain yourself etc. But I was pleasantly surprised, when I said I want a referral he did obviously ask me why, but it was more for genuine asking rather than the feeling of interrogation I'm used to (about myself and my behaviour), and after I mentioned a few things that would give him reason to actually refer me, he did the referral straight away and was really good during the whole appointment.
I've also had my whole life that I'm troublesome and bad behaved etc. And struggled a lot emotionally because I would say things are hard, and couldn't understand why this wasn't enough for others to understand my difficulties with things that are "natural" or "basic" to them. I think you can be a bit more confident in yourself, no one knows you and your two boys better than yourself, that instinctive feeling you have is most likely to be correct, and I regret letting myself be miserable during times that I believed those saying that I'm lazy, demotivated, depressed, emo, antisocial etc. etc. Maybe you can bring up that it's not depression because you know the difference, and your issues are caused by the actual difficulties with tasks/situations, not by negative feelings towards it.
Overall, don't stress too much, and focusing on the present might help more than the past, if you say you want a referral and then explain the issues, and also how these interfere with daily life (the reason behind being referred for autism), there is no reason for them to dismiss you. And if they do (very unlikely), go back to a different GP, any of your doctors can still refer you.
It really helped my mental preparation to read the NHS website about getting a diagnosis, especially because I saw that by law there must be somewhere to refer adults for autism, which meant my GP couldn't just dismiss my worries as it's not a minor thing. But as long as you get your points across, it will be fine anyway (I wrote it down in case I forgot or freaked out and couldn't communicate, then i could just show him my paper in worst case scenario).
And if it goes unfortunately (very unlikely), you can come back here and tell us all about it :)
Thank you so much Fay. I have written all my issues down so I can read them out to my GP, otherwise my mind will go blank when I'm in there. My tummy feels horrible with anxiety though, it's this fear of being labeled a hypocrite, hypochondriac etc.. I will let you know how it goes tomorrow :)
I've grown up with exactly the same feelings of isolation and feeling 'different'.Only just come to realise that I'm 99.9% certain that I'm on the spectrum, it's the whole disconnect feeling which really does get me on the bad days. But now I can put a name to 'why' I feel and behave like I do, and why I think others behave towards me.I now at least feel more at ease with myself, and know what I need in order to feel 'comfortable' in the world. I've learned to work my way around my issues, by turning it into a problem which needs an acceptable answer for my brain to process.
Have you had a diagnosis yet or do you plan on getting one?
done a a few online ones, all pretty much say i'm a higher functioning autistic.I 'function' ok in the main when i'm around people i'm comfortable with. not so much in an unfamiliar crowd or with family. I'm very much fact based, but on an empathy level, there is this big void of knowing how to deal with certain situations, I'm aware i should know, but i cant seem to process, unless the 'why' bit is satisfied.Just to give an example, ive moved into a flat, known work needed to be done on it, had a few issues beyond my control which most 'normal' people would deal with and not let it get to them, but I have. I've had about 2m of wall to paint in order to move sofa back, clean up, and get flat into a more habitable state. taken me 4 weeks to muster up the will to tackle it, which i did yesterday in 3hours. Motivation to do more has kicked in, now I've proven to myself that there is a reason to get it done, but it felt like an absolute monumental task before switching off and getting on with it.Ive got GPs appointment booked, just to get an official diagnosis, which tbh, is more for everyone elses benefit than mine.
All sounds very familiar except for the empathy thing. I have too much of it
i'm treating any autistic trait as my own 'super power' - I can visualise things in my mind of how something should look, and can get it done with out 'faffing'.Actually come in handy in my line of work, and looking back, I get frustrated when other people cant see visual solutions or have to go about that whole long winded approval process.Sort of makes me glad in a way that I've lived nearly all of my life not knowing. Now I do, Im embracing it.
You can also ask for the contact info for the place you are being referred to (email, phone number, everything), because I had to do a lot of chasing up afterwards, and waited an extra four weeks until I found an email for the place (I'm not good on the phone).
And you can ask the GP to email your referral instead of posting it (or both), because when mine got lost, they said go back to GP and ask him to email or fax it again to them.
And if he doesn't mention it, you can ask about the waiting time (I should have received a letter within 6 weeks).
I've had about a 3 month delay due to communication issues from posted responses, but I managed to sort it all out through email, so I should finally get an appointment soon.
As for anxiety, it seems unavoidable when it comes to the things we care about the most. But try to relax and be positive, having awareness and going to the GP are both huge steps forward, although you can't change your past, you can definitely pave the future for your children and yourself (even without the GPs help), which is worth a lot.
I'm awful on the phone, I avoid it as much as I can. Thanks for the advice, I will ask the GP for emails