New member, adult assessment

Hi,

I'm new here, and came to this website because I've got some questions.

In September last year my depression relapsed again for the third time in three years. I went to my GP and she referred me for psychological assessment. At the assessment the psychologist referred me for therapy for my depression and anxiety but also referred me for an adult autism assessment. I thought nothing of the latter until the letter came through offering an appointment.

I attended the autism assessment this morning, and won't learn the outcome for a couple of weeks. But I don't know what a diagnosis (or non-diagnosis) is going to mean, and how it can help. I know I think differently to other people and struggle with some aspects of social interaction, but I work full time, I've got a mortgage on my own house, and I've learned to cope with being social. I'm 43, I'm just not sure how it's going to help make a difference either way.

Graham357

Parents
  • Hi Graham, when I realised I was autistic, last May, I knew straight away that I wanted a formal diagnosis. I felt I needed it, not so much to prove the diagnosis but to confirm it, especially when I’m telling other people. It also became apparent to me that it was actually a necessity as I have been out of work now for several years. I have tried doing part time jobs that I thought I could handle, but it turned out that I couldn’t. I think I’ve been ‘passing’ for so long now that I can’t do it anymore and to be honest, neither do I want to. Now I am beginning to understand the situation better, I am able to make plans to create an income in a way that suits me, although at present, I just need time to process the diagnosis and steady myself. Deciding to get a diagnosis is such a personal thing and I don’t think I really thought about it too much or what the benefits would be but I’m realising that the biggest benefit to me, seems to be that I feel like I’ve been given ‘permission’ to finally be me. For me, this is life changing, it’s forcing me to really think about what it is I need and want in life and what I can give, without burning out and falling into depression and burnout. As I’m working that out, I can  ask for the help I need and the formal diagnosis is supporting that and it is preventing me from falling back into what I’m good at or rather what I’ve done, what I’m used to, which is social worker/mental health practitioner, because even though I’m good at the job, as in, I’m good at working with the clients, the rest of the job is just too much for me. I’m working towards self employment/business owner as a metaphysician but I’m going to need support to make that happen as well as a good understanding or a better understanding of what is my ‘autism’ and what is me, so I can work with it and focus my attention on the positive aspects instead of trying to make myself fit into a box that wasn’t designed for me. I trust you will come to the right decision for you. 

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