I recently met an Aspie (online, and then in person), and she told me that I am one, too.. I did some reading, and many of the traits seem to resonate with me, so it seems likely she's right.
I don't think I need a diagnosis, but have joined here to find others who may be in the same position and would then understand me.
I have worked with computers and moved into programming (to make computers and computer-controlled equipment, do useful things.
While I tended to get on with colleagues, I have had almost no friends outside work, and since I became self-employed, have little contact with others.
I have always found it difficult to start a conversation with people, but I do better, online. Sometimes I get on with someone and manage to meet them, later - I tend to contact people from abroad, and then try to meet them during my travels.
Most days I only talk to the cats that visit me. I have discovered cat cafes in recent years, and have visited 10, so far.. including in Prague, Bratislava, Vienna and Budapest.
Sometimes I haven't spoken to anybody for weeks, but communicate online most days.
Even with people I know, including my siblings, I prefer texts and emails to phone calls.
I joined the Community today, mainly to learn how others cope with life's emotional problems and to read other stories, so that I can develop some better understanding and self-awareness.
I was accused of being Aspergers by a medical professional (a newly-qualified GP), but in the social circumstances of the conversation (as I said, accusatorial) I did not take it seriously. Sadly that was about 20 years ago. I've more recently started to read about Aspergers/High-Functioning Autism, and recognise enough of the symptoms, backed up with a high AQ score of 34-36, to self-diagnose.
For me, a formal diagnosis would not make any difference. In my area there are very limited health care resources and help for late diagnosis adults. What support there is should be given to those with associated severe depression and anxiety, I feel, rather than people like me.
Phones are weird things. Professionally I use phones all the time. I work from home, so spend hours on conference calls. But I am crap at social calls - phones seem to highlight an inability to read people. I can get into a real state of anxiety over making a first professional call to someone I have not had any contact, even electronic, before. I have just got used to coping mechanisms - e.g. emailing first and setting up a time for a call seems to help me.
PS I have a co-worker I talk to. Provided he agrees not to sit on my laptop or miaow during conference calls, we're fine.
Cats and aspies must be a thing! I am a programmer too, also self employed, and when I work from home I have two big purring black sentinels,who sit one either side of me and keep me sane :-)
You must have them well trained....mine just lay on my keyboard.....enforced tea break!
Welcome :D i also prefer emails and texts :)
Whilst I can't identify with you on the programming thing (probably a bit too left-brain logical for me!), I'm like you in all the other respects: no friends outside of work, little contact with others (apart from online, which is my world!), don't speak to people for days on end, prefer texts and emails to phone calls... and prefer the company of cats! My favourite analogy to explain my condition to others is that I'm like a cat in a world of dogs.
I was diagnosed 2 years ago, at the ripe old age of 56. For me, the diagnosis has been an overwhelmingly positive thing - enabling me to make sense of my life at last. It's made me feel much more comfortable with myself.
If you're interested, you could always try the AQ test. It's the standard pre-diagnostic test, developed at the University of Cambridge by Simon Baron-Cohen. Most NTs score in the teens (an NT friend of mine who tried it scored 5). Scores over 32 are usually indicative. I scored 42. It's here, anyway. Should only take you 10 minutes...
Welcome to the forums.