I am a female to male transgender and I have only been living as male since age 14, I am 17 now. As a child growing up female and struggling to fit in anyway I believe I was not identified as a child on the spectrum, despite looking back and recognising many traits and symptoms which showed signs of this. At 14 I was diagnosed with Gender Identity Disorder, Mixed Anxiety and Depression Disorder as well as OCD and Adjustment Disorder; all of which show traits of ASD (besides Gender Identity Disorder).
After years of trying to work on myself with these diagnosis' I have come to the conclusion none of them are fitted to me (again besides Gender Identity Disorder). I visited my GP yesterday with my mother to discuss this and we agreed I should go to the child and adolescent psychiatrist to be assessed and discuss this. However the psychiatrist I will be seeing is in fact the psychiatrist I last saw. At the mental health clinic it has always been about my problems with depression and working towards being a man. But now that I am on the road to happiness, other problems have come forward; such as my issues with social communication and sensory problems (although my sensory problems have always been visible). Me and my family and friends and GP, all agree it is a good idea to be properly assessed. But I am still in great fear of being rejected because of what she diagnosed me with previously. It is very serious for me and I want it to be taken seriously as I don't want to destroy my future with isolation (as I am beginning to) and lack of social skills, because it is beginning to make work hard for me at times when I shut down due to a "sensory overload". I have been putting in research for years; involving the internet, books, my past, other people's opinions and a bit of self-discovery.
I wanted to know if anyone else has had any of this experience? And if everything was okay in the end? I always try to depend on statistics but it's impossible to find statistics on this topic. Please lend an opinion. Thanks.
Sorry to hear you've had such a heard time getting properly understood. I take it you still don't have an autism/ASD diagnosis?
I'm much older, and a cis man, but hope my opinion helps. My opinion is that psychiatrists are quite opinionated and often wrong. Within 12 months, I'd seen psychiatrist (1) who said I had severe depression but not autism; psychiatrist (2) who gave me the autism assessment and diagnosis and said I also needed depression treatment different from the first; and psychiatrist (3) who said I wasn't depressed and he didn't believe in autism (or specifically Asperger's). Although they're paid less, psychologists can reach a common understanding more often than psychiatrists.
I'm pretty sure there's an association between being trans or non-binary and being autistic (could probably find some stats somewhere). You may go through both changes (accepting an autism diagnosis being one, gender transition the other) at the same time, or one then the other. It's a question of knowing what the big issues are for you at the moment, telling other people about them, and finding which of them you can work on, in terms of trying to understand, accept or change as appropriate. Hope that makes sense.
I'd also add that cis autistic women are frequently misdiagnosed, eg as having a personality disorder instead of autism. Your local area should have an autism diagnosis service (so says the England autism strategy) - maybe you can find out a bit about that and ask to be referred there instead of the CAMHS psychiatrist.
Finally, about the social skills. It's difficult for everyone your age. I'd suggest trying a variety of different stuff so you expand your 'comfort zone', and if something 'goes wrong', don't jump to conclusions or blame yourself. You may always be 'different', but different isn't bad.
I don’t have a diagnosis. But I believe that is the position I am in as I resonate with the autistic spectrum a lot. I was told in hospital in 2014 I show “strong signs of autism”. Do you think I should be worried about the psychiatrist ?
Not worried about the psychiatrist as such. Misdiagnosis happens, and different specialists have different ideas, so a second opinion might be useful. If the people around you think you should be assessed, and you do too, then go for it. Maybe you'll get an ASD (=autism) diagnosis, maybe not.
The waiting list may be several months. Sensory problems aren't really accounted for by the other diagnoses that you mention, so it sounds worth it to me, but then I don't know you.
There are some online tests, like the AQ, EQ and SQ and facial expression tests. I did those before my diagnosis. One I particularly liked was the RDOS 'aspie test'. Good luck anyway.
I’ll keep them tests in mind. On the AQ test I scored 43. I hope it goes okay.