I'm a 20 yr old woman and after some research I've self-diagnosed with ASD, reading about it made me realize that it just fits. However, I believe I would benefit from a formal diagnosis to get better help for my anxiety and depression, as I feel some of the advice I get from my therapist doesn't work if I'm autistic. Plus I struggle with trusting my own assessment so knowing for sure would help. What is everyone's opinion? Should I try and get a diagnosis?
If anyone is in a similar situation come and chat!
Hi isthisreal, and welcome!
All I can really say is - if you think it would help you, then go for it. I was finally diagnosed 2 years ago, at the late age of 56, following a lifetime of problems in lots of areas of life - including misdiagnosed mental health issues. My depressions and anxiety are, I now realise, rooted in my ASC - and actually, since my diagnosis, they've improved quite naturally. The diagnosis gave me validation. It gave me something to hold up and say 'This is why I am what I am. I'm not a freak or a failure. I'm just different.' Also, of course, it enables me to get support (not so easy at my age), and to ask for reasonable adjustments in the workplace. They can't any longer get impatient and call me fussy. They need to take me seriously, as they would with a physically disabled person who needs things like wheelchair access, etc.
The only real downside of my diagnosis is that it came too late to help me in all sorts of situations where I've struggled: school, work, friendships and relationships, sensory issues, etc. That's why I'd encourage it for you. As long as you would feel comfortable with having a formal diagnosis - something that goes on your medical record. Some people feel that it's a burden, and I can understand that.
I assume you've done the AQ test. Talk to your GP. Persist if they demur. You have a right, just as anyone else does.
What does your therapist think, too, of the likelihood of ASC? It was my therapist who first pointed me in that direction, having first thought that it might be BPD because I exhibited most of the symptoms.
Keep talking, anyway. There'll be a lot of others here with a lot to tell you, I'm sure.
All the best,
Thanks for your reply Tom, it really helps! I've done the AQ test, and even though I felt like I wasn't "autistic enough", the results said I was well within the spectrum. I have to wait till September to see my GP so hopefully I'll get a chance to talk to him then. My therapist told me she doesn't think I am on the spectrum although I display "autistic behaviour", but I think I disagree with her. I'm not sure whether I should approach the subject again with her or not.
Hey isthisreal :)
My therapist didn't think I was on the spectrum either, but recently proven that I was. It's worth exploring all options, that's what I ended up doing. Anyways, I'm pretty bad at giving advice hah, so, I'll wish you the best!
Thanks for the advice, it's nice to know that therapists can be wrong sometimes! And thanks for the wishes :)
i'm 42 and in the same position as you....having self diagnosed from a lot of research that seemed to click everything into place.....
have a read of the link, if you haven't seen this before
I will, if you will.....it is just nerves putting me off and having that GP conversation are articulating everything that is putting me off...