I'm still digging around trying to understand what sorts of things are counted as meeting threshold for RRBs / IS in an autism diagnosis. Please note that I don't intend to fake any at my upcoming ADOS! What I'm after is some examples that allow me to settle the question in my mind that wonders if my clinical interview missed RRBs / IS that I *do* have, but aren't the stereotypical "obvious" ones.
I don't want a positive diagnosis if I'm not genuinely ASD, but neither do I want a negative diagnosis if I *am*.
Apart from the minor success I've had in discovering the RBQ2a, I'm drawing a blank in my internet based research.
If your answer to all of the above was yes, then you do, in my opinion show RRBs. Whoever is doing the assessment should take into the account that RRBs will be subtler in some people than others, but that's not to say that they're not there. We all adapt coping mechanisms, because we have to, that doesn't mean that we're not autistic!
I think it is very difficult to know what "counts".
For example, I was explaining on another thread, I've seen many dietitians and actually most people have the same breakfast and the same lunch each day. It's actually not considered problematic unless not getting to have your particular breakfast or lunch every day exactly the same causes quite a significant impairment in your ability to function.
This is obviously just one example but I think it is often based on the response and ability to cope. I could be wrong but I remember having it explained once that it's okay and perfectly "normal" to have quite a repetitive life with "unusual" behaviours or quirks. It is considered "disordered" or "significant" based on the level of distress caused by change or not being able to engage in these behaviours.
Yep me too. ASD explains my life so completely and I'm having a hard time believing that I could be "simply" a socially awkward / impaired NT. My assessment seemed to start off with the assumption that I'm NT and then set out to prove it.
Yes I understand that completely - what I can't get to the bottom of is how on earth do you decide what's a quirk and what's Restricted and Repetitive / Insistence on sameness. I've read that one "thing" is a quirk, several are a RRB/IS. I have several. But I seem to not pass the threshold because I didn't line toys up as a child.
Also what's a significant impairment? We're all different in how we process stress. One person with ASD might have a meltdown if the shop runs out of their favourite crisps, another might just put another straw onto the back of the camel.
I feel that I ought to be able to say "ah well, I'm sure the experts assessing me know the answer here" and trust the outcome - but I've struggled for 25 years and they've seen me for 3 hours so far.
These are good examples. Where did you get the template to make a list?
I can't find any good references as what counts repetitive behavior.I'm guessing you are looking at the macro level, a car journey, rather than a micro level like a tick.
No template, I've literally just been writing everything I can think of about myself in a document and started separating it out under headings as it's grown. I'm reading 'Living in a Bubble' by Anthony King and it's really helped me put together a substantial fact file about myself.
It may not be all relevant but I want to be as prepared as possible. I really struggled to start writing it but once I did I'm now struggling to stop!!
By the time I get my referral through the NHS it might be a published book though...! And I'll still be undiagnosed!
I don't know if this contribution fits here but here goes...
One of the traits for autism is struggling with changes in routine. So whenever I have read about it, I have always just assumed this means daily routine. I've actually never had my morning routine disrupted and thought this trait couldn't apply to me.
A while ago i saw on a ch4 documentary that for some people it's not specifically routine but change with expected events. (So I'm not sure if this is to do with rigid thinking or routines, maybe they overlap).
I've had incredible anxiety today. It's an ongoing thing I'm trying to manage. I've been off work with it and been on reduced hours. Today was my first full day back in.
1. I attended a training event this morning. My brain knew there was nothing to be concerned about. I wouldn't be put in the spot. It was very informal. But couldn't shake off that anxiety.
2. Training finished earlier than expected so I returned to my usual job earlier than expected. I managed well. My brain knew I'd coped well and nothing bad had happened. Still the anxiety grew.
3. I found some paperwork which hadn't been completed by my cover when I was off a few weeks ago which meant I now had to do it. I thought it wouldve been done tbh and was a bit cheesed off that I now had to put the time in to catch up. (Given id been off with anxiety some of it due to workload). My brain was saying "it's no problem these things happen" but the anxiety got worse.
On my drive home I really tried to get to the root of why this had all made me anxious. The humsn brain me knew the rational explanations but the animal me just felt anxious. I felt more at ease when I identified "I think it's because I'd experienced 3 unexpected events in quick succession".
Does this all relate to routine or am i barking up the wrong tree? It's quite clear these unexpected events have caused me problems. Is my response excessive or normal?
I think what I'm trying to say is, I feel it wasn't the events themselves which caused the anxiety, but the rigidity of my thinking and that what actually happened didnt match with what i thought was going to happen in my mind.
I've had this before when people have just turned up at the house out of the blue.
I'm going to speak with my counsellor about how I can build more flexibility into my thought patterns.
I wonder the same sort of things. On so many occasions I *cope*, but what mental energy does it burn? When I get back to my desk and the voicemail light is on on my desk phone. When an email arrives with a red "urgent" flag. When I'm asked if I want to go to the pub quiz. When I'm told someone will be at my site the following day and would I take them to lunch?
Like you I wonder if it's normal or excessive. But for someone who now realises that they hardly feel anything at all normally to experience the sudden awakening in the solar plexus and the chills in the legs - I think it's significant.
And I wonder how safe it is to apply techniques like CBT, or generally "get out of my comfort zone & develop my weaknesses" when I know that after a decade of doing that I burned out and suffered horrendously for 18 months.
I totally can't handle expected things not happening or things happening unexpectedly. My reaction can vary from just feeling a bit thrown to full on losing the plot over it, luckily the latter of the two only happens very rarely. The reaction is definitely caused by rigidity of thinking patterns and a need for predictability, our brains simply can't move on and adjust to changes that quickly.