New member, adult assessment


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.


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  • Hi Graham,

    Sounds like quite a sensible psychologist. Autism (especially mild versions) often comes with anxiety and depression, so it's probably a good idea to figure out if that is the cause of it (for example stress caused by spending a lot of energy to fit in). Some common therapeutic approaches against depression and anxiety also don't seem to work particularly well with autistic people (I'm not basing this on studies, just on experiences people have written about). So if you are autistic they may have to adapt their approaches somewhat and recognise that there are things that can't be changed, so rather than trying to make you change them anyway they would perhaps focus on coming up with ways to better deal with them. I hope that would be a possible conclusion anyway, because it seems a lot of counselling is rather inflexible and if you don't respond well to the one-fits-all approach then it is seen as your fault because you don't cooperate, presumably because you don't want to get better.

    So I guess if you get diagnosed with autism not much is going to change otherwise but perhaps that therapy for depression and anxiety has a better chance to really help you and you (and possibly others) may start to understand a thing or two about yourself.