What made you realise you have/might have autism?

Hey all, hope this is okay to post.

I’ve recently started to realise I may have autism - I originally thought it was ADHD but when I started looking at the crossover I realise that autism might be playing a role too!

I was just wondering what were the signs that originally made you realise you have/might have autism? Especially if you were diagnosed as an adult rather than as a child.

And a follow on question - looking back what did you do as a child that was likely due to autism? I want to get tested but seeing other peoples experiences I’m worried about the process - my memory is so rubbish I’m worried they’ll think I’m just wasting their time.

Thanks in advance! Yum

  • I always knew I was “different” but just thought I had a weird brain. When I was at uni my friends on a neurology course had taken an AQ test as part of learning about them (they all scored 10-15) and I had a go and scored in the high 20s. I understand what you mean about remembering childhood, my memory is awful! Have you taken any online AQ tests etc?

  • I had always felt i was different and weird, but never suspected autism until a therapist suggested it. As a child i lived in my own fantasy world. Was completely obsessive over art. Wouldn't go anywhere unless I knew where we were going and the reason for the visit.

  • In the past I had no real clue what Autism was.

    My wife's friend watched "Chris Packham - Aspergers and Me" and suggested we watch it.

    Blew my mind seeing someone else experiencing difficulties I've always had (and realising that most people don't think like me).

  • I've always felt at odds with the world, but due to the way autism was portrayed in the media thought it could not be something I had.

    Fast forward 30+ years of struggling to make sense of the world, social anxiety, being bullied, workplace meltdowns etc and I started to follow the Twitter account of someone who was a teacher.

    He and I had identical jobs, and we'd had many similar experiences. During the past few years he'd been diagnosed as autistic as an adult, and started writing in detail about his autistic life experiences and diagnosis.

    It was often like he was describing my life.

    We chatted via DM and he encouraged me to do some online assessments. I did so and every single one showed I was likely to be autistic, in the 'severe' category.

    After a recent MH crisis which caused me to resign from my job (I've had anxiety / depression diagnosis since age 19) I mentioned autism and what I had discovered to the MH nurse. He got the surgery to send me the AQ10 NHS questionnaire. I got 7/10 which triggered the referral.

     It may or may not help me to discover why I have struggled with my mental health for as long as I can remember.

  • Knew i was different all along.  Diagnosed at 18.  Social security ever since. Now 39 and approaching my very wits end.  Bloody covid hasn't helped.

  • Chris is someone i really admire.

  • I echo the Covid sentiment. Other than my wife I have no family...not being able to see the few close friends I have had been torturous. They are my family and support.

    18 months without the time I spend with them has been a major factor in my MH decline.

  • I only have my mother.  Already long alienated from friends before this started.  Reclusive behaviour since 2014.

  • I saw that. He's an amazing guy. The fact that I knew what he meant and where he was coming from on so many things probably should have made my potential autism more obvious to me.

  • My mother has MH issues which contributed massive to my own problems. Unfortunately, my lovely father died some while ago, as did my brother 

    My sister is still around, but my mother and various other factors have separated us. Haven't seen her in several years.

    I occasionally have contact with an aunt, via Facebook. Again, my mum's issues drove a big wedge between us all. We are not a close knit group.