Health and Psychology

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Autism

Posted by Margaret Donohue on November 27, 2018 at 7:35 AM

We've discovered men and women are different yet again.  This is true for cardiac presentation, learning issues, and most recently autism spectrum disorders.The ccommonly perceived presentation of boys that may also be intellectually disabled, that are non-verbal, socially inept, don't make eye contact, spinning in circles and flapping their hands is a misleading stereotype.  It has been popularized in books, television and movies, is wrong for most autistic females.


More and more women are realizing they have intensely focused passions, repetitive behaviors and perhaps some issues with language that also fall within the spectrum.  But they are also social, verbal, make eye contact, and seek out people to have as friends.  The small percentage that are intellectually challanged, is outweighted by those that aren't. 


Further, autistic people are speaking out about the therapies that diminish them and force them to interact in ways that run counter to their own mental health needs.  And they don't use politically correct "people first" language. 


I'm reluctant to diagnose autism in individuals with other known genetic disorders.  But some psychologists aren't as reluctant.  So if someone is positive on a major test for autism such as an Autism Diagnostic Observational Schedule, or an Autism Diagnostic Interview, or a self-report such as the Ritvo Autism Asperger Diagnostic Scale or other similar screening instruments they may have autism, but if they are female they are less likely to be diagnosed with the condition.


It's also important to point out that individuals with autism may cope just fine when not in neurotypical environments.  They are normal autistic people not abnormal neurotypical people.


There's a wonderful meme circulating from Autistic not weird.com:

"I'm autistic, which means everyone around me has a disorder that makes them say things they don't mean, not care about structure, fail to hyperfocus on singular important topics,have unreliable memories, drop weird hints and creepily stare into my eyeballs."

"So why do people say that YOU'RE the weird one?"

"Because there's more of them than me."

If you need help with a diagnosis feel free to contact our office 818-389-8384. Or email at DonohueMA1@me.com.

Categories: Diagnosis

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