Asperger’s became a recognized disorder within 1994. Before that, an individual who had Asperger’s was thought to be unsociable or socially awkward. A few individuals were misdiagnosed as possessing a psychiatric disorder, and were labeled ‘odd’ or obsessive compulsive.
Asperger Syndrome Gender Bias
World Health Organization’s ICD-10 category provides the male-to-female ratio as 8:1. It means that around 8 times more men than women are diagnosed with Asperger’s. But, the apparent ‘gender bias’ might be because of the truth that females who have Asperger’s are better at copying and learning social skills, and are thus more capable of disguising their condition.
Asperger Syndrome Causes
It isn’t clear what the cause of Asperger syndrome is, yet specific things don’t cause it. TV, parenting choices or styles, tantrums, junk food, and family circumstances don’t lead to Asperger syndrome.
Present studies indicate that there’s likely to be both a genetic and neurological cause. It means that within a few families there’s more than a single child, or family member, who has this disorder. Within most families who have affected kids, there are additional family members who possess a few similar hardships, yet don’t have this diagnosis.
Asperger’s in Adults
Asperger’s is amongst the autism spectrum disorders, and is categorized as a developmental disorder which affects how your brain processes data. Individuals who have Asperger’s possess a broad array of difficulties, skills, weaknesses, and strengths.
Typical characteristics involve a hard time with forming friendships, communication issues (like a tendency to take words literally), as well as an incapability of understanding body language and social rules. Asperger’s is additionally referred to as Asperger Disorder.
Even though Asperger’s can’t be cured, suitable experience and intervention may assist people to develop compensatory strategies, skills, and assist in building up coping skills. Social skills training that teaches people how they can behave in various social situations, is oftentimes thought to be of high value to those who have this syndrome.
Psychological therapy (and Cognitive Behavior Therapy) or counseling may assist those who have this syndrome in understanding and managing their behavioral responses.
Asperger Syndrome Symptoms
To repeat, more men than women are diagnosed with Asperger’s. As every individual with the syndrome will experience various symptoms and seriousness of symptoms, a few of the more typical characteristics involve:
- Above-average or average intelligence
- Hard time with high-level language skills like problem solving, verbal reasoning, making predictions and inferences
- Hard time empathizing with other people
- Issues with understanding an additional individual’s point of view
- Hard time engaging within social routines like ‘small talk’ and conversations
- Issues with controlling feelings like anxiety, depression, and anger
- Preference for schedules and routines that may cause anxiety or stress if the routine is disrupted
- Specialized fields of hobbies or interests
- Emotions of others
An individual who has Asperger’s might experience issues comprehending the emotions of others, and the subtle messages that are sent by facial expressions, eye-to-eye contact and body language often are misinterpreted or missed. Due to this, individuals who have Asperger’s may be mistakenly considered to be uncaring, selfish, or egotistical.
Those are unfair labels due to the individual concerned being neurologically incapable of understanding others’ emotional states. Individuals who have Asperger’s usually are remorseful, upset, or shocked as told their actions were inappropriate or hurtful.
Sexual Conduct Codes
Studies into the sexual comprehension of those who have Asperger’s are within its infancy. Research suggests that people who have Asperger’s are as interested in sex as anybody else, yet most have trouble with the host of complicated skills needed to successfully negotiate intimate relations.
Individuals who have Asperger’s may occasionally look to possess an ‘immature,’ ‘inappropriate,’ or ‘delayed’ comprehension of sexual conduct codes. It may occasionally cause sexually unsuitable behavior. For instance, a twenty-year-old who has Asperger’s might exhibit behaviors that befit a teen.
Even people who are vocationally or academically successful or high achieving may experience struggles in negotiating the ‘unwritten rules’ of dating.
Problems for partners of Individuals who have Asperger’s
A few individuals who have Asperger’s successfully can sustain relationships and parent kids. But, as with most relationships, there will be challenges.
One typical marital issue includes unfair distribution of duties. For instance, the partner of an individual who has Asperger’s might be used to performing everything within the relationship as it’s only the two of them. But, the partner might need emotional and practical support as kids come along, something that an individual who has Asperger’s might be ill equipped to offer.
As the partner becomes upset or expresses frustration that they’re provided no assistance of any kind, the individual who has Asperger’s typically is baffled. Tension within the relationship oftentimes makes the symptoms worse.
The adult’s diagnosis of Asperger’s oftentimes follows their youngster’s autism spectrum disorder diagnosis. The ‘double whammy’ could be very distressing to the partner who must simultaneously cope with both diagnoses. Counseling, or joining with a support group in which they could speak to others facing the same challenges, may be useful. A few typical issues for partners of those who have Asperger’s involve:
- Feeling highly responsible for their partner
- Not having have their own needs met in a relationship
- Loss of emotional support from friends and family members who don’t completely appreciate or understand the added strains put on a relationship by Asperger’s
- Sense of isolation, due to the challenges of their relationship being unique and not easily comprehended by other people
- Frustrations, as issues in the relationship don’t seem to improve in spite of massive efforts
- Doubting integrity of a relationship, or constantly wondering if they should end a relationship.
- Hard time accepting that their partner won’t ‘recover’ from Asperger’s
- Following accepting that their partner’s Asperger’s can’t be ‘cured,’ partners often can have emotions like disappointment, despair, and guilt
Asperger Syndrome and the Workplace
FaHCSIA (Commonwealth Families, Housing, Community Services & Indigenous Affairs), along with an array of expert employment services, assists to place individuals who have disabilities within the work place.
An individual who has Asperger’s in Adults might find their job opportunities restricted by their disability. It might help to select a career which takes into consideration their symptoms, and will capitalize on their strengths instead of highlighting their weaknesses.
Vocation Ideas for Visual Thinkers
These vocation recommendations are adapted from resources created by Temple Grandin, who possesses high-functioning autism, as well as who works as at the Colorado University as an assistant professor. Suggestions involve:
- Bank teller
- Filing positions
- Piano (or additional music instrument) tuner
- Cab driver
- Copy editor, journalist
- Computer Programming
- Building trades
- Building maintenance
- Video game designer
- Webpage designer
- Handcraft artisan
- Appliance repair
- Equipment design
- Commercial art
Where to Gain Assistance
- Your physician
- Asperger Syndrome Support Network Telephone (03) 9845 2766
- Amaze – Autism Victoria Telephone 1300 308 699 or (03) 9657 1600
- CDDHV (Center for Developmental Disability Health Victoria) Telephone (03) 9902 4467
- FaHCSIA (Commonwealth Department of Families, Housing, Community Services & Indigenous Affairs) Telephone 1300 653 227
- Alpha Autism Employment Program Telephone (03) 9885 2777
Things to Keep in Mind
Social skills training that teaches individuals who have this syndrome how they can behave in various social circumstances, is oftentimes thought to be of high value to people who have Asperger syndrome.
Asperger’s Association of New England: http://www.aane.org/about_asperger_syndrome/asperger_syndrome_diagnosis_adults.html