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Anyone else dealing with Asperger's?

 
 
Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 06:52 am
My daughter was diagnosed with Asperger's several years ago.
It hasn't been easy, but she'll graduate from high school a week before her 18th birthday and will go on to college to become a vet tech.

I, on the other hand, am on Zoloft. :wink:
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Type: Discussion • Score: 4 • Views: 7,203 • Replies: 19
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dadpad
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 07:59 am
we have an Autistic school her in town Happycat but I know nothing about Asperger's.
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Noddy24
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 08:20 am
My husband has a complicated family and there is one Asperger's syndrome on the fringes.

His condition was clear enough that he was diagnosed as a pre-schooler and serious enough that the pediatrician recommended the family apply for Social Security Disability in his name.

He's nearly eight now and has moved from special Head Start to special education in the local school system. He's toilet trained--except for accidents every night.

He likes ducks--evidently bath time is quite a project.

Happycat, you must be looking forward to your empty nest with very mixed emotions.
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shewolfnm
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 09:33 am
One of my good friends has a child with aspergers.

Her child is still in pre-school, heading to kindergarden.
From seeing what she is having to do, and what she is going through , I can only imagine how you feel.
Relief? Fear? concern?
I think, from an outsiders position only, I can absolutly understand why you might be feeling relief. It is not easy having a child with aspergers.

I wish your daughter the best. It sounds like she is able to function well?
And knows what she wants to do already! That right there is amazing. Im 30 and just now finding out what I want to do..
at 18 the only thing that was on my mind ws boys , boys, and oh yeah...
boys.. . HA!

Has school been easy for her?
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sozobe
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 09:42 am
There was an interesting article in the New York Times recently about people with Asperger's going off to college. It included information about new support networks there that might be useful:

A Dream Not Denied; Students on the Spectrum"

My husband is a scientist and in his circle I have met many people with mild Asperger's. It's mostly marked in them by acute social cluelessness. They're successful scientists though.
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boomerang
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 11:27 am
I could have been the spokesmodel for Aspergers.

You know..... except for that whole not liking other people to look at me or talk to me thing......

Luckily they did not have that designation back in the 60s so my family thought I was quirky and everyone else just thought I was weird and stayed out of my way.
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happycat
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 12:22 pm
Thanks for the responses everyone!
She wasn't diagnosed until middle school...up til then we were all just tearing our hair out trying to figure out just what it was - she would have meltdowns at school and I'd have to go up and calm her down.

Asperger's is so damn confusing! She's so very intellegent that sometimes it's freaky. Like sozobe said, some scientists are Asperger's.
She has one of those brains that retains everything - she's a whiz at World History and Science....but at the same time she sucks at social clues. That's been the problem all along - friendships are sometimes difficult for her.

About 4 years ago we started her on a new med called Abilify. It was supposed to be for scizophrenia but her psychiatrist told us that it was shown to help with Asperger's. We saw a remarked improvement in her general mood in less than 2 weeks. Plus it helped with the OCD aspects of Asperger's.

Overall, she's a normal 17 year old girl. The most difficult thing for us during the high school years are trying to find the line between normal teenage behavior and Asperger's behavior. lol! At this age, it's really hard to tell!

Another problem is her friends - she has always been integrated in the regular classes in school, but she is in a special homeroom for kids with similar problems. Thus, she gravitates to those kids. So when she gets together with her friends, we are dealing with their special needs also.
For instance, one boy that she likes doesn't do well in crowds. Another won't travel over bridges - which makes it difficult because we have a boat and to get to our marina and pool, we must travel a bridge over a river.
Her closest girl friend seems to have a problem with lying....and unfortunately my daughter believes everything this girl says.

Life with an Asperger's person is a constant state of trying to maintain the balance. I used to feel like I was walking on eggshells all the time...trying to maintain without having behavior explosions. It's gotten much much easier thanks to time (age) and meds (hers and mine, lol.)

boomerang - she loves to have people look at her!! lol! she loves to be the center of attention.....ALL the time!

Noddy - I won't have an empty nest. She'll still be living here - right now I can't even imagine her living on her own; she's too irresponsible about daily things. She would probably be the epitomy of "absent minded professor." lol.
Besides, I have a 13 year old son at home. He's decided that he wants to be a chef, so next year he will start at a vocational-technical high school that has culinary classes. We went to the Open House at the school last week and when we toured the kitchen/classroom he told me he got "butterflies in his stomach" because he's so looking forward to going there. He's a trip. Very Happy

sozobe - thanks for the link!
cyphercat
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 01:59 pm
I just read an article in Psychology Today about a young woman with Asperger's. I don't know that it would have anything helpful for you, but I thought you might be interested in reading about a girl a few years older than your daughter (she's 24) and in college, and how she's doing. Here 'tis.
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happycat
 
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Reply Sat 18 Nov, 2006 03:22 pm
cyphercat wrote:
I just read an article in Psychology Today about a young woman with Asperger's. I don't know that it would have anything helpful for you, but I thought you might be interested in reading about a girl a few years older than your daughter (she's 24) and in college, and how she's doing. Here 'tis.



Thanks cyphercat! I can certainly identify with that....especially the part about getting lost in her own neighborhood! My neighbor asked me one day, shortly after my daughter turned 16, if she would be getting her driver's license. I couldn't stop laughing. We'd never see her again!!!
Laughing
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Solarus
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Nov, 2006 04:51 pm
drugs
Get your kid (and yourself) off that bullshit pharmaceutical crap. I am an Asperger's Syndrome case and it's been damn hard, but the one thing I know more than anything else is that if I had been using meds to normalize myself all through high school, I would be significantly more disadvantaged than I am now. I'm lucky my parents were smart enough to pull me off of the meds, which went from ritalin on through zoloft, dexedrine, nortriptaline, and various others. And those were just the drugs they gave me for my misdiagnosed ADHD condition. Thing is, those drugs worked. They made me pretty damn normal. But they had side effects. Like being unable to sleep. So they prescribed me some sleep meds. Then those had me all drowsy in the mornings. So they wanted to prescribe MORE drugs to eliminate this NEW side effect.

The thing is, I've made many improvements since I was taken off the meds. I fought with my parents a lot, and gave them far more hell than they ever could have deserved. But they held firm and didn't take the easy way out by drugging me into "normality." And I am eternally grateful to them.

There is only one substance I know of that can improve AS does not have significant side effects, and I'm almost certain everyone who reads this will dismiss the suggestion without any consideration at all: marijuana. Yes, marijuana. It has no significant side effects and it helps alleviate social anxiety. I have not gotten truly angry since I began treating myself this way. Not that pot makes a person with AS into a regular person. It just makes them a more relaxed person with AS. Which is a really good thing, since AS has a nasty tendency to unrelax a person.

The moral of the story is: Humans know NOTHING AT ALL about how brain chemistry really works. Why trust some human in a lab to rearrange chemistry he knows nothing about? It's like hiring a redneck to work on a mainframe computer. He may be able to do what he wants, but chances are he'll screw a bunch of other things up.
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happycat
 
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Reply Mon 27 Nov, 2006 07:48 am
Solarus - I appreciate what you are saying. I've been a smoker for over 35 years and I know that I would have a difficult time dealing with what goes on if I didn't. Yes it does help ME to relax far more than any other prescribed medication ever did.
But in my daughter's case I don't think pot would help. For one thing, she is already scatterbrained enough. lol.
If that works for you I'm very happy! Maybe someday it will work for my daughter- when she is an adult....but right now turning a 17 yr old on to pot is not even a possiblity. It's so far out of the question that I won't even entertain the idea. Legal, moral, ethical, medical and parental issues abound!

She gets frustrated, and when she gets frustrated she lashes out. The one and only med that she takes now helps her to keep rein on what used to be beyond her control.
It also helps her focus on her task at hand - something that the ADD part of AS made impossible before.

I'm glad that you've found something that works. I also believe that pot is sorely underused as a therapy drug. But in this case, I don't think it's the appropriate answer right now.

Thanks, though....and good luck to you. Smile
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spectrummum
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Oct, 2008 03:17 pm
@happycat,
I have four on the spectrum and I also have aspergers syndrome
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Oct, 2008 09:18 pm
@spectrummum,
Jump in spectrummum!

As a newbie in the field of teaching I am interested in hearing adults' experiences in school as kids with autism and LDs. Specifically, what helped and what held you back. While things have changed over the years, I fear there is still lagging training for teachers and underdeveloped "best Practices" for these mainstreamed kids.
spectrummum
 
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Reply Tue 28 Oct, 2008 07:04 am
@littlek,
I had no interventions I was undiagnosed untill 2005
I am now 40
littlek
 
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Reply Tue 28 Oct, 2008 05:27 pm
@spectrummum,
That's interesting - you were diagnosed that late. What did you think? Was your reaction a "No Way!" or was it a "yeah, that's what I thought" or something else?
Izzie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 28 Oct, 2008 05:35 pm
@littlek,
reading along...... here if anyone wants to know stuff - though each person is an individual.
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spectrummum
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Oct, 2008 05:21 am
@littlek,
I find your posts very confusing and hard to understand
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Oct, 2008 03:44 pm
@spectrummum,
I apologize!
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guedern
 
  1  
Reply Wed 17 Feb, 2010 02:12 pm
@happycat,
My son is 14 and has ADHD and asperger. My son was not diagnose with aspergers until I found a wonderful psychiatirst that diagnosed him imeddiatly when he was in 4th grade. The school tried to send my son to a school with kid that have severe mental problems. I was my own advocate and block that move, its been a night mare. Half the teachers do not know how to manage these kids,, and there is little help out there. I also have a 22 year old girl that is normal, and in 1999 I had a child with down sydrome, I was 38. I am under stress all the time and no amount of mediatioin can help me. I purchased a book called, "So hard to be your friend." I hate giving my kid medication but he could not survive without it, nor me. I am a nurse on a cardiac unit and getting ready to graduate with a master, as an advanced pratice nurse. I used to cry when my son would come home and complain that he has no friends, very sad. Now try try to help him overcome this because I worry about suicide.
suekim1
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 11:33 pm
@guedern,
Dear giedern, I can relate to your story below as My 15 year old was diagnosed with ADD/ADHD while he was in his elementary school(around 5th grade) but I saw more than just ADD/ADHD. After spending few thousand dollars for a private consultation from a child psychologist all I got was it is very complicated case. Meaning he could not firmly diagnose anything for him. But recommended 504 plans which has not been working for him. Since then I had school assess him twice but his results will always come back as average or above average thur not qualify for any special education for him. So my son has been in a mainstream classroom. He frequently mentions about suicide, how he hates his life, nobody at scool likes him etc.,. I don't think school understands how stressful it can be for a working parents who have to be their own and their child's advocate, trying to promoto a positive environment, be patient (God challenge me in every day), but we can burn out too as we are also a human who needs break from all these responsibilities that we have to do as parent with child who has asperger. I hope there can be more resources that I can tap into such as a group social skill classes that will teach him about subtle body languages and how to read between lines, things that they really need. I hope you have found such resources in your area and I will pray for you and your son.
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