Aspergers In Adults

Aspergers In Adults throws up surmountable challengesJust as children can struggle with AS so too Aspergers in adults also presents challenges and hurdles. There is no cure for Aspergers. Hence kids who are diagnosed as having asperger syndrome will carry many of the difficulties and symptoms into their adult life.

 

 

Symptoms Of Aspergers In Adults

The symptoms in adults are similar to those in children and young people. Keep in mind too that aspies have strengths as well as weaknesses, just like everyone else on the planet. So even though there are challenges and difficulties there are also strengths that need to be remembered and encouraged.

  • Difficulty with problem solving
  • Problems making predictions
  • Problems using high-level verbal reasoning skills
  • Difficulty in participating in general conversations including ‘small talk’
  • Difficulties with seeing and understanding the view points of others
  • Difficulty empathizing with the feelings and emotions of others
  • Tendency to become stressed when routines are altered


Strengths may include:

  • Average to above average intellect
  • Passionate about a specific hobby or interest
  • Ability to work well within a set routine

Aspergers In Adults May Produce Challenges

Some of the areas that aspie adults need to work through and develop skills in may include:

  • Relationships
  • Marriage
  • Intimate Relations
  • Parenting
  • Work place

Relationships

Everyone, regardless of whether they have asperger syndrome or not, struggles at times in relationships with others. It is true that aspies may have more difficulties than some, but the fact remains that every person who has friends or is in a relationship sometimes find it hard to get on and communicate well with the other party or parties.

Those with aspergers can especially struggle due to the inability to participate well in ‘small talk’ and general, every day conversation. The difficulty with understanding jokes and abstract concepts can also make communications within a relationship somewhat harder than the average relationship.

Difficulty understanding social cues may also make communicating somewhat challenging for those with asperger syndrome. Finding it hard to understand facial expresses or to read between the lines with what others say or do can also make relationship building a challenge. Being attached to fixed routines may at times make it difficult to develop deep and meaningful relationships.

But regardless of the challenges it is possible to develop real friendships and relationships, but will take some effort and understanding from everyone involved.

Marriage

One issue that can especially arise in marriage is the difficulty that a person with aspergers has in empathizing with others. Emotions and feelings are important in marriage, or any relationship for that matter, and if the couple is unable to share these emotions with each other then it can put additional strain on the relationship and marriage.

It may not even be that the person with aspergers does not experience emotions, but rather that he or she does not know how to express these emotions. If you step back for a moment and imagine whatAdults with Aspergers Syndrome may find relationships difficult it would be like if you did feel various emotions in different situations and yet were unable to know how to express these emotions, then what would you do? How would you feel in such circumstances? According to some aspies this is indeed the case, that they feel emotions, sometimes evenly strongly, but are not able to display and express what they are feeling inside.

Intimate Relations

There is also the issue of relating sexually. It may be difficult for an Aspergian to fully grasp the importance of the entire concept of courtship and relating that precedes sex. It is really important that this whole issue be discussed and brought out into the open so that the marriage relationship can have the very best chance of success.

It may be that the one with asperger does not have a high sex drive, as some people who are married to aspies have indicated. Or it may also be that they simply do not know how to relate intimately with another person. If social interaction is difficult then being physically intimate can take this difficulty to a whole new level!

If you are in a relationship with someone who has been diagnosed as having asperger syndrome then it is important to discuss this situation with someone who understands aspergers. Do not just suffer in silence if this is impacting you or someone you love, but rather reach out for help.

Parenting

Parenting is not an easy task at the best of times. When one or both parents have aspergers then the task of being a parent may be even more challenging. It is important that the situation be explained to the child as they grow so that they can better understand that both parents love him or her and that it is because of the asperger condition that some of the additional challenges arise.

Problems may come up when routines and schedules are broken or changed. If the kids are meant to do something at a certain time and this gets altered then it may cause stress for the aspergian parent.

It may also be hard for the aspie parent to understand and empathize with the emotions that the child is feeling or expressing. This can leave the child feeling like the parent doesn’t care, when this is not the case.

Perfectionism can also cause strain on the relationship between the parent with asperger and the child. If things are not done the way the parent wants and they become angry then the child may learn to fear the parent and pull away from them.

Work Place

Oftentimes aspies feel most relaxed and comfortable when they operate within fixed routines. Hence a job that does not throw up unexpected surprises is probably the best choice for those diagnosed with asperger’s syndrome.

Possible Career Ideas

Many Aspergians can still live a very full and happy life and enjoy a fulfilling job or career. It is important to select a line of work though that plays to the aspie’s strengths while minimizing the need to rely on areas of challenge or weakness. If you enjoy technology and have a good eye for detail then there are many jobs or careers that you could pursue. Hence below is a list of possible career or job ideas.

  • Designing websites
  • Photography
  • Computer programming
  • Drafting
  • Auto mechanic
  • Building trades
  • Video game creator
  • Drafting

It is important to find something that you will enjoy doing day after day and that will not stress you too much. This list hopefully will spark some ideas for you.

Misspelling of Asperger

Sometimes when people have not known of Aspergers previously and they are researching the topic then they may type ‘Asberger’ into the search engine online instead of the correctly spelled Asperger. For instance, ‘Asbergers in adults’ or ‘asberger in adults’ may be the term that they type in to find out more information. I just thought that I would mention this as you may arrive at this page and be happy to learn the correct spelling of this word.

Conclusion

Aspergers in adults can be challenging just as it is for children and teens. Hence it is important to seek assistance from a support group or professional that understands the hardships faced by those with asperger and the family and friends of these people.

Even with the difficulties involved it is still possible for those adults with aspergers to live happy, fulfilling lives, to enjoy healthy relationships, to become parents and to have an interesting career or job.


Resources:

FAAAS – Families impacted by Asperger Syndrome
http://faaas.org/

Wikipedia – Aspergers
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asperger_syndrome

Adults with Asperger
http://www.wisegeek.com/what-are-the-main-symptoms-of-aspergers-syndrome-in-adults.htm

Asperger Emotions
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/aspergers-diary/200809/asperger-emotions-and-adult-relationships

Workplace ideas
http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/asperger_syndrome_and_adults

10 Responses to “Aspergers In Adults”

  1. Tammi says:

    I’ve just recently started researching Asperger’s out of concern for my 8 year old son, but as I read through sites like yours, I see so much of myself in them that it has raised more questions than answers, and additional questions as well. I am a single parent, have practically no friends, in spite of living in the same area for several years now – I have never been a social butterfly, but until I had my son, I at least managed to always make a few friends no matter where I have lived. My son does not do well in large social/group settings – he wanted to join cub scouts a couple of years ago, but he just sits there refusing to participate in the den meetings, not even wanting to play. His only interaction with the other kids is when he has something of interest to him and the other boys come over to see what he has. He is slow to interact with the other kids at his before & after school program, is extremely sensitive, gets frustrated quickly – throwing temper tantrums at home but not at school, and gets very upset at loud noises (not made by him). Last year he started crying every day about having to go to school – his grades are good, just didn’t want to go. His teacher said there wasn’t any bullying that she was aware of, and I started having him meet with the school counselor once a week for the last two months of the school year -they were thinking he may have anxiety issues. Is it possible for both of us to fall in the spectrum for AS? Is there any resources for parents & children who both may have AS to get more information/help from? My son was speech delayed & was put in speech therapy for 6 months and we worked with a CBRS for his behavior issues during that same time frame. As part of that, he was evaluated by a psychologist for the agency & they said he threw out some red flags, but as a state agency they would not diagnose or say ‘autism’, but it would be something to keep an eye on.
    things are at a point where we are both getting very frustrated, and I need to find a way to help us through this. The only family I have in the area is my mother who is a detriment and cannot be counted on other than to undermine my efforts. Thanks for any suggestions!

    • Justine says:

      Hi Tammi
      Thank you for sharing! :) It is not always easy to do, but I believe opening up can also open doors. :)

      Here is a list of some useful resources related to asperger’s syndrome:
      http://www.autismspeaks.org/family-services/resource-library/asperger-syndrome
      (Note a couple of links on the website mentioned above may no longer work. But there are still plenty that do and hence the reason I included it)

      I especially liked some of the information on this site:
      http://aspergers101.com/

      I hope that these sites will give you a starting point for your research.

      I do not believe that there is a simple, one-stop answer to your questions (I wish there was! :) ) But by researching and reading lots of information and others sharing their own personal experiences you will begin to see patterns and hopefully, gain some insights into your own situation with you and your son.

      My heart goes out to you and I will continue to lift you both up in my prayers that you will find the direction and answers that you need at this time.

      I hope to hear from you again and find out how you are both getting on.

      God’s Richest Blessings upon you both,
      Justine :)

  2. mary contrary says:

    I am 54 and have made my career as a successful supply cover teacher. This means I do not actually have colleagues and work mostly with strangers. If I stay too long in a school I start to become a bit stressed when i can no longer class the people I work with as strangers. I often say to people..I do not really know you…someone crossly said its been 2years! I have just scored38 on the AQ test and as I read the description I thought yes that is me exactly except that at 54 I have learned coping strategies.I have just one friend and as my husband tells me that is just because she clings to me like a limpet..we meet every Thursday and obviously she will not let me change the day or cancel or my name is mud. I just want to say that life is puzzling for everyone but for some more so than others and that with time you will learn coping strategies.when I look back on my childhood in particular I see how I have learned strategies and because we like routine we start by just mimicing what we see as normal behavior but it will soon become a routine so we are then seen as acting normally .which is why my children are still insisting I am not an aspie. They do not know how much it costs me in effort sometimes to do something
    different like going to a new restaurant with my husband..but ever after we must sit on the same
    table.life becomes easier ..

    • Justine says:

      Hi Mary
      I appreciate you sharing. Thank you :)

      I also agree. We do often learn ‘coping’ strategies and mechanisms as we grow older. I find too that even with these ways of coping sometimes certain situations still cause me stress, which I am sure others experience too to some degree. :)

      I too like routine and also find that life is ‘easier’ when I can do the same thing (such as sitting in the same place when I return somewhere :) )

      God Bless you, Mary :)
      Justine

  3. Friend says:

    I went to a psychiatrist for Asperger testing and was given standard testing (MMPI, et.al.), no Asperger specific testing and then told I cannot possibly have Asperger’s because I have been married 6 times. She said those with Asperger’s would either never marry or on rare occasions marry once and if they divorced remain alone from then on, not even dating. Then she handed me a diagnosis of Avoidant Personality Disorder and Major Depression. She described how I would have been as a child if I had Asperger’s and told me someone would have *noticed* if I had those problems. When I told her she had just described my childhood very well, she dismissed me with what I can only describe as contempt and picked apart every example I gave her. When I reminded her that Asperger’s was not officially accepted until the 1990’s and I was a child in the 50’s and 60’s, she actually became snippy. When she asked where I reach out for support and I included online on the list, she was just plain rude. So, even though I fit the list of Asperger’s traits very well, even though my childhood read like the definition of Asperger’s and Asperger’s is the only diagnosis that has ever fit me (and I have had a multitude of those….passive/aggressive, dissociative personality disorder, bi-polar, etc.), I was told that if I had only one marriage under my belt, I would *qualify* for an Asperger’s diagnosis but since I had six, there was no way. My sense of relief to have finally found out what has been wrong with me my whole life was gone and I returned to the land of the lost. My depression grew worse and my self image of being a total loser for no apparent reason grew, as well. Nothing in her diagnosis explained me or my life like Asperger’s did. In fact, her diagnosis had only a small shard that fit at all and even the basis behind THAT did not fit at all. So I finally decided to start researching her reason why I could not possibly be an Aspie…having had multiple marriages. And I started finding many instances where Aspies had multiple marriages, right down to an article by an Asperger’s specialist that started out with Asperger’s being a starting point or possible explanation for a trail of failed marriages, among other things.

    I want to be tested again, but there is no one where I live who takes Medicare who actually knows what they are talking about. My family will not accept that I could possibly have Asperger’s without a formal diagnosis and until they get that, they pretty much refuse to deal with me because I am the family loser they are sick of….they have already said if there was a REASON I am the way I am, it would be different, but sans that, they are done with me. I have an extremely difficult time maintaining friendships, so I have no friends where I live….at all. I rarely ever leave my house and I do not make friends easily….it is just exhausting trying to figure out what they want from me. I would like to have family support (even though my closest relative is over 8 hours drive away), at least over the phone, or even just to know they are there and they love me. Although I doubt my family would suddenly start loving me when it is clear they do not, I would settle for the illusion that would come with grudgingly offered acceptance. And maybe if people knew I had Asperger’s they might help me learn how to be a better friend by letting me know what they need. An expression I made up for a husband: *My crystal ball is in the shop, the parts have to be ordered from another dimension and won’t be in til next Friday….you are going to have to TALK to me!* because he always said I should KNOW what he wanted/needed…..and I was always clueless.

    I have taken a number of online Asperger tests and tested well into the Asperger’s range on every one. After the psychiatrist was done with me, I told her this….I do NOT, by the way, recommend doing that….and she laughed in my face. Quite literally….she invaded my personal space, leaned down and in and laughed right in my face. Then, of course, she told me that all online tests are completely worthless. At first, I took all of her completely unprofessional behavior personally and wanted to crawl under a rock and die, but now I believe she should have her license pulled until she updates her education out of the dark ages. My family also refuses to accept online testing as indicative of anything….they also laughed and told me *that doesn’t count*, get some REAL testing. My score on the test linked on this page was 42, btw.

    I am still looking for viable options for testing and counseling. So far I haven’t found any, but maybe one day someone will move to my area and set up shop. In the meantime, despite that psychiatrist’s derision, contempt and sneering laughter, I remain grateful for sites like yours where I can glean some self understanding and not feel so all alone.

    • Justine says:

      Hi Friend :-)
      Thank you for opening up and sharing your life and struggles with us.

      My heart truly goes out to you! Life is often not always easy, especially when we feel misunderstood and like we do not ‘fit in’. I hear what you are saying about feeling all alone! And I am glad that our website can help in a little way to show that you are not alone. I send out to you now a ‘cyber’ hug and prayer that you will know how truly special and loved you are.

      I am sorry to hear that the psychiatrist laughed at you regarding the online Asperger’s tests. While it is true that these online test are NOT a diagnosis and do not give conclusive results, they do still give indications that further testing may be a good idea. In my humble opinion she was totally unprofessional in her behavior towards you and I am sorry this happened to you.

      Please know that you are not alone and you are very welcome anytime to come back and leave further comments.

      Have you looked to see if there is a support group for Asperger’s syndrome or autism spectrum disorders in your local area? If so then perhaps you could reach out and see if you can find support there. It is worth looking into anyway.

      I truly do wish you all the very best for the future. :)
      Your friend
      Justine :)

  4. johnny says:

    Wow, according to the adult symptoms, I feel completely opposite to all of them except regarding conversation. The strengths I agree with though. What I can think though is that I took some psychology, sociology, education, public speaking and interpersonal communication classes with the purpose of being a better listener, empathizer and problem solver. I feel I have a good read on people as I tend to classify people in types. I see the same faces across different races and feel different personality types by facial features.

    • Justine says:

      Hey Johnny,
      Great to see you back and leaving another comment. :)

      The list for symptoms is just indicative of what many people with Aspergers syndrome experience. It does not mean that every Aspie has all of the characteristics in the list. Rather it is a good starting point as an indication of possibly having aspergers or ASD (autism spectrum disorder).

      Your point is also valid. As a child with aspergers or autism grows up it is possible to learn socially accepted skills and ways of behaving. These learned skills may also alter test results when a person takes as AQ (Autism Spectrum Quotient) test.

      Take care,
      Justine :)

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