I was excited when I read about this lady, Tracey Cohen today. Tracey has bravely stepped out to share her own experiences with Asperger’s syndrome in her new book “100 Lessons to Understand and Support Girls and Women with Asperger’s”.
Tracey lived most of her life wondering why she was different. Her mum had taken her to doctors and professionals from a young age asking for help, but they were never truly been able to give a helpful answer. If fact, many times Tracey’s mum, Joanie was made to feel that she was just overacting and that there was nothing really wrong.
Since often it is boys that seem to be more easily diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum, Tracey has focused her book on girls and women.
It was actually only at age 39, back in 2011, that Tracey was finally diagnosed as having an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and more specifically Asperger’s syndrome. Since this point in time she has become more aware of the need for information on the topic for females as there is not a lot written specifically about autistic women or girls.
I love Tracey’s passion to help make others more aware. Her desire is that her book will not only help those with Asperger’s, but that it will also assist their family members and friends in better understanding how this impacts life each day and the challenges that it may bring.
Receiving a diagnosis, as Tracey did some four years ago, does not remove the disability. Asperger’s syndrome and being on the autism spectrum are still there and still need to be dealt with each day, but having a professional diagnosis can help to provide validation, as it did for Tracey Cohen.
This can validate and begin to give answers as to why you are different from others around you, even other family members. This in itself is a powerful thing and can help bring healing from years of wondering “What is wrong with me?” or “Why am I different?”
Hopefully Tracey’s book, written from a first-hand perspective, can also help make those professionals in the field of autism more aware of the effect that it has in the lives of females of all ages. My hope is that this will help in diagnosing girls and women with Asperger’s and to also support them and their families.
What are your thoughts and experiences with autism or Asperger’s syndrome? Please leave your comments below. I will reply to you as well. Thanks.
Remember that you can make a difference in the life of someone today just by being who you are!