Symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome

These are a collection of symptoms from an aspie’s perspective. For a a list of more medical definitions, see The Triad of Impairments and there’s a page of tips if you Think You Might Have Asperger’s Syndrome.

  • People greet you by saying “here comes trouble” and you don’t know whether or not they’re joking.
  • You scare off new friends by becoming obsessed with them.
  • People call you “sad” for being interested in interesting stuff.
  • You try to help someone, only to find your help wasn’t wanted.
  • You hear a lot about how “you’re only making things worse for yourself”.
  • You don’t understand what’s so funny about teasing. You feel you’re being mocked.
  • You are exhausted by always pretending to be normal, but fearful the Real You will be rejected.
  • You hope, with each new group of people you meet, that this time you’ll get it right.
  • You laugh later, and more loudly, than everyone else.
  • People say you speak too quickly, but you know you have to get the words out before you forget them.
  • You notice that after people have known you a while, they stop asking how you are.
  • You’re the only person wanting the music turned down.
  • You forget to eat.
  • Others get annoyed b/c you write down/read back details of appointments to be sure you got it right.
  • You find yourself unable to explain something without giving the whole backstory too.
  • You can cope with a party, but have to hide in the loo to recover every now and then.
  • You see other people exchange “a look” but don’t know what it means.
  • You like to hide away on your own, especially after spending time with other people.
  • You find it hard to work out what will happen next, particularly if people are involved.
  • You don’t instinctively know when you’re being teased.
  • You organise things: from smarties to your DVD collection… everything’s in order. Or not!
  • You load the dishwasher the same way every time… and redo it if someone does it differently.
  • People think you have no sense of humour. (They’re wrong, but that’s what they think!)
  • Your senses seem to be more sensitive than other people’s.
  • It’s “always you”.
  • Other people think you’re being intolerant, and you can’t understand how they cope.
  • You feel “different” from most people, and feel that you don’t “fit in”.
  • You are so passionate about your hobby/sport/interest that you lose track of time.
  • You’re always the last to get the joke!
  • You were bullied at school, or college, or work.. and/or are still being bullied.
  • People think you’re being rude and/or critical when you’re not meaning to be.

    Related content:
    » Think you might have Asperger’s syndrome?”
    »
    Asperger’s in Women
    » Bullying & Abuse
    » It’s Okay to Want a Diagnosis!”
    » The Triad of Impairments (in real terms)
    » Diagnosis Stories


  • 117 Responses to Symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome

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    1. emms says:

      I often wonder if I have asperger’s. I get along best with autistic people, have dated a few autistic guys, am highly nervous. I am 31 years old, and was actually pretty popular in high school and throughout college. I was acknowledged as being very weird though (like I’d wear pink blush in high school that covered my entire face and made my face red, I’d carry around a cardboard box tied to my chest with a sign that said ‘free hamsters,’ I’d stop people in shopping malls and ask them where the toilet was in French, I’d fake fall, I’d greet my new dorm-mates by telling them I was a hermaphrodite, and as an obnoxious teenager, I got lots of laughs. And I now realize that I had lots of friends because I needed the attention and affection, and I just don’t need that now. Therefore, I do know if I have Asperger’s). I did all sorts of weird things in my teens and early twenties and wasn’t really afraid to act that way, but then, I started “becoming normal.” I spent all of my 20’s living abroad in China and in Europe. But now that I am back in the states, I am again having a horrible time socializing at work. I can’t understand things unless they are detailed for me. I cannot express myself or have little to express. I only want to be by myself, and if I am at a party, I’ll probably get too drunk. I’ve severed so many friendships in the past few years. I just don’t know how to maintain connections or reach out the way I feel I should. I feel there is some emptiness in the type of communication around me, and I can’t play the part in interacting with friends or family members in the same way. At 31, I am much better at normal interaction than I was as a teenager and in my early 20’s and I am I sure I learned a lot while living in China and Europe. I think it may be because I am too independent, but for some reason, I do not need the interaction that others need, and it’s become a huge problem and probably the reason people have un-friended me. I can play the part of being social and friendly, but do I really crave affection, attention, and love? Whenever some genuinely likes me, I am skeptical. I am skeptical of my boyfriend who “just can’t figure me out” and who says that our relationship would be better if I just opened up, you know, told him the ends and outs of my day and what I want in life. I just can’t.

    2. Laura says:

      Holy crap! To be honest, I’ve always felt the need to fit in and be “normal” , and i’m actually pretty gullible, but with this I found out I don’t have aspergers! I am pretty sensitive to loud noises, but I actually enjoy loud music. I’ve always had a fear of people, but I found myself actually enjoying a party. I recently have aquired depression bc of my high level of anxiety.
      Because of this, I’ve always had less friends but I always wanted to have some, and now I have a best friend and a few more friends and most of the time i’m the first to get the joke I have however clung to some friends, I honestly don’t have anything on this list so I’m really happy! Idk why it terrifies me to have a “mental problem”

    3. Someaspiegirl says:

      All my friends on autism spectrum say i must have asperger and it actually made me wonder for a while. Even my boyfriend says he thinks im an aspie. Should i just go on with it, should i get proffesional help? It just sits in my mind all the time right now. I dont really act like a typical aspie. Ive never been bullied in school, but i didnt have true friends either. I was always the one who was indifferent and logical about all the drama and people came to me to seek for advices, but i was never someone who you give a call about a party or meeting first. I never felt too much emotion. Sometimes when i was a kid i used to imagine my parents are dead just to check if i can cry (obviously i did). I hate the loud places and being around people i dont know. I will not eat food that tastes funny or has a weird structure (i used to eat like 5 type of meals through all my childhood) also whenever i step on something that feels odd under my feet i jump so i cant wear sandals or anything like that. I cant focus at more than one thing at once and still even as an adult i watch sad movies so i can cry a bit from time to time. All my life feels like guessing if i did something good or bad because im never sure and theres been countless times when my parents were upset with me for doing something and i couldnt understand why but i need that saying that im sorry is expected so i said im sorry anyway. Same now with my boyfriend, i tend to say “im sorry” even when nobody is really upset with me but i just feel insecure that i did something and i dont realize. I dont have problems with metaphores and im actually obsessed with literature and languages. Can i have an asperger syndrome? Can it be something else?

    4. Harriet says:

      Recently the idea of Aspergers has really eaten at me after I found myself relating to many of the signs of Aspergers like some of the sensory parts, or the inability to get social cues. I was in a boarding school from the ages 11-now, during which I found the whole socialising aspect really hard and I was picked on during my school years. I’ve been told that I’m a really amiable person when I first meet people, but yet I’ve been told by many dormmates that the reason why other people no longer keep in contact is that I’m too intense. I’ve always found the socialising part of life really hard and often times, I get really upset and lonely as a result; to which my friends would say that “I needed to get my head out of my books.” or ” Just try harder. You never talk.” But I’m trying. I try to get their jokes and I try to help only to find often times they reject said help. I went to the GP at school in regards to it. She replied to me with “paranoid and probably stressed from (your) recent foot injury and (your) A level.” as well as “probably just your introverted tendencies.” I don’t know if I’m suddenly just ‘faking’ it because I want a name for this. Am I just being paranoid and attention seeking? My parents aren’t completely onboard on getting a diagnosis, saying that “What’s the point? It doesn’t matter. You’ve survived 18 years without diagnosis. So why should it help? You just need to learn that how to turn it down sometimes, because you sometimes bring it upon yourself” And I just need to understand what’s going on and I am so confused and I just really wanted someone to just listen to.

    5. Ocdchick says:

      I’m 45 and have been diagnosed with major depression, borderline personality, ocd bipolar, SAD, and I’m sure a couple of others I’ve forgotten. I’ve been medicated for years on some really heavy duty drugs including valium for two years and efexor which gave me epilepsy. Ive spent more time than I care to recall in the loony bin. I believe much of that could have been prevented had I received a correct diagnosis in my teens. I wouldn’t have become so depressed at my continually failing relationships and could perhaps have led a more settled life without the repeated running away to reinvent myself in a new place. I wouldn’t have lost my way so totally that suicide became a real option. I could have seen myself as someone with limitations rather than a total loser who gets it wrong EVERY time, a friendless misfit that no longer even tried to make friends. I identify with nearly all the statements above and scored 48 out of 50 on an online Asperger’s test. Why have more than 5 psychiatrists, more than 10 therapists and numerous hospital staff all failed to notice what to me, now I’ve heard of it, is so painfully obvious? Small wonder none of their 20+ drugs and countless hundreds of hours of therapy failed to ‘cure’ me, but that level of incompetence terrifies me! And the waste of resources is staggering. I’m going to try and get a proper diagnosis, but the 25 lost years where the implication (and belief) has been that I’m just a fk up…what of them?

    6. Elizabeth Kennett says:

      MY GOD! This describes my life! I am definitely talking with my doctor about this next appointment for a proper official diagnosis! I am 61, and I started practicing the Transcendental Meditation Technique as taught by His Late Holiness, the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, before my 20th birthday, and I think it accounts for a LOT of my functionality in the regular world.
      But I still think I will test out with Asperger’s.
      For all of you who cared enough to write, both article and comments, Thank You!

      • Liz says:

        I want to talk to my doctor about this. I just don’t know what to say. The actual words.. I just can’t come right out with I think I have Aspergers.

    7. Kimberley says:

      Hi

      I have a partner with Asperges. Can I ask if the following a sign of Asperges or would he have something else.

      He seems to look at his reflection in the window and gestures or talk silently to his reflection and if you look at him he acts shifty as to not let you notice.
      He also whispers as if talking to someone who is not there and last night in the pub when he mate some of my friends and they were telling jokes he just got up and walk away, he had his back to us and was laughing, as if someone said something funny but no one was there. It’s like he was having a conversation with an invisible person because I hear him say “ssssh”

      Is that a symptom of Asperges or would he have schizophrenia too? I don’t know how to bring the subject up to him in case he feels uncomfortable.

      • Kimberley says:

        Sorry for spelling mistakes

        • Nicole says:

          I know you commented a year ago so this is probably irrelevant or you wont see it but you should look up Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), thats the only autism diagnosis I know of that would fit with what you described but it could have nothing to do with autism at all.

        • Norman says:

          That’s Schizophrenia

      • Jam says:

        I think I have Aspergers, and I have a voice in my head that I have conversations with etc. like you describe in your comment. However, I know for a fact that this is NOT a symptom of Aspergers. I do not know what causes it, but I am not planning on getting mine checked out unless it begins to affect my life negatively.

      • Mary-Claire says:

        Hi there,

        I’ve just recently explored the possibility of being an ‘Aspie,’ and I have to say that your description of your partner’s looking at his reflection, gesturing/talking silently to his reflection very much fits my own quirk. To be clear, I’m not talking to voice that I ‘hear,’ but I imagine or re-live conversations with people or characters from books/movies. It is kind of embarrassing sometimes when my husband catches me and asks, “What are you doing?? Why are you whispering like that??” I’m not sure if that’s an Aspie characteristic or just a random behavior though. I definitely wouldn’t consider it to be schizophrenic tendencies though. Hope this helps!

      • Rose says:

        You’re describing traits of Schizophrenia. without a proper diagnosis, one can have a comorbidity of another disorder.

        • Kamala says:

          Not true. It’s actually quite common for Aspies to converse with themselves, to process things. Also, someone with an undiagnosed psychosis is unlikely to have enough insight to hide their behaviour.
          Finally, a symptom cannot accurately be slotted into a diagnosis without first knowing the reason behind it. Looking at the surface level without the underlying theme driving it is how autism gets misdiagnosed as [pretty much everything else].

      • Peter says:

        I have Aspergers but only was diagnosed recently, it has very far reaching and complex effects and people deal with it differently. I know these things might seem severe and “crazy”, but that’s only because of the cutural perception/depiction of them and because people generally don’t understand them. Just remember, as I’m sure you know, that he has lived his entire life separated to some degree from other people, his own mind is his world, and he was likely to have been literally alone/playing alone for much of his childhood. Talking or whispering to himself is just an aspect of Asperger’s unique to him, a product of being so alone in childhood and creating a fantasy world that runs parrallel to his normal life. Before diagnosis I was increasingly convinced that I was losing my mind or was crazy, when alone I would talk to myself almost like a conversation, but it’s not schizoid, it’s literally me talking to myself, and it’s very much to do with our obsessive nature. I too was in a long-term relationship until recently, and she didn’t know I had AS, I would hide all of these things from her and strive to be a “normal” and strong person for her, this caused me and us immense problems. After that it all came out and I would talk to myself, often it being repetitive phrases of a sometimes disturbing nature in reaction to memories or thoughts. I highly doubt that your partner has some serious other neurological issue, remember also that he’s so used to being different that he probably revels in it slightly as well, like I certainly do. I would often act out with other people and him laughing alone and ‘sssh’ing in the pub could just be this I wouldn’t take it too seriously, he’s probably just acting or performing in some way, or enjoying/fulfilling his assumed role as the odd/different one.
        The most important thing is that you find out from him, never be afraid to ask him these things, and try to do it in a way so that he KNOWS there’s no judgement from your end, and that assures him that you aren’t going to abandon him as a result, this is very important. It seems likely from his reaction that he’s hiding aspects of his inner journey (which is stranger, deeper and more lonely than you can imagine) from you, probably for these exact reasons, try to get him to explain things to you and be as open as you can with him, maybe tell him something that you keep hidden from even him (within limit of course), or do something else, because he probably hasn’t put all his trust in you just yet or opened up, and as long as he feels he has to hide things even from you he’s going to feel isolated and guilty as a result. He has to know that he can let his whole self out to you, literally whatever it is that comes out, because you might not like it. But if you find things out about him that you find distasteful, just remember that he wishes nobody any harm, he’s not capable of that, even if it seems horrific it’s something you can help him through, he’s a very obsessive person and whatever he’s hiding will just be obsessions that have taken hold because he had to hide them.

        In essence the most important thing I can say in response is yes, these things can absolutely be a result of having AS, it’s a very complex condition with varying results, and often characterized by a detachment from reality, these things seem to be a product of that. I obviously can’t say he doesn’t have other psychological issues or conditions, he may well do, but just having AS can certainly produce behaviours like these.

    8. Puppy says:

      Thank you for writing this!

      I never was physically bullied or anything… But I remember in second grade a “friend” tool advantage of my phobia of getting in trouble and forced me to do things using that as a threat for a year. I couldn’t leave, or I’d get in trouble. I tried to tell a teacher twice, and nothing changed. (I’ve never asked a teacher for help like that ever again. I’m too afraid to.) so I spent my life playing with this girl and dreading school. And then the next year she found a new toy and never spoke to me again, leaving me shyer, more anxious, friendless, and even less self-confident than I was before.

      Why did I just say all this?

    9. Emma says:

      Every one of these statements is me to a T.
      I use humour at work as a way of being accepted as normal. AND I’ve only just realised that from reading these statements.

    10. Lillian says:

      I feel like I’m going to cry because I get it now, I get why being “normal” is so difficult for me. I understand why conversations are so difficult, and for one of the first times in my life, there is a group of people who accept me as I am.

    11. Bethany says:

      Hi all, I’m hoping someone will reply to this! I have been reading a lot about asd lately as I have 2 sons under the paediatrician for a possible diagnosis. My husband is also seeking an adhd diagnosis and scores above average on the online aspergers tests. I can identify with a lot of the female traits, but not sure if this is down to a bit of social awkwardness and a religious upbringing. I score fairly low on the online tests – 18/200. I know these tests are geared towards males, but if I was an aspie would I score higher?

      • Noodle says:

        U sound like me!

      • Megpie71 says:

        In response to Bethany – my mother’s paternal family are Christadelphian (or in other words, they’ve been fundamentalist Christian since long before it was “cool”) and I’ve long suspected somewhere in the background there’s an intelligent Aspie ancestor who recognised fundamentalist religion was an excellent tool for interacting with the world while not being neurotypical (even if they’d never have used those words for it). On the one hand, all their particular weirdnesses can be blamed on their weird religious beliefs, explaining them to other people; on the other hand, the rigidity of fundamentalist life provides a set of rules and a control structure through which they can interact with a very confusing world. So your questions about religious upbringing may have the answer of “it’s a bit of both – or possibly a chicken and egg problem”.

        These days, I’m starting to come to the conclusion (at age 45) that I may well be Aspie myself. Certainly looking at the list above, I start going “check, check, check like whoa!” etc. Not sure how I feel about it at this point – on the one hand, there’s the whole obstacle of diagnosis and similar to be faced up to. On the other hand, at least it’s a more coherent framework for “what the blip is wrong with me” than anything else so far. (On the third hand, I know I have this tendency to grasp for identities and try to blend in with the people around me… which, on the fourth hand, is actually a pretty solid symptom for female Aspies anyway.)

    12. Rosemary says:

      I am about to turn 65, and have recently been diagnosed with Aspergers. I went through the above list, too, and all but 2 or 3 statements apply to me. There is both relief—there are others—and extreme grief over this reality. My parents knew: the therapist they sent me to as a child told them I had “mild autism,” but they chose to keep it a secret because they were afraid I would be labeled “retarded.” When my mother died she told me she thought all of my problems were because I was “a little autistic.” That was 3 years ago, and after yet another round of “why do these things always happen to me,” and family members getting angry because I never “act the way I am supposed to act,” I had to find out if what she said was true. Now I know. Now I can be myself, and stop trying to figure out what is wrong with me. This is a first step. I would really like to hear from others, as I just discovered you, and I am coming out of a shell, a lifetime of losses and misunderstandings. It has been especially difficult, I think, as a woman of my generation. There was a much greater stigma attached to autism, and the most severe cases were always held up as “typical.” I can only imagine what my parents thought. Their strategy was “deny, deny, deny,” thereby casting me into a life of chaos, confusion, pain and failure. I survived, if not thrived….and am exhausted from trying to fit in, at the very least! Thanks for listening, Rosemary

      • Catlover says:

        Dear Rosemary, I am 56 but undiagnosed, however have experienced all of the issues of an aspie. I am not sure what is worse, parents who knew but said nothing or parents who were completely ignorant to my issues. I have a professional role but my peers never get me a good luck card or leaving card when I move on. I have been told I am rude when I think I am being a bit assertive for once in my life. Life is extremely hard, trying to get it right all the time but never quite getting it right, however hard you try. Nobody cares about diagnosing you when you are an adult, they must just think, get over it.

    13. Kat C says:

      I have most of the symptoms listed above. I am still being bullied, my problem is my bullies are related to me. I am lucky right now that I have a good job that suits me. I have my own cubicle with a door, and it’s QUIET! I pray for all of those who work in noisy environments. I used to work in one and I almost had a nervous breakdown. I do find things humorous, but I don’t laugh like other people do. I have come to the point that when I’m not at work, I spend all my time in my apartment, if I’m not out shopping. I go shopping for what I absolutely need. I can’t stand crowds and I literally lose it in traffic. I can’t stand sitting in the same spot in a car and waiting half an hour to move forward. I have been raising a boy with autism for 26 years, and now that I’m getting older, my symptoms are becoming more pronounced.

    14. Nathaniel Verschuur says:

      I am a 31 year old male and I have lived my whole life in Geelong, Victoria in Australia. I believe more than 90% of the statements above are/were relevant to me in my life from school life to now. Just a few months ago I found out that I have traits of Aspergers. I am still coming to grips with it and looking for the right job that will suit me. I feel so relieved and to finding this page. Thank you.

    15. Sonja says:

      I’m a 14-years old Chinese girl who lives in Germany and is doing her A-levels in about one and a half year. Honestly, I’m stuck in between my not very blosseming social life, exams and studying and my own mind.
      I already did an assessment at a psychologist, but from what I saw it isn’t an assessment for Aspergers. I’m honestly scared, that the results won’t be the ones that will give me my answer, that will shatter everything about me. I can relate to almost everything on this list and from everything I’ve read, I can understand it really well, but I am scared that I “made myself into an Aspie” by researching and having a very strong interest in Psychology including Aspergers. I believe I was always like this, I’ve always felt different but I’m just so terrified that everything I did until now is just fake, that in the end I’m just someone who was overly obsessed and ridiculous over something.
      There is so much more I want to say and I want to have the confidence in saying that I am different, I want to give this a name, but just the thought of not being this makes me feel awful and empty.
      I’m sorry for this long rant, but I’m currently very desperate for at least one answer. I need this answer but too afraid to face it if it isn’t what I think it is… I’m so lost and don’t know what to do at all.

      • Josh says:

        Hi Sonja

        I’m feeling much the same as you. I’ve lived most of my life in ignorance or Aspergers and Autism until I became a support worker for an aspie a few years ago. It has changed my life as I’ve realised how aspie I am. I’m going to see a doctor tomorrow to start the process for a diagnosis, but I’m worried that I’ve constructed all this just to make me feel better about being a loner and an oddball who doesn’t really get on with anyone except other aspies and people with ‘mental health issues’. I’m very capable in lots of ways and I suspect they’ll just say ‘you’re perfectly normal, go away’.

        Anyway, regardless of how things go with your diagnosis, I’d recommend attending Autscape (google it) if you can. It’s held in the UK but people come from all over Europe. It’s a conference run once a year by autistic people for autistic people. I’ve been twice and felt very much at home.

        It’s interesting how important it is for some people to get the label. It’s important to me. Until now I’ve never cared much about labels, but I care about this one.

        Josh

    16. Shannon Nine says:

      Odd humor with deadpan delivery seems better suited to men, but it’s how I tell jokes. Weird extrapolations, feigned lack of understanding which is so often mistaken for real ignorance that I began exaggerating it just to mess with certain people who always tell me how much they underestimate me (yes, every time we hang out), failure to understand sarcasm, tendency to be assumed to be speaking sarcastically when I am being totally sincere and usually rather pleasant or kind. I like people, but they can really be exhausting…
      Thanks for writing this forum. I suddenly want to know ALL of you… and you wouldn’t even mistakenly think I was hitting on you, (which happens SO MUCH) bc you would understand. <3 It's fun to realize how funny other women like me actually are. I have felt so alone, in so many ways. Wait a minute… there are other women like me?! Fantastic!!

    17. Megan says:

      This makes SO much more sense than the other way!

    18. KSR says:

      Just reading this list made me burst into tears. I’m successful, have a daughter but have constantly had to manage myself in social situations, relationships have never lasted more than a few years (both my long term partners at times called me ‘autistic’ and eventually just got tired/frustrated with me). I’ve had obsessive interests as long as I can remember (memorised models, names and numbers of all the ships, names of actors and episodes etc in all the Star Trek series when I was 8-12). I have to shut myself away when I’ve been around people too long. I’ve been told I talk too much about ‘boring’ things, if I don’t catch myself I often echo noises I hear (like a beep of a phone). I used to lean on alcohol heavily when I was younger as it just made everything easier. Even as a 5/6/7 year old I remember having to go and hide after a while when there were lots of people on the house because I found it too overwhelming. I also really dislike physical contact from all but those closest to me and tense up if someone touches me.

      I don’t know if I’ll seek a diagnosis, but after all the reading I’ve been doing (yes, almost obsessively…) I think it’s likely I do have asperger’s. I think it was only after reading the comments on here that I realised how alone I’ve felt my whole life, the friends that I’ve managed to maintain have accepted my odder behaviours (like occasionally just not answering calls or texts because I’m overwhelmed, or when I’m excitably babbling on about something) but I don’t think anyone’s ever really understood my behaviour. Thank you for this site.

    19. Peggy J Bray says:

      I am 76 and have just begun to understand my whole life. It started when my 53 yr. old daughter told me I was very rude, had always been rude and was very good at being rude. It absolutely stunned me. I looked up unexplained rudeness and it led me to Aspergers. What an eye opener! I’m finding out I was not just born stupid which is what I always thought. I have learned to cope with most of the symptoms by now but evidently not the rudeness. My head has been swimming with all I am discovering. I have been making lists of mysteries I am clearing up. But she is not going to believe me. To her it will just be an excuse. A million things want to pour out of me in my newfound knowledge so I’ll just say “Thank You from the bottom of my heart for this website”. It’s the most complete and easy to understand one that I’ve found. PS This all happened within the past week and a half.

      • Peggy J Bray says:

        I forgot to say I live in the United States. I have been reading this site for days now and realize that most of you are in the United Kingdom plus a few other countries. Hope I am welcome. I really need this site. I haven’t seen any other posts from the US. I have read some terms I don’t understand like , a person is a “quiet” and I can’t remember the others. And if I say something odd, please know it isn’t intentional.

        • Leigh Forbes says:

          You are more than welcome on this site, Peggy. We emphasise our UK-focus because so many autism-related sites are based in the US! But we welcome everyone.

        • Rita whiteson says:

          Peggy. I live in the US. I am 46 and only recently figured it out too after wondering all my life why I’m different.

      • Delwyn says:

        At 69 i have just discovered i have aspergers. This has been quite a revelation for me as i now understand why i have been different all my life and not knowing why.

    20. Cathey says:

      Everywhere I went there was always something missing, but you nailed it right on the head … with just about everything in your post, but really on this one …

      “You are exhausted by always pretending to be normal, but fearful the Real You will be rejected.”

      I have been trying to explain that one, but it never comes out quite right and no one understands it … I am always fearful that the “real me” will come out.

      The thing that bothers me is that how can I be inconsiderate to them, when they don’t validate me … “Oh, I do that too.” or “most people do that.” I try to explain to them to think in terms of the movie 2012 or any world-ending type intensity and all I get is “what?”. I may look calm, but I am a volcano.

    21. Ana says:

      My mom has always thought I was on the spectrum, and I have realized that I fit the bill in a lot of ways. For example, I’m very literal, I stick to routines/rituals, I get very fired up about my passions, I have a hard time empathizing with some people (usually when they are very sensitive- I’m commonly called cold),my hearing is very sensitive, etc. I have very poor depth perception/body space awareness; walking down stairs makes me dizzy, and I frequently hit doorways and corners of furniture.

      However, some things don’t seem to match up. I am facially expressive and extremely perceptive of body language, conversation cues, etc. I absolutely need a lot of alone time to re-charge after being social, but I don’t actually struggle with socializing. I have always been “popular” and never bullied. People really like me, but I feel this is simply because I am confident (and even my confidence is not intentional, I just don’t see the point in not holding myself high. Even this seems kind of overly practical?) I do have intense anxiety, but not about social things- more about tasks that I rationally know I will accomplish well, but can’t seem to stop thinking about. It’s like my to-do list plays on a loop in my head. I also count letters in my head when I am worn out- if I hear, read, or speak a sentence or word I will not be able to stop dividing the number of letters by twos and threes (example: ex-am-pl-e, exa-mpl-e, a frustrating 7 letter word!) This is extremely frustrating, and I have noticed it happens more when I am tired or stressed.

      I’m confused because so many Asbergers symptoms feel right, as though they fit perfectly- but the ones that don’t fit, REALLY don’t. In the past I have considered that I may have OCD, and now I see how the symptoms that led me to that idea overlap with Asbergers. Anyone have insight?

      • Ruth says:

        I don’t have any insight to offer, but I wanted to say I identified a lot with your post. I seem to be very similar.

        My mother has often accused various things I do of “being a bit autistic”, such as sticking to rigid routine, being highly averse to change, avoiding eye contact. I’m asexual, and last year the only boyfriend I have ever had (I’m in my late 30s – the relationship started by way of a misunderstanding: at an event together, he thought I was flirting when in fact I had no such intention and never would have; later he started talking as if he seemed to think that we were going to have a relationship, much to my bafflement and wondering why he was saying these things; eventually he asked me out and I, thinking I would give it a try for once to see if I could manage to be normal, agreed – predictably it didn’t end well) also said he thought I was autistic for similar reasons and others.

        I resented being so called, until fairly recently when I found this site and others like it, and started to think that they might be right. I’m still puzzled and not sure though. So much seems to fit my experience: I have obsessive interests, and systematising talents (I’m a programmer). I stick to routine and get upset when it’s disturbed, and hate for anything to change from what I’m used to. I stim. I’m clumsy and uncoordinated and walk into things a lot. I’m socially awkward, hate crowds, don’t make friends easily, never really get emotionally close to anyone, and tend to lose contact with any friends that I have made when I move on from the phase of life in which I met them. And more.

        Other things don’t seem to fit though. I’ve taken all the online tests linked to from this site and on all of them I seem to score within the ASD range, BUT with the notable exception that I am very good at the ones involving reading people’s emotions from their faces and voices. On these, I actually apparently score above the neurotypical average, and I’m expressive myself. While I’m often rather literal, I also easily pick up on sarcasm and use it myself.

        So, yes, I’m confused too. As you say, so many things feel right, but the ones that don’t really don’t, and I don’t know what I am. So I’m also looking for insight, and strongly considering trying to get a professional opinion on the matter.

        • Thalia says:

          Yes, I feel exactly the same way! I wonder if there are different forms of AS, perhaps? The one where people have difficulty understanding non-verbal cues is the more common form, and that’s why we hear about it more, and the one we seem to have is the less common one.

          • Delwyn says:

            There are a lot of different symptoms of aspergers and it seems we don’t have all of them,only some,so it makes us all a bit different within the aspergers spectrum.

        • Kristi says:

          Some of the characteristics you’ve both mentioned are more common to men, which could explain the differences you see in yourselves. Read about female aspergers traits. Facial expressiveness are recognizing emotions are two that are different. The original characteristics were based on boys, but gender and age can present differently. http://www.help4aspergers.com/pb/wp_a58d4f6a/wp_a58d4f6a.html

      • Ruth says:

        I don’t have any insight to offer, but I wanted to say I identified a lot with your post. I seem to be very similar.

        My mother has often accused various things I do of “being a bit autistic”, such as sticking to rigid routine, being highly averse to change, avoiding eye contact. I’m asexual, and last year the only boyfriend I have ever had (I’m in my late 30s – the relationship started by way of a misunderstanding: at an event together, he thought I was flirting when in fact I had no such intention and never would have; later he started talking as if he seemed to think that we were going to have a relationship, much to my bafflement and wondering why he was saying these things; eventually he asked me out and I, thinking I would give it a try for once to see if I could manage to be normal, agreed – predictably it didn’t end well) also said he thought I was autistic for similar reasons and others.

        I resented being so called, until fairly recently when I found this site and others like it, and started to think that they might be right. I’m still puzzled and not sure though. So much seems to fit my experience: I have obsessive interests, and systematising talents (I’m a programmer). I stick to routine and get upset when it’s disturbed, and hate for anything to change from what I’m used to. I stim. I’m clumsy and uncoordinated and walk into things a lot. I’m socially awkward, hate crowds, don’t make friends easily, never really get emotionally close to anyone, and tend to lose contact with any friends that I have made when I move on from the phase of life in which I met them. And more.

        Other things don’t seem to fit though. I’ve taken all the online tests linked to from this site and on all of them I seem to score within the ASD range, BUT with the notable exception that I am very good at the ones involving reading people’s emotions from their faces and voices. On these, I actually apparently score above the neurotypical average, and I’m expressive myself. While I’m often rather literal, I also easily pick up on sarcasm and use it myself.

        So, yes, I’m confused too. As you say, so many things feel right, but the ones that don’t really don’t, and I don’t know what I am. So I’m also looking for insight, and strongly considering trying to get a professional opinion on the matter.

        (Sorry for duplicate post; picked an email address that wasn’t valid the first time and don’t know if it matters. Hopefully moderation will sort it out and show only one.)

      • K says:

        Just chiming in to say you sound like me and I’m struggling as well. Certain things fit: I feel weird and out of place, I can’t seem to make friends even though I try, and I find myself uninterested in the things my peers want to do. I have extreme social anxiety, feel like my skin is crawling when I’m around people I don’t know in a social situation, and obsess over things. At the same time, I can keep up a conversation, I understand humor and facial expressions, and I do suffer from OCD.

        I’m 24 and I want to know what’s up with me. I’m sick of being alone because I’m too weird, even though I try so hard to be normal and friendly.

        • Kerridwen says:

          Also chiming in to say I feel similar. So many things fit, but I understand most jokes, have been told I have a sense of humour.. I’ve also been told I’m eccentric, though, and I have trouble with many things listed, and fit in with things like wanting to be alone, disliking crowds, needing ‘time out’, sensitivity to certain stimuli..
          I’m a bit scared to seek a diagnosis in case I just crazy..

    22. Isobel says:

      I have a very high function form as Aspergers. So a lot of time I’m told I don’t seem like I have it. I may just be overly sensitive but I get really hurt when I hear that. Although I had been taking for regular tests as a kid I wasn’t officially diagnoses til I was 17. I didn’t really notice it much when I was younger but when I came into my early teens I began to feel more affected by it.

    23. Najiyah says:

      I have a spouse who display all the signs of (AS) but she refuses any help…
      She always flip the scrip and say I’m the one with the problem. I have an 8 year old son (not by her) that loves her but often times she is very cold and rude to him. In the past 2 and a half years we have tried to cop with her mood swings but some times it seems impossible.
      I’ve had to call the police several time to get her to calm down and one time I had to have her committed but since her release they will not tell me what they
      diagnosed. So what do I do?/

    24. Katelyn A says:

      I’m 14 (almost 15) and suspect I have Aspergers. I am right now not in school and have been seeing many doctors and therapists who have diagnosed me with anxiety, panic disorder, OCD, and ADD. I’ve come to the conclusion that I think I have Asperger’s syndrome. I’ve been researching for almost a year now and I fit perfectly with the diagnostic criteria. When I first suspected that I had it I told my mom who said no you don’t have it. She was very apprehensive to the idea that I may not be perfect, but now my anxiety level has peaked and I have no social life so I don’t know how she thinks I’m perfect now. I’ve been recently debating whether or not to bring it up again. I Know that this is the correct diagnosis for me but I’m nervous to bring it up. Should I? If I should how do I go about talking about it. I feel that if I get help now, I might be able to get better or at least gain more tips on fitting in, since I understand that Aspergers is a lifelong diagnosis. Please help!

      • Amber says:

        Try getting all the information for how each condition will affect the rest of you life. She may think that pills or time will make it all better.
        When you talk to her try to find a neutral social setting (yes I know that’s horrid for you but this is going to be equally horrid for her; your cornering her where she has to be quite and not storm off) early morning in a nearly empty coffee shop is a good example.
        Let her be frightened and irrational, let her know that you are frightened to.
        Mothers want their children to be normal, happy & successful. If you have one condition instead of many interacting ones you have much better odd. Also Asperger’s can be managed without recourse to medication that will make a huge difference. Tell her that you need her to think of where a diagnosis will leave you at 30 years old or her age.
        It is inevitably going to be easier to adapt to adult life if you have your diagnosis but your mother is predisposed to think of you as a little girl. She may have difficulty processing the impact of being a ‘shut in’ on you thinking, out of habit, that its just a phase. It is very hard for parents to accept that they need to see their children as young adults.
        I know I could have gotten my mum to listen and take me seriously if I lined up all the information for her and could answer her occasionally ridiculous questions. I had to turn it around and ask her how a boss would react to get her to think of me ‘the soon to be adult’ instead of ‘the little girl’.
        Good Luck

      • Madame_Psychosis says:

        Hi Katelyn,

        I identified with your post so strongly, I was moved to reply to you even though I see your post is a year old and I’ve never posted before even though I have been coming back to this site for some time. However, if your experience is anything like mine you are probably still floating around the internet looking for answers…After two years of researching Autism/Aspergers – triggered by taking a Spectrum test a friend had for coursework, kinda as a joke as there were a group of us all took it at the same time, I was convinced I have A/S and I made a list to go to my GP with. (Everyone else scored between 18 – 30, but my score was up in the 80s.) I built up the courage and tried to swallow my anxiety, and off I went to my GP. Whilst he didn’t exactly laugh in my face, his reaction was so horrible, I span off into depression, self-doubt, anxiety and self loathing on account of feeling like I’ve made it all up from internet research. But I took other tests and they all said the same. The research became an obsession, I had to find and take every test.

        Thing is, though all my mates were like ‘You don’t struggle in social situations! etc (you get it…)’ but to me, suddenly all the weird, clumsy, dumbass things I struggled with about myself – made sense! So I say ‘Yeah, I’m good at playing cool, but inside I’m screaming.’ Someone on here said something about handling parties as long as you can go lock yourself in the loo every now and then to ‘reset’ – this!

        I saw my GP 2 years ago. I have since done MORE research and am now referring to myself as self-diagnosed. To a VERY few select close friends, who have been really supportive. I want to tell my parents – perhaps my dad first…thing is I live a long distance from them, and I struggle with phone conversations as it is, esp if it’s talking about something I’m invested in – emotionally or otherwise – and I

        • Madame_Psychosis says:

          expect a similar reaction to your mum’s from them. Although I have been drip-feeding them former secrets about my mental health for a while in preparation, a lot of people are pretty ignorant about A/S still. Hey – if Drs don’t know about women being Aspies then…? :) I also don’t like the phone for various reasons – interrupting routine or focus on special interests (writing, photography, languages, architecture…) the dizzy, overwhelming pervasiveness of present day communications (text, mobile, landline, email, facebook, linked-in, whatsapp, viber…they’re all bleeping and I can’t handle any of it right now as I’m having a mini meltdown!!!) also body language and facial expressions and as if that wasn’t enough, I was also bullied out of a job by this nasty older woman (who hated me from day one and, among other hidden, heinous deeds, used to shout over me when I answered the phone ‘WHOISIT?LETMETALKTOTHEM?GIVE ME THE PHONE, I’LL TALK TO THEM’ before I could even ask who was on the other end).

          Just a few others I can think of: forgetting to eat!!(was just saying this yesterday to my mate)
          Hate crowds, strangers getting too close/touching etc
          I can look at a bunch of numbers, words, maps etc and memorise it, but if someone gives me verbal instructions, I panic and it just doesn’t stick in my head. I always write stuff down and I think it bugs people, but I’ve only recently noticed that.
          I’m also known for being a bit of a joker, but my humour is mostly word play, sarcasm and dry/black humour. When I tell a story etc and I’m enthusiastic (read -‘excited to bursting point), I go off on tangents, filling in details and back stories etc…until I’m at the point where I can’t remember why I was saying what I am saying!

          A bit like this 2 post rant…hahaha!
          But somehow I have the feeling you guys will understand my jumbled rumblings…

          Anyway, thanks to everyone on here – it’s exciting to know I’m not so alone, and possibly not crazy – yay! Katelyn – I really hope you found/find what you are looking for, and that you will find the strength, stubbornness, self-belief and perseverance I’m really grateful to just know you’re all out there, and somehow I feel like between us all, there is some kind of link, and in that, a certainty that this is the Real Me.

    25. b says:

      I’m 23 years old. And I was diagnosed (by a psychologist) with Asperger’s Syndrome when I was 19 or 20 years old.
      It describes my life, partially. For example: sometimes, I forget to eat (and do other things); I was bullied since elementary (it stopped during highschool or later); I don’t know what purpose will someone have to approach me (at least, I know of two in which those people weren’t looking for a friendship with me); I can’t tolerate certain things, like lying (and it costed me a friendship because the guy was only doing a prank); and I’m not very fond with parties (I went to a few parties when I was younger, and yes, younger; and, come to think of it, I didn’t feel comfortable with them and all that noise.)

    26. Alejandro Clausse says:

      Yes to all the symptoms. But also, at the same moment one answers some of the questions one thinks : “what? Is this not normal for everyone?”

      • Kathy O'Hara says:

        Yay, Alejandro Clausse!! Same here. Yes to symptoms but it seems to apply to a large proportion of people I know. Some of them, quite successful, others, pretty uninspiring but most fit somewhere in between. I would say that those completely OFF the spectrum are the minoritym

      • Amber says:

        I had to have someone explain to me what being normal is like.
        I told her to clear her afternoon and then brought her lunch and desert while we ‘talked’ so it would be rude for her to walk out.
        Then I interviewed her. I think this made her uncomfortable but even she noticed that it made me better at my ‘normal’ mask.
        It did get me to ask a GP for help though he has decided I’m depressed. Ironically my high depression/anxiety score was on a cheerful day. The pills I’m supposed to take just fog my head so I can’t think or count.
        These symptoms make a lot more sense and my normal friend did explain all the things I do that are ‘weird’ most of them are on that list.

    27. Colette says:

      Hey, I’ve bumped into your site before but have only recently started seriously thinking about this again. I mean, I think about all of my issues all of the time, but to be specific I’m thinking about Aspergers again. I really can’t let go of the idea of me just wanting it as a means to explain all of my short comings, so I’ve found it difficult to diagnose myself or be diagnosed.

      Er, this is a bit off topic. All I really wanted to say was that agree with all but a couple of these and those are the ones about being the last to laugh. I am usually the first to laugh and most people find me really funny. I learned early on that if you can make people laugh it avoids a lot of problems, so I’m rather witty. I don’t mean that arrogantly, just something I’ve noticed. On the other side, I often laugh inappropriately and people think I’m being mean when I just find it hard to take some things that we as humans stress about seriously. Even though when my little routines are disturbed I wouldn’t find it funny at all if someone laughed, I think.

      Anyway, I will continue to explore and post long-winded comments that could have been said in a sentence. Thanks for posting.

      • Jerry says:

        “have only recently started seriously thinking about this again. I mean, I think about all of my issues all of the time, but to be specific I’m thinking about Aspergers again. I really can’t let go of the idea of me just wanting it as a means to explain all of my short comings, so I’ve found it difficult to diagnose myself “, and ” I learned early on that if you can make people laugh it avoids a lot of problems, so I’m rather witty”.

        Very, very similar to my own experience (I learned to be funny at school as a way to fend off bullying, and to fit in better generally). I’ve been coming back to Asperger’s for the past few years as a possible explantion of my own 25 or 26 years of recurrent / chronic depression (I’m now 50) and am trying to get into the system for assessment.

        I’ve been on anti-depressants for almost 4 years now (but should have been a LOT earlier – I spent a very long time avoiding them for reasons that now seem a bit trivial) and they’ve been very helpful for treating what I think of as symptoms. But I know the cause is still out there (talking cures REALLY don’t work for me – tried a few times and always end up thinking it’s a navel-gazing waste of time) and increasingly suspect Aspergers.

    28. Tia says:

      Hiya,
      I am posting because my young son is in the process of being diagnosed with possible autism although it seems there is more than one ‘thing’ at play (according to speech therapist!).
      I’m reading these posts with interest because, after reading a lot about ASDs in the quest to understand my son I’m seriously thinking that my partner ticks many boxes for Aspergers although, there are many he doesn’t.

      I’ll list some of my partner’s traits here (this is very much from my perception though) and I’d really appreciate any feedback.
      *He rarely leaves the house – only to visit his parents. Our son is due to start school soon and the thought of having to take him has been worrying him for months!
      *If any of my friends visit (with the exception of one or two) he will go upstairs and have a shower
      *He’s very articulate but many of my friends think he’s rude/aloof as he will ignore them or only say the absolute bare minimum then turn his back and continue on his computer
      *He has some interests that literally, takes up most of his time. An online game he plays religiously, he will also spend hours watching online tutorials about said game in order to do it right. Painting intricate gaming models, and then forcing me to play the damn game!
      He can quote information from the Lord of the Rings books (names of characters, places, etc.) like some kind of walking, talking dictionary.
      *He’ll watch lots of films but if I ask about one he is absolutely rubbish at explaining the story but constantly says which actors play what. He thinks I’m a muppet for not knowing the actors names or what other films they are in!
      *He’s very paranoid and thinks people hate him. Over the years he has just dropped friends for reasons I can’t really work out.
      *He no longer works. Not because he is lazy or even dislikes physical work, it’s because of people he has to work with. He has suffered extreme anxiety in the past all because of his jobs (he’s had many but never lasts long). This links up with the paranoia that people ‘hate’ him.
      *If he has to go anywhere (e.g. hospital when I had our children, doctor’s waiting room, etc.), he’ll take a book and read it. He even asked me if it would weird for him to take a book to read whilst waiting when dropping our son at school!

      There are other things too but these are the ones at the forefront of my mind. He is the most annoying, selfish, arrogant man in the World sometimes!

      Any thoughts anyone?
      I’ll appreciate anyone’s input on this.

      Thanks.

      • Emanuel says:

        Sounds exactly like me. I was disagnosed with Aspergers at the age of 15, and in retrospect, it explained so much.

        For your situation, though: You’re a constant in his life, and the fact that he had a child with you (I assume) means you mean a lot to him, I think.

        When you say he’s arrogant and selfish sometimes, he probably doesn’t notice himself. Bear with him. Optionally, you can tell him when he’s being egoistical. People with Aspergers (me included) tend to snap out of it if they realize they’re being insufferable.

    29. Kathy Anon says:

      Yes to all the above! I feel more clueless than Alicia Silverstone in clueless. At least she had some understanding of other people. I feel more like an alien. Like the way everyone else thinks, I think the complete opposite. It’s insane.

      • Aimee says:

        I love your reference to Clueless. Not only was it how I felt but I used to use that film as a reference point for how to behave in school. I so wanted to be part of the fun but in practice, people were intolerant and I could never say or do the right thing. Occasionally Id strike it right, but Id still watch the film over and over in hope that Id one day be like that and not some awkward girl that never knows what to say.

    30. Mikkied says:

      I’m 42 and my husband was teasing me about having Aspergers. I had just been diagnosed with visual stress/Irlens Syndrome and he’d read that the two are often linked. This checklist was like reading a description of me. I have been the “weird one” for my whole life – I mean, I knew I was odd and that other people thought so but I didn’t know why. This is truly a light in the darkness. Thankyou so much. All I need to do now is decide if an official diagnosis will help me.

    31. Flummox says:

      This is like an “About Me” page. I may print it out and pass it out to my loved ones.

      • Anjella says:

        Exactly my thoughts! Every one had me nodding.

      • Snips2314 says:

        I was thinking the SAME thing!! I just told my boyfriend and some of the questions from another link on this site remind me of that first conversation. I think this will help him understand ME a little better :)

    32. William says:

      Leigh, thank you for flying the flag on “our” behalf, the invisibly-handicapped people who deserve a voice but still don’t have much of one.I don’t know whether to be comforted by, laugh or cry at so eloquent and comprehensive a description of who I am. Probably a bit of all three.

      Seeing my symptoms listed in stark detail on this blog has removed the last vestige of doubt from my self-diagnosis, made 18 months ago in my late fifties. I seem to have finally reached an understanding and tolerance, if not exactly a happy acceptance, of who I am. Thank you too for being the only person (as far as I know) to articulate the grieving for the lost me who might have been. I thought I was being pathetic and maudlin to indulge in such self-pity, crying over small things, emotions always raw and near the surface. It’s good to know I’m not the only one. Thank God I have a partner who understands.

      Here are some more things this condition has meant to me. Perhaps others will recognise some of them:
      The lifelong quest for that buried childhood trauma which must surely have happened to make me how I am, and which I always intended, once uncovered, to come to terms with and make a new start;
      A desperate longing just to be like everyone else, and the vague sense that this was not possible, but without the faintest idea why;
      A permanent state of confusion as to why am I like this, and why do I always seem to end up alienating my friends?;
      A terrible sense of exclusion from the warmth of society, shut out and alone forever;
      Fearful glimpses of the black pit of loss and despair, which I must instantly avert my eyes from because to see it full on will make continued existence unthinkable;
      The blunt, shocking discovery of the rainbow’s end, my pot of gold a heap of ashes and no hope for any cure, now or ever;
      Regrets for relationships that ended badly, one in particular that even now, many years on and happy with my loving partner, part of me still mourns;
      The depth of my emotional investment in animals, so easy to love and be loved by, and the devastation when one is lost;
      The duality of the uncontrolled idiot and the other me that observes it in silent contempt;
      The shrivelling and collapse in the face of verbal bullying;
      The number of times someone else has put it neatly and I’ve thought, yes that’s what I meant, why couldn’t I have said that?;
      Classical symphonies that play note for note inside my mind on demand, and sometimes when I don’t want them to;
      The social pretence that has become a way of life, with all the faked rituals when I’d rather just get straight to the point.

      There is no instant recognition of and allowance for this disability, as with a physically-handicapped person. Others see only a crass, boorish, rude or arrogant person who simply can’t be bothered to make the effort. They are olivious to your anguish, because to them you’re sailing blithely along, treading on toes all the way and not caring a damn. They have not the remotest idea how upsetting it is for you to upset other people. And the supreme irony of it? We can’t even all band together, because if we all met, we probably couldn’t stand each other for more than an hour or so.

      It’s taken a long time to convince myself that I’m not actually a loony. I am normal in a different way. I am normal for a person with Asperger Syndrome. It’s a bittersweet thought.

      Thanks again, and Hi and warm greetings to all the rest of you,

      William

      • Leonie says:

        William I am nearly in tears reading your list… especially the first point. That’s what I thought for months after I had self-diagnosed: what have I buried? What awful thing do I have to find? Now I know there is nothing there. Nothing to fear.
        Here’s my list (love how we all love lists) :)
        http://thiswholesoul.blogspot.com.au/2014/02/i-think-i-might-be-aspie-part-1.html

      • Agustina says:

        Hello,
        William I’m in tears right now. I thought I was the thoughtless and pathetic woman. I have been researching about this subject and the more I read the more I feel that I’m reading my life experiences.Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I greatly appreciate it.

      • Tracey says:

        Your post just made me cry i identified with it so much…..i just spent the morning writing this……
        After debating the matter for years and recently doing extensive research- go figure!
        I found myself asking do I have aspergers?
        I will list the reasons I think I do…..
        • It will finally explain EVERYTHING! How I have always felt ‘different’, never really fit in however hard I tried.
        • The awful social anxiety that sometimes nearly cripples me, how going out for a few hours can take me the rest of the day to recover.
        • How the thought of meeting new people fills me with fear.
        • How I try so damn hard but get so tired and sometimes want to stop existing.
        • How I now know that is NOT the same as wanting to commit suicide.
        • How I now realise what was going on last new years eve when the situation was so completely alien to me and I was almost mute with fear.
        • How I hated myself for the above.
        • How I’m so damn clumsy….ha I’m laid up in bed with a massive gash under my foot where I stood on the hoover!
        • How I used to think the explanation must be that there was some kind of awful abuse in my childhood that I’ve buried.
        • My memory is shocking, I barely remember my childhood or my children’s…so sad!
        • Over the years I’ve thought I must have depression, anxiety, SAD, hell the latest is that I must be going through early menopause or dementia- none of them really fit tho but hell there’s got to be some explanation for this!
        • Did I say I’m clumsy as f…!
        • James song ‘she’s a star’ is my song…..SHE’S BEEN IN DISGUISE FOR EVER!!!!
        • I’ve pretty much always hated myself.
        • And can’t see why anyone would like me.
        • I had bulimia for a good few years.
        • I have terribly low self esteem.
        • I’m particularly hard on myself and can be on others but if I upset someone it truly devastates me.
        • I can be very emotional.
        • I made myself stop writing lists years ago as I needed a list for everything.
        • Even spending time with close friends wears me out.
        • I’ve generally gone for men who had enough of their own problems so they wouldn’t look too closely at mine…then pushed them away before they saw through me….until now….
        • Which is probably why this has come to a head….cos I’m with a man who won’t let me hide away or fake, and is beginning to see through me which can be excruciating for me but I owe us both the truth. A man who can’t understand why I always need an answer or to know what we are doing, who knows I struggle in social situations and thinks I’m just walking chaos but seems to love me anyway!
        • Now I know why I hate too much noise, it’s just sensory overload.
        • I had my son tested for aspergers! Poor boy….even stating ‘hes’s so like me’ DENIAL!
        • I LOVE LOVE LOVE books, always have done, lose myself in them, takes my mind off me.
        • I’m often accused of being stuck up or aloof….NO I just find small talk really hard…How the hell do you know what to say! If I get to know you well I’m fine, but up to then I struggle.
        • I have only a handful of close friends, I find maintaining friendships hard because even people I love dearly I sometimes cant face seeing.
        • I barely know my brother’s families for the same reasons.
        • Besides why would they be bothered whether they see me or not.
        • I never knew why I found shopping so bloody tiring- that sensory overload again!
        • I can be obsessive but this has got less with age, over the years its been stamp collecting, competitions, baking. I can still spend a whole day researching something for no reason however.
        • I’m worried that THIS might be just another obsession.
        • I like order but can’t keep it up and pretty much live in chaos….this causes me lots of anxiety.
        • I can do my job pretty well….when things go to plan. I know the script and I work in a team of 2 so it’s manageable even though some days are exhausting.
        • I can procrastinate terribly but get lots done under pressure.
        • I hate injustice with a passion….Some of the things going on in the world make me cry.
        • Last week I was accused of sabotaging nights out…NO…I’m sorry I love going out with you I just get so worked up and stressed beforehand that I’m not myself and stupid stuff can come out of nowhere.
        • I rarely relax and have constant jaw ache.
        • I hate not getting an answer.
        • I have a constant battle going on in my head about whether I’m portraying myself as normal or not.
        • Drinking in social situations helps but I’ve done stupid stuff in drink which equals more self hate.
        • I try to be spontaneous but find it really hard.
        • Please don’t ring me!
        • I can sometimes look you in the eye but only cos I’ve trained myself well over the years. I can’t if I’m upset.
        • I can’t bear to be seen crying.
        • I need time to myself to re-charge, I recently took a 3 hour nap during a wedding day so I had enough energy to face the new set of people coming at night.
        • I have a degree but getting it was bloody hard, both the learning and the social aspects.
        • I frequently disappear on work nights out because I’m just so worn out and need my bed.
        • I love music but need to focus on it…a gig or through my headphones, I don’t need background music it just makes it harder to concentrate, likewise with the TV.
        • I’ve just realised why I had such a hard time at the festival last year- the crowds, no me time, all the noise!
        • I fail miserably at anything that requires me to be co-ordinated.
        • I struggle with instructions, even if written…pictures help…I like maps.
        • I feel unlovable most of the time.
        And the reasons I think I don’t….
        • I do spend time on my appearance, I never feel right though and strive to look good, at best I think I look ‘ok’ some days.
        • I don’t think I ‘stim, ‘flap’ or whatever!
        • I do have empathy, I need it for my job.
        • I can touch, but only people I feel close to.
        • I’m crap at maths.

        Thank you for sharing.

    33. Shari says:

      Thank you so much for sharing this information! This checklist in particular was very helpful! I have been spending most of my life trying to figure out why and how I am different, why I seemed to be such an easy target for bullying and struggling to fit in without making myself into someone that I no longer recognize! I am 35 years old and I finally may understand. I don’t mind the label, it’s just such a relief to know there may be a logical explanation! I have anxiety, never been treated, but nervous tics, skin picking, upset stomachs, etc. The talking fast so as to not lose the idea was a constant problem in my childhood, as well as several other items on the list above! Thank you again! Big sigh of relief. Now I have to get up enough nerve to try and face the doctor for a proper diagnosis!

    34. feli says:

      I’m 21 and get really anxious in social settings and am really shy even though I want people to like me. I’ve been like that all my life and was bullied mostly in a teased through my intire school life. I never had a lot of friends and I’ve only had one boyfriend so far and for a short period of time. I’ve improved socialy but I still am afraid that i’ll say a stupid thing again like i do always, and when i do i keep replaying it in my head over and over and i feel so embaraced. There was a period of a few months were i was so socialy anxious i feared of going out at all , i was so cautious about everything i even tried to breathe “right” . I didn’t tell anyone though because I wanted to seem “normal”. Sometimes I feel like i should act normal . People (mostly not intelligent people at all) say I’m dumb but I know that’s not the case. I ve just allways known I wasn’t socialy intelligent but other than that I’m quite smart (I also stydy math). I fail to see what other people see in the realy “cool” ones . I can identify to most of the stuff on the list but not the ones about organizing .. I’ve got the opposite problem i’m completly disorganised in a big level. So i guess I’m just socialy anxious and don’t have the ashbergers . Sory for writing the story of my life and for my poor english

      • feli says:

        My parents took me to a therapist a few times in my early childhood because i had no friends and wouldn’t talk to people and I remember telling her that sometimes I feel like everybody hates me. She then told my parents that I was crazy or something like that (that was her medical diagnose WTF??) . So I never wanted to go to a therapist in my adult life even though I know I need it and I need to know what is “wrong’ with me. I just think that if I start really learning myself pandora’s box will open..Does anyone get the same feeling or is it only me?

        • MIT says:

          Hi Feli, (here & Feb20)

          Aspergers is not only a spectrum condition it also seems to have a large element of “pick and mix” -not everyone has the same symptoms

          I can be very disorganised and I suspect that I have an element (or more) of Aspergers, but my symptoms seem more mild than yours.

          Aspergers is only recently “discovered” and it’s diagnosis is far from an exact science

          see
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asperger_syndrome
          & particularly
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diagnosis_of_Asperger_syndrome

          even the “Multiple sets of diagnostic criteria” :

          DSM-IV
          ICD-10
          Gillberg
          Szatmari

          are inconsistent so even an official “diagnosis” is more of an indication because an individual might be diagnosable under one set of diagnostic criteria and not another!

          There will be a lot of variation in people or “aspergics” because of variation in genetics and nurture/experience, and as every tree grows different also every neural network will grow different.
          It is actually unlikely that Aspergers is just one condition from one cause but is probably a set of conditions and attributes which the head-quacks have lumped together while they try to understand (and monetise) them.

          About 30% of people are shy. Anyone with social anxiety beyond basic shyness should consider the possibility of Aspergers, particularly if it is combined with social awkwardness etc.

          Is seems that Aspergers often presents in a very different way in males and females. I joke that masculinity is a mild form of autism (occasionally high functioning LOL).

          Traditionally diagnosis seems to have been based largely on the male presentation of the condition(s)

          For what it is worth you sound pretty aspie to me. You could look into it further and decide whether or not a diagnosis would be helpful.
          Which country are you in? In some countries a diagnosis will give you access to help you might need.

          Others may have experience or knowledge to correct or expand on this but as far as I know the treatment is the same whether it is social anxiety as a result of Aspergers or social anxiety from any other cause.
          The only treatment (for Aspergers or social anxiety) seems to be mitigation in the form of CBT (Cognitive behavioural therapy)

          If you wish to avoid ‘shrinks’ for the time being there is a lot of info available online on Aspergers and many self help books for social anxiety. We recently got our 12 year old daughter one:
          http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13230890-the-shyness-and-social-anxiety-workbook-for-teens#other_reviews

          This is written for kids/teens but could be useful for adults and probably contains the same CBT basis of other (or better?) books.
          ….any suggestions readers?

          We have a dilemma slightly similar to yours in that we are weighing up the pros and cons of having our daughter assessed for aspergers. I suspect that (like myself) she does not meet sufficient of the criteria to be diagnosed.

          Would it be prying to ask what you fear is in your “Pandora’s box”
          Aspergers should be seen as a gift as much as a disorder.
          For what it is worth my advice is that you are what you are and by the sound of it you should be pretty proud of yourself.

          My daughter is verging on gifted. My theory is that a good deal of normal brain is taken up by the operating system and particularly the “pre-installed social software”.
          If you can get buy on a slimmer installation of “social Lite” this frees up a load of brain for doing other (more important?) stuff.
          The chances are that you will never be great at social stuff or at fitting in so try a little bit, but do not try too hard.
          Trying too hard will just fill your brain and your consciousness with rubbish …. inefficient cack-handed code which will never run perfectly and will leave you anxious, exhausted, unhappy and unfulfilled, and maybe stop you enjoying yourself or achieving anything.

          Identify several things you are good at or enjoy and then indulge yourself. Work in them if they pay and join clubs if they don’t. When you are confident and interested in what you or the group are doing then the social stuff will happen more easily. If you are involved in “male” activities then you will be surrounded by men. If you want attention you probably don’t even need to be smiley and friendly (but it helps).
          The chances are that you are at your worst when you are anxious and at your best when you are confident and happy and busy, so find your comfort zones in things you enjoy. IMO here is nothing more attractive than an intelligent and capable woman. You will probably end up with a geeky guy but that is probably what you want.

          good luck in all you do :-)

        • JIMMY says:

          So feel like this feli. The breathing right etc, we seem to all have bits and pieces of the syndrome, I’m 57 and just found out about it. Seems like a whole life wasted now. Like no wonder my family shunned me and everything, Marriges that ended for some unknown reason. I have felt like this since about age 3 or 4 as I recall. Helps to understand at last I suppose. Wish I could have known sooner, it explains so much to me now. Like a magic box opening yes, at least I can see where I am now, just need to find where I fit perhaps,
          Kind regards and good luck.

      • tracie young says:

        my 17 year old daughter has all the symptoms except the not eating one, when she was 3years old i was approached by her nursery school teacher to say that i need to go to doctors because my daughter could not answer a simple question when asked,so off i went to be told by them that she has severe learning difficulties and was statemented at 4 years old. till now i didnt question them as i thought they knew best, but by reading those symptoms i will be going back to my doctors now to have her re tested thankyou so much for this website

      • Tripoli Carnahan says:

        No, no, I have a sister with all these who is completely diorganized!! Have liked this on facebook to her because she is diagnosed with add. I have all also except I am extremely organized, However lately I am struggling to even plan my day. I don’t know if that is age related or if I am in perpetual meltdown now. divorce, loss of marital home, loss of home purchased by myself, raped by husband, loss of all 3 parents moved 6 times rejected eventually socially on every job. health has deteriated . Still fighting!! Fight!!!

    35. Jenny says:

      Thank you for this list, it has been extremely helpful in trying to work out if I myself have Aspergers….my eldest son suffers severe anxiety, 2nd son was diagnosed with Aspergers a year ago with severe anxiety, my 3rd son is in the process of being diagnosed….he has a tic disorder and Aspergers traits….my level of anxiety is right up there at the moment…have suffered anxiety all my life.It all makes sense.Now I know why I get so stressed when a job is done differently to how I do it…eg hanging out the washing or doing the dishes.Just wish I could relax.

    36. Diane says:

      I am 62 years old and have suspected that I have Aspergers syndrom for several years now after I stumbled onto an article about it. Having never heard of it before I was astonished to see myself in the list of symptoms. I really thought that everyone felt like I did. The syndrom explains a lot about my life and mistakes that I have made. I have consulted two doctors about this and they both gave me a profound NO that I did. It have aspergers syndrom, but they don’t have the embodies that I do about how weird I can be. I am wondering now if I should see a professional counselor, tell my family or just let it go. Don’t want people to think that I am stranger than they already thought. Any thoughts?

    37. I’m 17 and starting to wonder if I should get tested for Asperger’s… I’ve never fitted in at school- throughout high school I’ve been through about five friendship groups alone (even my mum used to joke about how long I would stay friends with a group) and two rounds of therapy for high anxiety and depression. I’ve never felt like I fit in, constantly worry that I’m saying or doing the wrong thing and feel like I have to hide my real self from people. My parents have never been ones to believe in ‘labels’ and dismissed my concerns during my first round of therapy that I was autistic. But after having problems with my current friendship group it started to occur to me that I just don’t read signals from people very well and never know what the ‘socially acceptable’ thing to say is, so I started doing some research into Asperger’s and found that I fit a lot of the symptoms. Aside from the obvious social problems, I have to organise every bit of my life, I have a strict morning routine, I fidget a lot, have a love of routines, I also have hypersensitive taste buds so I’m an extremely fussy eater, have random interests that none of my friends seem to understand and I did extremely well on an official test for visual processing which is also apparently linked to asperger’s.

      So I guess what I’m trying to ask is should I get tested? I worry that if I did, the results would show nothing and I’d look a bit silly; I think I got tested for autism when I went through my first round of therapy but I’m pretty sure the psychiatrist put my problems down to depression rather than an actual problem that I had. But I did a few online tests and each time I got a score of 36, and they all said that only people with diagnosed Asperger’s get 32 and above- so is it really possible I have Asperger’s?

      • robbi f says:

        I am a 49 year old female and believe I have Asperger’s. Your post sounds like me at your age.I have a daughter almost your age diagnosed at around 9 years. I have always felt like I didn’t fit in.I had one best friend all through school that I learned to socialize through.Around 11th grade,she began to make more friends and distance herself from me. From that time on,I rarely had a good friend,and spent a lot of time alone. I believe if I had had a diagnosis and gotten help for anxiety and social skills,life would have been a lot different. I’ve been blessed with 2 wonderful daughters,and I have much to be thankful for. It’s only now,that my life past and present are beginning to make sense. The “weird” stuff I did that pushed people away,the looks I remember getting and not knowing why,being left out,living in my own mind on the “inside looking out” observing others and wondering how they managed to make it socially and what was I doing wrong,why didn’t I fit in? It’s all beginning to make sense and now I’m more free to move on and understand myself and appreciate the way God made me instead of always feeling like an outcast. I believe if you pursue this diagnosis and learn as much as you can,your life will begin to make sense in ways it never did before and free you to become the person you were created to be.God bless you.

    38. Yvonne McIndo says:

      This article sounds very much like me, except with the “forgetting to eat” – something that I do not do. I eat 4 meals a day.

    39. johnj says:

      The big majority of all this applies to me. I find myself in an uncomfortable position. I self diagnosed just a matter of a few days ago after taking a couple of tests online. (Reading a little of an article about a lady with Aspergers gave me the idea). I both want to be an Aspie, because it explains so much, and I don’t want to be an Aspie, because it is upsetting me some. Now I find myself looking at posts from other Aspies – or the above list – trying to find differences. This has happened to me before, years and years ago, about something not relevant here. The point is I know that I’m in denial, or trying to be. I can say that “no, i usually want the music turned up not down”. But music is the exception, I love rock music which is usually better loud. The flip side of the coin is that I often ask my wife to turn down the tv as it is physically painful. To her it is already at a low volume. It is much quieter than the volume I sometimes listen to music at. I don’t know how I tolerate it with music, I often have tinnitus after listening to a few albums. So you can see that the number of differences that I can find is being whittled away already.
      I’ve always been considered a loner, with awful social skills and real problems making and keeping friends. I’ve always believed myself to be a misfit. Now I worry I might not be Aspie enough while trying to convince myself that I’m not Aspie at all and of course every non-Aspie has done that. Haven’t they?
      I’ve tried so many times, especially when I was young, to be like other people that I lost whatever small understanding of myself that I had, with dangerous consequences. Most of my life has been subject to fear, anxiety, depression. Do I sound like a Aspie to you? I know I am but I’m desperately looking for a loophole.

      • julieanne says:

        I feel exactly like you at the moment. I’m 43. My son is 5. He has just been diagnosed with aspergers. I’m not sure how I feel or what to do next.

    40. Lynne says:

      I am also 52 and though I have no official diagnosis, all the “aspie” tests I took online confirm it. I can probably relate to at least 65% of this list.

    41. Jet says:

      Thanks you SO much for this list and for the “Think You Might Have Asperger’s Syndrome?” page. So reassuring and validating! I’ve only recently found myself on this path at age 52, but this list above fits me apart from two or three items.

      An old friend, similar age to myself told me this summer that she’s just been diagnosed as Aspie and then my nephew has a diagnosis of Sensory Processing Disorder (I do wish they’d change that ‘disorder’ word to ‘difference’ or something. These two happenings have given me cause to consider my own experiences. Very early days, but just hearing that I’m not alone is so lovely! Thank you!

    42. Sharon says:

      I’ve just discovered your website and I feel relived that I am not a bad mother after all. All this time I have thought her problems and issues were because of me and I’ve hated seeing her so unhappy and introvert. I found myself reading and agreeing with most of the symptoms as my daughter is like this. Tomorrow I am going to take her to our GP and discuss her being assessed for AS. Thank you so much for your posts they giive me hope that I can help my daughter and myself understand her issues with life and stop her from hating herself for being like she is.

    43. Christine says:

      You know, I didn’t realize until after we started talking about the possibility of my almost 6 year old son having Aspergers that I may have it too. I’m 45 years old. When I read the symptoms above I started crying thinking to myself, oh my God, this is me! On one hand I’m scared and sad realizing I will never be normal. On the other hand it confirms why I never seemed to fit in and act differently than others. I feel awful for my son. I so wanted him to have it easier than I did. I’m hoping with early treatment he will have a better chance at an easier life. I love him more than anything in this world and I’m his biggest advocate. Thank you
      for providing this information. Even though it is painful. I needed to know.

      • robbi f says:

        Keep after it,the early treatment for your son. My daughter was diagnosed at around 9 and has come so far. Use your experiences also to guide him.Remember,kids are resilient.You will be his best adviser because you can probably already relate to him where he is at. We are fortunate there is so much information out there that didn’t exist when we were growing up.I believe because of our own hardships growing up,we can use the wisdom we have gained ,now that our own lives and childhood finally make sense,to better help our own children.

    44. Jane M says:

      I also want to show this to my husband but I am afraid he will think I am just being silly. That’s the other problem, I have only discovered in myself because my daughter was diagnosed in July and through research I have found out that she is exactly like I was as a child but 40 years ago we were just ‘troubled kids’. I don’t want people to think I am a hypochondriac.

    45. Jane M says:

      All my life I have just wanted to “fit in”… Is this why I have always felt awkward and like a butterfly flitting around from one place to another?

    46. J says:

      Thank you for this – it is spookily accurate. I’ve suspected Asperger’s in myself for about 12 years but the medical definitions are quite abstract and hard to translate into real-life scenarios.

    47. Mollie says:

      Brilliant website. Thanks so much for all your posts. Have battled with depression, social awkwardness and numerous other issues all my life. I also come from a family where I was emotionally abused by my mother and physically abused by my brother so left home at 16 simply to escape the abuse. For years (and numerous counselling sessions) I thought that all my issues stemmed simply from my dysfunctional family however, the more I read about Asperger’s the more I identify with it. It also offers a logical explanation for not only my issues but also the behaviours of both my mother and brother. (I suspect that they too have Asperger’s). Guess I copped a double whammy :-) but figure if I have made it to my mid 40s (through developing numerous coping strategies) I’ll cope alright with a positive diagnosis. Will be seeing my GP on Monday to discuss – inspired in part by your website. Thanks once again and keep up the great work and posts.

      • Leigh Forbes says:

        Hi Mollie!
        I’m interested that you recognise AS in your mother and brother too – I too left home at 16 after emotional abuse from my (aspie) mother, so I totally understand where you’re coming from.

        How did you get on with seeing your GP? I hope it was a positive meeting. Please let us know!

        • Julia says:

          Hi Leigh,
          Thanks for sharing that with me (and apologies for delaaayed response). While it’s certainly not pleasant, it’s reassuring to know that I’m not alone with my past. Oh – and response from 2 GPS now (and 2 close friends) has been ‘no – you couldn’t have AS. You’re too confident’. Oh how well we learn how to hide what lies within :-) ! Keep in touch as it would be interesting to share our similar experiences – if that’s OK with you :-).

          Cheers

          Julia
          Cheers Julia

      • Jet says:

        Yeah, Mollie, although I don’t believe I was abused, I went through a time when I did consider it a possibility and my family does exhibit dysfunctionality, so like you, I always put my oddness down to what I experienced at home. I also suspect my mum may be Aspie too, so I wonder if part of my difference is also learned/conditioned behaviour.

    48. Steve Connor says:

      I’m what you might call a self-diagnosed aspie. I identify with all but one the points listed above.

      I get that absorbed in what I’m doing I forget to tidy up. So my house is a mess all the time. But that’s entropy for you.

    49. jen says:

      thank you for this list and the article i linked to it from. i have been struggling with whether i need to get a diagnosis or not. the meeting a new group of people item really hit me because this past weekend i went to a conference with a new group of people, it is so hard for me but i keep trying to find ‘my people’. this is so hard when you don’t know how to engage. i never introduce myself to anyone and am so thankful for the people that take that step with me. everytime i entered the main conference room i looked eagerly for one of those people who had reached out to me and if i couldn’t find one i sat by myself and tried to look normal, thinking again ‘this too is not my group’. my grandson was diagnosed as soon as he started school and it was through studying for him that i began to realize this is me too. we aren’t the same, he is much more outgoing than me, but i think part of that is because i am a woman and part is because i never understood that i was seeing the world differently than others. i used to wonder if him having a diagnosis and knowing about his differences would negatively effect him. now i wonder how different my life might have been if i had known as i muddled thru. thanks again for the great posts.

      • Leigh Forbes says:

        You’re welcome. Am really glad you can relate – the ‘my people’ thing was always a big issue for me. I could have written your comment!

    50. Ictus75 says:

      Yes, that is me, all too much me. A great post, especially for NTs to read. Thanks!

    51. Deb says:

      Fabulous post. I recognise quite a bit of me in that even though I am undiagnosed.

    52. Raiju says:

      Yeah I really need to scrape up the money to see somebody about this…

      EVERY. SINGLE. THING. ON. THIS. LIST. Though there are some I’ve improved on as I grew up, with a bit of work. High IQ ftw I guess? I analyze friggin everything so I’ve figured some of that social stuff out, at least with reading other people. Notsomuch with the getting it right when I try to do it myself. But I went through a period where I didn’t know when people were making fun of me… then somehow or another, I figured out that some people WERE making fun of me, so then I started to assume everyone was ALWAYS making fun of me… took a while for me to find a middle ground there. I still get in a total panic sometimes, though, wondering if people are just humoring me or something and they really just want me to go away.

      The more I read about this, the more it seems like me… usually when I start obsessively reading about some condition, it goes the opposite way and I can rule it out. But this… this is my life. My whole freaking life.

      • Leigh Forbes says:

        I can seriously relate to the ‘assuming everyone’s making fun of you’ thing, and how it comes from past experience. Yet people wonder why aspies are paranoid! I’m glad you’ve found a good balance; you’ve reminded me this is something I still need to work on! Thanks!

      • Jane M says:

        You sound JUST like me.

    53. Nat says:

      This is a great post! Most of it is very me and made me nod vigorously in recognition, but some parts are almost the opposite of my experience, mainly I think because I worked out a different coping mechanism in childhood.

      When I was 10 years old (and I remember the moment exactly) I realised that making people laugh helped me to fit in better than being serious and since then I’ve almost constantly added humour to everything I say. It’s extremely aspie humour full of wordplay and ludicrous extrapolations of the literal meanings of words, but it works and most people see me as amusing and fun.

      As such, I sort of have the opposite problem to ‘no sense of humour’ – people think that I’m extremely expressive and funny and think I must be joking when I miss sarcasm, fail to get a joke or ask what the unfamiliar idiom they’ve employed means.

      This isn’t helped by the fact that I long ago learned to bluff to fit in – the ‘laugh late and more loudly’ thing maybe, but I’m actually very adept at making the right noises to get past the bit of the conversation I didn’t understand – usually by changing the subject to talk about something else! I’ve been working a lot recently on no longer bluffing though, which has been an ‘interesting’ experience.

      As for ‘everything is organised. Or not!’, that made me grin because my home’s a bizarre mess of things that are highly, systematically organised surrounded by piles of rubbish and clutter :)

      I find it very different how different personalities and different ‘coping’ or ‘passing’ styles interact to make the same aspie experience different from person to person. We can have the same strengths and weaknesses but be almost the opposite of each other in some respects, while being so similar in others!

      Thanks again for an excellent thought provoking post! :)

      • Raiju says:

        ORGANIZED PILES! Yes, yesyes. I have them. Lots of them. I… ah… need to work on getting some of those piles actually organized again though, because I no longer know what’s in all of them. o.o That’s never a good sign.

      • Leigh Forbes says:

        Briliant comment, Nat, thanks! Actually, I can better relate to the “organised piles” being surrounded by clutter. Ahem.
        I envy your ability to make people laugh!

      • Audrey Simmons says:

        Thank you for posting this comment! My husband and I are going through the process of testing for Asperger’s Syndrome soon for him, and possibly for me, and this humor along with a specific kind of empathy that he has are reasons that I kept thinking, “Oh, maybe he doesn’t, after all,” but this sounds exactly like him. Maybe it’s harder for me to see because I often think his jokes are funny (other times they start to bother me), even if other people don’t get the humor at all.

      • MIT says:

        Interesting comment Nat.

        I too used humour as a survival strategy.

        With hindsight I probably used it too much and should have made more effort to learn how to tolerate eye contact.

        I went through the “Aspi perspective” and only about 10 of them I could identify reasonably strongly with, some were middling and 6 I disagreed with. I shall look at your other pages.

        Probably I am just a bit aspie.

        Can anyone recommend any good online Aspergers tests, also ones for females and young teens?

      • Pennyb says:

        This is me too! I turned myself into a comedy Queen to mask my inability to understand “normal people” This site makes me feel like I’ve found the truth, thanks so much

    54. Kyah says:

      This describes me to a T. I don’t have Aspergers diagnosis yet, but trying to get one. Thanks sharing.

      • Leigh Forbes says:

        You’re welcome :o)

        • Diannet says:

          My older brother has autism and lately I’ve been wondering if I also have some sort autism or asperger syndrome.Im from the US and I can relate with some of the things on this list. I’m really bad when it comes to talking to people and big crowds. I loath biG crowds ,loud unexpected noises, and bright light. I also have problems identifiyn my own emotions. and I also have problems maintaining and finding friends, but I think I’m doing better I have 2 at the moment. At the moment I’m seeing a psychologist for my depression but I don’t know if I should bring this up. I don’t know what to do.

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