Question for those diagnosed with AS...

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sbcmetroguy
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13 Jan 2009, 3:03 pm

In about 3 weeks I have an appointment with a psychologist who specializes in the autistic spectrum. I am the type of person who wants to be fully-prepared for such an event, so I have decided to start making notes. Well, here's the thing... I find it much easier to type out my thoughts than to actually verbalize them, so my list of notes is now 11 pages long and is only going to get longer. Some of it is in list form, but mostly in paragraphs, divided by topic.

My question is, did anyone else here do anything like this, and what should I expect her to think of this? Something tells me she will not read the entire thing, and that perhaps I am wasting my time with this, but at the same time it makes me feel better to have all this stuff prepared. My medical doctor told me to make a list of things I want to discuss, but I know she didn't mean for me to create anything like this. When I am finished, I believe it will be in the 15-20 page range.

I went to see a psychiatrist a while back who basically blew off my thoughts about Asperger's and he upset me very much because he wouldn't listen, so I will never go back to him. But while trying to talk to him I was having such a hard time, I actually wish I had made such a list before that appointment.

Please tell me I am not crazy and that I am not the only person who has done that. And beyond that, I'd like to feel that the doctor isn't going to just take what I have typed out and just toss it aside. Obviously she will want to actually talk to me, which I understand, but I guess my typed document will just be my security blanket, of sorts.



Tahitiii
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13 Jan 2009, 3:15 pm

Same here. I'm doing the same thing.
I have no idea whether it will be worth anything or not.



sbcmetroguy
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13 Jan 2009, 3:29 pm

Tahitiii wrote:
Same here. I'm doing the same thing.
I have no idea whether it will be worth anything or not.


Well then I can draw one conclusion from your reply: I'm not alone in this! :) Thank you so much for making me feel better about this. :oops:

I'm on page 12 now, just going on and on about my special interests ranging from now all the way back as far as I can recall.



AmberEyes
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13 Jan 2009, 3:43 pm

Same here also.
I always try and take notes to the doctor's ready typed if possible.

That way nothing is omitted and less talking is involved.
They've always appreciated the notes.

I sometimes write down a script or set of bullet points before I phone important people up too.

I used to call it "being organised".

There's nothing wrong with being organised and trying to make life easier for others and yourself.
More organisation: less wasted energy.



ike
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13 Jan 2009, 3:59 pm

sbcmetroguy wrote:
Tahitiii wrote:
Same here. I'm doing the same thing.
I have no idea whether it will be worth anything or not.


Well then I can draw one conclusion from your reply: I'm not alone in this! :) Thank you so much for making me feel better about this. :oops:

I'm on page 12 now, just going on and on about my special interests ranging from now all the way back as far as I can recall.


I would expect them to interpret it actually as being rather affirmative of the kind of habits that AS people have. Though the diagnosis may ultimately depend more on things that might "rule out" an AS diagnosis -- areas where your habits might actually be very un-aspie-like. If you have habits or symptoms that make AS unlikely that may alter the diagnosis. But as in my case, the neurologist ruled out the possibility of schizophrenia, neurotoxicity (drugs), a variety of personality disorders, etc. Since I didn't have any symptoms that were contradictory to a diagnosis of AS after a full day of neurological testing, he said it seemed like a reasonable diagnosis (confirming my prior psychologists diagnosis).


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13 Jan 2009, 4:10 pm

I did this. My verbal skills are quite poor and my psychologist told me that my writings helped her a lot. Wrote many pages with both relevant and totally irrelevant information about myself. Always had trouble deciding what is relevant and what is not. I originally intended to make a simple list but ended up writing about 20 pages. Think that is typical for someone with Asperger syndrom.



marysson
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13 Jan 2009, 4:21 pm

It's funny to read this thread as I'm doing the exact same thing. :)



sbcmetroguy
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13 Jan 2009, 4:26 pm

You guys, this thread is making me feel so much better knowing that I'm not alone in this.

Thank you all.



Ambivalence
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13 Jan 2009, 4:29 pm

Heh. I've got an appointment with my GP tomorrow so I can ask for a referral to a specialist and I'm busy trying to write everything appropriate down just for that. I can say that when I wrote things down for mental health specialists before it wasn't wasted, it was useful both directly (they get a good summary of what you think) and indirectly (I got to put my thoughts in order just by writing it).


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zeichner
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13 Jan 2009, 4:50 pm

My evaluation is scheduled for the 29th & I'm up to 12 pages.

Some of it is taken from my posts on this forum. But to make sure that I haven't left out any important points, I am using the DSM-IV critera for AS & addressing each point with an explanation of how I think it pertains to me. Throughout, I'm trying to include anecdotes from both my childhood & current life. If necessary, I'm explaining how I have learned to disguise my AS tendencies.


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Andy_Megara
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13 Jan 2009, 5:07 pm

A few months ago I did the same thing (I wrote around 12 pages, and I am sure I would have written a lot more if I had had enough time). While I was being interviewed by the psycologist I took out the pages I had written, but I wasn't able to show them to the psycologist or to read them, I couldn't find the right moment to do that and I didn't want to appear weird. The next interview sesion I did't bring the pages to the consulting room. Unfortunately while I was being interviewed by the psycologist, I got really anxious and my mind went totally blank, and the worst of all was that at the crucial moments I couldn´t remember anything I had written on the pages, so my usual answers for the main questions were "I don't remember" or "I don't know" and sometimes I just said the first thing that came to my mind. This was really frustrating!! !!

I was diagnosed with PDD NOS, but I am sure I have asperger's syndrome.

Next time (with another psycologist)I will bring out my notes, no matter if I look weird. I don't want the same thing to happen again.



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13 Jan 2009, 5:41 pm

Hi sbcmetroguy, I did the same thing. I was told that this helped very much. The specialist who diagnosed me had me sit down, and he began reading my 10 -11 pages of notes. He would read a section, then talk to me a bit and ask a question or two, then read some more. It took him a half hour to get through them. Then, he talked to me awhile afterwards. He then took out two criteria checklists and went through those. One was the basic DSM-IV checklist, the other was a much more rigid checklist. I easily was determined to be Asperger's on both of those. He even suggested that under more evaluation, it might be determined that I could be high functioning autistic. He also said that many now consider HFA and AS to be roughly the same thing.

My notes were organized in small paragraphs arranged in chronological order up to the present time. I included my birth in it because I was delivered by emergency C-section due to the fact that my cord was wrapped around my neck and I had oxygen deprivation for 45 minutes. I was delivered blue.



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13 Jan 2009, 5:57 pm

I had an appointment with a Psychologist today to finish up on my assessment. I had six pages worth of notes on my developmental history, which she read herself and used as a guide to work around the discussion and questioning with me. She was fine with it, if not pleased that I'd taken the time to prepare myself.

It isn't uncommon for people with ASD's to prefer to communicate this way, not to mention we can have problems remembering everything we need to address, so I'd imagine your Psychologist would be fine with this and has probobly seen it plenty of times before. We seem to be notorious list makers!

By the way, your Psychiatrist sounds just like mine. ASDs are not within the field of Psychiatry, so many are reluctant to even discuss Asperger's. Which is a pity not only for potential AS individuals in their care, but for the clinician in question. You wuld think more would be interested in it, from a professional stand point if not for the patient. I experienced the same thing from my shrink before finding a Psychologist who specialised in ASDs.


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13 Jan 2009, 6:13 pm

sbcmetroguy wrote:
In about 3 weeks I have an appointment with a psychologist who specializes in the autistic spectrum. I am the type of person who wants to be fully-prepared for such an event, so I have decided to start making notes. Well, here's the thing... I find it much easier to type out my thoughts than to actually verbalize them, so my list of notes is now 11 pages long and is only going to get longer. Some of it is in list form, but mostly in paragraphs, divided by topic.

My question is, did anyone else here do anything like this, and what should I expect her to think of this? Something tells me she will not read the entire thing, and that perhaps I am wasting my time with this, but at the same time it makes me feel better to have all this stuff prepared. My medical doctor told me to make a list of things I want to discuss, but I know she didn't mean for me to create anything like this. When I am finished, I believe it will be in the 15-20 page range.

I went to see a psychiatrist a while back who basically blew off my thoughts about Asperger's and he upset me very much because he wouldn't listen, so I will never go back to him. But while trying to talk to him I was having such a hard time, I actually wish I had made such a list before that appointment.

Please tell me I am not crazy and that I am not the only person who has done that. And beyond that, I'd like to feel that the doctor isn't going to just take what I have typed out and just toss it aside. Obviously she will want to actually talk to me, which I understand, but I guess my typed document will just be my security blanket, of sorts.


That's a lot of pages! I just wrote a list of possible symptoms then I wrote 2-3 pages with more background history. It was all in point form.



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13 Jan 2009, 6:24 pm

To this day I don't know how much of my papers got read. I gave the shrink a copy to keep and she said she would read it later. She must have read some, because in other sessions, she asked me to clarify a couple of things.


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glider18
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14 Jan 2009, 10:17 am

I feel fortunate that my therapist, the one who diagnosed me, read my entire set of notes. He did it in front of me. He keeps it in a file now. In the previous two sessions he has always made comments back on things I wrote in those notes. If I talk about something that happened to be in those notes, he will even comment how interesting he found that to be in my notes. I truly believe he cares about me. On the day of my diagnosis, I even gave him two poems I had written. Both of those poems address feeling I had as a child about being autistic. Now, in the therapy sessions, as my family is coming with me, he keeps charts of our interactions. Our agreement is that he is in now way trying to cure me (as there is no cure), but that he is trying to help me with issues dealing with socializing with my family. I feel good about things so far. It really helps the therapy if you know that the person cares about you.