Aspergers Letter: Be the Change

Dear Sir or Madam,

Thank you for taking the time to read these words.  Please know you are making a difference. My penname is Samantha Craft. I am an educator (M.Ed.) and a mother, and I have Asperger’s Syndrome. I live in the state of Washington in the United States. I am forty-three years of age. I was first identified with having Aspergers in December of 2011 by a mental health practitioner.

Before I knew I had Aspergers, I spent decades searching for answers. I searched for logical reasons to explain my extreme sensitivities, empathy, fixations, imaginings and fears.  A keen woman, I sought out answers through 12-Step, medical doctors, therapists, psychologist, psychiatrists, priests, ministers, educators, shamans, and counselors. Not one person whom I sought out for assistance mentioned Aspergers, because not one person knew how a female with Aspergers presented herself. Many professionals didn’t even know this word: Aspergers.  Person after person assigned me an incorrect or incomplete diagnosis and non-beneficial methods of treatment. For years I suffered, knowing something was “wrong,” but not understanding why.

I am not alone. By no means am I alone. Thousands upon thousands of women have Aspergers and have been misdiagnosed, overlooked, and/or misunderstood. Notably, In these days of advanced technology, this lack of awareness regarding Aspergers is shifting. Today, thousands of people a month are learning how Aspergers in females presents itself. However, a large majority of the people searching for answers are the females with Aspergers themselves and their family members. The word about the female experience still needs to reach the people who are equipped to identify and help this subgroup of women. Particularly professors at universities, teachers in elementary and secondary schools, medical doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, and mental health care practitioners.

In hopes of spreading awareness, in February of 2012, I began a blog called Everyday Aspergers. I have since been writing for 95 days straight, and will continue to do so for the stretch of the year. My hope is  to present a cohesive presentation illustrating a female with Aspergers. The pages are not filled with troubles and tears, only some: because I am human and my human experience stretches far beyond the one word Aspergers. The pages depict the inner workings of a female with an Asperger’s mind—her thought processes, her deep philosophical prose, her poetry, her story.

My hope is you will choose to pass this link on to a professional, (e.g., grandson’s teacher, sister’s doctor, colleague, university dean), so the many women still searching for assistance and answers regarding Aspergers will have a tomorrow filled with awareness, understanding, assistance, and acceptance. Assistance cannot exist without knowledge. Acceptance cannot exist without knowledge. In choosing to directly send this link to one professional, you are choosing to spread the knowledge and effectively change the lives of thousands of women.

With the knowledge we will forever change the face of Aspergers, with the knowledge Aspergers will no longer be unknown, misunderstood, and/or perceived as a taboo, and with the knowledge we can begin to provide hope and needed assistance, and begin to celebrate our unique gifts, I sincerely thank you. May your day be filled with peace.

Link to pass on:  https://aspergersgirls.wordpress.com/2012/05/03/aspergers-letter-be-the-change/

Sincerely,

Samantha Craft

Everyday Aspergers

 

You may also print Be the Change letter, if all the information remains on the page. Thank you.

 

Resources on this blog:

10 Traits of Females with Aspergers:

https://aspergersgirls.wordpress.com/2012/02/10/aspergers-traits-women-females-girls/

Unofficial Checklist for Females with Aspergers

https://aspergersgirls.wordpress.com/2012/03/31/day-62-females-with-aspergers-syndrome-nonofficial-checklist/

10 Myths about Females with Aspergers

https://aspergersgirls.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/thirty-seven-10-myths-about-females-with-aspergers-syndrome/

Discrimination regarding Aspergers

https://aspergersgirls.wordpress.com/2012/03/13/day-44-the-abcs-of-discrimination-i-will-not-be-made-to-feel-ashamed-of-aspergers/

Advertisements

23 thoughts on “Aspergers Letter: Be the Change

    1. Thank you. I have wonderful moments all the time. I am at peace with who I am. I love me. I struggle with challenges like everyone else does. 🙂 I hope the same (more good) for you and yours.

  1. Just watching you chronicle these events really makes me wonder about the way I have coasted through certain things…Even when you aren’t writing poetry, I still find your posts very poetic at heart

    1. I like that “poetic at heart” part very much. I try to write in a soothing and healing rhythm; I appreciate you picking up on that.
      Curious to know more about what you mean by ‘coasted through certain things.’ Though I have an inkling. 😉
      Love and Light, Sammy

  2. Thank you for this, Sam 🙂 🙂 I found out about my own “Aspie-ness” in December of 2011…the only difference between you and I is that I “discovered” this on my own…I self-diagnosed, in other words…I am thankful for you because I have gained more knowledge about this syndrome through reading your blogs…I am glad that I am not alone…for a while, I was almost convinced that I was going crazy…lol…I will advocate for us females with Asperger’s any time of day…I want every girl out there with Asperger’s to know that they are not alone…I feel for them…I feel for all the intelligent girls who are misunderstood…I feel for parents who are uninformed that their daughter is not weird but really a gifted individual who needs to be pointed/helped in the right direction…I believe that we (Aspies/people with autism) can make a difference in this world…thank you for what you do, Sam 🙂 🙂 {{{{hugssss}}}}

  3. Sam, I would love to hear your thoughts on the new changes to the DSM. With Asperger’s being dropped as a distinct diagnosis, I fear many more women will continue to suffer in silence. It is much harder to meet the criteria for “autism” as an adult (as opposed to Asperger’s) because many of us Aspie’s (particularly, us ladies) have learned adequate adaptations to get by and can appear typical for hours or days at a time. While I have decided to not seek a formal diagnosis, I wonder about all the women who are seeking help and understand from doctors and specialists who will no longer be able to give them the right diagnosis because of the new changes coming. I fear so many more women will be lost and go many more years thinking they are alone or “crazy” because it’s been more difficult for them. There are differences in the way an Aspie girl and an autistic girl develops. I see it in my own daughter, who has ASD. We understand each other so well, but there are certain issues that she has had in her short years that I have never had. I just wish doctors and specialists could understand these fundamental differences and be more willing to really look at female’s with Asperger’s. They would see so many more of us if they really took the time to look.

    1. I have known about the possible DSM change for a long time, and agree with you that it will likely make more woman have a harder time seeking assistance. I believe that the word can spread about Aspergers traits and more and more women can be helped; that is the primary reason I continued with this blog. We can make a difference; I strongly believe this. I also think that once we connect and have the comfort and love of one another’s company, we can ease a lot of the challenges commonly found in women’s lives who have Asperger’s or many Asperger’s traits. I don’t think diagnosis is the key….as the diagnosis doesn’t provide help itself…what provides help is education, finding a common group of people, and discovering coping mechanisms. There isn’t a lot of resources out there once people have a diagnosis….so creating these communities and creating available information is the key. I try not to let fear or anger into my life anymore. I still battle with fear in regards to sickness/death, but other than that, I’ve been able to release most fear. So I don’t fear the implications; I trust that this change will not stop us from connecting, but perhaps even inspire us to reach out and connect more. In regards to children, getting a diagnosis is vital for support at school; this is the one area I hope will not be affected by the DSM changes. I also know from research that the DSM is largely funded by the drug companies…. so I don’t really have a lot of faith in their changes. Before there were two sides, two colleges, one that thought Aspergers was autism, and one that thought it was not. I often wonder what happened to this arguement….why all the sudden, when there is no diagnostic test to prove Aspergers, it is being lumped in with ASD. Though I realize that Aspergers itself is not a money maker…. Okay… I think I processed enough. lol. Great query. xo Sam

  4. Hi Sam,
    I wanted to personally thank you for writing this blog … now I think I know what is finally wrong with me. Today I have read many of your posts, and the things you describe have been so accurate (like 98% of it applies). I am an 11th grader in high school and my parents have had me in counselling, and made take so many evaluations over the past two years. I have been diagnosed with depression and anxiety, but none of the therapy seems to work, and my parents, therapists and even teachers (who are honestly more supportive to me than anyone else) just think I am being uncooperative, but I really did try. It hurts that my teachers (who apart from my dog are my only friends) think that, but I really am trying. I have spent so many hours online trying to figure out why I was such a “freak,” but now I know I am not alone! Thank you! I now know from your blog that there is nothing “wrong,” (at least in the way I thought I was before) with me, but I am so tired of feeling like this. how is one who had asburgers supposed to deal with this? is it just something i have to deal with?

    1. You are most welcome 🙂 Just now finding your kind comment. ❤ Best wishes to you. I would suggest finding an online support group or local one in your community. I have one listed under the about author page. 🙂

  5. Oh heavens yes! Thank you so much for writing this! It’s so desperately needed in this world. Especially considering the ignorance of the average professional, the very people we rely upon for diagnosis and ongoing support.

    Dear friend, you’re absolutely right; you are by no means alone. I could have written that entire letter (well, you did it much better than I could have; I guess what I mean is that it resonates with me that much, eloquently expressing what I think and feel). 😊

    I love your book and I love your writing! I read it out loud to my legally blind partner, too, and he enjoyed it as well. I think he achieved a deeper understanding of our experience and our world. You’ve got a lifetime fan here ❤️

    Cheers!
    ~The Silent Wave Blog writer 😊

Thank you for your comments :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s