Thirty-Seven: 10 Myths About Females With Asperger’s Syndrome

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Written by Aspergers Girls at Everyday Aspergers blog.  March 2012

Aspergers Girls holds a Masters Degree in Education. One of her sons has Aspergers Syndrome. And she has Aspergers Syndrome.

10 Myths About Females With Aspergers

1. Aspergers is Easy to Spot

Females with Aspergers are often superb actresses. They’ve either trained themselves how to behave in hopes of fitting in with others and/or they avoid social situations. Many grown women with Aspergers are able to blend into a group without notice.

2. Professionals Understand Aspergers

No two people are alike. Professionals have limited experience, if any experience, with females with Aspergers. Professionals have limited resources, limited prior instruction and education, and little support regarding the subject of Aspergers. Comorbid conditions with Aspergers are complex. Females seeking professional help are often overlooked, and sometimes belittled or misdiagnosed.

3. An Effective Diagnosis Tool Exists for Females with Aspergers

There is no blood or DNA test for Aspergers. No one knows what causes Aspergers or if Aspergers is actually a condition, and not just a way of looking at the world differently. The diagnostic tools, such as surveys, are based on male-dominant Aspergers’ traits that do not take into account how the female’s brain and the female’s role in society differs from the male experience. Diagnosis is largely based on relatives’ observations and individual case history, and is determined by professionals who often do not understand the female traits of the syndrome.

4. People with Aspergers Lack Empathy

Females with Aspergers usually have a great deal of empathy for animals, nature, and people.  A female’s (with Aspergers) specific facial features, body language, tone of voice, laughter, and word choice might result in an observer misjudging a female’s (with Aspergers) thoughts, feelings, and intentions. Women and girls with Aspergers are often deep philosophical thinkers, poets, and writers—all traits that require a sense of empathy. Females with Aspergers usually try very hard to relate another’s experience to their own experience, in hopes of gaining understanding.

5. People with Aspergers are Like a Television Character

Many individuals have learned not to compare an ethnic minority group to a character on television, because such comparison is a form of stereotyping and racism. However, people are comparing male fictional characters on television to females with Aspergers. This happens usually without intention to harm, but out of a desire to understand. People with Aspergers aren’t living in a sitcom. There is a need for a greater degree of understanding beyond observing an entertainer.

6. Aspergers is No Big Deal

People with Aspergers often face daily challenges. There is no magic pill to make an Aspergers brain think differently. People with Aspergers see the world in another way than the majority. Females with Aspergers are not different in a way that needs to be improved. They are different in a way that requires support, empathy, and understanding from the mainstream. Aspergers is a big deal. The diagnosis can bring varying degrees of grief, acceptance, depression, confusion, closure, and epiphany. Here are just a few of the conditions a female with Aspergers might experience: sensory difficulties, OCD, phobias, anxiety, fixations, intense fear, rapid-thinking, isolation, depression, low self-esteem, self-doubt, chronic fatigue, IBS, shame, confusion, trauma, abuse, bullying, and/or loss of relationships.

7. Aspergers Doesn’t Exist

Aspergers does exist. There is a subgroup of females all exhibiting and experiencing almost the exact same traits. If there is no Aspergers then something dynamic is happening to hundreds upon hundreds of women; this something, whatever one chooses to label the collection of traits, requires immediate evaluation, understanding, support, educational resources, and coping mechanisms.

8. There are More Males than Females with Aspergers

In regards to comparing females and males with Aspergers, just like our history textbooks, more males are in the spotlight than females. Males are typically the doctors, professionals, and researches of Aspergers—males that do not have Aspergers and who obviously aren’t females. Thousands of females with Aspergers remain undiagnosed. Hundreds of women are searching social networks and the Internet daily for answers, connection, and understanding about themselves and/or their daughters.

9. Females with Aspergers Don’t Make Good Friends

Females with Aspergers are all different. Just like everyone else, they have their quirks and idiosyncrasies.  Many females with Aspergers are known for their loyalty, honesty, hard work ethics, compassion, kindness, intelligence, empathy, creativity, and varied interests and knowledge base. Females with Aspergers, like anyone, have the capacity to make fantastic friends, coworkers, and spouses, if, and when, they are treated with respect, love, understanding, and compassion.

10. Aspergers isn’t Something that Affects My Life

More and more children are being diagnosed with Aspergers. Adult males and females are realizing they have the traits of Aspergers Syndrome. The rise in Aspergers is a financial strain on the educational system and medical system. There isn’t adequate information, support, and resources available to assist people with Aspergers and their families. There is probably someone in your local community who has Aspergers Syndrome. You can make a difference. Just share your knowledge and understanding. Pass on this list of myths or other resources.

 

Ten Traits of Females with Aspergers link

 

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Taken by Sam Craft