Living with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (Asperger's Disorder) as an adult female.

Helping hands.

Helping hands.

In October, 2014, I began the process of searching for a new therapist and a case-worker. My last therapist quit unexpectedly and the place I went informed me that they could no longer serve clients outside of county.

I had been praying for guidance, and one night in late October, 2014, I sensed God leading me to the website of another place. Though I had been turned down by this place because it is also out of county, I pressed on in faith and contacted them. It turns out that they had expanded their services and could now take clients outside of county.

After filling out paperwork that they e-mailed to me and 4 months of waiting, I was able to come in for a psychiatric evaluation. I then came back a short time later for my final evaluation and in April, 2015, began seeing my current therapist. I was also assigned a psychiatrist. I am able to meet in a quiet setting free of auditory distractions.

This place accepts Medicare/Medicaid, which is what I need as I can’t work to buy insurance.

My experience has been a positive one so far.

My therapist helped me get the ball rolling on obtaining a case-worker after several inquires I made to social service agencies failed, mainly due to the I.Q. barrier (I can’t be served due to my I.Q. being above 70).

First, she called my local Dept. of Human Services (DHS). She then called a place called AID ( the Association for Individual Development) and was able to get me in to be seen. More paperwork followed and then an interview. My experience with the intake person was very positive. We met in a quiet place, away from auditory distractions.

When I received a callback, I received the troublesome news that I couldn’t receive services from AID solely for having Asperger’s Disorder. It isn’t covered under their coverage code (section 131). However, the intake person didn’t give up on me. She told me we should approach this from a symptomatic view. In other words, the meltdowns that result in sensory overload maintaining safety for myself and others when out in public; having a help person to help me navigate these issues. I was approved a few weeks later. By now, it was June, 2015.

In August, I met with my caseworker for the 1st time. My sister was present at my request. We discussed what I hoped to get out of having a caseworker; taking me walking so I can stay healthy, watching a movie, beading with me and offering me some company. She also can navigate looking into any other services I need.

So far, so good. A review for AID will be done in December to see how much progress I am making.I have stated that my case is one of maintenance vs. recovery and rehabilitation. Waiting was the hardest part. I prayed my way through and know God is always with me.

It’s wonderful to know that many social services agencies have e-mail contact. I have auditory processing disorder, so this is a godsend. My sister helped me to handle what my therapist and e-mail could not do. It is important to have someone who can speak for you when you are unable. Someone you trust will convey your words, not theirs.

State of Illinois DHS web page:

A blessed Thanksgiving and Holiday Season to all.

Royalty free image from Shutterstock.

Royalty free image from Shutterstock.

According to CNN and The New York Times, another man with Asperger’s Syndrome with an unhealthy maternal relationship has turned to deadly gun violence, again.

I won’t speculate further about the shooter or his mother.What I will say is that I do have Asperger’s Syndrome (or Disorder) as well as generalized anxiety disorder and OCD. I have  migraines (but fewer than 14 a month). I have to be on a costly birth control pill (though not sexually active) as I have hormonal imbalance and used to have PMS with severe, depressed episodes and sometimes, violent behavior. This type of PMS is called Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder.

I will tell you that I agree individuals with present mental health issues or severe impulse control issues stemming from any disorder should not be allowed to have guns, myself included. This will not solve gun violence, but I believe it is one step that would help to decrease it. One in many various steps.

I can tell you that even with being on the “dummy pills” which actually have hormone in them, that my last PMS cycle last month caused hypersensitivity emotionally and caused me to hear hostility and judgement in everyone’s words as well as having tearful episodes over minor things or major, like depressing world events in the news. This caused much anger that lead to me venting by drawing angry cartoons that I could show my therapist as my way of coping.

I don’t think I should have access to a gun. If I was to go and apply for a weapon of any type, there should be an application and background check that would enable the seller to access my mental health records. A doctor, such as my psychiatrist should be able to inform the seller that I have a disorder making judging and impulse control a very poor reason for owning a gun.

Asperger’s doesn’t inherently make a person violent. I have not ever felt the urge to kill or harm a person for no reason at all. Having AS doesn’t mean I am a sociopath.

It does mean, that when facing sensory overload, I can become violent without premeditation, and harm myself and/or others. I have made the decision, after some very painful and frightening experiences, to have a help person with me when I am out on public. I take my meds and tell my doctor if they aren’t working. I am always asked by my psychiatrist how my meds are working.

I also feel strongly that people on and off the autistic spectrum need to stop saying that having autism/Asperger’s is just a way of thinking differently. That is a gross understatement and only hurts me. A very real part of me is left out.

I also don’t need the added societal pressure, either with AS or NT, to go out and live independently without any support, working a 9 to 5 job and living among small children and dogs. My late mother had a very good idea: dedicate an apartment complex laid out like a residential college campus (no pun intended in light of last week’s shooting). Offer 24-7 medical and social supports. Have work for those who can work full or part time without the sensory overload of a job in the real world for those who have tried and found it excruciatingly painful and dangerous. A sensory haven for those who have had all available medical treatments and interventions and need a safe place to live-without children or dogs solely as pets. And make either all or part of it eligible for Section 8 or Section 42.This would make living outside a group home or mental institution a reality for people like me.

A potentially deadly school shooting was thwarted in California after students actually REPORTED it after overhearing the plans by the would be killers.

Think before posting anything and stay off of social media if you are feeling unstable. If you are a parent, take the computer or phone away. It pays to be uncool sometimes. My mom would tell you that if she were still here. In post Columbine High times, I guess we all have to be snitches and watch what we say and post ourselves. And as I said earlier, people with present mental health issues and impulse control issues going along with the autism spectrum should not have access to guns of any kind.

Unless someone is on the SWAT team or part of the military, they shouldn’t have access to the AK type of guns that kill a big amount of people in a short amount of time.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure this out as I am not a genius, but money doesn’t talk in this country, it shouts and gets politicians elected to office.

I don’t apologize for posting this. I do recognize that the individual reading this may believe differently or be upset. Know, please, that it isn’t my intent to cause you personal pain (though I’m sure I will, as a secondary effect).

Let us pray for the family of the victims (including the killer’s), for our elected officials and for common sense among ourselves. Also, let’s pray for states, counties and communities who actually invest in their adult autistic population.


Executive Function

Executive Function.

Originally posted on goddess0510:


“We all have problems.The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown


Sometimes I find myself looking at friends and family with wonder because I find most of the time people tend to make themselves really unhappy by focusing on the negatives that they have in their lives. I also find myself unconsciously pointing out all the positives they have in their lives and people look at me horrified like I’m cold. I’m not cold but maybe I could be accused of being too blunt sometimes but never cold or uncaring.
If people were willing enough to admit it, they would say honestly that their lives are not in constant turmoil. There is no way bad things are always happening to people. I find that it tends to be a specific period of time where everything is negative. In this I will try to list what I…

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Pro Ears To The Rescue! I have hyper acute hearing meaning that my brain doesn't process sound correctly. I also have autism spectrum disorder. These help me bear going outside my home and the 4th of July inside my home.

Pro Ears To The Rescue! I have hyper acute hearing meaning that my brain doesn’t process sound correctly. I also have autism spectrum disorder. These help me bear going outside my home and the 4th of July inside my home.

I Googled the keywords “surviving the 4th of July autism” and got links to articles regarding how to help kids with autism manage the municipal shows; the ones that are advertised ahead of time that people can prepare for. Not surprisingly, I found nothing on how individuals with ASD can manage the unexpected M80s the neighbors set off any time day or night. Since I appear once again to be a pioneer in the field of adult autism and managing sensory issues, I will share my experience with handling the unexpected fireworks.

The startle (moro) reflex is more intense in autistic individuals. This has manifested itself with me in the area of intense, violent meltdowns that have lead many times to police and hospital intervention. As a newer orphan on the spectrum, I find myself having to be more self reliant if I am going to survive autism at all.

I understand that some with ASD view their condition as a blessing or a mixed blessing. The latter would be true of how I self-identify, though not evenly.

First of all, I recommend getting earplugs and/or headphones AHEAD OF TIME. I use either one or a combination of both depending on the amount and intensity of the ambient noise. I use silicon earplugs and comfortable, on ear passive (not noise cancelling) earmuffs. For more on ear protection resources, including babies and children, click here:

These are the earmuffs I use:

They are comfortable on the ear and head for about 30 minutes. I use Mack’s silicon earplugs as I think they block out sound better than foam. If you are stuck in this area of earplug comfort, they have a trial packet which I highly recommend.

Before using the sound gear, prepare. For example, I know that weekends in the last part of June contain fireworks use both by private citizens and our municipality. The municipal show is advertised well ahead of time, so on the last Saturday of June, I know to have music playing and all 4 sound machines in my home turned up to a very high volume. I then put on my “ear gear” according to the intensity of protection I need.

I know from the time they end up until the first few weekends in July that there will be a lot of concussive booms going on. Using the sound protection helps me stay in control vs. trying to control others or have them control me.

The next thing I do to prepare is to take extra anti-anxiety medication around 8pm (close to sunset).

I also unashamedly stim during this time if I am not engaged in a chore (vacuuming is very helpful as I am constantly moving). Rocking helps me cope.

How you use this information should be adaptive. What works for me may work in whole or in part or it might not work for you at all. Don’t be discouraged. We are all different, even those of us on the autism spectrum. Remember consult a doctor before taking any medication or changing the dose.

My Christian faith also plays a role. Praying and meditaing on Scripture ex: “To everything there is a season” Ecclestiastes 3:1 is a sobering reminder that any tough time doesn’t last forever.

Patriotism aside, I don’t enjoy this time of year. I won’t deny it. I am grateful to God, however, that I can make the time more bearable and know cool fall nights will be here before I know it.

May God bless you on your autism journey!


2 Bumblers on flower

2 Bumblers on clover blossom

S is for Stop Saying Savant Syndrome and Splinter Skills.


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