The first thing to note is that autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder, not a mental illness, and it is congenital, not acquired. But autism can cause mental illness, which I will talk about later. But if you were normal at first, but later became introverted and closed because of certain things, it is not autism, you may just have some psychological problems.
Let's first popularize the classification of autism (also known as autism): Autism is a spectrum disorder (ASD, Autism Spectrum Disorder), which is a broad sense of autism defined based on the core symptoms of autism. It includes not only typical autism, but also atypical autism, such as: Asperger's syndrome, borderline autism, and suspected autism.
The typical symptoms of autism are:
1. Social communication barriers: generally manifested as lack of communication or communication skills with others, lack of secure attachment relationship with parents, etc.;
2. Language communication disorder: language development is backward, or language regression occurs after normal language development, or language lacks the nature of communication;
3. Repeat stereotyped behavior. In addition to the above core symptoms, there are also some peripheral symptoms, such as digestive system, immune system, sensory system and other aspects. These problems greatly interfere with human senses and cause various weird behaviors in patients with autism. . They often have paresthesias, manifested as visual, auditory, and tactile sensitivity. There are severe partial eclipses, poor balance, sleep disorders, etc.; other common behaviors include hyperactivity, distraction, tantrums, aggression, self-injury, etc.
If a child has more than 6 symptoms, it is a typical autism. Asperger syndrome (AS): There are also varying degrees of social communication barriers, but language and perception development are normal. Many children with Asperger's disease are hyperactive, have difficulty concentrating on things they are not interested in, and become obsessed with things they love. At the same time, there is an imbalance in intellectual development, which may show high talent in some aspects, but it is difficult to learn in other aspects.
PDDNOS Pervasive Developmental Disorder: This is a relatively borderline autism. Such children also have the three core characteristics of typical autism, but their symptoms do not exceed six. The so-called "spectrum" means that the severity of autism varies greatly. In severe cases, people may have no language at all and cannot take care of themselves in life; while high-functioning autism, including Asperger's disease (AS), may not be present at an early age. Shows too many differences from other children. Autism is a mental development disorder that has been formally established in the medical field in the past 50 years, and its diagnostic criteria have also been changing.
According to the latest data from the United States, 1 out of 88 people are on the autism spectrum (I even see data saying 66 people). Of course, this data has a lot to do with the diagnostic criteria. From experience, most of the currently diagnosed children belong to the spectrum of children with more severe symptoms. In fact, many people with autistic traits have not been diagnosed throughout their lives, but it does not mean that they are not troubled. Apple's founder Jobs has AS characteristics, such as his persistence in his own design philosophy, his stereotype of wearing only a black turtleneck, and the difficulties in relations with colleagues and family members reflect his great social barriers. It is said that Einstein is also AS; and Van Gogh's talent reflects the visual talent and abnormality of people with autism.
If you are searching for relevant information in front of the computer and want to know whether you have autistic traits, then at least you may be high-functioning autism, or AS. You may be early in your childhood and have extraordinary memory. You are a master of certain subjects in school, but some subjects will find it very difficult. For AS, the biggest trouble comes from social barriers, which will become prominent during adolescence. If you are a girl, you may have no interest in clothes, makeup, and celebrity gossip that girls of the same age are interested in, and would rather study your favorite encyclopedias in the library alone.
If you are a boy, you may not understand many topics discussed by boys of the same age, nor why other students laugh suddenly. Even if you start to be interested in girls, they all think you are weird, avoiding you, and mocking you secretly. You find that in addition to language, people's body movements, facial expressions, and tone of voice are also mysterious, but you can't understand communication signals.
Some children with AS will be bullied in school. These experiences will make you more avoid the intersection with others. Although you are a high-cold schoolmaster, you also long for friends, but other people will see you as a weirdo, and you also find it so difficult to make friends. This incomprehensible sense of loneliness and frustration of being rejected by peer groups makes you more focused on your own world. In fact, this is a kind of escape, but there is nothing you can do. Many AS develop into depression and anxiety during adolescence, and severe cases even require hospitalization. Social barriers can also seriously affect your life as an adult. AS is very unsuitable for the kind of work that deals with people, because there are too many uncertainties. Computer engineers or scientific research are more suitable for them. They have rigorous logic and an absolute mode of thinking that is either black or white. I have no doubt that many of the top hackers in the world are AS. At work, you may feel that the interpersonal relationship between colleagues is very complicated and difficult to adapt. You do not understand office politics, speak too directly, and often offend leaders. In the relationship between the sexes, because you cannot understand the emotions of the other half, you feel very helpless and confused. Judging from many foreign cases, many high-functioning autism, or AS are diagnosed after adulthood. Most people feel that this kind of diagnosis is a relief for them, because they finally have been with them for themselves. The other people’s misfits found the reason.
If you want to know more about this, I recommend the book "The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome", which may help you understand yourself more. If you want to be diagnosed, you can also go to the hospital. You can go to a psychiatric hospital. The diagnosis is only to let you know more about yourself and know where your limits are.
Most people with autism tend to be perfectionists. When they try something very hard but cannot achieve it, it will bring a lot of pressure and frustration to themselves. In the long run, they will experience depression, anxiety, etc. Serious psychological problems. Knowing that you are inherently different from others may make you less competitive with yourself and give you a sense of relief. If you already have a tendency to depression and anxiety, you also need to go to the hospital for treatment as soon as possible. Appropriate medication can help you overcome the symptoms of depression. But there is no medicine to treat autism, it will stay with you for a lifetime. What should I do if I am diagnosed with autism tendency? If you are born with an Apple computer configuration, accept this fate, and Apple computers have various advantages that PCs can’t match. Give full play to your love and perseverance for something, and believe that you will be able to make a special achievement. However, because this is a PC-dominated world, you also need to learn some compatibility and diagnose that you have autistic traits, but you can't always use autism as an excuse to avoid things you are not good at. Fully understand the shortcomings, and consciously improve, especially the social skills. Maybe you are reluctant, but one of the advantages of AS is that once they decide something, they will persevere, so believe that you can do it!
You may be worried: Is autism inherited? The current argument is that the cause of autism is unknown, but according to my observations, it is not a scientific argument. There is indeed a family influence. The parents of a child with autism, or one of the grandparents may have stereotyped, persistent, and true personality traits. In addition, the mother’s emotions during pregnancy are also very important. If the husband and wife quarrel frequently during the period, the mother’s emotions will affect the fetus. But don't worry too much. If you can have a cheerful and optimistic attitude, it will definitely affect the next generation.
There are many inspirational stories in the autobiography <Different But Not Less> written by more than a dozen high-functioning autism and AS in the United States. One of them is that people with autism are "late flowers" because The development of their nervous system is slower than that of ordinary people, so many of them have been learning all their lives and have made amazing achievements. A woman was diagnosed with AS at the age of 40. She decided to become a professional psychotherapist because she hopes to help more people who have the same problems as her. A few years later, she obtained a PhD. She is currently a professional advocating for the rights of autistic people. These inspirational stories also mention one thing, that is to have the courage to break through your "comfort zone". For autistic people, dealing with people is one of the most difficult obstacles.
There is a lady who loves history very much and works as a lecturer in a museum. Although she can recite historical facts endlessly, visitors feel that there is no interaction with her. For the job she loves, she participates in public speaking courses, learns to make eye contact with others, and strives to observe the reaction of the other person in the process of dialogue. These things that are common to ordinary people, even instinctive, are actually very difficult for people on the autism spectrum, but she has improved a lot through learning and continuous practice, and she has also won the recognition of tourists. A woman wrote in the book: "If God gives you a lemon, use it to make a delicious lemon juice!" If you are born with autism characteristics, then accept it and be proud of it. Your strengths, improve your weaknesses. Different, but not Less. You are different, but your value is never less than others.
Finally, I want to say that if you feel that you do not have this tendency after reading this article, it is of course a good thing. However, please don't laugh at others' pain. Just judging others is just conjecture and groaning. Because you are not someone else, do yourself first. Toys For ASD.
Author: Steven Ting
Cofounder of www.cykapu.com, father of two children. As a man over 30, only write the thing i am interesting in.