Springingtiger's Blog

Mature Autism and the Aspergers Forum

The other day I dropped into an on line Aspergers forum. It is nice knowing that there are others like me out there and it is good to have places where we can go to share opinions and problems, obviously forums are a good thing, or are they? While there are positive aspects of forums I do have one concern, much of the time the conversations consist of someone posting an experience which then elicits a chorus of, “me too”s. As we all know it is easy for people with Aspergers to develop obsessions and I wonder whether forums where Aspies discuss their experiences might not encourage obsessiveness.

Many Aspies – particularly those diagnosed later in life – have spent their lives with symptoms of Aspergers without ever recognising them, they are just part of who we are. Having received a diagnosis many aspects of our lives are seen in a new light and the experiences of other Aspies are like a mirror in which we see ourselves. The question must be asked how much of the time and effort we spend on learning about our Aspergers is productive and useful, how much do we really need to know? Do forums provide a valuable service or merely feed an obsession?

I am inclined to to the opinion that just as autism blogs can be a source of information when used critically, so forums are useful, however any one using them must retain a degree of clarity and be aware that with their usefulness they also carry a degree of risk. Also it is well to remember that if you’ve got this far despite all the quirks of Aspergers, the information you find in a forum may be useful, but it does not define you, nor do you need it. Use the awareness you gain to free yourself from the constraints of which you were never aware, do not allow it to imprison you into a stereotype.


2 Comments so far
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I was diagnosed a couple of years ago, aged 47, and find that much of the information online is about children with Asperger’s…or people who are now young adults, but who were diagnosed as children. Many of the issues discussed aren’t relevant to me and my situation because the people haven’t spent the amount of time being lonely, unemployed or socially isolated that I have.

Comment by Lee

Lee, you may find asperger’s awareness page on Facebook useful – https://www.facebook.com/#!/aspergersawarenesspage

Comment by springingtiger

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