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To Know or Not to Know: Managing A Late Diagnosis of Autism

One of the things that I have noticed a great deal on social media seems to be an increase of people wondering if they have a diagnosis of Autism. I don’t know the analytics to online searches for at-home tests, but I have no doubt that it has skyrocketed over the last few years.

Why Do You Want to Know?

In my own sessions, I get this question at least once a week, if not more. My response usually shocks people. Why do you want to know? The reason for this question is multifaceted. For many people, they are wanting to know why they seem different from their peers. Perhaps they have struggled to make friends, hold on to romantic relationships, or someone has told them they may have the “tism”. Although many of these traits may play a part in the diagnosis of Autism. There is far more to it than a short checklist.

Diagnosis is not a Simple Process

Diagnosis looks at sensory processing, developmental milestones, coordination, and social interaction just to start with. Testing is lengthy and can be very expensive. I don’t say these things to discourage finding the truth, but just give a glimpse of the process. For an adult a late diagnosis has the ability to give clarity to why things may seem difficult for you compared to others and why other things come very easy. If you can have a better understanding of how your mind works, you can help others to understand as well.

Is a Diagnosis Right for You?

There may be things you want to work on about yourself that having this understanding will enable you to have the vocabulary to ask for. Unfortunately for most people having this diagnosis may not provide extra accommodations at your workplace and your family will not immediately understand you better. Those things will take time, energy, and education. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses may allow you to better decisions at work or where you work. Educating your loved ones may create a stronger bond. Seeking out answers comes in many forms, choose the path that is right for you.

At Mind Works Counseling Services in Lubbock, TX. We specialize in providing mental health counseling to adults and adolescents with Autism. While we may not be who you turn to for a formal diagnosis, we are the ones who can help you understand yourself a bit better.

Learn more about the Autism Counseling services we offer.

Contact us to schedule an appointment or to let us answer any questions you may have.

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