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Hello friends! Do you think I should try for an official diagnosis??


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I am a 35 year old male, if that matters. I’ve been suspecting I’m autistic for about a year and the more I remember my life, the more I believe that I am, I was obsessed with tinkering with cars as a teenager and have made it a career. I would stay in the garage back then, often all night, I wouldn’t eat, I was obsessed with that interest, I used to role play as a kid by myself, like we were on the school bus and I was the bus driver, not sure if that means anything but its not a typical thing for a 5 year old I don’t think, at the same age I also was obsessed with roadmaps and would draw new roads on maps, making sure they look as real as possible, definitely not typical of a 5 year old. I was a mute in kindergarten and was frightened beyond belief in my school photo. I recently discovered I mask in almost all social situations going back to childhood. I was bullied, ridiculed and ostracized by my older brother which caused me many issues also which I recently discovered in therapy. I was told I was autistic as a kid by him but in a cruel ‘point and laugh at you’ way. Anyways throughout life for the most part, meeting a new person is very awkward at first and I can’t wait to end the conversation. But meeting autistic people, I’ve been known to immediately jump into free flowing, non awkward conversation about for example, electric cars, never met the dude and was told “he's autistic so just be aware”. Looking back, why did we need that warning? He was a completely normal human, to me anyways. And I think it should be up to him who he tells. My ex wife was very surprised, that’s not like me at all. My ex girlfriend and I hit it off almost immediately after she decided to ask me out on a date 12 hours after matching, and we were two peas in a pod after that. It’s not like I thought we connected on any level before meeting and I wasn’t sure if I was going to text her back the next day. Her son is autistic and she saw traits in both of us over time. She always said that if she was autistic, then I definitely am. She was later diagnosed. I went on a date recently with an autistic woman, same thing, it came completely natural to me like we already had been friends, even with the first phone call, which have ALWAYS gone awkwardly. And with dates women who were weren’t autistic, at least that I knew of, have been extremely awkward and I mask a lot during those. With the autistic women, I feel like I’m myself and the mask is off. I’m very literal and always corrected people that for example say Oriellys Auto Parts instead of Orielly Auto Parts. I’m very detail oriented and my vehicle inspections at work are described as being very detailed and consistent, I feel a need that every inspection has to be as thorough as the last and have all capital letters in the notes, and I feel bothered when they tell me just do a quick inspection for whatever reason. I was obsessed with road maps as a 5 year old, I would very carefully draw new roads and freeways and make sure they looked real, again, 5 years old. I had a threaded blanket as a child, that I would keep beside be just to constantly poke holes through, and was made fun of by my brother for that as well. I’ve stemmed in many various ways since then and never knew why. T. rex arms, all day long, when alone at home of course. I could go on and of course it been dismissed by the few people that I’ve shared this with including my doctor, he said “autism looks like if you freak out if a Kleenex box is in the wrong place, it’s like saying “well if you were having a heart attack you would be dead, your fine“. Anyways, Im glad to be here and have finally found people and a community I can actually say that feel like I fit in with and know how it feels, at least to grow up and live in a society that wants me to be ‘normal’❤️
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Hi @rjh41388 , welcome to the forum :) some of the things you describe, I was about to say, that's normal, I did that too - then I remembered that I'm autistic :) sounds like you have plenty of traits that could be worth looking into.

With all respect, your doctor doesn't sound like he knows what he is talking about with respect to autism - some autistic people might freak out over something not being in the right place, but not all of us, and if it was so easy to diagnose, then there wouldn't be a long waiting list...
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Hello and welcome, @rjh41388.

I recommend that you hang around the forum for awhile and start reading and engaging in the different threads here. On the forum, you can start to better understand the diversity of people who are autistic and what that experience looks like for different people.

My answer to your question is Yes and then No.

Yes if you have the opportunity, resources, and a good person to talk to. It can only help you to learn more about yourself. Could be ASD, could be ADHD, or it could be that you're just you.

No in the sense that an official diagnosis is not needed to learn more autism and yourself. ASD is broad, and everybody has a different personality and life.

(And try to stay away from YouTUbers, unless they have qualifications. Lots bad info out there)
Welcome! I got my diagnosis on Wednesday, although it was expected for a while before that. A bit jarring to get it for real.

Ask yourself what would change with the diagnosis. For me, it helps me to understand that my lifestyle might not be not so compatible and there's real choices that I will have to make to accommodate myself.
I would say if you need services that having a diagnosis would allow, then by all means do it. But if it optional, its too personnal a decision to have any real set answer. Many here are just self-diagnosed and have no plans, or see any need to get a formal diagnosis.
Welcome to Autism Forums. Looks like you came to the right place to explore who and what you are relative to your own kind here. The good news is that you are clearly working the issues out. The bad news is to understand that while it may be exhilarating to figure it out, not everyone in your closest social orbit is likely to accept it with similar enthusiasm.

That there are a tiny few who will want to understand and succeed. A few more who will want to understand and fail. Leaving the vast majority who don't understand and don't want to. Preferring to expect or demand that you conform to their thought processes (as if we had a choice).

It's why you need to seriously keep it all on a "need-to-know" basis in your own best interest. A key issue to consider if you choose to pursue a formal diagnosis through a qualified medical professional. Assuming you are American, it can be a tricky consideration given how autism is heavily stigmatized here. And that unless you are seeking government entitlements for your condition, simply securing a positive diagnosis for autism through a medical professional makes it all a formal matter of record. One which could follow you at times when you might not want to disclose such information. Just something to think about.

Yeah, it seems best for you not to share any more with your doctor, who clearly doesn't specialize in neurological conditions like autism. Not all of us have comorbid Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and care about how a box of Kleenex sits. Though you just met one- me. And there are a few others of our community that have OCD or OCPD. But as I stated, many of don't necessarily have such traits, behaviors or symptoms of comorbid conditions which may or may not follow autism.

LOL...I'm 68 and still obsessed with maps of any kind. :cool:

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