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Is there such a thing as low functioning aspergers?

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by Ephraim Becker, Mar 4, 2021.

  1. Ephraim Becker

    Ephraim Becker Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    There was someone I met a few years ago that said that he has aspergers but he seems low functioning. He can't go to places himself and needs a driver to bring him to places instead. He lives in a residence home. He doesn't seem that smart. Can someone have aspergers and still be low functioning?
     
  2. Alexej

    Alexej Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    My initial response is that under DMS V there is ASD 1,2 and 3. Asperger's is now designated as ASD 1, so I think that somebody with low functioning Asperger's would now be described as having ASD 2.

    I think this is as much a question of language as anything.
     
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  3. Ephraim Becker

    Ephraim Becker Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    But what about before DSM V?
     
  4. jared mills

    jared mills Rookie

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    I don't even know what to make of this.
     
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  5. _eri_bellehumeur

    _eri_bellehumeur Active Member

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    This is a part of why functioning labels and the Aspergers diagnosis are no longer used. Neither are able to consistently describe the care needs of people on the spectrum. Using the term "high functioning" to describe somebody makes it seem like that individual doesn't need support, when they could have serious problems in certain aspects of life that aren't immediately visible. This can result in those needs being ignored. Functioning labels really just describe how well an autistic person can fit into neurotypical society.

    People can also have comorbid disorders that drastically affect presentation (if they have an anxiety disorder or PTSD, that can be extremely limiting depending on the access and kind of support he has).

    Intelligence is extremely subjective and can be negatively affected by everything from environment, depression, medication, diet and others. The main way to measure intelligence (the IQ test) has been scientifically disproved. Intelligence can't really be measured, as there are many different types of intelligence and many reasons why a person may not be expressing their full potential.
     
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  6. Judge

    Judge Well-Known Member

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    Yes. It's largely an ambiguous label short of someone medically diagnosed or deemed incapacitated by a court. With the reality being for most of us that how well or how poorly we all deal with everyday life can be a myriad of good and bad circumstances.

    It's widely used term, but in reality it's anything but an objective way to describe one's ability to survive in the Neurotypical world. If the authorities could observe some of my OCD behaviors up close and personal, they'd probably lock me up. "Functioning" or not...:rolleyes:
     
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  7. Suzanne

    Suzanne Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I am leaning towards the lower end, because I am not able to go out on my own to places ie I have extreme social anxiety and even though I am entitled to a free taxi, even that scares the wits out of me and since the covid situation, I have felt much less anxious, because of the lack of pressure to conform.

    Why do you say he doesn't seem that smart? I was deemed as stupid as a child.
     
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  8. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    you have changed as you have physically grown.

    Aspergers syndrome describes someone who can demonstrate a degree of sentience, like a bird can eat one type of food but would never eat another ,it also shows intelligence in surviving where it is .
    This person can demonstrate intelligence but they aren't neurotypical, so you are most perceptive about neurotypicals! who live by a certain faith as opposed to not.

    If you observed people everyday with possible developmental differences, you could perceive their level of perception to a certain degree .

    I've learned things you haven't ,because I'm not you, Hans Asperger spent time observing a few!!! young boys, not every person who has the diagnosis Aspergers syndrome.it

    It seems !?that the brain of autistic people, is very developed for one very specific area of interest and compensates for the rest


    Are you confusing savant (2% of the autistic population)with high functioning autism ,how much help they need to resemble a robot neurotypical.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  9. selena

    selena Well-Known Member

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    I say no only because "low/high functioning" (and similar terms like "mild/severe") is entirely based on the NT's perspective--it's how they view how well we fit in (or how "normal" we are) into their world.

    I used to identify as an Aspie because I was supposedly high-functioning, but my life history was just a mess no matter how you sliced it that I couldn't possibly high-functioning. I think the "Aspie" label is also something that can be used to divide-and-conquer us neurodivergent people, and I'm done being used as a pawn to further anyone's agenda. Today I simply identify as autistic, and I'm pretty much the same person I was before and after I labeled myself an Aspie.

    Regarding your acquaintance, however he identifies himself is his business. Yes, self-perceptions can be different from how the rest of the world views you, but why are we even troubling ourselves wondering whether or not someone qualifies to call himself an Aspie because he doesn't meet our standards?
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
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  10. The Pandector

    The Pandector Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I think it's an interesting question, as it gets to a few of the roots of the autistic situation as I see it. I finally self-diagnosed at age 68. Looking at what I accomplished in my life is only one way to evaluate my intelligence.

    I am not kidding when I say that I knew two things as a young child: 1) I see and understand things that others either can't or won't. 2) I am not really a member of the human race.

    I have passed through several distinct periods in my life. By the time I was 25, I had probably spent 10 years as a basket case and 15 years in shutdown. Around then, simple economics jolted me into action. I was still basically shut off socially, but determined to concentrate on becoming valuable to my employer. Within 10 years of that, I was managing a cutting-edge and mission-critical computer complex for the military (contractor.)

    Back up to when I was in 8th grade where I found speech and debate. When still in 9th grade, my coach petitioned the NFL to have me transferred to the upper high school division for the official competitions. He was right; I didn't win as often up there, but still far outstripped all my peers in winning. Passed into high school, where they said that, if you wanted to participate in speech and debate, you had to dress in one of those weird smock-and-cap outfits and wander through the bleachers selling food and drinks. It wasn't a matter of being too proud; the ridicule that the S&D crowd got from the jocks and everyone else was WAY beyond what I could handle. Couldn't keep my head on straight, couldn't find my way back to the reloading station. That was the end of that brief twinkling.

    In other words... by the time I was 35, anyone who knew or observed me during at least half of those years would have had to say that I just didn't seem that smart. Look at the resume, impressive. Talk to those who knew and observed me, well you know the drill... flat tones, dead features, no social interest. Certainly not a candidate for a rewarding social experience.

    Give your friend time and love; if they decide to come out and play, they may surprise you. Intelligence is a strange concept, but the old thing about books and covers still holds.
     
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  11. Streetwise

    Streetwise Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    People like to label everything, so they, in this case psychiatry!, in their greed ,shock, horror not!!!,decided we are mentally ill and lumped us in with mental illness, thus the DSM 5 or ICD 11 ,but it's physical ,a developmental difference .
     
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  12. Crossbreed

    Crossbreed Neur-D Missionary ☝️

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    Only colloquially.
    The current practice is to give a severity level [ASD1-ASD3] to express how much support the person requires.

    The person in the OP, if accurately assessed, would be unofficially thought of as ASD1.x.
    With the DSM-4, Aspergers & [Kanners] Autism were two distinct diagnoses correlating to ASD1 & ASD2/3. Anyone who did not fit neatly into those boxes was diagnosed with Pervasive Development Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified [PDD-NOS].

    It couldn't accommodate ASD1.x very well. Depending on the neuro-psych specialist, ASD1.x would be rounded up to ASD1 or down to ASD2, and they probably won't agree across the board.
     
  13. phantom

    phantom Member

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    Does he have trouble doing those things due to his autism or because of social anxiety? I find that anxiety, depression and low self esteem due to autism are bigger issues in my daily functioning than the autism itself.
     
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  14. dragonfire42

    dragonfire42 Perpetual outsider

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    Well, I can say that my official diagnosis is Asperger’s syndrome, but I’m nowhere near as high-functioning as people assume when they hear the term (which is why I usually phrase it as telling people that I am on the autism spectrum). I wouldn’t call myself low-functioning, but I’m certainly not high-functioning, either. Still constantly amazed at what a huge difference there is between me and people who actually are “high-functioning.” Under DSM V, I’m pretty sure I would be diagnosed as ASD level 2, not level 1.