So, it has been a while. It’s not that nothing has been happening, it’s deciding what to write about and not being able to make a decision.
So for an update on where I am at.
I am at what I will call stage two of getting a diagnosis. My daughter has been diagnosed as high functioning level one. She has issues with auditory processing as well as the usual social stuff.
Slightly longer version:
After waiting four months for my initial appointment with specialist psychologist who is the only one in the area qualified to do the diagnosis I have had my initial appointment and I show enough signs signs to proceed with an official diagnosis. I have done several online questionnaires, have a couple of ones I have to print and and do yet to complete but my next appointment is in another three weeks so i have time to process. There is no rushing this process.
But, my daughter who lives in Queensland was diagnosed the week after my initial appointment and she only started pursuing a diagnosis after I told her I was.
That isn’t quite like it sounds.
My daughter is doing psychology at Uni. In one of their first classes they are told not to self diagnose and also told if they can’t diagnose themselves with at least one condition that they aren’t really trying. When doing the class that covered autism my daughter resonated strongly with a lot of the indicators. She discussed this with her fiance (also studying psychology) and they decided that they shouldn’t self diagnose and she moved on. Then two years later I come along and say I think I might be autistic and she decides to pursue a diagnosis for herself. She has lecturers and all sorts of other contacts she can use can navigate what needs to be done much easier than your usual person on the street who is a square one. She knew where to go and who to ask when you don’t have a pediatrician. There is also a lot shorter waiting list where she lives to get an appointment with those qualified to give an official diagnosis.
Back to me.
One of the questionnaires they ask you to do is for a family member or other person who knew you as a child. Well, I am over 50 years old and my Mum passed away over 10 years ago. My Dad is pretty much blind and was a hard working sole bread winner when I was younger. He wouldn’t be able to read the questions and I’m not sure he would know the day to day issues his children had when they were young. I therefore asked my older sister if she could give it her best shot. There was a bit of discussion as she was the first person I had come out to apart from my husband and daughter. Turns out my sister has had work colleagues ask her is she might be autistic. Personally I think a lot (just about all) of my family is probably autistic but given they live interstate I am waiting to tell most of them that I am until I get that little bit of paper that tells me so. There are a couple of added on family members that I don’t want to deal with until I have it in writing because they will know better than I do and I don’t want to deal with that shit without a written ‘fuck off, you don’t know what you’re talking about’. Probably harsh but there have been too many instances in my life with other people telling me they know me better than I know myself. I want to have the proof that I know me before they start trying to tell me I don’t.
So, summing it up, I am on my way to an autism diagnosis. My daughter has an autism diagnosis. The rest of my family probably is autistic but we aren’t telling them that we are until it is official.
I don’t think it will make much difference to my siblings but if there are signs in my younger nieces and nephews or in my older nephews kids then I would like to do what I can to give them a chance at a life less difficult than mine.