Is Asperger’s Syndrome Autism?
How to Live with Asperger's Syndrome
Below are tips on how to live with autism or Asperger's Syndrome. People who live with Asperger's may be called "Aspies" or "Aspergians" and they are sometimes labeled as geeks, dorks, or nerds. Autistic people often experience problems with social interaction that neurotypicals (non-autistic people) take for granted. With patience, and the right help, anybody with Aspergers can succeed in this world.
Remember that autism is a neurological disability, not a disease.Every personality type has its positives and negatives. Autistic people are usually funny, insightful, detail-oriented, and moral. They may need help with social skills, anxiety management, choice making, and understanding unwritten social rules. Since autistic people are very diverse, it's difficult to generalize about their traits.
Consider how to develop social skills.Therapies such as RDI can help you work on learning how to interact with neurotypicals.
- Conversations in various social situations
- Job interview skills
- Asserting your needs and boundaries
- Reading facial expressions
- Determining whether someone is interested in talking
Learn which specific aspects of Asperger's Syndrome give you the most trouble, and try to work around them.
Learn how to handle sensory overload and meltdowns.These can be incredibly frustrating to deal with, and it's important to know how to stay feeling good. Don't stop at the wikiHow articles—look online to see what other autistic writers do in order to stay calm.
Focus on your strengths.Being disabled doesn't make you a weak or lesser person—it's just one aspect of who you are. You can still find meaningful work, build worthwhile relationships, and make the world a better place. You are not broken.
Practice independent living.For teens and young adults, as you get older, you need to take necessary steps so you can eventually live on your own.
- Start doing laundry, cleaning your room, and doing dishes. Ask your parents for help until you feel able to do it yourself.
- Find a program that teaches disabled people to drive.
- Find a job. Job assistance programs are available to help you.
- If you are unable to take care of yourself, you can live in assisted living. Many intelligent and good people, like autistic writer Amy Sequenzia, live in some form of assisted living.
Face your anxieties.Many autistic people face social anxiety (e.g. talking to groups or professors), generalized anxiety (e.g. fear of the future), or PTSD (e.g. from abusive therapists). Here are some tips to deal with anxiety.
- Talk to your therapist.
- Try facing your fears in little pieces. If you're afraid of talking to a guy you like, first smile at him in the hallway. Once you can handle that, try saying "Hi" or "How are you?" Remember that you're in control, and you can back out whenever you start to feel overwhelmed.
- Ask yourself: what's the worst thing that could happen? Is this realistic? How bad is itlikelyto get? Is it possible that your thinking is distorted?
- If you're feeling bad about yourself, take the perspective of a friend. "Would I be okay with my friend being told that she's a loser? Then should I say this to myself?" "Would I judge a friend for slipping up like that?" If not, thenyou're fine.
- Practice habits that lower stress. Exercise is a good way to lower stress levels. Also make sure you are getting enough sleep, eat well, and limit how much caffeine you consume.
Tips for Interpersonal Skills
Remember to talkwithpeople, notatthem.A good ratio in a one-on-one conversation is to listen about 70% of the time and talk about 30%. Try not to talk for more than five to ten minutes at a time. Let the other person set the pace of the conversation.
- Sometimes people are interested in monologues, because they want to learn more about your special interests. If they ask, it's okay to dive right in! Monitor their expression, and give pauses to allow them to react, so that you can adjust the subject or answer questions as need be.
Know that eye contact is not a necessity.While most neurotypicals engage in it, it is perfectly fine not to do it if it makes you feel uncomfortable or distracted. Depending on what you can handle, try one of these:
- Watch their hands or feet. (Looking in their general direction suggests listening.)
- Look at their shirt, scarf, or necklace.
- Observe their chin, mouth, nose, hair, or forehead wrinkles.
- Look at their left eye briefly and then shift to their right eye.
- Look at the point between their eyes. Unless they're really close to you, it will appear to them that you are making eye contact.
Learn how to read other people's behavior.This can be done by:
- Watching television shows and observing the faces
- Looking at art tutorials: what do angry faces look like? What do happy faces look like?
- Asking other autistic people for tips
Listen with the intent to understand.Try to fully understand how the person feels before you explain your point of view. While this can be a difficult thing to do, people usually respond very well to it, and feel more opening to listen once they know that they're heard.
- Ask questions to clarify. "She moved the deadline of the report?"
- Summarize what they've said. "So, you felt frustrated when your dad kept cutting you off like that." (It sounds silly, but it works!)
- Ask for their opinion. "Did you think it was fair of the academy to do that?"
Ask before offering advice.Many autistic people experience a strong sense ofsocial responsibility,or a desire to help out and fix problems. However, sometimes neurotypicals do not want advice—the best way you can help them is by listening. In this case, it is best to stave off the impulse to help, and allow them to be independent (for better or for worse).
- "Were you looking for advice, or just someone to commiserate? Because that sounds like it stinks."
- "Would you like some suggestions on how to deal with that?"
- "I went through a similar experience last fall. Let me know if you'd like any tips."
Learn when it is appropriate to touch and approach people.Practice what you learned and try to follow the treatment plan recommendations.
Practice validating others' feelings.This practice can cause people to quickly trust and like you. Whether you agree with their actions or not, make it clear that you hear them and sympathize with their troubles. Acknowledge their feelings, rather than trying to one-up them, and your social skills will be better than those of plenty of neurotypicals.
- "I'm really sorry to hear that. That sounds rough."
The world can be a confusing or isolating place for an autistic person. A strong support network will help you meet the challenges of daily life.
QuestionI have Asperger's and when I try to explain to people (teachers and kids) they say I'm making excuses and say I still can make a choice to behave normally. This is so aggravating, what can I do?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerMost teachers and kids don't know how to deal with people with Asperger's. Speak to your parents, school counselor and principal about the issue and they should work to get a system in place to better suit your needs.Thanks!
QuestionPeople at my school always bully me about my autism. They call me retarded and think autism is a joke. How can I prevent this?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerStand up for yourself, and report this to your parents and the principal.Thanks!
QuestionI always get anxious when I am trying to read someone. Is the ability to read people a necessary skill?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerReading people as in reading emotions is important if you want to be able to talk and relate to other people. If you have a problem reading emotions, try finding certain patterns. For example, if the edges of a person's mouth are curled up, that means they are smiling, although it might be difficult to figure out why exactly they're smiling.Thanks!
QuestionWhen I look at people's faces at school, I can't stop smiling. What should I do?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerSmiling is good. Be happy. This isn't a bad thing, to be honest. Just be yourself.Thanks!
QuestionAnxiety is the biggest obstacle for me. Just the idea of meeting up with a stranger brings about a sense of dread. Facing my fears doesn't work (I do solo presentations weekly to 30+). Any advice?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerConsider therapy. You can try deep breathing or affirmations. Before the presentation, do something to calm yourself down.Thanks!
QuestionShould I tell my friends I have Aspergers? My friends are pretty accepting of differences, but I'm not sure how they'll react if they know I have Aspergers.wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you feel you are ready, go for it. If they don't accept you, then they were not real friends. Real friends don't care what you have, only that you are a good person.Thanks!
QuestionI just recently found out I have autism, and I'm not sure if my parents have known all along. How would I ask them if they knew or not?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou may just want to bring it up at some point, and stay calm about it. Think about how you will react to the different possible answers they may give you, and how you'll deal with it. If they refuse to answer, give them time and then bring up the topic again. Don't be aggressive about it.Thanks!
QuestionI am 47 and have only just been diagnosed with Asperger's. Should I be looking at different ways to treat my condition?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerDo you feel you need treatment? If so, what route you take will depend on what symptoms you may want help with. For example, if you have sensory issues, sensory therapy may prove very helpful. Be sure to research any treatment you consider in advance.Thanks!
QuestionI have Asperger's and always am accused of being rude. What do they mean?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt's the way we tend to speak. There's a German saying that goes "The tone makes the music." The truth spoken in the wrong tone makes it sound unpleasant. Ask for help, especially in your strong subjects. Analyse how popular people speak.Thanks!
QuestionI'm autistic and I hate noise. Whenever there is too much noise I cover my ears, start humming, and look at the ground. A lot of kids at my school tease me for doing that and I can't tell the teachers because they honestly can't do anything about it. What can I do?Community AnswerYou could see the counselor or talk to your parents. Your teachers might have a few solutions like letting you take a break. If your peers are teasing you, tell a counselor or teacher.Thanks!
Video: Living With Asperger Syndrome
I Finally Discovered The Perfect Pillow, And I’ve Never Slept Better
Targeting Chemotherapy Only Where Its Needed
How to Recognize Hepatitis C Symptoms
Broccoli and Cheese Stuffed Baked Potatoes
8 Different Way To Decorate Lighting With Natural Looks
How to Keep Cat Litter from Tracking
Men Are Obsessed With My Butt: One Woman’sStory
How to Decorate Your Home for Christmas at the Very Last Minute
How to Deal with Getting Sick During Solo Travel
How to Use Podcasting
How to Make Cucumber Juice