I recently met with the doctor who performed my diagnostic testing to discuss his findings. He looked concerned at the beginning – I think he was worried I would react negatively to what he had to tell me. So, he asked me how best to lay things out…did I want the detailed discussion leading up to the diagnosis, or did I want the short and sweet of it first, with back-fill after. My preference: let’s cut to the chase.
So, officially, I am not on the spectrum, though I possess many traits that people who are on the spectrum, demonstrate. I fall into a new diagnosis (new to the DSM-V, that is); Social (Pragmatic) Communication Disorder, as well as Social Anxiety Disorder. (He also concurred with my current physician’s diagnoses of Major Depressive Disorder and PTSD).
We covered a lot of ground during our meeting, but we didn’t get through the whole report – which he is mailing to me, so I still need to go over that when it arrives. I’m not disappointed by the diagnosis. We discussed the symptoms in depth, and it makes perfect sense. In addition, he was able to provide me with a list of providers that specialize in this disorder, so there is the opportunity for me to benefit from a specific type of speech/language therapy, known as heuristics.
I think the biggest ‘question’ in my mind right now revolves around community. I am not autistic, even though I self-identify with so many of the traits, especially those related to how I interpret cues (or, more frequently…miss them altogether) from my environment. But, I suspect, given what I’ve experienced within the Autism community so far, that the absence of an ASD diagnosis would NOT result in any kind of exclusion or rejection. Far from it: I find people in this community to be very inclusive, compassionate, and supportive. Most have suffered greatly at the hands of a largely NeuroTypical society that habitually pathologizes cognitive and behavioral differences instead of trying to understand them. I guess, what I’m saying, is that I feel at home in this community, and that is something extraordinary, and precious, indeed.
God bless you today, and every day!!