View Full Version : The combo of both ADHD and Aspergers


Marspider
02-02-14, 01:27 PM
Hi, all

(oh thank god, I had a moment of utter rage when I pressed the back button and thought all I had written was lost but it's still here.:yes:)

I used to be on here quite a bit, moaning and moaning. I got signed off work last year from June to October as I had a major breakdown and chronic fatigue and couldn't cope with uni and work. My sister had to move in with me for a month.
I'm still so so.

I've had yet another relationship crash which I actually had high hopes for but that's the story of my life.
He is Aspergers very probably and in my attempt to communicate him better, I read up a lot on it.

I'm diagnosed with ADHD and dyspraxia. I'm actually quite okay with the physical side of dyspraxia, I stumble a bit sometimes and fall over invisible things and have to be careful with hot stuff and knives. I have for example a heavy duty tin opener which is quite solid but it's not too impairing for me on the physical side. I needed an official diagnosis when I was doing architecture lol for help but they didn't know how to help me, neither did I so I threw in the towel. And I can't write for long in 3 hour exams either. The one big issue for me was the social side of dyspraxia. It's been an issue all my life. And the executive dysfunction bit.

Anyway, in the course of my research, I rethought quite a lot of things I had thought about Aspergers like I had thought it was lack of emotions. Untrue I now know. I always come across it, always score high on the spectrum, I just assumed it was my dyspraxia and ADHD. And well, I'm not like Sheldon or any stereotypical Aspergers. I did study computers but due to my innate lack of finishing stuff, well that didn't turn out. And I came across how Aspergers manifests in women.
I have been scared I was borderline because of my emotional responses but I was ready for anything because I'm so tired of living in my head.

In all the almost 20 years of therapy and everything else, nothing has worked. My depression and anxiety has been worse at times and much better at other times but there's a level of dysfunction that does not change which puts lie to the theory the dysfunction is because I'm anxious as I've been told so many times over the years. The anxiety is due to the dysfunction.

I've been on many anti depressants. I'm back on venlafaxine so that I don't jump off something high and it's doing that job. I'm typing this as we speak :p The one thing that has helped is due to my other issues, I can often call in sick to work and other commitments and I'm better again after a few days hiding in my room.

So imagine my surprise when I put the symptoms of dyspraxia and Aspergers side by side and now knowing the lack of emotions in AS is false, that really I related more to the Asperger's side once I added the social aspect. In my particular case of dyspraxia, I cannot distinguish it from Asperger's.

Also I was also very surprised when I looked at female version, not women who are stereotypically Aspergers but how it often presents in women and girls. To me it's obvious that it's like how ADHD was 20 years ago, when everyone was claiming it presented more in boys and later it turns out the ratio in adulthood is closer to 1:1.
Also how many women later diagnosed with Aspergers are referred for borderline, bipolar etc etc. It seems women with Aspergers are more likely to be diagnosed with borderline disorder.
I have emotional meltdowns but I'm not borderline, and have no idea how to manipulate people. I've often wished I could but I suck at it and can't figure out how people do it.

So I've had a big long think about my life from childhood till now and it's all just a masquerade. I've had more insights from the past 2 months of introspection, speaking with my parents, going over my memories than I've had in 20 years of being told in therapy I was anxious, learned helplessness and the other ******** that's really saying it's me being awkward. CBT hasn't really worked. Honestly for me I find it's a voodoo Tinkerbell process. If it doesn't work, it's me being obstructive.

Therapy is useful for the times when I'm emotionally wrought and need to speak with someone and I think I will probably need to use it for quite a long time but on actually helping me out in my day to day, nah.

At the age of 34, and in uni I still suffer from the same social isolation I suffered when I was 10. I'm WEIRD and awkward and in spite of my intense study, I cannot and don't know how to not make people uncomfortable. The best I've been able to do is superficial pleasantry and making myself invisible though I'm quite good at it. I'm pleasant, nice and inoffensive. I've perfected the amiable face so people leave me alone and not pester me with questions about what is wrong.

I've various routines for eg when I'm in an interview which is based on many career women I've seen over the years mostly on television. I also have my panther program, my homecoming queen program (giggling is involved) and I do if I say so myself have quite good powers of ********.

When I'm on the best ADHD med for me, I can indulge in my what I called ocd tendencies. They do not bother me and make me happy. What makes me unhappy is my inability to do them. Having things in satisfying order, being able to establish a routine which I love. I'm thinking that when my ADHD is more controlled, this side of me is able to emerge.
I've had a mild eating disorder in the past and it may not politically correct to say it, but it was one of the best times in my life. I had a rigid routine.
There's a whole lot more including my interests, my lack of hugging and hatred of social kissing but this is long enough and my hands are getting tired.
All I can say is I now have a giant sense of relief, shock and of ****! that explains it all now.

One thing I'm finding is that it's difficult to find how both ADHD and Aspergers will manifest itself as opposed to pure ADHD and/or pure Aspergers. How these opposing forces would work.

And last year, a study came out stating it wouldn't be a bad idea that people diagnosed for ADHD should be assessed for an ASD.

So next thing, as I've been referred back to the ADHD clinic to review my medication, is figure out how referrals for ASD work. I foresee a battle. I'm making preparations.

Any suggestions and observations would be welcomed.

Marspider
02-02-14, 01:32 PM
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23793277

Asperger Syndrome: a frequent comorbidity in first diagnosed adult ADHD patients?
Roy M, Ohlmeier MD, Osterhagen L, Prox-Vagedes V, Dillo W.
Author information
Abstract

BACKGROUND:
Because adult ADHD is often accompanied by psychiatric comorbidities, the diagnostic process should include a thorough investigation for comorbid disorders. Asperger-Syndrome is rarely reported in adult ADHD and commonly little attention is paid to this possible comorbidity.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS:
We investigated 53 adult ADHD-patients which visited our out patient clinic for first ADHD-diagnosis (17 females, 36 males; range of age: 18-56 years) for the frequency of a comorbid Asperger-Syndrome. Diagnosis of this autism-spectrum disorder was confirmed by applying the appropriate DSM-IV-criteria. Additionally we tested the power of the two screening-instruments "Autism-spectrum quotient" (AQ) and "Empathy quotient" (EQ) by Baron-Cohen for screening Asperger-Syndrome in adult ADHD.


RESULTS:
Eight ADHD-patients were diagnosed with a comorbid Asperger-Syndrome (15.1%). The difference in AQ- and EQ-scores between pure ADHD-patients and comorbid patients was analysed, showing significantly higher scores in AQ and significant lower scores in EQ in comorbid patients.

CONCLUSIONS:
Results show that the frequency of Asperger-Syndrome seems to be substantially increased in adult ADHD (versus the prevalence of 0.06% in the general population), indicating that investigators of adult ADHD should also be attentive to autism-spectrum disorders. Especially the AQ seems to be a potential screening instrument for Asperger-Syndrome in adult ADHD-patients.

FroGpants
03-23-14, 02:22 PM
Hi Marspider, I'm so glad you posted this since I've been wondering about all this too. I read about Aspergers and see some of myself in it. Not understanding the intentions of others, rigid adherence to rules, etc.

I did the same as you with years of therapy and meds and not getting anywhere. It wasn't until my adhd diagnosis that I finally started figuring out what's been going on. It's been pretty amazing. My family was always exasperated because I really blew things out of proportion and I honestly thought they were being horrible and neglecting me.

Maybe I'm thinking along the same lines as you. That if I go for an evaluation they're just gonna kind of laugh at me like, don't be ridiculous.