Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Just for Fun: Asperger's Syndrome Test

My friends (parents and advocates in the local autism community) often talk about or joke about the possibility of us all having Asperger's Syndrome. While I don't think that there is a single person on this planet that doesn't have a quirk, there is a good reason why parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) might suspect they have Asperger's Syndrome or high functioning autism.

While some people argue that ASD is caused by environmental triggers, ASD can also be a genetic disorder. Because of the genetic aspect of ASD, I suspect it is not uncommon for parents start to wonder about themselves after their child has been diagnosed.

Because I'm the mother of a nine-year-old boy with autism, I've wondered about myself. I really don't know for sure one way or the other. Opinions from other people about yours truly tend to vary. I'm content to say I'm just a bit quirky. However, I admit when I saw this AQ (A, as in Asperger's) test on a blog called The Pie Palace, I jumped at the chance to take it.

The disclaimer on the sight emphasized that the test is just for fun and that is the main reason I took it. My results: I scored a 24. That was the score needed to get the title "Math Contest Winner." Math was one of my weakest areas in school, so I found the title to be both amusing and ironic. My husband scored a 16. Nearby scores had titles aimed at females. He works with mostly women at an academic library, but is by no means effeminate.

The range to claim Asperger's Syndrome is 32-50. I suppose if you score in that range and want to pursue it further, you'll have to say something to your physician. Your doctor will then most likely refer you to a specialist (psychologist or psychiatrist) for an expensive diagnostic test. I'd only go that route if you think there might be a benefit in getting diagnosed. (That was the advice given to me by my counselor, whom I no longer need to see, and also my wise husband.)

Anyway, I realize many of you have probably stumbled upon this test already, but for the rest of you I'd highly recommend it. It takes quite a few minutes to complete, but is worth the time. The site is popular and has seven hundred or more comments. If you want to comment on your score here, I'd be happy to publish it and you'd have a better chance of having your comment noticed (well maybe by a few of us anyway.) Have fun.


Anonymous said...

Um, well I got a score of forty. I'm not sure how accurate this is, though I do suspect that there is a good chance I have it. I'm nineteen, and I have been living with random friends and my self since about the age of fourteen. My question is, with that in consideration, is I am obviously not too wealthy. Where would I go for further testing, and do you know if it is expensive? I suppose if I had it, I should know by nineteen..

J said...

I'll need more time to adequately answer your question about testing. Once I get enough info, I'll probably do a post, but that may take awhile since I've been involved in the planning of Autism Awarenness events.

Yes, testing can be expensive especiallly if you live in the United States. It depends what part of the world you live in, I suspect.

I would like to say that I know of people in their forties and fifties that have been recently diagnosed. Information about Asperger's Syndrome (A.S.) and the awareness of the disorder has increased significantly in the past decade. So it's quite possible that you have Asperger's Syndrome. Some people are content to self diagnos themselves, but others want to have it confirmed by a professional.

Most people with A.S. have a special interest area and can achieve success through that interest. If you have one or two interests that your especially brilliant at, then consider pursuing a career in that area. Community colleges are a great place to start as they are less expensive and less intimidating than four year schools. Financial aide is available at most institutions. Further, many colleges and universities have learning centers or some accomodation to help those who have some challenges. I wish you the best.