Asperger's - Wallingford,CT

Updated on July 02, 2010
L.B. asks from Berwick, ME
7 answers

What signs would I look for in a 12 year old boy, if I susupect mild aspergers?

My 12 year old son does not initiate activities with other kids, but he is social if they come to him. The other kids seem to like him and invite him to parties and outside to play, but he will not initiate the social activity.

My husband is currently undergoing diagnosis for possible aspergers, can someone with aspergers have children without aspergers? Does anyone know of any resources for spouses married to someone with aspergers? I am feeling pretty lost.

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answers from Columbus on

Hey L.,

Tony Attwood is the Asperger guru, you might check his books for tips. The person who is evaluating your husband would be the best source for a support group in your area, and I would imagine that as asperger awareness grows and the population ages, there will be more support groups for adults and the people who are invloved with them.

Asperger, and autism, are very inheritable, so it is more likely that your son has it if his father does, but it is not a forgone conclusion.

Our 18 year old aspie does not initiate any social contacts, but is quite happy to particiapte when others call her and is social on her level and within her scope of interest. She is not able to change her interest to meet the demands of a social situation that is not already to her liking, and has little ablity to adjust to anyone elses point of view, but she has a fairly large group of like minded individuals who continue to call her for social outtings.

She is just as happy to be home alone as she is to be with other people, but she has many other issues beyond this, so if failing to make social contact is his only issue, he would probably not meet the criteria for asperger or any other ASD. There would be language issues (pragmatic understanding primarily for Aspies) non verbal communication issues, some sensory and motor issues, and most aspies will meet all the diagnositc criteria for ADHD. Secondary psychological issues are common, anxiety and depression are frequently comorbid. Aspies must have at least an average IQ, an many will have a higher than average IQ but they will all have large gaps between many of the subtests, some being very, very high (usually fluid reasoning-mathmatic ablity) and some being very, very low, usually social reasoning scores or pragmatic langague abilties.

One hallmark of Asperger is an obsessive interest that is beyond typical knowlege. Trains, TV, pokemon, animals, bugs, science fiction, comic book characters, a movie or TV personality, batteries, clocks, maps, garden equipment; the list is as endless as the people who have asperger syndrome. People with Asperger are likely to monolouge about thier subject of interest and change the subject to thier interest and may corner people who are younger or older and capitalize converstaions about this one topic, failing to notice when they have bored thier converstaion partner. They will continue to replay this pattern, even when it is unsucessful, over and over again. Children with Asperger generally have difficulty relating well to peers, and are more comfortable with younger children or adults.

With our aspie, she has emotions, eye contact, and uses voice inflction. However, she does not have typical uses for any of these things. She may look someone in the eye, but she fails to see that they are angry or bored, uses voice inflection that she has learned (at inappropriate times, or goes over board) and can be very emotional, though she does not apply other people's emotions to her own understanding, because her emotions are quite different in scope and concequence to a typical persons. This can be quite confusing, as many people have heard (inaccurately) that autistic people "can't" look you in the eye, don't have any emotions, can't be empethetic, and have zero voice inflection. The diagnostic criteria for these issues only provides that these things not be typical, not that they be absent. Out daughter is empathetic to the degree that she feels emotions, and her intervention has tought her many appropriate responses that she knows by rote, but they are still not completly typical.

It is also possible that your son has some "shaddow" issues related to asperger, if your husband has it, and would not meet the whole diagnositic criteria. He could still bennefit from therapies for the issues that you see, a social skills group or class might be helpful, but chances are, if he is happy with the status quo, it may not change much (ours is perfectly happy!)


3 moms found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

My 5 year old son was diagnosed with high functioning asperger's syndrome when he was 3 years old. He too plays but does not initiate play.

First off, you are NOT alone!!!! And good for your hubby seeking a proper diagnosis for himself. Knowledge is power and knowing oneself better is always a great thing.

There is an excellent book that really answered my many questions -

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answers from Los Angeles on

Martha gave a very thorough answer. I don't have much to add. I have a 6 year old daughter with Asperger's. She was diagnosed at 4.5. She has many more issues than your son. Not only did she not initiate play, she didn't play interactively with other kids hardly at all. The ones she did play with were probably also on the spectrum themselves! LOL (Aspies seem to be able to sniff each other out and can play with each as well as typical kids do). She also has huge tantrums if things do not go the way she wants and with transitions. While I was reading Tony Attwood's book to learn more, I realized I had many aspects of Asperger's as well, both the good and the bad aspects (yes, there are good ones: intelligence, great memory, early reader, etc.). Like your son, I probably wasn't the best at initiating activities. But I always had friends, did well in college and my career, and have had a happy, well-balanced life.

My advice is to read up on Asperger's and get your son help if he needs it. If there is only one area that's deficient, you might want to help encourage him in this area, but that might be all he needs!

P.S. Galiski: you stopped eating a few years back?


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answers from Jamestown on

Here's a good site to read about Asperger's.

I had a 13 year old client and a10 year old client with this diagnosis long with a few others.

Hope this helps. I was going to type out the DSM-IV-TR diagnostic criteria, but it' too early in the morning and a lot of information to type on my first cup of coffee.


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answers from Sacramento on

Mom, I would start by researching aspergers on internet and in books from library and our local book store. I know a nice mom who friends and I think may have it too, undiagosed, very bright woman, she is married w/kids and has good job (not interacting with others much in the job in finance) but often she seems awkward and uncomfortable in many social settings. HEr awkwardness is not in a shy way so she seems to have overcome it as an adult. She has son who is autistic too, I think I have read there may be a genetic factor in autism, but I know there is good treatment available and many symptoms can me helped. Curious how your husband came to be tested for it, I wish him the best. Good luck to your family

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boise on

Did you know that this is one of the symptoms of heavy metal poisoning? I'm not saying that is what your child has, but I am saying that toxin and poison is our envoronment DO affect the central nervous system and brain.

Autism and metal ( I think it is mercury) poisoning have the very same symptoms- LINE FOR LINE.

When I stopped eating a few years back, and I shed a bunch of weight, My social shyness and inability to communicate drastically changed for the better. The anxiety waned and my though processes were better. I was finally able to keep up with convwersations in a larger group. (usually my brain couldnt process that quickly to keep on top of it.) I contribute it to my body being able to detox things out and heal during that period.



answers from New York on

I was just curious why your husband felt the need to be diagnosed? And since your son seems happy and has friends why do you want him diagnosed? How will that change either of their lives? Why can't we all march to a different drummer and be unique without having labels?

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