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Old 08-19-2006, 09:58 AM   #1
9CatMom 9CatMom is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Santa Maria, CA, USA
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Re: Can children with mild Autism grow up to be normal adults?

I have posted similar things many times before. I am a self-diagnosed 41 year old woman with suspected Asperger's. I have managed to live a pretty successful life. I have a Master's in English, plus training in legal office systems. I have worked for four years at my local public library, collecting materials for the Interlibrary Loan. It is an ideal job for me because it utilizes my strengths and is something I can do largely on my own. However, I am looking to find a higher paying, full time job which utilizes similar skills. Another thing that helps me do this job well is a broad general knowledge range, which really helps when looking for music CDs and videos. I know the various genres and listen to a wide range of music, so that helps.

My main problems are shyness, social awkwardness, and low self-confidence. My main assets are a good character, intelligence, and a broad range of interests. My problems are very minor in comparison to those of some AS adults, but are very noticeable to me. I sometimes do and say dumb stuff that embarrasses me. I don't drive, but am working on it.

I think it is very possible for an AS adult to live a normal life. Some go on to live extraordinary ones. The greatest example of someone with AS traits who has gone on to live a successful, accomplished life is English runner and neurologist Roger Bannister. He reported in his book, The Four Minute Mile, feeling out of place when he was going to school Yet he went on to accomplish things I believe would not have been possible for his more "normal" contemporaries. His unique combination of attributes and interests, plus his obvious high intelligence, helped him succeed. His strong sense of character and kindness helped him become a loving husband, father, and grandfather and a loyal friend. By finding common ground in running with friends Chris Chataway, Chris Brasher, and Norris McWhirter, he formed friendships lasting over a half century. Roger Bannister is a great source of inspiration for me. "Nothing is impossible," has become a guiding phrase for my life too.

Some of the things I want to do seem pretty impossible right now, but I need to remember that many of the things I'm doing now seemed pretty impossible to believe just fifteen years ago. Some people didn't even think I was capable of anything, but they were wrong.