My daughters are both on the mild end of the spectrum.  The oldest has more problems socially than the youngest.  We finally got a diagnois for her when she was three.  We tired to get therapy for her much earlier, but the so called experts just kept telling us some kids take longer to speak (she was 4 when she finally started talking instead of screaming all the time.) Kids ave trantrums (not 12+ hour ones that lead to convulsions!)  Finally, she threw a tantrum at the doctor's office which convinced him to give us the recommendation for therapy our insurance required to get help.  Four years and much therapy later, our dd is very nearly exactly like NT kids, although, she has problems maing friends and in social situations. 

We homeschool her because the schools here are terrible and we do not want her to go through the same experiences (all bad) we have heard about other kids with autism having in the public schools.  We try to emphasize good matters.  I am hoping by homeschooling her and trying to control the situations she is in with other kids , she will have good experiences and form positive relationships.  It took me a long time to accept that although she likes other kids she can take them or leave them.  Family and ideas mean more to her than friends.  Friends were super important to me as a kid, so it is hard for me to understand this take 'em or leave 'em mentality she has.

I have allowed my religious family to talk to her about their beliefs in god.  She is confused about why people believe in statues.  She told me about a month ago, "God is a statue.  Grandma prays to a statue.:  I thought it was hiliarious.

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I have problems sleeping for the same reason. It's very hard for me to slow my mind down to sleep - especially if something is bothering me.

Here's more information on Grote Reber, one of the father's of radio astronomy:

Here's one I like better because it goes into more detail on his work as a radio astronomer:

I enjoyed the article at the NRAO site more, but it doesn't go into any detail about his personal life. Neither went into his experiments with peas. I wonder why...

You can get some idea why I think Mr. Reber could have autism. He was very dedicated to his studies. Plus when did he ever sleep? He had a day job throughout his working years.

The Wikipedia article is wrong. The Reber's telescope at the NRAO is the original. It is not a replica. The Jansky telescope is a replica of the original. The original is at Bell Labs. I spent 8 years researching these guys for my thesis.

I get so annoyed when I find things in encyclopedia entries that are wrong. i like things to be correct. My dad was the same way. Maybe I have autism, too! I did spend hours as a child thinking about words... Just thinking about them - how they were spelled, what did they sound like, what did the mean. Hmm... Well, when other people told me I should have never gotten my girls the MMR shots and they wouldn't have autism, I have always said it was genetic.

I can point to more than one person in both my husband and my family whom i think maybe has it undiagnosed.
I can point to more than one person in both my husband and my family whom i think maybe has it undiagnosed.

Same here! In hindsight, I realize that most of my family were on the spectrum, including both my parents. Unfortunately for me, that made them unable to understand that I had different needs and desires than they had, and it made them unable to have a caring relationship towards me. They usually couldn't see that I would experience situations differently than they did. As I grew older, and I became less and less like what they wanted their son to be, they became increasingly aggressive and controlling. I have now cut all contact with my family. I can also see that one of my great-aunts, who was on the spectrum, was married to someone who was most interested in the power he could have over her. I could say much more about my family ...

Grace - you're probably aware that there is a continuum between the autism spectrum and "normal" - i.e. at the mild end of the spectrum, it's not clear whether someone is mildly ASD or is "normal" with ASD traits, it seems impossible to draw a clear boundary between the two categories, there is so much variety between individuals. You could well be one of those people close to the border. You've said things that suggest that you may be on the spectrum, and you've said other things that suggest that you're not.
I loved the graveyard shift for that very reason.

As for racing thoughts preventing sleep, Valerian root has always worked well for me. Mild, but effective and zero side effects. It doesn't even actually make me sleepy; just helps my racing thoughts to level out a bit so I can get to sleep.

On the prescription end, I was recently prescribed Clonazepam as an emergency anti-anxiety. It works almost too well: This is the first drug that I fear I could become addicted to with just a little less willpower!
As for racing thoughts preventing sleep, Valerian root has always worked well for me. Mild, but effective and zero side effects. It doesn't even actually make me sleepy; just helps my racing thoughts to level out a bit so I can get to sleep.

I'll keep this in mind for possible future use! Thank you for the tip, Jo.
Hope it works, or you find something else safe and affordable that does. Very, very annoying trying to sleep with a thousand random thoughts using your brain for a speed track!
Very good metaphor!

Night shift was always my favorite when I worked for AIG, Inc. as a Medical Travel Assistance Coordinator in their 24/7 Houston-based call-center...LOVED IT, and we got a higher pay differential than day-shifters as an added incentive.

I am Aspie, and I was married divorced, no kids; thank goodness.  And I have had other girlfriends...not many, and few of long duration...but I did have them...I guess that means I'm one of the "lucky ones" among many Aspergian men.

I've just never felt like I would make a good father, and though my wife and I did conceive once, she miscarried early on and I've always regarded that as a "blessing-in-disguise" (purely metaphorically speaking).  I just turned 40 this year and am about to turn again and I still at times feel like a teen boy.

I try to explain Asperger's to some NT's by stating "Remember how awkward you felt as a teenager?? Imagine that NEVER getting better and that's sort of what A.S. feels like...."

Bit of exaggeration there, as it has gotten a *little* better, but only just a little.  I now have the confidence in relationships that my peers had when they were 16-17.  Which makes me a 40 year old with the relationship skill set of a mature NT 18 year old on a good day.  Maybe.

My ex-wife was NT, however, and, as it turned out, not quite as free from her religious past as I'd gambled she would be given her obvious intellect.  Alas, as I like to joke, she left me for her old flame, Jesus Christ.  She wanted me to join in and make it a threesome but I said no effing way ;-)

My atheism wasn't an issue for her at first, but it became increasingly not ok with her has she fell back into a religious orbit.  I was by then a confident atheist and not going to budge.  It's only in hindsight that I can see the additional pressures and strains that being an undiagnosed Aspie put upon our marriage as well as everything else.

We had many conflicts over "sympathy" vs. "empathy", and clearly I could demonstrate deep, deep wells of sympathy, but she wanted a direct and immediate kind of empathy that only NTs seem able to perform and that left me baffled and confused and her deeply frustrated at my (to her) fear of intimacy and commitment, yada yada.

I'm wary of some parents of autistic/Aspie children in our local group, as some are backers of anti-vax quacks and such and that bugs the hell out of me.  I avoid starting flame wars on the local discussion group but just roll my eyes anytime anyone brings up Andrew Wakefield, et. al.  Even worse are the ones of a religious bent who think you can pray-away the autism--yeah, good luck with that; works about as well as praying away Teh Gay...which is to say, not at all.  The more nuanced religious ones will take a different tac and just say, well, God made my child that way, it's his will, so we have to discover and obey God's reason(s), etc.  Still makes me wanna to a face-palm, but perhaps not quite as hard as with the former aforementioned pray-away-ers.

Sorry if my contribution is a tangent at best...have enjoyed reading all of these threads...


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