Those with Down Syndrome look different. You can tell by looking at them that they have a mental disability. Those with low-functioning autism look different. You can tell by looking at them that they have a mental disability. Most of those with Asperger Syndrome don’t really look different. You can’t tell by looking at them that they have a mental disability.
I was informed that there is a possibility that AS may not be in the next edition of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) So, the question at hand should be answered. That question is: “Is AS really a disability that needs to be addressed in the DSM?”
Yes. AS is a mental disability. In most cases, it’s not severe enough to hinder a productive, independant life. Is it severe enough to be in the DSM? Yes. Life is difficult enough with being diagnosed. How much more difficult would it be if there was no diagnosis? After having been diagnosed, my parents and I dealt with things differently. Everything changed after that. We discovered that I need to learn social things like I would a different language. Textbook learning. I need to hear it, read it, and practice it. We wouldn’t have been able to make the right adjustments and make life easier for all of us if AS hadn’t been in the DSM and hadn’t been a known mental disability.
I look back and remember what life was like before being diagnosed and I never want to go back. I don’t want to go back to the confusion, the anger, and the chaos. I don’t want to go back to having very few friends and many issues. I don’t want to go back to constant meltdowns. I don’t want people in the future to have to go through what I did because they don’t know about the existence if AS.
The answer: “Yes. Asperger Syndrome definitely should be included in the next edition of the DSM.