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To suggest my husband be tested for autism(55 Posts)
My DH and I have agreed that he is very likely to be autistic. We are mid 30s, young family, stable jobs etc but he does experience some degree of difficulty, especially in work, as a result of these autistic traits.
AIBU to suggest he seek a formal diagnosis?
What health/social benefits could this give, being diagnosed later in life? Or is he better letting it lie?
What benefit would a diagnoses be? Is there someway he it might help him? (eg by getting reasonable adjustments for work?)
What traits does he have? I diagnose autism for a living.
Oh gosh I'm in a similar boat. I have no idea how to diagnose or if it would benefit either of us. I hope @countessfrog can help you (and me)
My GP told me it wasn't worth pursuing diagnosis but I'm in my 40s, successful, and coping and it's therefore of no benefit. I struggle with so much and always have done. Reading about autism and attention deficit made my whole life suddenly make sense. I hope you find some answers.
What traits does he have?
To be honest as someone diagnosed as an adult there is little support from the NHS.
You can access accommodations under the DDA for education and employment.
He could reach an understanding of his behaviour and access self help groups, but he could do that without the formal diagnosis. For me it was about understanding myself and putting my experiences into context, instead of just being seen as an oddball I know there is a reason for my difficulties.
I've wondered if I am... But see no benefit to finding out. The best that could come is "9h so this is why I suck at friendships" but in the long run, who really cares why🤷 Knowing won't fix it for me.
I imagine a better use of his time would be to make a list (with you, if that would be helpful) of the areas where he struggles, then formulate a strategy to address each one. You may be able to help him come up with ideas, or maybe there's information or a support group online for people dealing with similar problems.
That is, if his difficulties are severe enough to make all that seem worthwhile.
Yeah do it. I got tested for something I suspected I had for over a decade. And the answer was yes. I felt relieved. I had a explanation to why I am the way I am Plus I got so much help from then on to guide me via certain paths. My life has been easier and better since.
It might be worth it as autism has a strong genetic component: www.webmd.com/brain/autism/news/20190717/autism-largely-caused-by-genetics-not-environment-study#1
I think so as it would give him answers as to why he struggles. And that it is causing problems at work is another good reason. I suspect I have ADHD and am considering speaking to someone although I have reached a point where I am at peace with “being really weird” and now I openly say “I struggle with X and Y” and I just accept it because I’m mid-40s but you’re younger so it could be worth it.
Does he think being able to 'label' his difficulties will help colleagues make adjustments / be more understanding?
e.g. 'I have autism and take things very literally. So it would help me if you could be very clear in what you say and always say what you mean.'
It can give your employers, friends, colleagues an understanding in to why you might have difficulties with certain things. It may open some help or support. Lots of people have some autistic traits, it doesn’t mean they’re autistic though.
There are lots of blogs/fb pages out there from adults diagnosed late on and how it helps them or makes them feel. It might be worth a look. Diagnosis can take a long time and can involve seeing multiple professionals, it’s not a test.
I have an autistic child who is high functioning, support is minimal. I spend time looking for information myself online.
It makes me so cross when we have adults in clinic whose GP has said it’s not worth pursuing. It’s important to them to know.
Following this as I've considered it myself but wasn't sure if there was any point.
Same boat here with DH. He is so bright but struggles with work interactions in particular and I think having a diagnosis might help them support/understand him better but this may be wishful thinking.
My dad was diagnosed as an adult. It helped him understand why he struggled in some areas. Also at work it allowed work to understand him and make adjustments in terms of timings, avoiding sudden changes and having allowance for cooling off. He had masked it for years and had a mental health episode. So it all came out.
The oldest person we’ve diagnosed is 70.
I diagnosed myself - while my teenage children were being diagnosed at CAMHS it was strongly suggested to me that if I were to seek it for myself I’d be a shoo-in and reading up about the subject was like a light going on. Me, described, minutely. Everything fell into place. Such a relief. Maybe an acceptance of his autism is all he needs.
I would feel bad going to a support group if I hadn't been formally diagnosed. I'm of the thinking that if it's not impeding his ability to live life then he doesn't need to be diagnosed and could just go forward with online research into how to help him but if it is causing issues that create issues in his life then you should get him formally diagnosed so that if you ever need more help then the doorways are a bit more open for you both.
Diagnosis or not, any difficulties he has will still be there. I’d suggest that trying to work out ways to mitigate or cope with those difficulties would be a good approach. He could even take the assumption that he is autistic and look at strategies geared towards autistic people.
I don’t have experience of being diagnosed as an adult, I was diagnosed as a child. There doesn’t seem to be any particular benefits to being diagnosed - I don’t think most people I know, know that I have a diagnosis and I don’t tend to offer that information out because you never know how it’ll be received. I’d say the only potential benefit is that then he would ‘know’ for sure, if that’s important to him. But I reiterate that it won’t magically fix any difficulties he has. There’s certainly little in the way of “official” support (NHS etc).
In essence, I wouldn’t dissuade him if he feels it’s important for him. But I would try to ensure he doesn’t have false expectations of what a diagnosis could achieve. It’s all very individual.
I’ll also add that many, many people have autistic traits, but are not clinically autistic.
It depends on whether the diagnosis is going to help improve things dramatically. I suspect I have autism after my son went through the assessments, it allowed me to understand what autism is. Every assessment I could put my self right in there, I started remembering stuff from childhood too. Looking back now it should have been obvious but I'm 45 and back then unless it was very severe it probably wouldnt have been picked up on.
I wo t be going through assessment for formal diagnosis, I have learnt about autism, that and age has helped me adapt a bit and not to give myself a hard time if I'm not fitting in.
I struggled when younger but now with a lot more knowledge and understanding of autism its much easier to the point where formal assessment wouldn't be worthwhile. I'd rather they'd focus their time on people who are struggling.
There isn't a support service for adults in the NHS just diagnostic. You'd be better off getting a diagnosis then paying for a private OT or psychologist depending on the areas of difficulty to help think about strategies to improve functioning.
I realise you could only comment on likelihood but if I were to list a few of my dh ways -
Likes to wear the same clothes every day so owns 7 pairs of exactly the same trousers, ditto shoes always the same when he needs a new pair. We've been together many years, he's never had a friend on a one to one basis, they are always my friendship group we see. Doesn't care if he sees close family members, mother, siblings etc, sees no reason / need to contact them to check if ok . His needs are above everyone elses, eg. If we have said to someone that we will meet them at a certain time - he needs constant reminders that he needs to stop what he is doing and we need to leave to be at appointment.
Finds it hard to follow dramas, or films - will often ask me what's going to happen next. Doesn't read fiction, can't see the point as it's not real.
If doing DIY, everything has to be right even if wrong by a few mm ,in his head is a disaster. Is not huggy, does not understand emotions very well, can be blunt in conversations . Does not laugh at comedians / sit coms etc.
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