Asperger’s Syndrome, a higher functioning autism spectrum disorder, is very misunderstood by the general population.
Asperger’s Syndrome, a higher functioning autism spectrum disorder, is very misunderstood by the general population. Here are 12 common myths regarding the condition and the people who have it:
MYTH: Everyone with Asperger’s Syndrome is a genius.
Fact: Some people with AS are geniuses, some are of average intelligence. Many are in the “above average” range, however.
MYTH: People with Asperger’s have no empathy for others.
Fact: Though Aspies may have trouble showing empathy, most do have the ability to care about other human beings.
MYTH: Aspies cannot form romantic relationships.
Fact: Though many aspies have trouble initiating romantic relationships and may have difficulty knowing what to do in a relationship, aspies can and do date, get married, and have children just like everyone else. It is important for aspies to find a partner who is able to be understanding of their condition and the idiosyncrasies that come with it. It is also important for aspies to make an effort to see things from their partner’s perspective.
MYTH: Only males can have Asperger’s Syndrome.
Fact: There are many females with the condition, though many females remain undiagnosed for a variety of reasons, including the fact that girls are better at blending in, and that some AS traits are seen as more socially acceptable in girls.
MYTH: Life is more difficult for Aspie males than females.
Fact: Females have a different set of challenges than males, such as being more likely to be taken advantage of by neurotypical males.
MYTH: Asperger’s is just an excuse to not be a part of society and it doesn’t actually exist.
Fact: Most aspies desperately want to be part of society, they just don’t know how to do it.
MYTH: Only children can have Asperger’s.
Fact: Though adults are able to develop better ways of coping and blending in with society, it is a lifelong condition. Many AS adults have trouble getting a formal diagnosis, as it wasn’t included in the DSM until 1994.
MYTH: All aspies are nerds, or all nerds are aspies.
Fact: Many aspies have interests that can be considered nerdy, but not everyone who considers themselves “nerds” have Asperger’s.
MYTH: All people with Asperger’s Syndrome want to be cured.
Fact: Many aspies are against finding a cure, as their aspie traits are an integral part of who they are.
MYTH: People with Asperger’s Syndrome are mentally retarded.
Fact: To be diagnosed with Asperger’s, an individual must have at least normal intelligence.
MYTH: Asperger’s is a disease.
Fact: Asperger’s is simply a neurological difference.
MYTH: Asperger’s is caused by vaccines.
Fact: The theory that vaccinations cause autism and AS has been disproved by a number of studies. It is now thought to be caused by genetics.
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