Autism and the DSM-5: Diagnostic Criteria (Section D)

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Autism and the DSM 5: Part 5 – Diagnostic Criteria: Section D

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Re: “That is because they are thoughts I am not proud of — it is judgmental and inappropriate.”

    This is what I call “the gray area”. This is all the inbetween the black and white – inbetween the diagnosed autistic, the non-diagnosed and non-autistic. Our society has become so used to framing any issue as having only two sides. That makes everything inbetween harder for us to see. I think that has a big influence on the tendency for any of us to jump to a judgement too soon, we are not trained to see the gray area in between the two sides and all the subtleties. (heck, take congress for example)

    I hope that someday people will stop automatically attaching the stigma, and be able to use the term “autistic” like any other way to describe a person – left-handed, athletic, tall, short, blonde, brunette, etc.

  2. Posted by Tony on September 21, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    The whole stigma subject is rather weird seen from an autistic perspective. One of the differences I found very important btwn myself and NTs (and I saw it confirmed when I was in an Aspergers support group) is that I don’t stigmatize. I decide what I think on a matter. And sometimes I don’t decide. Maybe I don’t know. New facts may arrive. On the other hand, I’m very good at describing what I have seen, like representing a landscape I see again in front of me. But description and judgment are separated. An NT is not like that at all. Stigma colors everything. It illuminates the world somehow, and it lets an NT do things without deciding to do things. It’s like judgments driving a decision, subconsciously. Frankly, I don’t get it. Stigma is much more than habit, it’s a whole social discriminator. An issue when I was a teen was an “effeminate walk” I had. What the hell is that? It was a stigma trigger. Anytime I might “show it”, I could be called a faggot. I saw no significance in it at all. Everyone else did. That’s what a stigma feels like to someone who doesn’t stigmatize. It’s like a random observation a person can lose their job for saying or being. You have to memorize it to reduce its visibility and impact. I also didn’t care about being called a faggot, which was also a problem. At one point I would just call it a misclassification. I read a lot about it, but a big part of it didn’t really fit.

  3. Thank you very much for writing this series, it is very well written and clear. I am not usually a very diagnosis-focussed person. I have had mental diagnoses when I was young and in fact were in a mental hospital for period of time – over a year, but did not even read the criteria for the diagnoses I was given and am even today not 100% sure what the diagnoses meant precisely. I have only many years later done a bit of research about the main diagnosis I think I had (pretty sure), and realised how off target it was.

    I have had a rather alienated relation with DSM-whatever too although I read it, but now I understand not only DSM-5 but this whole diagnostic criteria regime much better and can see how it applies … with DSM-5, and especially with the way you have explained it, I can see that I do in fact clearly meet all the criteria. DSM-IV was more confusing and ambiguous and I was in doubt about it for a long time. I could see how my mind operates in a similar way to aspies whose blogs et.c. I read online, and to other things I read about autism, and how I’m struggling with many of the same issues, but I could not see how that related to the official criteria… or at least I was in doubt and confused about what they meant. Now it is much more clear.

  4. […] Autism and the DSM-5: Diagnostic Criteria (Section D): Section D looks at how much of an impairment in daily living the symptoms cause. […]

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