Do you tell a child they have/might have Asperger’s Syndrome?

Parents face all manner of difficult decisions regarding their children, and those whose children have special needs have a load more on top.. One of the things I have come across quiet a lot with parents of children who have (or may have) Aspergers is whether to tell the child about it.

Some feel that the labelling will make the condition worse.

Some just want to want their children to be as  normal as possible and not be bullied

And of course, one of the things about Aspergers is that each and every individual with the condition is unique and so will be effected differently.

Our son was 10 years old before he finally got a diagnosis. He was having trouble relating to others and finding it difficult at school. He felt hated, the World was against him. He obviously saw a lot of people to get his diagnosis too (and he’s extremely bright and inquisitive so wanted to know why). So we decided that it was the right thing for OUR son to tell him. We told him before he was diagnosed that this maybe the reason he had trouble making the sense of the World around him and the people in it. That sometimes he needed to learn what came naturally to others in order to get people to behave in a way he’d prefer.

I still feel this is what was best for him. Now possibly  faced with the same question again for my youngest I couldn’t say it would be the same. He’s only 3 and so really doesn’t need to be told anything – he’s just who he is. If later it turns out he definitely does and we feel it would benefit him to know then of course we would.

I know a lady who when she attends an Aspergers Support Group her son thinks she goes to make the tea as he doesn’t want to believe he has it and doesn’t want to talk about it. Another lady felt her son was so borderline she’d rather he just live life as “normally” as possible.

So if you’re asking yourself whether to tell your child or not then you really have to just think about your child and what will be best for your situation. Good luck.

14 thoughts on “Do you tell a child they have/might have Asperger’s Syndrome?”

  1. I’ve also found its different for each child. When I tried to explain to my son that he had ASD, he couldn’t understand it or take it in so I backed off. With my daughter who has aspergers syndrome she was much more interested in learning about autism and aspergers and we had a really good chat about it. Now that she’s digested it all, she doesn’t want to discuss it openly and that’s fine as well. We only really talk about autism and aspergers when they need any particular help or support.

    PS I think your Thursday thought linky is a great idea and have just added something on outdoor play.

    Deb

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  2. Thank you for your great comment. Is there much of an age gap between the two children? Was it any different second time round?

    Thank you for adding a link – off to look.

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    • My son is 13 and I tried to discuss it with him when he was 10. My daughter is 10 and was diagnosed last year. It was only in the last few months that I’ve discussed it with her when she started to become very aware of her difficulties. She used to ask me whether I thought she was odd or normal so I realised it was time that we started to talk about her aspergers. It did help her. Deb

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  3. This is interesting because my friend (in her 40s) has just been told she might have Aspergers. When she told us this we weren’t shocked, it seems obvious to us, but she was horribly offended that we thought the diagnosis was right. it seems there is never a right moment to tell anyone.

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  4. My son has Asperger’s Syndrome. Sadly he was not diagnosed until he was an adult. Unfortunately, when he was younger, people were not aware of the syndrome. I wish they had been, because it would have made his younger life a lot more bearable. However, on the plus side he is now a super adult and happy being who he is. And we all love him to bits.

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  5. I think this answer would be unique to you and your son. I think it may be one of those times where it just hits you and you know your son will be ready for the answer. I send you my thoughts of strength.

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  6. I can’t speak on this from experience. Not only does my son not have anything like this at all, but noone that I’ve really had in my life has. But, I think that if my son did have something, especially something that caused his development to be different than his peers in any way, I would probably tell him. At least that way, there would be something to explain why. Knowledge is power. With that knowledge, he/we would be able to learn as much as possible about it and learn ways to work our lives to manage it. As for the really young ones, I would think that if they know it always, it would never be something foreign or unusual, but your point that it would most likely be different for each child is wise. Different people respond in different ways to things, and that is something that certainly must be taken into consideration.

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