It's Asperger's Syndrome

If you're reading this article, chances are your child/student has just been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome (or there's a possibility they will be!) and you're searching the internet for any information that may help you make sense of the diagnosis. I'm fairly certain that you left the Paediatricians' office with just that one piece of information – “Your child has Asperger's Syndrome”. I'm confident you didn't receive an information kit containing:
• In depth explanation of the characteristics of Asperger's Syndrome;
• contact details for Asperger's Syndrome Support groups;
• claim forms for Disability allowance/payment;
• list of ASD Support Service Providers e.g. Occupational Therapist;
• contacts for Respite Services;
• written recommendation to your child's school of minimum accommodations required by your child with Asperger's Syndrome;
• list of beneficial therapies for Asperger's Syndrome;
• dietary requirements of Asperger's Syndrome;
• list of proven strategies to reduce meltdown/tantrums;
• advice on what/how to tell your child.

As parents/teachers of children with Asperger's Syndrome we are expected to source all this information on our own. And so begins the Asperger's Syndrome journey – endless hours spent trawling the Internet; reading every book in your local library and filing every piece of information relevant to Asperger's Syndrome in your head for future reference. Only when you've upskilled and become enormously knowledgeable about Asperger's Syndrome can you finally match up the characteristics of AS with how those characteristics present in your child/student. Once the initial shock and disbelief settles, then you begin negotiating with your child's school (or parents of the child) over the best support strategies and accommodations to implement to give the AS child the greatest chance of success. This process usually takes somewhere between 10 and 18 months after diagnosis to complete.

We're so busy upskilling ourselves as ourselves as parents/teachers during this time that we often overlook the emotional wellbeing of the Asperger's Syndrome child themselves.
How might that child be feeling after diagnosis?

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