Case Study

Adult With Autism/Asperger’s

Adult woman with autism looking serious with her hand on the side of her face

Katherine, 35, had difficulty holding a job. She had a hard time getting anywhere on time, and had difficulty focusing her attention. She got extremely nervous around other people. She was very depressed and felt that she could not be successful in her life. She had wanted to go to school, but gave up because it felt too overwhelming. She worried about going anywhere new. She had sensory challenges that made her anxious, including being in crowds and certain kinds of lights and sounds.

When Katherine came to see me, she told me she thought she had autism. She had been reading online and she thought it described her to a tee.  Once we clarified that she was on the autism spectrum, she was very relieved to know there was a reason for the turmoil she felt her whole life. And she was thrilled to know there was a name for it!

As worked together, Katherine began to understand how she learned to cope as a child with the way she processes information. She said that she always felt different when she was growing up. No one knew how much she was suffering or how difficult it was for her. She learned how to behave socially by watching other kids, and through television and movies. She said she figured how to pretend, and to act how she saw others act, but it often made no sense to her.

How Her Anxiety Affected Her

Katherine shared about the anxiety she had and that it was difficult for her to make friends. She did not like to talk on the phone or make any calls. Thinking about going  to college gave her a lot of anxiety about being around other students, and her learning challenges due to her problems focusing. In social situations, she never knew what to say, and she was afraid she would say something wrong. She was sure others would notice that she was different or laugh at her. In fact, she was so nervous in social situations, she often did blurt out phrases that were out of context, and then people would look at her, which made her even more nervous.

Strategies to Reduce Her Anxiety

Katherine and I worked on strategies that helped her reduce her stress and anxiety. She learned to plan ahead when she needed to do something that made her nervous, such as writing down what she should say before calling her doctors office. Although it was difficult for her, she went to the college resource center to get assistance. They helped her with adaptations for assignments, and made arrangements for test taking that helped her to be successful.

The Strategies Were Effective – She was Able to Go Back to School

We talked about how new situations and people made her very nervous, but that after awhile, she gradually got more comfortable. So she knew she would be uncomfortable starting school, but that those feelings would gradually get less and less. She knew that if she got too anxious, she could leave the classroom. So, she sat in a seat close to the door. After the first week of school, she was much more confident about being able to pass the class and continue with her education. She did say that having support helped her get through the hardest times.

She Addressed Her Sensory Processing Problems

Katherine learned to identify her sensitivities to crowds, bright lights, and noise. Being prepared helped her not be so worried about going places. She decided that wearing sunglasses indoors, and listening to soft music through earphones helped her tolerate a variety of environments. She did decide to meet with an occupational therapist for an assessment and treatment for her sensory processing disorder.

Progress and Follow Up

Katherine was able to make a couple friends through their mutual interest in astronomy, and they attended lectures together. She met with me periodically when she felt overwhelmed and when she had changes in her life.

If you would like some help and guidance with being on the autism spectrum, feel free to contact us.

Case Study

Adult With Autism/Asperger’s

Adult woman with autism looking serious with her hand on the side of her face

Katherine, 35, had difficulty holding a job. She had a hard time getting anywhere on time, and had difficulty focusing her attention. She got extremely nervous around other people. She was very depressed and felt that she could not be successful in her life. She had wanted to go to school, but gave up because it felt too overwhelming. She worried about going anywhere new. She had sensory challenges that made her anxious, including being in crowds and certain kinds of lights and sounds.

When Katherine came to see me, she told me she thought she had autism. She had been reading online and she thought it described her to a tee.  Once we clarified that she was on the autism spectrum, she was very relieved to know there was a reason for the turmoil she felt her whole life. And she was thrilled to know there was a name for it!

As worked together, Katherine began to understand how she learned to cope as a child with the way she processes information. She said that she always felt different when she was growing up. No one knew how much she was suffering or how difficult it was for her. She learned how to behave socially by watching other kids, and through television and movies. She said she figured how to pretend, and to act how she saw others act, but it often made no sense to her.

How Her Anxiety Affected Her

Katherine shared about the anxiety she had and that it was difficult for her to make friends. She did not like to talk on the phone or make any calls. Thinking about going  to college gave her a lot of anxiety about being around other students, and her learning challenges due to her problems focusing. In social situations, she never knew what to say, and she was afraid she would say something wrong. She was sure others would notice that she was different or laugh at her. In fact, she was so nervous in social situations, she often did blurt out phrases that were out of context, and then people would look at her, which made her even more nervous.

Strategies to Reduce Her Anxiety

Katherine and I worked on strategies that helped her reduce her stress and anxiety. She learned to plan ahead when she needed to do something that made her nervous, such as writing down what she should say before calling her doctors office. Although it was difficult for her, she went to the college resource center to get assistance. They helped her with adaptations for assignments, and made arrangements for test taking that helped her to be successful.

The Strategies Were Effective – She was Able to Go Back to School

We talked about how new situations and people made her very nervous, but that after awhile, she gradually got more comfortable. So she knew she would be uncomfortable starting school, but that those feelings would gradually get less and less. She knew that if she got too anxious, she could leave the classroom. So, she sat in a seat close to the door. After the first week of school, she was much more confident about being able to pass the class and continue with her education. She did say that having support helped her get through the hardest times.

She Addressed Her Sensory Processing Problems

Katherine learned to identify her sensitivities to crowds, bright lights, and noise. Being prepared helped her not be so worried about going places. She decided that wearing sunglasses indoors, and listening to soft music through earphones helped her tolerate a variety of environments. She did decide to meet with an occupational therapist for an assessment and treatment for her sensory processing disorder.

Progress and Follow Up

Katherine was able to make a couple friends through their mutual interest in astronomy, and they attended lectures together. She met with me periodically when she felt overwhelmed and when she had changes in her life.

If you would like some help and guidance with being on the autism spectrum, feel free to contact us.

Case Study

Adult With Autism/Asperger’s

Adult woman with autism looking serious with her hand on the side of her face

Katherine, 35, had difficulty holding a job. She had a hard time getting anywhere on time, and had difficulty focusing her attention. She got extremely nervous around other people. She was very depressed and felt that she could not be successful in her life. She had wanted to go to school, but gave up because it felt too overwhelming. She worried about going anywhere new. She had sensory challenges that made her anxious, including being in crowds and certain kinds of lights and sounds.

When Katherine came to see me, she told me she thought she had autism. She had been reading online and she thought it described her to a tee.  Once we clarified that she was on the autism spectrum, she was very relieved to know there was a reason for the turmoil she felt her whole life. And she was thrilled to know there was a name for it!

As worked together, Katherine began to understand how she learned to cope as a child with the way she processes information. She said that she always felt different when she was growing up. No one knew how much she was suffering or how difficult it was for her. She learned how to behave socially by watching other kids, and through television and movies. She said she figured how to pretend, and to act how she saw others act, but it often made no sense to her.

How Her Anxiety Affected Her

Katherine shared about the anxiety she had and that it was difficult for her to make friends. She did not like to talk on the phone or make any calls. Thinking about going  to college gave her a lot of anxiety about being around other students, and her learning challenges due to her problems focusing. In social situations, she never knew what to say, and she was afraid she would say something wrong. She was sure others would notice that she was different or laugh at her. In fact, she was so nervous in social situations, she often did blurt out phrases that were out of context, and then people would look at her, which made her even more nervous.

Strategies to Reduce Her Anxiety

Katherine and I worked on strategies that helped her reduce her stress and anxiety. She learned to plan ahead when she needed to do something that made her nervous, such as writing down what she should say before calling her doctors office. Although it was difficult for her, she went to the college resource center to get assistance. They helped her with adaptations for assignments, and made arrangements for test taking that helped her to be successful.

The Strategies Were Effective – She was Able to Go Back to School

We talked about how new situations and people made her very nervous, but that after awhile, she gradually got more comfortable. So she knew she would be uncomfortable starting school, but that those feelings would gradually get less and less. She knew that if she got too anxious, she could leave the classroom. So, she sat in a seat close to the door. After the first week of school, she was much more confident about being able to pass the class and continue with her education. She did say that having support helped her get through the hardest times.

She Addressed Her Sensory Processing Problems

Katherine learned to identify her sensitivities to crowds, bright lights, and noise. Being prepared helped her not be so worried about going places. She decided that wearing sunglasses indoors, and listening to soft music through earphones helped her tolerate a variety of environments. She did decide to meet with an occupational therapist for an assessment and treatment for her sensory processing disorder.

Progress and Follow Up

Katherine was able to make a couple friends through their mutual interest in astronomy, and they attended lectures together. She met with me periodically when she felt overwhelmed and when she had changes in her life.

If you would like some help and guidance with being on the autism spectrum, feel free to contact us.