For the first of these I want to tackle the topic of diagnosis by a physician or mental health professional. I think diagnosis is the best place to start because it will allow us to actually communicate my expectations for this particular series. The question I pose to you, is it a positive thing or a negative thing that someone is diagnosed, are more options a good thing or a bad thing?
Now lets take the subject. For this particular subject we’re going to be talking about me, and two different mental health experts. Before we get too far into this I want to say that I will not be the contextual subject of every single Daily Dose of Society, but for right now, I work with what I have.
I have two different diagnosis stories, one story is that of obsessive compulsive personality disorder(OCPD), and the other is my autism diagnosis also known as ASD or Autism Spectrum Disorder. So I have a decision here, do I take the OCPD diagnosis or do I take the ASD first, the OCPD allows me to communicate with you in a negative light first, and leave off with a positive story, but we’re all about choices here so I am giving you the backstory. I could go positive to negative, the facts would even back it up because the middle of a story is traditionally forgotten when reading something or listening. Yet leaving with a negative story would maybe turn you off from reading the next blog, unless you’re just a person who randomly found my site, then we can get into what catches you attention more. Let’s go with OCPD first in this Daily Dose, comment, and tell me what you think of the flow, of course that is if you desire to.
My Social Workers first name was Sara, and to properly explain this diagnosis, we need to talk about the context behind OCPD. Doctor Google states that, “OCPD is a personality disorder that’s characterized by extreme perfectionism, orders, and neatness. People with OCPD will also feel a severe need to impose their own standards on their outside environment.” Okay so that’s a mouthful, and hysterical to me because what it is essentially saying is that every parent in some way has a form of OCPD. I get that a clinical OCPD is a more severe need to impress upon others and a profound effect on daily life but it cannot be lost on me that my sister, who helps her children, can be considered OCPD for the next few years. My diagnosis of OCPD was after six months of “Therapy” by a social worker. I sat in a room, vented about the week, and left, this was for six months. I was never questioned about the things I would expect to be questioned about in therapy. My thoughts, feelings, or desires for the actions that had taken place. Could it have been because I was expressing my thoughts, feelings, and desires the whole time without being told to? Sure, but a broken clock is right twice a day. I subjected myself to therapy if we look at it that way, I created my own detailed notes through my words, I expressed everything I possibly could for 6 months worth of 1 hour a week, then my social worker came along and decided it was a good idea to look in her DSM-V and diagnose me with OCPD. So for the next 2 years, I tried to understand that diagnosis.
What I mean by trying to understand that diagnosis is actually more important than what I consider the audacity of my Social Worker to just pull out a book and point to a problem without a proper understanding of what problem and assign it to me. Now that can totally be a symptom of the disorder according to my Social Worker, but where does the disorder, and the desire to understand differ? Well now that devil, is in the minute details that can only be understood if time is taken to understand them. I won’t bore you with the nitty gritty of everything that happened so to make it short. I started learning more than I expected to about myself and about the disorder of OCPD. The key to this would be the inability to change your mind on certain ingrained topics, and OCPD is a subconscious reflex according to the people that I spoke to. If you’ve read my blog, you’ll know that subconscious reflexes are the first thing I question, and ingrained idea’s are the second thing I question everyday with new information flowing at my face from everywhere. For a person who isn’t as hyper self-aware as myself, that diagnosis, can have two different effects, if it is handled with care that person might have a better understanding of their life and move forward, if it is just handed off like a basketball as it was in my situation? Well then it only spirals out of control. This is not a question, it is a fact, you can see it in the daily work social workers do, and psychologists. Their fear of diagnosing you comes from those types of diagnoses. Laws have been passed on this very issue. What would have happened if I got violent because I couldn’t understand why my reality had to be different, when someone gives me information equivalent to the game winning pass at the end of the most important Super Bowl ever, and I have never played football. That happens all the time.
So what was different about the Diagnosis for the Autism? Well everything, the psychologist helped me understand what it meant to be Autistic, and what I was in for, especially what I was capable of. See the trick to my diagnosis is that there was an absence of data to diagnosis me, too much absence with the communication about the difficulties I was dealing with, and how I dealt with them, allowed the psychologist to look at the data, and say, “Yup, you’re Autistic, now let’s deal with it.” From that moment we’ve started to understand the hyper sensitivities, the hyper self awareness. Hell until that diagnosis in September, I considered myself to be functionally unintelligent because it was never expressed to me that the ability to process the things that I process is an exception, not the rule.
So two different diagnoses, not fleshed out the way I want, or directed to the point perfectly, there are so many details I could put in there, but that would just muddy the water. This will develop, get shorter, and more to the point, but enjoy for now!