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Aspergers Among Us

Updated on November 2, 2013

Clay Marzo,

Clay Marzo is the most innovative and fascinating surfer in the world.  Diagnosed with Aspergers in 2007.
Clay Marzo is the most innovative and fascinating surfer in the world. Diagnosed with Aspergers in 2007.
Albert Einsteins trademark hair could be a symptom of Aspergers.
Albert Einsteins trademark hair could be a symptom of Aspergers.
Charles Darwin spent years studying subtle differences in the beaks of canaries, ultimately discovering the theory of evolution.  His singleminded focus is considered by experts to demonstrate Aspergers syndrome.
Charles Darwin spent years studying subtle differences in the beaks of canaries, ultimately discovering the theory of evolution. His singleminded focus is considered by experts to demonstrate Aspergers syndrome.


I passed a note to my classmate. It said: “I just love geeky people; he is so sweet when he smiles at his own corny jokes.” The reply I received said: “He is an idiot; I am going to straighten him out after class.” I responded: “Our teacher? Oh, you mean that guy who blurts out the answers before you have a chance? Don’t do anything, he has “Aspergers” syndrome.” His anger toward this other young man gave me an uneasy feeling as I thought about my son’s struggles in school.

My son has Aspergers Syndrome. It was not diagnosed until he was 13 years old. Aspergers is also referred to as “High Functioning Autism,” or “HFA.” I did not know my son before he was ten. He came to me as a foster child. My son had been gravely injured at the hands of his father. His father was incarcerated as a result and much attention had been paid to this little boy due to his injury. There was no research performed on his behavior history, and much of his abnormal behavior was attributed to his abusive family life. Daniel had many problems in school. He could not finish a day without a physical fight with another student and was very disruptive in class with very odd behaviors. At a psychiatric evaluation before he was 11, he was affirmatively diagnosed with ADHD, and possibly obsessive compulsive disorder to be determined after he was medicated for his ADHD symptoms.

The response of my friend to this young man who clearly does not mean to offend alarmed me. It is time for the rest of the world to work a little harder to accept differences, to understand that not everyone is able to conform to standard forms of conduct. There are many gifted people who have made our world a better place, who can figure things out that most cannot, and are profoundly irritating.

Aspergers syndrome did not become an official diagnoses until 1984. Years passed before the diagnosis became common, and many experts have determined that well known figures of the past publicly demonstrated symptoms of Aspergers.



Heather Kuzmich is a model and an aspiring artist.  Heather was diagnosed with Aspergers when she was 15.
Heather Kuzmich is a model and an aspiring artist. Heather was diagnosed with Aspergers when she was 15.
A bunch of great guys with Aspergers Syndrome
A bunch of great guys with Aspergers Syndrome

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    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Thanks Sandy! Nice to see you!

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      Very well said.

    • CASE1WORKER profile image

      CASE1WORKER 6 years ago from UNITED KINGDOM

      Anne Pettit- you are so right but it is purely education that is needed. I was one person who did not understand why people were different and now I have worked with different people I understand that they have difficulties but they also have their own personalities that shine through.

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 6 years ago from North Carolina

      Godspeed!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 6 years ago from North Carolina

      My nephew has been on prozac as well...until recently when he refused to continue taking it. He doesn't think he needs it or that it makes a difference, however, I see a difference. He is 18 now, and I am no longer his guardian, but it is tough to do the 'stand by' and watch him fall. Still, I cannot force him. He also has neurological problems and ADHD-maybe. Again, it is all confusing, as we try to work through his many idiosyncrasies. Take care. (one and a half more years of H.S. to go!)

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 6 years ago from North Carolina

      What a very nice comment! I really don't think Asperger's can be confirmed, or denied for sure. My son also has severe ADHD which is helped tremendously by a stimulant medication, and he takes fluoxetine (Prozac) for the Aspergers symptoms. Without the meds, he would not have made it through high school. Good Luck!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 6 years ago from North Carolina

      Anne, thank you for sharing the story of your son and the insensitivity of those who pick on and bully him. My nephew, whom I am currently raising, has an autistic spectrum. although I insist that he has Aspergers there has been out right denial that this could ever possibly be his diagnosis. But, I don't believe it...

      Regardless, there is much to be said about the lack of tolerance carried on in this world. Thanks-voted interesting and beautiful

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Hmmmmm, I dont know about scary brilliant. Most assuredly, he is interesting.

    • Contrary Mary profile image

      Contrary Mary 7 years ago from Wake Forest, NC

      If everyone conformed to identical parameters, wouldn't life be boring? My HFA nephew is nothing if not interesting (he's also scary brilliant!)

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Susie, from what I understand, the physiological origins of Aspergers and Autism are the same. That means that some of my sons' Aspergers related behaviors would be similar to your sons Autistic behaviors. We would recognize them because they are our children and we know them intimately. You would pick up on my sons' repetitive motions and inability to pick up on signals. Its a matter of degree. It might be interesting to read in detail about your sons' behaviors and what you interpet them to mean as his mother. Thankyou very much for your comment.

    • SUSIE DUZY profile image

      SUSIE DUZY 7 years ago from Delray Beach, Florida

      Aspergers is supposed to be a mild form of autism, but I have a son who is autistic and I dont see the correlation.

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Dear Varonny, Thankyou for reading my hub and joining me in tolerance.

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Cathylynn, My son and I are very inspired by success stories. Thankyou

    • varonny profile image

      Veronica Almeida 7 years ago from TORONTO

      really well said!

      Hopefully with new minds and more awareness, the people of the world become more open-minded and tolerant of differences. As you mentioned, many of the great minds this world has witnessed did not conformed themselves with the normative expectations of their society.

      Nice reading!

    • cathylynn99 profile image

      cathylynn99 7 years ago from northeastern US

      i have aspergers and i practiced medicine for 9 years. i'm happily married. i think my dad had aspergers. he was a foreman in a mill and married for over 50 years with four daughters.

      einstein, thomas jefferson and marie curie are also thought to have had aspergers. didn't know about darwin.

    • NCBIer profile image

      NCBIer 7 years ago

      Short but sweet! Word efficiency is what it is called, I think. Difficult for many to achieve, including myself.

    • Anne Pettit profile image
      Author

      Anne Pettit 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Thanks! It was a little short.

    • NCBIer profile image

      NCBIer 7 years ago

      Thank you for writing this hub. It needed to be said and you said it well.

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