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My name is Rachel and I am 23 years old. I was diagnosed with combined-type ADHD and a learning disability when I was 8.

As a child, I had a delay in fine and gross motor skills, I had trouble expressing my emotions, trouble communicating with others, and threw constant, severe tantrums when I didn’t get my way or for no reason. During these severe tantrums, I would slam myself on the ground kicking and screaming, and I would rock and bang my head. I also did not know how to make friends or keep them.

As an adult, I have been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and depression. Do you think I have Asperger’s Syndrome, too?

Rachel: I am so pleased to hear you describe your problems. All too often, I see young adults who spend all of their time blaming others for their difficulties. You are correct. Something is not right in the way you regulate your emotions. Plus, there are other learning problems.

What you describe does not sound like Asperger’s. If you have not done so as an adult, ask to see a psychiatrist for a comprehensive assessment. (Even though you are an adult, you might find that a child and adolescent psychiatrist would be best. These professionals are trained to work with adults as well. And, they are more likely to know about the types of difficulties you describe.) Don’t give up until you have answers and a treatment plan to help you.

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