Dear Parents of kids with Aspergers:
Re: How or when do you tell a child he/she has Aspergers?
Since all children with Aspergers (high-functioning autism) are different, I can only tell you how I told Matthew, and leave the judgment call up to you. We found out Matthew had Aspergers when he was 5. We decided to tell him as early as possible, hoping he would embrace it instead of completely rejecting the idea.
My wife and I then researched different parts of this spectrum and when we were ready, sat Matt down and begin to tell him. We started out by telling him that everybody is born with a gift. Some are born to be athletes, some with great music talents. We stated he was born with the gift of Aspergers. When then stated that Aspergers give him the ability to see life differently (out of the box). If all people see the world the same, then we would not have great inventions. People who look outside of this box can view the world in a whole different way.
We also gave him names of famous people who had Aspergers, to put his mind at ease. I also found that giving him this list gives him hope that he could change the world one day. We also used television personalities so Matt could see people on television who have it. For example: Lisa Simpson, Spock, House, Gissom from CSI, and now Sheldon from the Big Bang theory.
We have found that in using this strategy, Matt has not only accepted his diagnoses, but now has become proud of it. This was his gift.
My Aspergers Child: Help for Parents with Out-of-Control Aspergers Children