What issues should I consider when contemplating broaching Aspergers to my 28-year-old son? I want to help him -- he has no social life, lives at home, is rigid in his habits...in short is on the spectrum in both me and my husband's opinion. Should we tell him what we're thinking?
Yes. My bias is that it is better to know than not to know. If somebody has Aspergers and doesn’t know, it affects him anyway. If the person does know, he may be able to minimize the negative impact and leverage the positive. Without the knowledge that you have Aspergers, you often fill that void with other, more damaging explanations (e.g., I'm just a failure, weird, stupid, etc.).
Re: What issues should I consider when contemplating broaching Aspergers to my 28-year-old son?
Lead with strengths! Most people with Aspergers have significant areas of strength (even if this has not been translatable into tangible success). Bring up areas of strength with the person suspected of having Aspergers. Next, tactfully point out the areas in which he is struggling. Then, suggest that there is a name for this confusing combination of strengths and struggles, and it might be "Aspergers." You may lead them to The Aspergers Comprehensive Handbook or other resources for further information. Provide support along the way.