Why Females Are Less Likely To Be Diagnosed

The vast majority of referrals for a diagnostic evaluation for High-Functioning Autism  (HFA) are boys. The ratio of males to females is roughly around 10:1; however, the epidemiological research for HFA suggests that the ratio should be 4:1. Why are girls less likely to be identified as having the characteristics indicative of an autism spectrum disorder?

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  1. because they don't look for it until it's staring them in the face and they have no other options left. At least, that was my experience. They wanted to label it bad behaviour and bad parenting before they would consider Asperger's. (and it was the third doctor that would finally listen and consider it).

  2. I've forwarded this article to my daughter's high school counselor... what a difference the last 4 years could have been if they'd really looked at why she seemed unable to ask for help and was disconnected from school instead of labeling her as lazy and unmotivated. Even after finally getting a diagnosis last spring, they essentially blew it off because "she laughed at jokes and participated in the 2 classes they observed"...ceramics (all about effort, not ability), criminal justice (no homework and a teacher who "got her"). She graduates next week and as I've been telling her for years, "the rest of her life begins".

  3. GREAT post! Thank you SO much for broaching this subject. We had to practically pull teeth to get a proper diagnosis for our Aspie.

  4. Before I even knew what it was I had her diagnosed. her traits were strong! But i did not say a word to the specialist who ran all the tests, but she confirmed it pretty much right away! I noticed things from the time she was only a few months old.

  5. I agree Sandra, also girls obsessions tend to be more girl acceptably, for my dd cats, and horses. My dd's dx is NVLD which is very similar to aspergers, but with visual spacial difficulties, and fine and gross motor issues. There is much overlap in the two.

  6. This is all very interesting I have just started the process to get diagnosed I am 34. My son is an Aspie.
    I always found myself with a dominant friend. Someone who could do all the talking for both of us... I could follow..copy or mimic. And definitely stay in the shadows. My main aim at school was not to be noticed...I pretty much succeeded at that.
    I also did a lot of dance and drama. Actually trained as a dancer, the only thing I would say is that actually making a career in such a competitive industry was beyond me at the time.
    Now I understand - having to talk to prominent people and selling yourself is as important as talent...Something I couldn't do...
    I would definitely be interested to be part of any research.. Well done to parents for noticing, I think it is harder to identify girls...


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