Asperger’s Syndrome (AS) is a ‘high functioning’ form of autism. People with AS can see, hear and experience the world differently to neurotypical people- people who are not on the spectrum. Asperger’s Syndrome and all the commonly associated attributes can vary widely from person to person, meaning that AS is a unique experience for each individual. Typically, individuals with AS experience difficulties with social communication, particularly conversations, non-verbal cues and reciprocal interaction. It also commonly affects the individual’s ability to perceive and process information.
People with AS tend to be of average or above average intelligence. While they don’t experience learning disabilities that many people with autism do, they may experience difficulties understanding and processing language. As people with AS are logical thinkers and interpret things literally, they can often have trouble understanding figurative language- “Her smile could light up the room”, or “I’ve told you a million times before”.
Due to difficulties with social communication, individuals with AS may come across as being quite shy and reserved. Maintaining eye contact, engaging with peers and starting or sustaining a conversation with others may prove difficult. They also tend to think in a very logical and concrete manner which results in a desire to have a rigid routine or timetable. Any changes to their routine can prove challenging.