Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside

Autism & Personality Disorders They Can Co-Exist – Schizotypal Personality Disorder

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OVERVIEW

Note- This is my personal perspective of having Autism and a PD

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In previous posts I have come to the conclusion that my Autism doesn’t define me, but in my early twenties and when I was in my first job which was awful, two Personality Disorders came into the forefront which were “extremes” of my “normal” personality traits. Donna Williams has done extensive research into these areas of personhood (including extremes) and the developmental aspects of Autism and how they co-exist.

Schizotypal Personality Disorder – The Extreme/Disordered version of the “Idiosyncratic ” Personality 

The ICD- 10  definition is:

A disorder characterized by eccentric behavior and anomalies of thinking and affect which resemble those seen in schizophrenia, though no definite and characteristic schizophrenic anomalies have occurred at any stage. There is no dominant or typical disturbance, but any of the following may be present:
  • Inappropriate or constricted affect (the individual appears cold and aloof);
  • Behavior or appearance that is odd, eccentric or peculiar;
  • Poor rapport with others and a tendency to withdraw socially;
  • Odd beliefs or magical thinking, influencing behavior and inconsistent with subcultural norms;
  • Suspiciousness or paranoid ideas;
  • Obsessive ruminations without inner resistance, often with dysmorphophobic, sexual or aggressive contents;
  • Unusual perceptual experiences including somatosensory (bodily) or other illusions, depersonalization or derealization;
  • Vague, circumstantial, metaphorical, over-elaborate or stereotyped thinking, manifested by odd speech or in other ways, without gross incoherence;

This was due to many, many years of misunderstandings not all these traits relate to me – but I believe I wrote it best on my website where is an extract –

Can Autism and Schizotypal Personality Disorder Co-Exist?

The answer to your question is yes it can. To quote a teacher at a specialist school “You’ve got a brain (Autistic or Not) you can get a Mental Health Personality Disorder”. I had this along with Borderline Personality Disorder after a nervous breakdown at work. This Personality Disorder was slowly manifesting over about 2 years before before I left work, it is clear that I have Autism from my early development (Just checkout my early development page) and I can’t see why this “invisible” barrier must come up when dealing with someone who could both have Autism (A Developmental Disorderand Schizotypal Personality Disorder (A Mental Health Disorder).

Magical Thinking & Psychotic Episodes

Yes this warped disturbed “Magical Thinking” was becoming more and more invasive and prominent as my mental health was getting worse. I remember having a massive episode in a public area it was scary (I had both depersonalisation and derealisation) this along with the psychotic episode was in a way a cry for help. My reality was in a mess but thankfully through the help of my family I got through this, I’m very thankful for their on going support and help.

Autism and Mental Health problems must be taken seriously and sensitively. The specialist must have knowledge in Autism to be able to help effectively and pro-actively sadly I never got this attention but my hope is in the future this becomes the mainstream!

Autism Blog – Autism New Science & Opinion

Scroll down towards the end of this blog there are interesting links, medical studies and personal accounts towards the interlinking between Autism, Asperger’s & Schizotypal and Schizoid Personality Disorders

CONCLUSION

Remember “Autism” and “Personality are two different entities that co-exist within our selves the reason why my personality became “disordered” was because of issues of environment which compacted with my developmental issues and information processing made it difficult at this point in time, I still remain strong and positive thought. 🙂 The only way is forward. 🙂

Paul Isaacs Adult with Autism 2014

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Author: Paul Isaacs

Paul was branded as a “naughty & difficult child” at school. He was classically autistic and non-verbal due to speech articulation difficulties. He had complex sensory issues and appeared both deaf and blind. He gained functional speech around the age of 7 or 8 years old. He went through the mainstream school system with no additional help or recognition of his autism. Consequently, he did not achieve his academic or his social potential and had very low self-esteem. At age 11, Paul was referred to the children’s mental health service with childhood depression where he was regarded as “developmentally underage” and having speech problems. As an adult, Paul had a string of unsuccessful jobs, and his mental health suffered. He developed both Borderline and Schizotypal Personality Disorders in early 2007. He was referred to mental health services and misdiagnosed with “Asperger traits with a complex personality”, which did not satisfy Paul or his family. A local autism organisation put Paul in touch with an experienced psychiatrist, who diagnosed him with Autism at 24 years old. In 2012 Paul was also diagnosed with Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome by an Irlen Consultant who confirmed that he also had face, object and meaning blindness – conditions which Paul describes eloquently in his speeches and training sessions. He also has dyslexia, dyscalculia and also a dissociative disorder. Having started working as an local autism organisation as a public speaker in 2010, Paul joined their mission to promote autism awareness. His hope is that others will not have to suffer as he did. Now also a core member of our Training Team, Paul continues to enhance true understanding of autism at every opportunity. Paul has released and published 5 books on the subject of autism published by Chipmunka publishing and has contributed to other books too. Having overcome many challenges to achieve the success that he now enjoys, Paul’s message is that Autism is a complex mix of ability and disability. He firmly believes that every Autistic person should have the opportunity to reach their potential and be regarded as a valued member of society. Apart from autism related blogs Paul also write about movies, fashion, art and anything that is of interest. As of August 2015 Paul now works as a freelance speaker, training and consultant in and around the Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire area. If you are interested please contact him via email at staypuft12@yahoo.co.uk

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