Wedding Woes

Should I armchair dx my brother?

Dear Prudie, 
I have a brother two years my senior, and we’re in our late 20s. We don’t really have a relationship. I have recently learned a lot about Asperger’s syndrome, and after hours of research, I’m positive my brother is on the spectrum. He doesn’t really listen to what other people say and interrupts conversations; he lives in a world of habits and changing his routine makes him sick; he can’t understand other people’s feelings while having extreme feelings of his own; he has difficulty making friends; he has odd, repetitive behaviors, the list goes on.
He’s never been diagnosed, and my parents never investigated his awkward behavior, and he was bullied when he was young. He is a very smart person, now with a master’s degree in engineering, and I am happy to know that he has a good job, a few close friends, and an active social life. I never understood his behavior was a syndrome, and not just him being rude, mean, or unpleasant. Now thinking about my brother makes me feel terribly sad, and also very guilty. I want to get along better with him. The question is, Do I tell him I think he has Asperger’s? He’s very sensitive and can get terribly upset when conversations turn too personal. What’s the best thing to do to become a better sister to my undiagnosed Aspie brother!

—Bad Sister 

Re: Should I armchair dx my brother?

  • maybe if she thinks of her brother as a person rather than an (undiagnosed) condition, she will get along better with him. :-\

    I can't say I haven't had similar thoughts re: my 7yo nephew - in his case it's moreso just figuring out the best ways to relate to him and doing those things. 

  • "First year Psychology/Med Student Syndrome" - NO she absolutely SHOULD NOT be trying to project a diagnosis on him unless she's got the credentials.  Psych diagnosis' are in general a very subjective diagnosis' ...  The simple answer to her question - stop being a nosey meddling sister!!!
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