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What are the pros and cons of seeking a formal diagnosis of autism?
Answer by OrualDec 29, 202114

I've wondered the same thing. Currently I'm leaning toward not seeking a formal autism diagnosis. 

I am actually glad that I did not get diagnosed while I was still a minor, despite potentially gaining access to some accommodations. A friend who was diagnosed young but is overall fairly "high-functioning" for lack of a better term, found that his (otherwise pretty reasonable and decent) parents were much less willing to respect his choices, give him privacy, and so on than they were for his neurotypical siblings, even into adulthood. The accommodations available for someone with autism when I was a minor would likely not have been that useful to me, though it might have meant that I got diagnosed with ADHD earlier, which would have been helpful. Overall, I'm glad I avoided something like my friend's experience.

The very low-probability outcome of my being formally diagnosed with autism now which worries me is my parents deciding to use that diagnosis as reason to do something like gain guardianship over me and control over things like my medical care, despite my being an adult. It's highly unlikely that a court would agree to it on the off chance my parents would be sufficiently controlling assholes to seek it, given their likely reasoning, but I wouldn't call it impossible.

One reason my social and medical transition has been mostly smooth is that I am financially independent from my parents and live in another province, so they cannot interfere much and interfere less than they might otherwise attempt to because they see me as a competent adult who is making choices they don't like and think are wrong, someone to be argued with, criticized, not accommodated if possible but ultimately not actively hindered, not someone whose decision-making is inherently compromised by a developmental disorder and may have been manipulated into transitioning against their own best interests. If they learn of my diagnosis and believe it accurate, that could well change.

I may reevaluate if I'm struggling at work after finishing this bit of college and think I might be able to get useful accommodations, but for the moment the benefits aren't very substantial and the process of getting a diagnosis would be irritating, plus there's a real tail risk in my case.

Why did the UK switch to a 12 week dosing schedule for COVID-19 vaccines?

Minor correction. The UK is not the only country employing the delayed second dose strategy. Canada has done so as well, as a way of maximizing and front-loading the benefit of its relatively limited supplies of vaccine, and I believe we started doing so fairly quickly after the UK, before the effectiveness was clear. So whatever answer explains the UK's willingness to take that risk has to also explain Canada's similar decision.

Pulse and Glide Cycling

I think you might be better served by using a slightly higher gear and adjusting your seat upward so that your leg is at full extension when the relevant pedal is at the bottom of its rotation. I expect that's the main reason you're seeing an advantage, you're using more of your leg in the pedaling motion, which is more efficient. And would be even more efficient if you weren't having to balance your weight on your pedals. Look at how professional cyclists have their bikes set up. Obviously you won't exactly replicate that without toe clips that you won't want to use, but that's where I'd look for improvements as opposed to reinventing the wheel.

Learning Rhythms

Colour me intrigued. Might you happen to have the code for this anywhere? I didn't see it linked in any of your posts, though I may have missed something.

Call for volunteers: assessing Kurzweil, 2019

I've got time. I'm happy to validate predictions. Give me as many as you want.