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12 year old daughter with autistic traits/ocd - does this sound like pda too!!
  • mrscoco
    Posts: 190
    Hi - this is my first post - My daughter has always been an anxious, obsessive type of child and this april we had her assessed via school, due to her anxiety (although she seems fine when she is at school and teachers love her) she was diagnosed as having broader autism phenotype as her younger brother is also on the spectrum..anyhow in July her anxiety hit an all time high and she was suddenly very guilty about lots of things and had an emotional meltdown - she has always felt guilty and said sorry all the time as she felt like she had upset me, and I put this down to ocd type behaviour, but then she was suddenly 'needing to talk' to me ALL the time and had to confess stuff or anything that crossed her mind that she felt bad about, she also started freaking out around this time about me getting pregnant and started to monitor where my husband and I were and demanding to know stuff (again I was sure this was ocd) bedtimes then turned into a nightmare with her needing to confess and if it went wrong would have to start again, I was not allowed to breathe or swallow loudly or scratch or fidgit (crazy huh) all of that seemed to come out of nowhere although things have morphed and changed and we have been seeing a private pychiatrist and phycologist, pda never been mentioned, however it does seem like a massive need to control, if i tell her to do anything there is massive procrastination or if she does not get her own way, she will just be silly and get herself and her brother into trouble. She has always been excessively nosey and wanted to know everything ie who is on the phone etc The most difficult thing I have to deal with at the moment is that if she is annoyed or i say anything she doesnt like she will have to make it right by saying all her little phrases and obsessive sayings, if i tell her to stop she will say 'and that again' until she has the last word, she also obsessively pesters me for an answer and it does not matter what i say the answer is never right....this is a tiny snapshot and its all consuming. Showers take ages and she cant get in until she feels just right or has 'spoken to me' transition is very hard from one thing to another - ive realised that a lot of these behaviours been around for years but very underlying and also it was manageable and not at this level.. I feel that puberty has ramped everything up to level 10 and led me here..what does everyone thing.
  • I believe you have been let down with the "autistic traits/BAP" diagnosis. I would ask for reassessment for PDA. She could also be AS/HFA (although they are often calling it all ASC/ASD now because the USA diagnostic manual has done it and although the international manual is still being revised and hasn't, they have done the same in the draft so diagnostician's are pre-empting it).

    She sounds fully on the spectrum by your description. Autistic females are often misdiagnosed or missed diagnosed.

    It is also very common in autistics (especially in females) that adolescence is the time of mental health problems due to the social and other pressures of secondary school.

    Repetitive questioning is a typically autistic thing, but I can tell you my suspected PDA daughter (already diagnosed HFA) does it way more than her Asperger's sister. I also have AS and as a child I remember repetitively asking my dad "why" about every little thing. My Aspie daughter is also very nosey about wanting to know who is on the phone, what I was talking about, who sent me a card and to read what is in it etc. She also takes hours in the bathroom and also has many OCD habits. I have mild OCD, but OCD is potentially part of the autism. You might find my blog post useful: https://planetautismblog.wordpress.com/2014/02/14/ocd-or-not-ocd-that-is-the-question/

    High anxiety is usual in autism but really pathological anxiety is the driving force in PDA.

    My PDA daughter also masks everything at school, although they are aware she is highly anxious. She is Jekyll and Hyde between school and home and this difference in behaviour is very common generally in autistic children. The NAS has a page on it.

    Misophonia is also common in autism (but some non autistic people can also have it) - the intense dislike and even angry reaction to certain noises. I cannot bear my husband chewing and crunching in the same room as me. I can't bear hearing people sniffing, clearing their throat, scratching themselves...all sorts.
  • mrscoco
    Posts: 190
    Thanks so much PlanetAutism - I meant to reply sooner but what with xmas and everything have not been back on until now!! Yes you are right, however when we got her diagnosed with the traits it was in April this year and was different to how she is now (she had this massive panick attack meltdown around July and that is when i feel A LOT changed!!) it has morphed a lot since July I suppose good or bad she has developed coping mechanisms (in that way of having to speak to me and say all these scripted phrases and confess ANY thing that she feels guilty about, im not kidding its like she has taken truth serum!! She was always 'sorry' before and had a massive obsession with ruining the day and upsetting me but that was a walk in the park compared to now!! I have tried to talk to her about it and if i do it with enough humour etc...she will talk a little bit about it and I would go as far as thinking that she enjoys the confessions and phrases and talks really fast when she is doing it and even jumps sometimes because she said she wants to get them out fast and it is like a release! If we are out as a family she will walk along with her arm in mine and whisper it all to me every so often...it drives her brother bonkers as he is so tuned into when she is doing it!! (he is hfa) however I have just had to accept that I cant change it and ignore as much as possible. She has massive perfectionist traits especially about her bedroom and will go into obsession mode about that, cleaning and dusting it and gets very annoyed if I go in during that time. She is also very obsessive about her phone getting dirty and hates it if apps are not shut down and she has too many photos or messages on it....I have noticed she wont even go on whatsapp to text her friends back if it is 'not the right time' etc!! she HAD to read my husbands and my christmas cards to each other as predicted!! Over the last week her fixated questioning have taken on a mind of their own....she cant bear it if i cry, she literally freaks out and needs to know WHY....WHY did i cry, was it her, why was it her and then she literally finds it almost impossible to move on until she gets the answer she wants....You are right though, she was never like this until she hit puberty, so I can totally agree the hormones have caused havoc in the area of mental health!!! Its crazy because to everyone else she just looks like this neuro typical beautiful girl. I think im also on the spectrum or adhd too which would explain my struggles at school etc, however I was more head in the clouds type of girl and never experienced a high level of anxiety/ocd at her age and my obsessions eventually took the place of health and fitness and exercise and becoming a vegan, it does explain a lot about me though but im happy with that! :)
  • You're welcome and no problem. She sounds quite similar to my Aspie daughter in a lot of ways. She too is obsessive about her stuff getting marks, stains and bits on them. She also gets obsessive about having too many photos on her phone and also won't take her phone or books or other possessions out of the house in case they get germs or dirt on them. She's also had a very similar thing about the crying. When she was little she had to rehearse a song for a school Christmas thing, she sung it to me at home and it was so beautiful I got tears in my eyes/choked up and ever since then she has been really worried and stressed about singing in front of me, and has largely avoided it. You may have been the passive Asperger's sub-type if you are on the spectrum:

    (Wing et al)

    Often amiable, gentle, and easily led. Those passive rather than aloof from infancy may fit AS. More likely than the aloof to have had a mainstream education, and their psych skill profiles are less uneven. Social approaches passively accepted (little response or show of feelings). Characteristic autistic egocentricity less obvious in this group than in others. Activities are limited and repetitive, but less so than other autistics. Can react with unexpected anger or distress. Recognition of their autism depends more on observing the absence of the social and creative aspects of normal development than the presence of positive abnormalities. The general amenability is an advantage in work, and they are reliable, but sometimes their passivity and naïvety can cause great problems. If undiagnosed, parents and teachers may be disappointed they cannot keep a job at the level predicted from their schoolwork.



    I may have ADHD as well as Asperger's, I had a qEEG which showed up ADHD patterns and my executive dysfunction is appalling. I thought it was just part of the Asperger's but when I realised my suspected PDA daughter had many ADHD traits too I realised she must have got that from myself as well.
  • webbwebb
    Posts: 2,543
    Hi, just wanted to pick up on the Monophobia.
    I hadn't heard of this so looked it up.
    I suspect many children and adults with ASD or PDA will have been diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder (which I assume would encompass monophobia?)
  • Hi webb, I'm not sure what monophobia is, did you mean misophonia?

    To be diagnosed with SPD you would need to have multiple sensory difficulties/sensitivities which would include auditory but that would be for a variety of sound/volumes not only crunching/chewing type stuff, although people (both autistic and NT) can have misophonia without SPD (some NTs can have SPD, although I am sure it's much more common in those with ASC).
  • webbwebb
    Posts: 2,543
    sorry, yes I meant misophonia.
  • Ah, OK. Thanks.

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