Well, Bill Gates did this, maybe. Some could have been labeled AS or Autistic or PDD before these were identified in 1943. Of course, these are all definite maybes.
Leonardo Da Vinci
Ludwig Von Beethoven
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Vincent Van Gogh
Your point is well taken, I am not afraid of a diagnosis I just wish I could know the level of getting from here to adulthood. I do not want a depressed adolescent who I have to worry about hurting himself or others and this is certainly not the case now. He is a happy boy who is sometimes frustrated but otherwise his own best friend. I just get confused sometimes when I see him so "normal" and other times when symptoms of aspergers slap me in the face and I just dont want to miss anything. I guess it is the name of the parently game, worry.
I meant to say "the level of pain in getting from here to adulthood."
AFAIK, there is no pain in therepy. OT, PT, Speech. My daughter reported to me that it was kinda "fun" . She did swimming, brushingand somr other things. But painful, it wasn't.
My son also has a "touch of Asperger's" and most of the time seems pretty normal. He is also his own best friend. His real best friend at school has the full blown variety - and eventually I think my son will outgrow him.
Does therapy per say help - not really unless it is social skills training. His school spends alot of time teaching them the skills to get through life - like how not to be so damn rude with people.
The skinny on social play groups - a ccording to all the eggheads at NYU - they don' work. They tried for 10 years - under the best clinical circumstances and even a summer camp specifically designed to facilitate it - and what thye found out was kids made friends at the camp but none of the skills went from the specific to the general. The inherent value of those groups is that they made some friends at camps - but no skills carried and the camp runs ($8,000/a summer session - no partial campers).
Of coourse people have made it through life with no support - look at my husband's Aspie engineering/mathematics/ physicists family - but they also all had until this generation arranged marriages and a strong support network.
Since Asperger's is only recently accepted as a neurological disorder there aren't any long termed studies. For those with decent IQs the future was fairly positive. Most were employed, married and owned their own homes - about 75% and were fairly independent. Other autistic people with the same IQs were hovering in the 55% (they were not reporting such a high degree of independence), I only could find one study that looked at fututre prognosis - but that was the general breakdown.
My kid with Asperger'a doesn't mind te ABA therapy - in fact it was alot of fun and he was definitely easier to handle. His current school has made him a bit more flexible. Right now he is slowing down because his teacher writes "he thinks she should lay off because summer is in the air".
At this age - no one is psychoanalyzing your kid. In fact, it is just alot of things broken down into littler things - so that they understand how everyone else got from A to Z.
I suppose you have to decide if the label and therapy will help your son have a better understanding of where his difficulties come from. It must be hard to understand (and the higher functioning ones do) that you are continually failing at social interaction/friendships. This can lead to low self esteem and depression.
My son has Play Therapy and I have noticed an improvement in that he now asks family members to play with him (although still in quite a rigid way) and he is also less controlling so he will allow other adults/children to lead the play/game. My objective through therapy is for my son to meet his potential. I do not want him to rote learn how to behave appropriately without any understanding behind his behaviour.
I don't think therapy can hurt. And if the only thing that comes out of it is acquaintances, friends, support networks for you and your son then that is a good thing.