IS THIS AUTISM?
#1 New Release in Autism & Asperger's Syndrome
#1 Best Seller in Psychopathology
Though our understanding of autism has greatly expanded, many autistic individuals are still missed or misdiagnosed. This highly accessible book clarifies many ways that autism can present, particularly in people who camouflage to hide their autistic traits.
The authors take the reader step by step through the diagnostic criteria, incorporating the latest research as well as quotes from over 100 autistic contributors that bring that research to life. They also describe many aspects of autism that are not included in the current diagnostic criteria, such as autistic strengths and co-occurring disorders. Readers will learn about highly relevant topics, such as different types of empathy, sensory systems that are not well known, neuro-crash and burn out, and relative versus absolute thinking.
This book provides a deep, current, and neurodiversity-affirmative understanding of the less obvious presentations of autism. It is relevant to all healthcare professionals, educators, family members, autistic individuals, and anyone who is curious about autism. A clinical companion guide, Is This Autism? A Companion Guide for Diagnosing, is available for clinicians who make mental health diagnoses.
Want a handy guide for diagnosing?
Meet the Authors
Donna Henderson, Psy.D.
Donna Henderson is a clinical psychologist, specializing in neuropsychological evaluations for children, adolescents, and adults who would like to understand themselves better. She is a sought-after lecturer and provides training and consultation for other healthcare professionals.
Jamell White, Ph.D., LCSW-C
Jamell White has a background in clinical social work, special education, and human development and specializes in working with autistic children, adolescents and adults. She has over 20 years of clinical experience.
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Steve Silberman, author of NeuroTribes
“Is This Autism? is a towering accomplishment, bringing together the state of the art of scientific and clinical insights into autism with the lived experience and perspectives of autistic people. Sensitively written, meticulously observed, and profoundly compassionate, this book will transform your understanding of autism, whether you’re a clinician, a family member, or an autistic person yourself.”
Barb Cook, MAut, DipHSc, Developmental Educator, Director NeuroEmploy & NeuroDiversity Hub, founder Spectrum Women
“Is This Autism? is just brilliant – genuinely one of the best books I have ever read! Drs. Henderson and Wayland embrace neuro-affirming practice, bringing together their clinical and life experience to give a richness that is much needed within the medical and therapeutic field of autism.”
Lauren Kenworthy, PhD, pediatric neuropsychologist, Director, Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders, Children’s National Hospital
“Is This Autism? integrates the voices of autistic people and the latest research to provide a readable, empowering, and comprehensive resource for clinicians of all kinds. Its emphasis on autistic strengths and the value of neurodiversity is especially welcome.”
Annie Kotowicz, author of What I Mean When I Say I’m Autistic: Unpuzzling a Life on the Autism Spectrum
“You could spend years finding the patterns in first-person accounts of how autism manifests in various individuals―or you could read this book. As a late-diagnosed autistic woman, I wish it existed earlier. For other adult women seeking an autism evaluation, I would confidently recommend any clinician who reads this book and its companion guide. (That’s a big leap from my previous recommendation, which was to only see a clinician who has previously diagnosed another autistic woman!)”
Dr. Jennifer I. Huffman, PhD, ABPdN, Neurodivergent Clinical Psychologist, Board Certified Pediatric Neuropsychologist, Owner – Neuropsychology Center, www.theablecenter.com
These books, and the associated training by the authors, should be considered the gold standard in texts on neurodiversity-affirming evaluations of Autistic individuals across the lifespan. Anyone providing Autism assessments or supports should read and follow the guidelines provided in these thoughtfully written works. Many Autistic individuals were interviewed and included in the process of informing the authors' work for these books, and they treated this process with the respect and care that the Autistic community deserves.
To clinicians involved with assessment and support for Autistic and/or other Neurodivergent individuals (which includes almost all providers-- whether they know it or not), this set of books should be required reading to guide and inform your clinical practices.
To my fellow Neurodivergent tribe, Congratulations! The mental health field is finally starting to understand. I also recommend this book to you; I believe this book will be an invaluable guide in your process of seeking identification or validation of your lived experience. This book will also help you to be a more informed consumer of clinical evaluations of Autism and Autistic mental health care and supports.
Kira Armstrong, pediatric neuropsychologist, co-editor of The Clinical Neuropsychologist’s Special Issue: Assessment and Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders
“This book presents a respectful, rich, and expansive description of what autism really looks like across individuals. It provides an invaluable resource to help clinicians move past the often inaccurate, restricted, and stereotypical expectations that have historically limited an appreciation for the full ‘spectrum’ of this diagnosis. It is a must- read for all neuropsychologists as well as all who work with this population, whether they know it or not.”
Marilyn J. Monteiro, PhD, author of Monteiro Interview Guidelines for Diagnosing the Autism Spectrum (MIGDAS- 2)
“Is This Autism? is a wonderful contribution to the field, guiding clinicians to better understand, appreciate, and describe autistic individuals as they support each unique individual’s journey of self- discovery through the assessment process.”
Carol Stock Kranowitz, author of The Out- of- Sync Child
“This book is a MASTERPIECE. The information is new, beautifully stated, organized, important, helpful. Just gorgeous. I love it very much.”
Rachelle K. Sheely PhD, President RDI
"Reading through this timely book, I remember five children referred to me who met full criteria for Autism and 'looked Autistic'. A quick visual glance and a clinical workup using the tools available suggested Autism. In fact, they were misdiagnosed. I write about this because, although their presentation suggested Autism, the actual reasons for each unique presentation were undiagnosed medical issues: diabetes, allergies, adrenal leukodystrophy, DRK1A and congenital adrenal hyperplasia. Fortunately, all eventually received appropriate medical diagnoses. Although there are many other examples I might mention, these stand out because an important question was not asked at the time of the diagnosis. 'How do I know what I don’t know?'
"This important book by Donna Henderson, Sarah Wayland and Jamell White begs the question and also answers it. It is easily, I might even say enjoyably read and provides professionals giving the diagnosis a well-researched way of thinking about Autism. Considering Autism, especially with the upsurge in incidence, I ask, 'How do we stay curious?' The answer is to read this book.
"I found the expertise in this book crucial for anyone interested in Autism, a necessary resource for clinicians, researchers, and diagnosticians. Without hesitation, I rate it, to date, the most important, work in the field."
Kim Clairy OTR/ L, autistic occupational therapist
“Lived experiences, professional expertise, and research are carefully woven together in Is This Autism? – a must-read for ALL clinicians to enable them to recognize and better serve the often unseen and unheard autistic clients that come into their offices.”
Jeremy Sharp, PhD, licensed psychologist and host of The Testing Psychologist podcast
“Is This Autism? presents current autism research and relevant clinical guidance within an affirming, easy-to-understand framework.”
William Stixrud, PhD, clinical neuropsychologist and co-author of The Self- Driven Child and What Do You Say?
“This amazing book is an indispensable tool for helping clinicians and parents understand and identify the less obvious presentations of autism. It is filled with practical wisdom rooted in the authors’ personal and clinical experience, as well as their enormous respect for neurodiversity. I’ve learned a ton that will make me a better psychologist!”
Dr. Rita Eichenstein, neuropsychologist and author of Not What I Expected: Help and Hope for Parents of Atypical Children
“This groundbreaking book will revolutionize the way we think about autism. Well-researched and well-organized, Drs. Henderson and Wayland have created a definitive text that specifies and widens the lens through which we understand autism. This should be required reading for all professionals and lay people who want to understand the world of neurodiversity.”
Theresa M. Regan, PhD, author of Understanding Autism in Adults and Aging Adults
“Do you know what autism looks like in your neighbor, teacher, coworker, or aunt? An abundance of quotes and real- life examples bring neurodiversity to life in this exceptional book that does not disappoint.”
Karin Varblow, MD, pediatrician
“Is This Autism? is revolutionary in its empowering messages for clinicians and for individuals with autistic brains, alike. Drs. Henderson, Wayland are clearly changing the conversation about how autism is understood and diagnosed, and the world is a better place for it. If you have any interest in autism (and even if you don’t!), this book is truly a must-read! I assure you: You have never read another one like it.”
Rick Silver, MD, psychiatrist, founder and director, The THRIVE Center
“Is This Autism? takes you on a personally guided tour into the hearts and souls of autistics. With the knowledge that Donna Henderson and Sarah Wayland have harvested from decades of personal and professional work, they convey the many twists and turns of the developmental journey of autistics. One phrase stuck with me in particular: “A sense of belonging.” This desire to be validated for who we are – no matter how we show up in the world – lies at the deepest core of every human’s longing. Henderson and Wayland show us – with compassion and inclusivity – not only how to be informed about autistics but also how to be wise as well.
"With solid research, practical suggestions, and moving narratives from the experts who live the neurodivergent journey, we are invited to understand that only by knowing what is on the inside can we – as professionals and family members – help on the outside. This book will become an essential guide for those of us committed to creating a world that adapts to and celebrates the unique experiences of autistics.”