¿Conoces la serie The Big Bang Theory? Acerca de cómo viven cuatro frikis o “nerds” (en inglés) y una rubia guapa aspirante a actriz. Uno de ellos, el entrañable y desesperante Sheldon, tiene un modo de comportarse de lo más peculiar… y es que padece lo que se llama Síndrome de Asperger.
Por María José Cordero Raffo
The Asperger Syndrome is a really weird and curious autism spectrum disorder. When we talk about autism we often think about people immersed in their own and strange world, unable to contact with the outside. But this syndrome differs from other autism disorders by its “relative” preservation of linguistic and cognitive development, which let people who suffer from it to have a “common” life.
People with this disorder lack empathy and find it difficult to read body language, for example. They don’t perceive and respond the way people usually do to nonverbal clues nor can read other people emotions. They tend to be too literal in language communication and that’s why they don’t understand sarcasm, jokes or metaphorical speech. We could say they suffer from “emotional blindness”.
An aspie (a person with this disorder) avoids eye contact, his or her facial expression, gesture, posture turn out to be weird (or odd) for others, their smile (it hardly ever happens) forced. That’s why they fail to socialise successfully and are prone to asocial behaviour, although most people with this syndrome want to be social when they are children.
Their brain works in a really special way, often focused in specific subjects. They are usually outstanding in maths or physics, take interest in transports, timetables and logics, and are brilliant on them, which can lead to think they are highly-gifted. Some people diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome state that it´s not a disease but a way of being. Of course depending on the severity of the disorder, the person affected by this disorder will have a “normal life”.
To conclude here are some famous people said to be diagnosed with Asperger: Bill Gates, Steven Spielberg, some musicians (Syd Barret or the pianist Glenn Gloud), and so on. This Syndrome has been shown in TV series (House), in books (Lisbeth Salander, main character in Stieg Larson Trilogy Millenium, suffers from it) for example.