Another issue to consider when speaking to others about the diagnosis of a parent is whether that individual considers being on the autism spectrum to be a “disorder” or “disability” or just part of the normal range of differences in human thinking and behavior. One’s understanding of this will then lead to different kinds of wording and explanations being used. A parent who does think he or she has significant differences from neurotypicals (those not on the autism spectrum) might be comfortable with their child saying “My dad, or my mom, has been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.” A parent who does not think his or her differences are significant or who doesn’t like the labels involved, might prefer their child stay away from diagnostic terms, and if they need to say something use a comment like “My dad, or my mom, doesn’t really like to socialize. Please don’t take it personally.”
If you are interested in this topic, you may be interested in my book: My parent has an autism spectrum disorder/a workbook for children and teens.