Having Turner’s Syndrome and Asperger’s Syndrome can be difficult at some points, but I wouldn’t change anything about who I am. My name is Cassidy and I have Asperger’s Syndrome and Turner’s Syndrome. I’m 19 years old and live in a small town in Mississippi. When I was born, the doctors noticed some physical characteristics of a condition that they thought was Turner’s Syndrome. When I was a few days old, they performed a test called karotype. The test came back positive and confirmed I had classic Turner’s Syndrome. Turner’s Syndrome is a chromosome abnormality that occurs only in females. It cause heart defects, short stature, webbed neck, etc. My mom was scared because she didn’t know what Turner’s Syndrome was and whether I would live. I’m glad that wasn’t the case with me. I am lucky. I believe God kept me on this Earth for a reason. There is a reason why I’m short.

Most people never heard of Turner’s Syndrome, because it’s a very rare condition. When I was in school, I was picked on for being different and short for my age. My classmates did not understand my condition and why I was the way I was. As I grew older, my mom knew something else was going on with me, and it wasn’t Turner’s Syndrome. I was becoming depressed and cried all the time. I started to have anxiety and ticks such as hand clapping. I also developed an interest in celebrities. My mom knew this wasn’t normal behavior and something was wrong. I wasn’t socializing with my peers and had no social skills. We went to a psychiatrist and he confirmed I had Asperger’s Syndrome. Asperger’s Syndrome is a developmental disorder. It is on the autism spectrum. It causes difficulty reading social cues and social interaction with peers. People with Asperger’s don’t know how to socialize with their peers like others do and connect with the real world. Some people with Asperger’s live in their ‘own world at times.

Even though we are different, we still want to be accepted by peers. Some people don’t understand what it’s like to be on the autism spectrum and how we think. I know that sometimes I want to be like everybody else, but I’m not. I’m just me. Nothing is going to change that. I feel blessed that I am the way I am. I have a strong support system and I know they’re behind me 100 percent. I graduated in May, 2012 with honors. I was fourth in class ranking and I am currently about to take online classes as of fall 2013. I still deal with my autism on a daily basis, but I’m not going to let it stop me from doing what I want to do. I am going to live my life and not let it affect me and who I am.

Cassidy Hooper, Mississippi