Friday, October 23, 2009

Biblical Counseling and Asperger's Syndrome

As my Asperger's journey continues, I am finally finding a few truly helpful answers to my nearly overwhelming struggles. Recently, I received an abundance of counsel as I sought help from Biblical Counseling. (If you are unfamiliar with that term, it refers to the branch of Christian counseling that is nouthetic and seeks to direct counselees directly to the Bible for answers to their problems. You can go to and then click on the right sidebar to find a counselor in your area. Sometimes the counsel is provided free of charge through a church, though not always.) Biblical counseling can be painful, but I believe it quickly gets to the root of most problems so that the counselee gets the true help they need.

I will start with posting a few of the resources that have recently made the strongest impact on me. Maybe I can elaborate further another time.

*In dealing with the anger, pain, and bitterness I have experienced in relationship to the aspies in my life, the most help has come from reading (and re-reading) Lou Priolo's booklet "Bitterness: the Root that Pollutes" This is a small pamphlet-type booklet that is packed with gems that will convict, challenge, and give you clear direction when facing the most difficult of situations with the most difficult people/enemies in your life.

*For Christian wives of aspies, please read "The Excellent Wife" by Martha Peace (Focus Publishing). It's not an easy read as it seems more like a biblical commentary than a marriage book, but there are chapters on living with a difficult husband that will help you turn your depressing thoughts toward more godly thinking.
*For husbands of aspies, the complementary book is called "The Exemplary Husband" by Stuart Scott. I haven't read it, so if you do, please let me know what you think. I suspect it will help you to love your difficult wife as the Bible commands you to do.

*For biblically parenting a child with Asperger's, read "Finding Your Child's Way on the Autism Spectrum: Discovering Unique Strengths, Mastering Behavior Challenges" by Dr. Laura Hendrickson. Dr. Hendrickson is a biblical counselor, a former psychiatrist, and the mom to an autistic son. If you are familiar with "Shepherding a Child's Heart" then you will understand what I mean by saying "This is like Shepherding an Autistic Child's Heart." A great little book!

Most of these can be found on


  1. I believe I have aspie and I also believe in Nouthetic Counseling. Our church practices it. However, I am concerned that Biblical Counselors will not believe it is physical and only counsel for spiritual/emotional. I have studied some of the Biblical counseling books and still have these problems.

    Anyway, I'm glad I found this site. Thanks for putting it together.

  2. Thanks for commenting, Karen. There is a cd of a workshop done at the 2009 NANC conference on How to Counsel Adults with Autism and Asperger's. has them for sale. You can to the website and then do a title word search for "Counseling Autism" to order.

  3. Thanks so much! I'll look into it.

  4. My 9 yr. old son was just diagnosed with Asperger's, OCD, and Tourette's Syndrome last week and we have already been going to occupational therapy for a sensory processing disorder. We started all of the evaluations because his teacher thought he had ADHD. It has been a bit of a roller coaster and I am currently feeling overwhelmed. I am encouraged to see this blog because we attend a church and have lots of friends who are huge proponents of nouthetic counseling. I think it is a wonderful way to go to but I have already been struggling in my own heart with questioning the validity of this diagnosis because I don't want to head in a direction that would be dishonoring to the Lord. We believe He has brought us to this point so we're taking it a day at a time, but I have to admit it's hard that we are going to psychiatry to help our son. I am going to see if I can get my hands on the book by Laura Hendrickson.

  5. I would urge parents to be particularly aware of Scripture as they venture into the realm of Nouthetic Counsel. Blaming general sin for the human condition is Biblical - blaming specific sin for all "mental" (NEVER physical) disorders is not. Job was depressed, and his counselors told him EXACTLY what a Nouthetic Counselor would say. And they were all dead wrong. Counselors are not ALWAYS right and counselees ALWAYS wrong. Proceed with Biblical caution!!

  6. There is another Christian parenting book on autism called "Too Wise to Be Mistaken, Too Good to be Unkind".