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Susan Boyle Reveals Asperger’s Diagnosis

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Susan Boyle, the Scottish singer who rose to international fame after stunning audiences on the television show “Britain’s Got Talent,” says she’s been diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome.

Singer Susan Boyle says she's been diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome. (Shutterstock)

Singer Susan Boyle says she’s been diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. (Shutterstock)

Boyle, 52, told The Observer newspaper in London that she was diagnosed with the form of autism a year ago by a specialist who found that she has an above-average IQ.

Previously, Boyle said she was told as a child that she had brain damage stemming from complications at birth, but now says she had been misdiagnosed.

“I was told I had brain damage. I always knew it was an unfair label,” the singer said in an interview published over the weekend. “Now I have a clearer understanding of what’s wrong and I feel relieved and a bit more relaxed about myself.”

Boyle wowed audiences when she sang “I Dreamed a Dream” from “Les Misérables” on the show “Britain’s Got Talent” in 2009. Since then, she’s sold millions of albums, topping charts in Britain and elsewhere.

As a child, Boyle was bullied and called “Susie Simple.” More recently, since achieving fame, she has reportedly struggled at times and was treated for exhaustion shortly after coming in second on “Britain’s Got Talent.”

Boyle told The Observer that she hopes her new diagnosis will help others understand where she’s coming from.

“It will not make any difference to my life. It’s just a condition that I have to live with and work through,” Boyle said. “I think people will treat me better because they will have a much greater understanding of who I am and why I do the things I do.”

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Comments (5 Responses)

  1. Elizabeth Naughton says:

    What a beautiful, talented and kind woman. Sharing a diagnosis can be difficult and frightening. I hope that people greet this news with compassion and encouragement. May we have many years of listening to her melodious voice.

  2. Barbara says:

    I knew it! I thought some form of autism when I first saw her. I don’t have any idea what made me think that – but She is awsome! I love her voice and will continue to buy her albums. Thank you Susan.

  3. Gail Cammero Reilly says:

    It is kind of Susan Boyle to share her diagnosis to help others. She shows that it is a diagnosis that can have a positive outcome. But it shouldn’t take a famous person’s disclosure for the general public to grasp.

  4. Joan says:

    I’m so glad that Ms. Boyle received and felt relieved by the diagnosis, and perhaps can get some help for some of the things that may be problematic for her. Although she may like her life just the way it is! She will be a role model for many children and adults with Asperger diagnoses.
    It makes me all the more furious at Simon Cowell who was so rude to her when she first appeared on his talent show. Even though he didn’t know of her diagnosis at the time, that kind of disrespect he showed to her has no place in civil society. Shame on him!

  5. witness913 says:

    thank you for this information. it is always helpful, as a teacher, to have one more awesome person with a disability to add to the repertoire of role models for students on the spectrum or in any other way.
    and thank you to ms. boyle, a tremendous person and talent. so glad you decided to come sing on a talent show. my husband “found” you and we both adore you and your music.

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