So I am learning that although SPD and ASD have a lot of the sensory sensitivities in common... there is a difference. There is a noticeable difference between Peanut who has SPD and Cookie who has ASD. I noticed the differences in Cookie started at birth... the differences with Peanut were the 9-12 month range. Also, Cookie does not fit in with her peers and Peanut is a social butterfly with lots of friends (and she remembers the names of friends, whereas Cookie rarely does).
I am a total newbie with this ASD stuff, as until a week ago, I though we only had SPD for both Cookie and Peanut.. but my gut kept telling me that something more was going on with Cookie. So... lesson 1... trust your gut. I also found www.autismparentssupport.org to be VERY helpful in things such as lingo, general FAQ, and information. I have been reaching out to other parents in my shoes... which is a wonderful help.
I am also learning that people don't understand SPD... but they REALLY don't understand ASD. When I say Cookie is ASD... people think she can't talk or expect she will be in a corner banging her head. Society has filled people with this idea that people can't function if they are on the spectrum. Cookie is MILD ASD... so the goal is to keep her mainstream. I am not super fond of the new DSM V diagnosis, as they took Aspergers out... and I really feel like it had a different expectation from society. But that is life I guess... and now it's learning to plug through and figure out what to do. Family is either super supportive... or totally clueless. I was even told that EVERYONE has ASD! I assure you... that is not true.
Please keep following... as I find things out... I will continue to share. As parents... we learn from each other... but remember... no one knows your kid like you do...