Parents often struggle with the question of whether or not to tell their child that s/he has Asperger's Syndrome. A child with Asperger's Syndrome will recognize early on that s/he is different from other children.
Because of their social difficulties, children with Asperger's may be subject to ridicule, teasing, and exclusion. Per Tony Attwood, kids can deal with the knowledge of their differences, as well as how they are treated by peers, in two different ways: either through internalizing their reactions, or through externalizing behaviors.
Kids who internalize their feelings may develop, as young as six years of age, a reactive depression. Or, we may find that kids will also develop an escape into their imagination. In their fantasy world, they develop imaginary friends, and they are socially and academically competent in this world. This escape can be a helpful coping mechanism, but can result in being excluded as socially immature during middle and high school years.
An alternative to internalizing negative thoughts and feelings is to externalize them. These kids may over-compensate by denying any problems, and developing a sense of anger and arrogance toward others. Unfortunately, over time, this can lead to physically striking out at others, to get even for being socially embarrasesed.
Finally, a lot of kids will try to observe and imitate the characteristics of socially successful peers. Unfortunately, some kids may end up imitating children or peers, especially in middle or high school, who tend to get into trouble.
The good news is that, as you educate yourself as a parent, you will be able to actively be present while observing your child at play in a variety of social situations. Be sure to comment positively on the things they are doing well in social interactions. This can give them a sort of map in terms of figuring out what is and what is not acceptable.