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OTRC: Susan Boyle reveals Asperger's Syndrome diagnosis

Susan Boyle apepars on the Today Show on Dec. 3, 2013. (Peter Kramer / NBC)

Susan Boyle, who rose to fame with her rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream" on "Britain's Got Talent" in 2009, has revealed she has been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome.

Boyle, 52, told the Observer newspaper in an interview published on Dec. 8 that she was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome -- a form of autism that makes aspects related to social interaction and nonverbal communication difficult -- after visiting a specialist about a year ago, who told the singer she had an above-average IQ.

Boyle also revealed that as a child, she was bullied by other students in school and experienced learning difficulties that were the result of brain damage from oxygen deprivation at birth.

"I have always known that I have had an unfair label put upon me," Boyle told the Observer newspaper. "Now I have a clearer understanding of what's wrong and I feel relieved and a bit more relaxed about myself."

The singer has struggled with the intense pressure success has brought her since her 2009 "Britain's Got Talent" audition went viral, having been treated for nervous exhaustion following her meteoric rise to fame. The singer, however, is pleased to know her diagnosis and hopes that people will have a better understanding of her moving forward.

"I would say I have relationship difficulties, communicative difficulties, which lead to a lot of frustration," Boyle said. "If people were a bit more patient, that would help."

"Asperger's doesn't define me," she continued. "It's a condition that I have to live with and work through, but I feel more relaxed about myself. People will have a much greater understanding of who I am and why I do the things I do."

Since 2009, Boyle has sold more than 19 million albums worldwide, notching three consecutive No. 1 albums in the U.K. She has also been nominated for two Grammy Awards in the United States, including Best Pop Vocal Album in 2011 for the LP "I Dreamed A Dream."

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