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People With Autism Share Things They Wish Neurotypical People Knew About Their Relationships (18 Posts)

There are many people in the world living with Autism spectrum disorder and unless you have someone in your life who lives with ASD, there are things you don’t realize about these folks. Especially when it comes to their personal, intimate relationships.

Everyone has gone through the struggles of dating. It’s not an easy part of life for anyone, but we have all collectively decided that the positives of having a partner outweigh the downs. Folks living with ASD have been sharing some things they want neurotypical people to realize about dating and intimacy in their own lives.

1.

“I really wish people would try to be even if just a bit more understanding of our condition. I tend to be a bit too much as I’m unable to notice if I’m annoying the other person, being too clingy, intrusive or things like that, but most times I’m just doing my best to give the other person attention and a way to know me. When I try to reduce that I end looking cold, rude, uncaring… If people would talk and tell me their feelings or that I’m being too much or too little, I can adapt and find a better way to interact with them. I’m usually extremely closed off due to everything that happened to me, but when I feel safe I talk a lot and many people feel overwhelmed, but instead of just letting me know that I’m being too much they run away or disappear, that gives me a feeling of inadequacy, that I’m not supposed to be close to people and should just be forever alone.” – B

2.

“I haven’t been in a relationship, but everyone seems to think that I’m stupid because I’m autistic and have ADHD – or that I’m “childish” because being neurodivergent is something you get rid of at 18 apparently. Many people think that having special interests, not being able to really be still and calm and having “weird” quirks is a sign of someone being stupid/childish. add selective mutism (which is pretty common among autistic people from what i’ve heard) and boom – people see you as a child. I’ve kind of given up on relationships, with my nonexistent social skills it just won’t happen.” –prekeles

3.

“Having special interests has ruined relationships for me on multiple occasions. I’ve had partners who felt I cared more about my special interest than them. Really I was just excited to share it with them, but they felt that because I talked about it so often, I was prioritizing the interest over them. The reality is that I felt comfortable enough with them to info dump, when I was too self conscious to get excited about it in front of other people.” –hrachelrodgers98

4.

“I need more communication than you think! I’m very good at mimicking and making it seem like I get what’s going on and reading facial expressions and body language, but it’s all a ruse. Subtly is lost on me when it comes to anything romantic or sexual so please just (respectfully) tell me what you’re thinking. It also takes me a while to process my own feelings, so when we talk about emotions or emotional situations, I’ll need time to wrap my head around it before coming up with a well thought-out response. So if I say something shallow or insensitive, it’s not because I don’t care. I’ll come up with an appropriate (and often articulate) response when I’ve given it the brain space it deserves.” –lauram403c29da7

5.

“I am absolutely awful at picking up on flirting, if it’s quite subtle I’ll just think you’re being friendly, it usually needs spelling out to me then I get caught by surprise and might get a bit awkward! Then I may need to spend a little while pondering my feelings if I don’t get a huge surge right then” –klmy

6.

“Some of us are asexual. But some of us aren’t. Just like neurotypicals it just depends on the person as to whether or not we enjoy sex.” –skylersunshineraes

7.

“It can be hard to tell if someone is into you at all. For years, I was completely oblivious to the fact that my now-girlfriend has feelings for me. I didn’t even realize we were in a relationship until a year after we’d gotten together. It’s also important that I can understand what’s been conveyed to me. I tend to misinterpret what’s being said sometimes.” –Sarah Harris

8.

“We love just the same as you . We love hard and we fall deep and we have preferences like you all.” –Will

9.

“I’m now in my 40’s, autistic, ADHD, pansexual, in a hetro-marriage with 2 children. I was undiagnosed until my late 30’s, it has been a complicated journey, this is just one of the many learnings, but so important. I was constantly being told my opinions were wrong or didn’t count…” –Nome

10.

“I cannot tell if someone is interested in me. At. All. Even if we have moved to texting. Even if we are actually spending time together.” –Screech’s Mom

11.

“That I feel no romantic or sexual urges toward anyone, I never have and never will. I do not like people and am perfectly fine with that, I don’t need to be fixed.” –khrushchev

12.

“Just be there for us and accept us and love us and that’s enough.” –Will

13.

“Thoughts you have in your first date with someone when you have autism:

“What is socially acceptable to wear/talk about/do on the first date?”

“Am I talking too much, not enough, too much on one subject?”

“Am I making eye contact?”

“What is x, y, z happens? What are my 3 backup plans for every scenario that enters my mind?” “I hope I didn’t screw this up. What if he thinks there’s something wrong with me or I’m weird?”

Dating is hard enough. Dating when you have autism is even harder.” –amandag4fe9e4ba0

14.

“That I don’t mean to come off as clingy. I’ve had so many people leave because I’ll send 10 messages at once and the don’t understand that that’s how I communicate. and that sometimes I overshare, and other times I have no idea how to express emotions.” –littlemix009

15.

“It takes a high level of trust and vulnerability to tell someone about having autism, especially someone you’re dating- there is enough of an unfortunate stigma that a realistic fear is that you’ll leave or treat me differently because of my diagnosis.” –amandag4fe9e4ba0

16.

“I don’t want to be “fixed”- being in a relationship does not give you the right to tell me what I should do differently or how I should behave. I am who I am and, while I want you to help me grow and become the best version of myself, my autism is not a barrier in our relationship- it’s just part of who I am.” –amandag4fe9e4ba0

17.

“A lot of people think autistic people don’t want a relationship, sex, kids, etc… because of our communication problems. Most of the people on the spectrum want that including me. The biggest BS I’ve heard is on a article i read few years back that someone thought every autists is infertile. I still think about it.” –roarhamre46

18.

“Don’t play mind games with us, if you like us tell us. I personally missed out on a relationship because a girl who later admitted that she liked me, was playing hard to get, so I assumed that she wasn’t interested, had she have been direct we probably would’ve been a thing.” –philipn4226793a2