Sunday, June 16, 2024

How To Date Someone With Autism

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They Take Their Time To Adjust

Autism/Asperger’s Dating: How to Talk to Someone and Get a Date

Since they are so accustomed to a routine, changing their habits and adjusting to anything new may not be easy. In case you shift to a new house or start living together, the experience can be overwhelming for them. So, you need to introduce changes to them slowly and gradually. Give them time to adjust and do not rush into anything.

Pick The Right Setting

When you are going on a date, its important to think about the setting in advance. By selecting a venue that will be comfortable for you and your date, you can focus your attention on getting to know each other.

If you quickly string together a date, your date may be uncomfortable with the lack of information and the setting of the date. Using forethought can allow you to evade potential social barriers at a location.

Someone who is autistic may get anxiety from going to a new place with a stranger that is full of busy stimuli. The best tool you can use to pick a location is your date, its as simple as connecting with them about their favorite place before embarking on your date. Finding a neutral ground that is already familiar can ease a lot of anxiety about an upcoming date.

Try To Be Supportive Of Their Interests

Dating someone with autism means partaking in their interests. A person with autism likely has a few areas of interest they focus on, and they may be uninterested in activities or topics unrelated to these specific areas of interest.

When they share one of their interests with you, try to be supportive and take part in it, at least sometimes. At the very least, you must be prepared to give them time to explore their interests and not take offense if they seem uninterested in the things you love.

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They Are Not All The Same

Too often we might want to box everyone with autism and characterize them as all being the same. This common misconception is flawed. The condition affects everyone differently and each case will require a different type of specialized attention. It is important to treat everyone with autism respectfully and celebrate their individuality. Knowing one person with autism means nothing because they are all so uniquely different.

Dont Label Them According To Their Disorder

Do you like dating a person with autism?

Autism is referred to as Autism spectrum disorder for a reason. There is a range of different presentations of autism.

Some people may have severe communication deficits with autism, whereas others may just present as somewhat quirky with atypical interests.

Therefore, it is important that you avoid jumping to conclusions and assuming that because a person has autism, they will act in a specific way.

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Tips For Dating Someone On The Spectrum

So you’ve found someone you’d like to date, but they are autistic. What’s important to do is to be open and learn what makes the autistic person unique. Try to understand their likes, frustrations, and the way they communicate. It also helps to be patient with your partner and the way they do things. Don’t judge them for their behavior.

People with autism also like to receive feedback. Since they can’t read your body language, they won’t know if they offended you with a seemingly harmless joke unless you tell them. If their behavior is inappropriate in certain situations, tell them so. Or, if they overshare their feelings but you find it overwhelming, you can work together to find a solution that works for both of you. It’s important to bridge communication gaps and here are some tips to help you with that.

Keep in mind that these are general tips and may need to be adjusted to the persons specific needs and preferences.

Actively Learn About Each Other

Learning about one another is one of the foundational aspects of dating. When you are dating someone on the autistic spectrum, you should learn about their unique needs and try to accommodate them.

Its important that you actively learn their comfort levels. It is important to learn about the fixations, behaviors, and comforts of your date. However, dating someone who is differently abled does not make you privy to their medical reports.

It can be difficult to keep a steady flow of conversation when an individual becomes fixated on a particular topic. As time goes on you can take note of what types of conversations or topics trigger excitement or anxiety.

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We Won’t Want To Just Get You Into Bed Straight Away

Don’t get me wrong, we lust for the physical aspect of a relationship, just like anyone else. It’s just not our only priority like it may be for some men. Even if emotions are difficult for us, we still like the emotional side of a relationship and may even have a stronger desire for romance than most people.

Take Her Out On Quiet Dates

Dating an Autistic Person | Autism Awareness Week

Sure, do all the standard dates. But someone on the spectrum also likes quiet ones just the two of you and a couple of books.

You can literally just sit in a cafe together and read. Or you can go for a walk while making a little chit chat, but not too much.

Dates like these show her that youre solid material. You dont have to be constantly amused and entertained.

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Give Her A Little Space

Someone whos high-functioning could go half their lives without fully understanding what they are. We just know were weird, so we spend years learning how to mask our true selves.

Heres what you should know about an autistic chick:

  • She loves big chunks of solitude
  • She can focus on one thing for hours
  • She can talk about that thing all day
  • She loves organizing her stuff
  • She reads manuals and dictionaries for fun
  • She struggles to express emotion
  • She also struggles to interpret them
  • She has supersonic hearing and/or other senses
  • She doesnt follow pointless directions

That means her symptoms probably translate into things like disdain for live music and people who whisper during movies. She probably likes going places where there arent that many people.

Her idea of a fun weekend is to re-organize her closet.

Going on a date with you is fun, but also exhausting especially until she starts to feel comfortable in your presence.

They Cannot Go On Regular Dates

Going to a bar sounds like a good idea for a date. But for someone on the spectrum, going to the bar may be the most uncomfortable experience. A person with autism can be sensitive to noise and crowds . If your partner is hypersensitive to sounds, plan your date according to their comfort level and preferences.

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Relationships With Autistic People

There are many successful partnerships with autistic people and those who choose to marry and have a family and are usually happy, however they may experience difficulties as quite often an Autistic person will be unable to express their full feelings and emotions so difficulties may occur. Everyone with Autism will experience different effects from the conditions but mostly they will be based around emotions and feelings and often with a feeling of being isolated and detached.

We Won’t Cheat On You Ever

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Due to the fact we aren’t the most confident at talking to people we don’t know, we’re unlikely to go out, find someone new and leave you lonely and heartbroken. If you date one of us, the chances of gaining a committed partner and a stable relationship are that little bit higher.

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Give Us Time To Process Small Or Big

After weve been together for a while and decisions may arise, whether it be something small like trying a new restaurant or something bigger such as getting married or moving in together, understand that transitions can often be difficult at first for us to comprehend. This isnt different for any human being on this planet. Sometimes transitions can tend to make us feel overloaded. Dont feel discouraged. If it works out and we both care for each other we will make it work.

Like autism, love doesn’t discriminate based on race, age, gender, religion, sexuality and disability.

Love me for the person I am and Ill do the same with you.

This guest post is by Kerry Magro, a motivational speaker, best-selling author whos on the autism spectrum. You can learn more about Kerry on .

Watch Out For The Show Offs

Listen to people as they talk. How often do they mention their achievements, promotions, awards and successes? If this happens a lot, it is a sure indication that this person has an over-inflated view of his/her achievements. They are unlikely to be modest or show humility. What a pity! Another person to avoid.

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Is Anger A Frequent Occurrence

All too often, angry reactions which may seem to be excessive are a sign that there are underlying issues. Do not think that every person who just snaps and throws his/her weight around mentally and physically is just reacting normally. Everyone has an occasional angry outburst when driving or when things go pear-shaped.

But if this is almost a daily occurrence, then you need to discover why and maybe avoid that person. Too often, anger will escalate to violent and aggressive behavior. You do not want to be near someone who thinks violence can solve personal or global problems.

Begin Autism Therapy In California:

Dating someone with autism

Navigating romantic relationships with autism can be challenging, but we have services for you that can help. You dont have to go through this alone. I offer a wide range of services for autism including help in romantic relationships. There are a few steps you can take to get more information.

  • Contact Open Doors Therapy and schedule a free 30-minute consultation call
  • and like my page to stay connected with our social community
  • and get news about neurodiversity and living on the autism spectrum
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    Dont Assume That Your Partner Knows How You Are Feeling

    Autism and love can be challenging because your partner may not always be able to read your emotions.

    Keep in mind that autism involves difficulty with communication, so dating someone with autism means that your partner may not be able to tell from your body language or tone of voice that you are upset.

    Be prepared to explain your feelings to your partner and be open with them when you are upset because they truly may not notice that you arent acting like yourself.

    Recognize And Address Sensory Needs

    Sensory issues very often affect individuals on the autism spectrum. As mentioned before, one or more of the senses may be affected. Senses may be overly sensitive and/or under sensitive . Some people with ASD are hypersensitive to various lighting. For example, they see the blinking and/or hear the buzzing of fluorescent lighting. For some, headaches are triggered. A person on the autism spectrum may be overly sensitive to various smells and/or sounds in the environment. Light touch may feel like pins yet actual pinpricks may not be felt at all.

    In some situations, a person on the autism spectrum may appear not to process sensory information from one or more of the familiar five senses of sight, smell, sound, taste and touch. They may seem unaware of what is in plain sight and/or process words as noise. These situations can seem very curious. Three other less known sensory systems are also often affected for many on the autism spectrum. There are the vestibular system , the proprioceptive system and the interoceptive system . Interoception is often referred to as the eighth sense.

    At home, sleeping in total darkness and using a weighted blanket can be helpful for some. At home, hopefully, it is easier to adjust lighting and control or mask sounds and smells in the environment. Sometimes working with an occupational therapist who is trained in sensory integration can be beneficial.

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    Tips And Resources For Dating Someone With Autism

    A specific component of the dating world that people with autism struggle with is flirting. PEERSa UCLA program that educates teens and young adults with autism about dating etiquettebreaks down tips for flirting into manageable steps that are easy for people with autism to grasp.

    For example, PEERS offers the following list of tactics for initiating contact with another person:

    • Notice the other person and briefly make eye contact.
    • Glance away .
    • Give a slight smile.
    • Begin a casual conversation and find common interests.
    • Use a common interest as inspiration for a date activity.
    • Assess their interest level first by asking What are you doing this weekend? If they say, Nothing, thats probably a good sign that theyre interested in going, and you can feel confident asking them out on a date.
    • Exchange contact information and select a day and time for your date.

    Dating Someone With High Functioning Autism

    Autism and Dating

    The term high functioning autism is used in relation to people who have explicit symptoms of autism, but at the same time, their speech skills and level of intelligence are well developed. It is opposite to dating someone with mild autism. When looking at people with high functioning autism, many usually notice only their advantages.

    Especially, after it was hypothesized that Bill Gates, Vincent Van Gogh, Albert Einstein, and Isaac Newton are among them. In fact, not everything in the garden is rosy. People with high functioning autism are much harder to cope with life than others. Despite their apparent adaptation to the environment, they are just as hard to interact with the world as other autists. They have a similar reaction to touchy situations, and it often surprises those around them who think that they are dealing with ordinary people. Reactions of surprise and bewilderment from colleagues, relatives, and friends can additionally traumatize a person with high functioning autism. It leads to depression. Therefore, they suffer from difficulties at work and in building romantic relationships.

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    Dating An Autistic Man

    Due to AS being an invisible condition many find an initial date very challenging work and very emotionally draining but if you understand they are coming from a different angle, and accept that, then dating can be fun. Never think of what others say about Autism as you can easily work around feelings. But you have to remember, that whilst you may need a cuddle he may need his distance.

    Each date can bring new challenges so remember if he wants to talk about himself then let it flow. It may be hard to begin with but understanding that his social skills set is on a different level and learning all the little hidden identities are all part of the learning curve. Small talk may prove impossible but try to get on a subject that interests him and always try to be honest in a situation, and never brag or joke as it probably wont be appreciated.

    Learn And Use Communication Strategies

    Optimum communication is important in all relationships. Social communication, by definition in the DSM-5 , is a deficit for a person with ASD. Non-verbal communication, such as interpreting facial expressions, gestures and vocal intonation is often extremely difficult. Verbal communication can be difficult for people with autism to initiate. These difficulties are due to a difference in neurology and not a lack of motivation.

    It is helpful to your partner if your communication is clear, calm and predictable. The person with ASD will usually want to meet their partners needs once s/he understands how to meet those needs. Explicitly communicating your social, emotional, mental, physical, including sexual needs, is important. Together, partners should discuss information about behavioral expectations. Think in terms of explanation instead of correction. Tell your partner your expectations and have him tell you his expectations.

    Often you will need to provide very explicit and concrete instructions that your partner can follow. For example, if you need your partner to help with a chore such as doing laundry, give step-by-step directions on what, when and how the clothes need to be washed. If your partner cannot figure out what to wash, perhaps having a system of preparing laundry baskets is needed. For example, circular baskets can be used for dirty laundry and square baskets for clean laundry.

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    Is It Challenging To Date A Person With Autism

    That’s the beauty of it. It’s both challenging and rewarding. But the truth is that all relationships are complicated. Each individual has their own interests, pet peeves, and quirks. It’s essential to see past an autistic person’s quirks and understand where the symptoms are coming from. For example, an autistic adult has difficulty adjusting to routine changes or can talk for HOURS about a particular interest. Knowing the signs of autism can make the romantic relationship more successful.

    While people with high-functioning autism have a difficult time communicating, many do desire intimate relationships. A recent study found that individuals with autism have the same interest in romantic relationships as those without autism. Unfortunately, their relationships tend not to last as long because of the anxiety. It might even be difficult for them to meet new people, but here are some helpful tips for dating on the autism spectrum.

    What Did Dating Someone With An Autistic Child Look Like For Me

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    The first part of our relationship started with mostly phone calls, texts and emails.

    In the beginning she and I only got to see each other once a month or so.

    We went out on three or four dates, and talked a ton before she arranged a sitter to watch John once every two weeks so we could see one another on a regular basis.

    This lasted for a few more months until we were to the point where she was ready to introduce me to her son and I was ready to meet him.

    I had answered my questions regarding a potential future with her and her son, and she had answered her own questions about our future together.

    It was still a few months before I was allowed to watch her son by myself, but the rest is history. Nearly a decade later and we are still together!

    If you want more on that story, you really should check out my early videos where I describe dating Bella, first meeting John and how I began learning about autism.

    The first one, is My Introduction To Autism. This link will open my YouTube channel in a new tab. Lots of info there!

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