Romance and Relationships On the Autism Spectrum

Romance_and_Autism

It is quite a tragic reality for ASD Adults and youth that relationships are often an unobtainable pipedream if not a fantasy. Given the nature of adult autism traits, these would often discourage potential partners from pursuing a relationship with such an individual on the Adult Autism Spectrum. Individuals with high functioning autism often feel rejected or unwanted and thus their self-worth diminishes while highly confident neurotypical adults end up courting their desired partner successfully.

Intimacy and Sex in Autistic Adults

Sexual contact in high functioning ASD Males is often brief and limited, whereas in females on the autism spectrum vulnerability is a serious issue and could be misinterpreted as promiscuity. Data shows that it is not uncommon for them to be coerced by a stronger and abusive neurotypical male or worse, trapped in a difficult relationship. With autistic adult males, problems abound too as they will seize any opportunity that comes their way and often an undesirable female partner may feed off this weakness for personal gain at the expense of the autistic adult.

Money

Money may be spent on needless things and the gullible male partner with the adult autism diagnosis is often taken advantage of or bullied by such a neurotypical person with devious intentions.

Meltdowns

Both male and female on the spectrum suffer from meltdowns as a result and in such cases, many autistic undiagnosed adults have faced trouble with the law and authorities due to adult autism meltdowns – these can occasionally be manifested with violent overtones if not kept in check. It is, therefore, crucial to understand potential signs of autism in adults so that they are not being shunned or punished for something beyond their control yet this by no means justifies abuse or any violent behaviour,

This is merely insight of how adults with autism can encounter problems in the realm of romance. It does not imply that they should be turned away because of it but rather awareness should be nurtured. Often the ASD’s inability to grasp a third-person perspective has made this a lot harder for neurotypical people to understand them.

A fine example is that an autistic adult male may inappropriately loiter around a female’s workplace who he happens to like or even hover nearby, not understanding what personal space means. Tragically, this is frequently misinterpreted as stalking and/or harassment and creates misunderstandings between both parties concerned. Another example would be constant texts or phone calls to a specific person they like. This has no sinister intentions but the person in question who is liked by the autistic adult male will have a hard time trying to understand that.

Yet many rewarding friendships have successfully been forged between neurotypical and individuals with adults’ autism and the latter prove to be trustworthy lifelong friends as they mean the person no harm and the neurotypical adult in question frequently appreciates their presence as a person they can confide in.

All in all, the mix of autism and adults affects the concerned individual with the diagnosis, in all walks of life. Whether it is social, romance and in often case financial deficiencies, which may limit their independence to a degree (see blog on this site on “Employment”).

Autism traits also leave loved ones and relatives concerned and even protective of the ASD individual and thus may even limit their horizons in relationships as the neurotypical female seeks an alpha male with a similar degree of self-confidence and maturity as displayed in neurotypical men. Likewise, females on the spectrum may even be constrained by relatives and friends who fear for their safety and vulnerability and know the devious nature of the neurotypical universe at large. Another common debilitating factor is often the presence of the adult autism meltdowns mentioned previously.

Such an occurrence may easily destroy a relationship in its entirety as the neurotypical partner fears the individual or even finds such events unpleasant due to something beyond their partners’ control.

Conclusion

Having said all of this, providing the necessary awareness and familiarity is present in the ASD’s NT partner, many very warm, loving and lasting relationships and marriages of this nature have been made and blossom. As daunting as all this sounds, there is therefore always hope.

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2 thoughts on “Romance and Relationships On the Autism Spectrum”

  1. Fantastic Article,
    Really enjoyed reading this article as I feel information like this could help people suffering from Autism. My eldest daughter has some mild Autism and after reading this article I wonder if maybe she is with a partner similar to how you described.

    I personally don’t have Autism but understand the frustration of health issues and relationships. I suffer from chronic fatigue and as you may imagine have similar doubts when entering relationships.

    Thank you

    • Hi Sam
      Thanks so much. Dealing with invisible health issues can be very challenging. I hope your daughter finds happiness and success. If you wish to contribute based on your experiences with your daughter, drop me a note.
      Chronic fatigue can be very debilitating I know.
      Wishing you well.
      Mike

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