Asperger’s And Autism: On Love, Relationships, And Gender Identity

People diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder may act, think, and feel a bit differently. However, they’re very much capable of maintaining meaningful relationships with friends, family, and a significant other. Although they have a disability, they can positively identify with romance and gender roles.

Romantic Relationships Of “Aspies” And “NTs”

Adults with Asperger’s (Aspie) may have difficulties in navigating the social world. They do not often exhibit signs of empathy and affection. They’re also not very conscious of other people’s emotions. Despite that, many relationships thrive with an Aspie partner.

A person with Asperger’s syndrome is no different from the rest of the normal crowd (neurotypical or NTs). Qualities such as beauty, personality, and intellect are also some of the criteria for attraction in Aspies.

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In some cases, people tend to find a partner who has the qualities they lack. Aspies are known for their awkward social skills. Therefore, Aspies may find a partner who is highly perceptive and can help them interact with people.

However, as a neurotypical partner of an Aspie, it will be a challenge to cope with his or her personality. Although many Aspie–NT couples who are still going strong, there are inevitably a few bumps in the road. Here are some traits you can expect from an Aspie partner:

  1. They Are Not Voluntarily Affectionate

We need to feel loved and secured as human beings. For people with Asperger’s, displaying such affections is not in their personality. Unlike NTs, the Aspie do not share the innate understanding for the need of warmth. For them, usual gestures of love are incomprehensible.

An Aspie in a relationship thinks of saying I love you, holding hands, and hugging as things in a to-do list to soothe their partner’s needs for affection. Sometimes they even need an explicit reminder to do these things.

They do not intend to hurt their partner by withholding these actions. It’s just that they do not feel the need for such displays of affection because they do not comprehend it as normal people do.

  1. They Are Too Independent

People with Asperger’s are not clingy. It would seem that they respect your space and independence for not always demanding to spend time with you. However, the reason they act this way is that they are very self-absorbed and do not pay attention to your interests.

Again, this is not intentional. They’re known to have incredible focus in doing tasks; however, this also implies that they have a narrow and concentrated focus on their self-interests.  This results to unintentionally putting themselves first before their partner.

  1. They Cannot Take Hints

An Aspie has difficulty catching people’s subtle display of emotions. Often they do not recognize body language and sarcasm. This phenomenon is called mind blindness.  Therefore, you should explicitly communicate your feelings and emotions with them.

Probably the best-known person in pop culture with Asperger’s is Sheldon Cooper, a character in a famous sitcom the Big Bang Theory. If you have seen the show, you can observe how unusual Sheldon interacts with his girlfriend in their relationship.

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Sheldon appears to be very self-centered and would even require a written agreement or rules for the relationship. These are surprisingly in detail such as “what to do during a date” and “when to hold hands.” The television show has perhaps exaggerated it a bit, but according to some real-life Aspies, a written set of rules helps them in the relationship. Without it, they feel lost.

Although a person with Asperger’s Syndrome does not portray the ideal qualities of a romantic partner, just like any of us, they can still love. Only they show it a bit differently.

Gender Identity And Expression

Love and romance are one of the many things that we share with those with autism. Moreover, given their unique personalities, these people usually are resolute on their gender orientation. But unlike their NT counterparts, they typically do not identify themselves with non-binary gender identities. In most cases, they would only be heterosexual, gay, or lesbian.

Source: flickr.com

Regarding gender expression, Aspies are not very much inclined to identify with the constructs for males and females. Instead, they’re more focused on sensory experiences. Therefore, the way they dress and the way they project themselves would only be for comfort and practicality rather than style and fashion.

Some people may question the preferred gender identity of these people because of their disability; however, like in love and romance, they’re capable of determining their sexuality. Also, like the NTs, people with Asperger’s syndrome and autism are also susceptible to gender identity crisis and gender dysmorphia.

Final Thoughts

People diagnosed with Asperger’s and autism may be different from the abled crowd in many ways, but they’re still capable of loving and managing their sexuality.

Even though people in the autism spectrum think, act, and feel a little differently, it does not mean that they’re less capable than NT people. When you have friends like this in your circle, or you’re in a relationship with one, the key is communication to know better how they feel.

It may be difficult to understand them at times, but to keep a healthy relationship with them, it is best to try to put ourselves in their shoes even if they cannot always do the same.

Mental Health 101: What To Do If Someone With Asperger’s Melts Down

Dealing with the symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome is undeniably challenging for anyone who has it. Although the condition is high-functioning autism – meaning, a person can typically attend regular school and pass as a regular human being – there are still instances when it makes you stand out in a not-so-good way. For example, you may not understand when someone cracks a joke or react quite well to sarcasm. If you do realize it later, it might embarrass you and knock your confidence level down a notch.

Nevertheless, this particular autism spectrum disorder does not merely affect the mental health of the patients. It changes the psychological well-being of their loved ones too, primarily after witnessing someone with Asperger’s syndrome experience sensory overload. Hence, the latter yells, cries, throws and breaks stuff, and acts violently towards people.

If you are a relative or friend of a person who has the same disorder, you should know what to do when he or she has a meltdown for the sake of your mental health.

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1. Don’t Get In The Way

The first thing you should bear in mind when someone you love breaks down is not to try to hold or hug him or her. Sensory overload is tricky to handle, you see. Even laying a finger on that person might enable his or her fight-or-flight reaction.

2. Avoid Forcing The Individual To Speak

In case your sibling, child, or colleague seems okay one second and then melts down another second, you should not bother to ask “What happened?” You won’t be able to extract a sound answer from this fellow at the moment. If we are honest, your question might even aggravate the condition as it may sound much louder in their head now.

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Source: pixabay.com

3. Keep An Eye On The Person

Take note of that fact that all meltdowns can quickly turn into dangerous situations. The individual cannot get a grip on reality due to his or her senses getting overwhelmed, and so it is possible for him or her to self-harm subconsciously. Though it may not happen often, it may still be best not to leave the person alone as a meltdown takes place.

4. Help Your Loved One Remember Coping Mechanisms

Assuming you have been living with an Asperger’s patient for some time now, you likely have an idea of what movements will allow him or her to overcome sensory overload. For instance, vocalizing, scratching, blinking, head-banging, and rocking physically. If you notice that the individual seems to have forgotten any of that, you may offer a subtle reminder without getting in their way still.

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5. Try Not To Feel Negatively When It Happens

Whenever you are in the room when your loved one’s Asperger’s is on attack mode, and he or she starts saying hurtful things, you should try not to let the words get inside your head. It is as if a wayward soul takes over his or her system at this point. He or she may not even remember whatever has been said when the meltdown stops. Thus, you should understand that the person does not mean anything he or she might talk about then.

Final Thoughts

Watching someone that you love deal with meltdowns because of an incurable disorder and being unable to make it stop for him or her may genuinely be unbearable for friends and family members of an Asperger’s patient. However, keep in mind that this person needs you now more than ever to feel as normal as possible. If you don’t take care of your mental health, you cannot help the disabled individual at all.

The Correlation Of Autism And Anxiety

Individuals on autism spectrum receive a clinical diagnosis of anxiety. However, it doesn’t limit the condition there. Children also experience subclinical levels of anxiety that don’t necessarily need a diagnosis. It affects their lives even without noticing any signs and symptoms.

 

Top-Down And Bottom-Up Data Integration

 

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The integration of top-down and bottom-up data is crucial in helping children with autism. The top-down process is where teachers provide parents with a standardized checklist and questionnaires about anxiety symptoms. It allows parents to monitor their children in their respective homes to know how often they show signs of anxiety. The bottom-up data, on the other hand, is the collection of data where teachers evaluate to understand what anxiety looks like to children experiencing it. The top-down and bottom-up data integration helps in getting a more in-depth and fuller description of what anxiety looks like in children with autism.

Anxiety undergoes a lot of description, which is why there’s a need to know its specifications. The development of an anxiety profiling system allows identifying children’s signature over the mental condition. It is called a signature because every child in the autism spectrum suffers from different signs and symptoms. The process allows teachers and parents to know if the symptoms of anxiety will stay the same as children grow of age or it will reveal changes as they cross different educational settings. Though the process may somehow take time, it is proven to show significant results to those who underwent anxiety profiling system.

 

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Understanding Primary Emotions

Understanding the primary emotions of children with autism is an essential factor in helping their developmental growth.  Their fear and anxiety give them a constant sense of doom. So to get a cut-down on the emotional and psychological dilemma, there must be sameness in children’s lives. There should be a predictable and safe routine environment where children can stay away from drastic changes so they can avoid getting freaked out. Though change is an inevitable event and no one knows what could happen, children with autism should get an idea that things will soon happen. It doesn’t have to be precise though. Encouraging a safe environment is enough to grow children with autism into adults who are flexible and adaptable.

 

Source: defense.gov

 

Less Anxiety With Visual Support

Visual support creates lesser anxiety for children with autism. With the use of a lot of pictures, it helps them understand and follow things thoroughly. It allows them to know entirely what they have to do every day in school or even at home. Since children with autism do not tend to initiate, visual representation breaks down their expectations and gets them to do each step. However, it is significant to note that every child is different. Therefore, not all visual representation applies to all of them. Depending on how severe the autism spectrum condition is and depending on the rate of their IQs, results may take time.

There is no easy way to teach children with autism anything, so patience is a must. Instead of pushing them to know things, allow them to learn it through themselves. It is essential to understand that these children need support, care, and attention, so the first way to do it is by removing their fear and anxiety out of the way.

Autism: What You Should Know and How You Can Handle It

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A child “on the spectrum” is what some people would refer to a child who is diagnosed with autism. This has also been mentioned in https://www.urgentteam.com/. Autism is not limited to just one particular type of condition. Instead, autistic conditions may vary in challenges that include trouble with social skills, learning disorders, repetitive behaviors and speech and nonverbal communication, to name a few.

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Vitamin D Deficiency Can Be Linked To Autism

How we take care of ourselves during pregnancy can certainly affect our unborn babies.

The recent study on autism spectrum disorders revealed that low vitamin D levels at birth were linked to the mental condition as seen in children at the age of 3 years. This is a very crucial medical information because a lot of pregnant mothers still do not take into consideration the importance of taking supplements and at the very least Vitamin D.

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Autism and Discipline

Raising and disciplining children is difficult because parents need to find balance in showing affection at the same time being an authority figure. It is quite common for parents and society to give a pass for children with autism. Often, screaming fits and tantrums would generally result to a child in the cozy corner (time-out) or might mean taking his gadget privileges. When these happen in children with autism, it appears to be acceptable and expected behavior. Adults especially parents may give a pass for inappropriate actions out of concern and understanding of the child’s condition; probably, with false beliefs that the child is not capable of better behavior or maybe, thinking that disciplining a child with autism will further complicate the situation. Whatever reasons they may possess, adults need to give structure and discipline to the child with autism. After all, even though they have a condition. In essence, these children are still kids who need direction and support from parents. This has been the emphasis of hopecounselingcenter.net/

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Asperger Syndrome and Basic Parenting Tips

Finding out that your child has Asperger’s syndrome will redefine your parenting roles. The condition would entail acceptance of the possible challenges for yourself as a parent, for your child with Asperger and the whole family. The good thing is more than ever, there are readily available resources, therapies, support group and forums to help the child as well as the family to lead fulfilling lives despite the condition.

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7 Constructive Discipline Techniques for Children With Autism

Parents aren’t always 100 percent sure if they are doing parenting right that’s why there are countless books, articles, journals and even internet forums on how to parent, discipline and raise children. The workload and stress of parenting an average child is nothing in comparison to a child with autism. It will require more research and a better understanding of the condition and its complexities for the parent to say that they are on the right track. One of the dilemma parents have with regards to their autistic child is disciplining: how to balance being affectionate but at the same time, be firm with your rules and how to properly carry out discipline technique in relative to the child’s condition.

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How To Deal with A Child Suffering From Autism

Having a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is very challenging. There are many things to take into consideration. First of all, it is of great importance to make your child feel that he has all your support, love and appreciation. Second, you need to protect your child from the people surrounding him. At this point, it is important to note that a lot of people may not have any clue regarding how to interact with someone who has autism.

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