What are relationships appropriate to developmental level?

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dustintorch
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10 Feb 2010, 10:55 am

Can someone help me with this. The DSM-V is coming out soon. The only thing I'm confused about in the draft is, "failure to develop and maintain relationships, appropriate to developmental level." I've always one or two friends throughout my life. I've developed relationships with people. I haven't maintained a single relationship from my past though, so I guess there's my answer. But I still talk on the phone to people I met 3 years ago. The problem is, I've moved around so much I never really had a chance to maintain relationships anyways. But I don't talk on the phone to anyone I met before 3 years ago. What is appropriate?!?! I have no idea and it's confusing me.



ToughDiamond
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10 Feb 2010, 11:03 am

I expect you'd qualify as failing to develop...(etc). It's much like what you've said - small number of friends, poor retention time. Presumably slow to make new friends as well.

I don't know of any figures for what's considered to be normal. There must be national averages for these parameters somewhere.



LipstickKiller
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10 Feb 2010, 11:04 am

I don't have normal peer relations. I can't turn acquaintances into friends, I always end up either on the outside or smack in the middle of attention (usually going on about something I find interesting), but never as part of a friendly community. I have one friend I see on a regular basis, we both have autistic children.

Otherwise my friends are my siblings, my father and my spouse, who is more than twice my age.

The evaluating psychologist said that's not normal peer relations. Other than that, I can't say. Hope it helps.



Danielismyname
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10 Feb 2010, 11:05 am

The DSM-IV puts it as:

Quote:
There may be failure to develop peer relationships appropriate to developmental level (Criterion A2) that may take different forms at different ages. Younger individuals may have little or no interest in establishing friendships. Older individuals may have an interest in friendship but lack of understanding the conventions of social interaction.


I guess they've been looking at all of the outcome studies where it shows most with an ASD are socially isolated, even as adults, and family members or roommates/carers are the only social relations the people have, and it's not appropriate and normal to just have these. Add in all of the other points, and you have the most typical/common representation of someone with an ASD.



Callista
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10 Feb 2010, 11:19 am

You're on the low end of "appropriate" or the high end of "not appropriate", I think. That'd be a judgment call for your shrink.


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dustintorch
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10 Feb 2010, 11:24 am

Ok, well then I guess I still qualify then, thanks. That one has always confused me, especially since my dad always brings up the fact that I did have friends. My friends were usually much older or younger than me and the one's my age took a very very long time to make. As in, they were very mean to me until they got to know me, and then became friends after a while. My dad thinks that just because I was friends with the neighboor's kid, who was 3 or 4 years younger than me, I'm normal. I don't think that's right though. At school, I was pretty much an outcast with people my age and I really tried not to be.



zippy256
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10 Feb 2010, 5:17 pm

One explanation that I've been given relates specifically to friends within your own age group. I don't suppose that is relevant in terms of an adult diagnosis. For example, throughout school I had very few or no friends in my own year, but had a few that were two years below me, and could talk to some of the teachers as peers.