Struggling with romantic relationships on the spectrum?

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Jamesy
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16 Nov 2020, 1:46 pm

Why are some people very successful with maintaining and establishing romantic relationships while others are not?

I know this has been talked about before but does it relate to mind blindness or something as to why we on the spectrum find it more of a struggle? Is it lack of empathy as well maybe? Poor social skills?

I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......



RightGalaxy
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22 Nov 2020, 9:12 pm

I still think that people on the spectrum are better off with others on the spectrum but that doesn't necessarily mean it will work out. There still has to be common interests and you both have to enjoy the same comforts.



dpcraig
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22 Nov 2020, 10:31 pm

I feel like the overall problem is that I can't meet the many expectations in a relationship, emotionally. I tend to share the emotions of who I'm with instead of having my own feelings that lead the way. I hope that makes sense. I know that I have empathy for people and feel that well enough. I just think that I will always be more reactive emotionally instead of the opposite. I know that it probably comes across as fear. It doesn't feel like fear. I'm more confused and frustrated than I have ever been afraid when a relationship doesn't work out. Family and friends tell me that I have not picked well in relationships, too, though. I'm a bit angry about that because I would have expected them to look out for me to let me know. I do wish I could read people better. I definitely know that I am never going to do well with a lady who is unhappy or depressed about herself and needs someone to make her happy instead of herself being able to. It wears me down and makes me want to be alone and reset and recharge. It makes my head hurt being around angry, sad people too much.



Clueless2017
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25 Nov 2020, 8:44 pm

Jamesy wrote:
Why are some people very successful with maintaining and establishing romantic relationships while others are not?

I know this has been talked about before but does it relate to mind blindness or something as to why we on the spectrum find it more of a struggle? Is it lack of empathy as well maybe? Poor social skills?

I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......


... ... ...

In my limited experience, married for less than two years to my beloved (undiagnosed Aspie) husband, i see how he struggles in the following respects:

***the ability to take turns in a conversation, because a conversation is a dialogue not a monologue...For the most part, i initiate the conversation, and he responds in brief or remains silent...Thankfully, i have learned to limit my conversation to matters of importance to not overwhelm him...

***the ability to express his desires, fears, hopes, plans for the future, and the like...This, i interpret as 'being secretive' when in fact, i am just not good at asking questions...I have to learn to ask the right questions, which will hopefully lead to more meaningful conversations between us...

***the ability to understand emotions in general and thus the ability to respond accordingly to others' emotions...Fortunately, i am very expressive and very in-tune with my emotions...When necessary, I do not mind having to explain myself in order for him to better understand my feelings...And i am also very good at asking for what i want from him, so he is never confused...I mean he never has to wonder about my expectations of him in his role as my husband...

***the ability to reciprocate in a like manner...For example, he is readily willing to share his time with me in an activity of his interest; yet, he is somewhat reluctant when it comes to joining me in something i like...Although, in his favor, i should state that he has made accomodations for my likes--though in very small doses...At this point in time, i try to focus on his efforts, which i very much appreciate...

***the ability to cultivate our relationship romantically on a regular basis...I often find myself forcing these emotional attempts for connection...Like watching a sunset together, sharing tea-time, even sharing a meal can be a struggle due to his issues with food...But i am patient, and i am confident that gradually, little by little, he will continue to improve in this respect as well...

***the ability to understand the concept of "We" in our relationship...That we are 'One', and therefore, he cannot make unilateral plans...That he must take me into consideration...(This is not necessarily an autistic trait, but i believe it is much more pronounced among those who are on the spectrum)...

Anyway, the above are only a few of the many struggles my beloved husband encounters in our relationship...Please know that i am NOT complaining about him...I HAVE ACCEPTED HIM, LIMITATIONS INCLUSIVE...And in his favor, you should all know that he has come long ways and continues to make improvements in all of the above-mentioned areas of social communication that make it difficult for us to 'connect' emotionally...

Hopefully, these real-life examples can shed some light as to why those who are on the spectrum struggle to maintain healthy relationships...You need a very patient and altruistic partner who is willing to learn to better understand autism...Be assured, my dear friends, that your special someone is out there, eager to meet you...Don't ever lose hope :wink: ...:heart: :heart: :heart:



funeralxempire
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25 Nov 2020, 9:22 pm

Jamesy wrote:
I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......


That's not actually true, even if it feels that way from a man's perspective. Grass is always greener effect.



Clueless2017
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25 Nov 2020, 9:50 pm

dpcraig wrote:
I feel like the overall problem is that I can't meet the many expectations in a relationship, emotionally. I tend to share the emotions of who I'm with instead of having my own feelings that lead the way. I hope that makes sense. I know that I have empathy for people and feel that well enough. I just think that I will always be more reactive emotionally instead of the opposite. I know that it probably comes across as fear. It doesn't feel like fear. I'm more confused and frustrated than I have ever been afraid when a relationship doesn't work out. Family and friends tell me that I have not picked well in relationships, too, though. I'm a bit angry about that because I would have expected them to look out for me to let me know. I do wish I could read people better. I definitely know that I am never going to do well with a lady who is unhappy or depressed about herself and needs someone to make her happy instead of herself being able to. It wears me down and makes me want to be alone and reset and recharge. It makes my head hurt being around angry, sad people too much.


... ... ...

Forgive me for intruding...You should know that when family and friends say that you are not choosing wisely, they are probably right...However, sharing their personal opinion about your lady(s) in due time may have led to conflict with you...In the neuro-typical world, the act of critizicing an adult's choices is interpreted as an intrusion of his or her privacy and a total lack of respect to his or her intelligence and independence...Instead, your family and friends opted for respecting your choice(s)...And at the same time, allowed you to find out on your own if such a lady was right for you...

Now that it is all in the past, inquire from each of them what it was specifically that they did not like about your lady(s)...???...Hopefully, with this information, you will begin to see a pattern as to the types of ladies you attract and why they are not a good match for you...This will surely lead to a better understanding as to what went wrong in these relationships...This information is very important to avoid making the same mistakes in the future...

Next time, introduce your new lady to your family and friends...And early in the courtship, when your new lady is not around, ask your family members and friends individually and specifically what they think about her...Tell them that you value their opinion, because you know that they want your wellbeing and happiness...And once they share their opinion with you, be ready to act accordingly...

In your search for true love, please do not be discouraged...As to me, i honestly thought the man for me did not exist...That is, until my late forties, when i finally met my beloved (Aspie) husband...I can say without reservation that i am happily married...So, there is definitely hope for you all, my dear friends...Best wishes in your search for that special someone...Don't give-up and do choose wisely as i did... :wink:

Post Script: There are happy women out there, looking for someone to cheer-up...You just have to look in the right places... :D



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25 Nov 2020, 10:02 pm

Clueless2017 wrote:
Jamesy wrote:
Why are some people very successful with maintaining and establishing romantic relationships while others are not?

I know this has been talked about before but does it relate to mind blindness or something as to why we on the spectrum find it more of a struggle? Is it lack of empathy as well maybe? Poor social skills?

I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......


... ... ...

In my limited experience, married for less than two years to my beloved (undiagnosed Aspie) husband, i see how he struggles in the following respects:

***the ability to take turns in a conversation, because a conversation is a dialogue not a monologue...For the most part, i initiate the conversation, and he responds in brief or remains silent...Thankfully, i have learned to limit my conversation to matters of importance to not overwhelm him...

***the ability to express his desires, fears, hopes, plans for the future, and the like...This, i interpret as 'being secretive' when in fact, i am just not good at asking questions...I have to learn to ask the right questions, which will hopefully lead to more meaningful conversations between us...

***the ability to understand emotions in general and thus the ability to respond accordingly to others' emotions...Fortunately, i am very expressive and very in-tune with my emotions...When necessary, I do not mind having to explain myself in order for him to better understand my feelings...And i am also very good at asking for what i want from him, so he is never confused...I mean he never has to wonder about my expectations of him in his role as my husband...

***the ability to reciprocate in a like manner...For example, he is readily willing to share his time with me in an activity of his interest; yet, he is somewhat reluctant when it comes to joining me in something i like...Although, in his favor, i should state that he has made accomodations for my likes--though in very small doses...At this point in time, i try to focus on his efforts, which i very much appreciate...

***the ability to cultivate our relationship romantically on a regular basis...I often find myself forcing these emotional attempts for connection...Like watching a sunset together, sharing tea-time, even sharing a meal can be a struggle due to his issues with food...But i am patient, and i am confident that gradually, little by little, he will continue to improve in this respect as well...

***the ability to understand the concept of "We" in our relationship...That we are 'One', and therefore, he cannot make unilateral plans...That he must take me into consideration...(This is not necessarily an autistic trait, but i believe it is much more pronounced among those who are on the spectrum)...

Anyway, the above are only a few of the many struggles my beloved husband encounters in our relationship...Please know that i am NOT complaining about him...I HAVE ACCEPTED HIM, LIMITATIONS INCLUSIVE...And in his favor, you should all know that he has come long ways and continues to make improvements in all of the above-mentioned areas of social communication that make it difficult for us to 'connect' emotionally...

Hopefully, these real-life examples can shed some light as to why those who are on the spectrum struggle to maintain healthy relationships...You need a very patient and altruistic partner who is willing to learn to better understand autism...Be assured, my dear friends, that your special someone is out there, eager to meet you...Don't ever lose hope :wink: ...:heart: :heart: :heart:


You are incredible. Are there more like you?


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Clueless2017
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25 Nov 2020, 11:16 pm

Mountain Goat wrote:
Clueless2017 wrote:
Jamesy wrote:
Why are some people very successful with maintaining and establishing romantic relationships while others are not?

I know this has been talked about before but does it relate to mind blindness or something as to why we on the spectrum find it more of a struggle? Is it lack of empathy as well maybe? Poor social skills?

I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......


... ... ...

In my limited experience, married for less than two years to my beloved (undiagnosed Aspie) husband, i see how he struggles in the following respects:

***the ability to take turns in a conversation, because a conversation is a dialogue not a monologue...For the most part, i initiate the conversation, and he responds in brief or remains silent...Thankfully, i have learned to limit my conversation to matters of importance to not overwhelm him...

***the ability to express his desires, fears, hopes, plans for the future, and the like...This, i interpret as 'being secretive' when in fact, i am just not good at asking questions...I have to learn to ask the right questions, which will hopefully lead to more meaningful conversations between us...

***the ability to understand emotions in general and thus the ability to respond accordingly to others' emotions...Fortunately, i am very expressive and very in-tune with my emotions...When necessary, I do not mind having to explain myself in order for him to better understand my feelings...And i am also very good at asking for what i want from him, so he is never confused...I mean he never has to wonder about my expectations of him in his role as my husband...

***the ability to reciprocate in a like manner...For example, he is readily willing to share his time with me in an activity of his interest; yet, he is somewhat reluctant when it comes to joining me in something i like...Although, in his favor, i should state that he has made accomodations for my likes--though in very small doses...At this point in time, i try to focus on his efforts, which i very much appreciate...

***the ability to cultivate our relationship romantically on a regular basis...I often find myself forcing these emotional attempts for connection...Like watching a sunset together, sharing tea-time, even sharing a meal can be a struggle due to his issues with food...But i am patient, and i am confident that gradually, little by little, he will continue to improve in this respect as well...

***the ability to understand the concept of "We" in our relationship...That we are 'One', and therefore, he cannot make unilateral plans...That he must take me into consideration...(This is not necessarily an autistic trait, but i believe it is much more pronounced among those who are on the spectrum)...

Anyway, the above are only a few of the many struggles my beloved husband encounters in our relationship...Please know that i am NOT complaining about him...I HAVE ACCEPTED HIM, LIMITATIONS INCLUSIVE...And in his favor, you should all know that he has come long ways and continues to make improvements in all of the above-mentioned areas of social communication that make it difficult for us to 'connect' emotionally...

Hopefully, these real-life examples can shed some light as to why those who are on the spectrum struggle to maintain healthy relationships...You need a very patient and altruistic partner who is willing to learn to better understand autism...Be assured, my dear friends, that your special someone is out there, eager to meet you...Don't ever lose hope :wink: ...:heart: :heart: :heart:


You are incredible. Are there more like you?

... ... ...
Thank you for your kind words...:heart: ...You encourage me to reinforce my efforts to better understand my beloved (Aspie) husband...As to your question...There is only ONE me... :wink: ...But, i'll give you a hint: My beloved husband and i met at a Christian meeting of Jehovah's Witnesses...Our spiritual orientation is our special bond...:wink:



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26 Nov 2020, 1:34 am

dpcraig wrote:
I feel like the overall problem is that I can't meet the many expectations in a relationship, emotionally. I tend to share the emotions of who I'm with instead of having my own feelings that lead the way. I hope that makes sense. I know that I have empathy for people and feel that well enough. I just think that I will always be more reactive emotionally instead of the opposite. I know that it probably comes across as fear. It doesn't feel like fear. I'm more confused and frustrated than I have ever been afraid when a relationship doesn't work out. Family and friends tell me that I have not picked well in relationships, too, though. I'm a bit angry about that because I would have expected them to look out for me to let me know. I do wish I could read people better. I definitely know that I am never going to do well with a lady who is unhappy or depressed about herself and needs someone to make her happy instead of herself being able to. It wears me down and makes me want to be alone and reset and recharge. It makes my head hurt being around angry, sad people too much.


What about just having female friends?
Any chance of that?


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Don't tell me white lies. Gaslight me at your peril. Don't give me your bad attitude. Hypnosis, psychosis. Tomarto, tomayto. "Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions." I didn't say that. Honey badger.
If I'm so bad, pass me by. ;)


And one more thing,


"A stranger is a friend gang-stalker you haven't met yet." Humour is not meant to be taken seriously, yet many on the left pervert its intent.
Truth may be inconvenient but it is never politically incorrect...The Oracle of Truth has spoken...8)


THERE WILL BE NO COUP IN AMERICA!


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26 Nov 2020, 7:38 am

Clueless2017 wrote:
Mountain Goat wrote:
Clueless2017 wrote:
Jamesy wrote:
Why are some people very successful with maintaining and establishing romantic relationships while others are not?

I know this has been talked about before but does it relate to mind blindness or something as to why we on the spectrum find it more of a struggle? Is it lack of empathy as well maybe? Poor social skills?

I know men in general are at an extra disadvantage in dating......


... ... ...

In my limited experience, married for less than two years to my beloved (undiagnosed Aspie) husband, i see how he struggles in the following respects:

***the ability to take turns in a conversation, because a conversation is a dialogue not a monologue...For the most part, i initiate the conversation, and he responds in brief or remains silent...Thankfully, i have learned to limit my conversation to matters of importance to not overwhelm him...

***the ability to express his desires, fears, hopes, plans for the future, and the like...This, i interpret as 'being secretive' when in fact, i am just not good at asking questions...I have to learn to ask the right questions, which will hopefully lead to more meaningful conversations between us...

***the ability to understand emotions in general and thus the ability to respond accordingly to others' emotions...Fortunately, i am very expressive and very in-tune with my emotions...When necessary, I do not mind having to explain myself in order for him to better understand my feelings...And i am also very good at asking for what i want from him, so he is never confused...I mean he never has to wonder about my expectations of him in his role as my husband...

***the ability to reciprocate in a like manner...For example, he is readily willing to share his time with me in an activity of his interest; yet, he is somewhat reluctant when it comes to joining me in something i like...Although, in his favor, i should state that he has made accomodations for my likes--though in very small doses...At this point in time, i try to focus on his efforts, which i very much appreciate...

***the ability to cultivate our relationship romantically on a regular basis...I often find myself forcing these emotional attempts for connection...Like watching a sunset together, sharing tea-time, even sharing a meal can be a struggle due to his issues with food...But i am patient, and i am confident that gradually, little by little, he will continue to improve in this respect as well...

***the ability to understand the concept of "We" in our relationship...That we are 'One', and therefore, he cannot make unilateral plans...That he must take me into consideration...(This is not necessarily an autistic trait, but i believe it is much more pronounced among those who are on the spectrum)...

Anyway, the above are only a few of the many struggles my beloved husband encounters in our relationship...Please know that i am NOT complaining about him...I HAVE ACCEPTED HIM, LIMITATIONS INCLUSIVE...And in his favor, you should all know that he has come long ways and continues to make improvements in all of the above-mentioned areas of social communication that make it difficult for us to 'connect' emotionally...

Hopefully, these real-life examples can shed some light as to why those who are on the spectrum struggle to maintain healthy relationships...You need a very patient and altruistic partner who is willing to learn to better understand autism...Be assured, my dear friends, that your special someone is out there, eager to meet you...Don't ever lose hope :wink: ...:heart: :heart: :heart:


You are incredible. Are there more like you?

... ... ...
Thank you for your kind words...:heart: ...You encourage me to reinforce my efforts to better understand my beloved (Aspie) husband...As to your question...There is only ONE me... :wink: ...But, i'll give you a hint: My beloved husband and i met at a Christian meeting of Jehovah's Witnesses...Our spiritual orientation is our special bond...:wink:


Ah. Ok.


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Joe90
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26 Nov 2020, 7:03 pm

I seem to be good at relationships. I have an NT boyfriend, 20 years older than me and he likes a lot of the things I hate, but we still get along great to the point where we are soulmates. He's been taken advantage of by women in the past, so he's happy to have actually found a woman like me because he knows I am loving and caring and wouldn't take advantage of him. And he doesn't take advantage of me either. We're together because we love each other.

But my ASD doesn't seem to interfere with relationships. My ADHD does more, because he is often telling me off for being too impulsive, inattentive*, hyperactive, disorganised and very expressive. But it isn't enough to ruin a relationship though, because he also says that I am very loving, affectionate, understanding, trusting, and open about my feelings.
Sometimes he can be the difficult one, no joke. Sometimes I feel like I'm the NT and he's the Aspie! 8O
Like if something is bothering him (like an unpaid bill or something) he doesn't always tell me. Instead he just stomps around in a bad mood, even if I calmly ask him if anything is on his mind. I tell him that I can't help him or comfort him if he doesn't tell me what is on his mind, and stomping around in a bad mood just gets me in a bad mood too and we end up yelling at each other. But if he tells me why he's in a bad mood then I can better understand and try to help resolve the issue or just get him to talk about it. I talk about what's on my mind a lot, and it does help. If I am feeling sad or worried or whatever, I tell him. Then he'll know and can help resolve whatever is making me feel that way, or just talk about it.
I'm the sort of girlfriend that LOVES talking. I don't have any special interests so I do not talk about the same thing. I love hearing about his life before I met him, and his family. He's had quite an eventful past so I like hearing about it. I even love it when he shows me his old photos.

So I'm not really the typical "Aspie partner". But I do have a high EQ, and I believe that helps a lot. Yes being an empath may sound wonderful but it has its downsides too.


*Inattentive as in finding it hard to sit still and pay attention for too long like when watching TV.


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IonaT
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26 Nov 2020, 7:57 pm

It's easier for girls.

Especially true for autistic people.



Pepe
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26 Nov 2020, 8:29 pm

IonaT wrote:
It's easier for girls.

Especially true for autistic people.


Yep.
I'm thinking of having surgery to remedy that advantage. :mrgreen:


_________________
Laughter is the best medicine. Age-appropriate behaviour is an arbitrary NT social construct.
Don't tell me white lies. Gaslight me at your peril. Don't give me your bad attitude. Hypnosis, psychosis. Tomarto, tomayto. "Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions." I didn't say that. Honey badger.
If I'm so bad, pass me by. ;)


And one more thing,


"A stranger is a friend gang-stalker you haven't met yet." Humour is not meant to be taken seriously, yet many on the left pervert its intent.
Truth may be inconvenient but it is never politically incorrect...The Oracle of Truth has spoken...8)


THERE WILL BE NO COUP IN AMERICA!


funeralxempire
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26 Nov 2020, 8:36 pm

Pepe wrote:
IonaT wrote:
It's easier for girls.

Especially true for autistic people.


Yep.
I'm thinking of having surgery to remedy that advantage. :mrgreen:


There's surgery to make one less autistic? 8O



IonaT
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26 Nov 2020, 8:39 pm

autistic women have it easy compared to autistic men in the relationship game.

It may be difficult for both, but well, it's clear who has more hoops to leap through.



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26 Nov 2020, 9:48 pm

Well it does seem that there are more guys on WP saying they can't find a girlfriend than there are women saying they can't find a boyfriend. It seems that more women here are actually in relationships more than guys are. So maybe it is easier for women on the spectrum to find boyfriends. Obviously some Aspie women do struggle to find a boyfriend but I think it's more common for Aspie guys to struggle with finding a girlfriend.

I have read somewhere that autistic girls in their teens and 20s find romance easier than making friends, while autistic boys in their teens and 20s find romance harder than making friends. I don't know if that's true for everybody on the spectrum but it does seem plausible, in my experience anyway. In school shy/geeky/outcast boys got together with other shy/geeky/outcast boys and they hung about together and formed a group, but shy/geeky/outcast girls often hid their shyness/geekiness/outcastness and sometimes acted bitchy towards other girls who couldn't quite hide their weirdness, so it was harder for shy/geeky/outcast girls to find other girls like themselves. My Aspie brother has never had a girlfriend but he had a lot of boy friends in school and even now.

But I think I've gone off-topic here, sorry about that. :oops:


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