Why finding love is hard for Autistic people

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Mikurotoro92
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03 Dec 2023, 11:30 am

There are 2 main reasons:

The disability

and

The effects caused by the disability

Let me explain

Autistic people tend to be isolated which is NOT good for or conducive to finding true love!

Finding love requires going out into the community talking to people and creating a relationship with them

Marriage is the natural next step after dating

In order to get married you MUST date someone for a certain period of time

This is hard for Autistic people because it is hard for us to get out of the house consistently to meet people

However it is NOT impossible!

Online dating is an option although it may not be safe for people with disabilities since we don't know how to properly vet or screen people

But it is an option

Another option would be to join a Day Program or ARC where you can actually be around other people

The other thing making it harder for Autistic people to find love and get married is we have a difficulty with initiating conversations

Relationships are built on communication and you have to know how to talk to your partner


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Mountain Goat
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03 Dec 2023, 1:25 pm

It varies from person to person how they need to work round and conquor their challenges to reach the goal of marriage and then live happily ever after (Or hopefully something like that!)

What I mean is that some on the spectrum have no difficulties in that area. While others have hurdles to mount.

BUT do not let the hurdles be a problem. Turn them into opportunities! For you going to a day centre could be the way to find love! Don't let it be the only means to find love as love can be found anywhere!

I do like your optimism. I think we all need that!


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nick007
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03 Dec 2023, 4:26 pm

Aspergers is a social disability & poor social skills can give others a bad impression. Giving bad impressions & not networking well can make it harder to find employment & keep jobs. Plus people with Aspergers tend to have various comorbid & unrelated disabilities that could potentially make it harder to be independent in other various ways. Not being independent can give others a bad impression, especially if they live in an area that tends to have a more negative opinion of disabled people. Plus some areas are a lot more disability friendly than others.

I'll use myself as an example. I cant drive(partly due to vision problems & getting directions confused) & my parents lived in a somewhat rural area with no public transportation system. There was not anything within a decent walking distance & most of the state is NOT disability friendly. A lot of the disability things are for specific diagnoses or being extremely disabled in one specific area/way. Whereas I have lots of disabilities but not completely in any area, like I'm extremely nearsighted but not quite bad enough to be considered legally blind so lots of disability services for the blind won't count me as blind. About the only program in that area which was supposed to help me with finding employment was Voc Rehab & they were a waste of my time. The 3 jobs I had managed to get were federal minimum-wage things & I was extremely lucky they gave me a chance. Having those jobs did not give women a good impression since I was in my mid 20s & not going to school.

I tried getting out in the community & meeting others in various ways(including volunteering, & joining a support group for depression, anxiety, & bipolar disorder) but a lot of the people I met were older & made comments about how they wished their daughters or granddaughters would be interested in a guy like me. The women around my age or younger I met either did not really like me or they saw me as a good friend they could complain about other guys to & some even thought I was gay till I made a move on them :wall: I did NOT make good impressions on dating sites either & I probably woulda done a lot better if I had better NT communication skills & was a bit more independent with life stuff.

I know that can sound very depressing. For a more positive tone I could talk a bit about how I did manage to get the 3 girlfriends I've had but that might be better for a slightly different kind of thread.


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Sigbold
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04 Dec 2023, 12:19 am

nick007 wrote:
I tried getting out in the community & meeting others in various ways(including volunteering, & joining a support group for depression, anxiety, & bipolar disorder) but a lot of the people I met were older & made comments about how they wished their daughters or granddaughters would be interested in a guy like me.


Most likely they see their daughters/granddaughters making the same mistakes as they did. Which unfortunately seems to be way to common. :|

But besides potential co-morbid or unrelated disabilities, there are might be other factors in plays. For example one might have intense childhood trauma's that might impair one's ability to court females he might be interested in.



Minervx_2
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04 Dec 2023, 2:33 pm

3 reasons imo:

1) Romantic attraction, flirting, dating, etc. involves a lot of subtlety, nuance and ambiguous communication. People on the spectrum are often not great at reading signals/cues.

2) Many people meet their partners through social environments and mutual friends. Some people on the spectrum have introverted hobbies.

3) Some people on the spectrum are unemployed or don't drive. And in many areas, you need to drive to meet people. Having a job around people can help expand your social circle and develop your social skills.



Minervx_2
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04 Dec 2023, 2:41 pm

Mikurotoro92 wrote:
Online dating is an option


Another factor is that many autistic men don't understand how to use dating apps effectively to get matches.

Dating apps can be challenging even for NT men, but it's harder when you're on the spectrum and may not know exactly how to showcase yourself to people who will judge you in 30 seconds.


Common mistakes men on the spectrum make on their profiles:

1) They don't put enough effort into taking pictures.

2) They don't really have a sense of what pictures are good/bad.

3) Some spend a lot of time indoors, so they don't have enough pics of themselves outdoors or doing things.

4) They may not be aware of how their facial expressions in pictures comes off to other people. They may think their photo is really nice because they like their haircut or clothes, but their facial expression looks uncomfortable or stiff to the observer.

5) They tend to send really stiff, formal and long messages to women, and they treat the interaction like it's a BAR Exam. Whereas light casual banter would be much better. 



DirkGently69
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04 Dec 2023, 3:19 pm

^^^ Minervx has it right. All the reasons he gave are exactly why I won’t use a dating site.

Over my whole life, I rarely take pictures of myself. I never know where to look and when asked to smile I either look very fake, or I think I’m smiling, but I’m actually not. Over the last 5 years I’ve probably taken a couple of hundred pictures in total, whereas my daughter, who got her latest phone under a year ago has something like 27,000, which I just can’t understand.

While I am not too bad at chatting online; it’s only because I have the time to think what I am saying, and it takes me a while to type it out. So while I may be able ‘get’ a date, I wouldn’t then want to meet them, as my social anxiety would kick in, and I would start catastrophising about what we would talk about, how long we would have to talk, am I staring too much. I sometimes don’t understand what topics are not appropriate for certain situations.

I’ve been divorced for about a year and a half now, but I have absolutely no desire to use a dating site, as I feel it’s way too much effort for minimum reward.

This post took me about 10 minutes to write, lol.



WantToHaveALife
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04 Dec 2023, 3:27 pm

i've had this mindset for several years now or more, and i've always felt its going to affect mens dating lives more than womens dating lives due to how for all-time, men have always been expected to make the first move and court women, be the initiators.



nick007
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04 Dec 2023, 8:31 pm

DirkGently69 wrote:
^^^ Minervx has it right. All the reasons he gave are exactly why I won’t use a dating site.

Over my whole life, I rarely take pictures of myself. I never know where to look and when asked to smile I either look very fake, or I think I’m smiling, but I’m actually not. Over the last 5 years I’ve probably taken a couple of hundred pictures in total, whereas my daughter, who got her latest phone under a year ago has something like 27,000, which I just can’t understand.

While I am not too bad at chatting online; it’s only because I have the time to think what I am saying, and it takes me a while to type it out. So while I may be able ‘get’ a date, I wouldn’t then want to meet them, as my social anxiety would kick in, and I would start catastrophising about what we would talk about, how long we would have to talk, am I staring too much. I sometimes don’t understand what topics are not appropriate for certain situations.

I’ve been divorced for about a year and a half now, but I have absolutely no desire to use a dating site, as I feel it’s way too much effort for minimum reward.

This post took me about 10 minutes to write, lol.
I had all those struggles too. I almost got no messages at all on dating sites unless they had a forum. I express myself a lot better on forums than PMs. Lots of people thought my profiles were well typed & kinda interesting to some. However my pix were not good, my hobbies were limited generic uninteresting things, & mentioning disabilities tends to turn women off.

I met all three of my girlfriends on forums. First was for a common interest & my second & third(current) on this forum.


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Mikurotoro92
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05 Dec 2023, 12:58 am

My therapist told me today that if I want to be in a serious long-term relationship (co-habitation or marriage) with a man that he should just come live with me & my brother

That way my brother won't be lonely and he won't have to worry about me leaving him to fend for himself!

But the thing is, what if I want to be alone with my boyfriend or husband?

How could we successfully achieve sex and intimacy when my brother is in the same house?

Rent a room at a hotel overnight?

What do you guys think?


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Minervx_2
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05 Dec 2023, 8:01 am

DirkGently69 wrote:
^^^ Minervx has it right. All the reasons he gave are exactly why I won’t use a dating site.


I meant my comments to be encouraging - not discouraging. As in men on the spectrum can get dates on apps if they use them correctly.

A lot of it comes down to just putting the time in. Trial and error. Taking lots of pics. There are educational videos on Youtube on portrait photography; putting a few hours into learning about what makes a good photo can make all the difference.

Or, if money is easier to come by than time, paying photographers for some professionally taken photos.



Last edited by Minervx_2 on 05 Dec 2023, 8:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

Minervx_2
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05 Dec 2023, 8:08 am

Minervx_2 wrote:
3 reasons imo:


Also, reason #4. Some people on the spectrum just don't want to put in the effort to date. They would like a partner, but they don't want to put in all of the effort that it takes to find one.

Just like how many people would like to be athletic, but they don't want to put the time/effort into the gym.

I notice a lot of people on here say they want to meet a partner. But they don't go outside or socialize much in real life. But then they also don't want to put the effort in to make a great dating profile.



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05 Dec 2023, 8:19 am

dating other autistic people or even broadly neurodivergent people has made things much easier for me to understand and communicate and get along in general


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rse92
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05 Dec 2023, 9:18 am

Mikurotoro92 wrote:
My therapist told me today that if I want to be in a serious long-term relationship (co-habitation or marriage) with a man that he should just come live with me & my brother

That way my brother won't be lonely and he won't have to worry about me leaving him to fend for himself!

But the thing is, what if I want to be alone with my boyfriend or husband?

How could we successfully achieve sex and intimacy when my brother is in the same house?

Rent a room at a hotel overnight?

What do you guys think?


At some point you have to stop overthinking this. Parents have sex lives while they live with their children, adults have sex lives while they care for elderly parents living in, and people have sex lives while they care for handicapped siblings.



rse92
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05 Dec 2023, 9:22 am

Minervx_2 wrote:
Mikurotoro92 wrote:
Online dating is an option


Another factor is that many autistic men don't understand how to use dating apps effectively to get matches.

Dating apps can be challenging even for NT men, but it's harder when you're on the spectrum and may not know exactly how to showcase yourself to people who will judge you in 30 seconds.


Common mistakes men on the spectrum make on their profiles:

1) They don't put enough effort into taking pictures.

2) They don't really have a sense of what pictures are good/bad.

3) Some spend a lot of time indoors, so they don't have enough pics of themselves outdoors or doing things.

4) They may not be aware of how their facial expressions in pictures comes off to other people. They may think their photo is really nice because they like their haircut or clothes, but their facial expression looks uncomfortable or stiff to the observer.

5) They tend to send really stiff, formal and long messages to women, and they treat the interaction like it's a BAR Exam. Whereas light casual banter would be much better. 


How did your efforts at online dating go? Did you have any dates?



Minervx_2
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05 Dec 2023, 9:27 am

I do get a fair bit of matches, and a few dates. I have a date tomorrow actually. But I often take breaks since I find messaging all of those people overwhelming. I've taken a break for the past few months.

That being said I'm far from perfect. And I still have a lot of work to do on my pictures and profile. I'm still taking a few new pics every week, and I'm going to pay a photographer sometime in the next few months.

But overall I have made a lot of progress compared to a few years ago.