social skills

Can You Be Yourself On Dates?

If you’re like me, there are lots of questions that race through your mind when you prepare to go out on a date. Do I look polished enough? Am I going to click with this person? Did we pick the right venue to go out to? And then there’s the one question always gnawing at the back of my skull about my autism: can I be myself?

It's Never Too Late To Start To Date

Being autistic, some things just haven’t come as naturally for me as they seem to for other people. Unfortunately, these have included hallmarks of American life often used to symbolize being “an adult” like driving on my own or getting my first paid job. But human beings are not on a strict timetable to do all the same things at the same time. This is just as true of dating like anything else. Just because you (or I) haven’t been actively dating when a lot of other people in your life have doesn’t make you (or me) a failure. You’re just on your own timetable. So am I.

The Importance of Becoming the Examples We Want to See

I didn't see other autistic people in social scenarios I couldn't manage, so I couldn't imagine myself managing them. Attending my college’s autism group provided me an environment I never knew I needed. Being surrounded by other autistic people, I had found a rare secure place to socialize, one that let me start to discover other places I could be social in, too.

Autism, Romance And How We See Other People

As a person on the Autism spectrum, I know all too well that living with any sort of disability brings about a barrage of challenges. Your own difficult experiences living with those challenges are important and you have a right to feel all kinds of emotions about them, including frustration at the larger world. However, just as your own humanity and emotions should not be discounted, the same goes for other human beings.

How Do I Tell a Date I'm Autistic?

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all process for tackling this issue, but here's a little help from one person with Autism to another, so you can figure out some concrete ways of scaling what can feel like an immense social mountain.