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For many teens with autism, the issues of dating and sexuality come up later than one might expect. Some are eager as young teens, while others don’t appear interested until much later.
Regardless, the physical changes that accompany adolescence make these issues relevant for most families.
Ten tips With these challenges in mind, we’ve compiled some tips for helping your teen approach dating and intimacy. How you apply them should depend on the age and experience of your teen. For example, gently but clearly make sure your teen understands how pregnancy occurs, how sexually transmitted diseases spread and how to take preventive steps. Make sure your teen knows when and where the date will take place and how the couple will get to and from the location? Would your teen like to hug or kiss at the end of the date? Discuss that this may include politely asking for a hug or kiss, if it’s not clear that the date is interested. For example, holding hands or walking arm in arm is less intimate than kissing.
If sexual activity has already occurred, we recommend consulting with your teen’s doctor about related health issues. If your teen is open to role-playing, try running through some classic dating scenarios. Encourage your teen to role play how to say this politely. Kissing is less intimate than certain other types of touching, etc.
For example, should your teen tell the person he or she wants to date about being on the autism spectrum? Highlight that each person becomes interested in these experiences at different ages, and that’s okay. Don’t delay discussions if you think your teen might be sexually active or is dealing with opportunities for sexual activity. Make sure you have contact information so you can confirm before the date. Maybe the person is dating someone else, too busy with schoolwork, or maybe just not interested in a relationship with you.
Should your teen date someone else on the autism spectrum? You want your teen to feel comfortable sharing information about dating. For example, remind your teen that most everyone finds dating challenging. In this situation, it’s crucial to discuss safe sex even if your teen feels resistant to talking about it. At the same time, make clear that it’s impossible to know for certain why someone does not want to go out on a date. Discuss the practical and specific steps involved in going on a date.
I'm going to go up to some person i don't know, ask them out, and go on some highly formalized social encounter, where they are scrutinizing everything about you to decide if they want to keep doing it together.
Dating, as you can see, can be stressful for autistic adults. Date people you get to know through common interests.
If he or she was asked out, make sure he or she has enough money to offer to pay at least his or her share.Guest post by psychologist Lindsey Sterling, Ph D, and doctoral student Siena Whitham - autism researchers and therapists with UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior.During a now-completed We’re so glad to address this question, given how many teens and parents express interest.Or, you may want to consider finding a pen pal, and getting to know each other through good old fashioned letter writing!I've always had it easier communicating in writing, where i can take my time, form my thoughts, and freeflow edit as i see fit.