There is a common misconception that people on the Autism Spectrum are somehow lacking when it comes to living life to the fullest.
A few root causes of such misconceptions may be the over-emphasis on only some of the social, communication, and behavioral differences that Autistic People Exhibit.
Here is a related article that might intrest you on 6 Famous Footballers, Soccer, and Basketball Players with Autism.
Can autistic people marry? Autism inherently cannot cause someone to become inadequate for marriage. An understanding partner, persistent treatment, and behavioral therapy can help you lead a happy marital life.
Can Autistic People Marry? Challenges
It is not uncommon for affected people to worry about their life ahead, including their interpersonal relationships, employment prospects, and independence. However, most of this worry comes from isolated statistics that are merely designed to compile knowledge available on Autism Spectrum Disorder.
But these should not be overly used when assessing your life opportunities.
It is very common for autistic people to get married, have a good job, and live independent lives. Because the disorder is often associated with a lack of social awareness, disinterest in interactions, and aggressive or rude behavior, some people may be avoidant to Autistic people.
Such people should not change your perception about the potential of your life. Keep reading to learn more about why Autistic People can get married just like anyone else and lead happy lives. The article will also shed some light on common hurdles that Autism can create in your life and how they can be solved.
Low- Versus. High-Functioning Autism
Previous scientific studies often divided Autism based on two main classifications. These helped create awareness about how the disorder can impact different affected individuals with varying intensity.
High-functioning Autism is on the milder side of ASD and comes with high levels of independence, intelligence, and other skills. People on the High-functioning spectrum often have good-paying jobs and can maintain healthy interpersonal relationships.
Most cases of Autism are on the High-functioning side. In comparison, Low-Functioning Autism comes with greater challenges (which can further vary in intensity), such as needing assistance with personal hygiene, eating, and household chores.
While Both types are not disabling, Low-Functioning Autism can make love life and finding a partner difficult.
The Double Empathy Problem
Double Empathy has become a topic of great interest within the autism community. It helps explain the great divide, miscommunication, and avoidance that is often present between autistic and non-autistic people.
According to the Double Empathy Problem, emotional expression and understanding of others’ emotional needs is a two-way process.
When one party fails to show Empathy, it can lead to a dislike from the other person, even when they are normally empathetic people. This is often present in Autistic and non-autistic interactions.
People with ASD often have a hard time decoding facial expressions and extracting subtle meaning from a conversation. A frown, a gesture of disapproval, or agitation may go undetected by them, leading to frustration in the non-autistic person on the other side. This can often lead to problems in forming and maintaining relationships.
However, there are many non-autistic people who are married to autistic people. They have happy marriages and understand that any lack of Empathy usually comes from their disorder and not a lack of care for the other person.
Autistic people also use behavioral and social therapies to become more understanding and soothing partners.
Emotional and Intellectual Intelligence
Similar to the double empathy problem, the emotional intelligence of autistic people is also questioned. However, this has much to do with outside perception rather than an affected person’s actual abilities.
Various studies have found autistic people to be great at understanding emotions, providing affection, and engaging in mutually beneficial interactions.
Studies investigating the behavior of autistic children have found a strong and affectionate bond between children and their parents. While their ways of communicating may be different, such as showing less enthusiasm or verbal communication, they still attempt to engage with parents during their playtime.
While similar studies observing the behavior of Autistic people are limited, some have found consistent, positive results. Autistic people usually exhibit signs of low facial expression recognition and an inability to express their emotions.
An inherent lack of care for other people’s emotional and physical needs is not common. Research involving surveying family members of Autistic people found that they are highly emotionally intelligent and feel excitement, happiness, and grief when an appropriate situation arises.
There is a common misconception surrounding Autism that they are not as intelligent, skilled, and competent as others. However, this belief is usually caused by Autistic people’s performance on IQ tests.
There is ample evidence that they do not perform very well on IQ tests. However, such tests have long been criticized for their inability to accurately judge one’s intellect due to the limited variety of tests involved.
A 2016 study found that IQ tests often provide findings opposite to intelligence findings of more appropriate knowledge tests. It also found that Autistic children usually have an imbalance of intelligence, and their exceptional performance in some components gets offset by lower performance in others.
Quality of Life
There is no doubt that material well-being, personal achievements, and standard of living can play an important role in an individual’s prospects of finding a compatible partner.
Most autistic adults are unemployed or underemployed, with only 60 percent currently employed in regularly paying jobs. This can be detrimental to forming and maintaining a happy marital life.
Autistic people usually have to compete with other non-autistic people for jobs that can have communication, management, and emotional skills as a top priority.
No academic articles currently exist that observe the quality of interpersonal relationships of Autistic people. However, individuals sharing their fulfilling marriage experiences within various Autism communities are enough evidence to believe that they can have happy and healthy marriages.
One person married to some with ASD shared: “I do think that it’s perfectly possible for an autistic human to have a great romantic relationship, but there are a few particular things about me that I think have helped me deal with his various difficulties more effectively.” However, not everyone holds the same views.
Other marriage experiences between autistic and non-autistic people shared within the autism community have been less than positive. Complaints of distress, lack of communication, lack of Empathy, and difference in lifestyles are very common.
While whether marriage proves successful or unsuccessful is a complicated debate, there is ample evidence that forming romantic relationships is not easily possible for autistic people.
Dating and romantic relationships are not a smooth experience for anyone. Every person goes through difficulties when it comes to forming a long-term relationship and finding a compatible partner they can spend their lives with.
Also, make sure to check out my post on What Is The Difference Between Acceptance And Awareness?
The case of Autistic People is nothing different; they may or may not be able to find a compatible partner and get married.
However, it’s important to remember that Autism inherently cannot cause someone to become inadequate for marriage. An understanding partner, persistent treatment, and behavioral therapy can help you lead a happy marital life.
Hi. This is me Hira Naz. I am becoming a clinical psychologist. I am done with my majors and doing some diplomas to pursue my career in counseling. Along with Psychology, I am pursuing my passion for writing. I have been a freelance writer for the past 5 years. Currently, I am writing for this site and providing all the necessary insights to help and advise the elderly and disabled.