Friendship and Autism- The struggles of having friendship as an Autistic person.

As an Autistic person, I have always found it hard to make friends. I also have social anxiety so that makes it even more difficult to interact. I only have one friend and I have a lot of anxiety about our friendship “What if she doesn’t like me anymore?” or “What if she didn’t like what I talked about?”

I would love to have more friends, but having sensory issues from SPD can make it hard to talk in places with a lot of people. If somebody really would want to get to know me, he or she would need to be able to talk to me in a quiet, uncrowded place. I also need them to be accpeting of me. If he or she judges me for things like stimming, tics, and sensory issues then he or she can’t be my friend.

In friendship, I need time to get comfortable with a person. I had to get comfortable with my friend before I started opening up to her. I still feel a little uncomfortable talking to her sometimes. I need someone who can try to understand why I wince when a dog barks, or why I only eat certain foods. I also need someone who needs to understand that I don’t express excitement a lot and that I need permission before being hugged. I also need someone who will understand that meltdowns are NOT on purpose and that they are NOT tantrums, and that shutdowns are NOT on purpose either.

I hope someday that I will be able to make more NT (Neurotypical) friends, I also want to make some Autistic friends if some Autistic people pop up in my life. I have been around Autistic people before and I feel comfortable around them because most of them have similar (and sometimes the same) issues that I have.

To finish this post up, I DO WANT to be included with things. I think people assume that because I’m quiet that I don’t want to join in. I long to join in conversations- It’s just that conversations can be difficult to start and keep up with. I do occasionally need social breaks, but I’m happy to try to join in. 🙂

This is why friendship is hard for me as an Autistic person.

 

photo credit: Ralph van Katwijk <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/40111314@N02/29643895541″>Friendship</a&gt; via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)

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One thought on “Friendship and Autism- The struggles of having friendship as an Autistic person.

  1. friendship in your situation is like platform 9 3/4. the best way to get through is to just run into the wall as fast as you can.

    thats what i did, anyway. the more i screwed up, the more i tried. eventually it just gave way. ive run straight into the wall hundreds of times, to the point where i (nearly) got used to it. it still causes pain and stress when it goes south, and can ruin a day (or a week.) but im partially desensitized to that kind of failure now, so the anxiety it induces is less.

    im at a point now where if i had to, i would probably just keep trying. not with the same people, no. some i give up on. this will sound callous but caring about only 2 or 3 people puts a giant burden on those friendships– if you can start out with 20 people that dont care about you and vice versa, maybe 4 or 5 (instead of 2 or 3) will end up real friends– you win more often BY LOSING more often. its totally backwards, isnt it?

    but its like the people who make more money are the ones that spent more. and the ones that have more to spend got there by taking more risks. and with risks comes the fear of failure– you beat all that by sacrificing yourself. well, it works in both theory and practice, for me. kids: dont try this at home? (ymmv.) its hard though– very hard. its not easy– its the other thing!

    Like

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