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How would an autistic lad meet someone?

(15 Posts)
BiPolarBearz Sat 15-Feb-14 20:01:40

My step son is a handsome, loveable, funny and kind 16 year old who happens to have autism. He has become pre-occupied with the idea of dating, romance and marriage and now that he's found out his father is to re-marry it has risen the issue that he doesn't believe he ever will.

He's currently upset about the lack of valentines cards/messages/gifts he received (0) and is convinced everyone hates him.

How do autistic people meet potential partners? He would make someone very happy if given the chance and I so want to see it happen for him sad

KingRollo Sat 15-Feb-14 20:06:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

msrisotto Sat 15-Feb-14 20:11:14

There's a dating agency specially for people with learning disabilities. Think it's called stars in the sky.

GinSoakedMisery Sat 15-Feb-14 20:12:41

Our local NAS does a monthly meet up for young adults with ASD. Might be worth contacting your local one to find out if there is anything similar?

MisForMumNotMaid Sat 15-Feb-14 20:25:11

We have a 10 year old Autistic son. We've moved area to be in an area where there are lots of youth clubs, a big sensory play barn centre where they run autism and aspergers groups and a youth centre where there are both access youth groups as well as age based youth groups.

DS is for the first time socialising outside school. The groups are attended by both Autistic children and their sibblings so a good mix of children and ages, up to 25.

Do you know if there are any similar tolerant of differences youth groups in your area? Families information service for your area may be able to recomend some. Also the local National Autism Society (NAS) branch may have meet ups that offer days out and socials.

Out of interest how many valentines did your DSS send?

DS1 attends an autism unit with just 7 including him in his class. We discussed valentines and he took a little pack of sweets in for each child. We discussed that he was unlikely to get any back this year but maybe next year others will reciprocate. He's going to take everyone eggs at easter. At Christmas the children all exchanged gifts - it was lovely they all put so much thought into them. I know that two of the other mums cried just like I did at the pleasure they got from reciprocation possibly for the first time. My son stims when he's excited and he was so excited when explaining why he'd chosen his gifts to each child that the teacher thought he'd take off.

We talk a lot about initiating contact with other and how if you smile, be polite and great people they are more likely to do the same in return. We also discuss people having bad days and so sometimes they don't give us the response we'd like but you just give them space and smile at the next person. My point is someone has to make the first move. If everyone feels everyone doesn't like them, lots of people will be sitting in their own homes being sad. When really its not that people don't like each other its that each is not making a move.

DS1 did decide he was going to marry a girl that his granny said was pretty (this was a couple of years ago). He informed her he would marry her. She wasn't that impressed, DS couldn't understand why. I don't think he's really come on in that area.

Its so tough.

BiPolarBearz Sat 15-Feb-14 20:30:33

He didn't send any. He's very shy.

It is hard, his father told him tonight that we became engaged yesterday, he seemed fine with it and then when his dad went out he said to me "yeah I'm happy - I mean, for a minute there I thought you were getting married but now I realise it's engagement so happy engagement!" errr .... confused It's soooo difficult.

Lweji Sat 15-Feb-14 20:49:09

Not much help here, but he's right, of course. Have you got a date yet?

MisForMumNotMaid Sun 16-Feb-14 07:54:36

I've learnt, through the toughening up process of parenting, that ASD DS1's comments need careful literal translation.

A wedding if taken literally could be a very stressful event for an Autistic child, depending on his exposure/ and interpretation of weddings.

Think shy lad being thrust into midst of lots of kissing relatives, having expectations put on him for behaviour, formal meal, not knowing everyone, speeches and keeping quiet, noisy disco with even more drunk adults.

I'm not suggesting that is your wedding plan but it could be interpreted that's what a wedding is from films/ soaps. Usually with some extra drama thrown in.

Theres usually good reason to spiky comments, because with ASD theres rarely malice.

Ohwhatfuckeryisthis Sun 16-Feb-14 08:10:47

My son is 25 and has Aspergers. Girlfriends have never been a problem <hollow laugh> in that way. He had a long term gf in school when he was 17. Then one in college, then he discovered the internet and online gaming forums and forums for young asd people. The latest one came to visit from the US (surprise!) He does fall hard, mainly with love itself. (He is on another relationship now) youth clubs, church groups and such played their part too. ( we didn't have NAS near us) He will find a girl, not easy to explain that she won't appear overnight I know)

jesy Sun 16-Feb-14 08:50:03

Local to me there is a group for autism that meets on a regular basis , it's in a busy local pub so I'm assuming that there be a chance to meet people who are not autistic as well as those who are.
I really hope he finds some one nice , but that dating agency sounds great I saw it on telly a few years back it had .e in tears the effort they went to help.

FrostedButts Sun 16-Feb-14 09:16:31

autistic people tend to go well together, I have asperger & my partner does not have a diagnosis but shares similarities.

facilitated groups might be a start, there are quite a few in my area run by an autism charity who also have a day centre with classes, trips, film nights etc.

groups for hobbies & interests might also help, does he have a favourite game or sport? online games often have meet ups where having 'met' online can help with the anxiety. maybe not yet but in a few years smile I met a previous partner online, I know someone who met her husband on second life & lots more couples from warcraft.

I didn't get a single valentines card till I was 20! & now in happy relationship of 4 years, 16 is very young particularly for someone with ASD, I think we do things a bit more slowly. there is no reason why it shouldn't happen for him especially if he is as lovely as you describe. there's a man of 60 in a group I go to who has recently celebrated 30th wedding anniversary.

handfulofcottonbuds Sun 16-Feb-14 11:02:41

I don't have any experience of Autism but from a Mum's point of view, 16 is still quite young to be looking at having a relationship/GF. My DS was seeing someone when he was 16 and when it ended, it broke his heart and took him a long time to get over it.

Does your DSS have a good network of friends and go out with them or does his shy nature prevent this? I think it would be more important in building up his social life rather than focussing on him getting a GF. Like I said, I have no experience of Autism so I may be missing something here, but I do have experience of bringing up a DS who has spent time crying over a girl.

Congratulations on your engagement by the way!

CoteDAzur Sun 16-Feb-14 11:03:38

Online. Where lack of "people skills" isn't as much a barrier as in RL.

JuliaScurr Sun 16-Feb-14 11:08:14

my friend had a ltr with someone he met at their day centre
it now charges fees due to the cuts so they can't afford to go any more

Finney2 Sun 16-Feb-14 11:55:08

My brother is autistic and met his long-term girlfriend online in a teen chat forum. We would never have believed he could sustain a relationship (can be selfish, struggles with physical intimacy etc) but he has and it has enriched his life in so many ways.

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