Relationships / Friends

Friendships and relationships can be challenging for many people. When you add an Asperger Profile to the equation, they can become more difficult. While some individuals are content without friendships or relationships, many people seek them out and crave that human connection. With knowledge and support, you can identify and overcome barriers to finding friends and relationships.

We recognize what you have to offer as a friend and partner. AANE is here with the support and resources you need to build skills and make connections.

Essential Resources:

Calendar of Events for Adults
Support Groups for Adults
Social Activities and Events for Adults
For Couples and Partners
LGBTQIA+

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Marriage with Asperger’s Syndrome: 14 Practical Strategies

Article
By Eva Mendes, M.A., Psychotherapist & Couple's Counselor The excerpts below focus on interventions for relationships in which an individual with Asperger Syndrome (AS) is partnered with a spouse or partner who does not have AS (a neurotypical). The article in its entirety may be found at... more

Asperger/Autism Spectrum Fact Sheet

Article
About Asperger/Autism Spectrum: It is neurological and affects the way information is processed in the brain. It is often an invisible difference. Many people appear very competent, but have difficulties in areas of communication and social interaction. It has a genetic and hereditary... more

Mutually Assured Distraction

10/05/2021
  Gus and Leah are a married couple on the autism spectrum and members of the AANE Speaker's Bureau. Read their full bio here. ***** We are an adult couple, both of us on the autism spectrum, married for almost exactly five years. Gus is more of a classic STEM geek, working as a computer... more

Dating and Relationships

Video
The arena of dating and finding someone special continues to be an issue for many people on the autism spectrum. Executive Director Dania Jekel discusses this topic and offers advice to those with Asperger/autism profiles who are considering whether or not a relationship is right for them. To... more

Neurodiverse Relationships

Video
While any relationship can have its challenges, couples in a neurodiverse relationship (where one or both partners are on the autism spectrum) can face a unique set of issues. Dania Jekel, Executive Director of AANE, explores this difference and announces AANE's new training for therapists to... more

Communication Challenges in Neurodiverse Partnerships

Video
Do you feel like your partner is "speaking a different language"? Does this communication impact important conversations you want to have with your partner? While communication is vital for all relationships, unique challenges can arise when there is neurodiversity between partners. Whether... more

First Person Account: Dating Challenges with an Asperger Profile

Video
As an individual with an Asperger profile, AANE community member Sam Farmer reflects on some of the communication challenges he faced while he was dating and how he how he learned to become more... more

Undue Influence: Cults and Predators – Webinar

Webinar
In this webinar, Steven will teach you about the basics of undue influence, and why individuals on the autism spectrum are uniquely susceptible to it. He will explain the difference between healthy and unhealthy influence. Undue influence is not just an issue for religious cults; it is used by... more

The Autism Spectrum, Sexuality and the Law: What every parent and professional needs to know

Recommended Reading
The Autism Spectrum, Sexuality and the Law: What every parent and professional needs to know Jul 21, 2014 by Nick Dubin and Isabelle Henault   A good resource for families and professionals interested in legal and criminal issues in regards to AS and... more

Viewing Marriage and Relationships Through the Asperger Lens (in Spanish)

Webinar
Learn how to view marriage and relationships through an Asperger/Autism Lens. Includes helpful tips for partners and spouses. This version is in... more

Romantic Relationships with Asperger’s and Autism: Successful Strategies for Couples and Spouses

Webinar
Strategies from Eva Mendes, author of Romantic Relationships with Asperger's and... more

Viewing Marriage and Long-Term Relationships Through an Asperger’s Lens

Webinar
Learn how to view marriage and relationships through an Asperger/Autism Lens. Includes helpful tips for partners and... more

Marriage and Lasting Relationships with Asperger’s Syndrome (Autism Spectrum Disorder)

Recommended Reading
In “Marriage and Lasting Relationships with Asperger Syndrome,” Eva Mendes presents proven strategies to help neurodiverse couples in tricky relationships.  What makes this book so helpful — what makes it stand apart — is her ability to elucidate the realities of both partners in a... more

The Hidden Curriculum: Practical Solutions for Understanding Unstated Rules in Social Situations

Recommended Reading
A few years ago, I was speaking with a friend who is on the spectrum when he noted that life would be much easier if someone would just show me the rules. With the publication of The Hidden Curriculum, Myles, Trautman, and Schelvan have done just that. Utilizing concrete examples of hidden... more

Living Well on the Spectrum: How to Use Your Strengths to Meet the Challenges of…

Recommended Reading
Navigating the "neurotypical" world with an Asperger/Autism profile can be extremely stressful. But by understanding the specific ways your brain works differently--and how to tap into your personal strengths--you can greatly enhance your well-being. In this wise and practical book, experienced... more