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SS20 wants no part of human connection

justmakingthebest's picture

My heart kind of broke for my SS20 last night. We are in the process of doing an adult guardianship of him and his therapist recommended that we do this crazy assessment for court to keep it moving quickly and with no hiccups.

He has Autism and previously diagnosed as bi-polar (that was under question though). Anyway, one of the questions on the assessment was : Do you understand why people want "intimate" relationships?

He answered no.

I know that he has no interest in girls/women and he hasn't shown any interest in guys... but it made me a little sad that he doesn't want any connections. There were other questions that talked about this and human connections and he showed no interest in friendships, relationships, physical contact... none of it.

I know how he is but I was just surprised to see him respond with no interest in the past, current or future.

I always knew that he would likely live with us forever but I guess there was hope that one day he would find "The Amy to his Sheldon"... I felt like that hope was squashed last night.


tog redux's picture

But remember - it doesn't bother him. He's fine not having those connections.  He may still live on his own, or in supportive housing some day.

justmakingthebest's picture

That is true. I need to stop putting my personal needs as something that I feel he should need or want. 

tog redux's picture

Yes, don't project your own feelings onto him. It's odd for "normies" because we do want those connections, but he doesn't need them. 

simifan's picture

Don't forget Sheldon wanted nothing to do with Amy for the longest time, he's still young and his brain is still developing. Things may change. 

Evil3's picture

I don't know very much about Autism at all, but does it have to do with life skills? I mean just because your SS isn't interested in human connection doesn't mean he can't live on his own. Or does the level of Autism affect a person's ability to learn lifeskills?

justmakingthebest's picture

It  depends on the person and where they fall on the spectrum. 

For my SS he is kind of stunted around a 13 yr old. He has sensory issues and water bothers him so things like showering and brushing his teeth are a daily struggle.

Also eating, preparing food, remembering time lines- those are all a big challenge for him. He is terrified of the stove and oven. It was actually hysterically funny trying to teach him to cook spaghetti. You would have thought I told him he had to stick his hand in the boiling water to retrieve the pasta! 

He gets fantasy and reality confused. Things he reads online become very real and he can get worked up. 

He is a good kid for the most part and sometimes I struggle looking at a 6ft tall 20 yr old man and reminding myself that he is an immature 13 - Not 20. He has to be reminded to do basics. 

There were parts to the assessments that were concerning and things we didn't even think about- how easily someone could take advantage of him. He doesn't remember to lock doors at night or see who is at the door before opening. He doesn't have a brain to mouth filter so you never know what will come out and sometimes it is about aliens and starwars to a poor random stranger. Then there are other times where just getting him to come outside is a dramatic episode. 

Gimlet's picture

I think we all expect certain milestones for our kids, don't we?  And especially milestones that have brought us happiness.  I think that's natural.  I hope that my DD finds a great partner someday.

I don't know that my stepkids will meet some of those milestones either, for different reasons.

I really just want to commend you for the incredible amount of empathy and patience you have with SS20.  I can imagine that it can be really hard to see your child, or a child you love, not do something that has brought you joy and that most other kids will do.  I also think it takes a lot of strength to look at this young man and accept that even though you aren't his mother, you are going to take care of him in some way for the rest of your life.  I don't know if I could do it. 

You're a good person, JMTB, and I hope your husband knows what a treasure he has in you.

ITB2012's picture

But if he's at 13 socially, he may also be behind in the human connection. He may find someone he's comfortable with and willing to have consistently in his life.

Like stated above Sheldon didn't want Amy at first and even after they married he said he would schedule (for himself and not tell Amy) times to initiate intimacy because he knows she wants it but it's just not on his radar unless he makes an effort.

And maybe your SS would do great in a group home of autistic guys who can hang out with each other but there's no other relationship pressure and there's some sort of mentor/monitor that checks on them.

justmakingthebest's picture

I would say he is at 13 cognitively- not socially. I wouldn't even know how to rate him socially.

It is really hard for him to even play a card game. Sometimes we make him play if we need a player and he will throw his cards down before the game is over and say that we talk too much and he can't deal with us. 

His dad usually makes him finish the round but it does get too hard for him.

He will avoid restaurant and ask us to bring something home. He can go days without talking to anyone.

He has no friends. He only talks to family if we make him. 

It is sad for me, I want him to have a full life. DH is more pragmatic I guess and just says it's just SS, he is who he is. We have talked about group homes in the future, and maybe once he is closer to 30 and we are ready to start down sizing our life with the rest of the kids graduated from college it would be something we could consider but not in the foreseeable future. 

DPW's picture

Don't project yourself onto him. He's content without human contact, it's okay and common with autism. Your DH is correct - that is who he is. I wish the best for him!

GoingWicked's picture

A family friend of ours, I highly suspect is on the spectrum, he's very, very intelligent so I think it masked it.  Plus, I don't think there was the push to identify it like there is now.  He didn't have a girlfriend until his late 30s, they met and married within a year and she is just as odd and bright as he is. Both are huge gamers, I suspect this is how they bonded.  Maybe he will find a partner, but go about it in a different angle, he may find someone based on how that person benefits him, rather than the emotional connection that most people desire.