Human beings are fundamentally social creatures and most want to connect with other people. Spending time with other people is something that many find rewarding and positive. It's a myth that autistic people don't want to have friends and are 'loners'. This simply isn’t the case for most, but some people do become socially isolated for many reasons.
Because of communication differences, some autistic people may find it difficult to understand how and why people interact in the way that they do. Social communication is a very complicated area for people who see the world differently and who struggle to relate to people around them. They may have tried and failed to create or maintain friendships; many describe feeling like they were always ‘getting it wrong’ but not understanding why.
Many autistic people are bullied for their differences which can cause low self-esteem and result in a fear of social situations; social anxiety is the most common form of anxiety for autistic people.
Finding your tribe
People diagnosed later in life often describe a sense of relief at having ‘found their tribe’. Finally, they have found a community they feel they belong to – this is something they may never have experienced before. With support, autistic people can have a positive experience from being part of a social group - interests are a good way of finding your tribe.
Read more about autism and friendships by clicking on the links below.