Neurodiverse Couples Work at Space Between Counseling Services

Neurodiverse coupleships are comprised of one neurotypical partner and one partner with an with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Perhaps you or your partner have been formally diagnosed by a medical professional with ASD. However, this is not necessarily the case for all people with ASD. In fact, as many as 1 in 6 people may diagnostically qualify for ASD. According to The Autism Aspergers Network, “A partner might be the first person to identify Asperger traits in an individual who has been successful in other areas of life. Intimate relationships can be hard for anyone, but they are especially challenging when partners have different perspectives, communication techniques, approaches, and skill sets.” There is no denying that these differences can be challenging. However, through developing a mutual understanding and respect for said differences, couples are able to fortify their relationships.

Like any couple, neurodiverse couples are often attracted to one another for various reasons. Many partners in neurodiverse relationships enjoy the complimentary nature of their partnership. Perhaps the neurotypical partner is intrigued and attracted to the systematic nature and intelligence of their partner with ASD. At the same time, the partner with ASD may relish his or her partner’s charisma and ability to navigate social settings.

Frequently Ask Questions About Neurodiverse Couples Work:

Neurodiverse couples work is similar to any couples therapy, as it involves a therapist and two identified clients who are in some sort of relationship with one another. A neurodiverse coupleship is comprised of one neurotypical partner and one partner who is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Neurodiverse couples work focuses on the unique challenges that neurodiverse couples face, as they seek to gain better understanding of their relationship, preferences and one another.

What is Neurodiverse Couples Work?

 

Like any couples therapy, the goal of neurodiverse couples work may vary based on the desires of the individuals and couples.

If your goal is to grow together, couples work may assist you in finding meaning and connection in the little things you share and help you find ways to thrive in a state of connected coupleship long after therapy concludes.

Other couples discover their goals may be to move apart and grow individually. In this case, couples work may assist you in making transitions, adapting to your new form of a relationship, and provide you with psychoeducation surrounding grief and change.

What is the goal of neurodiverse couples work?

 

At Space Between Counseling Services, our couples clinicians are committed to providing neurodiverse couples with empathy and a unique understanding of the distinctive challenges faced by neurotypical-neurodiverse pairs.

While our clinicians may utilize different treatment modalities, such as the Psychobiological Approach to Couple Therapy (PACT), the Gottman Method and Terry Real’s Relational Life Therapy (RLT), all SBCS clinicians are trained to understand the internal experiences of both the neurotypical client and the client with an autism spectrum disorder.

What is Neurodiverse Couples therapy like at Space Between Counseling Services?

 

According to Janice Roden, “Common symptoms of ASD in adults include:

  • Trouble interpreting what others are thinking and/or feeling

  • Difficulty interpreting non-verbal communications such as facial expressions, body language, or social cues

  • Trouble self-regulating emotion

  • Difficulty in maintaining a conversation

  • Trouble reflecting emotions through vocal inflection

  • A tendency to engage in monologues on a favorite subject rather than participate in mutual conversations

  • A pattern of engaging in repetitive behaviors

  • Selectively engaging in only a restricted range of activities

  • Strict adherence to routines and seemingly grandiose outbursts in the presence of change to said routines

  • Extensive, deep, or seemingly obsessive interest and knowledge about a particular subject.

Adults can also exhibit repetitive behaviors and have specific, extreme interest in a particular topic like a sports teams or area of history. These interests may border on “obsessions.”

What Does Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Look like in Adults?