Home Forums Frequently Asked Questions An Autistic Friend Re: An Autistic Friend

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Autistic children (and adults) can and do show affection, especially with people that they feel comfortable with (usually a few very familiar family members).
In fact, some children actually “over show” affection because they are not aware of proper social behavior. They may hug strangers without permission, pick up and carry around younger children, etc. They are simply trying to show their excitement and interest in other people but tend to go about it the wrong way. Other autistic individuals who do attempt to attain social acceptance may be unable to understand the rules of the majority and hence find themselves despised and rejected.
Many lower-functioning or nonverbal autistic individuals may not have the ability to understand certain social principles, and thus cannot think in terms of how someone else feels.
Other autistic individuals are very selfish and self-centered with regard to other people. Those individuals aren’t necessarily trying to annoy or reject everyone they meet. They just lack a basic awareness of other people.
Autistic children who do not have the ability to understand that they are bothering someone do not understand why they have to stop and hence will continue to bother them.
Why don’t you and your friends teach her new behaviour skills.It is important to tell her the truth; how you feel about her inappropriate touching you or others, and even teach her about feeling and who to share with. Drawing a circle with her in the middle, then family members, peers, etc., write her ex. who to touch, who to kiss, who to hug, etc.Teach her to excuse you when you have something else to do.
Put yourself in her shoes for a moment. Would you want everyone to run from you and not knowing why?
In the end, you might be the greatest friend she ever had.