Contrary to popular belief put out by academics who study women with AS like an entomologist studies squiggly bugs, there are plenty of female Aspies who want very much to be part of a relationship. When it comes to love, we aren't so different from other females. We want to be respected, admired for our sparkling wit, taken seriously when we pontificate, admired for our inner and outer beauty, and loved. Not too tall an order when it comes to happily ever after. I have found a relationship that covers all those important bases and for that I am indeed very lucky. I have also found relationships that smeared ugliness and abuse over every part of me and in that I am not alone. The number of women with AS who have been at the very least taken advantage of, and at the unthinkable worst physically and emotionally scared, is staggering. The truth is it is darn hard to discern who in our lives are being truthful and who are taking advantage of our inability to read non-verbal cues and ugly intentions. Because we female Aspies aren't super savvy when it comes to picking would-be mates, I've listed a few red flag warning signs to look out for when looking for a partner. Behavior outlined below, is unquestionably behavior to run from.
Stalking. Never a good idea. You have the right and responsibility to decide when and if you will entertain anyone for any reason. If a partner comes to your house when you have asked him or her not to, if you discover your partner is following you around on errands or when you are enjoying private time, or if you sense your partner is showing up wherever you are, do not take these behaviors as happy coincidences. They are signs of stalking and demand intervention by the police. Report these behaviors immediately and take extra precaution when you are alone.
Jealousy. Dangerous people become irrational when they think anyone at all is drawing the attention of their partner. If you can't figure out if your partner is overly jealous, it would be ideal to ask a trusted neurotypical friend to go out on a double date with you and your partner to observe how the partner acts when others interact with you. If a double date isn't an option, observe on your own how your partner acts. If he or she responds unfavorably to simple attention you attract from salespeople, food servers and neighbors take this as a sign jealousy is rearing its ugly head too high and get out of the relationship with your partner.
Isolation. Abusive people understand the best way to abuse you is to keep others away from you. If you are involved with someone who does their best to keep you away from your family, friends, co-workers and neighbors, consider the possibility that your partner could be a dangerous person. Do a test and go away for the weekend with a family member and see how your partner reacts. If the reaction is nasty in any way, dump the partner fast.
Animal Abusers. Science has shown that people who abuse animals are far more likely to abuse humans. Disliking cats or preferring not to have a dog in the home does not count as animal abusers. Hitting, shooting, poisoning, running over animals and any other harmful behavior toward an innocent animal is a sign of an abusive person. Avoid these people at all costs and consider making an anonymous call to the police to make a formal complaint against them.
Controlling. You are in charge of your own destiny and your day-to-day decisions. Should anyone decide it is their job to control your time, career choices, clothing or any other part of who you are, take stock of the relationship and consider the fact you might have an abuser in your life.
Yes, real love and companionship can happen for an Aspie, but take caution. Your personal safety must come first.