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Aro (aroace) and Autism


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I've always felt sort of 'destined' to be aroace because I'm autistic, and I tried not to give into it but it's sort of been putting me down for a while now. Like yes, I'm autistic, but I can still have a decent grappling understanding of love. I really thought I could feel romantic love for a while, and in all my other relationships I acted decently interested romantically and sexually in the other person. 

However, I don't feel romantic love. And people sort of use my autism as an excuse to sort of 'justify' why I'm aroace and use my autism as a cause or correlation. Like I'm broken. 

I know this is all wrong, but I do need some help sort of telling people to piss off, and that autism is not linked or correlated with aroace and that it doesn't invalidate my sexuality. 

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  • 3 months later...

The correlation between asexuality (and aromanticism) and autism is not as strong as people think. Here's an article on it (I used to have a full copy of the article, but I cannot find right now)


The article explains that many autistic people identify as asexual not based on the original definition of the asexuality - a lack of sexual attraction - but based on a lack of desire to engage in sexual activity or lack of desire for interpersonal relations. Aromantic asexuality means that you have a non-split orientation, so the same logic would still apply. What YOU are describing is clearly a lack of attraction, which does not have as strong of a correlation with autism.

I am not autistic, and I am an aromantic asexual. On the other hand, I have an autistic brother who is heterosexual. Now, he still does not engage in sexual activity because he has no desire to engage in that type of intimacy. However, he is still clearly, plainly attracted to girls and not asexual; he simply does not have the desire to act upon his attraction in that way.

Edited by Ace_of_Spades
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  • 1 month later...

I'm not officially diagnosed but it's been heavily speculated by therapists that I'm autistic, and I just happen to be aromantic. I never once thought that my autism/neurodivergencey affected my romantic attraction, and to be honest I blamed any attraction I may have felt of that sort lessening solely on puberty XD

But I can see how others who don't understand the a-spec community, may use neurodivergencey as a way to say, "Oh that makes sense because you're [this or that or both]" when one is talking about their a-spec identity or potentially coming out to someone as a-spec, and it sucks. The thing is, I'm neurodivergent and aro but my brother, who is very much also neurodivergent, is not at all a-spec, has dated before, and expressed feeling both romantic and sexual attraction towards women. So, yeah.

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I found this thread today and I’m pretty late to the conversation maybe. 

im 40 this year and I discovered that I’m aroace a couple of years ago. It was such a huge relief and explained my whole life so I’ve got a pride in who I am that I didn’t have before. 😌 

Quite early I got to understand that there were prejudices and reactions could be that “this is not real orientations but caused by autism”. Which makes me sad, not because it’s something wrong with autism (of course) but because the way they say it “caused by this or that diagnosis” makes it sound like it’s something broken or wrong. It shows a sad attitude towards autistic people too I think - I began to think: Why are only the orientation of neurotypical people valid? 


And of course as many of you earlier in this conversation have said: there are many autistic people with other orientations and many aces and/or aros who are autistic and who are not autistic. 

This spring I’ve been diagnosed myself as having autism and add 😌 it’s been an overwhelming process too and validating and means I can understand myself better. But it makes me feel vulnerable too. I don’t plan being open about being autistic but these comments will make me even more uncomfortable and vulnerable I think. And if people would know - would they invalidate me? 


These are just thoughts spinning in my head right now so it felt good to share them. 

I hope for more awareness and validation of both autistic people and of ace and aro identities. That neither one of them will be invalidated and met with prejudices. That every ace & aro would be able to feel valid. That every autistic person would feel respected and that their orientation and their feelings matter same as everybody else. 💚

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