CIP Bloomington Students Weigh in on Dating with Autism and LD

The journey through the post-secondary world for young adults can be full of excitement, anxiety, and seemingly endless options. These emotions and decisions are not limited to our experiences in college, the employment field, or even through our independent living. As a young adult, we begin to explore a whole new set of emotions and feelings that come with establishing relationships. We asked the students at CIP Bloomington their opinions and experiences around the topic of relationships.


What is Important?

Some of the most common themes from students about positive relationships were the importance of trust, honesty, communication and happiness. Joe said, “an ideal relationship for me would be having a lot of the same interests as the other person and being trustful towards one another.” This sentiment was echoed by other students as well.


Bennett felt that “relationships, romantic or otherwise, are very important to us as humans because of how our brains are wired. Humans crave social interaction in any form.” Robert said that being in a relationship was about feeling loved, being cared about and is built on a level of trust. He felt that relationships are important because they help develop trust, friendship, compassion and bonding.


Drawbacks to Relationships

While relationships offer many benefits to students, they also felt that there were drawbacks to being involved with someone. Bennett said, “most relationships in my experience and observations lack real trust. A couple can always tell each other the truth, but that doesn’t matter if they don’t trust those truths.” Cody felt another issue with relationships revolved around being put in positions that make you feel anxious or helpless. He said relationships sometimes allow “people to get too close to you and that puts you in a vulnerable place.” By in large, students felt the positives outweighed the negatives though. The need to stay connected, being cared about and a greater sense of belonging were all ideals that students said were important within their lives.


The students at CIP Bloomington understand that relationships, like school work and careers, are something that we must continue to work on collaboratively to help them grow and improve. As Bennett succinctly said, “the best thing about being in a relationship is a feeling of belonging.” That belonging is something that we all want and need in our lives, whether through romantic relationships or friendships with roommates, classmates or fellow employees. We are very fortunate to see a sense of belongingness everyday within our students and staff at CIP Bloomington.

Is your teen or young adult on the autism spectrum ready to date? Read our latest blog post that highlights certain social skills that can lay the foundation for healthy relationships for teens and young adults with ASD and social communication disorders.

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About College Internship Program

The College Internship Program is a comprehensive transition program for young adults on the Autism Spectrum and with Learning Differences. Our Mission is to inspire independence and expand the foundation on which young adults with Autism, ADHD, and other Learning Differences can build happy and productive lives.