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Some ways to identify if an adult is on the spectrum

In general Autistic people are usually very intellectual and like to think and research logically. We also tend to have strong verbal skills and can speak for hours on our areas of special interests.

ASD people often have a unique relationship with clothes You may find that autistic individuals will like to wear the same clothes or same type of clothes every single day. In general we dress very casual or overly formal, but regardless we tend to have a unique relationship with clothes. For example, Einstein (who is widely considered to be on the spectrum) was known for wearing black pants and a white coat daily.

People on the autism spectrum often have a “special interest” which is very strong and specific field of interest that will dominate their life. In boys this is often trains or dinosaurs, but can be almost anything that is collectible and is associated with specific data and facts. In adults this is frequently history, music and science/medicine.

Autistic people often have difficulty making and maintaining eye contact in social situations. This can be extremely noticeable or almost undetectable. In adults this often presents is “breaking eye contact” versus not looking someone in the eyes.

Most if not all Autistic people love routine and build safe and secure routines for everything in their daily life. This ranges from “rituals” including brushing their teeth to exiting their home to simple rote activities like playing a video game over and over or obsessively cleaning the house.

Unique eating habits are also very common with Autism/Asperger’s. Sensory processing disorder come hand in hand with autism, and can create interesting and picky eating habits. However the polar opposite is also true. In general people on the spectrum either have a very limited interest in foods or conversely love all types of cuisine. In short we have extreme views when it comes to diet and there is rarely little middle ground.

We tend to be socially awkward. Autism includes communication issues, and socializing can be extremely difficult for people with Asperger’s in adulthood. Again, this ranges from selective mutism to overly gregarious behavior. The latter of which Dr. Tony Atwood (a global expert on Asperger’s) calls the “Italian Driver” due to the excitement and overly exaggerated body language and gestures.

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