Here is my YouTube video to go along with this post. I have been having technical difficulties getting it to embed… It is cuffing season
So as you can see, I am changing the format slightly. I am no longer giving them numbers. Instead, I will be giving them subtitles. When I came up with idea for this post, I admit it was a little tongue in cheek. I mean no one is going to realistically structure their lifestyle around the weather, right…? But let’s talk seriously though. Suppose it actually has less to do with the weather and more to do with the fact that people who are normally happy go lucky singles start to feel the loneliness more during the holidays? After all, people are often with their families and if you are unattached, you might not have a family to spend the holidays with and that makes not having a significant other…well, even more significant.
Consider the fact that suicide rates go up during the holidays. Couple mental illness with all these darn cheerful, family-oriented holiday festivities and viola! – cuffing season.
People need and want to be loved, valued, cuddled…even if it is a facade. And consider this- Is all of this exacerbated by being on the Autism Spectrum? Many people on the spectrum have strained relationships with their families. Many people on the spectrum have a terrible time navigating the dating world. If someone who is equally lonely and or desperate comes along…meet your new cuffing buddy…
So what do y’all think? Change in weather, change in attitude towards commitment? I have done a little research for us and here is what I found. Huffington Post had this to offer: Cuffing Season
My whole premise in my little series has been: If you are going to be monogamous be faithful to your partner. Otherwise, be honest with your mate and let them know that you want to try something different. Have you ever heard of consensual non monogamy? Let’s face it folks, there are a lot of married people who are non monogamous it’s just not consensual.
I’m a Christian y’all. I understand the whole concept of one man one woman but that is being challenged now and what right do we have to tell people how to live their lives? I say if you have your belief system, that’s wonderful. But I don’t think you should impose it on other people. Give them the information and give them the option to chose their path in life. And contrary to popular belief, these alternative lifestyles are not all about sex. I had a response to my post just before this one and to paraphrase: “Bringing another person into the situation is only going to complicate it and just for a few moments of pleasure/gratification…” Yes, bringing other people in is complex but that just means there must be open communication. Stay tuned for further exploration of this subject. The research is quite compelling. Monogamy forever….? Hmmm?
Why does what Jill and Jane or Stan and Fred do in their bedroom bother you so much? How does allowing them to get married have such an impact or your life? If I choose to share my beliefs with you and they’re different from yours, do I now get to impose my beliefs upon you because I think you’re wrong? I get the whole issue with Christians not believing in gay marriage but I am a Christian who believes in letting others live their lives as they see fit. Allowing same sex couples to live their lives doesn’t change what you believe. Remember, not too terribly long ago, society was dead set against interracial couples getting married. How is this different?
Let’s talk about gender identity for a moment. Many people with Aspergers struggle with gender identity issues. It has nothing to do with them being homosexual, it has more to do with them feeling comfortable. According to my research, some of them do discover that they may be gay but for the most part, it’s just an issue of comfort
Transgender folks have made a decision to wear clothing that doesn’t fit society’s idea of how a man or a woman should dress. Some of them choose to identify themselves as the opposite sex because they say it makes them feel more comfortable. Once again, why does this bother some of you so much? Hell, I hate dresses but I’m not a lesbian. I also enjoy watching sports, drinking beer and smoking cigars… Who decided that these are inappropriate activities for a proper lady to enjoy?
In responding to my previous question about “space,” there was an assertion made by Jane (not her real name). “If nobody is making an effort to get together, then that is definitely too much space.” It was stated that… “Relationships cannot flourish without time to bond.” How do you feel? Do you need your me time ? My response was, “what if that’s the problem? What if people really don’t want to bond?” I speak about this in my book, “Confessions of a Reformed Cougar: Younger Isn’t Necessarily Better” Get the book.
From a personal perspective, I completely understand the sense of loss and pain involved when you have put your heart and soul into a relationship and it goes south. Humans respond negatively to pain. I suppose as a defense mechanism, we could determine that it’s just easier to have serial relationships that are “safe.” Rather than putting in the work to build a lasting relationship and end up getting badly hurt.
How do we resolve this issue? At what age do you come to the realization that you are too old to be “bed hopping” or “relationship hopping?” When do you grow up and settle down? Come on now, don’t be shy. Lend your wisdom and insight to help us answer these questions.
So…before I said I didn’t date much in high school and college. As it turns out, I had a “steady beau” in both high school and college. It seemed as though I had to put forth such an effort to get each of them that I didn’t feel the need to “play the field.” Also, young ladies who had multiple boyfriends back then were not looked upon favorably. There’s also the fact that most Aspies are quite loyal and often stay in relationships long after we should have been gone.
Now that I’m a grown-up, I’ve begun to weigh the pros and cons of being in a “steady” relationship. On the one hand, you have someone who’s always there to support you when you need them. On the other hand, you have someone who’s ALWAYS THERE… What if you’re the type of person who likes to have their own space? When you’re in a committed, monogamous relationship, you have to consider your significant other’s feelings and needs. You also have to put the shoe on the other foot as well. What happens when you’re the one feeling down and you need comforting but you have pushed your partner away and they really aren’t feeling like taking on the role of supportive partner? The answer, in my opinion is you can’t have it both ways.
There has to be give and take as well as compromise in a healthy relationship. As you spend more time together and learn to respect each other’s boundaries and needs, you can learn to give each other space as well as supporting and comforting each other when the need arises.
Now allow me to play “Devil’s Advocate” for a moment. Is there something in between for grown folks who want to have the comfort and support of a significant other but not the commitment. Can you get your physical needs met without being in a marriage or relationship? Would you consider that immoral? In my observations, there seem to be a lot of folks out there who want to have the milk without buying the cow…
Let’s save that for another discussion. In the meantime, check out my new YouTube Channel – “Aspie Cougar.” As soon as I post this blog, I’m going to add a question for us to mull over. I hope you will join the discussion with the grown folks.
I saw the most wonderful story on Facebook the other day. It was about a couple who are both on the Autism Spectrum and they were married Saturday. This is particularly encouraging for me because I’m always reading about how difficult it is for folks on the spectrum to navigate the dating scene. Since social awkwardness is a major trait in High Functioning Autism, I have to say this may be a fair assessment.
I did not date a whole lot in high school. I didn’t date much in college. I prefered to have a “steady.” I’ll elaborate on that in the next installment. Nevertheless, I didn’t know I was on the spectrum at the time so I just figured I was yet another awkward teenager…
I have been married twice. The whole “marriage thing” has not worked well for me. Maybe I just haven’t found the right person…huh? To be fair, the demise of my second marriage had some mitigating circumstances. No, I will not reveal them here. After all, I have to give you some motivation to buy my book: “Life is a Precious Gift – live it with NO REGRETS.”
Many of us are raised in the judeo-christian tradition of dating to find a lifelong mate. I have never been one who was much of a conformist. I believe that you must do what is best for your happiness and sanity. That being said, I was happily married but… I have an adventuresome spirit. The person I marry must understand that. Now he is more than welcome to come along with me as I explore. Clubbing is absolutely not a requirement but I like to do that too, occasionally. And I have no problem staying home and relaxing in front of the television or hey, here’s a concept – carrying on an intelligent conversation. But I’m not going to be a happy camper or very easy to get along with if I can’t get out sometimes and do stuff. Trust and believe, if you do not want to join me, you do not want to be the cause of clipping my wings unless you are ill or in dire need of my attention.
So what is the take away? Many people on the Autism Spectrum have narrow or focused interests. If you’re going to date someone, I would start with looking around at the establishments or events that you frequent. The couple I mentioned at the beginning of this post met at an Autism Support Group. Don’t have one near you? Start one! In order to date people, you have to meet people. Finally, take the pressure off yourself. Everyone you date does not have to eventually become your spouse.