Autism doesn’t end with childhood. It lasts a lifetime. Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) face many challenges. While some individuals experience severe impairments, others have many high functioning abilities. An individual’s disabilities and abilities may not be immediately obvious.
Adults with ASD have many strengths and, given a supportive environment, can flourish and make significant contributions to society. Understanding autism strengths is important for providing appropriate support and opportunities for individuals with ASD to have full and meaningful lives.
Lifelong needs include:
Autism McLean encourages local efforts to address the ongoing lifelong needs of adults with ASD. See our whitepaper about lifelong needs and opportunities for people with autism in McLean County.
Adults living with autism often have difficulty finding programs and supports that allow them to live more independently. Challenges affects many aspects of their daily lives. Needs and abilities vary from person to person. Supports for adults with ASD that address their broad range of needs are an ongoing community need.
There can be a substantial difference between individual verbal skills and performance skills. For example, a person with ASD can be highly intelligent and able to do complex math and abstract reasoning, but may not know how to apply for a job or socialize with coworkers. Thus, supports are needed to serve a wide range of needs.
Strengths may include:
- exceptional memory
- high level of accuracy
- intensive focus
- strict adherence to rules
- affinity for structure and systems
- loyalty and trustworthy
- ability to perform complex repetitive tasks
- keen interest in specific subjects
- and more.
Challenges may include:
- language and communication
- social interaction
- hyper-focus on singular subjects
- hypersensitive to sensory stimuli
- eccentric behaviors
- and more.