I'm autistic and I struggle with a low level of empathy, my boyfriend on the other hand is also neurodivergent, but has incredibly high empathy. Does anyone have any tips for me on how to understand him better, and express that I care through other ways?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Chronic Restlessness and Agitation

View all
  • Bluesea


    I think with measuring empathy there is no right or wrong amount when taking empathy tests as a neurodivergent person. I scored lower on the Empathy Quotient assessment than the average autistic person and it surprised me as I thought I was a very empathetic person. However, the questions were often about if you would help or know when to help someone with their emotions. Because of this it's hard to know my or another person's emotions, it would be helpful if the other person was aware of that so that they would have to be very clear about how they feel and tell you they are going to talk about their feelings with you at the times they want your help. It's always nice hearing other people's perspectives or just having someone be there for you. Personally I tend to ask the person I'm talking to, many questions so I can understand and then come up with things to say. With my boyfriend I don't hold back on the questions, and eventually he got used to it.

  • Cloudlight


    For me and my girlfriend, establishing clear expectations for what needs to be communicated was very helpful. I explained that I want to be able to emotionally support her, but I need her to ask me for support in order to know that it's needed. As long as you clearly state your desires and intentions, your partner will hopefully be willing to discuss their needs and how they would best recieve support.

  • Chirp


    I always think it's important to remember that there's a difference between empathy, sympathy, and compassion. Perhaps you may struggle to understand what and why he's feeling, but you DO understand that he is feeling a certain way from an objective standpoint. Sympathy and compassion are handy here, because you can still support him and show you care.

☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.