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What careers do Aspergers adults have the most success with?

"This is a question specifically for Mark Hutten: I understand that you provide counseling for adults with autism. In your practice, what careers do your clients seem to have the most success with?"

I would say that most of my ASD clients seem to prefer jobs that are (a) technical in nature and (b) do not require a lot of social interaction. For example:
  • accountant
  • computer programmer
  • computer systems analyst
  • credit analyst 
  • engineering
  • financial analyst
  • graphic designer
  • lab technician
  • medical transcriptionist
  • researcher
  • software developer
  • web designer

But what I tell all my clients is this: While it is true that the jobs you might prefer won’t involve much social contact, a big part of overcoming social deficits associated with autism is exposure to social situations. Avoiding jobs that entail social contact just perpetuates the problem. Deep down, you may actually love jobs that involve social interaction. You’ve been brainwashed (either by yourself or someone else) that you are not a “people person” …that you don’t have what it takes to be companionable. But, adults on the spectrum don’t necessarily have bad social skills AND good technical skills.

I encourage my ASD clients to work more on getting out of their comfort zone than worrying about “the best jobs” for people with autism. The best job for you is the one that challenges you to grow and learn …it’s the one that brings you closer to people, not further away. And there are plenty of “techy” jobs out there that also connect you to people.

2 comments:

  1. Here's what I have a dream of doing: helping adults on the autism spectrum learn to create their own internet business. It seems a great fit: focusing on technical things, while having some of the privacy of working from home. At the same time, the adult with Aspergers can learn to push her or himself by networking via Skype or at meetups and conferences.

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    Replies
    1. Great idea Steve. This is very much what I'm working on. There are several ways one can start making money online easily, such as matched betting (at least in the UK). Binary options trading is another thing someone on the spectrum could learn as it involves charts and technical analysis and no social interaction. But ultimately you want something that will create residual income.

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