Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders

Living Edition
| Editors: Fred R. Volkmar

Recent Developments in Understanding Friendship of Children and Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders

  • Neysa PetrinaEmail author
  • Mark Carter
  • Jennifer Stephenson
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6435-8_102405-1

Definition

The conceptual definition of friendship can be summed up as “stable, frequent, and interconnected affective interactions that are manifested by certain classes of behavioural markers (e.g., sharing, play and conversational skills) that facilitate the functions of companionships, intimacy, and closeness” (Bauminger et al. 2008, p. 136).

Historical Background

The impairments in the areas of social interaction and communication, which are core features of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and problems with emotional and social reciprocity (Fuentes et al. 2012) may result in difficulties in establishing peer relationships appropriate to the child’s developmental level. A growing body of literature has now documented some important differences and similarities in behavioral and affective manifestation of friendships, between typical children and those with ASD. This area of research is rapidly developing, and several recent developments in children and adolescents with ASD will be...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

References and Readings

  1. Bauminger, N., & Kasari, C. (2000). Loneliness and friendship in high-functioning children with autism. Child Development, 71, 447–456.  https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8624.00156.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Bauminger, N., Shulman, C., & Agam, G. (2004). The link between perceptions of self and of social relationships in high-functioning children with autism. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, 16, 193–214.  https://doi.org/10.1023/B:JODD.0000026616.24896.c8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bauminger, N., Solomon, M., Aviezer, A., Heung, K., Gazit, L., Brown, J., & Rogers, S. J. (2008). Children with autism and their friends: A multidimensional study of friendship in high-functioning autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 36, 135–150.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10802-007-9156-x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Bell, B. T. (2016). Understanding adolescents. In L. Little, D. Fitton, B. T. Bell, & N. Toth (Eds.), Human-computer interaction series. Perspectives on HCI research with teenagers (pp. 11–27). Cham: Springer International Publishing.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bottema-Beutel, K., Malloy, C., Cuda, J., Kim, S. Y., & MacEvoy, J. (2018). Responses to vignettes depicting friendship transgressions: Similarities and differences in children with and without autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 1–12.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-018-3828-y.
  6. Bottema-Beutel, K., Malloy, C., Cuda, J., Kim, S. Y., & MacEvoy, J. (2019). Friendship expectations may be similar for mental age-matched children with autism spectrum disorder and typically developing children. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 49, 4346–4354.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-019-04141-7.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Calder, L., Hill, V., & Pellicano, E. (2013). ‘Sometimes I want to play by myself’: Understanding what friendship means to children with autism in mainstream primary schools. Autism, 17, 296–316.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1362361312467866.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2016). Community report on autism 2016. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/documents/comm-report-autism-full-report.pdf.
  9. Chamberlain, B., Kasari, C., & Rotheram-Fuller, E. (2007). Involvement or isolation? The social networks of children with autism in regular classrooms. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 37, 230–242.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-006-0164-4.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Cook, A., Ogden, J., & Winstone, N. (2018). Friendship motivations, challenges and the role of masking for girls with autism in contrasting school settings. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 33, 302–315.  https://doi.org/10.1080/08856257.2017.1312797.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Cridland, E. K., Jones, S. C., Caputi, P., & Magee, C. A. (2014). Being a girl in a boys’ world: Investigating the experiences of girls with autism spectrum disorders during adolescence. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 1261–1274.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-013-1985-6.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Daniel, L. S., & Billingsley, B. S. (2010). What boys with an autism spectrum disorder say about establishing and maintaining friendships. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 25, 220–229.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1088357610378290.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Finke, E. H., McCarthy, J. H., & Sarver, N. A. (2019). Self-perception of friendship style: Young adults with and without autism spectrum disorder. Autism and Developmental Language Impairments, 4, 1–16.  https://doi.org/10.1177/2396941519855390.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Foggo, R. S. V., & Webster, A. A. (2017). Understanding the social experiences of adolescent females on the autism spectrum. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 35, 74–85.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rasd.2016.11.006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Freeman, S. F. N., Gulsrud, A., & Kasari, C. (2015). Brief report: Linking early joint attention and play abilities to later reports of friendships for children with ASD. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 45, 2259–2266.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-015-2369-x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Fuentes, J., Bakare, M., Munir, K., Aguayo, P., Gaddour, N., Oner, O., & Mercadante, M. (2012). Autism spectrum disorders. In J. M. Rey (Ed.), IACAPAP e-textbook of child and adolescent mental health (pp. 1–27). Geneva: International Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Professions. Retrieved from http://iacapap.org/wp-content/uploads/C.2-AUTISM-SPECTRUM-072012.pdf.Google Scholar
  17. Furman, W. (1996). The measurement of children and adolescent’s perceptions of friendships: Conceptual and methodological issues. In W. M. Bukowski, A. F. Newcomb, & W. W. Hartup (Eds.), The company they keep: Friendships in childhood and adolescence (pp. 41–65). Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Gilfford-Smith, M., & Brownell, C. (2003). Childhood peer relationships: Social acceptance, friendships, and peer networks. Journal of School Psychology, 41, 235–284.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0022-4405(03)00048-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kasari, C., Locke, J., Gulsrud, A., & Rotheram-Fuller, E. (2011). Social networks and friendships at school: Comparing children with and without ASD. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41, 533–544.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-010-1076-x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Mendelson, J. L., Gates, J. A., & Lerner, M. D. (2016). Friendship in school-age boys with autism spectrum disorders: A meta-analytic summary and developmental, process-based model. Psychological Bulletin, 142, 601–622.  https://doi.org/10.1037/bul0000041.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Moyse, R., & Porter, J. (2015). The experience of the hidden curriculum for autistic girls at mainstream primary schools. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 30, 187–201.  https://doi.org/10.1080/08856257.2014.986915.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. O’Hagan, S., & Hebron, J. (2017). Perceptions of friendship among adolescents with autism spectrum conditions in a mainstream high school resource provision. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 32, 314–328.  https://doi.org/10.1080/08856257.2016.1223441.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Parker, J. G., & Asher, S. R. (1993). Friendship and friendship quality in middle childhood: Links with peer group acceptance and feelings of loneliness and social dissatisfaction. Developmental Psychology, 29, 611–621.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0012-1649.29.4.611.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Petrina, N., Carter, M., & Stephenson, J. (2014). The nature of friendship in children with autism spectrum disorders: A systematic review. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 8, 111–126.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rasd.2013.10.016.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Petrina, N., Carter, M., Stephenson, J., & Sweller, N. (2016). Perceived friendship quality of children with autism spectrum disorder as compared to their peers in mixed and non-mixed dyads. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 46, 1334–1343.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-015-2673-5.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Petrina, N., Carter, M., Stephenson, J., & Sweller, N. (2017). Friendship satisfaction in children with autism spectrum disorder and nominated friends. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 47, 384–392.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-016-2970-7.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Rotheram-Fuller, E., Kasari, C., Chamberlain, B., & Locke, J. (2010). Social involvement of children with autism spectrum disorders in elementary school classrooms. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 51, 1227–1234.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1469-7610.2010.02289.x.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Sedgewick, F., Hill, V., Yates, R., Pickering, L., & Pellicano, E. (2016). Gender differences in the social motivation and friendship experiences of autistic and non-autistic adolescents. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 46, 1297–1306.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-015-2669-1.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Sedgewick, F., Hill, V., & Pellicano, E. (2018). Parent perspectives on autistic girls’ friendships and futures. Autism and Developmental Language Impairments, 3.  https://doi.org/10.1177/2396941518794497.
  30. Sturrock, A., Yau, N., Freed, J., & Adams, C. (2019). Speaking the same language? A preliminary investigation, comparing the language and communication skills of females and males with high-functioning autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Advance online publication.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-019-03920-6.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neysa Petrina
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mark Carter
    • 2
  • Jennifer Stephenson
    • 2
  1. 1.University of SydneySydneyAustralia
  2. 2.School of Education, Macquarie UniversitySydneyAustralia