Nico and Latoya, two individuals on the spectrum, have found love despite the common misconception that people with autism do not wish to or are incapable of engaging in social or romantic relationships. In a heartwarming video shared on CNN’s Facebook page, the couple is seen holding hands, sharing a kiss, and gushing about how they met.
HuffPost Lifestyle reports Nico recalling the first time he saw Latoya, “My first thought was, ‘be still my beating heart, that is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen in my entire life’”. He continues saying, “She just looked so amazing. Her glasses were reflecting the moonlight, like a disco ball, she had the prettiest smile and her cheeks were so rosy.”
The video shows the two on a date at an arcade hand in hand as they enjoy various arcade games. Their love for each other is obvious from the way they look at each other to the endless smiles they spread on each other’s faces.
Paige Siper, chief psychologist from Seaver Autism Centre, told CNN, “There are a lot of benefits to people with autism finding friendships and relationships: better quality of life, more self confidence, happiness.”
The couple, who describe their relationship as a romantic friendship, admit they both struggled with connecting and forming relationships with people in the past. Nico describes, “I was feeling pretty lonely considering how difficult it is for someone with autism to find someone as amazing as Latoya.” Similarly, Latoya describes before she met Nico, she was all on her own.
Nico realizes that separately, him and Latoya are amazing individuals, but collectively, they are extraordinary. He adds at the end, “Plus we both love pizza, so that’s an extra bonus”, bringing a smile to both of their faces.
Nico and Latoya are a prime example that individuals with autism are perfectly capable of forming friendships and finding love.