This study examined how people with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder (HFASD) perceive and explain their own repetitive behaviors. Despite the wealth of knowledge on repetitive behaviors in HFASD, there are few studies on repetitive behaviors from the perspective of adults with HFASD. Here, data were collected from semi structured, phenomenological interviews with 16 adults (aged 35–55 years) with ASD. The findings indicated four main reasons for repetitive behavior: enhancing the ability to function; reducing external stimuli and avoiding communication; coping with stress, distress, and excitement; and coping with social communication. Conclusion: The findings suggest that repetitive behaviors play a functional role in people with HFASD and also serve as a way for these individuals to cope with their environment.
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© 2019 Elsevier Ltd
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Repetitive behaviors