Social self-efficacy and mental well-being in autistic adults - exploring the role of social identity and the Double Empathy Problem
MetadataShow full item record
Camus, L., Rajendran, G., Prof, & Stewart, M. (2022). Social self-efficacy and mental well-being in autistic adults - exploring the role of social identity and the Double Empathy Problem. https://doi.org/10.31234/osf.io/5dtw4
The Double Empathy theory proposes a lack of shared understanding between autistic and non-autistic people leads to interaction difficulties between the two groups. Social self-efficacy may be affected by double empathy and social identity and may be associated with well-being. This study aims to understand whether social self-efficacy relates to mental well-being in autistic adults, and whether social identity and double empathy play a role in this relationship. 512 autistic adults completed measures of social self-efficacy, social identity, mental well-being, and autistic traits. In-group social self-efficacy (or social confidence related to interacting with in-group members) was found to be higher than out-group social self-efficacy. Secondly, while controlling for age of participants, in-group social self-efficacywas positively associated with well-being. Finally, neither number or type of social identities mediated the relationships between types of social self-efficacy and mental well-being when controlling for age. These findings suggest social self-efficacy depends on the group one interacts with, supporting the extension of the double empathy theory to other social groups. This may provide more insight into the phenomenon and open avenues for support. Results also indicate social self-efficacy is related to mental well-being and may be a good target for support in autistic adults.