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While I don't feel it truly defines me, I have Asperger's. There are many stereotypes about people with Asperger's that are either untrue or don't apply to me. For instance, I have a sense of humor and tell jokes that people actually laugh at. I see humor in others too. Nor do I lack a sense of empathy. But I do, however, have a complete inability to read or notice body language. This makes me very awkward with women. From what I have heard and experienced firsthand, women don't really like a man who "asks"; they would rather be with a guy who "takes charge."
I've heard women give off subtle clues when they want a man to kiss them, but I can't recognize those clues, so how do I know? And what if we're making out—she might or might not want me to touch her breasts and make a move toward having sex. I have slept with a few women who were very sexually aggressive and basically took me home with them. I got no complaints, so I don't think I'm bad in bed—I just don't have a clue how to get there. Can you help?
—Large-Hearted and Lonely
I began answering your question in a responsible, journalistic manner, e-mailing a therapist I know, thinking he might have some insights for the Asperger's-afflicted dater. He laughed (well, as much as you can via e-mail) and said that he'd been so oblivious to her signals that the last woman he dated had to inform him, "You don't seem to understand—if you come over, I promise you'll get laid."
So see—a mental-health professional is as clueless as you!
I am not downplaying your dilemma at all, believe me. I know you're operating at a distinct disadvantage here, but you are not alone. I mean, even Olympics super-stud Ryan Lochte said (not to me), "If I could have one superpower, I'd be like Mel Gibson in What Women Want, where he reads women's minds." (Note to Ryan Lochte: If they are heterosexual, they are thinking they want to see you naked. You're welcome.)
We ladies are mysterious, multilayered creatures, capable of changing our minds on a moment's notice, but here are some signals that a woman might be interested—she'll touch your arm or shoulder (but probably not your cock) when making a point. Her pupils may dilate. She may blush. Or she may do none of these things and still wish you'd kiss her. Or not.
I think your idea of verbalizing is a sound one, and I agree that asking can sound a little wimpy, so instead of asking, make it a statement—something along the lines of "I want to kiss you so fucking bad right now." That's hot, and it's not a question. And if you get rejected, so what? It happens to everyone.
You'll also find that as women get older and figure out that men are kind of clueless (usually after a birthday gift of Nintendo and poly-blend crotchless panties), they're more apt to tell you what they want and need.