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Emotions are often difficult to understand and interpret, even on a person without a disorder. It is therefore normal to have some difficulty understanding the emotions transmitted by a person who functions differently from you, or who has a disorder such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

This does not mean that you will not be able to understand and interpret the emotions of others, you just need to take the time to identify the codes and decipher the different emotions. To do this, we have prepared an article giving you many tips and suggestions for understanding emotions. So, don’t wait any longer to read on and learn more!




It is never easy to recognize and interpret emotions properly, even your own. An autistic person also has difficulty expressing feelings in the same way we do and sharing them. Whether a person is autistic or not, they will have to go through specific steps to express emotions.

You can convey emotions from facial expressions, body movements and positions, or even the sound of your voice. The way feelings are expressed can be more or less complex and you work on this without realizing it since you were born, just like an autistic person even if the evolution differs.




An autistic person will feel emotions and will want to communicate emotions to those around them. However, it is not uncommon to encounter difficulties in expressing oneself. Indeed, people with autism spectrum disorder will encounter certain obstacles in recognizing various facial expressions. They will also have difficulty communicating by imitating the emotional expressions of others, which will make it difficult for them to understand their own emotions and to interpret them in the right way day after day.

It is therefore necessary to be aware that the emotional codes of an autistic person are different, and that it is not easy for anyone to understand the way emotions are expressed. It takes patience and observation to interpret each sign correctly.

People with autism will recognize different emotions in many ways and some will be more difficult to analyze than others. So, it should come as no surprise that people with autism will be awkward in expressing certain emotions throughout their lives.




To understand your emotions, you put words and habits on them. The same is true for the emotions of people with autism, although the codes are different. In fact, an autistic baby will develop in a certain way and they will learn to express their emotions in a distinct way. We can often see similarities with the development of a typical baby when we analyze the emotional development of a person with autism spectrum disorder.

Even though emotions are passed on through gestures as we grow older, there are often barriers to verbalizing certain feelings. This problem often leads people to believe that an autistic person will be devoid of feelings when this idea is totally false.

It is therefore important to be aware that an autistic person will often have difficulty effectively verbalizing what they are feeling, and this discomfort can quickly become overwhelming. The autistic person will thus encounter obstacles in interacting with others because their codes will be different. It is important to take the time to listen to an autistic person, to take the time to understand their codes, their language. This will allow you to read the emotions properly and to react in the right way. Without forgetting that an autistic person who will be understood, will be able to more easily gain self-confidence and try to develop their emotional language to go even further in the exchanges.

You will therefore need to learn to read emotions and to help the person you are talking to read your feelings as well. People with autism will often analyze emotions differently and will misinterpret your emotions, which can be confusing. They will take the time to deal with challenges to better manage their understanding of others, while taking advantage of your patience to feel understood by another person. This will require patience.


In our educational app COCO, you can also learn to recognize your emotions with the game “Mime an emotion”, in the Coco Moves part. By clicking on the question mark, you can learn to better recognize the different emotions.

This game to mime emotions is also accessible in the break, after every 15 minutes of screen. In fact, every 15 minutes, children are asked to choose a physical activity to take an active break when you can mime the emotions.



You are surprised when you are amazed at something, at a person or an object. 

It is that feeling when you receive an unexpected gift. So in this situation, you have your eyes and mouth wide open and you cannot wait to open your gift.


When you are confused you are usually lost because of something that happened. You can even forget the name of a person or the name of an object.

To mimic confusion, you can frown your eyebrows, shrug your shoulders or even form a big ‘O’ with your mouth.


Inspiration is what happens when you imagine and create things just by thinking of it. Like when you are drawing, writing, or playing with your toys and making up stories.

When you’re feeling inspired you wrinkle your eyes, you scratch your head a little and you smile when the idea comes.



Affection is something you feel when you are moved by something, when you are thinking positive thoughts about a friend, a family member or a pet. 

Here you can smile and think about good time. You can give a hug or kiss someone,  tell your classmate that you like them.


Boredom happens when you don’t care for what you are doing, you want to do something else like talking to your friends and not listen to the person in front of you.

You can blow really loudly and roll your eyes. You can also wiggle in your chair.


Pain is a feeling you don’t like, you usually feel it when you hurt yourself, and that is physical pain.

It can also be when you are missing someone or something very much. 

To express pain, you can wrinkle your eyes and grit your teeth. You can also touch the part where you are hurt.

Discover the COCO THINKS and COCO MOVES app

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Supporting children with autism

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