“Naked and Afraid XL”'s Nathan Gets a Different Kind of Vulnerable When He Shares Diagnosis with Teammates (Exclusive)

After Nathan Martinez gets candid about his diagnosis, his teammate, Terra Short, reveals how they can empathize with his difficulties with assimilation as the first transgender, non-binary survivalist

Being a contestant on Naked and Afraid XL is more about getting vulnerable physically — and Nathan Martinez isn't afraid to bare it all.

In PEOPLE's exclusive look at the show's season 10 premiere, airing May 19, the survivalist sits down with his teammates Lynsey McCarver and Terra Short to give them a rundown of his communication patterns. He also reveals his Asperger's Syndrome diagnosis.

"Some people may think I'm weird or strange, but I'm not good at words for a reason," Nathan tells the cameras of his intentions to open up to his crew. "I don't talk about it very often unless someone asks a question. So, I'd like to have a powwow with my teammates and make sure that we're all on the same page."

When the trio stops to rest at a nearby creek, Nathan reveals he's been waiting for the right moment to share his diagnosis.

Related: Naked and Afraid XL Sees 12 Returning Survivalists on 'Soul-Breaking' 40-Day Journey Through the Wilderness (Exclusive)

<p>warner bros</p> Nathan on 'Naked and Afraid XL'

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Nathan on 'Naked and Afraid XL'

"I have Asperger's Syndrome so it's kind of hard to read people or read between the lines," he says. "People say something to me and I just won't respond. It's not because I'm being rude. It's because I can't think of what to say and I get stuck on a very, very narrow focus and can't switch rapidly to something else."

Lynsey notes how she's noticed that Nathan can become "hyper-focused" on a thing or task, and he explains that he has difficulty responding to people when he's "working on something" at the same time.

"I was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome when I was about 27 or so," Nathan tells the cameras. "And that is a cognitive disability that is on the autism spectrum that causes you to have difficulty in social situations."

"The diagnosis did change my life in that it gave me an explanation for something I had no explanation for, which had led some depression in the past," he continues. "Now, I know that it's just a different way of being."

Related: Naked and Afraid Survivalist Says 'Free Bleeding' on the 'Motherland' During Her Period Is a 'Blessing' (Exclusive)

<p>warner bros</p> Terra on 'Naked and Afraid XL'

warner bros

Terra on 'Naked and Afraid XL'

As his teammates thank him for opening up about his Asperger's, Terra, the first transgender nonbinary contestant on Naked and Afraid, admits that they can empathize with some of Nathan's struggles.

"Don't worry, it's not like we're gonna hold it against you or anything. You know, we're a team. We're a partnership," Terra tells Nathan before delving deeper into a conversation with cameras.

"I know that people with Asperger's have a hard time assimilating into society. Being trans non binary, I can relate," Terra says. "So you know, we want to make him feel as comfortable as possible, and let him know that he's 1/3 of this group, not anything less."

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Naked and Afraid XL premieres on Sunday, May 19 at 8 p.m. ET on Discovery Channel.

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