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Dealing With An Aspergers Husband: Tips For Married Couples

“I am married to a man with Aspergers. I must say this has been the biggest challenge in my entire life. Although I do love my husband dearly, I am finding myself slipping into feelings of resentment quite often. What advice would you have for a couple that is experiencing marital problems due to the fact that one partner’s brain is wired differently?”

Here are some facts about adults with Aspergers and High-Functioning Autism that neurotypical (non-Aspergers) spouses need to understand:
  • A person with Aspergers has challenges understanding or predicting the consequences of his/her behavior on others.  Therefore, the Aspergers spouse may see the neurotypical spouse as irrational or illogical.
  • Aspergers adults, because they have a hard time separating boundaries at times, may hear criticism of a family member (e.g., father, mother, sibling) as a criticism of them, and they likely will not be willing to tolerate it.
  • Aspergers men in particular may find conflict almost intolerable.  They may hear a difference of opinion or an attempt to explain a different perspective about a situation as conflict or a criticism of who they are.
  • Neurotypical women especially tend to want their spouse to understand them and their feelings.  However, they need to realize that this is something they may not be able to get from their Aspergers spouse.  Some change may be possible, but the neurotypical spouse may need to adjust his/her expectation, and find other places for support without being unrealistic about what they expect from their Aspergers spouse.
  • The most basic elements of speaking and hearing are the most important issues that the Aspergers-Neurotypical couples may have.  Aspies often have a very difficult time hearing negative emotions expressed by their spouse.  They may refuse to communicate, but then end up lashing-out in a very hurtful way later on.

So what can Aspergers-Neurotypical partners do to maintain their relationship. Here are some important tips:
  1. Both spouses must make a serious commitment to making the relationship work. However, the neurotypical partner is going to have to understand that it will feel to them that they are the party making more accommodations.  Even if the Aspie accepts and understands their diagnosis, the truth is that your brains are wired differently.  As a neurotypical partner, you will need to shift from "what is wrong" about your spouse and the relationship, to "what is right."  You will need to build on the strengths, and value the differences, versus seeing your spouse as insensitive and uncaring. 
  1. Both spouses need to have an in-depth understanding of Aspergers and how marital relationships are affected. 
  1. Conflict is normal, even healthy. Differences between you mean that there are things you can learn from each other. Often conflict shows us where we can or need to grow. 
  1. Couples often derail a resolution when they try to acknowledge the other spouse's position, but then add a "but" in their next breath and reaffirm their position (e.g., “I can understand why you didn't pick up the dishes in the family room, but why do you think I'm the maid?”). 
  1. Defending yourself, whether by vehemently protesting your innocence or rightness or by turning the tables and attacking, escalates the fight. Instead of upping the ante, ask for more information, details, and examples. There is usually some basis for the other person’s complaint. When you meet a complaint with curiosity, you make room for understanding. 
  1. Develop the self-discipline to set limits on your anger and your behavior. If either of you resort to physical force and violence in your relationship, seek professional help. Acting out your anger in aggressive ways violates the other person’s boundaries and sense of safety. Each of us has a right to be safe and free of abuse or physical danger in our relationships. 
  1. Fighting ends when cooperation begins. Asking politely for suggestions or alternatives invites collaboration. Careful consideration of options shows respect. Offering alternatives of your own shows that you also are willing to try something new. 
  1. For both “neurotypicals” and “Aspies”: Become students of each other's culture. Pretend that you are learning a new language from a new country.  If you are an Aspie, remember that, in many ways, your spouse is from another planet, the neurotypical planet.  And if you are a neurotypical, remember that your Aspergers spouse is from the Aspergers planet.  Celebrate the diversity and the differences. 
  1. For the Aspergers partner, reconsider your perception of your spouse and of yourself.  Consider that, because of the differences in the way your brain works, a lot of what your spouse is telling you about your role in problems is probably right. 
  1. For the neurotypical partner, shift your focus from what you are not getting from your Aspergers spouse to see and value the strengths he or she brings to the relationship. 
  1. Forget that adage about always resolving anger before going to bed -- and let someone sleep on the couch. Going to bed angry is often the best choice. It allows spouses to clear their thoughts, get some sleep, and make a date to resume the fight (which might seem less important in the light of day). 
  1. Friendly fighting sticks with the issue. Neither party resorts to name calling or character assassination. It’s enough to deal with the problem without adding the new problem of hurting each other’s feelings. 
  1. Global statements that include the words “always” and “never” almost always get you nowhere and never are true. When your spouse has complaints, ask to move from global comments of exasperation to specific examples so you can understand exactly what he/she is talking about. When you have complaints, do your best to give your spouse examples to work with. 
  1. In the heat of an argument, threatening to leave the relationship is manipulative and hurtful. It creates anxiety about being abandoned and undermines your ability to resolve your issues. It quickly erodes your spouse’s confidence in your commitment to the relationship. Trust is not easily restored once it is broken in this way. It makes the problems in your relationship seem much bigger than they need to be. 
  1. It is best if the diagnosis of Aspergers is made and accepted by the Aspergers spouse. One of the best things that can happen is for the couple to seek help from a therapist or marriage coach who understands the unique differences between Aspies and neurotypicals.  If the therapist does not understand the unique differences, all that will happen is the couple going back and forth, arguing for their own view of the situation.  And the Aspie will have a hard time understanding his/her impact on the neurotypical. 
  1. It’s pointless to blame each other. Blaming your partner distracts you from solving the problem at hand. It invites your partner to be defensive, and it escalates the argument.  
  1. Putting your spouse down or criticizing your spouse’s character shows disrespect for his/her dignity. In sports there are many rules that prevent one player from intentionally injuring another. In marriage and relationships, similar rules must apply. When you intentionally injure your spouse, it’s like saying, “You are not safe with me. I will do whatever it takes to protect myself or to win.” 
  1. Small concessions can turn the situation around. If you give a little, it makes room for the other person to make concessions too. Small concessions lead to larger compromises. Compromise doesn’t have to mean that you’re meeting each other exactly 50-50. Sometimes it’s a 60-40 or even 80-20 agreement. This isn’t about score-keeping. It’s about finding a solution that is workable for both of you. 
  1. Stay in the present and resist the temptation to use the situation as an occasion to bring up other issues from the past. It’s discouraging to keep bringing up the past. You can’t change the past. You can only change today. You can look forward to a better future. Try to keep your focus on what can be done today to resolve the issue at hand and go forward from there. If you get off-topic, on to other issues, stop yourselves and agree to get back on track. You can always come back to other issues later.  
  1. Taking a 1-minute break can help a couple push the reset button on a fight. Stop, step out of the room, and reconnect when everyone's a little calmer. 
  1. The louder someone yells, the less likely they are to be heard. Even if your spouse yells, there’s no need to yell back. Taking the volume down makes it possible for people to start focusing on the issues instead of reacting to the noise
  1. There almost always are parts of a conflict that can be points of agreement. Finding common ground, even if it’s agreeing that there is a problem, is an important start to finding a common solution. 
  1. There are two things that derail intense fights: (1) admitting what you did to get your spouse ticked off, and (2) expressing empathy toward your spouse. This can be difficult, but typically is extremely successful. Letting down our defenses in the heat of battle seems counter-intuitive, but is actually very effective with couples. 
  1. There comes a point where discussing the matter doesn't help. So couples need to just hold each other when nothing else seems to be working. Reconnecting through touch is very important. 
  1. Use words that describe how you feel, and what you want and need, not what your spouse feels, wants, or believes. It may seem easier to analyze your spouse than to analyze yourself, but interpreting your spouse’s thoughts, feelings and motives will distract you from identifying your own underlying issues, and will likely invite defensiveness from your partner. More importantly, telling your partner what he/she thinks, believes or wants is controlling and presumptuous. It is saying that you know your partner’s inner world better than your partner does. Instead, work on identifying your own unmet needs, feelings, and ways of thinking and describe these needs and feelings to your partner. 
  1. When one speaks, the other should be really listening, not just planning their rebuttal. Take turns speaking and listening so that you both have a chance to say what you need. Have you ever tried to work through a difficult issue when your partner was talking over top of you and interrupting you? How did you feel? Consciously remind yourself about this when you feel an overwhelming urge to interrupt or speak your mind.
  1. When people feel strongly about something, it’s only fair to hear them out. Respectful listening means acknowledging their feelings, either verbally or through focused attention. It means never telling someone that he/she “shouldn’t” feel that way. It means saving your point of view until after you’ve let the other person know you understand that they feel intensely about the subject, even if you don’t quite get it.

Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples

 
COMMENTS:

•    Anonymous said... Great article.
•    Anonymous said... I know EXACTLY how you feel. This is my life in a nutshell. One thing that helps me is to write my thoughts and feelings down, then have him read them. This gives me time to calm down and think about how I want to say something. Also, you need to give logistical reasons for things, at least I do. "I need you to take out the trash because I'm cooking dinner." "It upsets me when you ignore me for video games because it makes me feel like you'd rather play games than be married to me. I'm asking for help because I can't do everything myself." "You cook, I clean. This is our agreement." "You can't be around chemicals, so you have to sweep, vacuum, and do the laundry." Getting emotional usually frustrates and/or shuts my husband down. Once I learned to take a step back, breathe, and think of a reasonable argument in a calm, low tone, things got SO much better. I'm a hot-tempered Texan, so it's not 100%. Ask him what he needs. That really changed my relationship. Also, try reading "Five Love Languages". There's a quiz you can both take that will tell you your love language, which was crazy eye-opening for me and my husband.
•    Anonymous said... Just try to hang in there.
•    Anonymous said... Read everything about it, have someone to talk to, have your OWN free time and try to be as rational as you can when you talk to him which you have to do when you know he is in the "listening mode". I'm married to adhd and asperger for 13 years Not easy but very possible!

*   Anonymous said... My husband says I am his dream girl and he wouldnt change a thing about me. Sure we didnt know I had as when we got married or for years but it sure helps to know and learn how to communicate better.
*   Anonymous said... I'll talk from your hubsnd's perspective, if you'll permit. Although a person with AS can tell they've angered or disappointed you, they rarely understand why. I'll assume that your husband has the normal high IQ common amongst folks with AS, and if so you can use that to your benefit to help him learn how to relate to you and "behave" in a more neuro-typical way. No one with AS wants conflict or strife, as it only serves to worsen the anxiety and depression that is so common in this disorder. Take the time to explain how his behavior made you feel, and most importantly tell him EXACTLY what you want him to do differently. Try to do so calmly, and at a time that both of you agree is appropriate to discuss the concern. Right when he gets home from work, or just before bed, would not be ideal.
•    Anonymous said…  "am finding myself slipping into feelings of resentment quite often" if you love him.. This comment wouldn't bother you or even spew out your mouth or even come as a thought in your head... that's what true love is.
•    Anonymous said… Everyone's wired differently and marriage is a journey, a struggle and hard work but also a fantastic experience. The key is two people who want to keep trying.
•    Anonymous said… Find a support group. It's easy for people to say "everyone is wired differently" but let's be honest - that puts the burden on the non-aspie partner to figure out how to deal because the aspie really cannot contribute to resolving the language barrier that happens in this situation. And there is a significant amount that is lost in translation leaving the non- aspire partner feeling not understood, not cared for and even unloved. My support group was the best thing that ever happened to me. Women who understand what it's like to be married to someone with Aspergers - no one else can even begin to understand the challenge. Many of the people at the adult Asperger's support groups I go to comment that their diagnosis made their marriages to their NT partner much happier. I think the linked article is pretty balanced. It points out that both people in the relationship need to work at understanding the other. The challenges are not because ONE partner "is wired differently", it's because TWO people have brains wired differently to each other. BOTH people in the relationship need to be willing to understand and adapt to each other's outlook.
•    Anonymous said… I completely understand the feelings. She is asking for advice. She didnt just up and leave. This is an example of true love. She is trying to understand and reach out for help. I agree with David Iverson.
•    Anonymous said… In my case my wife died before I got my diagnosis. We managed OK for 16 years but a lot of things fell into place in hindsight once I had the diagnosis. There were some arguments that I now understand were down to mutual misunderstanding from our brains being "wired differently" . Or times when we both felt a little unloved or uncared for because we didn't recognise the way the other was expressing their love. I can collate some of those things and ask the guys at the support group for their experiences to get something together.
•    Anonymous said… It also means being willings to understand what each person needs. That should be made very clear at the outset. This is not about right or wrong....just differences ....and what you can live with and what you can't.
•    Anonymous said… My partner has aspergers and honestly its not much of a relationship. Its a struggle & he doesn't care.


Post your comment below… 

145 comments:

  1. I'd like to ask the same question set at a different angle? I'm the aspie on my 2nd marriage going through the exact difficulties as my 1st. I love my hubby so much but I feel that we're on the road of doom, I know that its me causing the issues but I can't stop myself or change. I don't want a second divorce especially with children involved one of which has autsim herself.

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    1. By saying you can't change you have effectively cut off any opportunity for change. The truth is you *can* change but are choosing not too. It can be extremely hard but is not impossible, it may just need you taking smaller steps, over a longer period of time.

      Ask yourself this. In saying things are going the same way as the first marriage and in saying you *can't* change, you are effectively saying your partner will have to be the one to change.

      If you are not willing to change, why should they be?

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    2. When I read your comment I think of my bf and if he ever realizes how much he hurts me with his behaviour? I often think, "Would I ever be able to knowingly affect someone important to me in an adverse way and not do everything I could change it?" My ex was the same and I didn't understand it, he was abusive, excessive rages, I was going down fast but was able to get out alive. My bf has helped me with many things in my life and I have helped him with stuff know one could have ever done, especially having to deal with his disappearances.

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  2. DEFiantly counseling, someone that specializes in Aspergers. Also remember that Aspie's biggest issue is communication, and if you don't get counseling to learn how so communicate then it's probably not going to work out. That's why there is such a high divorce rate, because of lack of communication. It's not money, or things like that, it's communication.

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    1. so agree ,have been married to a/s man for lot of years,its been tough,as both kids a/s too,but after kids left felt could not carry on,but here in u/k,RELATE marriage guidance offer support and councelling to couples like us now,they specialize in aspergers,its helped us both ,for first time ever husband has realized his behaviour has made it so hard to stay married,and i have learnt to deal with meltdowns more,and to be more patiant,still not easy,i have read every book i can mainly bt tony attwood and joined 2 carers groups localy,it all helps,but not easy,but still love each other after 40 years of marriage,

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    2. I don't know what my life would look like without him? It would be hard now to start over, everyone has some crazy I tell myself. I only feel the need to work this through because of my boys they are teens but it is hard for them to understand this. We suffer in silence, his family pretends he's normal, they keep him at arms length I think its just less painful for them.

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  3. THIS IS INCREDIBLE!! My husband and I were just discussing this last night. How he is constantly mis reading me and other situations. How he feels frustrated that he tries and tries, but still misses out, even in social settings. We have a LOT of communication issues. But since we have a son diagnosed with Aspergers, we at least have something we can hold on to. We understand what is going on, but fixing it is definately a challenge. Many evenings are usually watchign tv, working on the computer or flat out arguing Nothing in between. We have tried therapy, but my husband doesn't see anything wrong with HIM! He lives by the adage if it isn't squeeking, then it doesn't need the grease, so it doesn't get attention. WE just talk about it all night and then forget about it until the next time. WE have been married for 15 years this way. probably remain so for another 40 or so. Not healthy, but we are adapting.

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    1. Just read your comment. How is your marriage? I have been married 12 years to an AS man. My health is terrible and there is no help or hope in sight. Not sure what I should do or how to get help.

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  4. This post has some wonderful advice. As a wife of an aspie for 12 years, I'd like to add some dietary changes. My husband is taking very good quality digestive enzymes, and they have helped so much. He is able to think before he overreacts and feels much more in control of his emotions. I wish the best for each of you in this situation.

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    1. Good to hear digestive enzymes helped. I have a used digestive enzymes and other products to help my 10 year old son, Seems to help a little bit. Wonder how much and how long your hubby used?

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  5. join the club,now i know hubby is a/s it explains so much but he was only dx after our kids,aspergers couple councelling did help,but yes its constant argueing,he loves it,picks at every word i say,and very critical of me and every one else,but now i understand,but it will never be easy,mine never discusses the a/s thing,not interested,its tough,and yes mine miss reads every thing i say,but boy i say one word to him and he is very touchy,but it so helps to know there is a reason and its called aspergers.

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    1. This is late in responding to a 2012 anon, but "get out". My advice to all women neurotypicals married to Aspies, as described above, you are NOT happy, are struggling, getting picked on, dealing with fights and melt-downs, it does NOT get better - it gets worse! Get out early while you can have a life. You're not doing Anyone any favors - your Aspie husband and not yourself. You will end up regretting not having a life. Let your Aspie husband find an Aspie wife. You find a Neurotypical husband. Living with an Aspie husband is living with an abusive husband. Period. Do you want to be a victim of abuse? Get out early.

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    2. Everyone in an Aspie marriage - GET OUT NOW! It never gets better and only gets Worse. You deserve a life, you deserve to be treated well. You are dealing with abuse. Do you want to be a victim of abuse? You do not deserve to be constanting put-down, yelled at, and told it's your problem. That is abuse. GET OUT! Do NOT stay for the children, do not put up fronts, get out while you're young enough to start another life with normalcy, or you will look back and regret you had no life. Period. Let the Aspies marry other Aspies. You go get in a nurturing, caring relationship.

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    3. These two comments turned my stomach. "Get out" - those words should not be tossed around lightly. Go find me someone so-called neurotypical... and say hi to Nessie & Bigfoot while you're there. People are complex, and their situations are complex. I may not be typical, but it doesn't take a genius to know that everyone is unique and complex. Saying "get out" is destructive at best. "Feed your selfishness". Not helpful.

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    4. Well, Jacob just proved our point! Get out! Unless your Aspie really, really tries to make it better, gets therapy, and owns his behavior, get out now. You will suffer- unheard and not not understood. It is very lonely as they are incapable of empathy and appropriate response to your emotions. It's a lot like banging your head against a wall and then wondering why you have a headache.

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    5. Aspies are capable of affective empathy, i.e. once we realise what emotion someone is feeling we will respond. Some may be hyper-empathetic.

      We often have problems with cognitive empathy, i.e. we have to work out what someone's feeling rather than instinctively sensing it. So it helps if someone directly tells what they're feeling rather then relying on us to pick up subtext or body language. Occupational Therapy can help make us work it out quicker, but there'll always be a bit of a lag in response.

      Many of the people who attend the same support groups as me have mentioned that their diagnosis made their relationships with neurotypical partners much happier. Because it enabled *both* of them to comprehend each others ways of thinking. *Both* of the partners made the effort to understand and adapt to the other.

      If your attitude it that it's all the other person's fault and only they should change, then yes, "get out." It'll never work. It's unlikely to work with a neurotypical partner too if that's your attitude.

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    6. "Get out!"? I'm an aspie myself and married to an amazing woman. We both struggle with my cluelessness and difficulty expressing emotion and getting easily overwhelmed and being overly sensitive to criticism etc. But I try very hard to be as good as I can be. I'm on here reading about the problems NTs have with aspie partners so I can learn how to be better. It's a lot of mental gymnastics, but I try very hard to be present and keep analyzing the situation and trying not to miss things, like helping if she's struggling with carrying something or she's busy but the kids are asking her for things I could do, or reminding myself that if she snips at me it doesn't mean she hates me. We've come up with code words that she can use as reminders, like if we're leaving someone's house and I haven't thanked the host she slips in the word "dear" somehow (she never calls me that otherwise but other people don't know that) and that reminds me that my manners need attention. We've both worked on how we communicate with each other and what she needs from me to feel like she's heard and understood. I'm still not great at it but hopefully I'm getting better. She goes out to social events by herself and has good friends she can talk to so that there's less need for me to fill that role. I'm not angry or abusive - it's more my apparent lack of emotion or inappropriate emotional responses that frustrate her. It's hard for both of us but I try to meet her more than half way and work hard at excelling in areas I'm good at - the garden, the bedroom, the kitchen (on days I'm not working), and being the breadwinner. I'm always buying her treats and flowers and giving her massages every week - all the things I *can* do to let her know how in love with her I am. I know it doesn't fully compensate but it's just about doing what I can where I can and not letting a label be an excuse, but rather motivation and guidance. I know I'll never be completely "good enough", and that's really hard, and sometimes I do think she would be better off with an NT partner. Reading "Get out now!" really stings. I just totally feel like giving up now. I know intellectually that that's probably just my aspie overreaction but that still doesn't take the pain and dispair away when I read that. Maybe be a bit more constructive and sensitive in your wording (the advice itself isn't necessarily the issue).

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    7. I feel you Somebody on the Internet. You are doing great, and I am sure your wife feels you love her. Keep on showing her you care. That is the most important. Your wife loves you too. I like the concept of code words.

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    8. Thank you "Somebody on the Internet" for giving me an insight of how a high functioning AS can act in ways to make his NT partner feel loved and appreciated. I am tempted to print out your response and give it to my husband, but he absolutely hates it when I bring up my concern that he should be tested. He hates labels and is unwilling to admit he has many characteristics of an Aspie. I know the NT partner (me) has issues too but I am seeing an counselor for myself, since my husband refuses joint counseling. Would you tell me why my husband would rather have special interest blogs, Facebook, and other social internet sites with other women who are single and about my age? He has at least 4 Facebook accounts, one even has the name of our dog as the user. The other question I have is why he ignores me if we attend a wedding, or go on a vacation? His camera gives him the reason to take photos of people who don't even know it. I feel he is bored with me and doesn't listen to any of my opinions or ideas. I know I am starting to complain, and I hate myself for it, but I need help in understanding my Aspie husband. Thanks again for your wonderful response.

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    9. Hi unknown, I laughed when i read that you wanted to print that comment out! I had the same idea : ) Good on you for seeing councelling yourself, really the only person who you can manage is yourself and the way you deal or react to things. In relation to being ignored in public: i am guessing that he feels like he is not good enough for you and so distances himself, seeing that he socialy cant lash out at you to make himself feel better. He thinks your the best thing that happened to him, remember this. He beats himself up because he can see from you that he cant make you happy. You are not complaining! you are reaching out, I am new to learing about asperges myself,(only figured out he has it recently from doing some internet tests over the past year, and his friends at work telling him they think he has aspergers) we are always trying to learn more about everything in this life. Show him and tell him that you love him and need him. Try to find something that you really like about him and praise away! I know it feels like abuse, but its not meant this way. He feels not understood just as much as you do. God teaches us in His Word (the Bible) to forgive seventy times seven. In other words as often as needs forgiving. I do alot of forgiving and saying sorry for my part in the dissagrement and not often get a sorry back. Its hard but learning more about how he is made and knowing that others are infact going through the same or similar as me, gives me hope and renewed energy for the future. Also Love. Love. Love. Recently my husband has seen a natruopath for his Crohns Disease, (which we are managing through diet and its working but thats another conversation!) she gave him some supplements called BicoZn its basically zinc with vitamin B6 and magnesium in there too. It has made a big difference in his behaviour, much less lashing out at me and the kids. Your relationship may not be the same as your freinds or family's but it can and will work if you want it to and Trust God. This is all easy to say and hard to do, but God always gives me the strength and wisdom I ask for in His perfect time. I feel very blessed to have a driven ; ) husband who is in his way trying to do the best for our family, and 3 beautiful children who deserve to have a Mum and Dad who love eachother and them. There is always hope and learing to do. Wishing you all the very best on your journey xx Leticia.

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    10. Dear All,
      Tears flow as I read your comments. My soul has withered living in an NT-AS marriage for 24 years. I am drained of all life from within. I am exhausted (to say the least) from trying to figure out my husband, from being the social-interpreter for him (because he can be clueless here), from constantly protecting him from everyone who misunderstands his communications and facial expressions, from coaching him for 'normal' (neurotypical) behavior and interactions. I was literally losing my mind, when I came across an internet article titled "Effects of the differing neuro developmental levels" which tells exactly what the issues are. It is a somewhat a relief to know that experiences like mine are documented and studied and that help is available. What I need most now is to find a support group of NTs in my part of the world - India. I am praying I will find one. Please can someone help me to find a support group? God bless you all.

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  6. I can't tell you how helpful that article was! I've been looking ofr information just like that. Thank you so much for posting it!

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  7. Thank you for posting.....helpful

    Still finding myself frustrated with my Aspie Hubby after 20 years....thoroughly exhausting :(

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    1. I know the feeling. Been with my husband 30 years. He seems to be getting worse. Im completely frustrated with him daily. He in in denial with his diagnosis.

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    2. This is an affliction - mental illness and It's more common than I thought after 30 years and surviving an Aspie marriage - without divorce, going to jail; compromising my relationship with the Most High; and creating a happy world of my own -- deserve a ribbon or something - we are all imperfect and have to put up with us as well - but this Aspergers is no joke! it deeply affects marriages in a way that can sometimes feel like emotional abuse -- Denial, pride and being high functioning; successful in his secular world makes the Cassandra syndrome my world- most folks won't believe what our world is like because NT wives help to protect and create a happy front for our families, kids and their families and our spiritual families - They of course have no clue and are just as content as it is - as long as I don't demand basic fundamentals - but I've never been the shut up and take it type of person- and unfortunately thru criticism as a way of fighting back have not made his world easy - so we continue to ride the roller coaster

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    3. This is exactly how I feel. Thank you for sharing this. My husband was diagnosed last year, at the age of 29. We've been together for 6 years. It's been quite the experience.

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    4. So good to be able to talk to people who know how
      I feel...it is such a lonely existence.. HE is my 2nd husband....all ''nice'' at first...dinners..weekends away..Isaw a few mood swings etc....but because he is Diabetic type 1...I put them down to that. There were times when I said the ''wrong thing'' and he got angry..hands at my throat few times...broken dish...food thrown.....Then, when I had my2nd cancer..resulting in a mastectomy/chemo..hair loss etc..HE really changed. Would take me to chemo at the hospital...leave me there...pick me up after...take me home...and leave me to fend for myself. Of course... I have lost all of my libido....(Post menopause..and I take Tamoxifen every day ..only 1 yr to go on it) HE ahs been more withdrawn( if that is possible)because of NO sex..BUT he was never highly sexed anyway!! I can not leave ..this is my home....I have been diagnosed as having a low depression..and will see a Psychologist....I have to learn to be stronger.....WHAT else can I do..?? Please..someone talk to me...

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    5. I feel for you. I too have been married for 17 years of emotional hell. I have not had any physical touch for 10 years, no hugs, kisses, hand holding. I am completely alone in this marriage. No emotional support and raised 2 kids who felt completely rejected because of him. He doesn't support you because they are droids, look like people on the outside but empty on the emotional scale, it just doesn't exist.

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    6. I just found this website and am so thankful. I hope your health is better. So glad you talked about sex. I have no labido and it does cause problems. I try to do something sexual at least every 2 weeks if I feel like it or not. He does treat me better afterwards. Reading romance novels, fantasy about someone else, soft porn helps me. I too have health issues, most related to Cassandra syndrome. He took me to have a rotary cuff surgery, dropped me at door and came 2 hours late to pick me up. I broke both bones in my leg, and he left the next day for a week leaving me to defend for myself. These are minor incidents to what you are going thru. Aspies are so self centered. We only found out a couple of years ago and this helped greatly. It just sucks sometimes. Hang in, Will help if I can.

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    7. I have been married for 17 years to my husband. I now understand that what I have called "socially inappropriate behavior" has a name called Aspergers. It has been complete hell for me and my family. I now understand that his brother and mother also share this diagnosis. The behavior I have been exposed to during our relationship has been devastating and painful. I have come to believe that my husband does not love me, but now I am seeing that he is wired differently and sees life much different than I. I began drinking to be comfortably numb and what he did and said and didn't do didn't hurt so much. I entered AA over a year ago and believed him when he said I was an alcoholic. I thought it would solve all of our problems and no realize that it is multifaceted. I do not know if my husband will be willing to accept this diagnosis, but I will hang in there and go to marital counseling and counseling for my son who has ADHD and possible aspergers. God bless to all who live in this situation.

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    9. Wait until you've been married to someone like that for 40 years. I am just so tired of having to think and do everything. No emotional connection, no support, no logical thinking or if so extremely slow, constant clingy husband. Slow and gets everything wrong, total self-denial and manipulates you with empty sweet nothing words that are actually meant to keep you on a constant guilt trip. Has OCD and TLE as well. Nobody understands and thinks I'm the problem. Today I know I'm not. Got told my husband has Asperger's or high end functioning Austism about 2 months ago. Tired of having Christians tell me to love unconditionally and I just have to suck it up without receiving any caring love myself. I've had it. Worst of all he can't even financially support himself. I really feel sucked dry and don't know if I can ever live a normal life...

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    10. I totally understand on the Christians telling you to love unconditionally. What passive bullshit. It is much better to understand his affliction for what it is, rather than to just "keep loving".

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    11. I have only had 28yrs with an aspie. You said u went to AA. I had gone to Alanon for years when I was married to an alcoholic and their mtgs. Literature and support have helped me with this aspie marriage. I also am alcoholic and AA is completely different program from AA. Would be great if those living with an aspie. had mtg. I hope you know that you are not alone, I care about what u r going thru. It is hard taking time for yourself is the hardest thing to do. Learn about Csandra syndrome. I and you are not the crazy ones. Knowing that I am not crazy helped me a lot. Do what you need to do for you.

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  8. Sending hugs to all dealing with an aspergers spouse. It was like emotional abandonment and verbal abuse for 19 years with denial on their part and receiving the constant reminder that we are the one with "emotional problems". One doesn't realize the toll it takes until they are out of it. Everyone makes a different choice for themselves and their relationships. Even just focusing on the positive may not be enough. Aspergers behavior finally resulted in divorce. Indirectly, I received what I needed for my emotional and physical well-being. Yes, ongoing stress can manifest itself in physical ailments. Life is amazing, even my kids have done better emotionally & academically since not living in the dysfunctional environment that unfortunately occurred.

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  9. I have been married to a man with Aspergers for 32 years! It's only been two years since we discovered this. For the entire duration of our marriage, until recently, I blamed myself for everything. I blamed myself for not being pretty enough; after all if I were he would be attracted to me, and would be affectionate....so I thought. And I blamed myself for not being interesting or smart enough; had I been he would communicate with me. I've been pained with such guilt feelings because rather than appreciating his good qualities, I wanted a marriage like my parents. I wanted a marriage like my friends have. So guilt is all I've known. But I realize now that all I asked for was the same "normal" marriage that every woman seeks and expects when finding a mate. It has been emotionally and physically draining being married to him. My health has suffered greatly from it. It takes me to such a sad place when I think how I spent all of my youth waiting for him to change; never realizing his ways will never change. It's been lonely for me. But although the road has been long and arduous, and I question if I even love him anymore, I won't leave him. My new journey now is to learn how to find happiness in this mother-child relationship. I need to desperately focus on his good qualities rather than dwell on what is missing. It's going to be very challenging, but I've made up my mind to fight for this with all I have.

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  10. This list is helpful, but if you are married to an aspie who refuses to even see that there's something wrong with him, it is absolutely exhausting. There are many many days where I simply want to walk away from the constant complaining, criticism and paranoia. My question still remains, if I am constantly working around my aspie, where's peace and love? Emotionally, physically, socially, I am exhausted.

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    1. I can totally relate to this 100 % my boyfriend is EXACTLY like this he admits that he has a condition but he wont educate himself about it and is constantly blaming me for everything that goes wrong and hes full of such negativity its as if hes afraid to be happy. And then there's the meltdowns with the name calling and the threats I have never felt so worthless and unappreciated in my life how can you treat a woman you supposedly love with complete disregard for her feelings then when I express my feelings to him he mocks me. Reaching my breaking point .....I do love him and I have been going to therapy to cope and im willing to teach him but he refuses to even talk to me about it....

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    2. At least you are not trapped by marriage. If it were me, Id move on. Its a lonely life.

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    3. I would also leave. It will be much easier. It gets so much worse once you get married.

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    4. Yes, if not married- leave and find a relationship with someone healthy who can love you back. Unless you want to be in a dysfunctional, loveless, sexless, almost communication-less marriage where you are looked at and treated like a piece of the furniture- they can't help it, but YOU CAN help yourself. They do not need a relationship like you need one. They are happy as roommates.

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    5. I have to sadly concur. I recently got back together with a college sweetheart & I had no idea, nor did his family, for over 40 years that he was AS. Everyone just thought he was on drugs(?) Acting so odd because he was so brilliant & a fabulous musician!
      But there is no romance, we are best friends & I will always take care of him.I had 15 years married to a man I adored who died. Having an Aspie companion at 60 is fine, 20-40? NOT SO MUCH.

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  11. I'm separated from my in denial asperger husband. Love him with all my heart and spent 20 years wondering why he couldn't kiss me properly have empathy etc. thought he was gay or affairs but no he's been diagnosed with aspergers but refuses to discuss. He promised me before we got married he would change become intimate but never did. He hates any form conflict. So sad, lovely guy great dad but totally and utterly selfish. Won't put himself out if it affects his routine at all, even when I had Mrsa he wouldn't go work late as affected his routine so my mum had kids. Suspect his mum got it. So sad I was a mum to him all my married life...never a wife. We not divorced but I can't go back rejection ever I nearly had breakdown.

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    1. Curious, if he is totally selfish, in what ways is he a great dad?

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    2. I say my husband is "great" too but it's just really fleeting and surface discussions, nothing deep and my taking care of him and everything else has just worn me out. I can't even consider another argument or discussion that goes nowhere. I find the resentment building and building. I fear I won't even want him as a friend is this keeps up. I get the selfish comment, whether it's intentional or not, doesn't make it ANY easier. How did you get out? I've spent our whole marriage protecting him and now I'm going to be the villain b/c no one really knows him. He has no real friends and can go days, weeks, months w/o intimacy of any kind. I mean not even your basic married talks, just his rants or "areas of focus". I will try to tell him something and I feel so degraded that after a dozen interruptions only then do I realize he has no interest in what I have to say. He can be so nice but he can be passively vicious too. It's all I've known, now I just want time to heal, time away. If he won't acknowledge it, if he just focusses on winning every discussion than what's the point when it's truly killing me? How do I get out, I don't want to hurt him, I just want time, I really am scared but I think I want out once and for all. Advice greatly appreciated as I have no support in place.

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  12. I'm with an aspergers man now for 13years, married for 8 . It's my 3rd husband and I loved his gentleness after an abusive previous marriage. I'm now 69 so no chance of leaving as anyway I'm the beadwinner and he couldn't manage alone. He's an alcoholic which bothers me more than the the aspergers. I work really hard all day but in the evening I have no companionship. I think he loves me but I don't think I do any more. I didn't know he had it even though I raised his son for 10 years . His son is now living on his own in UK but in charge of the state. My husband has worked and still does a bit . I mistook his engineering ability and his past history of the hospitality industry to mean he was whole. I gradually started to see his complete dependence on me for most things and his jealousy of my friends as he has none.im afraid I do run him down but mostly because of the drinking .

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  13. My partner doesnt usually answer me when we talk unless I ask a question, so we dont have chatty conversations, only when we debate an issue on the news. We go hours without chatting much, its like living in a monastery. Could this be due to aspergers?

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    1. Yes it can. I was with my ex for 13 years and I thought the problem was me as he constantly criticised nitpicked and moaned. He didn't show me any love or affection only spoke to moan. I left in the end as I was emotionally mentally and physically exhausted from the relationship. I only know now that it was him with the disability of Aspergers. x

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  14. I just want to know how you got your aspie to marry you. I've been with my BF for 10 years now (we don't live together) and he still isn't wild about marriage. He says that it is out of his comfort zone and makes him so nervous esp all the change that it would bring about. So any tips and advice would be great!!

    Thanks!

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    1. It will only get worse, then you will be exhausted & frustrated like all these ladies. If you think you can be the one to love him like no one else, you might be right, but you are forfeiting your opportunity to really live and it's almost impossible to not resent him later. Be his friend, if you must. Just know that he will not be able to grow with you & loneliness will set in & he won't be able to care.

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    2. Also, having children with an aspergers man can drive you insane. Children need a dad who will have a relationship with them & care about them. It is more than extremely difficult.

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    3. Pam this has really struck a chord with me I have left my partner as I couldn't stand his cold and distant moaning criticising pompousness any longer. Now our 11 year old refuses to see his dad as he says he is an empty android (his words not mine). I have been overly careful not to call his dad in front of him so he has made up his mind himself. Of course no matter how many times I have told his dad I am not stopping him from seeing his son he won't listen ( nothing new).

      My ex said when I asked could I have some child maintenance upfront to pay for a house "no as he might not live until he is 16" and he thought this was normal and it was me overreacting.

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    4. They don't listen and I'm sick as I start to realize this is never going to change, they just can't and you just need to be grateful you had the courage to get out sooner.

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    5. Get out as soon as you can! Don't marry him.

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    6. You can't be serious. How can you read all these women talking about their sad, lonely, empty marriages and want to bring that on yourself? I've cried so hard that I threw up- so many times. God help you. I pray he never says yes.

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  15. Thank you for posting and for all the comments I have read. I suspect my husband has aspergers and in a way the thought of a diagnosis would be a relief for me. I am exhausted after 11 years and I am not sure what the future will hold for us it is almost like I'm being asked to sacrifice myself because he cant be any different. Im not sure that compromise is worth it as I get the feeling life wont get any better and a diagnosis will just validate his behaviour. Its almost like the ultimate trade off my happiness or his?

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    1. Couldn't have said it any better myself. You are trading your happiness for his, you must save yourself before you become like the rest of us, feeling so trapped. They don't seem to be able to be any different, it's like living with a different species altogether, just don't know how I let it get this bad. I'm suffering so much and feel so hopeless. I mad at myself for letting this man take my life from me. How could I give up so much control? It just seemed to painful to fight him, he was always right and I believed I was crazy and wrong then I didn't want to hurt him and still don't, but do I have to sacrifice any hope of happiness for more of the same? I'd just settle for a simple and peaceful life, and pray happiness will come my way one day.

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    2. Hay Guys, I don't know what your aspy partner is like but I have lived in a world of violence since I was 5 in one form or another. Left my last partner of 20years because he threatened to shoot me. Now live with a very dear friend I know at 12 who is very aspy. Not much is normal and there are areas in my life that he will never be able to fill. But if I sit back and look at him he is kind, caring in his own way(i do have to steal cuddles) yes I have to ask if I want something, but in his own funny way he has my best interest at heart. I love his quirky ways and hair brained ideas. I have friends that fill the gaps that he leaves unfilled, coffee and a good chat.

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    3. I am the 3rd wife of an Aspie classical musician.

      Although my husband will never admit he is affected by this syndrome the lightbulb came on when our granddaughter was sent to occupational therapy for her Aspie behavior (hand flapping, grimacing, self-mutilation at 4 yrs. old) It all SUDDENLY clicked.

      When we met my husband seemed so calm (LOL - passive aggressive, I now realize); so many quirky non-caring things have happened; like the time he left me behind at Nordstrom's while he drove home without me; will not respond to any comment I make unless its a direct question (says "your comments don't merit a response -- ask a question if you want a response.")

      Because he's a professor he thinks he's smart about everything -- except remembering my birthday, of course.

      He is PERFECTLY happy in this marriage because he has NO needs - none whatsoever (except to be agreed with and then left alone) - which leaves me 80% intellectually, emotionally, sexually lonely.

      Yes, I'm in therapy -- if you're married to an Aspie, you probably should be too.

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    4. OMG, you nailed it, mine has absolutely zero needs either so he is happy as I take care of everything - but myself. Needs to be agreed with & left alone too unless he doesn't & then I'm there just needing a moment of pretending it's me he wants. It's not me it's what I can do for him. I can't find an Aspie therapist, they all claim they treat & diagnose it but they don't it's just business/$ in their pocket. I have to get the therapist right or there will be nothing left for me. He doesn't hit me, he just neglects me in the most profound ways and I'm beginning to hate him and all I do is seethe resentment . Oh my is also super laid back, lol here too, the most passive aggressive person I've ever known. How and why do they change from the start and just get more and more rigid and symptomatic? My husband had friends, we were active and then he kept screwing up professionally (of course it's never his fault) and I find I'm now a prisoner of this Aspie world that I never signed up for. I'm different, I'm depressed, hopeless, paralyzed to inaction like it's just easier to stay because I'm too tired to move. How pathetic is that? What do I do, how do I start to get myself well? I want him to move out so badly, I need the time, a break so I can think straight, breathe and get a life going again. Maybe I can regain some health as the stress is eating me alive. Advice & thanks for your dead on post, mine is above me as well, he is a legend in his own mind!

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    5. Suzanne, as I read your story, I got goose bumps. Yes, yes and yes!

      In the 4th year of our marriage, I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder. From the beginning of our marriage, My husband always accused me that I was irrational, inconsistent, getting mad for no reason, always complaining, never got satisfied, and illogical. I gradually got to think that I was not capable, stupid, worthless, trapped, always complaining, and finally thought that I was ruining his life.
      Battle with depression for years, I realized that it was not me. But still didn't know "what in the world going in with my marriage.

      When my son got diagnosed with high functioning autism, it clicked me just like what you said. All those despair, loneliness, talking to the wall, it explained everything. Many of his family members also have tics, sensory issues and control issues. His family didn't seem to take no to an answer. My husband's childhood stories were identical with those on 'understanding aspie child tutorial' type of book. My child's Doctor is pretty much convinced that my husband has aspergers and actually it's highly likely from his family.

      He refuses to get a diagnosis arguing that he has all the good things of aspergers and nothing from the bad, therefore he is not aspergers.

      We recently sought professional help to solve our marital issues.
      When he individually met the counsellor at the very beginning, his descriptions of me were,
      1. Complaint
      2. Angry for no reason
      3. Unpredictable
      4. Depressive
      5. Blaming him for everything, although he didn't do anything wrong
      6. He is a trash can of my emotional distress
      7. Nothing's gonna satisfy me because he tries and tries but I am still mad
      8. Illogical
      9. Irrational
      10. Inconsistent
      11. Hysterical
      12. Demanding unrealistic, impossible things to him
      ......go on and on.
      After the counsellor heard him, she said 'your wife sounded like narssistic and having boarder line personality disorder.' Of course, according to his description, I am such and such.
      The counsellor later on find out our real issues but he was so preoccupied with the belief that his wife is boarder line and he is the most pitiful but generous caring husband in the world.

      I should move on...
      I am just so tired and it kills me. I feel so empty. Oh, one of his other description of me was 'she is feeling empty and lonely all the time no matter how hard he tries'.

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    6. OMG- I laughed & cried with you. My scenario is odd in that I divorced the man I live w/now 38 yEARs ago...went on to have a wonderful, ENFP/INFJ marriage for 15 yrs ending when he died/heart attack@ 54 years. old, 2004. In 2009, my ex with whom I had maintained a friendship, reunited. HE IS EXACTLY THE SAME AS HE WAS AT 19! WE have the same arguments...it took me 2 years & two degrees to figure what his Engineer , adminstrative, therapist laden family denies: Aspie to da max.
      You cannot change, coerce, manipulate, cajole, or in other words: HE IS WHAT HE IS.
      I am glad I had my sweetheart for 15 years. I have children & grandchildren. I have also been given the responsibility of encouraging, protecting, and serving in humility. Every issue I have with him involves only my own ego & self. The Aspies ARE just fine. I am becoming more by not being affected by the construct of my own imagination. If you don't DECIDE to take offense, you don't.
      My dad had severe dementia. This is similar in that I feel the adult or responsible one but my Aspie has loved me almost all of his life, 63 years old & still the most beautiful man I have ever seen. I am figuring it out finally.

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  16. I relate so much to many of you as I am married over 25 years to Aspie man and I am exhausted, depleted, lonely and I fear my resentment will not abate. I have always gotten the counseling and been the one he blames yet he is a textbook case and in total denial. "Askmollybeauty", you just described my husband, but I'm just broken and fear I can't do it anymore and he claims he wants to be w/me but just fights to win (what?), I too describe him as utterly selfish and he used to be a good Dad but not anymore so much. Kids are grown and it's just either me trying not to talk, him interrupting and seeking me for whatever HIS needs are and no talking other than what TV show to watch. I've watched our friends solely go away and I'm tiring of this life. I can't believe all of these women believe we should continue being sick and sad forever. I too am sick and it's time for someone to show me empathy and support. I feel like I'll always be his mother and so many of the wives are sick, has to be connected. My husband is of little to no support on that front either, the loneliness and building resentment is unbearable. I think it's wrong to tell us we should stay, this is our life, they can't help it, etc. I'd rather be alone than feel alone w/a man that takes no responsibility and just piles it on me. He left me alone through serious illness & has no friends & as a result I'm losing mine too. No one is comfortable around him & all he wants to do is blame me and make no changes. I can't imagine never knowing what it is to live w/o all of this stress and oddly, I want that for him too. Why don't they admit they would rather be alone, is it the change b/c he can go so long w/o noticing me, of course that is unless HE needs or wants something. If you aren't married yet, run, it will destroy you, they can't cope w/anything and you are always wrong and they are reclusive and lack all introspection and empathy except on the rarest of occasions. I'm scared, but I really think this time I'm done. I just wish he could let us be friends, maybe more, just can't live w/it day in and day out. I wish you all so much happiness and support.

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    1. Not all Aspies are the same, just as not all NTs are the same. So, although I'm sure you are dealing with an unimaginable hell, it's not exactly fair to lay down the blanket statement of "run" (just as it's not fair to lay down a blanket statement of "stay"). To anyone struggling it will never be easy, but if you see hope, if you see a flicker of willingness to change and learn, if you truly love your partner and seek help and knowledge, it's possible. But yes, by all means, take care of yourself! Recognize it is not your job to " fix" or mother your partner. They do have to learn to self soothe, and so do you.

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    2. To anyone struggling it will never be easy, but if you see hope, if you see a flicker of willingness to change and learn, if you truly love your partner and seek help and knowledge, it's possible. These words I took to heart, i have read so many of the comments, the struggles, man I feel so grateful that thought it has taken me this long to finally discover the underlying problem I do love him, and yes it's hard to admit that sometimes, but "Love is where self is not". He is someone who I enjoy being around, there are times when he's able to come into himself, they are rare but I've seen them. I love his clumsy nature, I call him my big ol bear, sure we stopped having sex, for now, I think that even if it doesn't make it back to what it once was, (which was not great or even close) I still loved laying beside him and feeling like I didn't have to worry about what he was thinking, because he wasn't about me". Took the pressure off I guess. The sudden disappearances I now use to replenish my teens and myself, we live with 15 animals, he loves animals so I look after them for him, he doesn't have the capacity to organize them and dogs need consistency. He is a disorganized mess. But he has a way about him that I feel completes me. I tried to run from the whole thing many times but felt that it was only me I was running from. I decided that if he has some sort of mental illness then it should be easy for me to just work around it. His behaviour is totally unpredictable but life is that way and I find it somewhat exciting, especially because I was raised by a bi-polar mother. I don't think I can ever understand the illness but I ask myself, "Do I want to be a victim"? No, if I am the one who is supposedly sane then this should be a lot easier". I changed the way I looked at things, and when I'd think of how I cope with his behaviour, I think of how I must look to him, always complaining about why he disappears, (He says, "You know where I am") It wouldn't make a difference if I went and dragged him home because he wouldn't come no matter what kind of temper tantrum I threw. I decided I wasn't going to become ill because of him! I have the choice and that choice I have stuck with. I don't care that he doesn't touch me, I take his hand when I feel so inclined, I had a cat that ignored me and I her for most part of her life, now she cuddles with me? Who'd of know? Yes he has left me at stores, one time, we were on vacation and I was waiting on the corner of a very busy street and finally way down the street I see our suv coming my way, behind it was two bicycle cops, trying to keep up to him and pull him over, banging on the side window, when he finally stopped it was only because he saw me on the corner, so he stopped and I swear that cop would have ripped him out of his seat and had him on the ground. Later I found out that they had been following him up hill for several blocks trying to get his attention! His only response was, "They were on bikes, who was I supposed to think they were? After examining closely the situation, I believe that when I react to him, knowing full well he is way different then me, everything I learned I had to throw out the door and now, I realize that love is not pleasure, love is much more that sex, love does not contain the letter "I". I am worth it, not him, I am worth having a good life a peaceful life, and I know that no matter who I am with I am always present, I make the choice how I feel and how I will react.

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  17. Wow Rookie, I am in the same boat as you are. I will be married 26 years next month and I have been struggling with physical ailments that I am sure can be contributed in part to the stress that I feel being married to someone that I am quite positive has aspergers. I too feel lonely now that my children are grown. I have contemplated leaving for many years, but have never gotten up the courage to do so. It is extremely difficult living in this mother-child relationship, with a husband who at times is more like a 4 year old. I am tired of him not taking responsibility for any of our problems. Our conversations are either very shallow or end up in an argument. I, too, don't feel like I have support as most everyone thinks I should stick it out, even those who know him very well and realize that he is "wired" very differently. Even another guy that has tried to be friends with my husband says that my husband is "socially challenged." I am thankful that I finally have people in my life that see the issues especially since I thought for years that it was just me and that I was going crazy. Well, I hope we both figure out what we need to do to make our difficult days better.

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    1. My spouse refuses to get help. "This is the way I am, therapy won't help". I don't want to live this way anymore, it's tiring and so stressful.

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    2. I am also in the same boat, lonely in marriage. Despite knowing why he appears disinterested in me, things I do, things which are important to me, and I dont consciously expect him to be, I am still caught out by my neuro typical emotions and am hurt, upset etc on numerous occasions. ANYONE GOT ANY SUGGESTIONS AS TO HoW TO PREVENT THis?

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    3. Get out of the house, join the gym, volunteer, go to places you have never been to before. Before you totally give up on what you have go find out what is out there. Take a deep breath put a smile on your dile and give it a go. Then see if you can live in the two worlds or do you need to choose one. I rather like an insane side of my life.

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  18. I was originally drawn to my husband because he was a math whiz. He knew everything about computers and could fix anything that broke. He had a sweet and quiet nature with handsome angelic looks. We dated for four years and at the time he did not own his own practice. He seemed to have a gentle strength. I was a single mom who had been married to a narcissist so a humble not so experienced man seemed just perfect. What I failed to really understand at the time was the following. He had no meaningful friendships. He never took the initiative to connect with people. He did excellent in school but had no social IQ,He never asked me questions that had any personal depth. After 4 years of dating I had to ask him what his intentions were because I did not want to continue to date him forever. Since we never lived together prior to marriage I only saw the good qualities he could bring for a visit or a weekend where he could then go to his home and lose himself in his computer. After 13 years of marriage I finally figured out that he had Aspergers. I spent so many lonely evenings crying in the shower. I thought I wasn't pretty enough because he never complimented me. I thought I couldn't cook good enough because I never got oohs and ahhs. At one point I thought he could be homosexual because he was only interested in sex about every 6-8 weeks. Even when holding him in an embrace i never felt like I could ever really reach into his heart. All in all, I became a bitchy, tired, mother to my husband. I started to point out that he was detached, not a team player. I told him he needed to help in the house and spend time with our kids. I started to tell him where he was falling short. The more I complained the more frustrated and angry I became the more he shut down and refused to interact until one day after having had an accident that landed him in the hospital, shortly after that he just walked out. He stated that he no longer loved me and wanted to be alone. I feel like I gave up so many years helping him in his practice, being responsible for the home and all in it. Losing myself in the process and never feeling any sort of appreciation or empathy for anything I might have experienced in life with him. If I had known and understood earlier perhaps we could have made it. So remember if you are in a marriage with an aspie and you are frustrated beyond hope stop criticizing it will go no where. Get help from a professional who deals with Aspergers and nothing less as many councelors do not know how to treat. If you are dating seriously think twice before getting married. You will never achieve complete relationship the way you hope for as sweet as they seem at first. My aspie is divorcing me and in many ways that makes me sad as I would have stayed if he sought help. Truly being without him feels no different than when we where married. Yes I miss the good I remember but I would rather be alone with the kids than married in our home with the illusion of a marriage. Sad to report the kids state they wouldn't want him back in the house and that they are more comfortable living without him.

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  19. I recently knew my husband is Aspergers from our marriage counselor. Right, now I am struggling what is the good timing to let my husband know about it. The counselor said she had to build up enough trust with my husband then she will let him know. But my friend who's son is also a Aspergers suggests to let him know soon. Otherwise his behavior may affect my 2.5 years old daughter's development.
    I totally feel your posts. I've been married for 6 years. I was a very positive person but now depressed. I thought everything is my fault until I learned about my husband's situation last week. Ive read many articles and tried to think and act differently. But it's so so hard......Why a really nice man become a hardest communicate person?? Can we get him back to the sweet person like we met before?????

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  20. I think you just don't recognise the signs until you are too far in, and for many of us, getting the diagnosis is a huge relief. Whilst it helps to understand that it's s not us imagining things, we still have to find a way of coping. If you still love him, that is easier than if you have stopped. The books tell us neurotypicals to remain energised in order to cope. When you are down, worn down with coping, you think why should it be me making the effort, why can't he be the one who energises me, why should I go elsewhere for that! If you can manage the juggling act, it can work, but no-one is going to tell you it's easy. You have to weigh up the pros and cons, but there will still be times when you are caught out by your emotions. Sometimes the positives of the relationship cannot cover up what is lacking, and those are the very difficult times when you need to be with people, do things, go places, that will energise you enough to keep going, but only if you want to x

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  21. I think my soon to be x has Asperger's. I cannot tell if he is or he has narc. personality disorder. He is very selfcentered. Never notices me and if I should need something when it is not in timing with what he is doing he would have a tantrum which included swearing, calling me names, punching his head, and jumping on the floor and banging his head sme more. He had ) empathy and really seemed to like ti if I was really sad bc of our marriage. I did everything for him and he got very pompous bc he did do better with my help. He has been fired from many jobs bc he just treats people terribly. If anyone wants anything he would say they were micromanaging him. After 3 years total and only 12 months of marriage I am out. It was awful. I as lift feeling so depressed and beaten down. Not the person I was just three years ago. Anyone with any advice if he is a true aspie or just an abusive guy. it wold help with closing this chapter.

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  22. I just wanted to say thank you so much for doing this for me and many others. At the beginning of the break up I felt like I would never love again and that my life has ended. Thanks to all your advice, I now have the courage to face every new day. My heart has healed tremendously and I feel like I can now really move on. If it wasn’t for your words then I would probably still be in that dark place of my life. Thank you, thank you!” drlawrencespelltemple@hotmail.com

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  23. I only recently realized my husband of 21 years has Asberger's. It has helped me to see why he's always been completely neglectful of me and self-involved, obsessive with his many hobbies - but never time nor communication with me and our two non-Aspie kids, whom I raised almost entirely alone. I want out but I dont' know how. Please share how you divorced these men - mine will be angry and take everything I have. Any help on what to say or how to deal with someone that has no concern for his wife's feelings? He always believes he's in the right. Thank you.

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  24. Thank you all for sharing your experience. I would like to ask you one thing (I’m a foreigner, so sorry for any mistake I may make).
    I’m about to marry a man I believe has Aspergers (I only discovered it few months ago, a real shock for me). I cried my eyes out, but now I need to think straight before the most important decision of my life (our wedding is planned in 1.5 months).
    I always knew he’s different, especially with people, but I thought no one is perfect and that he’s a programmer, so it’s normal. But I’ve always felt aside him, not “with” him. Often his odd way of thinking, lack of knowledge about everyday things and indifferent attitude for some people (he doesn’t like some of my friends, but some of them he likes; he doesn’t have any real friends of his own) disturbed me, and I often felt embarrassed with his lack of “normal intelligence” and lack of normal human skills while we met my friends or his family (often he says nothing at all, not even a word).
    But with me he’s so different – he’s very caring and sweet, always supporting me, organizing many things for me, smiling, taking well care of practical things (paying the bills, saving money for home, repairing things) and I feel I can trust him and rely on him and that he’s always there for me, like no one was before. Even emotionally – even if he doesn’t’ catch “emotional” issues of other people, he sees and hears it in my voice that something is wrong or that I’m pleased. So this is something that doesn’t suit me for an aspergers.. Do you think he will change once we’re married and moved in together? Did you have such experiences?
    I think his dad can have aspergers too, he’s got no facial expressions, during 4 years I’ve known his son we talked maybe 4 times even though I was quite an often guest in their house, he’s always so uninterested, sleep in a different room that his wife. My fiancé’s mom who’s a nice person and very pretty woman, told me once that after getting married she was disappointed with her marriage because her husband didn’t compliment her, forget about her birthday etc. Frankly, when we’re somewhere together in his family I don’t see any bond between them as a married couple (my parents are happy together and you can see they love each other just by looking at them). Whereas when you enter my fiancé’s home is like entering a fridge. My fiancé says he doesn’t want to be this way in his own home, but I’m afraid he will be no different just because he was born this way. And it really scares me, especially the vision of him as a father. He wants to have children, he often says that he can’t wait to go camping with them or doing sport with them but I can’t imagine how we’ll bond with them as he’s not able to bond to other people, to even talk to them normally.. And children are small people who won’t make a conversation for him and won’t tell about their feelings like adults, like me.
    I sometimes feel lonely, but I’ve always thought it’s because my expectations are too high, maybe any man can’t give us what we expect on emotional level.. I also observed physical symptoms from some time – I lost weight, have often hard headaches and doesn’t have the same energy as I used to have (and I was a very active, open person).
    Maybe there’s a different degree of aspergers and my fiancés case is not so bad..
    So to sum up, did your partners change after marriage? He's so good to me now and cares about me, but many of you says it's different after being married..
    Thank you for all your comments.

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    1. Hi. Not sure which route you followed but just a little hope, I've been married to my aspie husband for seven years now and yes we've had some dreadful times but at the same timei do believe there are different degrees of aspergers. I find if I ask him directly for hugs or tell him I'm upset he is able to respond well. And I know he genuinely cares.

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  25. It gets worse after you are married. You are already feeling embarrassed by his behaviour, you are experiencing psychosomatic symptoms of stress - you can postpone a wedding if you need more time to be sure. I hope you make the right decision for you x

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  26. Thank you Jumpygran, I read all the stories there but it's still really hard for me to believe it. And I love him. How will I leave the good and sweet person while he's still being good and sweet to me. It would might be easier if I saw another side of him and feel how it is..

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    1. I replied to you earlier, but I don't see it posted yet. Anyway, if you really don't think you can leave, can you at least postpone the wedding? I don't know what excuse you could give??? My very strong suggestion though, if you do go through with it, please do not have children right away. Wait several years, I am begging you. If you don't have children it will be much easier to get out if you need to.

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  27. Thank you unhappy. Unfortunately, I don't have few years to wait before I have kids. What i want to do now is to get a diagnosis, and first talk to his mom who doesn't even suppose her son (and husband) might have aspergers. It will be hard for her and i wouldn't like to turn her life upside down, but it's just too important for me to not do it. And then, i don't know. I'm not ready for all the suffering that this conversation and this diagnosis i want to get from a psychiatrist could bring. But anyway, thank you for your support.

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    1. JUst to let you know..if you have children with an Aspbergers man....there is a good chance of your children having the same problem...and or ADHD..or...Autism

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  28. So I talked to my fiance's mom - she denied that some of her son behaviors may be caused by aspergers, telling me at the same time his husband (my fiance's father) doesn't know and notice when she's sad, doesn't respond to when she speaks, forgets about her birthday and when he's angry with her "he could have not spoke to her for months" (literal quote). If it's not aspergers, what is? She said - men are just like that, you need to tell them everything. and i'm feeling as if I were just imaging things..

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    1. You are not imaginining things, but his mom is probably feeling like this means her child (and husband) is broken and in some way blaming herself. If you love him, and he has a higher level of empathy and affection, you can absolutely work through difficulties. I just started reading the book Loving Someone with Asperger's (author's last name is Ariel) and it's a wonderful resource! Do not hesitate to go to counseling as a couple as soon as difficulties arise. Also, my husband and I have two young children (both a surprise) and he is a wonderful, affectionate, and devoted father, just not always perfect. Also, the early months with a newborn are a very difficult transition for anyone, but especially someone with AS, just be prepared and have a support system other than him (but I bet he will be the best at making sure you have food and supplies and that the baby is burped and changed on schedule!). The fact that he sees how his father is and wants different is a true blessing because he has perspective! Don't throw in the towel necessarily (if you are still together), but do go in with your eyes wide open and with a strategy for taking care of you. I wish you both much luck and happiness!

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  29. I have been with my husband for 18 years. I don't know if he has Aspergers, but so many things that people are saying here ring true. I can see myself in almost every comment. He doesn't exhibit every symptom that is discussed here, and I don't know what really constitutes this spectrum. I mentioned the possibility to him, hoping it could illuminate our ongoing connection problem, but he seems to have no interest in looking into it. I feel very lonely, especially when I'm with him. I do think he loves me, but seems very uninterested in me and especially in my feelings. He does like physical affection and it sometimes seems like sex is the closest we come to connecting. He does not make eye contact very much. He also doesn't have close friends and I feel like I'm holding up all of our social connections. He doesn't criticize me like others mention, or rant or get fixated. It is more that he ignores me deeply. Sometimes after exhausting and tearful pleas from me in which I spell out my needs exactly, he will make an effort to say nice things to me and engage with me more, but it does not naturally occur. He does like to cuddle with our kids and he spends time with them and to me he is committed and consistent, as another said, I feel like we are alongside each other not together. But when I think back to the beginning of our relationship, I feel that he was way more connected and interested….
    Thank you. Just trying to figure this out.

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  30. I have been married to my "Asperger's" husband for 39 years. I have known that he is different for a long, long time, and yet I fell in love with him. So I ask myself why. As I look back, I remember that I found him intelligent, fun, physically attractive, sporty and gentle. He is a first rate mathematician (Actuary) and he has been a great provider for myself and our two boys. We have shared interests in travel, history, philosophy, politics and music (classical). Many of my friends see us as a perfect couple. We never quarrel violently, have always had a regular sexual relationship and he doesn’t have any difficult behaviours such as gambling, drinking or womanising. We hold hands when we walk or when we sit watching TV and are generally very companionable with each other.
    You might wonder whether I find any problems with our long-term relationship.
    Well, yes I do!
    The hardest part is wondering if he loves me. He has never once said that he did. If I ask him if he loves me, he says “of course I do”. He never buys my birthday, Christmas or Mother’s Day presents. I buy them myself with money that he has allocated out of our budget (budgeting is very important for him). He has never given me a spontaneous gift and he never spontaneously helps me around the house. I find this very hard at times.
    He has a strong need to been in control of whatever is going on in his life. I like driving our car, but always let him drive because if I drive, he gets incredibly tense. Also, I let him control our finances - he is not mean with our money, but he is never generous and everything has to be rationally thought through. I sometimes find this very restricting and irritating and in the past our most common topic of argument has been about the allocation of budget money.
    Our first son was hyperactive, probably had ADHD, Asperger’s etc, had great trouble socializing at school and was bullied. As a result, he became unhappy at home and his anger became very difficult to manage. My husband barely noticed. He left all the discipline to me and at times I felt very lonely and abandoned. I became depressed and I began to verbally attack my husband, saying why don’t you do this or why don’t you do that. He barely responded and I don’t think he had any idea what I was going through. Eventually, he could no longer cope with the verbal attacks and said he thought we should separate. I felt I was going to pieces emotionally and went to my doctor to seek help. She prescribed anti-depressants plus gave me good psychological support, and after a while I began to deal more competently with my son and stopped attacking my husband. It was (and still is) very hard “getting through to my husband”, and I have had to learn how to express what I feel in a logical and non-emotional manner. I think we have both gained experience in communicating with each other.
    So after 39 years of marriage to an Asperger’s person, am I happy? Most of the time, yes, and occasionally, no and sometimes I feel lonely. I love him for his personality, but also because he gives me “space”. He is not an intrusive personality, and this is important to me. Also, he is extremely honest and reliable, great traits in a husband!
    I ask myself – what is love? And I can’t come up with an answer. Perhaps it’s a Western construct! Perhaps it’s enough to be content, happy, and just occasionally dissatisfied. After all, it isn’t only Asperger’s couples who have trouble with marriage!

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  31. I am so thankful that I found this site! One of my volunteers is aspie and 23 years old. I am a 44 year old single single woman, who looks 36. I wondered why he was trying to flirt with me in an akward way, and make comments about how pretty I look and about "cougars. I believe that he's looking for a mother figure, and although I am tempted to be flattered, I can't allow myself to be sucked into the void of everlasting issues with him. Besides, a 21 year difference is rather gross.

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  32. I am so thankful to have found this article. I have been with my husband for 7 years total married for 2. It has been very rocky for alot of reasons. Some of them mine honestly but I have clearly turned myself inside out changing whatever I can trying to please him over the last 7 years until I finally had to start back counseling a month ago by myself. We had been to marriage counseling a few years ago and I wouldn't go back back with him because he blames everything on me and nothing every changed. He has picked me apart constantly, watches my facial expressions, tells me how I am feeling, we go thru this yo yo pattern and then he isolates me, and ignores me never showing empathy or compassion, it's just a carbon copy of so many of the posts above. He has no friends and he has actually destroyed one very dear friendship I had for over 30 years when she defended me against one of his tyrades. I have left him twice and he has begged me to return, so I did........When I told him about my counselors diagnosis, he made an appointment with his counselor, but over the weekend, he went right back to blaming me for all of our problems and now we are right back to him ignoring and isolating me. I will no longer talk to my friends about it because I will not allow him to come between and cause me to lose any more of my friendships just because he has none. Thanks for listening. I am journaling. I just needed someone else on the planet to know I am lonely and I am so tired of it all.

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  33. This is my husband. He just doesn't "get it" not at all. I feel like I'm the only person sustaining us. He's had six jobs in the last 12 months. When he's off or only working part time I work extra hours. I ask him to help out more at home but he will not. It's a constant fight. It does get worse once you are married. I will admit I have recently lost my cool and went ape shit nuts on him. I just can't take it anymore. I really feel like he does nothing for me and doesn't care. I recently was very ill (pneumonia) and he didn't even bother to help me out. He sat watching TV for two days and left for work early when a friend needed a ride. Is it too much to hope that he could ask if I need anything before he leaves?? Is sex seriously something I've come to beg for?? My self worth has plummeted. Everyone says they can't help this well that's bullshit because I think they are intelligent enough to at least TRY. I tried it all. Chore list. Reminders. Fighting. Begging. Being sweet as pie... It seems the only time he is happy is when I'm giving 100% and he has to give 0%. Sad but true. As of this minute in time I threw him out. (Third time this month but only times its ever happened) idk if I want him back. It's really like a life sucking vampire not a husband. He once told me I was his light in a dark place. Well... He took all my light and now I'm in the dark.

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  34. I asked my aspie husband to move out yesterday. Did I make the right decision? I was so insecure that in the past if he threatened to leave or even if I threatened to go, I was fearful of losing him, so I continued to tolerate his BULLSHIT. That's until yesterday. Yesterday I found myself. My strength. My pride. And guess what, I told him to get out. I could have screamed or yelled or broke a vase or two (pier1 is too expensive so i opted out there) but you know what I did? I told him I loved him and I was sorry for everything that I had ever done to hurt him or cause him any pain or grief but that I needed him to go. He left and I stood, laid, walked around numb for hours wondering if I had made a mistake and if I would ever see him again or if it would be only to discuss a dissolution or divorce. (I imagined myself 30 lbs lighter signing that paper and shaking my ass as I walked away from him.) Do I ever even want to see him again after his betrayal? Was this it? Am I really done? Can I move on? Will he come back to me like that stupid saying if you love someone and let them go blah blah blah? Why do I even wonder if he will come back? Is it ego? Does my fragile ego need to see him cry and proclaim his love and admit his mistakes? Yes I think it does. The fear that he will have never really loved or appreciated me is too much to bear. What if he never looks back? But in my experience it is that 90% of the time, they always do come back. He needs time to cool off as anger will be his initial emotion and once that happens something glorious will happen. I believe he will start missing me and wondering why I haven't tried to call him or text or email etc.. I even went all out and deactivated the Facebook! But what I have done in my actions is silently put value on my worth. Do i really need him to define that by crawling back to me? I know he will miss me. I know no matter if it takes a week or a month or half a year he will feel the burn that I feel now and regret his decision to not fight for me or make the changes necessary to maintain a partnership. But even he did is it too late anyways? I feel like in my heart my decision has been made but I'm stalling. Why did things come to this? Why did it take me so long to be the one to initiate it? Fear of being alone? Finances? What is it that I am fearful of? My husband disrespected me in more ways than should be legal. He lied, he cheated, he lost several good jobs and wouldn't consistently help out at home. I work night shift so he would sneak away to the bar behind my back and lie about it. Did I mention his depression issues and refusing to take his medication? Yeah... That about sums it up. And every time he made a mistake it was because he "forgot his medication." I'm sure I left out a few things but you get the picture. He is a fucking asshole. Why do I even still have any love or last minute maybes for this asshole? I guess that's the journey I have to take to find myself but for now I have to detach and let him go. I have to let go of my anger and thoughts of being a failure because deep down under all my broken insecurities, I'm worth it, even if he doesn't agree.

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  35. You are certainly worth it, and whilst it will feel difficult for some time, in the ling run, it will be much netter for you. Stay strong x

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  36. My husband has aspergers and we've been married for two years, and i love him dearly but he has been complaining of extreme symptoms, confusion, and a feeling of being lost. He says that his alone time is what he needs to feel any kind of normalcy but his lack of empathy is frustrating because he goes off alone and doesnt think to even tell me. He now says he may or may not want a divorce. I do not want a divorce. I am also a quitky person, i enjoy traveling and have a wanderlust to satiate. My question is, is it feasible to stay married but live separately or for me to have a job that allows me to travel and not be home so that he may have more alone time. I enjoy sex with him and i enjoy being with him, but living together in small quarters has really taken a toll to the point that i have harbored resentment and he feels suffocated to the point of divorce. Im not sure if he really does love me, he says he does and that he still wants to remaim best friends that may or may not have sexual relations, but is this just an excuse to have an open marriage? He says he is not interested in other women, he just needs an excessive amount of alone time, but I've been played before and am scared to believe this and be made a fool of. If anyone has any similar experience with this, please comment! My family amd friends dont understand and blame him for being selfish and antisocial, but i am really just trying to better understand this disease, and keep him in my life in whatever way i can,

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  37. I have been married to a highly intelligent man for the past 11 years who once questioned if he might have Apergers. He admitted this to me after hearing Jerry Seinfeld admit he has this condition. I don't know if it's his high IQ or if he actually is somewhere in the spectrum of Aspergers. When we first started dating, he seemed a little uptight but after a few dates he seemed to mellow out. The first disturbing thing that should have been a red flack was that he didn't try to kiss me until our 6th date and he had an aversion to holding hands. We actually had some disagreements over this. Sex wasn't an issue, but he doesn't seem to enjoy kissing and lacks passion, not only in the bedroom but in everything. He never tells me he loves me and if I bring it up, he tells me he does so tell me....oh, I guess maybe I wasn't around when he did. When we go out, I always dress nicely, don't overdo the makeup but no matter how hard I try, he never compliments me. He may say "oh, that's a pretty blouse, dress, whatever, " said but never says I look nice. When I try to discuss these things with him, he tells me I am imagining things and gets annoyed. He has a sarcastic streak and never answers me nicely. For instance, if I ask him if he had watered the outside plants he will say "don't I always" or "what do you think?" I almost hate to try to have any kind of conversation with him. He only seems to communicate about something stupid some driver did, or something he read in the paper. It is never a response like. "Sure, honey, I took care of watering the-plants." You get the gist of what I am trying to say. I have osteoarthritis and have really bad flares from time to time.. We just ca e back from our summer place back east (I live in Phoenix). The plane ride and the change of environment plays havoc with my body. I was in tears today and he sits there mute. He can't empathize with anyone, not even his family. He has no friends that he hangs out with. He had a couple close friends back east but now he doesn't care to see them or call them when we are back there. We live in a really nice community and have several neighborhood couples we see from time to time. We all take turns having parties for different holidays. He has known these people for at least 10 years and yet when we walk into a party, he can be seen standing alone until someone sees him and walks up to him. He makes no effort. It is getting dotes and worse. I wonder if going to a psychologist who specializes in Aspergers could give us a diagnosis. I, too, am beginning to resent and even hate him sometimes. I'm 69 years old and feel too stuck to live on my own again

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  38. It does sound similar to the behaviour I see in my (Aspergers) husband. He will not spontaneously ask how I am if Ive been unwell, or offer to help even when to anyone else, it would be obvious that I am struggling. We get round this by me asking, telling or directing him, but that's not the same as him asking, is it. It's as if he just doesnt see what's happening infrint of him. It is very difficult not to let the resentment build up but at present we are "experimenting" with me telling him whenever I feel resentful. This can easily become nagging though - there's no easy way of managing I'm afraid. 99% of your emotional support will come from elsewhere which feels counterintuitive....

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  39. I've really been blessed by reading these comments. I think it's hard for many to understand what the issues with our "non abusive" aspergers husbands are. my mother recently told me, at least he doesn't hit you. like really that ess all I should expect. I've been married for 15 years now to one. he works( keyboard issues on my phone, please forgive), but is not a good provider, especially considering his abilities, I can never resolve any issue as I'm always wrong, at fault, " stupid". I've rai sed his two sons,also with Aspergers, that's how I realized he had it, trying to raise them on my own. neither he or the mother did anything but make it harder, almost impossible. ive done it, both sons know, I'm the "only real parent" and we now have a daughter together. she sees all the dysfunction. my health is a complete wreck, or I would leave, and my daughter has health concerns, or I still would leave. I just no longer, after giving him my everything for all these years, and sacrificing my mental and physical health can leave with her. I have few job skills, that I can employe dueto my health. my husband is calm and genital, but he never responds, and even reapeated calm requests to a response get nothing, or a very delayed and still passive aggressive response, or sometimes anger. I never know, what he "hears" whenever something goes wrong he didn't "know" or "hear". even if I just told him! and i can't possibly tell him every single little thing. lists and notes don't help. repeated reminders dont help, he constantly undermines whatever I'm doing with the children and family and then claims ignorance yet his IQ is through the roof. I'm an affectionate person yet I haven't had a kiss, in many years. Truly I'm just venting here! I can't believe they will no longer even diagnose Aspergers syndrome, much less Cassandra's, but let me tell you I have Cassandra, and 3 of my 4 family members have it. my daughter loves her father, I fostered and helped him develope a relationship with all the children, however he can't " empathise" with them, and the guys can't empathise with me, I'm going bonkers, and my daughter has to see it all. I've damaged my spine, and more due to his direct inability to follow any requests, that basically incapacitated me. I have no family our friends support, they typically can't see the issue with my "affitable" husband.

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  40. I have aspergers. After reading this I now feel despair. I don't want to be lonely it tears me apart everyday, I want a relationship, I want to become normal. But...if my existence causes pain to others what is the point of living I might as well die. If I have only this to look forward to.

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    1. I am dating a guy who has aspergers and I have never been so happy in my whole life before, please don't say that. You will find someone who will love you and who will take care of you.

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    2. Don't despair. A lot of the problems are caused when the person with aspergers doesn't realise they have it. As with any health condition knowing you have it means you can learn about it and find ways to cope with it. If you are then honest with a possible partner mutual understanding will help.

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    3. Don't despair. The majority of problems are where the aspergers person does not realise they have it. By recognising you have aspergers means you can learn about it find ways to cope with it. By being open with future partners it will give them the same opportunity. You will then be with someone who understands and can love you as you are. Always remember too that you are a special person whether you are with someone or not whether you have aspergers or not. Find your way to enjoy life.

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  41. Try not to despair. It is possible for someone who has Aspergers to have a good relationship if both parties are willing to work at it, to learn to communicate despite the difficulties that might lose, an if both accept that their partner cannot fulfilling every little need. Good luck x



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  42. My husband and I just got married in July, and have been struggling extremely. He was dx with high functioning autism three years ago and he has not figured out how to handle it, or understand anyone else. I don't want to leave, because I love him, but I can't keep arguing with him like this. Any help or advice would be appreciated.

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  43. I'm so relieved to know I am not alone. Unlike many of the Aspies I've just read about my husband is very tactile and has a very high sex drive. The arguing is something I find incredibly difficult to cope with. Does anyone else's partner take any medication for anxiety?

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  44. It's funny, I read through all these, and right towards the end I read nofelicity comment and he said right what I was thinking. I'm not sure how different levels work, and don't usually think I'm such a horrible person, but at the moment I do. I do not know how/why my wife has put up with this for so long and still keeps trying. Her counselor said he thought I had Asp and it was such a relief to her because the only think that used to make sense was I didn't love her or that I was gay. We've been married 26 years.. I see my main BIG faults as failing to compliment her and encourage her and not allowing myself to have fun. I do not want this, I want to change I want to put up my wife and love each other...why won't myself allow myself to do this????? It feels like such a lost cause even though I do recognize my faults and want to change... I've tried many times and feel like it's a waste of hope to keep trying.. but what else can I do?

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  45. OMG - why do I torture myself by vacationing with him I can't remember many if more than 1-2 vacations (out of 30) where we didn't argue and I felt like just walking straight out into the ocean and not coming back - such trivial arguments that he says are not arguments - I don't even have the strength to continue to discuss it because there are so many little childish fits of anger - he knows Im not accepting the blame that he's laid on me for decades (3)-- If I'm tired and not in control -I will bust him out cut him down and he retreats-- I'f Im in control then I ignore him and kindly ask him not to talk to me that way - and go do my thing. Come back and he's cool until any little thing can trigger past resentment of me. It's like walking on a time bomb. I've not made it easy through the years because of my recent name calling -family history is schizophrenic, bad marriages; mental illness-- thank God we have no children together--unfortunately my anger has built up through the years cause I'm older and hormonal and not taking crap anymore --because what folks don't understand it is not your typical marriage argument - it almost as if they are defiant species - sometimes demonic for a lack of a better term and it scares me to use this because he sometimes acts like a spiritual man. So when I ask him to pray when these things show there head - he resists Yep! - again I have to initiate that spiritual fundamental in our home - prayer not just at dinner or bible study, but when the peace is compromised in our home - he defaults to debate...hmmm.. Denies ASPIE won't try marital suggestions, even spiritual ones - because HE doesn't need it -- Its funny now but my focus is on staying healthy as he won't take care of me - but ignore you for hours if you have surgery and can't get out of the bed be sure to have someone there when you cant do for yourself - but my nature is to care for him when he is sick instinctively which happened this current vacation - that I'm on right now ....so many episodes I can't even relate and its day 4-- I'm going to the gym and will enjoy this relaxing vacation regardless -- been around the world with this man through the decades he is a piece of work -- I'm holding on to all the good things about him - cause If not things would not be good in our neighborhood!! What a world - Im thankful that I have created a fun happy safe world and family that provides love healthy distractions purpose - you must have this to survive when you have this situation - I know NT women that are cannot walk with MS - have had brain aneurysms, stimulated from the stress of marriage with ASPIES -- I'm not going out like that --

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  46. It is nice to read that I am not the only one dealing with a husband like this. I feel like shooting myself in the head with the crap that comes out of his mouth! He sounds like a child when he argues with me and sexually he is a mess. It's like he doesn't know how to do it. It's so weird. I have been married to him for 9 years and don't think I can do it any longer. I need mental and physical stimulation. We can go days without speaking to each other and it doesn't bother him. He thinks our marriage is great. I don't think we even have a marriage.

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    1. In exactly the same boat as you :D

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    2. Oh my goodness. ..that is me! Married 10 years and I feel like I have 3 children instead of 2. He relates to my 7 and 5 yr old more than me. We are not on the same level or have anything in common. He has desire for me but I don't for him. He is awkward and quirky in social situations so has no man friends. I am the opposite. I always was very social and liked joking around and having friends...but he doesn't understand jokes or social do's and don'ts. He doesn't recognize or care about what others think . Like if I say or do something he misunderstood or he doesn't like he will argue with me or say it out loud with string facial expressions. People notice. I would just wait or privately talk. I have no desire for him. I knew something was differnt but he treated me with unconditional love. Still does but has boyish ways of doing it...not like a grown man is all I can describe it. A colleague of mine met him"we are teachers) and said he has aspergers. I freaked because I was so embarrassed and doomed for a life of no companionship on equal level. Other husbands take care of their wives financially and emotionally and think of things to do for them that is adult like...they pay the bills, make mature decisions. ..but my husband asks me to plan things...go with him to doctor , speak for him, handle things...I am tired of it. I am in an unhappy marriage and don't know how to cope with it. I love my children and love him with a pity..not an adult love or in love feeling. I don't believe In divorce or want to hurt him...so I am miserable. I wonder if there is hope in having a fulfilling marriage with an aspie.

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  47. Many people will say that i am wrong but i believe that if you love some one you can do any to get that person you love,You can call me Nancy Holland that is my name,i was in love with a man name Jeffrey Frederickson,he was a good man to me'he make me to be happy,we dated for 6years,Jeffrey Frederickson love me so much that he was ready to do any thing for me,i believe that he was the man that was going to marry me,when they transfer Jeffrey Frederickson form is place of work to another state in Zealand to work there,we talk on phone all the time, Why so times i do go and see him but can you believe that my lover got married to another lady without me knowing and i was waiting for him to came and marry me,the most painful part is that the lady is more old than him and he told me in my face that he was playing with me,if you were me what will you do?i all most kill my self with poison it was my mother that stop me,for more than 4months i was not my self but the problem i was have is that i still love him any time i look at is picture i cry and cry,but the goodnews is that my lover is back to me,you will ask how,one day i was going to my friend house to see her when i saw her ex lover in her house proposing to her i was like how could this happen they have not been together for morethen 4years i know my friend love him,after every thing i call my friend how did you do this,at first she did not went to tell me i plead to her and told her what Jeffrey Frederickson did to me,before she now told me about this spell caster that help her to get her lover back,i quickly told her to give me the contact of the spell caster name Dr Ogogodu,so i call him i explain things to him after doing what he ask me to do can you believe that my lover divorce the lady and call me and ask me to forgive him for what he had done to me'i forgive him,my lover buy me a new car and also proposing to me my wedding is come up on 6/2/2016,i dont no how to thank Dr ogogodu for bring joy back to me,if you also need is great help contact him on +2348078999655 or email Ogogodutempleofsolution@gmail.com i assure you that any problem you have will be solve.

    Thanks for reading my testimony people we also reading your testimony.

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  48. U am married to a man with aspergers although we haven't been married for long our relationship has always been hard! Before we got married we started to go to counciling and read the bible more...these two things changed our marriage completely. We know communicate better. He has even learned how to let things go which is very hard for someone with asp. My best advice is God and counciling they really have changed his heart.

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  49. As an aspie myself, this is the kind of stuff that scares me, because in the future, I want to get married and have a wife and stuff but it scares me to think that I could wind up hurting her and I don't want to.

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  50. My husband and I have been married a little over a year. We are both in our early 50's. This is my first marriage though i have been in LTR and have children and this is his third.. He also has children. We dated for over a year before we married and i always noticed that he was just a little different. He seemed innocent and tried really hard to make people like him. He also described himself as a social person and a good people person...but as time went on i realized he just wasn't getting that most people thought him a bit odd and were being polite. He loves to hug and touch but doesn't always recognize boundaries. he is very OCD and hates a change in his routine. He is very obsessed with music and anything to with roads or maps. He once told me when he was little he started to memorize the phone book in his little town and got quite far.He is an identical twin and he and his brother were adopted as a babies and raised by a very nice couple. Our relation ship has been not going well and we are in counseling (his idea) but it doesn't matter what we discuss in therapy he feels he should do things his way or its wrong. This is how he deals with everything, He always knows the best way to do things and if it doesn't work out well its just not his fault. I don't know if he has Asperger's and when i even approached him with the idea that he was wired differently he went ballistic. Since i don't actually know how can I help him?

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  51. Before I married my husband I had a very good career, a few close friends and was happy and proud of myself. Now, I am depressed, ill, have lost all confidence and feel trapped in a loveless marriage and I hate myself for it as much as I hate my husband for it. We didn't live together before marriage and both being in our 30s got married quickly and had our baby within a year, so we never had a lot of alone time. We had another child about 16 years ago and have not had sex since - AND HE HAS NEVER MENTIONED IT!!! I don't miss sex with him because he only knows what he has read from magazines and was inappropriate and unloving. I realised he had Aspergers a while ago and we went to counselling, but he only tells people what he thinks they want to hear and we got nowhere. After 23 years of inattention, his disappearing constantly for hours, getting hooked on hobbies that mean he can disappear into his own world and never interacting, with meaningless arguments that go nowhere and achive nothing, I am beaten down. Unfortunately our lives, home, income etc are tied up with a family business and if I left I know the family would write me off. I have produced the grandchildren and there is no more use for me, even though I work in the business and they would have struggle to find anyone as consciencious as me. My husband has no friends but it just doesn't bother him - as long as he can go through his routines, say the same phrases over and over, do the same things over and over, he seems happy!! I keep thinking you only have one life but I have been living a half life. It is only my children that keep me going. I am no longer the person I used to be and I am afraid she is gone forever now.

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  52. I am 53 years old and just filed for divorce. We have been married for 13 years and he has been in counseling consistently every week for the last 7. I can't even imagine what we have spent on counseling. While I still care for him deeply, I can't continue in the marriage feeling as though it is a marriage of one. He is a nice person, but there is no communication, intimacy - physical or emotionally, and there is no time spent together. Our finances are kept rather a secret from me and that is a great concern of mine. I have struggled to make the decision to leave as I avoid hurting others, but realize I am also hurting myself by staying. I wish things were different, but I know it will never change. People say I have been a saint to stay this long. He is wrapped up in his own problems of how he was raised and can't let it go---it's sad to watch. He is estranged from his parents and friends. I have observed that he focuses on certain things (woodworking, hunting, exercising) to a fault and then out of the blue moves on to something else. We don't argue because I learned early on that it just causes tension and nothing changes anyway...guess I became very passive to keep the peace and my sanity.

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    1. Hi Annon,sorry about that's. Your life it's just like mine.I been married for 8 years. I just wondering my husband is aspie too.I told him to go to the doctor, and he said something like, oh I think I'm aspie ,so if you want to get divorce is OK for me,if want to staying as homemade too, OK too.Oh my God. Now I'm source everything about aspergers.I don't know what to do.After I reading all the posts in here.it's my life, oh my dears. ....Im just shocked with all this. ..

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  53. Wow, great to,read all these,comments.I am an older,woman, recently married and now realized my handsome , much younger husband has aspergers.he is very kind and helpful, but sex or physical affection is non existant.spends hours on the computer, or watching sports.works sporadically if something falls into his lap.thank heaven I retired with a good pension and health insurance for him.I think he's fond of me in a general sense, but probably saw a good situation for himself.I am tired of,supporting him and getting little in return.

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    1. Anyone calling themselves sly fox tango bar deserves better! You need someone who will match your desires with affection!

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  54. I have been with my husband since age 17. I am 58. He was diagnosed with HFA about 20 years ago, and he worked to improve the Aspie traits that were so damaging to our marriage. But I suffered terribly from his emotional and verbal abuse, and 11 years ago I literally drove myself crazy (wound up in mental hospital) trying to decide if/how to leave him. I went away to live in the woods with a very calm man for four years. When I came back to the city, I got sucked into my husband's orbit again, and although he has a longterm girlfriend, neither of us wanted to get divorced. I kept hoping we'd get back together (yes, I still love him), and he was happy to have me back under his control (yes, he still loves me). We've been part-time roommates for 7 years because he works in this city 3 days a week and I need help paying the rent. (It's a small one-bedroom, and a real roommate wouldn't be willing to sleep on the couch.) Just out of practicality (Medicaid, etc.), we decided to get a divorce a couple of months ago, and since then he has become very abusive because the court has said we have to split our assets 50-50 and he thinks he owes me NOTHING--after raising and homeschooling his kids, keeping his home, working part-time at a steady job with insurance (his income always fluctuated because his Aspie traits alienated a lot of clients and he made terrible financial decisions--pennywise and pound foolish.) He has called me horrible things and only agreed to sign a more equitable divorce agreement if I don't make them enforce it. He wants to believe he is helping me because he is such a kind and generous person ("I'm your fucking white knight, and you treat me like dirt.") not because the court says to. I can't afford to take half his assets (which aren't much) and walk away because I really do need his help--I am on disability and can't support myself. This state doesn't like to award spousal support, especially with people with a low income like his. I am trying to figure out how to stay in this living arrangement without losing any more self-esteem or continuing to feel under his thumb. The divorce decree, I feel, only gives me some leverage so that if I decide to leave the state in the future, I can make him pay up at that time. I can't afford to leave now, and he is doing everything he can to keep me in this isolated state. He is very emotionally dependent on me, even though he has a girlfriend. My friends and family said to finally just walk away from him for good, but they will only let me stay with them for six months to help me "get on my feet." I'm on disability--there is NO getting on my feet! I feel pretty trapped, though I'm trying to keep the thought that the divorce will help me not buy into his bullshit as much anymore. He has a very distorted view of the world because of his HFA and unfortunately, I've looked through his eyes too long and been too understanding.

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    1. Hello Louise,
      You say "I've looked through his eyes for too long and been too understanding." That says to me you know what you need to do. That's it. Do what you have to do and make the changes you know you are due for.
      "If you want to fly, give up everything that weighs you down," they say. Sure it's scary, but you can't waste time allowing worry about the future to stop you from making the changes you know you need to make. You have a place to stay for 6 months; that's more than a lot of people have. TRUST - don't let your fear stop you. You can do it. Who in the world would you advise to stay connected with someone who calls them "horrible names"? Why don't you call a local women's shelter abused women? Are there any other resources in your community you could reach out to for help in the time of crisis?
      Best of luck!

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    2. Thanks for your reply, Canadagates. A lot has changed since I posted that. One night I had a total meltdown set off by a scene on a TV show about having respect for one's spouse. I started hyperventilating and pacing back and forth until I just lost it and started screaming at hime that he had been disrespecting me by being with this other woman while claiming I was the one true love of his life. I had tried to have him stay in my life by considering him just my roommate (no wifely duties), but he continued to maniupulate me emotionally and abuse me verbally. I hated myself that I had so little self-respect that I had allowed the situation to go on for 7 years. That night, I knew I had to get out of there. I went to the local women's shelter for domestic violence and talked to them. Finally I picked up his fourth phone call and it was like a dam burst--40 years worth of pent up rage and pain came pouring out of me. The next morning, with my sisters' help, I bought a ticket out of state. I arrived with just 2 suitcases and I'm staying at domestic violence shelter. It is quiet and safe and everyone treats each other with RESPECT. I regret I stayed with him so long. I feel old and tired and lacking in confidence to start over. The only thing I really have going for me is a supportive set of siblings and friends. And I know that's a lot. I'll get by somehow.

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  55. I'm going thought the same thing my husband has Aspergers and I meet him online get married after knowing home him in person only for a month and I think he was a really nice guy loving care about me and all, from day one he don't take me out and pay for diner i always have to pay, I know he love me cause he go crazy when I tell him I'm leaving. We have been married for just over 3 years we have a 17 months old baby boy. He loves his son but he is driving me crazy, when ever I try to talk to him he start to go crazy about anything. He thinks the wold is out to get him, I'm at the point when I just want to end the married because in not happy. He don't do nice thins for me and I feel like when ever I ask him to do things for me he always say he dose not have any money. I really can't live my life this way! Wanted to make it work for my son but I don't think I can do this much longer

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  56. This question is for NT partners married to an Aspie spouse - what are the reason(s) to stay with them?


    Below is a bit about my wife and I and why I am asking.
    I ask this because I seem to "have" Aspergers, and I see the pain my wife goes through. As I continue to gain a deeper understanding (albeit a conceptual understanding) of what it means to be in a relationship as an NT, the sadder it seems. It appears to me that if the goal of the relationship is partnership it cannot be found with someone with Aspergers. We do not have children, we have no deeply functional reason to be together other than love and partnership. I very much like and appreciate this about our relationship, but she appears to be a better partner and seems like she is getting short changed in a sense. To an outside observer, I imagine that I appear like a good partner. I support her goals, I respect her in multiple ways, I encourage her to do things that make her happy, I don't care about social norms, I happen to make a substantial income relative to most people and therefore pay for everything so she doesn't have to work, happy to help out and do the chores and whatever else is helpful, I am loving towards out cats, people see us and consistently tell her "he loves you so much". Etc. Etc.
    But I don't know how to respond to her emotions (on multiple occasions, I have walked away from her while she was crying), I seem to really only understand what she is saying when it is laid out in an argumentative/logical format (and even then I rarely seem to feel what she is saying), I don't communicate well, I don't listen well, I am often swirling around in my own head (sometimes during serious conversations I will trace geometrical shapes in my head when we talk - and the more I try to stop it the stronger it goes). To stop the rambling on my part, I read this article, and it sounded fairly descriptive of some deep challenges I have, http://www.autism.org.uk/about/family-life/partners-stories/comfort.aspx.

    I love my wife - I care for her and I want her to be happy. However, after several years of trying to change, I see that she is now looking for happiness in changing her expectations of a partner. Perhaps this is the "appropriate" thing to do, but logically I cannot understand why. It seems the proposition is to spend a life with someone that cannot deliver emotional understanding and comfort and in exchange one receives...? I want her to be happy, and I would like for that to be with me, but I worry that I am holding her back from finding a person who can make her happy (or be alone, but not with someone who consistently disappoints her).

    Thank you for any insights you may be willing to share.

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    1. Sounds like you are a very good husband, and trying your best.
      As emotions go... It is so complicated. The most of it cannot be explained, a person had to .. feel it, and understand..
      Give you an example of how my husband is not...
      Years ago our daughter had to have pretty serious surgery of her head.
      Before the surgery we had an appointment with a doctor, and he explained all the details about surgery. It was so much to it. Like, if her little body reacts to a donor blood, they may not be able to save her life...Many other detail how her head is going to be reshaped...
      Guess what? my husband was reading a brochure, that he found in the office, while doctor was doing all the explanation!...I couldn't believe it, but didn't want to comment on it while in the doctor's office. On the way home I told him how offensive it was.
      Respond was: " You don't think I was able to hear the doctor while reading?"
      We are married for 18 yrs now. Have children. All I see is mind, but no heart to him. ( I do not really know how to put it). It's like there is no soul, or whatever people call it. Just empty person, as a person goes. Cannot expect much from him.
      When I am sick, or when I had a surgery, he is not caring or sympathetic. I am on my own.. If I ask him to bring me something, he will. But not from heart, not because he cares...
      Why do women stay?
      Like you are describing yourself - overall a man can be a good person. Sometimes we can blame ourselves for not trying hard enough (after all we are not the ones with a disorder), we may feel responsible for the man we are married to, knowing that in some areas Asperger man rely on us, on our general wisdom, on ability to deal with social situations.
      Can be a guilt. "He is trying... he won't be able to understand why am I leaving.. it's not his fault - it's a disorder...".
      In some cases, a man with Asperger learned to rely on a woman so much, that if she lives him, he will go nuts, and do something to himself.. In this case a woman really feels responsible for his life.
      In some cases - what friends and family are going to say when I leave him? They do not know how it is to live with him, and see him as a good man... I'll end up all alone, without any support.
      And it can be - She Loves You! :-)
      I hope this is the reason she stays with you!
      Ask her!

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    2. Part 1: Hey, I'm an aspie husband too and work hard to be as good a partner as I can be. Fortunately, I seem to be lower on the spectrum than many of the husbands described here. I click with what you wrote in a lot of ways - I am the breadwinner, I support my wife pursuing her interests, I have immense respect for her, I do lots of nice things for her, try to help around the house, etc. I don't know if low libido is really an aspie thing, my wife gets as much as wants, for as long as she wants, whenever she wants, and however she wants (about 10 to 16 times a week). She gets massages and flowers and treats, breakfast in bed 4 days a week, I make her nice meals when I'm home, etc. (kinda stuck come mother's day!). I'm very very rarely angry and it's usually a single outburst (just shouting). Happens maybe once every few years or so. We've been together over 20 years. She gets mad at me quite often, but she's almost always right and I own up to my mistakes right away. I'm honestly quite selfless and have an intense drive to help others. I'm in health care in a small community and it's not uncommon for me head out at 9pm on a Sunday to help someone.

      However, there are things that I just suck at, and I thought I'd share them, and what we do about them, as it might help you and NTs as well.

      When my wife needs emotional support I feel overwhelmed by a number of things. I really want to help, but have no idea how and that really bugs me. What she's talking about usually doesn't stir much emotion in me (but I think that goes together with the aspie strength of not being judgemental) so I can't share feelings with her because of that. I get this feeling like something's trying to work in my brain but isn't - it's like when you're trying to remember a word but can't, only 10X the intensity. It's very uncomfortable and disconcerting. I get a little angry and embarrassed because I know I'm terrible at that stuff and wish she didn't come to me with it. Like how a blind person would feel if they were repeatedly asked for their opinion on paint colours for someone's living room. I do have a hard time empathizing when she's having a different emotional response than me, and I feel like some emotion should be coming up but just isn't, and it does make me feel broken or defective and I really struggle with not hating myself for being this way. All of these converge to make a turmoil of negative emotions - discomfort, embarrassment, guilt, helplessness, anger at myself, and inadequacy.

      What helps is when my wife comes to me needing support, she starts off by saying "I need you to..." before saying "because...". So that might be needing a hug, a nice dessert, just listening and being fully present but not giving input per se, having a date night, spend an evening with her friends, etc. so that I am clear on what the action is and don't have to guess and feel terrible when I can't, and can avoid feeling angry at being helpless and clueless. I know the answer before I'm presented with the problem.

      Part 2 below...

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    3. Part 2: While some things fail to illicit a reaction, other things effect me too strongly, like criticism, or generally seeing conflict, or people doing bad things to other people (I can NOT watch the news). Because of my conflict aversion, my wife feels like she's walking on eggshells all the time and having to reign in her comments. So knowing this, I try to check my emotions rather than asking her to not express herself. Meditation really helps with this, as well as helping with my spaciness. It helps me be present and notice what's going on more without getting emotionally overwhelmed. I think meditation is mandatory for people like me/us. I think aspies are actually overly emotional and emotionally sensitive and don't know how to deal with it. I think aspie/HFA kids need to be taught coping skills early - you've got a brutal combination of an intense desire to please and be accepted and helpful and a need for positive feedback, matched with an inability to interact with people appropriately which leads to ostracism and ridicule and rejection, all in a person who is super sensitive to such negativity. The desire to just numb oneself is very strong ("numb" was one of my favourite U2 songs as a youth). I think a lot of these android aspies have just learned to cope with extreme emotions by shutting down and distracting themselves. (Not that I'm entirely guilt free - my wife lets me play solitare when we need to have a serious conversation, as I can actually be more present and listen better this way.) But I suspect if you created a really trusting, safe place, and taught some coping skills a lot of these "androids" would come to life! Anyway - meditation - works.

      Having appropriate expectations is common advice, but advice that makes the NT annoyed because they have to be the one compromising all the time. It's important, but for us it's just a first step. Just because you might not expect an aspie to meet a certain need doesn't mean it's no longer a need. Depending on what that need is, it's important to figure out how that need is going to be met. If it's emotional support, it's really good to have a strong friend network. For us this means my wife going out to social events and dinners without me, going out with friends or having them for tea when I'm at work, as I don't do social situations well, especially with more than two other people. We love spending time together,  and I miss her when she's gone, but this is very helpful and important for her. This may require informing people why you're doing this and we do - it's not because we're having a rocky relationship! In fact, when I've had some alone time and she's had some social time we are both recharged and happy when we get together again. I think this is important as a lot of NT partners will feel drained and imprisoned if their antisocial partner keeps them from fulfilling their social needs.

      In public, my wife calls me "dear" if I'm doing something aspie - like spacing out, or missing a formality or something. She never calls me "dear" otherwise, but people don't know that. If she does have a little edge to her voice when she says it, that's a pretty common thing for wives to do with their husbands anyway, so people might smirk a little but otherwise not think anything of it. But she doesn't need to put any edge to it because the word itself is only used for that, so she can say it quite calmly and lovingly and I get the message just fine.

      Part 3 below...

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    4. Part 3: Getting my wife to focus on what she loves about me really helps her, especially when I'm not expressing my affection or doing things quite right in the moment. She's getting better at understanding why I'm doing what I'm doing and that my intentions are golden. If I'm responding distantly and without emotion she doesn't read it as me not caring, or not wanting to connect, or being annoyed with her, and she can gently guide me to be more present for her. If I don't automatically help her with something she's struggling with she knows I'm not lazy and insensitive - she just needs to verbally and specifically ask for help and I'm right there (I do try to be mentally present and watch for these instances but I'm not perfect). The more she reads about Aspergers and understands my quirks, the more she can see through my oddities and see the person underneath who loves her to pieces and is trying really hard.

      Aspies like a project/topic to obsess over and learn about in great detail. Try sex. Get really really good at it (both of you). I may not be able to bring a lot of deep emotion to it, but after a couple dozen Os she can usually overlook that (I still try to bring as much emotional depth as I can, and I still feel inadequate in that department - I'm not giving up there though!).

      Stress makes my "symptoms" way way way worse. She knows this, and while it's not always convenient or easy, she knows she needs to keep things very simple and specific when I'm like that. Unfortunately the thing that stresses me out the most is her being stressed out, and that's when she's feeling the least accommodating. But if she makes an effort it goes much smoother in the end and she can turn me into an asset rather than a liability. When she didn't know this, her automatic reactions made the situation way worse and I would just turn into a freaking out, useless idiot.

      Sleep and down time is super important. I'm much worse with less sleep and gradually get more and more frazzled without downtime. Downtime can be productive - I find biking and gardening to be good downtime for example.

      Doing things together that don't require a lot of communication but acheive a common goal are really great for us. The aforementioned gardening where we're helping each other out (as opposed to doing completely separate tasks). Building something together, or working on a project around the house is also good. It feels like together time and it builds positive memories, but it's not touchy feely and I don't have to be "on" (analysing every word and gesture and constantly checking my own responses and constantly thinking of appropriate social rules for the scenario). So it's a really enjoyable and relaxing way for me to spend time with her.


      Part 4 below...

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    5. Part last: One of my ultimate goals is to learn to be "me" more. From a young age I've been told off for everything I was doing. To be accepted, and even just as a survival strategy, I started learning how to act in ways that weren't natural to me. I have a picture of what looks like one of those inspirational posters that says "BE YOURSELF! No... not like that though." Which sums up my life pretty well. The first time I tried to kill myself I was 8 years old (not good at tying knots, I remember thinking "Oh great, you can't even do that right!"). But that means I've spent my life being this person I've created to be accepted by others. I have a desire for my wife to learn more about Aspergers so that she can sometimes, on occasion, when it's safe and convenient, to let me try being "me" more. That would involve trying a certain way of acting and seeing if it felt authentic or not, if it made me feel good or not, like you would do in preschool. I feel like the real "me" is 4 years old still. I don't know if I'll be able to explore my true self in this way, but maybe with time and understanding and support it might happen.

      I think that covers most of our coping mechanisms. Obviously it won't solve every problem for every couple and some aspies are much more affected than I am so these won't work for them/you. Just trying to give some concrete, real life examples that work for us. I hope some of them help!

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    6. Thank you both very much. This was all very helpful.

      Thank you again, and I hope you both are well.

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  57. Please help me!! I am 38 years old. Married to an aspie husband for 10 years. For the past few years, we only had sex like once in a year!! The only times he wanted sex was when he hoped to have a child (I guess). After having a child, the sex just stopped. He had ED problem but never want to admit it and didn't seek professional help. I told him to get a diagnosis for asperger but he get angry and in denial. He told me he was just fine. I can't even have a normal conversation with him like others. I am exhausted, frustrated, emotionally drained. I even think of commit suicide! Should I stay in this marriage for the sake of our child? At the age of 38, am I still able to find another man (who can have normal conversation with me, not after money, look etc). I felt so lonely, long for affection, empathy. I really need some supportive comment.

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    Replies
    1. Get out now. Aspies are defective. No amount of advice or counselling will help. The burden will always be yours, never his. Seek help for yourself immediately.

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  58. Get out while you are young- I waited til age 58 and am starting over with nothing.

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  59. I'm really sick of articles which give advice to NTs on how to stay in an AS/NT relationship. You might as well just say: sacrifice yourself. These people are seriously defective and NOT NICE. No how blameless they may be due to their condition, it is hell to live with. You will lose yourself as day by day you bend yourself out of shape to get some semblance of cooperation from these self-absorbed people. You wouldn't stay with a narcissist would you? So why knock yourself out with someone who behaves like one. So, stop reading this crap trying to find out how YOU can fix it up, just as I am now stopping. This article has convinced me that the only thing to do is to run away as fast as I can.

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    1. You are right !
      I am married to one for 18 yrs now. Very self-absorbed, with "I don't care attitude".

      But, if you have children, parting is more complicated. You cannot decide what suits you personally. Have to think if separating will be good for the rest of the family. Plus, Asperger man can give you harder time after you left him, than if you stay in the same house...
      What really getting hard for me personally, it to be single, officially being married.
      No affection, appreciation... No sex for 2 yrs. I refuse it, because I feel used. I am just a female body for him.
      When I go to the beach with children, I envy those couples, that walk along the beach, holding hands...
      I don't know how it's going to end for us, but being "married" like this is worst than being single. Just because you are neither. You cannot even go for a date with no one, because you are married. You cannot enjoy intimacy in marriage, because you are actually - single, on your own.
      I feel like I got lost...

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    2. My married is the same like yours. Yes it is worst than single. No affection, no intimacy, no sex. Like hell but no one seems to understand. The only good thing about my husband is he plays with our son and responsible in his job. But what about me? I am like a room mate only. I now gather my courage to file a divorce before seriously I turned insane.

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  60. I plead my Aspie husband these few days and told him if he wanted to save me and didn't want to see any tragic event happened, please let me go! Thanks God, he finally come to his sense and no longer getting irritated when I mentioned about divorce. We are working on it, step by step and I patiently wait for the day of FREEDOM again!

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  61. Part 1: I figured out that my 42 year old boyfriend of almost 2 years has Asperger's after he was not telling me he loved me or really anything sweet for that matter in person, but could do it sometimes over the phone and plenty in text. He's constantly traveling for work so we only see each other a few times a month so that made it hard for me to really identify all the strange behavior as quickly. In the beginning we would get off the phone and I would almost chuckle and think to myself...this is a very unique and peculiar man, while scratching my head. It was a turn off and a turn on all at the same time. He showered me with gifts, flowers, spent thousands of dollars traveling to see me from wherever he was working at the time, many expensive dinners and we went at it in the bedroom. I couldn't quite put my finger on it but after a while I really started to feel like something was missing, like an emptiness and my self-esteem started suffering. There was just a sense of superficialness to the relationship. Over the next few months the over the top trying to pursue/impress me behavior started to dwindle and I now realize it was because I was no longer his "special interest". He still pursued a relationship, but at a much lower intensity. When I brought it up that he never says I love you in person he acted sort of surprised like that had not even crossed his mind and then got somewhat defensive. He tried playing it off but then said he didn't know I needed to hear it when he texts it every morning and before bed. He then admitted it's hard for him and he feels weird saying it. Over time he really tried to get better with that but it's still not often and I have started doubting whether he even really loves me. He told me he loved me first, about 3 months after we met, however, I asked him recently when he really knew he was in love with me and he said maybe 9 months into our relationship! I don't think he knows what love is! He does not give me compliments, even when I get really dressed up. We have been out somewhere and a stranger will make a comment about how nice I look and he just sits there with a dumb look on his face. He seems to like sex but it's pretty much always me who initiates it. He also seems to like snuggling but he touches me very lightly and I have to come to him. He will make himself something to eat and not make me any. He doesn't make conversation with my 14 year old son or my family. He has mentioned that he wants our relationship to progress towards possible marriage but hasn't taken any steps to truly "mesh" our lives. When I try to talk to him about what's lacking he acts completely oblivious and then of course goes into defense mode rather than discussing how we can improve for one another.

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  62. Part 2: Here's a few things (alot) that has perplexed me:
    1) Doesn't act spontaneous, laugh wholeheartedly or do anything outside the box.
    2) Never held my hand (got better with that after he read he should do that)
    3) Eats very limited but strange foods (he will fry beef cubes, pour marinara sauce on it and get mad that I won't eat it)
    4) Doesn't ask for outcomes info. For example if I go to the doctor for something, doesn't ask how my sons team did in their basketball tournament, how an important meeting went at work etc.
    5) Is very handsome but prefers to dress bummy. Would wear a sweatshirt and sneakers to a 5 star restaurant if I let him. Likes to wear shirts with obnoxious sayings.
    6) Obsessed with Superman and Marvel movies.
    7) Always complaining about something physical (this hurts that hurts)
    8) Walks like a duck
    9) Has told me he sometimes wears two pairs of pants at one time...wtf?
    10) Listens to the same music on his ipod over and over and over.
    11) Misplaces things...all the time.
    12) Will tap stuff on other stuff.
    13) Has told me my hair looks orange or my face looks red (after I blushed)and didn't see how that could be offensive. (I am IRISH!)
    14) Will take me to a very expensive restaurant and not say much of anything. (No romantic talk, saying how beautiful I am, how he's so glad to be with me etc.)
    15) Refuses to make me breakfast but will take me out for breakfast.
    16) Says he doesn't understand why I need to hear nice things "all the time".
    17) I could tell him I have a lot on my mind and he won't ask what.
    18) Is repetitive sexually. Very little passion yet acts like he enjoys it.
    19) I was throwing the football with my son and went to throw it to him and he acted like I was about to throw a bomb at him! He actually ducked and shook his head no.

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  63. Part 3: As I write this, it's really dawning on me how much I have sacrificed and how unhealthy it is. I read what other women have gone through and how much destruction these relationships do to the NT's emotional well-being. You never feel like you are in a partnership. I do not want to end up like this and I know if I stay, I will and up a basket case. When we're good we're really good and when we're bad we're really bad. Last weekend he suddenly started acting distant and when I asked him why he hasn't really been texting or calling for the last couple of days all he could say was "he didn't have anything to talk about". Mind you we usually talk at least a couple of times a day and text often. When I expressed to him that this is new and odd behavior he said "what's wrong with someone having some moments to themselves?" I tried to explain to him that it's hurtful that he would just ignore me and not want to communicate but he thought I was irrational for thinking that way. He did text me on the 3rd day of ignoring me and said he was sorry and he was just in a funk but still didn't call me. I was beginning to get angry because it felt so selfish of him so I called him and asked when he was planning on calling me and that I thought he was acting like a jerk. He just got defensive and acted like a bigger jerk until I started crying, which I never do so I could tell he was shocked but he did not do anything to try and console me. We got off the phone and I didn't hear a peep for the next day. Didn't call or text to see if I was okay, no text or call to say good night....nothing. It was this incident that really made me look at what was becoming of me. I can see myself getting sucked under from his heartless ways and I know I have to get out or I'm doomed. I told him this isn't working and how I'm sick of being hurt and he just coldly says "well if you want to go our separate ways just let me know." Just like that he can turn off what he SUPPOSEDLY feels for me. Oh, but let him tell it, he still loves me he just realizes he doesn't deserve me.

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  64. Part 4: I know this may sound crazily immature but my ex sent me a text saying he had seen me and my boyfriend at the mall and how cute he thought I looked along with some other flirty stuff. I sent a screen shot of the text to my boyfriend and acted like I meant to send it to a girlfriend of mine. Let's be honest, these people make you want to ignite an emotional reaction in them because they act like they have zero. I guess I wanted to see how he would react. Well, he all of a sudden was Mr. Emotional, telling me I brought him to tears and everyone at work was asking him what's wrong. Funny how they want all this sympathy but don't give a rats a** when they hurt someone. Last night I told him there's no reason to stay in this relationship when he doesn't even fight for me when I say I'm fed up. He says, well when someone says their fed up there's nothing anyone can do. This black and white thinking makes me want to bash my head on the wall. I sit there in a confusion wondering how someone can think like this. It's literally like half of their brain is turned OFF! What I need to accept is there is no way no how that I can turn that part on! I have always been a go-getter in achieving anything I set my mind to so this has been a hard pill to swallow that there's no hope. I like many things about him but these deficits in his thinking make the relationship unbearable and I will regret staying with him. It's so hard for me to just walk away though because I also wonder a lot of times if I'm being too hard on him and expecting too much. It's just that everything I know about how a relationship should go and how we should interact and respond to conflict goes against how he is. From what I've read in this and other posts, it's very hard for women to walk away from these men, but I haven't figured out why, especially when they are obviously so hurtful. I guess it's a form of abuse and the confusion these people leave you in makes it hard to think clearly. Anyone that can offer any advice on if I'm making the right decision in leaving him, NT or AS, I would greatly welcome that. And sorry for the super long post - I have been putting off doing this because I knew it was going to be a book.

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  65. I can't believe that I just found this site. I have read nearly all the posts -- twice. I've been married to my husband for 26 years. I knew from the beginning that he was quirky, but he was able to "hide" his AS behaviors until we had kids. Then the flood gates opened. Like many who have written before me, I diagnosed my husband myself (when I read a book by Temple Grandin.) It wasn't an "AHA" moment, it was a "HOLY SHIT" moment. Soon thereafter, I had a complete emotional collapse. For the last 12 years, I have been taking Paxil and Ativan for my anxiety. Between absorbing all of his anxiety, anger, rage, and depression, raising my kids by myself, and coming to terms with this realization that he has AS, I lost it. However, as he gets older, the AS traits are getting worse. The comments about difficulties with intimacy have made me cry. I'm a passionate person who loves to touch and be touched. I call our bed the "desert". There's NO touching unless he remembers to have sex, and then it's very mechanical and strictly to satisfy him. Like someone said earlier, I have sex so he's nicer to me for a day. My kids are young adults and lately my heart aches because I know we have not modeled a normal, healthy marriage. I have killed myself to make sure that they understand what normal is, even if they have never seen it from us. This makes me so sad. I am not a needy person, rather I'm independent, generally upbeat, self-sufficient and type A. But, I'm exhausted and done. In recent years, I have touched on the subject of AS with my husband. (His mother, nephew and niece are textbook cases.) He has sought counseling, but it only lasts a few weeks. I have told him on numerous occasions that I'm unhappy, I've asked him many times why he hates me. At age 54, it's not okay that this is what the rest of my life is going to be like. Even sadder, my kids would totally understand if I left.

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  66. I've suspected for years that my husband has Aspergers. Lots of the behaviours add up. Eg if I shift something in the house he'll put it back to the original spot. He doesn't know or acknowledge when I'm feeling hurt. And I can never have my side of the story. If I let my guard down and make my frustrations obvious then he stops communications for days/ weeks. Months and years later he will raise that period of time accusing me of madness. He is also keeps newspapers. There are neat piles of them everywhere. He says he will put them in the recycling bin once he's read them. Some are up to 10 years old or more. Is this a feature of Aspergers. Don't get me wrong, I love my husband dearly and I also love some of his Aspergers traits - if indeed that is what he has. Occasionally and now is one of those time he leaves and is not contactable for days. I worry about him and miss him. In the past I've suggested counselling - no way he's going. He remembers past occasions when my frustrations have become obvious as my periods of madness - they are very short compared to his prolonged sullen moodiness that follows. To compound these traits he has also in the past been a gambler but denies addiction and says he's stopped. For many years he's said he doesn't love me. Help - I'm not mad. He just won't have a conversation about any of this. Not coping. Is it Aspergers?

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  67. Two years ago, I had finally figured out that my husband has Aspergers Syndrome after 23 years of marriage. He was relieved as he read the symptoms, everything made sense to him. I am floored that so many of us are in the same boat, I am not alone! Thought I was losing my mind,losing hair teeth with worry. His shutdowns have increased, hates everyone at work, or, refuses to go into work regardless of the consequences of us suffering financially. Our daughter freaks out, why won't he go to work for days at a time, when her boyfriend visited us for 2 weeks, we said he took vacation days.Yes,done the protection thing, yes, my family call him lazy, they don't know,see him as putting all pressure on me. He doesn't see how, has no friends which I found odd bmet him coming out of the military and having lived in different states I took as an 'Oh well'.
    Tender and affectionate at first, gentle, all of those things. Once we got married,everything diminished to almost zero, like friends with the occasional benefit every 3 months or so.YES, I wondered,was me? Did he want to break up but not know how to do it?Was there someone else ? I'm not pretty enough, he doesn't like me as a person ? No sex. I too thought maybe he was bisexual/gay. You can imagine, these last few years we are like friends with no benefits.I have no desire to be intimate, too consumed with making a living for all of us, and resentful that he is so blase about it. I start talking,he walks away,doesn't want to hear it, no eye to eye contact, no discussions,apart from the news, weather, groceries. Occasionally he will listen, and reply with who cares if we live in a box! We have a daughter in her final year of high school,studying hard giving 100%, she cannot wait to go to college and move from home. She said it's too embarrassing . No friends visit, and her boyfriends feel sorry for her. She only invites them after months or even years of visiting her bf parents, because,at dinner,he shuts down,eats dinner so fast,sits head hanging low, no eye contact,ignoring general questions, avoiding conversation. She signals to me, maybe he would go in the living room, watch tv or come back when dessert was ready,but, no he insisted on staying put,blank expression, staring at his plate. I have given so much. Gave up our dream home,our second home, tried again, after a few years he said we couldn't afford it,which took less than one persons wage to make the mortgage. Once again,thought he wanted out, I'm not attractive. He couldn't understand why I felt that way. I adapted, now we are renting,paying lowest ever, last summer he said he is overwhelmed. I am at the end. It is all on me,until our daughter goes to college next year. I don't hate him,he is kind and sweet person,but we will be great as neighbours these meltdowns have taken their toll and would simply like some time for me.

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  68. I stayed because I felt I didn't know him well enough yet to walk away. Now it seems this is as deep as it was ever going to be. I am a parent to him and my daughter, nobody to lean on or talk to but myself. He won't understand how much I have done and neither can I hold it over him because he has 'A S' so will never really understand.
    In one way I have had to become the social butterfly talking to everyone, had to build my own network of friends in order to have a 'normal social life'. Luckily I also found dear friends drom 30 years ago, so occasional outings help me. I have tried, bringing one or two of them over and it seemed ok, the last time he ignored them, put on his pajamas and went to bed.I resented having to do it alone,as I wanted it to be both of us, men show interest, seeing me alone in a circle of friends, again I feel deep anger and resentment, because I am married, my husband is who I want to be there, not anyone else, but he isn't so I put on a brave face but hurt inside from loneliness.
    I have done everything, burying myself in hobbies long and short term, take classes, garden around the house,learning DIY, redid my floors and tile and kitchen . Planned project to fill the void of loneliness. He would go to sleep from early in the evening or sleep most of the weekend with no desire or interest. My dad is very old school and just assumed he is lazy and said he was worried about our future. No eye to eye contact. In the last 2 years, Yes he has left me, on vacation,twice, got up from the dinner table and never returned.Left me at my best friend's wedding,at family gatherings, shutdown,wanted to be left alone, answers rudely nothing is wrong, and proceeds to go into the bedroom, refuses to come out for dinner or breakfast the next morning. Everyone feels awkward, I try to keep spirits high.
    Now accept I have go on separate vacations where I won't get embarrassed. A few weeks ago,I told his mother about his AS, she was relieved to know and saddened. Her words, what will become of him? He just gives up, no ambition or any plans for his future. He was always so mild and laid back but lately the rage is appearing. Something's gotta give!

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