Are you an adult with High-Functioning Autism or Asperger's? Are you in a relationship with someone on the autism spectrum? Are you struggling emotionally, socially, spiritually or otherwise? Then you've come to the right place. We are here to help you in any way we can. Kick off your shoes and stay awhile...

Why Your Spouse on the Autism Spectrum is Depressed


"Why is my husband [Asperger's] depressed all the time? Is depression part of the disorder? He doesn't talk much nowadays and seems to have very little quality of life in general. What can be done to help him? We haven't been getting along well for quite a while."

This is not surprising - and is a very common occurrence with people on the autism spectrum. My experience has been that these ASD individuals who are depressed a lot have been under pervasive, chronic stress over a long period of time.

Depression very rarely causes anxiety, but prolonged anxiety always causes depression. It's physically and emotionally draining to be under the influence of stress hormones 365 days-a-year ... a steady drip-drip-drip of adrenaline, noradrenalin, cortisol, Cortizone - all the stress chemicals wears-and-tears on them until it negatively affects their mood in the form of depression.

Feeling like a failure in the marriage is another major contributor to depression in males on the autism spectrum. They really want to please their wife (seriously, they do) but haven't figured out how to do this on a consistent basis. Being on the receiving end of what feels to him like chronic complaints about his "lack" slowly sucks a lot of self-esteem out of him, which reinforces his negative belief that he is indeed a social failure.

So, to work on the depression would be simply treating a symptom. It would be much better to treat the cause - which is anxiety! And the main cause of anxiety is the ASD individual's faulty belief system - and associated negative self-talk. 

So in treating people with depression, I’m looking at the thinking errors they have about themselves (and the world in general), along with the destructive  inner-monologue and commentary those thinking errors generate, AND the resultant self-fulfilling prophesies that often occur (i.e., believing in something negative for so long that it eventually becomes a reality).

The cycle often looks similar to this:
  • "I never get it right. So, I'm in a constant state of either trying harder or simply giving up"  [thinking error].
  •  "Trying harder and/or giving up doesn't fix my problems [anxiety], and is wearing me out" [depression].
  • "Things will just get worse from here on, I guess" [setting up a self-fulfilling prophesy].

On a related note, your Asperger's husband would benefit greatly from our ongoing men's group (diagnosed with ASD, or otherwise). In these groups, we take a deep dive into the issues of anxiety, depression, thinking errors, social skills, building self-esteem, and much more.

==> More information on the ASD Men's Group... 

More resources:

==> Online Group Therapy for Couples Affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder
==> One-on-One Counseling for Struggling Individuals & Couples Affected by Asperger's
==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples [eBook and Audio]
==> Videos to help you understand your partner on the autism spectrum...

Why Your Partner on the Autism Spectrum Drifts Away from the Relationship


The reason your partner on the autism spectrum has tended to drift away from the relationship is multifactorial, but the main reason is as follows:

Due to mind-blindness, alexithymia, anxiety, excessive need for routine and structure, rituals and obsessions - and a few other comorbid conditions associated with Asperger syndrome and high functioning autism - the person on the autism spectrum has difficulty connecting to his neurotypical (NT) spouse in a way that is satisfying to her. His attempts at meaningful connection are low in empathy, emotional reciprocity, and active listening, just to name a few.

Thus, the NT has registered numerous complaints over the years (with the best of intentions), and she has advised him numerous times what he could be doing to improve the relationship, but her attempts at repairing the relationship often fall short. Why?

Because the ASD partner tries to meet his wife's expectations, but his attempts to "do better" are still coming from the same place of mind-blindness, alexithymia, low emotional/social intelligence, an excessive logical way of thinking, etc. Trying harder with the same deficits in place doesn’t improve the situation - and in many cases, makes a bad problem worse, because he gets to a point of extreme frustration and gives up.

After repeated failures, the man with ASD begins to believe that meeting his wife’s needs, wants and expectations is simply impossible. He may even think, "It doesn’t matter what I say or do, it’s never good enough." Which unfortunately is true, because many things he’s trying to do or say to make things better are still coming from the same "deficits" that existed when the first sign of problems became manifest.

Thus, all the problem-solving strategies and effective communication techniques that are explored will usually be fairly useless until some of the comorbid conditions mentioned earlier are addressed first. The good news is that there are social skills that can be learned that will significantly help the ASD individual to work around some of these areas of deficits.

==> In the next coaching group for NT women (in a relationship with ASD men), we will look at strategies to deal with these comorbid conditions that will greatly increase the likelihood of effective communication and emotional reciprocity. Also, it would be important for your ASD husband to join the men’s group. See the link below the video for more information on both groups...


Online Group Therapy for Couples & Individuals Affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder

Mark Hutten, M.A. - Counseling Psychologist

Are you experiencing relationship difficulties with your partner or spouse who is on the autism spectrum (ASD)? Are you on the autism spectrum and struggle to meet your neurotypical (NT) partner's needs and expectations? Has separation or divorce crossed your mind? Are the two of you already in the process of breaking up? If so, then this is your opportunity to receive group therapy via Skype with me, Mark Hutten, M.A.


A MESSAGE FOR Neurotypical + ASD Couples:



A MESSAGE FOR THE ASD MEN (diagnosed or otherwise):



A MESSAGE FOR THE NEUROTYPICAL (NT) WOMEN:



If you're interested, please read the following:
  1. Create a Skype account, if you haven't done so already - it's free!
  2. Cost: $99.00 for the 4-week class (1 hour per week). To get your group access link, simply click on the PayPal Buy Now button below to register.
  3. Email me after purchase so I can send you the access link to the upcoming group: mbhutten@gmail.com   (Note; Please give me up to 24 hrs. to send you the link).
  4. Bonus: Get my $19.00 eBook (see below) for FREE! When you register for the class, I'll email you the link to the eBook along with your access link.

OUR NEXT SCHEDULED GROUPS:

*** ASD/NT Couples only ***
Date: Meets on Mondays and runs from 8/10/20 to 8/31/20 - CLOSED
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: attend with or without your ASD partner (preferably with)


Date: Meets on Mondays and runs from 9/14/20 to 10/5/20 - OPEN
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: attend with or without your ASD partner (preferably with)

------------------------------------------------------------

*** NT Women only ***

Date: Meets on Tuesdays and runs from 8/4/20 to 8/25/20 -  CLOSED
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: no ASD participants

Date: Meets on Tuesdays and runs from 9/8/20 to 9/29/20 - OPEN
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: no ASD participants

------------------------------------------------------------

*** ASD Men only ***

Date: Meets on Wednesdays and runs from 8/12/20 to 9/2/20 - CLOSED 
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: no NT participants 
*** You do not have to have a formal diagnosis to attend. *** 


Date: Meets on Wednesdays and runs from 9/16/20 to 10/7/20 - OPEN 
Time: 3 PM (Eastern Standard Time)
Members: no NT participants 
*** You do not have to have a formal diagnosis to attend. ***



==> More groups coming up in the very near future:
  • Both the NT and her/his ASD partner or spouse
  • ASD partners ONLY (no NT participants)
  • NT partners ONLY (no ASD participants)


Got questions? Email: mbhutten@gmail.com
Crucial information to get you started with healing your relationship:







More audio clips from Mark's workshops:






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Not ready to do group therapy yet? Try my program first then:

==> Living with an Aspergers Partner ...is a downloadable eBook designed to help couples who are experiencing relationship difficulties related to Aspergers (high-functioning autism).

WATCH THE VIDEO BELOW!


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Brief biography:

Educational-
  • Bachelors Degree; Psychology - Anderson University, Anderson, IN
  • Masters Degree; Counseling Psychology - Vermont College of Norwich University, Montpelier, VT

Employment history-
  • Madison County Juvenile Probation: SHOCAP Program
  • Madison County Community Justice Center
  • Madison County Correctional Complex
  • Sowers of Seeds Counseling
  • Indiana Juvenile Justice Task Force
  • The Anderson Center 
  • The Center for Mental Health

I'm a retired Family Therapist who performed home-based counseling/supervision for families experiencing difficulty with their children's emotional and behavioral problems, and conducted the following group therapies:
  • Parent-Education Training
  • Anger-Management Groups
  • Relapse Prevention Groups
  • Drug/Alcohol Workshops
  • Sex Offender Groups

I'm currently a practicing Counseling Psychologist and parent-coach with more than 25+ years of experience. I have worked with hundreds of children and teens with Autism and Asperger's. I have also worked with hundreds of couples (married or otherwise) affected by autism spectrum disorders. I present workshops and run training courses for parents and professionals who deal with Autism Spectrum Disorders, and am a prolific author of articles, Blogs, and Ebooks on the subject.

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