Blog for Individuals and Neurodiverse Couples Affected by ASD
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 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...
Post a Comment