ASD is often characterized by a lack of impulse control. People on the autism spectrum are sometimes labeled unmanageable or aggressive because of their impulsivity (e.g., they may act on a whim, display behavior characterized by little - or no - forethought/reflection/consideration of the consequences).
Even though adults on the spectrum can be caring and sensitive, their good qualities are often overshadowed by their lack of impulse control (i.e., their ability to "self-regulate" is compromised).
The inability to self-regulate is often a contributing factor to relationship problems. For example:
- the ASD partner will often focus on things that interest him, but not on you (the NT wife)
- he may not follow through on what he agrees to do
- he may often act like a child instead of an adult
- you may nag him, and start to dislike the person you’ve become as a result
- the two of you either fight or clam up
- you may be stressed about being stuck with the household tasks while he gets to have all the “down-time”
- the ASD partner may feel that his NT spouse has become a “nagging monster”
- he may view you (the NT) as a control freak, trying to manage all the details of his life
- he may think that no matter how hard he tries, he can’t meet your expectations
- he may think that the easiest way to deal with you is to leave you alone