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...

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Showing posts sorted by relevance for query boyfriend. Sort by date Show all posts

Understanding Your Asperger's Boyfriend: 12 Tips for Neurotypical Girlfriends

"I have a boyfriend with Asperger's and I don't understand him, so it's driving me crazy? I know it doesn't have to be this way. What advice do you have that can help us have a very rewarding relationship? Thanks in advance!"

I get variations of this question quite frequently. So, here are my "best of" tips (based on some of the most common traits of Asperger's) that may help you relate well to your "Aspie" boyfriend:

1. When your boyfriend looks away during a conversation, see it for what it is: reducing visual stimulus to be able to better process what is being heard, or to more clearly determine what he wants to say. Shifty eyes do not necessarily mean he's not listening.

2. Your boyfriend may listen to each word that you speak, and interpret your meaning based on his understanding of the definition of the words you use. You, as a neurotypical, are no doubt able to generalize a little better when someone says something like, "Put a pile of mashed potatoes on my plate -- I'm starving." Say this to your boyfriend, and you might get a blank look. When the message is in words, it pays to be as specific as possible. Doing so can save time in the long run, preventing repeat requests or lengthy explanations, when a more precise word or phrase is all that is really needed for your boyfriend to get your meaning.



3. The more comfortable your boyfriend is, the more likely he is to be relaxed in conversation and easier to communicate with, understand, and be understanding. Trust him when he demonstrates a wish to do something relaxing in the face of an important issue. Reduction of stress can be crucial in important situations, and should not be considered a "lack of understanding" about the urgency of the situation.

4. Stress increases behaviors you may find frustrating. Decrease the stressors, however small, and you will decrease behaviors that you find confusing or frustrating.

5. Put aside what you "think" you know. Communicating with your Asperger's boyfriend while holding on to what you think you know about how people on the autism spectrum relate to others can create unnecessary stress. Your boyfriend is an individual -- a person who thinks about things in a different way than you do.

6. Keep your eyes and ears open for signs that your boyfriend is trying to understand you. Communicating is not a one-way street, and the responsibility of connecting with information should not rest solely on your shoulders. Although it may seem like it sometimes, you may not be aware of what your boyfriend is doing to try to understand. You process information differently, so the things you would do to try to understand him may not be the same things he would do.

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples

7. People with Asperger's don't respond well to criticism, threats, or manipulation the way "typical" people do. Even if you don't think you are being critical, if your interaction is perceived this way (even falsely), you are likely to get a defensive response.

8. Don't be afraid to ask questions. When your boyfriend's comment sounds confusing, it's perfectly fine to say, "What do you mean, exactly?" Aspies know that neurotypicals have a hard time understanding what they say. You are likely to raise more red flags if you DON'T ask questions about his meaning than if you DO.

9. Consider your verbal versus non-verbal communication. Most likely, your boyfriend either (a) relies more heavily on your words and less on body-language, or (b) he may rely more on body-language, which may result in a higher frequency of misinterpretation. Find out which method he uses predominantly. How? Listen. If you find that he is frequently misunderstanding you without stopping to consider that he is completely off base, he may be misinterpreting your body-language and otherwise non-verbal messages (e.g., expressions, tone of voice, conversational pauses, etc.). On the other hand, if he repeatedly asks questions about what you are saying, he is relying more heavily on your word usage.

10. Be aware of your boyfriend's personal space. He may have a space defined differently, spatially. If you see that he seems agitated or diverts gaze when you are within a certain distance, you will know that you are within his personal space.



11. Accept that you don't experience life the same way as your Asperger's boyfriend. So, his obstacles, interests, complaints, and frustrations are likely to seem illogical to you. There are many issues that contribute to the way he views the world -- communication issues, stigma, sensory, stereotypical interests, unique responses to social issues and stressors ...many more things than you may be able to imagine. If you look at it as if he is dodging paintballs all day long - every day (paintballs that are invisible to you), it may make a little more sense that he moves the way he does, talks the way he does, and makes the decisions he does.

12. When your boyfriend says or does something that seems hurtful, you can trust that it may not have been intended the way you thought, even if it seems very clear to you. When you say or do something that he takes offense at, you can trust that he is misunderstanding you honestly and not trying to be critical. If your family members or friends seem to be having a ''group opinion'' in the negative about your boyfriend, you can have the insight to be able to say, ''It may appear to be that way, but I think it's a big misunderstanding.''

This just scratches the surface, but these ideas should at least get you headed in the right direction with your relationship. Best of luck!

 

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples

==> Skype Counseling for Struggling Couples Affected by Asperger's and HFA 


Does Your Man Have Asperger’s?

“I’ve been reading about asperger syndrome and high functioning autism recently. I think my boyfriend may have a mild form of it. I’ve looked at all the diagnostic criteria, and I’m not sure he fits in perfectly. But that is hard to diagnose since I’m not a professional. I was hoping someone might point me in the right direction. I’m not sure if this is just some personality issue, or something bigger. But I swear he has some social problems whether it is asperger or not. How can I know for sure what I’m dealing with?”

So, you think your boyfriend may have Asperger’s (high-functioning autism)? Well, here is an informal quiz that may shed some light on the subject:



Does your boyfriend have:
  • a discriminatory sense of smell and taste
  • a preference for following instructions and abiding by rules
  • a tendency to be very literal in his understanding
  • an ability to see in detail, or an inability to see the whole because of too much detail
  • an apparent lack of empathy
  • an extreme sensitivity to touch, textures and pressures, or a need for stronger textures and increased pressure
  • either an acute sense of hearing or the inability to hear clearly
  • extensive knowledge about a single topic
  • inflexible routines
  • the tendency to care way too much about organizing stuff
  • the tendency to need other people to provide clear schedules and expectations
  • trouble describing basic emotions
  • trouble displaying emotion
  • trouble figuring what is appropriate in social situations
  • trouble understanding other people’s emotions

Does your boyfriend find it difficult to:
  • engage in or understand small talk
  • maintain eye contact
  • show empathy and understand of others
  • speak untruths in order not to offend
  • understand body language and facial expressions
  • understand personal space
  • understand sarcasm, jokes, irony 
  • understand social rules which are not based on logic
  • understand the complexities of interpersonal relationships
  • understand verbal communication without corresponding verbal cues (e.g., notes, diagrams)

Is your boyfriend:
  • anxious by change, spontaneity and unplanned events
  • experiencing difficulties in comprehending abstract concepts (e.g., formality, spontaneity, fun, anxiety)
  • experiencing difficulties in coping with the unknown (e.g., new people, new places, new situations)
  • experiencing difficulties in remembering sequences without prompts (e.g., diary, personal planner, alarm)
  • obsessed with a special interest, place or person
  • reluctant to use his own initiative

Are there times when your boyfriend can seem:
  • thoughtless
  • self-centered
  • rude
  • lost in his own world
  • eccentric
  • depressed
  • disorganized
  • anxious
  • aggressive
  • absent-minded
  • abrupt

But there are positives involved as well. For example, many people with Asperger’s possess the following traits:
  • direct, open and honest
  • excellent memory
  • high level of vocabulary
  • mathematical and technical skills
  • precision and attention to detail

If any of the above sounds familiar, then you may be dealing with a boyfriend on the autism spectrum. Of course, the only way to know for sure is for him to seek a formal diagnosis.

Unfortunately, another fairly common trait of (un-diagnosed) men with Asperger’s is “denial” that they may have the disorder. So, don’t expect him to run to their nearest diagnostician any time soon. In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising if he became offended that you “think” he may have Asperger’s. If this turns out to be the case, be prepared for him to get defensive – and possibly blame YOU for any relationship problems the two of you may be facing.

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples

==> Skype Counseling for Struggling Couples Affected by Asperger's and HFA

Asperger's Boyfriend Doesn't Like To Be Touched?

"My new boyfriend advised me he has asperger syndrome, which I have no problem with that (other than I don’t really know a lot about the ‘disorder’). I’m very interested in him …he’s a really nice guy, but I have one issue that puzzles me. He seems to pull back a bit when I make physical contact with him (lean against him, put my arm around him, for example). He says that sometimes it’s hard for him to be touched by others and stated that he never liked to be hugged by anyone as a child. This concerns me, because how can you have a close relationship with someone who is uncomfortable with physical touch… would be really hard to have a man that you can't hug, kiss or hold. Is it common for aspergers?"


Although it can happen, it is rare for adults with Asperger’s (high functioning autism) to "refuse" to be touched at all times - in all situations. However, it is fairly common for them to have tactile sensory issues, which may make them avoid certain types of physical contact with others on occasion. 
 
BUT... this really has nothing at all to do with the inability - or lack of desire - to show or receive affection. I work with many adults on the spectrum, and they are the most kind and compassionate people I know! So please don't make the mistake of taking your boyfriend's lack of interest in physical contact as a personal insult.

One of the most pervasive myths that surrounds Asperger’s is that a person who has it will never show affection and can’t accept receiving affection from others. Asperger’s and the way it affects people really runs the gamut from mild to severe. An excellent point to remember when dealing with a person on the autism spectrum is that each one of them is different and will react to almost everything differently.

For a few Asperger’s adults, a simple, random hug can be sensory overload. They can become agitated if they are touched without prior warning. You will probably need to have a trial-and-error approach when it comes to hugging and touching your boyfriend. Some methods may be responded to in a positive way, other ways might not be. You just have to try and see.

When you want to give your boyfriend a hug, instead of rushing into his personal space and just taking one, approach him and open your arms. Smile and see how he responds. If he doesn't come leaning in for a hug, don’t feel snubbed. It just wasn’t the right time.

Let’s don’t sugar-coat things here, though. You need to know that trying to figure out a puzzling disorder like Asperger’s can be a lifelong challenge, and for many partners and spouses, the affection issue may be the biggest. But with patience and learning to go by your boyfriend’s cues and not your own, you will be able to connect with him in a deep and satisfying way.

==> More information on dealing with boyfriends on the autism spectrum can be found here...

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples

==> Skype Counseling for Struggling Couples Affected by Asperger's and HFA


COMMENTS:

•    Anonymous said… Been diagnosed at 44 with Asperger's officially this year (2017) I was and sometimes still am, "skittish" about people touching me. this is not just for personal relationships, also friendships, work etc. let him make the first move but let him know you want him to touch you or that you want to touch him.  :-) takes some of the stress away.
•    Anonymous said… better to know it going into the relationship than finding out after 40 years of a " frustrating and rocky" marriage...
•    Anonymous said… hi i have aspergers and i am in a long term relationship and i dont have any pyysical contact at all, i find it to hard, becasue of sensry issues but we are still close
•    Anonymous said… I am very new to this topic, so please forgive me if this is an ignorant question. If I can't stand to be touched when I'm upset/mad due to the tenderness of the touch angering me even more, is that an autistic tendency? I get lost in so many articles I'm just hoping I can talk to other high-functioning folks and get some takes, personal stories, and opinions.  😊
•    Anonymous said… I can ID with that poor chap; i think we can see what we miss out on due to our hypersensitivity.
•    Anonymous said… I don't mind being touched and I have Aspergers  :)
•    Anonymous said… I sometimes have this issue as well. But it's more I don't want to be touched or held onto by certain people. My close friends or a girlfriend(intimacy is no problem for me)could grab on or hug or lean on me, but I'm uncomfortable with touching or being touched by certain family members or people who are effectively strangers to me. I definitely tense up when grabbed or touched by someone other than those truly close to me.
•    Anonymous said… I'm the same it took a while before I was comfortable with my boyfriend initiating contact, and even now if I'm out of sorts in any way or upset he know not to try to hug me, but hugging a person is his instinct when they are upset and it took him time to get used to not doing it to me. He does say that because I don't like contact that much, it makes it mean so much more to him when I do show affection and give him a hug or kiss.
•    Anonymous said… It can be VERY difficult if that's a true need for you.
•    Anonymous said… It takes awhile... I'm the same way... I don't like being touched until I'm VERY comfortable with the person... once I get comfortable though I tend to swing the opposite way...
•    Anonymous said… It's absolutely fantastic he told you up front!! Just know his love for you will be shown in different ways. You'll both have to make adjustments.... but isn't that true of any relationship? I've been with my asperger's husband for 10 years now.
•    Anonymous said… No, no we don't. It takes a very long time before I feel comfortable with someone even high fiving me.
•    Anonymous said… Phisical contact can happen for me but it takes a bit time to get used to the person been trying to
•    Anonymous said… That would be me and is why I have never had a girlfriend
•    Anonymous said… This is a common thing sign aspergics. I used to 'ball up' when ever some one Hugged me.
•    Anonymous said… This is a common thing sign aspergics. I used to 'ball up' when ever some one Hugged me.
•    Anonymous said… You might find it a bit ridiculous, but my husband sometimes ask before, like "hey can I hug you now and I find it much more easy because I know what's coming, and I'm really enjoying it. 
*     Anonymous said… I am still learning myself, but from what I understand and have experienced personally, autism/aspergers is a disorder of the senses. Our minds are wired differently and how we perceive the world around us is different. Each person is different and how they perceive each sensation and which sensations they are more or less sensitive to varies. It’s like each of our senses is on a dial and the dials are either turned way up or turned way down. For example, my son has a sensitivity to sound. Whenever anything is too loud, he’ll place his hands over his ears and say, “Too loud! Too loud!” When he talks, he often mumbles or uses a high pitched voice. Because his perception is different, he hears sound much louder than it actually is and speaking at a higher pitch in a normal volume is easier for him to handle. Sound is one of my senses that seems to be turned down a bit. My hearing is fine, but in order for me to perceive what I’m hearing, the volume needs to be turned up a bit. I like my music loud to drown out all of the other noises and the voice in my head that goes non-stop. If I don’t focus on it, I talk very loudly. My whole life people have been asking me why I was yelling, and for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why. It’s because my perception of sound is different. Touch is tricky. Different textures and types of touch give different sensations, which can be perceived a lot of different ways. For me personally, it’s kind of all over the place. I find myself craving certain kinds of touch at times, because it helps me feel grounded or provides a sensation I am looking for at the time (such as holding my husband’s hand in a crowded place to give me something to focus on, so my anxieties don’t spin out of control). Other types of touch I find repulsive (like wool). Sometimes it’s the texture, while other times it might be the weight or pressure behind the touch that feels wrong or even just how/where they are touching me period. Hugs and affection has to be done in certain ways or I can’t stand it and will pull away. Even how our fingers intertwine when we hold hands has to be just right or I can’t do it. That being said, I am still a very affectionate person. My husband and I just had to learn what worked and what didn’t. It was difficult at times, especially in the beginning when we were both learning. But, we found our way. The key is open communication between the two of you. He needs to feel safe enough to let you know something is bothering him and you need to be able to not take it personally when he pulls away. If you are really interested in him, I recommend educating yourself. Life can be interesting and challenging when your perception of the world is different. Being with someone with a different perception of the world can be difficult at times. Even if it doesn’t work out, it won’t hurt to have the knowledge. You never know what might happen in the future. My husband and I had to figure it out without the knowledge or a diagnosis. We now know why we had the difficulties we did, but having a diagnosis and knowledge that comes with it back then would have been extremely helpful. We are now educated and learning to adapt to a whole new set of sensitivities with our son. Hope this helps some at least. Best of luck! 
*     Anonymous said... We're in our 5th year of marriage and I'm learning all the time, my Aspergers comes with hypersensitivity as well so some touch is actually physically unpleasant, (I couldn't bear being tickled as a child) but once we realised then my better half is a good deal firmer with touch, which itself has lead to some of the hypersensitivity being lessened.... No idea how or why but there you are... When we first got together I was only just learning about AS and together we worked with it. It's not been easy but is worth the endeavour. I guess it's best to lay it out there off the bat and let the early days play out as they will... Not everyone is willing to invest time and effort into a relationship, and to be honest, you don't really need a relationship like that...

Post your comment below…

Aspergers Boyfriend Has a Computer Addiction?

“What can I do about my Aspergers boyfriend’s tendency to spend countless hours on the computer (researching this and that)? I don't usually care for labels, but I think it would be fair to call him a "computer addict." He is in his “home office” constantly and spends very little time with me or my son. Our relationship ALWAYS comes second. When I approach him about it, he just says, "I’ll be done in a bit… hold on!”  Do you have any ideas that can help us? We have talked about getting married someday, but we’re just not there yet. I really do love this man, but I have to wonder if he values being on the computer more than he does me.”



The first thing to do is to make an effort to get inside your boyfriend's mind. If you can understand his motivation and what makes him tick, you'll be in a better position to help him fully comprehend your concern. As you may already know, people with Aspergers are “wired” differently. One of the traits associated with the disorder is the fact that they give a lot of time and attention to just one or two “special interests.”

Give this a try: Plan a nice dinner out with your boyfriend on the weekend (without your son, if possible). Put aside your anger and disappointment and tell him how much you love him and appreciate him as a partner and a role model for your son. At the same time, be honest with him and let him know that his “computer time” seems to be taking precedence over the relationship. Tell him you value his input and involvement as a father-figure, and ask him if he would be willing to examine his schedule and make some changes.

If you can deliver this message in the spirit of love rather than resentment and frustration, you may be surprised at how positively your boyfriend responds. On the other hand, if he reacts defensively and denies there's a problem, it may be time for the two of you to consider couple’s counseling with someone who specializes in ASD. If he refuses to go to counseling, then you may need to either (a) learn to live with this situation, or (b) consider moving on.

If your boyfriend does express an openness to your concerns, then you've taken a huge step in the right direction. But you will want to have plenty of patience in store. If he truly has a computer addiction, he's not going to change overnight. If he's serious about making the changes you're requesting, he'll want to be held accountable by a therapist who specializes in addiction.

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples


COMMENTS:

•    Anonymous said…  So what is the sum total of all of this? My answer is this - ACCEPT PEOPLE AS THEY REALLY ARE.
•    Anonymous said… As to finding out what he needs, suggest you use a computer to interact with him.
•    Anonymous said… Best bet is to figure out why he feels he needs to spend that much time; if it is an escape what is he escaping from? Does he feel stressed/overwhelmed? But as states above setting concrete desires and plan of action; I need x # of hrs each day of personal interaction/Family time/etc and working that out; he may not realize or pick up that there is or that you have an issue with his actions.
•    Anonymous said… Don't use the word relationship it's meaningless..state what u want simply e.g. an ideal daily/weekly schedule then say please talk with me tomorrow night at...about this.he needs time alone with you too if poss..nothing improves unless you design it to
•    Anonymous said… I also have aspergrs and it is always helpful to have a schedule. Computer use from one time to another, family time from another time to another
•    Anonymous said… I am HFA and am 63 years old, am married. As a group ASDs generally tend towards empathy but away from overt displays of emotion. People tend to hide from things which bother them in some way. Perhaps he find emotions difficult or touching and being touched. Perhaps he cannot slow his thinking self down so as to hold a conversation. Perhaps his radius of privacy versus interaction is further away from himself than others' are aware. Also, be aware that ASDs may not be able to distinguish individual voices when more than one person speaks. Pushing emotional contact onto an ASD may result in a meltdown.
•    Anonymous said… I can pretty much guarantee your relationship comes first even though he doesn't show it. Aspies are highly loyal and dedicated. My husband is exactly the same way, video games and computers are his escape and relaxation. When our kids were younger we set it up that he doesn't play until after the kids go to bed (which was 8 for us). He also had to set an alarm for his phone or else he would play til all hours of the night. Also plan date nights where you can get out of the house. Good luck!
•    Anonymous said… I married late in life - after army service and after my 40th birthday - the 1 st marriage was not a success, though we struggled on for 11 years; I found her need for emotion and constant touching difficult to cope with and I escaped into books and hobbies.
•    Anonymous said… I reckon he loves you loads, personal space, my computer and other bits of nonsense represent safe haven for me, I use mobile devices to stay connected to that which allows me more time to venture out into the crazy world, I'm rubbish at peopling in general so not the best person to be giving relations advice, but when people say autistic folk don't feel stuff they are wrong, it is an overwhelming experience that creates my blank response to those deep situations not the fact that I'm not feeling anything, hope you can find some solutions.  😎 🎈
•    Anonymous said… I think you need to put very specific boundaries around your needs - ie I need to have an hour of time each day to catch up on life - etc
•    Anonymous said… In all of this I do not hear or see his voice nor what he wants - until you know what he honestly and truthfully wants, then you are whistling in the winds of uncertainty.
•    Anonymous said… My 3rd marriage happened late 2014 and we are both essentially loners who felt the need for companionship. M is severely disabled and I am her principle carer. Somewhat ironical because I wear a power chair. We annoy each other and then we laugh about it.
•    Anonymous said… My second marriage was to a lady I call the love of my life because she instinctively knew what she needed and when I needed to have separation because I was heading for a meltdown; we were really close - she was terminal when I met her and we had 8 years together. She died on the operating table on Jan 26th 2013. so just coming up to 4 years now.
•    Anonymous said… Nothing will change .. been there done that
•    Anonymous said… Now as to a non-ASD imposing rules or routines on an ASD - you are likely to find that he withdraws even more.
•    Anonymous said… now it sounds like your boyfriend is a typical Aspergic, let me tell you we love our patterns i have Aspergers my self, now i don't know him or you so i cant give direct advice but what i cab say is that yes he does love you, being and Aspergic we are drawn to certain things like technology, i my self love playing on my ps4 when i am at home. if i would give advice from an Aspergerics view point id say try to set up a time table of sorts a lot time for him to go on his pc and time rot you and your child.
•    Anonymous said… Yes He Probably Does value the time understanding and processing then with you. However that does not mean ur not valued. Tolerance levels of one on one and groups?
Asking for time in other activities is key for eveyone whos lives are online.
•    Anonymous said… Yes, this. 1. We need an exact, specific, literally-worded schedule, 2. Schedule ALL time, & 3. The hyperfocus on the computer/similar favorite activity is akin to what others do to relax and have fun. The computer stuff is simultaneously stimulating and relaxing. But it's also a need for us in this overwhelming world, not merely a hobby or escape.
•    Anonymous said… You need to be more concrete in your needs. People have mentioned a schedule for the computer but actually a schedule for family and couples time is probably s good idea too. Give him definites around the time and activities you expect him to do with you and his child. Now you may get tired of always doing the planning but getting him to plan things might be stage two. For now set up a schedule for the evenings. Including playtime for your son and time for just the two of you. It may be a good idea to schedule his computer time for the very last thing in the evening when you are having your own chill out time or going to bed. If he has met his commitments then don't complain about his computer time. If it cuts into his sleep time that's his issue. Not yours. Giving him very concrete plans is best. Saying vague things like you want him to spent time with you may get through to him as he won't understand what you want or what you are saying. Learn to speak his language and see how it goes. It's all about compromise and it may seem like it's you doing all the compromising but it won't be. Escaping into the computer or an activity is a natural impulse for us aspies and giving up some of that is actually hard. It doesn't mean we don't love our kids. This is " our" bottle or wine or beer . Or friends or social outings. These type of behaviour replace a hell lot of stuff people like you do naturally to feel good. Like friends or nights out or wine etc.

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Asperger's Men Who Won't "Work" On Their Relationships

“I have a boyfriend with aspergers syndrome that I love dearly. However, there are some issues that I would like to address that are getting in the way of this going to the next level. Problem is he won’t talk about issues, or consider going to a counselor that could help us. If I tell him how I feel, he gets overwhelmed and leaves. How can you work on problems in a relationship when the other person won’t talk about it? I really do love him and want to make this work, but I’m stuck at a dead end road currently.”

One of the toughest things in a relationship is when one partner wants to work on the existing problems, but the other doesn’t even think there is a problem – or worse, doesn’t care. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for some men with Asperger’s (high functioning autism) to flat-out refuse to go to couples counseling, or they do so reluctantly. Many of these guys won’t read a book about relationships, and don’t seem interested in talking about the problems.



It can be incredibly frustrating for the “neurotypical” (i.e., non-autistic) girlfriend who knows her relationship isn’t what it could be. After all, if he won’t work on the issues, isn’t it hopeless that he will ever change? And isn’t it reasonable to assume marriage is out of the question?

The question then becomes, given the situation here, what can be done on a day-to-day basis to improve the relationship before it implodes? Here are some ideas that may help:

Message to the boyfriend:

Men with Asperger’s who are unwilling to go to counseling are usually afraid that the counselor will berate them. They worry that the counselor will take the side of their partner. But, they need to understand that couples counseling is not solely for people on the brink of a break-up.  It is for any couple who cares about their relationship being healthy.

To use an analogy, you may not need surgery, but you should still see your doctor periodically for check-ups.  It’s no different with a love relationship that could use a check-up. Lose the stigma you have about counseling – and go.  A counselor is simply an anonymous friend who can help you get your relationship on a good track. Also, a good counselor is not going to chastise you or side with your girlfriend.

Also, remember this rule: “Whoever is hurt is the one who is suffering.” Stop focusing on who is right and wrong, and focus on the fact that your girlfriend is hurt.  This is your partner, not your sister. Your girlfriend wants to be with you. She cares about you. If she didn’t, then she wouldn’t be working so hard to keep the relationship going.

Message to the girlfriend:

If your boyfriend has refused to work on the relationship, show him that YOU are trying to work on it.  Read relationship books or E-books (look on Amazon) in the presence of your man (in 15-minute chunks, max).  This is a tactful and subtle hint without being a “bitch.”  Most men are open to being read to, because it doesn’t feel like a personal attack. This strategy may spark your boyfriend’s interest to engage in conversation about what you’re reading and inspire him to want to read along, or at least read a chapter or section. Try it! You've got nothing to lose here.

In addition, understand that you have already tried talking about the relationship problems many times now – and have been ignored. Thus, bringing it up in the same context isn’t going to help.  Your first temptation may be to do so louder or with a drastic ultimatum.  Don’t do either.  The problem may be something your boyfriend will never change – and maybe can’t change even if he wanted to. Who knows?  It’s important to realize that potential reality and not feel “entitled” to him changing. If the two of you are meant to be together, then it will happen regardless of your efforts to “fix” the relationship.

==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples


==> Skype Counseling for Struggling Couples Affected by Asperger's and HFA

Why People with ASD Can Be Very STUBBORN!

“Why is my boyfriend [with ASD] so stubborn and closed-minded?”

Realizing that your boyfriend on the autism spectrum will not be a good observer of his own behavior is your first step in understanding him. ASD-like behavior is often a result of anxiety that accompanies mind-blindness.

On way for the person on the spectrum to reduce anxiety is to have rules, strict routines, and lots of structure in his life. This often appears to others as very rigid behavior. This rigidity is the most common reason for relationships problems.

Reasons for rigidity include the following:

  • anxiety about a current or upcoming event, no matter how trivial it might appear to you 
  • any violation of a rule or ritual (changing something from the way it is “supposed” to be)
  • immediate gratification of a need
  • misunderstanding or misinterpretation of other's actions
  • OCD
  • perfectionism 
  • sensory sensitivities
  • the need to avoid or escape from a non-preferred activity (e.g., chit chat)
  • need to control a situation
  • need to engage in or continue a preferred activity, usually an obsessive action or fantasy
  • transitioning from one activity to another (this is usually a problem because it may mean ending an activity before he is finished with it)


Understanding your boyfriend involves knowing the traits of the disorder - and how they manifest themselves in everyday behaviors. How does he view the world, think about things, and react to what is going on in his environment? 


==> Living With Aspergers: Help for Couples 

==> Online Counseling for Struggling Individuals & Couples Affected by Asperger's

Crucial Interventions for Couples Affected by Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism


Here you will find important information (in alphabetical order) for those experiencing relationship problems associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder:

 

§  Anger to Meltdown to Guilt to Self-Punishment: An ...

§  Anger-Control Problems in Adults on the Autism Spe...

§  Asperger’s Adults and Blue Mood

§  Asperger’s Adults and Problems with Social Imagina...

§  AS and Attention Deficit Disorder

§  Asperger's and Problems with Prediction

§  Asperger's and That Damn Anxiety Problem

§  Boyfriend Doesn't Like To Be Touched?

§  Boyfriend Has a Computer Addiction?

§  Challenges Facing Wives Who Are Married to Asperge...

§  Conversation Starters: Advice from a Guy with Aspe...

§  Denying the Diagnosis of Asperger's

§  Discouraged "Neurotypical" Wife Speaks Out

§  Does My New "Friend" Have Asperger’s?

§  Does Your Man Have Asperger’s?

§  Drug/Alcohol Abuse and Asperger Syndrome

§   Feeling "Out of Place" in the World

§  Feeling Like a “Bad” Partner or Spouse in a Relati...

§  Having a Positive Attitude with Asperger's

§  Help for Adults with Asperger's (high-functioning ...

§  How Aspie Husbands Can Avoid Arguments With NT Wives

§  How I Live with Asperger’s: Tips from a 52-Year-Ol...

§  How to Avoid Meltdowns: Calming Strategies for Adu...

§  How to Deal with Me: An Aspergers Man’s Note to Hi...

§  How to Improve Relationships with Women: Help for ...

§  How to Make it Through the Holiday Season: Tips fo...

§  How to Stay Out of the Doghouse with Your Neurotyp...

§  Inflexibility

§  Is it Sadness or Full-Blown Depression: Tips for A...

§  Is Your Asperger’s Partner a Jerk – or is it a Def...

§  It’s Asperger’s! Should You Share the News?

§  Lack of "Displays of Affection" in Adults with Asp...

§  Making Sense of “Odd” Asperger’s Behavior

§  Medications That Help with Asperger’s Symptoms

§  Men Who Won't "Work" On Their Relations...

§  Men with Asperger's: Summary of Traits that Affect...

§  Men With Asperger's: What Potential Partners Need ...

§  Message to Aspies: Are you afraid to take an hones...

§   Poor Time-Management Skills

§  Positive Traits of Asperger’s Men as Reported by T...

§  Problems with Empathy

§  Relationship Difficulties Due to Deficits in "Theo...

§  Resentment in the Neurotypical Wife

§  Rituals and Obsessions in Adults with Aspergers an...

§  Rules of Effective Listening: Tips for Men on the ...

§  Ruminations in People with Asperger's and High-Fun...

§  Self-Management of Angry Outbursts for Men with As...

§  Should You Disclose Your Diagnosis to Others?

§  Should You Try to Act "Normal?" – Tips for People ...

§  Shutdowns in Spouses/Partners with Asperger’s

§  Signs That Your Neurotypical Wife Is Becoming Bitt...

§  Social Skills 101: Tips for Aspies

§  Suicidal Thinking in People with Asperger's and Hi...

§  Taking Things Too Personally: Tips for Adults on t...

§  Telling Others That You Have Asperger's

§  The 3 Anger Styles of Adults with Asperger’s and HFA

§  The 3 Types of Aspies

§  The Angry Aspie: Tips for Adults on the Autism Spe...

§  The Bullying of People with Asperger’s: Long-Term ...

§  The Easily Frustrated Aspie

§  The Fear of Being Diagnosed with an Autism Spectru...

§  The Hidden Curriculum: Tips for Dummies

§  The Risks Associated with an “Asperger’s” Label

§  Tics in Adults with Asperger Syndrome

§  Tips for Discouraged Neurotypical Spouses: Are You...

§  Traits That Contribute to Relationship ...

§  Traits That Get Misinterpreted As "Inap...

§  Understanding the Mind of Your Asperger’s Mate

§  Understanding the Mind of Your Partner with Asperg...

§  Understanding Your Asperger's Boyfriend: 12 Tips f...

§  What I Do to Cope with Asperger's: My Personal Story

§  What I’ve Learned About Me: Self-Confessions of an...

§  What To Do After a Big Fight With Your Neurotypica...

§  What To Do When Your "Aspie" Man Fails To Empathize

§  What To Do When Your "Neurotypical" Wife Resents You

§  When Your Asperger's Man is a Reluctant Talker: Ti...

§  Why “Neurotypical” Wives Are Unhappy in Their Marr...

§  Why Adults with Asperger’s Are Prone to "Meltdowns"

§  Why Adults with Asperger's May Seem Inflexible

§  Why Do Some Adults with Asperger’s Get Labeled as ...

§  Why I Am Glad I Got Diagnosed

§  Why Some Asperger's Men Fall Out of Love - Seeming...

§  Why the NT Partner's Attempts to Fix the Relations...

§  Why Your Asperger's Husband or Partner Refuses to ...

§  Wife's Account of the Ups and Downs of an Asperger...

§  Women in Relationships with Asperger's Men -- Our ...

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