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10 Signs You're Experiencing Emotional Trauma in a Relationship with an ASD Partner

If you’re in a relationship with intense baggage, conflict, or symptoms that seem similar to PTSD, there’s a good chance you’re in a toxic relationship with an emotionally abusive partner or spouse, and are suffering as a result.

Whether you actually qualify for a PTSD diagnosis or not, these feelings are very real and prevent you from having a healthy life - both physically and emotionally.

Here are 10 signs that people often experience when they are in a toxic, emotionally abusive relationship with someone on the autism spectrum:

1.  You have lost interest in having sex with this person. In fact, just the thought of it can make you a bit sick. You don’t enjoy spending time with him or her, and you dread such things as meal time and phone calls etc. Most social contact with this person causes you an element of distress.

2.  You often feel worthless and notice your confidence and self-esteem are waning.

3. You often have thoughts of divorcing this person, which brings you a sense of temporary relief. But this is quickly followed by feelings of guilt for even contemplating divorce.

4. You often have intense feelings of isolation and loneliness. This may occur when your Asperger's partner is off somewhere engaging in his or her "special activity," or when this person is in shutdown mode as a way to cope with relationship-related stress.

5. You blame yourself at some level for being "stupid" enough to fall in love with a person who is this selfish, uncaring, and insensitive. This person wasn't abusive early in the relationship, but now you feel like a fool or a sucker for not noticing the red flags "back in the day."

6. In your heart of hearts, you know you can’t continue living like this, but you’re having a very hard time letting go and moving on.

7. You often have intrusive thoughts, "waiting for the other shoe to drop." When is your Asperger's partner going to have his or her next meltdown or temper tantrum? As one neurotypical spouse stated, "Whenever things are going well and my AS husband is calm, this little voice creeps in my head that says, 'This won’t last. Don’t trust this. The other shoe is going to drop at any moment.' And it always does." [This is a sign of PTSD, by the way.]

8. You feel like you are constantly walking on egg shells, and you frequently apologize for "upsetting" this person.

9. You have tried really hard to not say or do anything to be upsetting to this person, but your best efforts usually fail.

10. You frequently feel anxious and/or depressed. Flashbacks from past disputes, as well as a few nightmares, are not uncommon.


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