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wtfjusthappened
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08 May 2019, 5:34 pm

I'm a guy in my early 40s and self-diagnosed aspie. Been married for 15+ years with a couple of kids. I was a social recluse with zero friends from middle school till the end of college. I can count on one hand the number of times I went out outside of school/college during that 10 year time span. During grad school my social life opened up a bit. I was still awkward and never had a lot of friends but I did end up meeting my wife.

Fast forward to summer of last year when we were staying at my wife's relative's beach house. While we were there, a cousin of my wife's who's 25 and is currently (struggling...more on that later) in grad school was staying in the same house. I've know this girl since she was in elementary school and have seen her grow up. We've never really talked except occasionally and there was no discernible attraction (at least to me) between us. One evening while everyone was upstairs, the cousin and I were hanging out on the living room couch watching TV. In an effort to strike up a conversation to break the silence/tension I asked her how school was going (I already knew from my wife she was having a tough time). She started talking about her issues and how her parents were forcing her onto a particular career path and how that was stressing her out. This really resonated with me since my parents were the same way so I started my talking about my life and how I was trying to make a conscious effort not do the same thing with my kids. This seemed to trigger something in her and she started crying so I put my arm around her to console her (thinking that was the appropriate action for that moment). This caused her to turn towards me and start hugging me and when we broke our embrace she kissed me. Unfortunately I didn't put a stop to things (I think I was too caught in the moment) so we continued making out for a couple of minutes until a noise upstairs broke the "spell". After the shock of what happened wore off it was an awkward situation. We both tried to apologize to each other for what happened, I said something along the lines of it was just stress and no big deal and we agreed to never tell anyone (more on this later). We were never alone together again during that trip so we never talked about what had happened and I haven't seen her since.

I'm currently struggling to process what happened. Recently I've started to think/fantasize (maladaptive daydreaming?) about how far things could have gone had we not been interrupted. During our brief make out session things got hot and heavy (she was rubbing my crotch) and I think if we hadn't stopped we would have ended up having sex. To make things worse, she's attractive (she's an athlete) and making out with her was more intense than anything I've experienced with my wife, even when we first started dating. This had got me thinking about my marriage and questioning how satisfied I'm in it (my wife had been the only person I had kissed up until that point). I love my wife and kids and I know telling her what happened will end the marriage. Side note: we have a "don't tell policy", my wife's actual words, where if one of us were to stray and we still want to remain in the marriage we should not tell the other person (Side note 2: I don't have any evidence/suspicion that my wife has strayed). I feel like I want to stay in my marriage but these thoughts of what could have been and all the potential relationships/hookups I've missed out on due to my ASD are driving me crazy.

Another problem is that I've come to learn about the true extent of this girl's mental issues. It turns out she had been in a deep depression, was on suicide watch and had been taking medication when we had made out. I genuinely feel bad for her since I can relate to the issues she's having with her parents, but I'm concerned about her mental stability and if she would tell anyone about what happened, or worse, accuse me of doing something wrong. I have no way of contacting her (not that I'd know what to say) and the paranoia around her possibly spilling the beans is starting to eat away at me as well.

I've thought about seeing a therapist, but can't bring myself to do it. Talking to an actual person about my issues makes me feel like they're judging me (its hard to explain), so I'm not sure what to do...



Twilightprincess
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09 May 2019, 1:47 pm

This is a really complex situation which makes it difficult to know exactly what advice to give you. That’s probably why you haven’t gotten a response yet.

You might want to think about seeing a counselor about this. They hear it all, so he or she won’t judge you too harshly. It would help you process some of the things you’re feeling and clear up some of the confusion.

If you love your wife and want to be with her, you might want to find ways to spice up your marriage and try new things. If you both work on developing a more satisfying sex life, you might think less about the women you could’ve been with.



magz
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09 May 2019, 2:11 pm

I agree, working it out with a therapist is likely to help. A therapist is to help one process their complex feelings.


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Gromit
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10 May 2019, 1:29 pm

wtfjusthappened wrote:
I feel like I want to stay in my marriage but these thoughts of what could have been and all the potential relationships/hookups I've missed out on due to my ASD are driving me crazy.

Emotions often are not reasonable, and it sounds like yours got two things mixed up, missing out because of ASD and missing out because you are married. Is the regret over missed relationships because of ASD getting attached to regret over your marriage preventing that opportunity now?

If that is the problem, a possible solution is to keep reminding yourself that leaving your wife would not make your ASD go away. If you're right that your ASD made you miss those chances, it can do the same again. That would mean your marriage is not taking away many opportunities because you have fewer of those anyway. Do you think that would make the thought of missing out bother you less?

Also, Twilightprincess and magz are right. A counselor or therapist can give you more competent advice.



MrsPeel
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10 May 2019, 10:56 pm

I don't think that was enough to screw up your marriage... unless you want it to.

This sounds like you are rarely one for intimate conversations - so when you fell into one it got you a bit confused.

Maybe what you are missing from your marriage is related to a lack of emotional intimacy of that sort. It's very common that we forget to have in-depth conversations with our spouses. You might need to arrange a quiet dinner date and/or walk along the beach with your wife and see what happens?