Partner can't discuss aspergers with me

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Muia
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09 Aug 2019, 7:42 am

Hi everyone,

I recently discovered that I'm on the spectrum (awaiting assessment but I'm 99.9% sure). I've spoken to my partner about this and he believes I am, and that he is something also in his own words (aspergers or ADHD were what he mentioned). We finally understand a lot more about each other (we are very similar but also very different, if that even makes sense) but he has really never masked on the most part, where as I slipped into it most of the time, without even knowing.

I've started talking to him about how things effect me and how I'm letting my mask slip. He always says I don't talk enough or that I've not been honest in the past (I attribute to the masking to some degree) so I've been speaking more. I like being myself more, but I can come across more blunt and argumentative to some people that don't know this discovery about myself.

Anyway to cut a long story short, even though he want's me to talk more, as he says he's more open and honest... I feel like he won't listen when I do. I was talking to him about how it was when I visited relatives, and my social struggles and he just shuts down. He doesn't want to hear it. It feels unfair because of him saying I need to talk more, but it feels like it's only about subjects he's interested in. Speaking about my autism is very important to me, especially as it's so new to me.

He says that I need to stop acting like him (the bluntness and debating rather than just agreeing all the time and pleasing people) because it doesn't help you in life. He's lost jobs because of it. I'm trying to STOP masking all the time as it sends me into depression and drains my energy. From analysing us both, I can still mask and not do things that will mean I lose my job but I'm turning it down in intensity because it's making me physically and mentally ill. He struggles to mask and it can get him into trouble socially and at work.

I'm feeling very deflated because he's encouraging me to carry on masking. I tried explaing I'm not stopping entirely as you need it sometimes in some situations like work.

He also asked why I want an assessment. I'e always been looking and researching in the past before the discovery of aspergers as to why I feel like I do. Depression, anxiety etc. But they never felt right. There was no reason for either of these thing until I found out about autism.

I feel like even though he thought he belives we are both on the spectrum, he won't accept that it causes difficulties for us both in life. They are obvious, but he just doesn't want to hear it. His knowledge of aspergers is that he feels different but thats where it ends. No ackowledgement of difficulties and see's my research as an excuse for being easily tired, like I 'm incapable of things and use it as an excuse. Thats what it feels like to me.

Sorry for the long post but what does everyone think? It's like I can't ackowledge my difficulties around him. I'm so glad for forums and groups I can share these feeling with. I struggle verbally and making the effort with him to talk about this feels like I'm getting it pushed back into my face, as I'm making a real effort.


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rdos
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09 Aug 2019, 8:00 am

First, masking needs to be different in different environments. If you both are on the spectrum, it makes sense that you don't mask when alone or with each other and that you try to be as natural as possible. That doesn't mean you should lose your job or act crazy in social situations where there are NTs present, and so it is still necessary to mask when NTs are around.

Second, talking more doesn't seem like autistic-friendly advice. I always believed that the less I talk the better, and especially in relationships. So, I think that is counter-intuitive and I have no idea why he is pushing that.



Muia
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09 Aug 2019, 8:21 am

I agree that masking is neccessary is some situations and I'm trying to find the right balance. My partner, I suspect has ADHD and aspergers. When he talks about it, he is blunt about it and goes into no details.

The thing is, he can be very talkative (in particular with his special interests) to the point where he drains me. He likes to socialise with friends (and gets energy from this) but doesn't like talking to strangers. He's impulsive and an adrenaline junkie. I'm none of these things. Which makes me think about ADHD. But he also has intense focus on subjects, particualrly things that are more unusual or as he put it 'that most people think are sad'. He has what I'd call meltdows too. But it shows more externally than how I have meltodowns.

I think he's looking at communication being healthy in a relationship, and getting understanding is great. I just don't think he even acknowledges the difficulties and that there are things you can do to help somewhat.


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Mona Pereth
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10 Aug 2019, 12:37 am

rdos wrote:
Second, talking more doesn't seem like autistic-friendly advice. I always believed that the less I talk the better, and especially in relationships. So, I think that is counter-intuitive and I have no idea why he is pushing that.

I think you are probably unusual in this regard even among (verbal) autistic people.

Of course there are plenty of nonverbal autistic people, and, among those who are verbal, there are some, like you, who prefer to talk as little as possible.

But there are also plenty of autistic people who enjoy talking (though in different ways from the kinds of talk that NTs typically enjoy), and there are plenty of others who don't necessarily enjoy talking but for whom talking (or perhaps writing) is the best way to problem-solve.


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nick007
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10 Aug 2019, 5:34 pm

Mona Pereth wrote:
rdos wrote:
Second, talking more doesn't seem like autistic-friendly advice. I always believed that the less I talk the better, and especially in relationships. So, I think that is counter-intuitive and I have no idea why he is pushing that.

I think you are probably unusual in this regard even among (verbal) autistic people.

Of course there are plenty of nonverbal autistic people, and, among those who are verbal, there are some, like you, who prefer to talk as little as possible.
:?: :wink:
But there are also plenty of autistic people who enjoy talking (though in different ways from the kinds of talk that NTs typically enjoy), and there are plenty of others who don't necessarily enjoy talking but for whom talking (or perhaps writing) is the best way to problem-solve.
I've been told lots of times as a kid that I needed to talk more but when I did I got in trouble or got bullied for talking too much, talking at the wrong times, &/or saying the wrong things. It felt like I was [email protected] if I do & [email protected] if I don't. Anyways I tend to be fairly quiet with everyone offline but I can talk a lot online sometimes. My current girlfriend who's also on the spectrum wishes I'd talk more sometimes about serious stuff instead of just keeping quiet & letting things build up till we have a big argument/fight. Part of the reason I don't talk about that stuff with her when I probably should is cuz she's dealing with a lot of various issues & I don't wanna upset her. I guess there's a certain balance & skill to knowing when you should talk about something & when you shouldn't & I just cant get it rite. I do think Muia's partner is being kinda hypocritical by saying that she should talk more & then not wanting to talk when she does. He needs to learn that talking within a relationship can not be completely on his terms. That is one-sided & things should be more even & balanced. I wonder if there's a way you can explain that to him Muia in a way that he'd understand. Perhaps you can get him to agree to you both seeing a couples counselor but I'd only suggest that if your partner really refuses to listen after trying & pushing a lot to get him to understand & start being more considerate on this issue.


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