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Jensen
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29 Jun 2015, 9:26 am

I eventually contacted my cousin after many years. Both he and his wife seemed pleased about it. She wanted a chatting-sister, but I had to disappoint her. She still calls most days to have her five minutes. That´s ok.
Problem: I am not supposed to be there, when my cousin is home.
Reason: "You take my time with my husband" (he works a lot), "My nerves".

The three of us have dined a few times over the years, celebrated Christmas together once.
Last week we had a midweek evening over a meal made of "nothing" from both kitchens and it was very nice. His wife seemed a little tense.
Last week, I saw them after dinner over a computer problem. I was to be given the codes by my cousin as his wife doesn´t do computerstuff. We had a cup and some pancakes. All was well.
Suddenly it is wrong. She said, that I am clingy, overstays my welcome, steals their time together.

I had to explain, that I am just happy to be in contact with my cousin again.
I explained, that I don´t read her mind. I don´t read between the lines and when I hear: "Stay for another cup", I don´t understand: "Go". I asked her to talk straight.

I don´t know if I really screwed up, when I felt welcome.
My cousin and I really get along in a kitchen and he seemed glad of it. We simply like each others company.
I tried to make his wife join us, so she wouldn´t feel left out, but she wouldn´t.

Have I screwed up - or do we have a case of jealous wife?

I think, that I should take it up a bit, when I collect the codes, by asking them to totally both, before they invite me. They have little time together and there is no use for creating extra tension.
Then I´ll disclose to them about my AS, explain, what it is and ask them to be very direct and one-layered in their communication towards me.

Would that be a diplomatic way to go about it or would I piss them off?


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kraftiekortie
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29 Jun 2015, 9:34 am

Just tell her, bluntly, that he is your cousin, and not an object of your desires.

After all, you're not into incest.



Jensen
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29 Jun 2015, 9:50 am

Well, but I don´t think, she is down THAT alley.
I think, she wants all the time, she can get with him and not share him with anyone.

She has a pension (bi-polar and something else), so she feels lonely. She has no interests and she only leaves the house if she must (become afraid), so she is longing for others to fill the gap.
Every hour with her husband is important to her.
Then I come along,- on full wavelength with him.... Ay, there´s the rub.

(We´ve had the discussion before: Her: "I want some time with my husband". Me: "I love to know you both, and I am very happy to be in contact with my cousin again. We were kids together, you know").

Would you do, what I suggested before? I just want us to get along.
I´ve got to say something.


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Last edited by Jensen on 29 Jun 2015, 9:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

kraftiekortie
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29 Jun 2015, 9:54 am

I think she has emotional problems which you can't resolve.

She "wants her cake and eat it too." She wants you, she wants her husband, and she doesn't want you both at the same time.

This is a hard situation.

I think the best approach, like you stated, is to speak to her about this--at the same time, reassure her that you'll never come in the way of any time with her husband.



Jensen
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29 Jun 2015, 10:01 am

Thank you, wise man :)
I´ll do so, even if it´s scary.
I must find a way to formulate it, so no one feels offended.

My cousin doesn´t know about our disaggreement, so I´ll have to be careful not to stir anything.
I´ll fully take it upon myself.


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nerdygirl
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29 Jun 2015, 10:49 am

It sounds like your cousin's wife is jealous of you spending time with your cousin, not because she thinks badly of you but because she has emotional problems and feels lonely, like you said. She seems very clingy and "territorial" about time with her husband, wanting him all to herself to meet some kind of need she has that is not getting met in other ways. Maybe she doesn't have the emotional strength to make more friends for some reason.

I have a couple of suggestions, but I'm not sure they will work either for you or her. If you think they might be worth a try, here they are...

Try spending more time alone with just her. If she feels you are a true friend and confidante, she may feel more confident in herself and loved, which may allow her to "give away" some her time with her husband so you can enjoy time with him too.

Another idea which has seemed to work well in situations I have faced is being pretty blunt about discussing the topic. (You don't need to mention jealousy.) Just say, "I know that you want as much time with your husband as possible, but I also would like to spend time with my cousin. Can we work out an arrangement that will meet both our needs?" Then discuss how much time/how often you can see your cousin that will allow you time together but not make her upset. Maybe once a month you have dinner together, or something like that. My guess is that if you go this route and stick to the agreement, she will warm up to the idea of "sharing" her husband and eventually that arrangement will include more time for you.



SocOfAutism
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29 Jun 2015, 10:54 am

Yeah I agree. I would just say that you have AS and don't understand "polite talk" and would prefer that they be very direct with you. Say you really enjoy their company and appreciate the renewed family relationship, and for them to please tell you very clearly how much time is appropriate for you to be over and how often.

Most people respond well when you put things in the context of "I have this problem, can you help me?" Because it makes them seem generous and good. Everyone likes to be seen as generous and good.



Jensen
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29 Jun 2015, 12:15 pm

Yes, you´re both right. I have been spending a lot of time with her - though not lately. She is a bit frustrated, I think.
I have told her, that I want to see my cousin a little, but it didn´t go in well.
I will just explain about my AS and ask them to express things to me clearly.

Thank you :)


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Jensen
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05 Jul 2015, 2:52 pm

So, I had my talk with them. They smiled and seemed relaxed. I was to come and get the codes. Suddenly I was invited for supper and we had a totally good time.
When I said goodbye, I wanted to hug them slightly as usual and felt an ever so slight stiffening.
Today I dropped by with a bag of strawberries from the garden and some cream for them. I told them, I was on my way home, but got invited for a glass of wine.
Everything seemed relaxed, but when I suggested, that I´d make them an italian dinner, they looked worried until I promised, "After your holiday" (5 weeks). Maybe I was the one, who was tense, because I took care not to miss any signs. When we said goodbye, I didn´t try to get too close.
My cousin is friendly, but doesn´t have that very-very welcoming look, and his wife looks very determined.
It is as if a new element of control has crept in.
I´m kind of sad about it. Maybe it´ll change, - maybe not.


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kraftiekortie
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05 Jul 2015, 2:59 pm

Hey Jensen,

Just be mellow about it. Don't take it too seriously.

Just go with the flow. If you do, you'll be okay.

Most people, for whatever reason, don't like things to get too emotional most of the time.

They get scared, and that's why they get turned off to people who take stuff seriously.



Jensen
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05 Jul 2015, 5:02 pm

Yes, that´s the difficult part.
Now, that I´ve become very careful, I don´t suppose things will be as relaxed again.
Been there before.


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