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cubedemon6073
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24 Mar 2011, 1:57 pm

I am going to have to be the aspie voice of dissent but I have a problem with some of the things my fellow aspies have said on here and may be doing in their current relationship. We are always complaining that our NT partners are trying to make us into something we're not. Starrygrrl, you said the NT wife needs to fully adjust to the husband. I'm paraphrasing here. I'm sorry but I'm going to have to defend the NT wives. Are we not trying to make them into something they're not as well. Deep down are we not trying to turn them into an aspie themselves. I'm sorry but the argument has to go both ways. The NT wives can't be something they're not either. I believe it is completely unfair and unreasonable to ask of them to do what we complain about them doing to us.

My question is are there mutually beneficial solutions for all of us in which we all can be happy and none of us are hurting the other? There has to be.



Lene
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24 Mar 2011, 2:06 pm

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Are we not trying to make them into something they're not as well. Deep down are we not trying to turn them into an aspie themselves. I'm sorry but the argument has to go both ways.

The NT wives can't be something they're not either. I believe it is completely unfair and unreasonable to ask of them to do what we complain about them doing to us.


100% agree with this.



League_Girl
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24 Mar 2011, 2:11 pm

OMG, I have never noticed the hypocrisy.

I wonder if I am doing the same to my husband. There had been things he had to change like not touching me a lot.



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24 Mar 2011, 2:23 pm

Of course there are mutually beneficial solutions. I think they're found in situations that are not so much focused on finding "the solution" but on very deep levels of acceptance and understanding. A profound sense of "we're not going to be exactly alike here, but we can be highly complementary." I think it takes a very forgiving, accepting, and open-minded NT -- and a very courageous Aspie.


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Northeastern292
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24 Mar 2011, 2:30 pm

cubedemon6073 wrote:
I am going to have to be the aspie voice of dissent but I have a problem with some of the things my fellow aspies have said on here and may be doing in their current relationship. We are always complaining that our NT partners are trying to make us into something we're not. Starrygrrl, you said the NT wife needs to fully adjust to the husband. I'm paraphrasing here. I'm sorry but I'm going to have to defend the NT wives. Are we not trying to make them into something they're not as well. Deep down are we not trying to turn them into an aspie themselves. I'm sorry but the argument has to go both ways. The NT wives can't be something they're not either. I believe it is completely unfair and unreasonable to ask of them to do what we complain about them doing to us.

My question is are there mutually beneficial solutions for all of us in which we all can be happy and none of us are hurting the other? There has to be.


There is, and it isn't easy though. I just dealt with a breakup earlier this week, and sometimes it takes patience and good communication for a good relationship. Compromise, albeit sometimes uncomfortable, is usually the only solution in these cases. But in some ways I regret not changing. I should have changed at least some of my bad behaviors (Posting quotes from Austin Powers will only get you in trouble).



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24 Mar 2011, 2:46 pm

The question now should be where do we draw the line for all this?

If an aspie is literal and they need clear instructions, obviously the NT is going to have the change the way they communicate so there is less misunderstandings. If an NT loves to joke around and is hardly ever serious, that is going to be hard for an aspie. They won't know when the NT is serious so obviously they are going to have to cut back on their humor. But NTs can also say the same about the aspie, learn to speak their language and learn what certain things mean like when an NT wife says "You left your plate in the sink" it means she wants you to put it in the dishwasher. The aspie just can't refuse to not do it because the wife never said "Put your plate in the dishwasher" even though he fully knows what his wife wants because they have been there before. The NT can also say the aspie needs to learn to read between the lines and needs to get used to her teasing and sarcasm.

Let's say someone is a pig, the wife doesn't like clutter and like it when people in her home leave things out, obviously the husband is going to have to change his ways by picking up after himself or it will drive his wife crazy but he can also say it's who he is so get used to it and expect his wife to deal with his clutter and him being a pig. Obviously he would have to leave the mess in his office or in his personal space, not around the house but he can also say she should get used to it because he isn't going to limit places in his home where he can be himself.

Let's say someone has sensory issues, obviously the person without sensory issues is going to have to not do things that her partner can't stand like touch. But she can say he has to learn and deal with it since she likes to touch him out of affection and he has to get used to it.

An aspie has a hard time picking up on body language and the cues, obviously the NT is going to have to tell the aspie what she wants. But she can also say he has to learn her body language because she shouldn't have to tell him.



Jono
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24 Mar 2011, 3:18 pm

cubedemon6073 wrote:
I am going to have to be the aspie voice of dissent but I have a problem with some of the things my fellow aspies have said on here and may be doing in their current relationship. We are always complaining that our NT partners are trying to make us into something we're not. Starrygrrl, you said the NT wife needs to fully adjust to the husband. I'm paraphrasing here. I'm sorry but I'm going to have to defend the NT wives. Are we not trying to make them into something they're not as well. Deep down are we not trying to turn them into an aspie themselves. I'm sorry but the argument has to go both ways. The NT wives can't be something they're not either. I believe it is completely unfair and unreasonable to ask of them to do what we complain about them doing to us.

My question is are there mutually beneficial solutions for all of us in which we all can be happy and none of us are hurting the other? There has to be.


I had a problem with it as well, and I said so in that thread. If you are indeed referring to the thread I'm thinking of.

Yes, I do think that there are some things aspies can compromise on. Just as I think that NT's can compromise on things that we as aspies can't change. The only mutually beneficial solution is if both partners can make compromises to work around the issues.



starygrrl
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24 Mar 2011, 3:33 pm

Taking I am a female on the spectrum in a relationship with a NT male, I have noticed alot of what they often do is well with their husbands on the spectrum is change and compromise on the things which frequently cannot be changed. The very fact is with what has been posted here to complain is many of the NT women on here just have absolutely no grasp of how this effects somebody.

Let me get right down to it, people on the spectrum are less adaptive, especially with regards to social-communications matters than NT, it is part of the disability. The compromises they often want, are often compromises that often cannot be made, they are limitations that need to be accepted.

You may not agree with my perspective, but the truth of the matter is I have found there is a reason why AS female-NT male relationships work better more frequently. What I have found out is the fact while many NT women who come here to complain claim to sacrafice and be flexible, it is not in the ways that count for somebody on the spectrum, which primarily has to do with communication and social matters. What they are mentioning is childcare and other matters. It is not even on the same wavelength with what is key to making a NT-AS relationship work.


Here are the questions:
Have you identified their special interest? Are you taking an interest in it?
Has a social veto been instituted for the person on the spectrum (basically they can opt out of ANY social event, including weddings, funerals, etc)?
Has a form of non-conflict written communication been formed for important issues?
Do you respect thier time to be on thier own to decompress and focus on interests?
Are you placing NT communications expectations on them (expecting them to do certian things, read body language, read between the lines, pick up hints, talking and connecting to people at parties)?
When answering a question are you expecting an honest answer, or what you would like to hear? Guess what, you will always get an honest answer and it may hurt.
Do they have a place to be alone in the living space undisturbed? Do you respect that?



It is pretty simple formula, but it is the thing many of these NT women who complain (not all NT women) do not get. It took some time for my male NT partner to pick up some things, but he eventually started to get it, certian things clicked. He got the special interests and need to be alone early on, but the other things were more subtle. For example I am overstimulated and have a migrane, I will have to skip out on a social event or leave early. I don't do support groups, so don't bother (he like most NT's get alot out of them). Normal NT empathy didn't work for me, he didn't quite grasp this for awhile, eventually he got it though and accepted it even if he doesn't completely understand it. How I do learning is almost always self reflective. It took him awhile to get my sensory issues, but also what situations cause meltdowns, the nature of the sensory issues and how to avoid it (I have synthesia, so sound). He got how socialization has to be interest driven, and non-interest driven activities that are social can be very draining. He got that I was blind to most body language and things have to be clearly communicated.

Alot of the things are not a matter of compromise, and honestly it takes awhile to the other partner, who is not the one with the social-communication disability to adapt.

As somebody stated already, it takes a deeply accepting NT person to recognize and understand the differences in somebody on the spectrum. Alot of NT partners of people on the spectrum are exactly this.

Compromise is a rather weak concept. Acceptance of each other, but also another persons limitations and who they are is more important. Adaptiveness is also important which can involve compromise, but as supposed to compromise knowing the limits of that adaptiveness is very important. But communication, not compromise is ultimately key because you have to be able to discuss those limits without judgement. Compromise to me is overrated, it is something that people stress to much, it works if a person can compromise but not when its over somebodies limits, especially not when somebody has a disability that can have significant limitations (spoon theory does apply to us). Some people think the key to a good relationship is compromise alone, good communication channels and acceptance though are FAR more important.

The fact is many of these relationships are often beyond saving. The level of change in communications, adaptation and acceptance is often simply not possible, because in many ways there are to many burned bridges.

I can go on. The truth is by respecting my limits, adapting to them, and accepting me, ultimately me and my boyfriend became closer. It took us time to get there, but he realized compromise on certian things was often fruitless. It probably helped I accepted his limitations and differences as well, which he never had with his NT partners before, so in that respect it does have to be mutual. When I made a compromise for the sake of him because he wanted me to do it even when I was resistive, it often ended in disaster, he learned if I am resistive it is probably for a reason and to ask why (and not to push things when there was an answer). Things got much better when compromise played a smaller role and acceptance and good communication played a larger one.

I think in this society we focus too much on compromise and not enough on acceptance. The falacy of human life is we can compromise away what people are instead of accepting them for who they are and realizing some things cannot be compromised. I will state it again, the person who is NT is not the one with the disability. The person who is NT if they love them, will accept and adapt to what comes with that disability for that person. There is no love without acceptance, I cannot stress that enough.

I am not saying there is not mutually beneficial solutions, but they have to come with fundimental understanding and acceptance of very real limitations.



starygrrl
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24 Mar 2011, 4:09 pm

League_Girl wrote:
The question now should be where do we draw the line for all this?

If an aspie is literal and they need clear instructions, obviously the NT is going to have the change the way they communicate so there is less misunderstandings. If an NT loves to joke around and is hardly ever serious, that is going to be hard for an aspie. They won't know when the NT is serious so obviously they are going to have to cut back on their humor. But NTs can also say the same about the aspie, learn to speak their language and learn what certain things mean like when an NT wife says "You left your plate in the sink" it means she wants you to put it in the dishwasher. The aspie just can't refuse to not do it because the wife never said "Put your plate in the dishwasher" even though he fully knows what his wife wants because they have been there before. The NT can also say the aspie needs to learn to read between the lines and needs to get used to her teasing and sarcasm.

Let's say someone is a pig, the wife doesn't like clutter and like it when people in her home leave things out, obviously the husband is going to have to change his ways by picking up after himself or it will drive his wife crazy but he can also say it's who he is so get used to it and expect his wife to deal with his clutter and him being a pig. Obviously he would have to leave the mess in his office or in his personal space, not around the house but he can also say she should get used to it because he isn't going to limit places in his home where he can be himself.

Let's say someone has sensory issues, obviously the person without sensory issues is going to have to not do things that her partner can't stand like touch. But she can say he has to learn and deal with it since she likes to touch him out of affection and he has to get used to it.

An aspie has a hard time picking up on body language and the cues, obviously the NT is going to have to tell the aspie what she wants. But she can also say he has to learn her body language because she shouldn't have to tell him.


That is exactly my point. That sometimes these are things that cannot be learned. If an aspie has a hard time picking up body language, saying that he has to learn it when it is not possible to learn is impossible. The reality is changing many of these things is often not just difficult but close to impossible as they are part of the disability. The whole "shouldn't have to tell" is a classic example of that. Frankly with somebody on the spectrum, communication wise, you ALWAYS have to tell and make sure you have clear attention. Again, like I said, NT social-communication expectations it is a big problem.

The second part "the Aspie will have to learn, they will have to deal" with things that relate exactly to the disability is exactly the point. Because frankly they cannot in many cases. They truth of the matter is THIS is why Autism is a disability and the partner who doesn't have the disability does have to accept, alot of social-communication and sensory issues cannot be compromised, or learned, or anything else. They have to be accepted in many cases.

The question being is "why can't they learn" because frequently they can't. There may be clutter because they have sight-object awareness (a sensory issue I have) or executive functioning issues.

The very fact is learning what is the disability aspects and identifying them is very important.



The_Face_of_Boo
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24 Mar 2011, 4:11 pm

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I have found there is a reason why AS female-NT male relationships work better more frequently.


The reason why is that , that in general, the male tend to be more tolerant vis-a-vis the flaws (social skills issues, personality issues, esteem , financial issues , education ,craziness.....). of his female partner than the other way around. Most divorces are initiated by women , so go figure.

For instance, the typical male usually doesn't care much if his female partner has an unsocial lifestyle ,only indoor interests and can barely catch up his social life , while NT women need their males to be catch up with their social needs. Also ,female humans are more hypergamous than males , and AS males can have a lot of issues which might make them not high in status and ....not desirable.

Another matter, many NT wives who come here to complain about their AS husband are usually complaining about non-AS related matters such as you mentioned , like healthcare , domestic violence and alcoholism problems.

And many of those NT wives who come here admit that their husbands aren't officially diagnosed but they really believe that they have AS. Alex should really add a diagnosis called "Believing that my jerk husband is AS" , an option which should be exclusive to the female users , it seems that those wives use AS as scapegoat so they don't feel guilty about themselves when they dump their husbands.

It's really phenomenal how the 90% of the NT-AS marriage problems threads are usually NTwoman-ASman.



Last edited by The_Face_of_Boo on 24 Mar 2011, 6:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

CranialRectosis
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24 Mar 2011, 4:26 pm

"she shouldn't have to tell him."

I was tortured for decades with this phrase by well meaning NTs. That whole way of thinking leads to anger and sorrow.

I am aspie and am married to an NT wife. It is difficult, but we are dedicated.

One thing that is critical is to understand that my ability to respond to her body language etc is totally dependent on my current stress level.

I can handle some sarcasm from my wife because I have classified her as one who uses sarcasm. I have also classified her as a friend, so if she says something I don't much like, I assume that I have misunderstood instead of flying off the handle.

She knows not to use sarcasm minutes after I get home from work. When I am hungry and tired, I have no ability to deal with sarcasm regardless of her intent. I just don't have it in me. ALL exposure to NTs causes me stress. Especially exposure to her. This is not bad, it simply is. No one can run the 100 yd dash well after completing a marathon.

I need twenty minutes in my cave to blast aliens to bits and then I can sit down have dinner and relate to her.

My wife is a credit to me, my family and to her gender. She has the ability to recognize when I can understand the dish in the sink comment and when I cannot.

This is profound. I will never have this ability and all my courage and dedication counts for nothing without it. Because of it, I can overcome anything life throws my way. In this manner, she completes me.

Her greatest strength is where I am weakest. My greatest strengths are where she is weakest. Apart, we are vulnerable and lost. Wisdom is recognizing this and avoiding the power struggle.



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24 Mar 2011, 4:37 pm

I think the key is that the compromises have to go both ways. Not just the NT partner making all the compromises/sacrifices to an unresponsive partner, or the AS partner bending themselves into a pretzel to be "normal" for an NT partner. It should go both ways.


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cubedemon6073
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24 Mar 2011, 5:23 pm

Starrygrrl, I understand what you are saying. If my wife had a loved one who died I would go with her to the funeral despite my sensory and social issues because I love her and I want to comfort her.



cubedemon6073
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24 Mar 2011, 5:50 pm

There is alot of complexity to all of this.



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24 Mar 2011, 5:53 pm

Quote:
Here are the questions:
Have you identified their special interest? Are you taking an interest in it?
Has a social veto been instituted for the person on the spectrum (basically they can opt out of ANY social event, including weddings, funerals, etc)?
Has a form of non-conflict written communication been formed for important issues?
Do you respect thier time to be on thier own to decompress and focus on interests?
Are you placing NT communications expectations on them (expecting them to do certian things, read body language, read between the lines, pick up hints, talking and connecting to people at parties)?
When answering a question are you expecting an honest answer, or what you would like to hear? Guess what, you will always get an honest answer and it may hurt.
Do they have a place to be alone in the living space undisturbed? Do you respect that?


And what about vice versa? What concessions to the NT partner does the aspie give back?

Honestly, I would run a mile if someone gave me a list like that. I want a relationship with someone as an equal, not someone I have to raise as a child and who expects to be excused from adult responsibilities. I think the problem a lot of women make is going into relationships like this in the first place, thinking that things will change over time.

I agree with Boo about a lot of men being more tolerant of quirks in relationships. Doesn't apply to everyone of course.