Do Aspies miss their partners?

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Europegirl
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05 Jan 2023, 9:55 pm

Hello! I have a question for you. I've been with my diagnosed Aspie-boyfriend for two years and it's in many respects good: We can talk for hours, have projects, love to cuddle and are good at talking through things. We are in our early 50ies. There is one thing however, I find hurtful: He does not seem to miss me. We don't live together but we live in the same city. He's been away for three weeks, comes back and instead of rushing to see me (like I would do) he has other things to do and will see me 2, 3 days later. We usually talk every other day, and it if cancel he does not mind at all. It's: oh ok. For me, missing and craving my partner is such an integral part of being in love that him being this way puts me off completely. I don't want to ask him about this right now, as I'm so upset that I've told him I will be available again in two weeks as to calm down, which of course was no problem. Would be great to hear your perspective. It is very hard for me to believe he loves me, like he says. Could this be an Autism-thing?



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05 Jan 2023, 10:40 pm

Some people place a higher priority on what they believe needs to be done than on dealing with other people's feelings.  I, for one, place a high priority on unpacking and getting settled in than on embracing every individual present as I walk in the door.  Of course, my wife is the exception -- when we miss each other, she has the highest priority -- but even she has grown used to my need to set things in order before settling down with her.

Is this an "autism thing"?  I do not know.

I do believe, however, that every person is responsible only for his or her own feelings, and not for the feelings of anyone else -- personal choice aside.  Expecting someone else to respond to your emotional "needs" -- especially if that person is autistic -- may be a way of setting yourself up for disappointment and conflict.


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MissMary227
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05 Jan 2023, 10:47 pm

Europegirl wrote:
Hello! I have a question for you. I've been with my diagnosed Aspie-boyfriend for two years and it's in many respects good: We can talk for hours, have projects, love to cuddle and are good at talking through things. We are in our early 50ies. There is one thing however, I find hurtful: He does not seem to miss me. We don't live together but we live in the same city. He's been away for three weeks, comes back and instead of rushing to see me (like I would do) he has other things to do and will see me 2, 3 days later. We usually talk every other day, and it if cancel he does not mind at all. It's: oh ok. For me, missing and craving my partner is such an integral part of being in love that him being this way puts me off completely. I don't want to ask him about this right now, as I'm so upset that I've told him I will be available again in two weeks as to calm down, which of course was no problem. Would be great to hear your perspective. It is very hard for me to believe he loves me, like he says. Could this be an Autism-thing?


Hi. Do you spend time together in person? Or just afar?


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IsabellaLinton
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05 Jan 2023, 11:37 pm

It’s not in the diagnostic criteria.

I guess it depends on the person like everything else.



kitesandtrainsandcats
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05 Jan 2023, 11:49 pm

Quote:
Could this be an Autism-thing?


Absolutely could be. Might also be other and/or additional factors in play.
Is very difficult to make a determination without having years of experience knowing him.

But I can offer the following ...

There is the thing that men are different from women.
And that aspie men and women are different from neuotypical men and women.

Europegirl wrote:
There is one thing however, I find hurtful: He does not seem to miss me.

Quote:
For me, missing and craving my partner is such an integral part of being in love that him being this way puts me off completely

That connects to a common difficulty in mixed couples of aspie/autistic & neurotypical.
It is like getting an Apple Computer and a Windows computer to run the same program code ...
They Won't.
They Can't.
Their brains are different.
Different in processing and frequently literally different in physical structure.
You certainly can end up getting the same results from the 2 different operating systems, but they are each going to get there in the way which works for their unique individual beings.

:arrow: Aspies & neurotypicals both have emotions and feelings.
And frequently the same ones.

The hiccup is ...

That aspies and neurotypicals very often do the having of and do the expressing of those feelings differently.
Sometimes dramatically differently.

It is like first contact between civilizations from different galaxies.
(hence the name of this forum)
(we literally are on a planet where the resident majority civilization has very different ways from our own)


Quote:
It is very hard for me to believe he loves me, like he says.

It is not a 100% guaranteed it is universally always like this for every person all the time and every time, but when one of us aspies/autistics tells you a something, it IS that thing.

A general trend is that we don't hint, we don't speak between the lines, we don't read between the lines, and that what we say is what we mean, it is not less than we mean, and it is not more than we mean.
It IS what we mean.
Plain language.
Face value.

:arrow: Now, another factor could be that thing about transitions and changes.
We aspies, autistics, frequently need time to process and digest changes and transitions; a different and often greater amount of time from the typical neurotypical person.
Sort of "My ways of doing life were disrupted while I was on the trip, let me get them reestablished and then I will have a reestablished foundation from which I can do other things."

Another possible factor in the mix is that having a dating relationship is a different thing from having a marriage relationship. A marriage has intersecting responsibilities and interconnected commitments which dating relationships do not.

:arrow: Now, back to the beginning where I said there could be other factors in the mix,
I'm gonna talk about me for a bit.

When I was a child Dad was in the Navy.
He retired after 28 years.
Did some math.
And discovered that of those 28 years he had spent a total of 13 years worth of time out at sea.

At this point on the calendar I can't recall anything I can identify as a notable feeling of missing him when he was out at sea for 3 to 6 months at a time.
I loved him and was happy when he returned.

And I do remember greatly enjoying the feeling of "my family is complete" when he was home between deployments.
I also do not recall ever thinking to tell anyone about that feeling.
The thought to say that to someone, anyone, simply did not happen.

What reasons for that, I do not know & there is probably no way now to tell.

:arrow: But a thing I do know now & can tell,

is that in the end, it was normal and natural for people to come and go and be gone.

Nothing remarkable in it.

:arrow: Also,

Is that after having to cut way back on doing things in life as an adult after acquiring ME/CFS and becoming unable to work, over time,

I realized how always stressed I was, 24/7/365 in the adult working world

and then,

I saw, realized, how similarly stressed I was 24/7/365 as a child.

and mixed in with that,

is the time my cousin Steve said to me, "You never talk about feelings, only information and facts."

Some years after that I was diagnosed autistic as an adult.

Just merely dealing with the 24/7/365 stress of daily life and being as an aspie/autistic in a very alien neurotypical world may well have been consuming energy from the parts of my being which would otherwise have been, and even now be, available to process and tell about feeling and emotion.

:D Well, that's what I can offer in after 10pm thoughts and ponderings from this small midwestern farm burg.


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06 Jan 2023, 5:00 am

Europegirl wrote:
Hello! I have a question for you. I've been with my diagnosed Aspie-boyfriend for two years and it's in many respects good: We can talk for hours, have projects, love to cuddle and are good at talking through things. We are in our early 50ies. There is one thing however, I find hurtful: He does not seem to miss me. We don't live together but we live in the same city. He's been away for three weeks, comes back and instead of rushing to see me (like I would do) he has other things to do and will see me 2, 3 days later. We usually talk every other day, and it if cancel he does not mind at all. It's: oh ok. For me, missing and craving my partner is such an integral part of being in love that him being this way puts me off completely. I don't want to ask him about this right now, as I'm so upset that I've told him I will be available again in two weeks as to calm down,

Two weeks? That's quite a long time.

Europegirl wrote:
which of course was no problem. Would be great to hear your perspective. It is very hard for me to believe he loves me, like he says. Could this be an Autism-thing?

This sounds to me like normal variation in how much people crave the physical presence of their partner. Autistic people vary quite a bit in this regard, and so do NT's.

A lack of emotional neediness does NOT necessarily mean a lack of love. It is certainly possible to care deeply about another person without craving that person's physical presence 24/7. As far as I can tell, lots of people are able to do that, at least after the initial "honeymoon" phase of a relationship.

If I were you, I would be concerned that he might feel smothered by you being so much more emotionally needy than he is. I think it might be in your best interests to consider whether there might be any workable ways to reduce your own emotional neediness. For example: Do you also have any close platonic friends? Or do you look to a romantic relationship to satisfy ALL of your emotional needs?


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Joe90
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06 Jan 2023, 6:05 am

A lot of autistic men crave a girlfriend but then aren't quite sure what to do when they have one, which can be disheartening for the girl (autistic or not). The key is to try not to take it personally. Perhaps he likes time to himself or perhaps he is missing you but doesn't really say.
Autistic people are often obliged (by society) to follow social rules very logically, so maybe someone told him not to come across as too possessive to a girl, so he's sticking to that and scared to break the social rule. Usually when autistics break a social rule it comes down bad on them even if it's harmless or unintended or not that big of a deal, they're still made to feel bad about it.

As a female on the spectrum I don't follow social rules logically, I go by intuition (my only downfall is impulse). I do miss my boyfriend when I'm not with him and not only I feel it immensely but I also tell him. It doesn't make me possessive, and I'd know if I was being possessive. But I've never been possessive even though I overly express my love towards him.


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06 Jan 2023, 6:15 am

I’m not an Aspie.

Sometimes, I “miss” people. But a yearning for companionship is rare, though I feel delighted when I hang out with friends without argument.

If I feel secure in my loving relationship, I don’t “miss” her when she’s gone. Although if we break up, I mourn the breakup.



Quantum duck
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06 Jan 2023, 8:02 am

I love my husband. Sometimes I miss him.

But I am an extreme introvert - which can be a totally independent thing. I find people exhausting. My perfect vacation would be two weeks in a cabin on a beach with nice weather, a calm reasonable warm ocean, adequate unprocessed food that can be eaten without prep (maybe a pan, some butter, and some eggs) and no sight or sound of another person. My perfect realistic vacation would be if my Dh would go away for two weeks and absolutely no one would call or come by. Not even the meter reader or a package. By the end of the two weeks I would miss him enough to want him back. At least for a while. Then he should go play golf or something.



Europegirl
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06 Jan 2023, 8:45 am

Of course, my wife is the exception -- when we miss each other, she has the highest priority -- but even she has grown used to my need to set things in order before settling down with her.

Is this an "autism thing"?  I do not know.

Yes maybe not.

I do believe, however, that every person is responsible only for his or her own feelings, and not for the feelings of anyone else -- personal choice aside.  Expecting someone else to respond to your emotional "needs" -- especially if that person is autistic -- may be a way of setting yourself up for disappointment and conflict.[/color][/quote]

Hm, I think in a relationship emotional needs should get largely fulfilled. But maybe I have such needs that he cannot fulfill.



MissMary227
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06 Jan 2023, 8:46 am

Europegirl wrote:
Of course, my wife is the exception -- when we miss each other, she has the highest priority -- but even she has grown used to my need to set things in order before settling down with her.

Is this an "autism thing"?  I do not know.

Yes maybe not.

I do believe, however, that every person is responsible only for his or her own feelings, and not for the feelings of anyone else -- personal choice aside.  Expecting someone else to respond to your emotional "needs" -- especially if that person is autistic -- may be a way of setting yourself up for disappointment and conflict.[/color]

Hm, I think in a relationship emotional needs should get largely fulfilled. But maybe I have such needs that he cannot fulfill.


Hi. Do you spend time together in person? Or just afar?


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Last edited by MissMary227 on 06 Jan 2023, 8:47 am, edited 1 time in total.

Europegirl
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06 Jan 2023, 8:47 am

kraftiekortie wrote:
I’m not an Aspie.

Sometimes, I “miss” people. But a yearning for companionship is rare, though I feel delighted when I hang out with friends without argument.

If I feel secure in my loving relationship, I don’t “miss” her when she’s gone. Although if we break up, I mourn the breakup.


Thank you. Yeah, I guess that what I expected. I don't miss him anymore either. It makes me too vulnerable.



Europegirl
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06 Jan 2023, 8:49 am

Joe90 wrote:
A lot of autistic men crave a girlfriend but then aren't quite sure what to do when they have one, which can be disheartening for the girl (autistic or not). The key is to try not to take it personally. Perhaps he likes time to himself or perhaps he is missing you but doesn't really say.
Autistic people are often obliged (by society) to follow social rules very logically, so maybe someone told him not to come across as too possessive to a girl, so he's sticking to that and scared to break the social rule. Usually when autistics break a social rule it comes down bad on them even if it's harmless or unintended or not that big of a deal, they're still made to feel bad about it.

As a female on the spectrum I don't follow social rules logically, I go by intuition (my only downfall is impulse). I do miss my boyfriend when I'm not with him and not only I feel it immensely but I also tell him. It doesn't make me possessive, and I'd know if I was being possessive. But I've never been possessive even though I overly express my love towards him.


Thank you for your answer. I guess it is really individual and has only little to do with being autistic. And it might have to do with him not loving me in a romantic way, but I dont know.



Europegirl
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06 Jan 2023, 8:55 am

Two weeks? That's quite a long time.

Yes it is. I communicated it in a non-aggressive way and he no problem with it.

Europegirl wrote:
which of course was no problem. Would be great to hear your perspective. It is very hard for me to believe he loves me, like he says. Could this be an Autism-thing?

This sounds to me like normal variation in how much people crave the physical presence of their partner. Autistic people vary quite a bit in this regard, and so do NT's.

Yes, i guess, it's an individual thing.

A lack of emotional neediness does NOT necessarily mean a lack of love. It is certainly possible to care deeply about another person without craving that person's physical presence 24/7. As far as I can tell, lots of people are able to do that, at least after the initial "honeymoon" phase of a relationship.

I'm not talking 24/7. He was away for three weeks.

If I were you, I would be concerned that he might feel smothered by you being so much more emotionally needy than he is. I think it might be in your best interests to consider whether there might be any workable ways to reduce your own emotional neediness. For example: Do you also have any close platonic friends? Or do you look to a romantic relationship to satisfy ALL of your emotional needs?[/quote]

I don't find it needy to want to see your partner asap after three weeks of absence. I am very independent, have many good friends and things to do on my own. I just find it believe that a partner who does not miss me loves me in any way.



Europegirl
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06 Jan 2023, 8:57 am

IsabellaLinton wrote:
It’s not in the diagnostic criteria.

I guess it depends on the person like everything else.


Thank you. I was not looking for diagnostic criteria but more for anecdotal evidence. But I guess it is like you say, indivdual, not necessarily a function of him being Aspie and maybe a function of him not loving me or maybe not.



MissMary227
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06 Jan 2023, 8:58 am

Hi.

Since you are not answering my question, I will assume you are not seeing each other in person.....I have found there are folks who have such a strong imagination that they can think they are 'in a relationship' even though it is just something they feel from afar, and maybe have never seen or been with the person of their affection. Strange but true.

As for me, I need to see someone face-to-face to call it a real relationship. I feel like this for every kind of relationship, even my kin. If I cannot see you in person, I don't consider it real. The only exception for this I make is for my sweet sister in Texas. She has tried living here and cannot stand the cold. She is in a committed relationship with another girl although they are not sexually intimate and are living together. It really hurts my feelings she puts this girl above me, her sister, but I love her through that bad feeling. And of course, we have seen each other a ton in life, just not right now.

For example, my secret admirers might think they are 'in a relationship' with me, but they are not. Until we meet in person and have face-to-face time and discuss it, it isn't real. Oh, it can be a real online friendship, but not a real relationship.

God did not intend for His people to relate through the air only. He meant for us to live amongst each other supporting each other daily.

~Peace and love, mary


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