Just found out my husband has Asperger's Syndrome.

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ASWife
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24 Jul 2008, 4:18 pm

Hi there! I'm totally new to this but am glad to have finally found a place to talk about the situation with my AS husband. Sometimes I feel like I'm totally going crazy! We found out after we were married that he has AS. He's a very good mimic but I always knew there was something different about him. He just kept coming around and I became very dependent on him... He's a wonderful man and would do anything for me. Well, I say anything, but, he is very limited in his ability to understand how I'm "feeling"... I think my biggest thing is loneliness - not having that emotional connection that I so long for. But who's to blame? Certainly not him. He can't help that he has AS. So, I deal with the loneliness, AND the guilt of feeling selfish... My husband is quite the talker and very intelligent, but when it comes to talking about personal issues, he'd rather do just about anything else. He will listen to me if I say okay, I need you to listen to me. Other than that, I can make a comment about something and he just goes off on a long, drawn-out explanation or opinion about it. I have found myself keeping quiet unless necessary. I could go on and on but just wanted to get a little bit off my chest. Thanks for listening... Jaxtapose, I am sorry for you but I hope that since you found out about the AS that he is trying to work on the way he treats you... My husband can be very touchy too so I really have to watch how I approach/answer him. It's like being on constant alert :(



Yupa
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24 Jul 2008, 8:11 pm

I kind of agree that his having Asperger's syndrome isn't really an excuse for him being angry and neglectful, although it might be that he has stressful issues he's facing at work that he doesn't have anywhere to take out and is thus redirecting those issues to you.
What bothered me most was the bit where you said he didn't really seem to care when you pursued a relationship with someone else. Any man who truly cared about maintaining a stable relationship would go into a long phase of panic at that point and would probably ask what he could do to fix the relationship.
But you really need to talk with him about his faults, and please, whatever you do, don't let Asperger's Syndrome become an excuse for his bullying behaviours and apparent lack of devotion. That's not what Asperger's Syndrome is.



1Oryx2
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17 Aug 2008, 11:19 pm

Please do your best and welcome to the world of Autism. :D



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13 Feb 2009, 12:28 pm

This is a very interesting topic. I think that I have AS and my husband suspects that he may have it, as well. I would say that he most certainly does have AS.

Long story short (if that is possible), we still have marital issues that are similar to the issues that NT women are describing having with their AS husbands. Maybe a large component to the problems is gender? Women with AS do present their symptoms differently than men with AS. Also, no one ever said that all people with AS are like Data from Star Trek!! I would argue that we all feel a full range of emotions, we just suck at seeing those emotions in others and suck even more at talking about our emotions. This would cause problems with anyone!! ! NT or otherwise!! !

Anyone have any comments to this idea?



lovecholie
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13 Feb 2009, 12:46 pm

Wow, your husband sounds like me in my relationship. If he's anything like me, I always end up feeling bad as long as it's evident that it bothers the other person. So let him know that he hurt your feelings. As long as you take a deep breath, and very calmly say so. At least, that's what my boyfriend seems to do.

I tell my NT boyfriend that life for me is like holding a really big heavy box. If something is on my mind and I need to focus on that one thing, anything distracting me will be a bother and seems extraneous. Get him at a time where he doesn't seem preoccupied. Hope this helps. :oops:



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13 Feb 2009, 1:50 pm

Hi!

I'm happy you're so supportive of him. But I do feel like I should mention something.

AS is not an excuse for verbal abuse, if it is intentional. If you think your husband might just be a jerk (which is always a remote possibility) then you should probably get out of the relationship.

I have a lot of caring male Aspie friends; my dad is an incredibly warm and sympathetic father and a good husband to my mom; so I think insensitive behavior is a problem your man needs to work on. You shouldn't take it just because he may be a spectrumer

Of course, if he really is Aspie, it's very possible he does just have trouble knowing what's hurtful or detecting your feelings, in which case he doesn't mean to hurt you and does deserve to catch a break. (I know I have that problem myself!)

I just want you to be careful. I know we spectrumers can be great stressors on our spouses at times.

Love & luck!


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2plus2
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03 Mar 2009, 9:33 pm

Hello. I have soo much to say. My son 7 was recently dx with aspergers, adhd, sid, and language discrepensies. I am fighting for him in school. He will be the best he can be. This is not the "bad" part. I have been married for almost a decade; I always thought dh had add and was off a little. I would just say he missed common sense (him not anyone else so not to offend). Here are just a few examples: We got married, I found out he had been lieing about something, no guilt from him. We had 2 miscarriages and he did not understand why I was upset and he showed no feelings, not like one might expect, i.e. i have to go out of town go to your mom's. I could cry and he just looks at me. Our other son was very ill his first year, and I would be at the hospital come home, try to take nap, go back, while caring for our other son, and he would get frustrated at me saying everything is fine why are you scared or whatever it may be. After years of being told I was over reacting and emotionally being shut out and left to do everything except go to his job. He even signed up for law school w/o telling me while our son was ill, and I herniated a disc. Never home and couldn' see why this would bug me, but the most pronounced thing was when I was majorly depressed and I was in bed crying and he explained very non chalantly house I could kill myself, vividly with reasons why and not to do it a certain way. He does not get angry really he gets sarcastic or arrogant. A therapist even asked him how he could just ignore the needs of his wife and kids. He can't get it. I feel overwhelmed and lonely in our marriage. I can easily describe it as a roommate marriage, and in ways as if I am a caregiver to him although he has a good job.

Problem being, I can't stay in a depressed state of being, it's not good for our kids. My son needs structure and a warm nurturing, proactive environment. I need a connection with my dh. I am going to see a therapist to sort things out for myself...

I feel hypocritical because, I could and would never give up on my son, and I know this all exists, I am a teacher and work with special needs. My dh doen't get that there is an issue, he doesn't get how important the help our son needs is. He thinks our 7 yo should be able to say "crappy" and that if he's playing video games and has not eaten by 2pm, he must not be hungry. (I'm out of the house if this happens)... I won't ramble anymore, but I have a lot to think about and measure. thanks for letting me vent.

me
:?



wyattsmom
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31 Mar 2009, 6:22 pm

I recently found this out too! It also explains so much. My husband claimed he was SO tired after our son was born and fell asleep. He tends to be neglectful and lacking in those types of areas, as well as a workaholic/hobby-obsessed, and we too have had our share of issues.

Also just found out our 2 year old son has it. It is so nice to know it, but like you, I also feel extremely overwhelmed. I just joined today...welcome! ;)

Amanda



semota
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13 Apr 2009, 3:59 pm

Jaxtapose wrote:
Hello,

I'm new to this and I am confused. I just found out yesterday that my husband might have Asperger's Syndrome. That would explain ALOT! We have been married for 3 years and we have a young daughter together. He has always seemed like a jerk who doesn't care. He has been verbally abusive at times and me too.

When I was in the hospital giving birth to our daughter he seemed annoyed and he kept saying that he was tired and wanted to sleep! I had no help from him and I felt so alone. This was just the start. He seems only interested in his computer and programming.

After a few years of his seeming neglect I started an online relationship with another man. My husband didn't like this but didn't really seem too upset. My Father said that maybe he doesn't love me. I felt so bad. We tried marriage counseling a few times but as soon as we left he would yell at me for some problems "I had".

Then last night he dropped a bomb, "I think I have Asperger's." Wow, what a relief in a way to know that he doesn't necessarily hate me but maybe it is just stemming from his condition??? I cannot do enough research on this topic as I want to know more so that I can understand him and help him in any way possible.

I told him that I was so happy that he shared this with me. I also told him that I support him 210%. I just want to start again with him so that maybe we can grow old together. :wink:


Hm, I always wondered when I read posts like this... if the Aspie guy was such a jerk, why would anyone get married to him and have babies with him?



relieved
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13 Jun 2009, 10:42 am

I have just figured out that my husband of 25 years has AS, and it is the most tremendous RELIEF to have an answer to explain his behavior. Like so many people that have posted here already, I was facing the decision of leaving him because I just could not live with what appeared to be his self-centeredness and lack of empathy any more, now that our nest is empty and the issues are so much more glaringly obvious. Whether he is ever diagnosed or not, now I know that the only reason he does these things that have been so hurtful to me all these years is because he simply can not do any better -- unless hopefully we can work together to teach him skills that he has not been able to develop on his own. I know I need to adjust the way I ask for things I need from him. Knowledge is power!! I haven't seen much material posted about sexual issues, but that's been a big one for us; to me he seems to relate to me sexually as though he were 12 years old -- I don't feel like there is an adult, a full-blooded man to respond to, and that is a tough one. I just am so glad to hear all your stories, so I feel less crazy & alone :) and I can't wait to find more insight and strategies to learning how to keep my marriage rewarding for both of us. Once again I can assure him I AM his "wife for life".



ASWife
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13 Jun 2009, 12:41 pm

relieved wrote:
I haven't seen much material posted about sexual issues, but that's been a big one for us; to me he seems to relate to me sexually as though he were 12 years old -- I don't feel like there is an adult, a full-blooded man to respond to, and that is a tough one.


Boy! Do I ever hear you on this one!! I've always had a struggle with my Aspie's approach to sex! He goes at everything like he's killin' snakes, and the bedroom is no exception :( I have tried to explain things to him, but unless I want to explain every single time, it's no use! He simply doesn't get it. I miss tenderness and passion. I didn't like the way teenage boys approached me before, and I certainly don't appreciate the behavior now. I have lost a part of myself in this relationship and fear that I will never experience "normal adult sex" again. I try not to think about it and have pretty much accepted that this is my lot in life...


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Zola
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13 Jun 2009, 1:22 pm

As an Aspie woman, one of the things that really poisoned my relationships was that I was "expected" to "know" what was wrong.

I stopped taking "hints" at about age 15 because it was too much of a hassle and I'd usually guess wrong about what the hint meant anyway.

When I look at the good relationships in my life, what I see is people who will speak up in clear, simple terms about what they need. They assume that I have good will towards them and that I want them to be happy, and if something has happened to the contrary, they assume it's just a misunderstanding rather than my being "selfish" and "lacking empathy". They address the behavior, not my worth as a person.

I was fortunate enough to have a friend who is one of those "emotional geniuses", you know, the type that always knows the right thing to say or do? I know I had a lot of rough edges when we first met, but knowing him helped me to grow SO much, and it was painless because it was born from love and wanting to be better so I was the woman my friend saw--the best woman I could be.

But the reason he's an emotional genius becomes clear when we were chatting about the very subject some decades later. He said "you have *never* disappointed me".

In a sudden burst of insight, I realized that while it wasn't literally true, his willingness to see me as a person of good will and his firm knowledge that I did indeed care about him was enough to let us work out any problems that may have arisen. In my failed relationships, that was lacking--what I got was labels.

It might be something to think about.



ASWife
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13 Jun 2009, 3:56 pm

...but I think it might be easier for a female Aspie than a male in relationships because it seems that men would appreciate a less emotional female. Am I wrong??


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13 Jun 2009, 6:26 pm

ASWife wrote:
...but I think it might be easier for a female Aspie than a male in relationships because it seems that men would appreciate a less emotional female. Am I wrong??


I have had three marriages and many long term relationships. The marriages were pretty good but my first husband died in Vietnam in 1970, my second in the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989 and my third because my husband decided he needed to see other men.

I am an Aspie, full blown, but no one has ever accused me of being non-emotional. If anything, my emotions are on my sleeve and they all have a hair trigger. I can't recommend myself for marriage, not unless the guy was really social and had a life outside the home that satisfied his need for that sort of intimacy without violating the fluid bonding between the marriage partners.

so, no, being Aspie doesn't mean there are no emotions. It is more like each emotion is like a lake or pond with a different depth in different places. Some emotions are broadly shallow and then whoops you can step into a hole and be over your head with reactions before you know what happened. We even surprise ourselves.

Merle


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13 Jun 2009, 10:59 pm

I'm newly diagnosed with AS and my husband has so many symptoms that we're sure he has it to (now the household joke is that he's more "high functioning" than I am because he can stay on track better than I) and we've had to learn so many things about communication and feelings in order to make it work. one of our key alerts is the statement "too much input" and it's worked out really well, even my ADHD kid understands that mommy is close to a melt-down if I say that and she quiets down, leaves the room, or lets me leave the room.

we had a big discussion today about the proper ways to communicate that we're staying out and don't plan to come home at a specific time, because he hates it if I say I'll be home "in a bit" and then show up an hour later, because passing time doesn't seem to impact me. now I get to say "I'm staying out and I don't know when I'll be back, don't wait up". he's also learned to tell me he's going to go isolate himself for a while instead of just walking out without an explanation.

I know life with people like us is hard, but my brother (also AS) pointed out that although we have a hard time with empathy, we're very compassionate toward those we care about if we can be made to understand how you feel. figuring out how to understand each other seems to be a major thing sometimes, a lot of work, often involving tears, but I've found it to be worth it.



Zola
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15 Jun 2009, 1:04 am

ASWife wrote:
...but I think it might be easier for a female Aspie than a male in relationships because it seems that men would appreciate a less emotional female. Am I wrong??


I haven't found it to be so. In my experience, they would *say* they liked it but get mad because I wasn't warm and nurturing enough... ;)