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Note: This blog post is very old!  I've just posted a new blog, however, which invites readers to discuss the same topic.  Please join the conversation at "Married: With Autism!  Is Your Spouse Autistic?"

What's it like to live with a spouse on the autism spectrum? If nothing else, it's complex! One reader asks for advice on how to manage her husband's new diagnosis -- and how to cope with the reality that autism, with all its challenges, will not go away. Drs. Bob Naseef and Cindy Ariel, family psychologists and editors of "Voices From the Spectrum," offer advice and insights.

Are you married to someone on the autism spectrum? Or are you an adult with autism who is working to make a marriage successful? What are your challenges, rewards, and best advice? Comment here!

Comments
May 30, 2006 at 10:29 pm
(1) J Wright says:

I am 53, my autistic ‘friend’ is 28…I adore him beyond words. We have had a ‘relationship’ as of Oct., 2 yrs. I live in a small town and a few “friends” have remarked our relationship is not “normal”.
It has nothing to do with our ages, but a few think because I love a person with a brain disorder I am ignorant, and my love is a pervert. My man is the most wonderful being I have met on God’s green earth. He is a high-functioning autistic man. He isn’t always verbal, but is always a kind loving person. What do they know, anyway?…Jules

May 31, 2006 at 7:49 pm
(2) misty says:

I think you should date and marry someone of your same mental capacity. I have a daughter that has high functioning autism and that is what I would want for her – other wise you will be thinking for that person all the time. Stay with someone you are intellectually compatible with.

April 3, 2011 at 4:58 am
(3) john says:

autism does not diminish your mental capacity. Plenty of autistic people are much more intelligent than non-autistic people

April 19, 2011 at 11:44 am
(4) esther says:

john i very much agree with you , my husband of 16yrs has ASD, and he is a very succesful businessman, that solely fend for a family of 6, i dont work because my youngest son age 3, has got ASD aswel!

June 2, 2006 at 10:44 am
(5) MD says:

What if you suspect your husband has autism, but both him and his family choose to deny it??? Our first son,by the way, is autistic. How do you deal with this situation??

June 2, 2006 at 10:51 am
(6) K says:

My oldest son is 15 and is high-functioning autistic. His doctor thinks that my husband also is autistic. My son behaves better and has more sense than his dad does.

June 2, 2006 at 11:00 am
(7) KE says:

My oldest son is 15 and has high-functioning autism. His doctor thinks that my husband also is autistic. My son behaves better and has more sense than his dad does.I am about to give up on my marriage.

June 2, 2006 at 11:12 am
(8) NH says:

KE: My youngest son, age nine is high functioning with autisim. I believe his father is either an ADD adult or has Asperger Syndrome. My husband’s life is chaotic to say the least.
My autistic child, on the other hand, usually behaves better and has more sense than his father. I beleive the difference is that my child has and is receiving help (early intervention) with his issues and his father has not. Therefore, the difference in actions/reactions.

June 2, 2006 at 11:21 am
(9) B says:

People who are autistic can be successfully married. It takes an
agreement between spouses to always ask for what you need. Autistic people won’t see what the other spouse needs, but they aren’t mean people, so if you have clear expectations, they are often happy to meet the Non-autistic spouses requests.

Example, I need you to help with household chores, specify which ones and with what frequency.
If you want more displays of affection, tell him it makes me happy with our relationship when you give me compliments, about how I look, or keep house, what ever you want a compliment about.

They will not guess what you need.

The routine once practiced is what they will offer.

Autistic spouses do need down time, privacy… Build it into your routines!!!

They tend to be very monogamous and hard working, there are many more difficult types of spouses.

April 25, 2011 at 9:57 am
(10) Ann says:

Autistic people need to look for someone with low self-esteem who is willing to receive nothing in return. But then, my autistic husband had that figured out pretty early on. One thing is for sure that was said on this thread: Autistic people can be VERY intelligent.

June 4, 2011 at 9:27 pm
(11) MCL says:

Thank you so much for your comment. It is very helpful!

July 24, 2011 at 12:42 pm
(12) Lost says:

I agree with both sides of this issue.

I am married to an autistic person, who seems to always have negative thoughts. He seems incapable of positive thinking. He is quick to critisize and very judgemental. To me, this is mean and hateful. he looks for and expects the negative from every situation and person. This makes it hard to bond with him. Before we were married, he was open to conversation and interaction, receptive to change and improvement, social and loving, full of kind words, deeds and thoughts and very tentative. After we said, ‘I DO’, everything changed. He became a stranger. No interaction or conversations, unwilling to seek help to improve our situation, doesnt spend any time with me in any form, no signs or words of love/ need/ nurturing/care /value towards me, constant criticism and mean words towards me and stopped showing signs of being a gentleman (opening car door, helping to carry groceries, saying thank you, etc). He completely shut me out and shut down. It’s as if I am married to his TRUE self.

In his mind, because he pays the household bills, he provides me a ‘comfortable life’. My life is very UNcomfortable. I do not have the sense of security nor safety, which marriage should provide. I am scared to NEED him or need anything from him. I do not feel safe he will want to be married to me tomorrow. I dont have the luxury of dreamming of a future with him. Where is this ‘comfortable life’ he thinks he is providing? No one should live in a daily state of fear and anxiety.

An autistic person can have a successful marriage with a non-autistic person ONLY when they are willing to put in effort. One person trying to make/hold a marriage causes excessive emotional, mental and physical pain/stress. If he were married to another person with autism, it might be better for both of them. They could be content/comfortable with being alone yet married.

July 24, 2011 at 1:07 pm
(13) Claudia says:

I am so sorry for all that you are going through. Yes, I agree completely. Your husband’s behavior from before you were married indicates that he CAN be a loving and nurturing husband. The situation is that he chooses not to be. That has nothing to do with autism, but with choices. My husband is also on the spectrum, but he is kind and attentive and nurturing. I want all the people on this thread to know that autism does not render you incapable of choosing to show kindness and love.

September 17, 2011 at 11:32 pm
(14) brian says:

I am a high functional autistic and I find it hard to talk to girls. I also struggle with negative thoughts and I hope to change too. My interests tend to be narrow but deep which makes it hard to learn other things which seems uninteresting. I learn things by rote including social skills.

Personally, I feel offended when my parents try correcting my speech but I must improve anyways or it’s difficult to get a job or friends. I’ve never been hired through a “successful” interview before.

I used to always feel resentful when people cannot hear what I say, or when I cannot hear what people say etc. It was difficult to let go of those feelings. I also hated accepting that I was wrong and I even justified my mistakes.

I believe that Jesus changed me few months ago after accepting him. Now it’s easier to let go of those feelings. A person can sin without actions too. I wished I made this decision earlier in life. We must not put off with that decision.

Marital problems are common regardless whether the party is NT or have ASD. Just look at the divorce rates.

June 2, 2006 at 12:47 pm
(15) Quinton says:

Wow, be careful with the arguement that individuals disgnosed with autism should date others diagnosed with autism…should people with bipolar only date other bipolar individuals? That is a slippery slope that leads to isolation, segregation, and exclusion. Many people who are autistic have fewer challenges than some of us “normal” people do, they have merely been labeled. Should someone who graduated college refuse to date someone who has only a high school degree because they are at different “intellectual levels”? As long as there is no incapacity to make rational judgement, no one should be able to tell someone whom they can and cannot have a relationship with. And as far as “thinking for someone”, they may bring an entirely different way of looking at the world and provide some perspective that was not previously thought of. You are selling your daughter very, very short. I am very alarmed at this line of thinking, hopefully the thought was just taken out of context or not thought out entirely. We need to support inclusion in people’s lives, not exclusion and segregation! CHOICE!!!

June 2, 2006 at 12:52 pm
(16) J says:

B those tips are very helpful. The more I read about autism and esp. Asperger’s the more convinced I am that both my husband and I are on the spectrum, as is our 3yo son. B’s tips are right on and speak to exactly the troubles that tend to arise in our relationships.

June 2, 2006 at 2:24 pm
(17) k8 says:

i have one 8 y.o. son w/aspergers and a 5y.o.son w/autism and a husband that toatlly denies any issues and will not seek a dx or professional opinion. i think he has aspergers (at least) possibly bipolar comorbid. I think i am going to have to take the kids, + the other 3 nt kids and leave…
having a spouse on the spectrum is beyond tolerance sometimes. i feel like the nurse, in one flew over the cucoos nest.

June 2, 2006 at 2:53 pm
(18) Cynthia Whitfield says:

I understand both positions when it comes to having relationships. I have a friend who married a man with high-functioning autism and in spite of a lot of work, he just could not meet her needs for intimacy and communication. It wasn’t that she was being intolerant, and he wasn’t being mean, but they were truly a mismatch. She couldn’t go on not feeling enough connection, feeling that he couldn’t relate to her spouse.

On the other hand, I know a young woman who is so far doing very well dating a man with high-functioning autism. It could be that she has fewer needs for conversing and emphasizing, or he is more able to communicate in a neurotypical fashion — I don’t know. But I know that it doesn’t always work, and we have to acknowledge it.

And for the record, with neurotypicals, some differences don’t always work out either. Sometimes it doesn’t work for someone very intellectual to marry someone who isn’t — but sometimes it does.

July 24, 2011 at 12:43 pm
(19) lost says:

thank you for this.. it is RIGHT on the money.

September 19, 2011 at 1:33 pm
(20) Becky Thomas says:

I’ve been married for 3 years to a man whom I believe has high functioning asperger’s. He also suspects that, although denial isn’t just a river in Egypt. I can tell you what has worked for us thus far.

1. Tell him how you feel. I have to tell him if I’m angry. Otherwise, he’s clueless. Especially since my favorite thing is the silent treatment. Then he’s REALLY clueless. He respects and loves me, so he listens. The other night he had his computer at the dinner table. I said, “That bothers me.” So he shut it.

2. Give him plenty of space. My hubby needs plenty of alone time. It’s vital for him to recharge. I take the kids somewhere for several hours once or twice a week. Sometimes he goes to the office on weekends. Whatever works.

3. Don’t expect too much. I’m a touchy feely person and my spouse is not. I used to rail and rail against this. I didn’t think I could make this marriage work. But I can! I hug and love on my kids. And on the rare occasions that he loves on me, I imprint those on my memory. I pull that memory out from time to time. When I need to. I have to make that last awhile.

4. Look for other evidence. I know he loves me. I know this by the things he does. Like the way he cleans house when he’s home alone. Or does the laundry for me. Or cleans my car. Or when he offers to do things he doesn’t like to do.

Marriage with someone on the spectrum can work. In the my case, I give in more than he does. I bend. Because I can and he can’t. And that’s okay. A true, lasting relationship is rarely 50/50. And you know what? It doesn’t have to be. As long as both are in agreement. And since we have kids, it’s not about me anymore anyway.

September 26, 2011 at 11:50 pm
(21) Mandy says:

thank you so much, Becky. I am not sure that the gentleman I am dating in on the spectrum, but I, as well as he has considered the possibility. I am familiar with this, as I have a nine year old son that is PDD. I cry many nights that I am afraid my son will not experience all the fun that NT’s do… and just when I thought one was enough, I find a wonderful, absolutely beautiful inside and out man, that displays some of the symptoms… I was beginning to feel like if I just went away, he wouldn’t notice, so why not just throw in the towel. THEN I saw the part of your post where it states you give more than 50/50 because you can, and he can not. THAT STATEMENT is what got me, and has made me say, hang in there.. because overall I have an amazing man that I do believe loves me, just may not be able to show it all the time.. like a girl does, lol

June 2, 2006 at 9:33 pm
(22) Angie says:

I just wanted to agree with everything that Quentin said. I am the mother of a 3 year old daughter with high functioning autism. It is my goal to help her become the person she is meant to be, and give her all the help she needs in the roadblocks that life may offer her. To say she should only date someone who is exactly the same as her? That is a slippery slope, where do you draw the line?

June 3, 2006 at 1:46 am
(23) Mary Rose says:

I know plenty of “neuro-typicals” seemingly matched with thieir neuro-typical other half. They struggle equally and undenyingbly with that other partner too.

Marry who you love and who loves you. See a therapist when you reach the point of “…I think its over”. And, not blame intellect or autism for the truth of where we are.

You got this far in the relationship. Apparently, there was something that brought you this far. If it was a mistake, take ownership and movce on.

July 24, 2011 at 12:51 pm
(24) lost says:

I agree with your statement to see a therapist or marriage/relationship counsellor.. however, some autistic people refuse to seek help. They dont think in terms of WE or US.. when suggesting a therapist, the reaction is ‘you trying to say something is wrong with me’.. marriage is not ‘me or I’, it should be ‘us and we’.

I married who I love, but no one told me he was autistic before I married him.

June 3, 2006 at 1:55 am
(25) Laura says:

I’ve really enjoyed reading the comments. We have a 4 year old who was diagnosed a few months ago with ASD (Aspbergers). We are now having our 10 year old who also had several developmental delays and is two grade levels behind and is extremly withdrawn, immature for his age and has frequent emotional meltdowns. I suspect also that my husband is on the spectrum, but he thinks I’m nuts. I also, have a hard time connecting to him emotionally. I always thought it was because he was an only child. But he is very much a loner, has selfesteem issue, doesn’t do the hygiene thing unless I say something. He doesn’t like to socialize and totally doesn’t get the whole social misses social thing. I wonder if he should be checked, but wonder what would be the benefit of knowing? Would it change things? Any one out there diagnosed late in life and can share how it has impacted them. My husband is 45 and very high functioning, he extremly brillant with his hands and can fix anything.

Laura

May 11, 2011 at 5:17 pm
(26) ss says:

Autism is genetic. It is a trait usually inherited from the male gene. The chances are your husband is but not much can change now. He is still the man u married and all the strategies people use are all developed by middle age adulthood. Knowing may not help anything and may have a knock on effect on his confidence.

June 3, 2006 at 10:29 am
(27) Rick says:

My wife FINALLY got through to me last night. I’m 52 and I believe I have AS(and ADD). Our 8 year old son was diagnosed at age 3 with AS. My neglect, detachment and unconsciousness has reaped an enormous toll on my family especially my wife of 25 years. I don’t know if it’s all too late but at least I’m on the track now seeking support on the web and through professionals specifically for AS.

September 28, 2011 at 10:17 am
(28) Emily Zacharias says:

Rick,

I have struggled with my husband’s very limited emotional spectrum for much of our 29-year marriage. He is nearing 60, and I am wondering- do you think there is a point in asking him to get tested? He is a general practitioner of medicine. Our 2 sons are blessed with a full emotional imagination.

Thank you for listening.

June 3, 2006 at 12:04 pm
(29) carol says:

Thank you to those who understand that marrying someone you love is what matters. My husband of six years has high functionong autism. He is sweet, kind and intelligent. Do we have problems? Yes we have problems but I want to know what marriage
is perfect. The great things about my husband is that he has taught me so much. He shares things like his love for geography. Also he is creative and funny. He may not be able to do the small talk thing like others but I know my husband loves me and and is dedicated to our life together. I only wish people were not so judgemental on things they don’t understand.
I wish there were people out that we could get suppport from instead of comments like “autistic should marry thier own kind.” I am a person and so is my husband and our love for each other can match up against anyone anytime.

January 14, 2011 at 1:02 am
(30) Andrea says:

What u said was very encouraging carol! I’m dating a guy who has high functioning autism. He is very intelligent and creative. I’ve learned a lot from him! The issue I’m facing right now is that my parents don’t think he’s the right guy for me. they don’t think I should ever have kids with him because they will turn out artistic. they also don’t think he will be a good father because of his autism. Of course it won’t be easy but he talks wanting to have kids and what their names will be, with me all the time! I haven’t talked to his pare
nts about this yet, but we are serious about getting married, so i hope they can give me the great advice I am looking for! *andrea*

July 24, 2011 at 1:00 pm
(31) lost says:

read all the books you can find on autism adults, married to someone with autism, giving birth and raising autistic children .. talk to everyone who is married to someone with autism… talk to a therapist …. listen to your parents…. this is your life you are speaking of..

April 25, 2011 at 10:18 am
(32) Ann says:

All the luck to you. It only gets harder. @ 19 years, I’m just barely hanging on. It’s a very lonely life being married to an autistic person.

June 4, 2006 at 1:20 am
(33) Felicia says:

I tend to believe that if an AS person marries a non AS individual, it needs to be a caretaker type relationship and/or a neurotypical with a huge background in ASD who knows exactly what he/she is getting into.
It seems right to say marry who you love. But, some things take a long time to sink in. After fifteen years of struggling through what seemed like difficult but typical marital issues, my sons were diagnosed and I re-examined my marriage to their obviously AS father. As I look back I see our experiences were not truly shared – we were both there, but our perception was so radically different they weren’t actually shared. It’s looking back and seeing you were alone all along, and, the real kicker, it isn’t going to change. I appreciated also the comment you will have to do their thinking for them. God, that gets old. Like all humans, things we can “live with” at the beginning turn into oh my God what was I thinking after about ten or so years. In that respect, marrying someone you are “in love with” is only realistic if you have a lot a lot a LOT of information going in. Things are not what they seem, and fifteen years and two high maintenance kids into it, there’s no good answer.

June 4, 2006 at 10:01 am
(34) KJ says:

Possible ASP husband. Can there be sexual abuse of children by someone with ASP?

Needing answers…

July 24, 2011 at 1:10 pm
(35) lost says:

YES YES YES

June 5, 2006 at 9:04 pm
(36) Janice says:

I completely agree with Felicia. Love means a lot when you get married, but it’s not enough. I also have a son with AS + ADHD and have realized that his father is classic AS. I have always been the “supervisor” for all of us and now I’m being told that I’m neglecting my “gifted” daughter. I tried as long as I could, but for me, it was just too much. My full-time job in the software idustry is a piece of cake compared to my family life! I do, however, agree with all the suggestions listed here – if you can manage to get the other person to cooperate.

June 6, 2006 at 2:14 am
(37) Bettina chale-matsau says:

It was great to read about being married to an autistic person. my son has been recently diagnosed, high functioning. After reading about other people’s experiences with regard to their spouses, I am now even more convinced that my husband is autistic. He is a great guy. Loves his kids a lot, but extremely antisocial. He has no friends. His time is pent at the office and at home. we go out a lot as a family, but is not in favour of having other people arround him. he discouraged me from my friends, now I hardly ever spend time with friends. It can be frustrating but you kind of get used to it.

If anyone married to an autistic would like to communicate I am very much willing.

Regards,
Bettina

July 24, 2011 at 1:03 pm
(38) lost says:

send contact info..

June 6, 2006 at 6:25 pm
(39) carol says:

Thanks Bettina. Like I already posted I am okay with my husband having high functioning autism. I think it is what you are looking for in a relationship. I know and hear about plenty of so called “normal” people who have some major maritial problems. My point is, it is not always just about the disorder but about other issues as well. And I am sorry for those whose relationships are not happy right now. There are some of us who are very happy.

June 30, 2006 at 11:26 am
(40) KE says:

I wrote the comments on lines 4 & 5. My husband has told me he hates people, has no use for them, and doesn’t want to be around them. I am completely the opposite. I feel isolated from the world.

July 24, 2011 at 1:09 pm
(41) lost says:

my husband said the same words ‘he hates people and wish they all would just die’. this scared the living (bleep) out of me because I am a grandmother of two wonderful babies (age 4 and 2). I became afraid of having them come to our home to visit. I love people. I think people are great. everyone has a story to tell and provide something new to my life. hating people is like hating yourself. The word ‘hate’ hurts the person who says and the person hearing it.

July 5, 2006 at 2:34 pm
(42) conger says:

this is mind-blowing. cassville.amissouri.com

July 10, 2006 at 10:14 pm
(43) lp says:

Hmmm…..how do they differentiate between a border line personality disorder & autism or aspergers?

August 13, 2006 at 1:26 pm
(44) Tan says:

After 18 yrs of marriage and now having 2 children diagnosed with HFA,I now know why I have been so lonely in our marriage.It truly is a caretaker’s position and although he is helpful around the house,I still guide him thru life,I am a glorified babysitter.He is a terrific man, but you can only give for so long.He works for us fulltime but has no knowledge of what is involved with raising and teaching our kids on a daily basis,he cannot even remember the doctor’s names or the teacher’s and aide?I feel shorthanded.Getting very tired.

April 9, 2007 at 11:13 pm
(45) Judy says:

My marriage broke up some time ago. I have just been reading about AS. No one told me. Here were my feelings:
Is there nothing he likes about me? He never says.
Why is he mentally removing himself from this relationship for hours/days?
What does it mean when he communicates that he loves me and wishes I would go away? How can I work with that?
In twenty years, he complimented me twice. Was there nothing nice about me?

Now I am just wondering if he had AS.He needed routine, hated change, would leave visitors to go prune the apple tree. He told me shortly after we bought our first home that we could never have more than one visitor at a time.
It is important for me to know, even now, because I could stop feeling like a failure, stop being angry if it is true.

July 24, 2011 at 1:17 pm
(46) LOST says:

he had Aspergers! you are not a failure.. A failure is someone who doesn’t try. You tried but you were not informed.
i cried as i read your message. Felt as if you were writing about me. I am still married and trying to hang on, but …… No one told me, i was not informed. I had to seek a psychiatrist, who tipped me to what my husband’s situation. Not one of his family members told me anything. Either they didnt know, didnt want me to know, is trying to protect him or his feelings or just dont give a darn if we remain married or get divorced.

April 11, 2007 at 12:54 am
(47) kah says:

My boyfriend is 20 years old and he has just been told that he has AS. This is a huge break through considering he went through his entire life not knowing why he was so different. He is an incredible person, extremely intelligent and caring. Sure he says things sometimes that are awkward and he has a terrible temper but i feel as though knowing he has aspberger’s has brought a new life where he considered ending his own. I think people with asperger’s (along with autism) are some of the most beautiful people in the world. My boyfriend claims he can’t read facial expressions but i’ve noticed lately that he will ask me whats wrong if i am upset and trying to hide my emotions…it is very surprising. I feel as though he can learn so much and just hope he never gives up as he was close to doing before he found out he has aspberger’s.

curious to know what kind of obesessions your aspies are interested in?!?
stay strong

July 24, 2011 at 1:22 pm
(48) lost says:

your majic word is ‘boyfriend’… my boyfriend was everything I imagined a man should be and do until he became my husband..

April 11, 2007 at 11:15 pm
(49) Jen says:

I have a child with Autism and I suspect my spouse is on the spectrum. He can talk for hours about computers or the solar system but can’t stay on topic when others are speaking. He tunes out and acts disinterested when the conversation goes outside his “interest” comfort zone. Friends will come over and I can’t get him to look up from his computer to acknowledge them. I am very outgoing, and his chilly response to our famiy and friends really bothers me. I would agree that it is so difficult for an emotionally driven person to be married to someone who is so detached. However, I believe there is someone out there for everyone. My spouse is a good person, very smart, talented and a great parent. In all truth, just not right for me. My advice, really get to know a person before marrying them. It your life, but they deserve to be happy too.

July 24, 2011 at 1:26 pm
(50) lost says:

did he act like this before you got married? my husband was totally opposite of when he is now. While chasing/dating me, he was outgoing, open, social, engaging, fun, warm, caring, loving, nuturing, and talked about anything and everything for hours and hours. After the ‘I DO’s', he went back to his true nature.

April 30, 2007 at 4:55 pm
(51) Belle says:

oh,how did this happen?!! I am one of those people just a hair short of being a know-it-all.It seemed I had the perfect spouse,a great listener, super-smart (he couldtell me the names of the constellations,mounain ranges,the habits of skinks and skunks and all manner of biodiverse trivia. It was so fun,simulating! And he never seemed to get mad at me or be possessive or insist on doing things his way. In fact,he didn’t have many opinions at all. I feellike a fool because he must have been suffering—wasn’t he? Trying to keep up with me and my quick witted family and friends. He hid it well. We thought he was quirky, a bit of a loner but brilliant. He made good money too. When he did comment it was so offbeat it was uproarious! Only now do I venture to see that he didn’t mean it that way…I jut did not want to see it. Our kids are fine,they have oddities for sure but I think I willed a couple of them out of it. They are accomplished young adults, like their dad once was. their cousins were not as lucky with autism ,aspergers and the like. Now that I admit it, that my husband is likely asd, will it be worse–will he stop trying to keep up?

May 16, 2007 at 10:17 pm
(52) Roel says:

I have a son who is diagnosed with HFA and I believe I also have HFA. I’m getting diagnosed shortly. Being married to an NT is very difficult. We have many hiccups in our relationship because I see things very differently. Dealing with our son is easy because we as parents want the best for him, but dealing with a spouse after only recently finding out about the diagnosis can be very hard. There are so many things that we do differently and see differently. Specifically when it comes to the ability to express ourselves emotionally. This poses a huge problem for my wife. I love her deeply and wish i had the capacity to show it so much more.

I’ll be a little more blunt then most people here about the comment of dating someone of your own mental capacity. Firstly, it has nothing to do with mental capacity! A lot of us have a much higher mental capacity then a lot of NTs.
Do we have difficulties with certain things? Sure! But that doesn’t give anyone the right to tell us who we can and can not love. There are many successful relationship with people who are Autistic and don’t even know it. So careful how you treat us and careful not to put us in a labeled box. You’ll find a lot of us will retaliate and rebel against that.

http://isnt.autistics.org/dsn.html

Just for some perspective on how we see the NTs.

June 16, 2007 at 11:15 am
(53) Mac says:

I think my husband (33) of four years has autism. He became quite depressed last year and began couseling. And the doctor thinks he might have mild autism becuase he can’t identify emotion or choose the correct faces for the correct emotion on a worksheet. I (27) have thought this about him for some time too and last night I finally said something about it and he told me what the Dr. said. My family have commented on the fact that he constantly asks me if I’m okay and I always think ‘Why is he asking me if I’m okay? Can’t he tell if I’m happy, sad etc.’ But he can’t.
So what do I do now? I feel really sad. I am worried about having children with him (we have no kids now). Our marriage has been such hard work to this point but I am in love with him. I just feel alone as I echo many on this forum’s points about lack of friends. I am also emotionally exhausted. Any comforting or constructive advice would be most useful.

June 21, 2007 at 9:07 pm
(54) Daniela says:

I am nowing leaving with my boyfriend who has mild ASD. He is very smart and sweet in his own way. He does not talk much and can at times be emotionly detached. He has not said I love you once. He does not see a need for the pharse. Is that typely. He does not even like to say good nite.
At the same time he can read me like a book and is very caring but in very logicly way.

July 8, 2007 at 3:35 am
(55) AME says:

Love means accepting people for who they are, whether it be nurotypical(NT) or on the autistic spectrum. I have spent alot of time with people from all mental perspectives and I have learned just as much if not more from the autistic people in my life as I have from the NT.
Yes it is important to make sure your needs are met as well as your partners, but you shouldn’t take autistic people’s or anyone’s behavior as a personal attack. When conflict arises stop and ask yourself what is really at the root of the problem and how can it be sovled. I know this is easier said than done, but I can’t tell you how many times my issues with my spouse could have been more effectively managed had I stopped and took a breath and relooked over the situation.
We are all pieces of God’s perfect design and we must remember no one’s thought processes are superior to anyone elses. It takes all types of people to make this world work and we should embrace them all. My heart goes out to all those struggling in thier releshonships with thier spouses. I encourage to become as educated as you can about autism and encourage your partner to do the same about you. We all have to embrace and care for each other.

May 11, 2011 at 3:43 pm
(56) Melody Musette says:

The word “relationships” is not spelled the way you spelled it. If you want to talk about being educated, use your spellcheck. This is not meant to be sarcastic. Its good that you have a positive attitude toward being connected to a person who is autistic.

Many of us can use all the help we can get.

Melody

August 14, 2007 at 12:19 am
(57) mary says:

I just discovered that my husband and 2 sons (2.5 yrs and 4.5 yrs) are all autistic after speaking to a psychologist. The suffering I have gone thru for the past 9.5 yrs is like a nightmare. I am horribly lonely. I am also verbally abused by his parents (while he just stand and watch and tell lie and doing nothing) until they finally disown me. He demands for my money and that I cannot stop work even when I hurt my back and wrist after childbirth. He is completely heartless and ruthless. I am living in hell…

July 24, 2011 at 1:33 pm
(58) lost says:

what are your options? then decide for yourself…. God made more than 1 man….

August 28, 2007 at 10:36 am
(59) Meadowmist says:

Somebody help me…….I’m online dating this wonderful AS man for the past six months. He’s the sweetest & most delightful man I’ve ever met…..but his inaccessibility and lack of awareness of what time it even is….is driving me a little nuts.

I’ve had some success just bluntly & honestly asking for what I want….about 50 percent of the time. But the other 50 percent, he just totally forgets even if he said yes.

The other day, I asked if we could meet online a little earlier in the evening, we’ve been doing it at a time convenient to him for months & I have my busy life too…….and he said, “I don’t want to waste the best hours of the evening socializing.” “Waste”? :-( Gee, thanks :-(

But then he turns around and says the most dazzlingly loving things.

July 24, 2011 at 1:39 pm
(60) lost says:

dont fool yourself …. he didnt SAY anything.. he typed it. you HEARD no voice and no words. you are allowing yourself to dream and fantacize .. when in reality both of you are using a medium intended to give a false sense of socializing but promotes non-social behavior. if he makes you a little nuts now ……….?

August 2, 2011 at 10:57 pm
(61) Mj says:

Lost, just wondering if you realize that all your comments are in response to posts that are 4 years old ?!?

September 1, 2007 at 12:22 pm
(62) jane says:

soooo sad. and lonely. been dating him long distance for almost a year. spent the summer at his place…the loneliest time of my life. now i understand. i’m not sure what to do. it all makes sense now. he is moving here…i need answers…i need to talk to him. he only suspects he has some degree of autism – he is a special ed teacher. this is tough. the only time i’ve seen him has emotion is over his son. is this normal? more emotion to one’s child even if displaying none for any one else?

October 29, 2007 at 7:48 pm
(63) Marianne says:

#26 and others-

I too suspect my spouse has a high functioning A.S. disorder. He is very intelligent and seems nothing but normal to anyone else.
I have struggled with the lack of affection, lack of insight into my feelings, need for routine, need for down time without me, need for routine in his job… Etc…
I noticed when we were dating that he did not “infer” my needs from the situation.
I love him more than life itself. He is my everything.
But, as another said you cannot assume they will just get the clue about what you need. No clues here. But, He is kind and recognizes his weaknesses. Can he fix them? No.
Will I mention I suspect this? No. What would be the point? We have a high functioing Asperger’s child. He has not figured it out. It would only hurt his feelings.
He is my world. I will just work with him like I do my sweet teen aged child.
I choose to learn about it and look for support annonymously when I need it.
Marianne

November 19, 2007 at 4:41 pm
(64) NT Spouse says:

I am going into my second year of marriage to an aspie woman. She operates at a high level, but sometimes can suddenly become emotionally unavailable and uncommunicative for days. If often wonder “what’s wrong with me?, why am I so depressed? am I going crazy?” It is hard when you realize that she doesn’t understand how I feel, she never will understand it, and she doesn’t even understand why you would attempt it.

Unlike many aspies, she is great in social settings where she can make small talk. But I have never been able to have a satisfactory conversation about our relationship and how it makes me feel. My feelings are not logical to her, so she cannot see my point of view. When she is warm and inviting our marriage is great. When she withdraws it is the loneliest relationship I have ever had.

Sex is another problem. She doesn’t like it nearly as often as I do. She tries to go along, but sometimes she is so not in the mood that she grimmaces (which is difficult to my male ego).

I know she would never hurt me, but she does all the time. I try to develop thick skin, but if feels like it is getting thinner every day. I don’t know if we are going to make it. But I do know that I will never have the realionship I want with her. Most women would want a man who is open, communicative, engaging and willing to work on the relationship. With her those are all detriments. She often says “I with you were less interactive.” Makes me fell unworthy.

December 8, 2007 at 7:19 pm
(65) Life In Limbo says:

I have been reading this and want to scream. I am a social, fun loving professional woman with a daughter who has the same love of life. After my 3 year old son was diagnosed on the spectrum, I now have put together the anti-social, sensory issues and extreme disengagement in my husband and want to shutter! I am exhausted taking care of my extended family, my immediate family and my own business… I have nothing left and cannot take the verbal abuse and isolation any more. I want to take my kids and get my life back!

January 8, 2008 at 6:18 pm
(66) aspy spouse says:

# 39 If you just realized what is the cause of your frustration, take a break. Take a vacation, go to a spa, got to women’s gathering, go to the wine country. Do something just for yourself; give your self credit and time. Then see if you have the energy to approach the situation with more awareness. I did not know what was happening for many years. Knowing makes it easier because you can apply some tools, but it will always take patience and flexibility and the realization that you have exactions. Some you can get met some you wont. It wont be predictable but you will know what you’re dealing with and find will creative ways to get responses and will learn acceptance from when you don’t. Being honest seemed to be my best stress releief if at times I could only be so with my self. An Asperger’s person seems to a able to take honesty in spurts with time to rest, but things may need repitition , maybe for ever. Just knowing this can help you not feel reactive.

I know the exhaustion, and with child and husband it is almost unthinkable. You have find ways to rest your body and mind and don’t feel one once of guilt over it.

March 24, 2008 at 4:45 am
(67) Bitter says:

#38 – I feel your pain.
- Was she depressed before you met her “because she had been treated badly before” ?
- Did you think that if you treated her well, “she would be happy?”
- Did she accidently became pregnant?
- Does she blame you for things which you feel are unreasonable.
- Does she wail “I want a divorce” when she has her dark days?
- Does she fail to get dressed at weekends so you can never go out together until the afternoon (then its too late to do anything)?
- Does she obsess about things e.g. how the house can be improved?

After many years and 2 children (2nd autistic), I fell really unhappy.
At the time I thought I had to do the right thing and marry as “it could get better” but I was wrong. Boy what a mistake, I don’t love the woman, she doesn’t love me and the stress over the last 10 years has affected my health.
Unfortunately, my wife has terrible “control” issues. I can’t drive a car without her ordering what speed to go at and reminding ne about the dangers ahead. At times I feel like I’m losing my mind.
Why don’t I leave? The kids I guess. Why do I write this? Because if anyone is at the begining of a relationship (no kids) with a woman who fits the trends above, then be warned, it will never get better.

April 1, 2008 at 10:22 pm
(68) Helena says:

I’m sitting here crying my eyes out with such pain and RELIEF!!! So happy I found this board. He loves me. He can state it he just can’t show it. It doesn’t help that I am emotionally needy. He is brilliant, earns well and functions adequately in social situations. His family, my family and friends have always said that he is quirky, unique and awkwardly humorous. People see him for the genius that he is and he is really a wonderful person…except for his inability to emotionally connect, the hygiene issues and the aversion he has to openly getting professional help with dealing with his Autism. It feels so much better to have knowledge of his disorder than to think that I was getting worse. I suffer from depression and anxiety and as a result low self-esteem. I know the benefits of proper medical attention…I want this help for my husband as well. I’m a newlywed…I am so lonely…I love him so much…thank you for this board. I have been praying…hurting…searching.

April 15, 2008 at 1:37 am
(69) A.Singer says:

Wow…I am amazed to have found this page…but I am also concerned that my boyfriend, diagnosed with PDD years ago, isn’t really on the spectrum. He is extremely loving and doting towards me, and is always very careful to see that my emotional needs are met. I feel like I’m on a pedestal, and this is the first time in my life that my self-esteem is soaring. The only thing that makes me feeling lonely is my family’s disapproval of him as a mate for me. They liked my previous husband, who was a nearotypical who couldn’t communicate, made me feel worthless, and was very selfish and antisocial, and wouldn’t dare try to work on our relationship. My boyfriend is the most caring and sensitive person I have ever met in my life…and believe it or not, we were in love at first sight. There was something amazing between us. We have also had our share of problems over the last five years. Sometimes I have trouble following his patterns of speech, but am well able to decipher now. He speaks and thinks beautifully. He did ALOT of quirky things, and he won’t drive (???) I have three children, two of which are twins diagnosed with Autism, and he is WONDERFUL with them…better than anyone else has ever tried to be. He is emotionally available…sometimes to the point that I almost suffocate a little. He gets extremely goofy when he is excited, and we argue over stupid things because I don’t understand is meaning…and we end up going around in circles. Let’s not mention the crazy=attire. He is an athlete who hikes everywhere, and wears all sorts of gear…EVERYWHERE. He also is a healthnut who won’t put anything impure in his body. He has helped me to overcome a lot of health issues just by altering my diet. He is also my computer repair person and my personal administrator, and my masseur (beautiful massages on a regular basis), and he is very sexual, although we have chosen to wait until we are married. When we learned to flow with each other, things just slowly panned out. I think we are blessed to have such a deep and strong love. Because we know that we are soulmates, living without each other is not an option. We are literally unified. Though we have had major fights, the love we shared was so strong that our anger and frustration dissipates easily. God bless all of you, and thank you for sharing!!!

April 15, 2008 at 2:12 am
(70) A.Singer says:

Hello All…I did forget to mention a few thingsthat tend to really drive me nuts about my beuatiful soulmate. Sometimes, when I ask him a question, he pauses for a loooooooooooong time before answering. Sometimes I forget what we were discussing and I end up moving to a different topic. Other times, I can’t get a word in to save my life!! And the things he says are often so profound, yet other times he tells the silliest goofiest little jokes, and just talks about little “nothings” all day. I am an analyzer who talks for long periods of time, and then needs to be quiet for long periods of time…He does the same thing, so it works most of the time. ALSO~There was an incident in which he needed to urinate, but the downstairs potty had a little leak. Well, he couldn’t make it to the upstairs potty, so he peed in a cup. In his hurry to help out with getting the kids on the bus, he left the cup on the table next to a bottle of Motts Apple Juice. How crazy is that? I know you’re thinking, “That’s just one mistake,”…Well, he did it again, shortly after that. And this isn’t the only thing…I could keep going forever…but thise things don’t matter much to me. As time passes, these things become fewer, anyway, and the more I notice that I have totally failed to address my own very quirky behaviors and mistakes. One thing he doesn’t do anymore go nuts if I get upset. Actually I have learned to be “less” upset, too. He accepts his different way of thinking, but not as making him “less” than anyone else mentally. I think he is VERY in touch and enlightened. I do wish that he didn’t talk so close to peoples faces during conversations. I said, before that I thought that maybe he isn’t on the spectrum after all, but now that I have begun listing some characteristics, there’s no doubt about it. I think I may be also. I would be proud, if I were! A teacher I used to work with believes that EVERYONE is on the spectrum, ha ha! If it were discovered that that were the case, then we would have to develop a whole new gauge for assessing human behavior :-)

June 10, 2008 at 2:08 pm
(71) New Wife says:

HELP PLEASE!!! I have been married for 10 months and I suspect my husband has a high form of Autism. I didn’t realize it until approximately two months before the wedding. I am about to go nuts! I have guide our relationship and that’s not what I expected in marriage. It goes from pick up your clothes, honey help me clean up, honey can you fix the bed, honey can we do something together. He has no sense of my feelings or emotional state. I can put on a nice face, then when I blow up, he’s surprised, even if I have been saying how I feel all along. I mentioned the posibility of AS and he denies it. He said he thinks he possibly has Attention Deficit. Similar stories as others, I have to repeat myself all the time. When he is having a good day, where he is completely aware, he gets upset when I repeat myself but it’s possible I had not figured out yet, it was one of his good days. On other days, I can see in his eyes when he is emotionally disconnected from the world. I really need help, I think I can feel my blood flowing through my veins, my nervous system is shot. I am trying exercise to stay sane. PLEASE HELP!!!!

June 13, 2008 at 6:48 am
(72) Nicholas Bartell says:

I was born with full Autism and Dyslexia and managed to excell in Banking, I found out when my spouse had our 1st child, once i solved some physics i could put the subjects together and relate to people better but it is a work in progress I’m 32

July 17, 2008 at 11:39 pm
(73) Angel says:

What a relief! I am so happy to have found this board. My daughter and I have been struggling to understand her step-father, my husband, for the last 7 years. This sheds light on what I have been suspecting for a while now. I can probably have MUCH more patience with him, now that I know the background of his actions. I will have many questions, comments, and encouragements, whenever I can get on here…but for now i would like to know from any men out there on the spectrum…do you have issues with inititating sexual contact with the woman you love?
Thanks everyone!

Angel

September 28, 2008 at 7:33 pm
(74) stephanieT says:

im stephanie im 15 years old, my best friend for 2 years is now my boyfriend of 7 month, he is autistic and suffers from ADHD and Dislexia he can be hard to deal with, especially with us being so young. but i love him so much and i want to learn and grow so i can stay with him

so has anyone got any advice ?

December 3, 2008 at 4:35 am
(75) Mrs. P says:

Good evening…hasn’t anyone written here since September? Really? I’ve just read all the comments…so many folks asking for help…a visual comes to mind of spouses, tossing about in rough seas/darkness/raining … all calling out for help and there our spouses are-on the boat, inside with the heat on, headphones to their choice of listening material. They may wonder, after about 3 hours, just where are we anyway?!! But wouldn’t think of going outside, because they don’t want to because they don’t have any really strong reason to compel them to do so! Yes, they will be somewhat puzzled, months from now when a detective shows up and explained that our sorry bodies washed up on a beach miles and miles away—”Hmmm? What on earth made us want to go swimming anyway??!”

December 15, 2008 at 3:41 am
(76) Miss D says:

I am very much in love with my best friend, he has serious aspergers syndrome. We’ve tried to be romantically involved, but each time we try it never works. The problems associated stem from the fact that he is 19 and his parents are still very watchful and concerned for him. He says hes not good at realationships, and i think, when he realises hes in love he cant deal with everything involved, it overloads him and makes him sick. It really feels like prince charming was born with a horrible spell on him and by working at it, i can break the spell, but yea, theres definetly challenges in being with someone with an autistic disorder, and its painful.

January 20, 2009 at 7:25 pm
(77) Andrea Samsten says:

I am 20 years old, I am dating a guy who was diagnosed with aspergers syndrome when he was about 12 years old. He is unwilling to admit that he has aspergers and is very rigid in the way he does things. He has a very hard time communicating, is not very socially outgoing and has a difficult time discussing or sharing his feelings with the ones he cares about or even his friends. We are looking at marriage in about 3-4 years maximum and I am concerned about how his lack of communication, social skills, and withdrawl from his feelings are going to affect our long term relationship. He also tends to hide his frusterations when he is angry and it usually ends up exploding in my face about 1-2 days later. He is unwilling to seek any help from a counselor, pastor, or anyone that could be of benefit to him and his disorder. He is quite one sided on this subject and that usually means it goes in one ear and out the other if he doesn’t want to hear about something or talk about something. Do you have any suggestions that might better our situation? After I am done with college in about 4 years depending on how long it takes me to finish my major studies. We both see marriage as being an important thing to both of us and some day having a family of our own. Do you have any helpful suggestions to me that might be helpful for our relationship? If so thank you for your helpful advice.

March 9, 2009 at 11:21 am
(78) gina says:

i have a son that is high functioning. he is only 6, but i often wonder if he will ever be able to marry. i would feel really bad if he had a wife that felt as horrible as some of you. but i would like to think that he would do all he could to make things the best they could be. im glad im reading this now. i hope to teach him as he grows up how to be sesitive to how others feel.
to all of you who are not married yet, i feel that you should really look at the relationship like any other one: if the other person cares about your feelings and is willing to work on things, get help, put in effort than you have a shot. if not, than i would get out before you waste any more time or kids are involved. in a marriage, its all about attitude and finding a way for both people to be happy and feel good. if someone isn’t willing to do that before the marriage, they won’t be in a year or in 10 years. if you are already married, do what you can to work on it, but if its not going to work, move on before you are 10 years into it. life is too short to be unhappy.

July 10, 2009 at 11:48 am
(79) Mitzi says:

My husband is autistic, he and I think on the same level, I have never been to any doctors or been diagnosed with anything, but he and I are just alike and we are successfully married. We occasionally fight and go into our little rages but it’s all over in a few minutes and we are back to loving eachother more than ever. He is truly amazing, his family says no one has ever been able to understand him… but to me, he’s perfect !

July 10, 2009 at 4:33 pm
(80) Nora says:

hi all..
i really can’t beleive how everybody is commenting on this condition. I have been married for 7 months and known him for 2 years. Our relationship has beena struggle. I have felt alone and like a maid. Yesterday we have seen a counceler and she diagnosed him with high functioning Autisim, and Said that she advises men and women with this disorder never to get married :S. After he had left the room she looked at me with terrified eyes telling me repeatedli SAVE YOURSELF :(
I AM ONLY 22 and madly inlove. Dr has also said study’s has shown that women who are marrieed to men with HFA either commit suicide or end up in a mental hospital within 7 years of marriage.. Through out the marriage i used to tell my best friend i think i am going crazy and have had suicidel thoughts..
we have left it like that and said our godbye’s after counceling and are getting a devorce.
May God give us all patience and deeds for what we have suffered

July 29, 2009 at 8:42 am
(81) Anna says:

God help us indeed, Nora! And God help them too. I could have written your post, so similar my situation is, altough I am much older than you. I’ve been married for 4 years and I feel all the pain in the world when I think of my husband. He actually said, before we were married, that he thinks he has Asperger and I’ve never admitted it until tonight. I have tears behind my eyes and I’ll cry them out later, on the streets. I thought I am all alone in this, but now I know there so many like me. I’ve been thinking to a divorce for a long time, my heart is shrinking only when I think the word, and, unfortunatelly, it’s the only way to stay in this world.

August 5, 2009 at 6:10 pm
(82) Arthur says:

Hi everyone!
Everyone is different, can’t believe everything what doctors tell you, because one doctor has a different opinion than another doctor. People with autism should never get married? well, that depends on the opinions of doctors and parents. I have been told that there are various types of autism. Do anyone know the diffence between autism and mental retardation?

August 21, 2009 at 2:00 pm
(83) Dee says:

After our son was diagnosed I started wondering if my husband was autistic in some way. The sad part is after years of his insensitive callous behavior I no longer care about our marriage at all. I hope I can get help for my son so his wife does not hate him the way I do my husband.

August 28, 2009 at 3:17 am
(84) samantha says:

my step son has higher functioning autism. my husband is very hard to get on with and displays many of the traits emotionally. he also finds it hard to hold down a job, show emotion, cope with changes and hates stressful situations. he and i are almost on the rocks – we are getting a confirmed diasgnosis – i hope it may help for me to know that there is a reason for his terrible behaiviour. i do not want to break up with him but i feel very little for him currently. also my three step children were put into care as their biological mother could not cope. if i leave my husband they will go back to care – i cant do this to them, mainly because i love them but somehow my husband and i need to go forward and i dont know how.

September 3, 2009 at 3:19 pm
(85) Amy says:

I am married to a man that is high functioning autistic. We have been married for 19 years and have had 3 children together.
I am at a point that I just cannot take it anymore. I am lonely and miserable. My husband is a musical genius but locked up in his own little world. I dont even know the man.
I am so close to filing for divorce it is scary. I have stayed together with him all these years for our kids. Wish there easy answers.

October 5, 2009 at 10:16 pm
(86) jan says:

Everyone please check out the Delphi Forums! There are several forums dealing with Autism and Aspbergers. Several dedicated to AS Partners and even on dealing with AS Divorce. Highly informative!!!

December 22, 2009 at 10:54 pm
(87) Deb says:

All of the emotions expressed here are resonating inside me… How I found myself in a fantastic and crazy and outrageous and amazing 7 year romance with this man I will never understand… but he fascinates me and he is so loving and sweet and he is rock solid, he helps me be the best person I can be… even though I have to endure countless repetitions of phrases that drive me mad, his phrases make so much sense and yet are so profound and true… he can be so incredibly diplomatic with me and yet there are these awkward situations at dinners with people… times I’ve kicked him in the shins under table and he asks me in a loud voice “Is that you kicking me under the table?”… just a general lack of awareness in certain situations …. primarily when he is sensory overloaded – big public places, loud restaurants, large family gatherings, etc….
How he sometimes talks without taking a breath and provides endless details about everything including dates from years past, making me want to run away as fast as I can… and 20 minutes later we can have two sublime hours of silence lying on the dock looking up at a star filled sky with our heads snuggled together holding hands… how we wake up and find out we both had the same dream … what the heck is up with that?
I’ve been out with guys who are what is called here “NT” and don’t have a sliver of a heart compared with my man….. emotional expression and intimacy are beyond anything I’ve ever had in any relationship…
But I get very frustrated… and snappy sometimes… feeling my heart hardening, fear setting in… can I be with him forever?
Why me? I didn’t mean to sign up for the crazy ride I find myself on……. Is it because it’s the best thing for me?.. his “faults” do push me in places where I need to grow – being more responsible, practicing patience, acceptance, unconditional love, thinking from a unique vantage point and bringing more awareness to my silly habits too… I feel this is a spiritual partnership in many ways… but when the part of me that wants him to be “normal” kicks in, I forget how precious our relationship is…. that part of me is only there when I feel fear…
Whenever I feel angry with him for something I try to see where I might be doing that in my own life… and I ALWAYS seem to be able to find myself guilty of doing it in some way… freaky how that works!
We’ve been doing very gentle yoga moves at night for a few years, which really helps relax both of us, and especialy helps sleep, and we just started meditating together for 15 minutes every day…
Exercise feels so fantastic is so important for my mental and emotional stability and stamina… we take nutrition seriously too… he is celiac and we eat very simply and cleanly, and it’s great for me too, because I like to eat healthy food and I also like to cook.
I have to be with him because it’s best to let the heart have the final say on matters of the heart… the rest of my life will unfold around that decision… I believe that God / Goddess / Higher Power / Buddha / Allah / Creator is guiding us and helping me gain strength and wisdom through this … When it gets to be too much I just ask God to take the burden of my worries, and I trust that everything is fine… just trust that things are unfolding perfectly… and then I find that they do, even if it’s not unfolding the way I thought it would!
Love Rules! Unpredictably yes, but it rules…it’s where God is.
Thank you for letting me unload my thoughts here!

December 22, 2009 at 11:00 pm
(88) Deb says:
January 13, 2010 at 4:30 am
(89) amy penny says:

I will inform some of you on these comments posted. I am 26 years old and I am an aussie. Some of you are incorrect in your posts and I must say I believe I was almost insulted. We have been singled out though are whole lifes. I have an IQ of 165. I do admit I do not understand other people and how they feel so I ask them and I get yelled at for asking that alot because I do not know and I verify what is true and not true. I have been called uncaring and selfish. I do have feelings I just do not know how to express them very well and sometimes I cry and when I tell why Iam crying then non austim people think it is rediculous. I have been told my whole life to consider other people and I DO. I KNOW that it is difficult for normal people to understand but why is it I WE US are suppose to cater to everyone else when my whole life I have been made fun of for being different by NORMAL people. In posts I read some talk of how hard it is to be with someone with problems. To me I see it that even in adult hood this is still a form of picking on and being made fun of. I DONT WANT TO BE WHAT DOCTORS CALL NORMAL. Does normal mean bulling, complaining, divorcing, being a gossip queen, never having satisfaction simply because GOD made me different?

January 30, 2010 at 10:06 pm
(90) shauna says:

Hi,

I have read this entire thread and found much in common with many (about-to-be spouse, current spouse, about-to-be-ex-souse, etc .) I was touched by the previous post by an aussie ……”I DONT WANT TO BE WHAT DOCTORS CALL NORMAL. Does normal mean bulling, complaining, divorcing, being a gossip queen, never having satisfaction simply because GOD made me different?” —— I appreciate you wording it that way, Amy. Amen! What is so great about everyone else?

While I was reading this, my hubby looked at the screen. I said “just checking in with a support group” —— and he smiled. He said “I’m not that bad” —— I said “No, you’re not, but you’re the spectrum…..and I need support..” He said “yes, I’m on the spectrum” …..and smiled and walked awy. He knows I’m deeply in love with hm.
I am a first-grade teacher and I’ve had high-level autistics. So I knew what I was getting into. My hubby drives me INSANE sometimes. ****But so have other men! ****** He will never bore me, that is for sure. And I enjoy quiet and alone time myself! I listen to my girlfriends whose husbands say awful things to them if they spend a few hours apart (accuse of having affair, out spending money, etc) — so it’s a GIFT that my hubby will tell me to have a nice dinner. (but he DOES want to know at least that morning, changing gears at 5pm is not the best plan) ——– I coud go on and on, but overall I feel blessed to be with my hubby.

Thank you so much for all the sharing that’s on here. — It makes me feel good to know that other spuses go through the same thing and recognize it as simply different.

February 7, 2010 at 2:59 pm
(91) Melissa says:

I didn’t really realize he was autistic until now.. he has a son who is autistic from someone else – and a lot of his characteristics are the same as his sons. He is an extremely successful man, and that is because of is ability to focus on one thing – his business. He has routine, which is travelling a lot to his different offices located in the world. He at times seems self absorbed and I feel second place to his work. BUT I wouldn’t trade a minute of frustration because it is worth it. He is wonderful, smart, funny, and caring. I understand him and he gives me everything I need, with that comes loneliness and upset, at times, but it is also my responsibility to be strong. He needs me just as much as I need him, and staying strong and understanding him is the best I can do.
He is definitely socially awkward! Waitresses probably think he is insane, but I have gotten used to it and I smile when he is acting the way he does. Its almost comedic the way we act together when we are at a restaurant – he says crazy things, and I counteract it by teasing him.. We just work, but knowing that he is on the spectrum of autism helps to deal with the frustration that comes along with it. Reading these comments, books, and talking about the situation helps me to understand which ultimately helps our relationship.
Relationships are tough enough, so if you are with someone who is on the spectrum, you have to be fully honest with yourself in regards to what the future holds, and how his/her behaviors will affect you.

February 8, 2010 at 8:17 pm
(92) Shanel says:

It is very comforting to read about similar situations and know that my situation isn’t completely unique. My husband (AS)and I have been together for six years and in addition to living with each other, we both studied in the same program to be engineers together. I could really go on forever about the unique challenges of living with someone who has AS, but what has been the most challenging has been his completely different perspective – almost a different reality that he lives in. For instance, we could walk into the same room and I could identify that it is dirtly, clutter, and ultimately very uncomfortable to be in. He will not even recognize that he is walking over clutter in order to navigate through the room. He is oblivious. At the beginning of our relationship, when I asked him to assist me is chores, I often had to show him how things are done. Not how to do a good job, but how to mop, how to hang clothes properly on hangers. I blame this on his mother who greatly compensated for him. I have tried the oppisite approach: make him aware that something needs to be done and put the expectation on him to complete the task. As of late, this results in chores not being done and end up expending more energy getting frustrated and then doing it myself. At times, I think he is being malicious, but I know in my heart that he is the kindest soul and that if he understood how he was affecting me, he would alter his behavior.
The chores are an example. This type of behavior where he is oblivious to his surroundings and effects on others extends into many realms of his life. It has only been recently that he acknowledges that he needs to take responsibility to overcome the challenges of being autistic. Much the same way that I have had to accept that the world will not appease to all my needs as a physically disabled person. All in all, we make quite a pair.

February 12, 2010 at 9:32 pm
(93) Noname says:

I always thought my husband was special a genious. But then when in the graduate course he only got As and Fs + other behavioral traits I tried to read and thought it was Autism/Asperger’s. Had to save up a lot of money to get him tested and took 2yrs for him to agree. Yes, he has Asperger’s. He was 38then and now 44. More years passes he gets more angry, and most of his anger is addressed to me – even though we often live apart due to our work. This has escalated two times, and both times after he went for counseling (who were not trained to deal with Asperger’s patients though). I am finding it more and more difficult to connect to him. In the past he never hid anything from me, never lied. He does both and does not feel bad either since he feels I deserve it. He is almost always angry, angry with everybody, especially me! I am at the end of my wits. What can I do?

March 14, 2010 at 3:45 pm
(94) Alex says:

I strongly expect that my partner of 3 years who I have had no choice, despite my love for him and the pain I am feeling, is autistic. He knows there is something “wrong” with him but he is one of the nicest, kindest person I have ever met. Would it help him if I told him that I think he is autistic or would that do him more damage?

March 23, 2010 at 6:55 am
(95) Nichola says:

I am married to an autistic male. I will mention that conversations are even difficult with an autistic person due to what they perceive as important. Marriage of an autistic and non autistic is a recipe for a disaster. Even though my spouse refuses to indicate that he has autism and tries very hard to hide it, characteristics are ever present.

April 14, 2010 at 8:55 am
(96) Sue says:

Mine is a long complicated story but to cut it short..I am married to a wonderful man who i’ve known for 4 years now. We’re from culturally different backgrounds and religions so that makes life complicated before we start!! But he once jokingly said that he was autistic but you know, the more i think about it the more i think he might not have been joking! He’s very hard to communicate with and seems to be indifferent to anyone elses needs but his own, he’s almost incapable of showing affection or giving compliments but he tells me constantly that he loves me.I’ve tried explaining that sometimes you need to be shown that and not just told it but he looks at me as if he doesn’t understand what i’m talking about! I have been very frustrated since meeting him by his lack of input into the relationship and to those outside it seems he doesn’t care, but i know he does and have racked my brains as to why he can’t show it!! He just seems so detached from family life (I have two children from a previous marriage, and i know this isn’t easy for him either). After saying all this, he is in full time employment as a psychiatrist, so i often think how can it be possible for him to do a job like that yet be so oblivious and show so little understanding as to a relationship being a two-sided thing! I love him dearly and so want to make things better for everyone concerned but when i try to talk to him he looks at me blankly as though there is nothing wrong. If anyone has any advice or can reassure me in any way that this may be what is wrong with him then i would be most grateful.

April 28, 2010 at 1:23 am
(97) Special Someones says:

I have special someones that have autism, and the most severe problem is mean and crappy people… and the constant battle to keep them safe, and to allow them to know that they are precious, who they are.

June 4, 2010 at 7:19 am
(98) Linda Podesta says:

I have been married to my husband for 16yrs.We have a 15yr old son with HFA.Its my second marriage my other 2 children are 37 and 35 but not Autistic.I myself am 55.I realized my husband was on the spectrum when our son was diagnosed aged 4 they are like peas in a pod.My husband has been married 3 times before and lived with numerous woman,all the relationships failed.When I met him I noticed oddities but had never heard of AUTISM.My marriage is so lonely for me,I feel like I have 2 children.I have never has a Birthday card or present or christmas card or present in 16yrs of marriage my husband cant see the point of them!!My son is more HFA than his father and being diagnosed young he has got the correct help.But nobody understands Autism unless you live with it 24/7.You have to live around their world and needs you cannot fit them into our world.My husband takes loads of Medication to stop his Meltdowns.He has no friends but it doesnt bother him.I myself have been on Anti-Deppressants for 3yrs now my nerves are shattered!!! Somedays I ask myself why do I stay in this Marriage I do everything.My husband is on his own track!!he has seen me angry,upset,lonely,and no reaction comes from him.His words for Intamacy are its a Bodily Function!!!This is not a Marriage its a sentence and a very lonely one.People with Autism want to be married and have children like neurotypical people but the REALITY is they cant do it.No matter how naive and nice they can be they have Autism and should not Marry or have children,as Autism is Genetic and their children then have it.And it is us out there,their Wives and Mothers of their Children who have to cope with it all!!!!!!!!! You may be asking yourselves why have I not left the Marriage,when I have sacrifised the last 16yrs of my life to Autism.It has crossed my mind many many times-but how can I leave him he needs me just to cope in the world every day.He has tried to kill himself many times before he met me when relationships ended.He is also the father of my Son ,and neither of them asked to be born with AUTISM.But to anyone out there in a relationship with a person with Autism not yet married to them,or had a child with them PLEASE think about it very carefully,before taking on the commitment of living with them and parenting an Autistic child.!!!! You are going to sacrifice so much in life.And its soooo hard to deal with.My husband is like a 6ft selfish temper tantrumming child and he cant change he never will he is Autistic.Take Care of yourselves all you Wives and Mothers living how I do every day-only we know what its like!! Love Linda xx

June 20, 2010 at 7:40 am
(99) Dr. Patrick V. Suglia says:

I am autistic, and I have been married for eight years now to a wonderful life partner. It certainly CAN be done, and she is amazingly supportive and understanding of my autistic tendencies and ways of thinking. The fact that she so lovingly took the time to read about autism, and she takes the time to listen to me and help me out, shows that being married to someone with an Autism Spectrum Disorder CAN work out! And SHAME on the ignorant fools who left messages here thinking that autistics are “less than” and have lower mental capacities. Most ALL autistics I know have greater understanding of the unseen than that which is socially acceptable because their minds are attuned that way. Hence, the higher-functioning ones do tend to make their way through graduate school and earn doctoral degrees (cough cough).

June 29, 2010 at 2:14 pm
(100) Amazed says:

Wow! I am sitting here with tears because reality has kicked in from all of your words and the hope I have had for 10 years now is gone. This is ‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ I guess!

With no doubt in my mind my husband is within the HFA spectrum. He is the most pure, in some ways innocent and loving man and I love him so much! At the very same time he is distant, has tantrums and provides no intimate connection to our marriage.

Has anyone been to support groups or can provide sucesses? I really don’t want a divorce so just looking for any positive input you can provide as a next steps….

July 10, 2010 at 3:46 pm
(101) Mia says:

Living with a person with autism is like being on an emotional roller coaster, only you can’t see when your spouse will be in a good mood or bad mood. They both just come as a surprise. Each day brings a change in mood, depending on the situations that arise in the day. My biggest challenge is not getting my feelings hurt when my spouse prefers to be alone, which he does on occasion without any signs to suggest this to me. I like to help him, but he sometimes will be very blunt in his autistic way (not verbalizing it in an NT way). This either hurts my feelings or really makes me mad and just want to give up. It’s nice to vent to others who have the same issues.

August 9, 2010 at 6:04 pm
(102) sarah says:

Hi all
I stumbled across this site by accident – although I wanted to know more, so I carried on reading. I’m starting to wander if my other half has some form of autism – we’ve been together for 7 years, but he won’t open up to me emotionally, he tells me he loves me all the time; but doesn’t actually show it, he’s always asking if i’m ok, hes very clever, he gets awfully angry and or upset at the littlest of things, and finally he gets terribly engrossed in his computer games and makes funny little noises.
I don’t care if he does have some form of autism as I love him whatever, but i’m just interested to know why he does the things he does.

August 14, 2010 at 10:46 pm
(103) Liane says:

It has been so wonderful and relieving to read all the positive posts. Of course my relationship has been difficult at times. I can say for myself that I am definitely on the autism spectrum although I prefer to think of myself as an indigo child. I suspect my spouse is on the spectrum too, but I understand how hard that can be for someone to admit, especially later in life and with the stigma and negative views surrounding us aussies who would want to admit they had a way of functioning that the rest of society labels as “defective” or “retarded.” I’ll let all you negative bloggers know that I graduated from an ivy league college with honors, I am certainly not retarded. I might have a hard time understanding my husband’s emotions just as he has a hard time understanding mine. He often doesn’t want interaction when I do, or vice versa. We both get overloaded, sometimes by each other. We are both forgetful, need reminding, need routine. He’s absorbed in making furniture and music. I’m absorbed in reading, writing, research and my crafts. We both have tempers and can be very sensitive and at the same time unaware of each others feelings. But even after our worst fights we find a way to talk through our differences until we come to a deeper more loving understanding of each other. We don’t have communication “problems” we just have a different way of communicating, even with each other. If you are willing and have the patience, and really make the effort to communicate with love then you can usually make it to the same wave length. Maybe we shouldn’t be so concerned with altering the perception of our autistic spouses, but with altering our perception and evolving our level of consciousness. I once heard a wise phrase from an unknown sage, “love is not finding the right person, it is being the right person.” When you hold a mirror up for someone else you always end up looking at yourself whether you realize it or not. If you are tired of repeating things to your spouse and feeling like a maid then learn to be creative, write things down for him/her, leave post it notes around, or just accept that you have to repeat yourself and try to do it with patience. What’s so hard about saying something again? It only stresses you out if you get stressed out by saying it. See what I mean about changing your own behavior. If the whole world could be more mindful, patient, compassionate and understanding wouldn’t the world be a wonderful place? The world is changing, more and more people are autistic. Could it be that our human consciousness is simply changing to adapt to changing times and environments. Where would we be today if we couldn’t live with differences and look beyond them. We’d still be in the dark ages where women were seen as possessions, people of different races and ethnicities were made to be slaves, and homosexuals were seen as mentally ill perverts. The rest of the world changes and evolves around us, and guess what, so do we as humans whether we want to admit or not. If you are having trouble with your marriage and considering giving up, please take a breather and come back with a refreshed perspective. Go meditate at a Buddhist retreat for a week or even a day. Go to church and pray. Or if you can’t get away, take a bath or a notepad and think/write about your relationship. Take some time to recharge your sanity and come back with peace in your heart. My heart goes out to those who are struggling, feeling lonely, neglected, like maids. I HAVE been there with my spouse, even as a fellow aussie, because hey, each aussie is different. But you can and will find a way to connect and have a happy life if you are willing to get creative, think and see from a new light, and COMMUNICATE! My prayers are with you and may peace, grace, and mercy be with you as well.

August 2, 2011 at 11:38 pm
(104) mj says:

i realize this post is over a year old and you probably won’t se it, but just wanted to thank you for posting this – really spoke to my heart. :-)

August 18, 2010 at 9:46 pm
(105) Liane says:

Haha I thought I’d share this with you all. It’s very endearing how my husband writes. I don’t always understand it since he rarely uses proper punctuation but it’s one of his cute aussie quirks. Sometimes I do have to proofread and edit for him when he’s writing something for professional purposes. But, this is just something he wrote to a friend:

i’m actually playing the guitar right hand strum except i play lefty(its like looking at a mirror from a page of the chords and notes with all the friends back east in massachusetts of our small town of northampton before leaving it all behind sniffle**cry** for New Mexico to have this beautiful family now: I have a daughter now that is one or just turn one last week Nirvana Mariliana Kendall. And another just born 18&1/2 days old now Neveah Magdalena Kendall i thought she was a boy but nope im still very happy they both were early nirvana 2 months early only 3lbs 6oz when born yet very healthy now, i called friends to pray for her safety when she was born. and took care of her in an incubator for a like a month. Then now currently our new daughter spent a week in neo-natal care but now is out which i need to feed her a bottle seeing as my wife isn’t around with thee actual milk factory.

September 30, 2010 at 8:36 am
(106) kamill says:

WARNING: Be aware that this is a very negative comment, skip if you wish.
I was in a marriage with a high functioning autistic husband for 20 years. Now I am divorced ( he switched to another partner). He was very intelligent and could pretend anything. It was hard from the beginning, especially that it took 10 years to realize the hopelessness. I faced all the difficulties mentioned above, but never occured to me to leave the father of my sons. IT WAS A MISTAKE: I advise you all to leave as soon as you can manage all the problems arising(economical and emotional). It is not the hardest part to carry all responsibilities . The hardest is that when you face real problems, he will treat you and the kids as a thing (object) to be trown out. He can mask his lack of feelings only when he needs you, and wont hesitate to let his real interests arise. In the first 10 years it seems in minor problems, but it will deepen with every unresolved problems. It will overcome your limits and if you are unprepared, it can smash you when you have no power left. I Think the real problem was that he was pretending and masking. I always saw that he is a very polite and nice person, but my feelings told me that he was lying. Living with an autist makes you intuitive (you have to find out what he thinks), but this is problem when you see through the mask. There is no hope, it doesnt worth to serve a masquerade. To sum up: his needs can be satisfied by paid employees (servants) and he can make enough money for it. Even parents should not project their own feelings and needs for the autistic child! Face and see his real needs to avoid lies and masking for a lifetime . So you can prevent hurting others.

October 23, 2010 at 12:57 pm
(107) cm says:

I have been married for 30 years to a highly functional autistic man. I had always suspected that he had symptoms of autism but only recently I have understood it completely. Being married to an autistic man is not easy. I read in another comment that a woman said that in all her married years she only received 2 compliments. Same here, in 30 years I have only received 2 compliments from him. He doesn’t even understand the concept of jelousy, passion, faithfulness, loyalty and others. I have lived a very lonely life with him. I was always waiting and trying for him to change. The worst thing is I always thought it was my fault. But now I realize that he is never going to change. I have always been faithful to him because of my religious beliefs. But here is the kicker, he has not been faithful to me. The thing is he is a very handsome man, and women hit on him all the time. If a woman wants to have sex with him he just goes along with it, even though there is no emotion, passion or anything else. Of course these affairs don’t last. But the hurt that I feel does. And he feels no remorse what so ever. I have sacrificed my whole life as a woman being married to this man. I have lived a life without the faithfulness, affection, and passion that any normal human being needs. I am absolutely sure that if I were unfaithful to him he wouldn’t care (he has not a clue of what jelousy is), but it is against my beliefs. Every case is different, but if anyone marries an autistic person they must learn and understand that an autistic person will never change no matter what that person does. They might get more functional but essentialy they will stay the same.

November 2, 2010 at 12:33 am
(108) Lizzy says:

please forgive me and do not become angry with me for posting this, i am 16 and i have been dating my boyfriend who has autism for about 2 years now, ive never met anyone more loving and caring than he is. he treats me as if i were as delicate as a rose petal, hes fun and playful and can be very serious the only problem that i have is that when i am trying to get a word out he blurts out what he is thinking about or how he feels before i am finished. he is very social and inquisitive and i love him very much. in fact he is SO much better at a LOT of things than i am and i go to a school for “gifted and talented” teenagers. is theyre something im not seeing? because a lot of your comments are HATEFUL and DISCOURAGING. i could never imagine being with another person. i love him with all my heart and he constantly tells me that he loves me back.

November 8, 2010 at 1:00 am
(109) jacob says:

im living with my girlfriend and she is very autistic her mother and sisters told me she could never have any kind of functioning relationship with a man but i fell in love with her anyway.
She is almost alwase putting me down and telling me im wrong (her father has observed us and says that she is “verbally abusive to me”) i come home form work and go right to doing her bidding untill she lets me go into my room to spend time on my computer.
I am not autistic and she is verry autistic she could never live with someone like herself im a pashent coolheaded man and have NEVER yelled at her.
this is verry hard work but every time she lets me take her into my arms and kiss her i remember what it is all for. sometimes i even have tears of joy and she askes what im crying about i tell her “nothing”.
you should never pair an autistic person with an autistic person she would never get along with herself.
if like me you are in love with an autistic person just know that you are commiting every waking moment of your live to there joy but even after weeks of abuse one hug will make it all worth it!

November 15, 2010 at 10:36 pm
(110) Louise Weston says:

Dear Lisa,

My name is Louise and I am the Author of “Connecting with Your Asperger Partner:Negotiating the Maze of Intimacy”
I read the stories on your website a few months ago and was going to write a comment but have been snowed under with my marketing and sales. I am interested in any comments you have about my book. I hope that couple’s relationships will be enhanced through reading my book.Kind regards
Louise Weston

November 17, 2010 at 3:38 pm
(111) Me says:

I am a 41-year-old female married to a 48 year old man with autism. Neither of us knew that he had autism prior to my marrying him. He had been diagnosed with a mental illness that was supposedly treatable with medication, but he did not want to take the meds. We found out because we had a child and the child has been diagnosed with a high functioning form of autism. My husband never received intervention growing up. My son has. Already it seems that my son is doing better as a teenager than my husband has done as an adult!

It is challenging! I feel that I was duped by not knowing. Had I known, I would not have married him, I don’t think. And, knowing what I know now, I would not advise it unless you are prepared to devote your entire life to raising an adult.

The main reason that I have stayed so long is because of my son. When he leaves, the chances are pretty good that I am gone.

November 24, 2010 at 4:11 pm
(112) Mary says:

What if you didn’t know about austism in the 80′s when you met your intended. 25 years later it starts to drive you a little crazy. Especially if you have a son “just like Dad” and don’t want to put some other wife through this. Any support groups out there?

December 2, 2010 at 10:55 am
(113) Diane says:

I have been married for 42 years and have always known that there was something “wrong” with my husband. He held a job for 30 years, we have 2 grown children, he has his masters in education, he is loyal. Sounds great, but I have been alone for the 42 years. The kids have asked me “what’s wrong with Dad”, I never had answers until I started to read about high functioning autism. It’s like reading about my life with him. He doesn’t fit all of the symptoms, but he lacks emotional attachment and therefore incapable of having an intimate relationship with me. I have felt like I was living with a room mate and it was my job to do everything and make every decision. He is not able to do the simplist task, he just doesn’t understand and he doesn’t learn when I try to tell him. He memorizes how to act, how to do things. He doesn’t share his thoughts, information. If I ask him what he thinks, he tells me what he has read. He is a stranger to me. He can talk to one of our children on the phone, hear important news and never tell it to me. If I ask him if he liked the movie we just saw, his reply is “did you like the movie?” He will agree with anything I reply. I am frustrated now because I have years of examples to explain, there is so much to write. I am worn out, but filled with relief to think I finally have an answer. Where do I go from here? Are there support groups for people like me? I need to deal with the anger and frustration I have from years of trying to have a normal life with him, feeling like I have been providing a life for him while sacraficing my own.
Help!!

May 18, 2011 at 9:06 pm
(114) Bonnie says:

Sounds like my husband. I don’t know of a support group… perhaps contact an Autism Agency and ask them? If not, perhaps we all need to start one!

I can only imagine how you feel… it has only been 6yrs for me, and I feel very full of anger, frustration and exhaustion… and married to someone I still don’t know.

Would be happy to talk privately, if you’d like.

July 25, 2011 at 10:25 am
(115) lost - for the last time says:

Lord knows it’s time for me to let this go. I pray god gives me the strength to do what I need to do and do it with a open, clear and peaceful heart.

December 4, 2010 at 12:03 pm
(116) Diane says:

For “Me”
You are staying for your son, that is good, but when there is no reason to stay, get out, run as fast as you can. Have a life, you are still young, don’t wait 20 more years and then look around and see how alone you are. The kids have their own life, you can only help yourself, no one will do it for you.

December 24, 2010 at 4:42 pm
(117) Sarah says:

Is this post for real?
People ask for diversity in racial marriages, diversity in and amongst everyone, color, creed, sexuality- on this planet.
To be honest- this post reminds me of a post in the 1950′s asking “is it really okay for a white woman to marry a black man?” I swear.

January 13, 2011 at 11:36 pm
(118) Ryan says:

I wanted to thank Amy Penny for her post here a year ago today. I echo her words. I have an IQ of 138. I was diagnosed with autism when I was an infant, but my parents never made it known to me. I had to put the pieces together myself, and although they’ve never been willing to tell it to me, I’m certain the doctor who diagnosed me was right. I just put the pieces together a week ago, and I’m 24. When I read your posts about struggle in marriage and impatience with your husbands and wives and not feeling their affection, it devastates me. I’ve had a rough social life and never had a girlfriend, and it’s hard to get girls to even talk to me. Yet my heart reaches out to give a woman all of my affection I can. It’s just hard to show it. On the inside, people with autism are some of the most affectionate people out there. They love you more than you realize. Please be patient and understand this. The truth is, they’re suffering on the inside more than you are, because they can’t give you what you want, even though they think they are. It’s beyond their control to give it. They just can’t do it, even though their intentions are the same, if not better, than non-autistic people. But they give it with their heart. Even if you don’t know that, they do. Sorry if this sounds long-winded, but I just wanted to get the truth out there. Hope this is of help to everyone.

April 25, 2011 at 9:54 am
(119) Ann says:

On one hand, I feel sorry for you. But, on the other, I feel that what you’re saying just goes along with the disorder. You think it’s harder for you than for us. Typical lack of empathy. Again, it comes down to you. How you feel. How much you care. How much you wish you could show it. You you you.

January 14, 2011 at 4:47 am
(120) Andy says:

Hi I am autistic and am reading all the posts on here about the challenges that come up in a relationship, I have to say one thing that us autsitc people can do is always try to look ways to improve, even though autisim can’t be cured theres always a way to improve on anything

January 20, 2011 at 9:34 am
(121) Guest says:

I read all the comments posted. What struck me is that there appears to be not THE one type of autistic spouse, behaving in a certain way. I also see that within my own family. Both my son and my husband are on the spectrum. While I would agree that a person like my H should have never married, I can see my son leading a decent relationship with the right person. Like others said, it must be due to early intervention, and also my son’s desire to manage his issues the best he can. What cannot be said for my H, who is in utter denial, and quick to blame me for everything wrong in our marriage. He has no interest in accepting that he has autism. I could accept that fact, if only he would stop blaming me, and start working with the issue at hand. Our marriage has gone beyond repair, and I am now trying to figure out how to get out of it, before my health is impacted further. I have given him the 20 best years of my life, that’s enough.

To those who are pre-marriage, or pre-kids, I would like to pass on the following advice. Take it SLOW!!! Take your time to get to know them, and then some. My H was a super nice guy before we got married. We had a sex life, agreed on two children….and boom, once we were married, I got cheated out of the number of kids, and our sex life and intimacy ended almost overnight. Like a switch that flipped. Honestly, I did not see it coming, but I remember the tears when he dumped that crap on me. We were together for four years prior to marriage. So, look closely, and don’t ignore red flags in the rush of infatuation. Be smart, and listen to your instincts. If things bother you now a little, they will bother you more much later. If they are unwilling to accept responsibility for their actions and hurtful words, get away fast. It will not change. I will be leaving this marriage with a lot of emotional baggage that I now need to sort through, while he will continue to be blissfully oblivious, and blaming me for the breakup of our son’s home.

July 24, 2011 at 2:00 pm
(122) PD says:

WOW! thank you. This is my life, except we have no children together. I love your advised to the ‘pre-married and pre-children’. I didnt find out until after we were married. Everything changed and stopped as soon as we were married. Thank you.. Thank you…. Thank you!!!!

I pray God blesses you with a wonderfully caring, nurturing, emotionally satisfying, sexual, and all around engaging partner who will keep you giggly, emotionally happy, safe and secure for the rest of your life.

BIG HUG!!!!!

February 9, 2011 at 5:27 pm
(123) Gina robinson says:

i would like to talk to bettina as also have a autistic husband

February 12, 2011 at 4:51 am
(124) becki says:

hi Im married to a man that i think has autism , my son is 7 has autism and i see amny things in commoon but in different way of an adult he works he can function but i cant communicate with him unless its a fight and he has really bad tempers of throwing things everytime i tell him to do anything .Im really tired of this and thinking of leaving him cuase i dont find this relationship normal , he never shows any affection towards me and he has certain obsessions like the dishes msut always be in teh dishwasher or the clothes must be washed everyweekend all weekend washing clothes . im just lately living a separate life dont even tell him the half the the things i did on my daily days . but i just want to know this isnt normal and if other women out there or men are going through the same thing as me cuase thsi is really fustrating , and i want to live a happy life and i want my kids to have a happy momma and i want them not to see me fighting all the time .

February 15, 2011 at 11:29 pm
(125) Bamboozled says:

I have an AS son and an ASD husband. We figured out hubby was AS after our son got diagnosed and hubby saw son was just like him.
2 years into our marriage, when our son was 3 yrs old, my hubby divulged that much of the history of his life that he had told me was all made up- fantasies and imagination. I had been hoodwinked. He was a pathological liar. I hadn’t minded the lack of friends or social desires, the rigid routines and rituals, the inflexibility and control issues, and the other stuff. He was very affectionate. But the lies were just so devastating and weird! Now I see my son creating a fantasy world around himself! I separated from him, but I’m a cancer patient and I reconciled with him because I needed help with our son- it was more than I could handle on my own. Now I live in this relationship void of trust and shattered intimacy. On top of it, I’m a cancer patient and he’s SO SELF-CENTERED! Everything is always about him and it drives me crazy that he can’t put things in perspective for my sake, out of respect for what I am going thru or to help me out.
I feel bamboozled and hoodwinked and trapped.
My environment is toxic and abusive.
My heart bleeds for my son… Wish I could give him better…

April 7, 2011 at 3:48 am
(126) D H says:

I married my HFA husband 10 years ago. He was diagnosed 3 years ago after my counsellor suggested that he might be the problem rather than me and he only agreed to the assessment to prove me wrong! He was the most perfect man for the first few months, then gradually the effort he put in to get what he wanted, no longer needed, was replaced with his true behaviour e.g. echolalic, non-communicative (unless it was about his profession where he is at the top), non-empathic, mysogonistic, lies and story telling, etc. He is a completely different man to the one I married. I’m all out of empathy now because no matter how much I try to help us, he just doesn’t get it or even want to try to get it. As far as he is concerned, i am the problem, he is perfect, and the female psychologist was wrong in her diagnosis, even though he has two children on the spectrum as well as a brother, neice and great neice.

It’s not just the autism but also the personality. I think that if you have a partner on the spectrum who has a lovely personality, then it might be easier. The only word of caution I would utter is – if you know that you are involved with someone on the spectrum, then be aware that when you get older, and you are maybe unwell and you hurt, and you need and hug, sympathy and empathy, you may find that your other walks away when you’re crying, shouts when you’re doubled up in pain, goes to the theatre rather than visit you in hospital, and still expects you to cook, clean and look after him, even though you can’t. But good luck to all of you who keep trying.

May 18, 2011 at 7:13 pm
(127) Bonnie says:

All too true… Thank goodness for a site like this to feel connected to other people, who share similar experiences.

April 19, 2011 at 8:26 am
(128) Claudia says:

I always thought my husband was different… and that’s what I fell in love with him. I, like so many others here, have a daughter diagnosed with PDD-NOS. Upon hearing that at the doctor’s office, I immediately said, “No she doesn’t! She’s just like her father. That’s all!” And then it hit me. My husband is very awkward socially and physically, but his emotional range, care, and compassion are beautiful. He is hilarious. He has an unwavering faith in God and loves to teach us about the Bible. He tries at relationships, but a lot of times I have to “translate” for him because he will say something completely out of left field. He is faithful, loving, and a wonderful father. He is extremely high-functioning, but definitely has his “quirks”- mostly social and physical. I wouldn’t trade him for anything. We rarely argue, but when I try to bring something up, he doesn’t understand. He tries so hard to understand, though. Yes, he does see things from a “self” perspective- but I know a great many who people have the same issue without being on the spectrum! Living with my husband has been carefree, easy, and joyful because he understands his diagnosis and handles it with humor and grace. He understands that he has choices. Even though he feels a certain way, he chooses to act differently because he understands that his anger or frustration may be irrational. Yes, he becomes very overwhelmed with anything that’s new, but he will CHOOSE to try. He just started karate- which is HUGE for him. He is so physically awkward that he came home with his head in his hands and he said, ” They’re going to put me on youtube”. So hilarious! Of course they aren’t- I think he only half believes it ;)

April 25, 2011 at 9:28 am
(129) Ann says:

I have been married to a high functioning autistic person for 19 years. If you are considering marrying such a person, I have these words for you: run, don’t walk (AWAY). They will never be able to love you like you love them. If you have children with them, chances are some of your children will have symptoms (2 of my 3 do). So you will be fighting an uphill battle all your life: to ensure money comes in, to ensure bills get paid, to be the primary parent, to undo your spouses bad influence on your kids (which you can’t), and to basically think for him/her for every little thing. There will be no teamwork. After all, he/she is an “I” first and foremost, never a “we”. Bottom line, you will be stressed out and very very lonely. If you think you’re too in love to walk away, think again. This loneliness will chip away at your love steadily until that love is just not enough.

April 30, 2011 at 2:56 am
(130) Lauri Fitzsimmons says:

I completely relate Ann. My heart breaks for you.

July 25, 2011 at 10:31 am
(131) lost - for the last time says:

I thank God I dont and cant have any children with this man. I can walk away from anything and any one. It’s time to put on my thinking cap and start formulating my exit strategy. Nothing on this earth is worth all the emotional pain and emptiness you have to endure. this aint love and it aint living. I want to live!!!!

September 16, 2011 at 2:06 pm
(132) Sharon says:

Yes. I completely agree with you Ann. My husband’s symptoms took yeeaaars to reveal themselves to me. I got sick of being the fault all the time, having to do everything all the time, the way he made me look like trash in front of my children, the way he controls every aspect of our lives, if he doesnt get his way on things, the quiet anger that turns into the quiet revenge with no warning, the constant alterior motives, serving the one sided sex with no intimacy issues, not respecting personal boundaries. He is truly a mess, but he blames you for it. My husband masks these symptoms extremely well. You would have to live with him and deal with him in an intimate manner for a very long time. He keeps his guard up and the mascarade going very well.

May 8, 2011 at 7:50 pm
(133) Burnt Out says:

I have been married for almost 1 year. My husband has autism, and I knew that before we got married. I figured it can’t be that bad to be married to someone with autism, I love him…not even 2 weeks into the marrage I found out how hard it really was. Now just a year into marriage I am so ready to be done. He makes me feel worthless to him, he makes me feel like I can’t do anything right and he sure has a way at blaming me and making me feel like I have more flaws than good in me. I am really struggling because I am trying to do everything I can to make our marraige work. He can’t tell me he loves no matter how many times I let him know that I need to hear it, I say it at least once aday but I really wish he could say it to me first. He always tells me I am to stressed out and take life to serious, I tell him it is our relationship, he blames my job…he doesn’t understand how alone I feel, I wish he could meet me half way in our marriage but I know that is not possible. He keeps mentioning wanting kids, he has one from a previous marrage, sees him 1-2 per month. I feel like if we decide to have kids together that is another thing I need to figure out how to juggle into my life to when I already feel so overwhelmed being the money provider and the maid. the only thing he helps out around the house is mowing the yard…long grass and weeds growing everywhere I decided to mow it since he was still sleeping yesterday, as soon as I started the mower, he woke up and just watched me mow the whole yard and he had the nerve to tell me that he has been waiting for me to do it since it was my turn to help out in the yard…are you kidding me!!! ARRRRGG!!!! What can I do to survive this marrage??

May 18, 2011 at 7:24 pm
(134) Bonnie says:

Thank you all for sharing. Tears of relief and sadnes in my eyes from reading this thread.

I got pregnant by a man, who I now know is Autistic. He is a good man, and I thought, why not marry him and make a life? He was ok with it too.

But I would only be repeating everyone else to say what happened next…The biggest thing for me, is feeling so alone, and like I am in charge of 4 people’s lives (as we have 2 kids) I am a very strong person, and interestingly enough, I used to be the Program Coordinator/Behavior Therapist for Children with autism Spectrum for 8 yrs. I had to quit that job because my husband was full time work!

I feel like a single mom, and like my husband is a teenager (at best). We can agree on things, and he’ll do the oppostite. He has impulse control issues, anger issues, social issues, etc etc.

I feel like a failure because I have a psychology degree and was considered a very gifted expert in the field of Autism. But living it 24/7 for 6 years has dwindled my self esteem and zest for life down to almost nothing. I am always tired. I am always exhausted. And I am so so tired of repeating myself and having to stay on top of everything (house, bills, birthdays, groceries, communication, etc)

I feel guilty for wanting to leave my husband, as he is a good man, and he says he loves me more than anyone and that he shares more with me than anyone in his life. A previous post mentioned the anxiety and the fear of being abandoned by a spouse that an autistic can feel. I know that is also him.

But at what point do you have to just walk away and admit you can’t take care of yourself and your kids, and your husband without totally losing yourself? I wanted to be a doctor, and had so many plans for my life… but taking care of him has meant my dreams, my life, and my needs forever take a backseat as it’s all about him.

And then again, guilt and failure make me stay….

All feedback would be greatly appreciated.

June 11, 2011 at 7:09 pm
(135) Lizzie says:

My boyfriend is autistic and sometimes I find it very hard to get anything emotional from him, because I am a very sensitive, emotional person. But the fact that he is autistic makes him fascinating and I think that is what keeps us together, because I understand him and his brain better than anyone else does in the world. He might not understand what i’m trying to tell him, or why I am saying or doing something and he may not respond when I tell him that I am really happy with him and that I love him, but when he does say he loves me, I know it has come from the heart and it feels so much more real and kind of perfect in a way. People may say that I will never get what I want from him, but they don’t know the connection we have, as unusual as it is. I know that I am a part of him now, and he is a part of me. I am living proof that an autistic boy can love and be with a normal girl.

July 5, 2011 at 3:37 am
(136) Sally says:

Oh I am so glad I found this. I am married for 10 years to a man who is highly intelligent but socially inept. He told me he had a form of autism but I brushed it aside. I have had such a lonely time and raise our 4 girls alone actually do everything alone. My kids school arranged some help for me with their social worker and it is only after talking to her and her confirming the autism that has made me realise why he ticks the way he does and now I am looking for support and advice. My eldest daughter shows the same traits, I have never taken them seriously but now I must. Divorce? Not an option for me. I will find a workaround.

July 23, 2011 at 6:24 pm
(137) Ana says:

My ex boyfriend with whom i am very much in love still has alot of these symptoms too. But i can only guess. He has a million friends, but conversations are never deep. He would never tell me he loves me, and when he did he would take it back the next day. He can’t have me to close and is shy to let people see us being affectionate. He pushes me away but doesn’t let me go, calls me several times a day and always brings me presents after a trip. I am constantly confused about his feelings toward me. He is very much into sports, obsessive if u ask me and has a high education. Schedule and timelyness are extremely important to him. A day of whatever comes comes can not happen to him. Before when i said something touchy he would immediatly change the subject, now he knows to allow some. I have the feeling that he has allowed me in more then he would have wanted…oeps and got used to it but will not admit it. I know he is always happy to see me. What can I do??? I love him.

September 16, 2011 at 3:10 pm
(138) Terry says:

I am at awe that I awoke this morning at 4:30 am and finally accepted the person I married. I read all the comments last night. And it was a relief that I am not alone even though I am. I thought I was crazy. I have this husband who cooks, cleans, works, is a great father and yet I am alone. I can go days not informing him of where I go and what I do, what I read, who I talked with, who I go to lunch with…the list is long. He never seems to notice and now I know he probably does not. When I finally break down…he listens for a bit and then something I say strikes him and he is off…he can talk and talk and talk…and soon my words are forgotten and I again give up communicating. I can relate to those that say run…I ran and when I left he awoke and tried to show me he could change…no more criticizing, no more his way is better, no more picking at the unimportant…I came back. We had two children. Our son was diagnosed on the spectrum. We had his first school evaluation and the school had booklets to fill out about his behavior. As I read …I thought these apply to my husband…my husband is and will forever be who he is….perhaps he and I can create habits to fill my emotional needs…perhaps I need a support group ..perhaps I need to leave again and this time with two kids who love and are loved by their father ( I can’t and won’t)…perhaps I will stay and just dream…and keep reading posts of how to try to improve and how some on the spectrum figured out how to cope and how we who have little
insight into spectrum try to cope, try to remember that we are not objects.

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