My girlfriend and I have been together for 4.5 years, we are engaged and in December she was diagnosed with autism, high-functioning. She was 28 at time of diagnosis which hasn’t helped.
I am a ‘neurotypical’ and I am trying to understand why she does certain things and sometimes I know I don’t react in the best way I possibly could, which is why I am turning to this site, in hope that there may be other partners out there that have coping strategies or can just help me to be better for her because currently it is quite lonely and sad and I feel like I’m suffocating a bit. It’s a heavy weight.
I am reading ‘An Adult with an Autism Diagnosis’ by Gillian Drew in an attempt to be more understanding.
I work away quite a bit as a Tour Manager, for musicians, which can make coping more difficult. For both of us. In August, I will be travelling around America for almost 7 weeks. Currently, I have been in Scotland for just ONE week and we have had an ‘autistic incident’. I don’t know how to refer to it, so apologies if I offend anyone.
Emotions when touring are tenfold.
Also, sometimes, when I return from a tour; it feels like I’m out of her routine a bit and she needs to readjust to my being there, which can be upsetting.
If there are any books to be recommended, or other sites, I’d be truly grateful.
Thank you in advance.
Check out 'Agony Autie' on YouTube for a 'crash course' on autism...
This one of hers is great, but really recommend watching most of her videos, they really helped me figure out alot
That was really great, thank you! It’s nice to know I’m not alone and I think that was where I was starting to struggle most. Feeling like no one understands me, and also not trying to make this about myself.
Luckily; we have pretty good communication, which we have been working on more since diagnosis. But at the end of the day, I’m a human, a sensitive one at that, so I cannot always hide my feelings when something she has done affects me.
Really appreciate your replies.
So, I'm in a similar situation with my wife (she's NT)... she gets upset by things I say / how I act sometimes and feels she has to 'hide her feelings'.
We're still working it out but I think there are 2 key steps:
I know what you're thinking... "What are YOU doing to make things better? It seems a bit one-sided..."
Well, the answer is, I got diagnosed, I'm trying to understand better what my 'trigger' areas are but honestly? I'm a dog that's been trying to be a cat its whole life and now we know I'm a dog it's time the cats in my life tried to be a bit more dog-like - or at least understood that barking (autistic shutdown/meltdown) is in my nature and it just means I'm excited or nervous or confused, it doesn't mean I'm going to bite you... Similarly, I like to wag my tail (stimming) - you think it's weird, but it makes me feel good and doesn't do any harm, so let it go.
I keep getting told by 'friends' that I "Need to meet her half way..." - that would be such a relief, as it would mean I could 'back up' from the meeting at 90% position I'm in now... but that's not what they mean, they mean 'stretch another 5%' to meet halfway across the current gap... and that just isn't viable.
Original Prankster said:Similarly, I like to wag my tail (stimming) - you think it's weird, but it makes me feel good and doesn't do any harm, so let it go.
I love your posts OP. You're amazing.
I've had a lot of help from people on this and other sites and I'm just trying to 'pay it back' if I can.