anyone else given up on relationships --- permanently?

haven't had one in almost a couple decades, and don't foresee one anytime soon, if ever. it's just too hard being around someone, i need to do things my way, i hate cleaning things (except washing the dishes, i love to cook, although it's often the same exact thing), i don't[ bother screwing in light bulbs that burn out (i use solar lights i carry around and prop up, for crying out loud), and my house is so messy and revolting that i can't have anyone in...  i seem to have my own slug-like rhythm, which i don't want others intruding on. in short, i am impossible to be around, and i find others impossible to tolerate, and probably will lash out at them sooner rather than later.

i am very private, very into myself, and don't let others into my world. having another person around, on an intimate or even semi-intimate basis, would just feel like an intrusion. i'd be like a cat on ice. literally. just super uncomfortable and exposed. i can't stand that. it feels like part of my aspergers - this need to be private. there's the social person (try to act normal) and the private person (secret and hidden under wraps). with 'close' friends, i generally am around them only for a couple hours at a time. that's it, without exception.

i feel some in the asd community are very very isolated, while most seem to be fairly or very social. i guess i'm asking the totally isolated ones for their input. 

Parents
  • I had a period of 5 years where I was single and didn't pursue a relationship with anyone of the opposite sex.

    I lacked the desire for a relationship and never felt like my authentic self when I was with someone who I thought I could potentially have a romantic relationship with.

    I did have a male flatmate (purely platonic, we'd been high school friends, my parents were less than happy at me sharing a house with someone who wasn't pursing a marriage with me but then I think they thought he might be gay. 

    During that period I explored my autism a bit, despite being diagnosed in childhood I had an extremely strict upbringing that although supportive came with EXPECTATIONS. I basically masked 24/7 from age 7 until I went to university, appearing home every Friday to be the perfect daughter for the weekend and then returning to the university town on a Sunday night to repeat. 

    I eventually got enough self esteem and sense of who I really was and not who I was being expected to be, I got out there and met some people. At first sticking to people my parents would approve of (masking the whole time), but then I expanded out a bit and eventually met the person who I ended up marrying. 

    I now have my tiny friendship group and my husband. My parents didn't completely disown me but I thought they might at one point. His parents are nice but clearly don't get it all the time

    I tell everyone who was where I was that you can't be happy in a relationship until you're happy in yourself. Shake off the expectations and learn who your authentic self is and then go and present that person to the social world, without an agenda, and see where it takes you. If that's what you even want at all. 

  • I tell everyone who was where I was that you can't be happy in a relationship until you're happy in yourself.

    this a key teaching of buddhism/mindfulness/Zen. Isn't that interesting Slight smile

    they refined it to 

    "you can't be happy until you're happy in yourself."

  • That's very interesting.

    I've not read any Buddhist texts, more weird religious hang overs but the concept is definitely sound.

    I think for autistic people especially, trying to find where the mask ends and the true person begins is a challenge. In learning who you really are you can break down some of the unhealthy coping mechanisms that turn off NTs though you might find your authentic personality can be difficult for the average NT as well.

    This isn't a bad thing really, the relationship won't work when someone is masking, no matter how pretty or well constructed the mask is. 

  • you're a great thinker

  • I wouldn't get it before, but it makes a lot of sense to me now, since I started going out without mask, after my relationship collapsed, which was like that, so yes I'm partly guilty of breakup, I was not happy with her, because deep in me I was unhappy with me, and she did not like me without mask.

    for a year now, I'm trying to learn to like me me, and not be afraid going out without mask, there was few conflicts, but hopefuly they behind. and it will be easier now, that I know I'm normal :)

    and so I can continue my road to enlightment :)

Reply
  • I wouldn't get it before, but it makes a lot of sense to me now, since I started going out without mask, after my relationship collapsed, which was like that, so yes I'm partly guilty of breakup, I was not happy with her, because deep in me I was unhappy with me, and she did not like me without mask.

    for a year now, I'm trying to learn to like me me, and not be afraid going out without mask, there was few conflicts, but hopefuly they behind. and it will be easier now, that I know I'm normal :)

    and so I can continue my road to enlightment :)

Children
  • You'll feel better without the mask. 

    Without masking I feel like the relationships that I form are with people who are interested in me and not in an idealised version of me. It means that they are not disappointed when I don't live up to their NT standards or fail to perform well enough in the NT world. 

    I do sometimes find myself masking as a defence mechanism but never around people I want to be friends with.

    The down side is that I mask a lot at work for various reasons and a new nurse started who I'd like to be friends with but it would be too complicated. I don't mix my work life and personal life.