Partner is undiagnosed HFA/emotional abuse?

I think my OH has High functioning autism, we have been together 10 years and even in the very begining he made odd comments that were innapropriate (told me I had bad teeth while out on a first date, got his whole family together on xmas day to tell them he didnt like any of his presents, not feeling any awkwardness in these kind of situations and just saying he is 'just being honest') there are many many other examples over the years.

He hates social situations and would have to have a few drinks before he went. 

He thinks he is always right and will never consider my opinion or feelings, he acts selfishly and always puts himself and his needs first, he is obsessed by his hobby and spends all of his time and money doing it.

He is always commenting on disgusting smells that I cannot small, annoying noises that I cannot hear, he is also obsessed over househld cleanliness and has routines and rules for most cleaning that he follows himself but I also have to follow, if I dont he gets very angry, he see's it as me not caring about him.  If I dont do what I say he gets angry, if I disagree with him he gets angry. He gets angry a lot.

He tells me what to do all of the time, and mostly watches me to check I am doing it right, he hates if I watch him or am even near him when he is cooking for example.

I have to answer my phone immediately or he gets angry, but he doesn't have to answer his phone because sometimes he is busy.

If I go out I have to come in the exact time I say I will or he gets angry, this doesn't apply to him he can come and go as he pleases.

He NEVER says sorry or accepts any blame for anything, he would rather chop his own arm off than be in the wrong.

There is so much more but I just wanted to try and give you an idea, I know that he is HFA, but I think that he also verging on to being emotionally abusive (I am not saying that autism equals emotional abuse just that in my situation he seems to have learned strategies to deal with how he feels that are emotionally abusive if you see what I mean)

How can I deal with this, are there any support groups for adults in a relationship with someone with undiagnosed HFA

  • He may indeed have HFA but that's no excuse for being a control freak.

  • Please can all commenting bear in mind that we're hearing from one partner in a relationship that includes two people. That means we don't diss the person who has had no input who and has no right of reply.

  • POST BY ASPERGERIX copied to this thread (Had to delete dupicate post sorry aspergerix) 

    Does he recognise and acknowledge that he is being emotionally abusive?

    Does he want to stop being emotionally abusive?

    Does he want support and help to learn to stop being emotionally abusive?

    If the answer to these questions is no then you have to get out of that relationship, you have to end it, you have to disengage and leave because it is a toxic relationship that is irreconcilable and bad for your mental and physical health and well being and happiness.

    Autism is not an excuse for emotional abuse.

    Emotional abuse is not a symptom of Autism.

    Autism may result in emotional abuse and may explain its source but it does not excuse it nor can it ever be condoned. The autistic person has to change or they have to live on their own, they as an adult have no right to make your life or anyone else's miserable.

    There is no such thing as undiagnosed HFA, it must be an official medical diagnosis.

    You may  think he has HFA traits, but there are many other personality types that share such traits.

    There are many other personality types that can be emotionally abusive, narcissists, sociopaths, introverts, schizoid personality and more.

    Abuse is about power and control and if he is not willing to admit to it and change then you have no chance of any remedy and no support for you alone will ever suffice.

    Autism or no Autism, there is no excuse for physical or emotional violence and both physical and emotional abuse are against the law.

  • Sorry about the duplicate post, I'm not sure how that happened and thanks for the replies.

    The answer to all of those questions is no, because he doesn't think he is emotionally abusive and would be so upset if I were to say that I thought he was being. He doesn't think he needs to change because in his mind he isnt doing anything wrong.

  • miamoo said:

    He doesn't think he needs to change because in his mind he isnt doing anything wrong.

    They never do.

  • Miamoo their is no defence for emotional abuse and bullying.

    If someone feels emotionally abused and bullied then they are, irrespective of what the perpetrator says or thinks.

    The abusers often claim the victim is imagining it or is over sensitive or that it is the victims fault and provoked by the victim but these are all lies.

    From what you have said you are in a very bad place and when an abuser is in denial and driven by anger nothing will change nothing can change but can only get worse and you do not have to put up with abuse nor tolerate it nor learn to live with it.

    Love and abusive power are incompatible.

    I don't know your dependence or independence in the relationship financially or psychologically and how long this has been going on and why you have lived with this suffering for so long but you are reaching out desperate for help so you need to get out of this relationship.

    I suggest you google emotional abuse and the law in the Uk and there are many charities and others that offer advice and help and support.

    But I must stress that it is now against the law and he could get into a lot of trouble if he is manipulating you and forcing you to stay in a relationship that is toxic.

  • Hi, I’m NT and my husband was diagnosed ASD. Please understand that my reply is not in any way dismissing possible abusive behaviours, just a different way of looking at your situation.

    You ask how can you deal with this?  It’s ok for you to say he’s HFA but do you actually understand enough about it to know how it affects him. You’ve only described his behaviour that you find unacceptable – does he have any good points? If not why are you still there?

    Are you able to discuss calmly how his actions make you feel? Are you able to compromise?

    You can’t pick up on the disgusting smells & noises that he comments on, be very glad that you aren’t suffering from sensory overload, and don’t dismiss it. His need to clean in a certain way is exactly that, his need, and you ignoring it, is you ignoring him and his needs and therefore in his mind you don’t care about him.

    The rationale is, if you cared about me you wouldn’t cause me harm by ignoring my needs.

    Timekeeping, either early or late could easily be dealt with by a quick text, so there are no surprises or disappointments. Yes, it may seem like a double standard, but to him it’s about you keeping your word.

    Is it pure anger and controlling behaviour he suffers from or is it due to the sheer frustration of not being properly listened to and understood which leads to the anger? Has this always been the case or has it got worse the longer you have stayed together?  Are you expecting him to behave like an NT?

    My husband and I managed a relatively harmonious life by simple respect and compromise. If I said I was going to do something, I’d do it. He hated how I cleaned the kitchen and yes he’d watch me and pass comment – we struck a deal, he looked after the kitchen his way, I looked after the rest of the house my way, and that was how our life together worked.

    As for support groups, good luck in finding one, I was recommended MIND (even though my husband was not mentally ill), the Samaritans (as I must have been depressed living with an Aspie) and could possibly go bowling every 1st Tuesday of the month with an adult Autistic group, when all I wanted was to learn how to understand him better once he’d been officially diagnosed. Between us, we worked it out for ourselves, because we wanted to.

    There is another group – Different Together – that is designed for NT’s with ASD partners, you may find that helpful.

    I wish you well.