I'm just feeling very, very upset, broken hearted and very lonely at the moment and need to talk about my current situation.
I separated from my Husband in January (we are still living together for the children). I drove the decision. I saw a pattern over the years and couldn't figure it out. I put it down to me most of the time. We were both very busy with life and as time evolved we pretty much were living different lives. I did try to bring things together but this was always an effort as I'm quite impulsive and like adventure while my husband is at his happiest on his computer. Arguments or even debates were always weird. We never resolved any issue as I always felt my husband instantly became defensive even when it wasn't about him. I would say to him I notice your becoming defensive and why? He would always deny it and get angry. I would use metaphors and he could never relate to it, he can never see my point of view. A number of times I would implore with him and be upset and cry and he would just stand there or get angry with me. Also, lots of gaslighting. A real lack of empathy. It just never made sense to me!!
On the other hand, he is fairly hands on with the kids, got involved with football, scouts but doesn’t really like to get involved in the running or pushing things forward. In fact, he has never come to me with any problems, worries about the kids or anything really. We both love going out and doing family things. I practically got him his last job, any property, I organise getting the house painted, electricians. If I ask him to do something to help sometimes he will but I feel that most of the time I find he isn't receiving these requests in the manner they are meant. I'm not 100% sure but I feel like he is suspicious or defensive or something. I find him very self-centred but I feel this is something he is not aware of; it is not intentional. I hope I am making sense. I knew something wasn't right and said this to my ex-husband a number of times but he is in denial. He feels I am being dramatic, critical all the time but he says this even when I am just genuinely trying to help. He is blaming me for everything and when I told him I wasn’t happy in our marriage and was very worried about it (I was very upset and crying) he simply said he was happy with things and left the room as if it was simply my problem!!
4 Weeks ago my youngest son 9 years old was assessed and the psychologist pointed to ASD. With the conversation we had after I also discussed the boys(9, 13 and 15) and when my husband left the room, I respectfully briefly discussed my husband. Everything the psychologist said fell into place. With my new "goggles" on now I am seeing things completely differently and things make much more sense. I am just so broken hearted and worried and over whelmed and time is of the essence, especially with the schools!!
My youngest has been having awful problems with his school. Even though we managed to advise the teacher and Principal that he is not simply a bold child, that he has behaviour issues they are being very unhelpful and making things much worse for him. His teacher even dragged him by the shirt out of the toilets where he ran to get away from her! Dealing with this on top of everything else!!
Sorry huge moan, feeling like screaming really. Any tips on potential ASD husband struggling to come to terms with his children (whom he loves) situation and his possible situation?
Hi - Sorry to hear of your situation. I'm an AS bloke - married, one child. I have great difficulty with events or situations that are open-ended. I have a real need for certainty. I can live with gentle chaos by building in 'slop' for everyone else's behaviours that are out of my control.
I find 'arguments' difficult because I do not feel the emotions that are presented to me - I am in problem-solving mode when the other person only wants me to listen or they haven't finished venting - this can come over as cold and uncaring.
Have you considered putting your feelings in writing to your husband so he has plenty of time to think and create a proper, thoughtful answer rather than being forced to perform in a high-stress argument? AS people tend to be open and honest but insecure in a world where we realise that we don't communicate in the same way as everyone else.
Thanks for replying! Just did it few days ago and hasn't got back to me yet. Checked in on him this morning and gently asked if he had a chance to look at it. He seemed surprised and I think he was hoping that I wouldn't be coming back about it. Yes I think this might be my best approach and I read to write/speak simply and not get into debates and speak emotionally, using "I".
Can you explain "slop" - sorry I didn't understand that sentence.
I have constructed a mental model for everyone and everything - think Wii-Me characters - that I attribute behaviours to - I know how they *should* function.
But people are unpredictable so I add a margin of chaos to their profile for me to accept the crazy, illogical things that they do without thinking - loading the dishwasher wrong, mixing knives & forks in the drawer, putting their keys in the kitchen where they will forget and then panic in the morning trying to find them - minor, little things that I would never do - I strive to be perfect - but other people are a bit (very) random.
If I didn't build-in these allowances, I would go nuts at every transgression of 'the rules of logic'.
Some AS people don't have my ability - I'm a twin so I had to develop a working model for people from a very young age - my NT-twin was a model to copy that was available 24/7 for me to measure - and judge.
Thanks Plastic, I see what you mean. Yes that makes sense. I feel sorry for him. I am finding this very difficult but I think this is harder for him as he is finding it hard to process and understand all this. Whilst I am trying to keep him informed with everything going on, I am trying to do it gently and in "little pieces" as opposed to giving him too much information at once.
You might find that he's absolutely as normal as can be (you found him attractive years ago) but life has become too complex for him to handle in a normal day - having to process work, people, traffic, life etc. all needs extra processing - he's likely to be at 99% stress when he walks in the door. Ideally, he would probably shut himself away for a time doing something 'controllable' (video games, making things, train-sets, watching TV) until he can re-balance his brain and be 'normal'.
If he walks into chaos and things demanding his attention and action, that extra 1% load will make him blow up in an apparently unreasonable manner - totally out of proportion to the 1% that you perceive has been added - you will get the full blast as the 100% overload is dissipated in an uncontrolled way.
He will feel bad about doing it and afterwards but will not have a clue how to 'fix it'. You will then be annoyed and upset and neither of you will be able to communicate with each other.
Chucking kids in the mix will just make the problem worse.
If you can understand this, you might be able to reach him and get him back as before. I don't want to make is sound like you have to do all the work - but he won't have a clue of how to fix this - you may have become an enigma to him - so he's lost, stressed and apparently angry when you approach him..
Persevere with the writing to him - take all the emotion out of it.
Does he have any hobbies or interests that you can engage him with? Something to break the ice?
Yes I think your right. This has been very helpful. I'm just finding it hard and am doing everything right now. Feeling sorry for myself. I have had to take time off work and finding this all overwhelming. It just feels very unfair. But I understand. Its a bit like waking up to a new brain and the world has changed.
We watch tv together but don't talk. Think it suits both of us at the moment as we are both worn out.
Yes I think he does think I have become an enigma and an enemy who broke our family "for no reason". Hopefully this will all work itself out over time, I am sure it probably will.
Anymore tips please send them my way. This is all very new to me - thanks Plastic!
You're most welcome.
Are you able to dump the kids for a weekend and go somewhere that he finds relaxing - fishing, model shows, aircraft museums? This will take his stress down to low level where you can chat to him about what he would like to do in an ideal world.
Remember to keep any emotion out of it - take pen and paper and create a visible plan for your possible futures as a logical exercise in planning.
make sure you don't apply pressure to him - if necessary, write everything down for him to work on as homework - let him know there could be light at the end of the tunnel if you can work out a solution to al the stress.
Also - remember that your son's diagnosis has made him realise things about his own behaviour that he can't process - his self-image may be very, very low - and if he sees his life/marriage falling apart, what can he possibly do - seeing as he might think himself 'faulty'?
His life is 99% stress from work/life and 99% stress at home - he's cornered with nowhere to go - and no skills to do anything about any of it - it's missing from his programming. He will withdraw from everything.