mind blindness - does anything really work? - Mothering Forums
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 27 Old 01-23-2012, 04:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

has anyone found anything that really helps for mind blindness? 

 

i'm kinda at my wits end with my DH. he has asperger's and lacks empathy and the ability to be truly considerate of others. it's really affecting our marriage and it's starting to really cause problems with the kids. 

 

i am wonder if there is *anything* he/me/we can do to make this better. 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#2 of 27 Old 01-23-2012, 06:20 PM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 822
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)

He has to become self motivated to learn this.


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is online now  
#3 of 27 Old 01-23-2012, 07:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

he has said to me in the past he wishes he were able to be more empathetic. but he's never been able to follow through on any of the stuff i found on developing empathy for NTs. it doesn't make any sense to him. is there anything like this that makes more sense to people with AS? i told him something that happened that other day and he very carefully said "that must have sucked." but it wasn't very believable with his tone of voice. BUT at least he's trying. and he recognized it as a situation he should be empathetic in. but he still seems really lost. 

 

 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#4 of 27 Old 01-24-2012, 03:55 AM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 822
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)

I like reading books about relationships and communication skills.  It doesn't really matter which books in particular, they are all good.  Love Languages, and Difficult Conversations are a couple I really like. 


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is online now  
#5 of 27 Old 01-24-2012, 05:51 AM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I'm current in therapy to work on coping skills and remedial social skills training for my AS, but he absolutely needs to want to develop more successful techniques. To be honest, if I didn't have kids, I wouldn't want to change anything at all, but I'm aware that many aspie moms can grow quiet cold and distant once the infant years are over, so I'm kind of preemptively working on that.


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#6 of 27 Old 01-24-2012, 09:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

hmmmm my DH has read a number of books (he hates non-fiction) but they seem to have no affect on him at all. shrug.gif it's like he can't make a connection between what he reads and how he acts. 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#7 of 27 Old 01-24-2012, 11:36 AM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Better than books, I find, are movies and tv shows- especially subtitled foreign ones, as it's much harder to connect the words to the facial expressions. It really makes you work to figure out what motivates people when you have to dual-process. If he's not a big fan of subtitled movies, watching any decent drama, thriller, or mystery show/movie with an in-tune neurotypical can also help you sort out all the meanings, but the aspie needs to be open to admitting that they don't understand what's going on- something most of us have actively worked to avoid doing.

 

If you can find a therapist with experience in working with adult aspies, I would really push you in that direction. If you can get DH to agree to go to one session, hopefully the therapist can speak his language and explain why it's so very important for him to learn some new coping skills.

 

One of my pet interests is child development, so I'm very aware of how kids are impacted by their upbringing, and am aware of my role as a mother. Getting him to see the impact his parenting will have on the kids long-term, I think, is your first hurdle. Once he gets it, it might be easier for him to get help. It's a tall hurdle, though. People, NT and AS, don't like thinking they're bad at something, especially not parenting. I wish I had more advice, but I don't know what kind of person your DH is like, and you know what they say- if you've met one person with Asperger's, you've met one person with Asperger's.

 

Good luck to you!


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#8 of 27 Old 01-25-2012, 06:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by ErinYay View Post

I'm current in therapy to work on coping skills and remedial social skills training for my AS, but he absolutely needs to want to develop more successful techniques. To be honest, if I didn't have kids, I wouldn't want to change anything at all, but I'm aware that many aspie moms can grow quiet cold and distant once the infant years are over, so I'm kind of preemptively working on that.



so interesting erin. i am still on the fence about my mom having AS. so many things fit perfectly. i was adopted and i think my mom was pretty lost. my dad was the really attentive one when we were babies. he did the night time parenting. (this was a long time ago... in the 60s, so i think it's pretty weird) i always joke my mom took a permanent mental vacation when i was about 7. but really she was mostly checked out my entire childhood. i was the kid who never had a bath, clean clothes, a signed permission slip, my homework done on time, the project done when it was supposed to. even now i mistake attention for love. and once, i said something about not really remembering her to be physically affectionate when i was little, and she blew up at me and said that she was very sorry but there was no way anyone could have held and cared for me like i wanted. ouch. this is  like my DH too, his perception and my reality are just worlds apart. since he's always overwhelmed, he always feels like he's doing way more than he should... where as i see him doing very little. it's such a frustrating disconnect. 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#9 of 27 Old 01-25-2012, 08:04 AM
 
RiverTam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: St. Louis, Missouri, USA
Posts: 935
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My son learned his theory of the mind in speech therapy. His speech therapist presented lots of stories with pictures and some dialogue and then discussed with DS what the people in the story were thinking.  At home, we practiced this some more with a social skills picture book that showed both actions and thought bubbles. I am positive that a speech therapist could do this with an adult as well as a child.

RiverTam is offline  
#10 of 27 Old 01-25-2012, 08:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by ErinYay View Post

Better than books, I find, are movies and tv shows- especially subtitled foreign ones, as it's much harder to connect the words to the facial expressions. It really makes you work to figure out what motivates people when you have to dual-process. If he's not a big fan of subtitled movies, watching any decent drama, thriller, or mystery show/movie with an in-tune neurotypical can also help you sort out all the meanings, but the aspie needs to be open to admitting that they don't understand what's going on- something most of us have actively worked to avoid doing.

 

 


good idea! i wonder what i can talk Dh into watching with me. he watches only horror and adventure. i wonder if he would watch dramas? 

 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#11 of 27 Old 01-25-2012, 09:35 AM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by umami_mommy View Post


good idea! i wonder what i can talk Dh into watching with me. he watches only horror and adventure. i wonder if he would watch dramas? 

 



I'm not a huge drama fan (though I've just gotten into Mad Men) but well-crafted films/shows of all generes should have a compelling level of human interaction. If he likes sci-fi at all Battlestar Galactica is GREAT and there were a number of times I had to ask STBX-DH "Why is she making that face?" etc. That said, I'm a horror buff and there's a dearth of good, relationship-heavy genuine horror. The Walking Dead (AMC series) is incredible- zombies and complex characters. I'll think on it for a bit and get back to you, if you wish!

 

 


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#12 of 27 Old 01-25-2012, 09:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

yeah, he *hated* the walking dead! LOL. 

 

you know what else he likes? shows like cops, judge judy, dog, repo, and other "reality" shows that make me run screaming from the room..... 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#13 of 27 Old 01-27-2012, 07:48 AM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Would he watch a crime drama like CSI?


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
#14 of 27 Old 01-27-2012, 08:39 AM
 
cyclamen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,289
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by umami_mommy View Post

yeah, he *hated* the walking dead! LOL. 

 

you know what else he likes? shows like cops, judge judy, dog, repo, and other "reality" shows that make me run screaming from the room..... 


how about "the wire"?  That's a police procedural (i guess) but it's also drama with a lot of interpersonal interactions.

 

cyclamen is online now  
#15 of 27 Old 01-29-2012, 01:25 PM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I know this has been an inactive thread for a couple of days, but I was thinking about this.  OP, how much do you just use words with your DH?  He needs to really work on his mind blindness, but sometimes people without ASD or non-verbal deficits need to work on using words.  I've really brought my ASD son along by just telling him explicitly what I'm feeling or doing, or describing the actions of others as best as I can tell.  It also trains me to be clear about what I say.  If you tell him directly how you feel, or what you would like him to do for you and the family, I'm sure he'd eventually absorb some patterns of what behaviors connect to what feelings or other's expectations of response.  Try "When the kids cry, they like you to give them a little hug and ask if they are OK" (just an example) rather than "Can't you be more caring to the kids?"  Maybe you already use words a lot, but if you don't, realize that they are a necessary means of getting the idea across for anybody who has difficulties with nonverbal communication.  Also, avoid thinking stuff is common sense.  Your idea of common sense and his might be vastly different.  I have way less trouble than my ASD son but I still get in trouble in new work situations when people give me incomplete information and think my common sense will fill it in.  It can be very frustrating to tell people, "But which action wasn't nice".  Your DH might not be at the point where he's ready to admit he doesn't even know what he did wrong when you're upset with him.

 

Another thing about empathy is that people with Asperger's may have it and show it differently.  I'm going to see if I can find you a link to a blog where I found a really good description of this.  For example (thinking of the blog here) a man might see his wife fall down and hurt her ankle.  He helps her up, asks if she can walk on it, and then she says "Yes, I'm OK".  If the wife is fully adjusted to dealing with someone with Asperger's, she realizes that by seeing she wasn't injured seriously, this was a form of empathy.  If she's not used to dealing with Asperger's, she says to herself  "He didn't even give me an extra hug or slow down walking for me".

 

I think it's a two way street when married to someone special needs.  You both need to work on yourselves.


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
#16 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 08:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by FarmerBeth View Post

 

I think it's a two way street when married to someone special needs.  You both need to work on yourselves.



i agree. i am working hard to try and understand my DH. it's hard right now for me to accept he has a permanent condition that will never go away. when i say it in my head, it still hurts in my heart. so i am still trying to get there. it's a hell of a lot of work, esp. when he is not so interested in seeing he could *improve.* to him, it's still everyone else. i have one special needs kid, and another who is a serious handful. and so i feel like i have very little left for my DH. esp. when he is so demanding of me. i *get* that this is his way of coping that he learned from when he was small. but it still grates on me when he can't/won't make himself lunch or give our daughter a bath. intellectually i know (now) that it's because he is too overwhelmed, it's just hard to accept sometimes, yk? 

 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#17 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 09:12 AM
 
beachcomber's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Posts: 1,449
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

My DH has Asperger's - self diagnosed. Well, me diagnosed. He read the list of stuff for adults with AS and grudgingly agreed that the shoe fit. Anyway, I found that it helped me change my expectations of what he's capable of and what he should or shouldn't be able to manage. Part of this is him, for sure. But part of it is you, too. You need to look at him and see what his limitations are and work to adapt where you can. It's made me, for example, feel less guilty about taking time for me. He used to complain that *he* never got to have Guys' Night. I'd point out that he was welcome to take time for himself. Then he'd counter with "I haven't got anybody I'd want to do that with." I used to feel bad about that. Then I realized that his choices were his to make and mine were in my own realm.

 

Determine what you want from the relationship given that you're living with someone who has deficits. But consider that you can't make him be someone he's not.

 

Edited to add: here's a link to a blog on autism and empathy: http://www.autismandempathy.com/

 

I wanted to echo some of Farmer Beth's comments around Aspies having trouble processing the information overload and therefore seeming to lack empathy. Something I learned about DH is, for example, when we're arguing, he gets really cold and distant. After reading an article about empathy and AS, I realized he may be shutting down because of the volume of the emotions I was putting towards him. I gave him the article and he totally agreed that this was what was happening for him. He just couldn't handle what I was giving him in terms of the emotions. After that, I changed how I approach him when we disagree.

 

Also, we have been engaging in Positive Behavioral Support as a strategy with DD to help reinforce more appropriate behavior in her. Well, I have started using it on him and it works amazingly well on him, too. Go figure!


Weary SuperMama superhero.gifto my  amazing neurodiverse 6 y.o. DD hearts.gif and to my on-the-go neurotypical 3 y.o. DS wild.gif

beachcomber is offline  
#18 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 09:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
umami_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: home is where the magic is
Posts: 5,131
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by beachcomber View Post

 

 

Also, we have been engaging in Positive Behavioral Support as a strategy with DD to help reinforce more appropriate behavior in her. Well, I have started using it on him and it works amazingly well on him, too. Go figure!



thanks for this link! all the rest of what you wrote. yup. it's where i have been at since this past summer when i realized everything about him that completely baffled me fit very neatly into the AS box. looking at things in the context of NVC.... i am running on empty right now, and that is a big part of why i tend to get frustrated rather than feel compassionate. i am also realizing my mom likely has AS too. my first H was a sociopath (i don't mean this is hyperbole, he was for real). learning that my second H is also not capable of being who i wanted him to be was (is) a huge blow to me. i am still reeling inside from it and trying to incorporate into my understanding of my marriage and what i want from my life. it's been tough. but i *am* trying! however, i do believe i can never really ever be exactly who my husband expects/wants/desires me to be. we are just too different. i just wish he would stop being angry at me for it. 


"Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift." -- Mary Olivercoolshine.gif

umami_mommy is offline  
#19 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 09:54 AM
 
beachcomber's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Posts: 1,449
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

You're welcome. We have to help each other as much as we can, hey?

 

Something else I've really tried to take on board as part of my daily life is to make time for me. Even if it's 5 minutes and a cup of tea or my favorite kind of tea instead of the cheap stuff. Just that one little thing makes a difference in my day. I'm often running on empty as well and I know that when I don't work on myself - time, special little things I can do for me, getting a 5 minute break once a day, etc., - I run dry and then the whole house falls apart. It's hard when everything hinges on our ability to cope. But we're the moms. It always falls to us, no matter how involved our partners or extended family may be. We still have to duct tape the family together.

 

So, try to make even 5 minutes and a up of tea for you each day. One little thing can make a big difference to your outlook.


Weary SuperMama superhero.gifto my  amazing neurodiverse 6 y.o. DD hearts.gif and to my on-the-go neurotypical 3 y.o. DS wild.gif

beachcomber is offline  
#20 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 09:57 AM
 
beachcomber's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Posts: 1,449
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I also want to add taht you have some damage to work through with your first relationship. Your ex was a major problem. That doesn't mean your DH is equally dysfunctional. He has deficits, yes. But that doesn't equate what you had to handle before. Try to look at DH independently of your ex. Hard as that is. I have my own issues with my ex who had a lot of aberrant behavior - addicted to sex, junk, drugs, alcohol, a non-coper, etc. It took me a long time to get over the damage to myself I let that relationship cause. If you can, do that work. Try to put your ex and your life with him in the past, where it belongs.

 

You totally have my support and my empathy in what you've had to manage.


Weary SuperMama superhero.gifto my  amazing neurodiverse 6 y.o. DD hearts.gif and to my on-the-go neurotypical 3 y.o. DS wild.gif

beachcomber is offline  
#21 of 27 Old 01-30-2012, 12:36 PM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Not an easy road, is it?  Make sure you don't give up on letting your DH know what you need.  Tell him "I'm too tired right now to make you lunch, can you do it today?"  You might have to admit that you'll need to ask him because that's how his brain works, but you shouldn't resign yourself to thinking you have to do everything and never have breaks.  Assert your needs, schedule them on the fridge if you have to.  I go through this particular issue with my DH due to his ADHD, and I can remember people asking how I could put up with needing to remind him of everything.  But, he does give me what I need because I don't accept less, and I literally schedule it (he gets a list). I have my own schedule to make me work, he's no different. And in fairness, lots of spouses of NT men have similar complaints on the personal growth board.  Lots of men aren't raised in a culture of "This is what just needs to get done" outside of their paid work, so they need to be told.

 

If you are telling him and he's still not helping, be really clear that it's not something you feel you can handle over a prolonged time and you need him to work on this for you to have a relationship that works.  Make sure he gets in the habit of using words, too, instead of just expecting you to be a certain way.  Words are great!  They clear up all kinds of misconceptions!  Just make sure you word things in terms of "I need or I feel" instead of "you are being..." or "you never/always": that just gets hurtful and confusing.


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
#22 of 27 Old 01-31-2012, 03:42 AM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 822
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)

Make sure he works on recognizing his own emotional needs too.  If he doesn't know he has emotional needs, he can't see them in other people either. 


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is online now  
#23 of 27 Old 01-31-2012, 02:44 PM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by EarthRootsStarSoul View Post

Make sure he works on recognizing his own emotional needs too.  If he doesn't know he has emotional needs, he can't see them in other people either. 



Really good point!  I think this is why my DS has problems recognizing people's needs, and I hope we're able to help him grow through this before he might, one day, have a significant other.


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
#24 of 27 Old 01-31-2012, 03:06 PM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

The emotional needs of aspies/ auties can vary tremendously, of course, but, at least for me, what I need to feel good emotionally is: very, very little.

 

Pretty much, if you tell me you love me, I assume that to be true until told otherwise. Acts of affection feel smothering, because, yeah, I know. You love me. I get it, now stop pawing at me.

 

The way I usually explain it is that everyone has a vessel that represents the amount of love/affection/attention, all the emotional stuff that they need to thrive. Most people have a really big vessel that needs constant refilling, but they're also able to *give* a lot to others. Me? I have a Dixie cup. It's really easy to keep it full, which is nice, but it's *EXTREMELY* difficult to give enough to others.

 

I have 2 little girls, and their dad and I are getting divorce, almost entirely because I'm not capable of giving him what he needs emotionally. Logically, I need to give everything I have to the girls- not in a martyr-y way, but in a they MUST have love from their mother, and I have a limited store. It's what's best for all of us at this point, and things are going pretty well. I don't think that needs to be the end result for every ASD marriage, but, let's be honest. It's hard to be in love with someone who has to google "emotional intimacy," and still doesn't know what it means.

 

So, long stupid story short, please don't get your hopes up for radical change, but also don't let your loved one sell him/herself short. For most of us not-so-neurotypicals, we're as good as we're going to get right now today, but we are capable of change. We might be more compassionate, more empathetic, over the years, as we learn new coping skills, but today? You're seeing the highest functioning Me possible. 

 

EDIT: I was diagnosed at 30, after being thought of as being *just* a "quirky, gifted, ADHD nerd," which likely has a lot of bearing on my level of connected-ness and functioning. Your ASD kiddos may very well have a TOTALLY different outcome, and I hope they do, if they want. I'm actually really happy to be "alone," and look forward to my life as a celibate single person. It makes others sad to think of me being "alone," but I like it. So, you know. Grains of salt, etc etc.


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#25 of 27 Old 02-03-2012, 04:15 AM
 
EarthRootsStarSoul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 822
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ErinYay View Post

The emotional needs of aspies/ auties can vary tremendously, of course, but, at least for me, what I need to feel good emotionally is: very, very little.

 


Emotional needs go far, far beyond social interaction.  I'm talking about ALL the stuff going on in a person's head.  The more in touch a person is with all of their own secret mental stuff, and have a trusted partner they are able to share it with, the more they can see it in other people.  Give your partner what you want back.  Ask them to show you all their favorite 'mental' places.  Ask your partner to take you with to their secret hideouts. 

 


bellyhair.giftreehugger.gif     coolshine.gif      greenthumb.gif     read.gif
EarthRootsStarSoul is online now  
#26 of 27 Old 02-03-2012, 06:31 AM
 
ErinYay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Ft. Wayne, IN
Posts: 705
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)


Quote:
Originally Posted by EarthRootsStarSoul View Post


Emotional needs go far, far beyond social interaction.  I'm talking about ALL the stuff going on in a person's head.  The more in touch a person is with all of their own secret mental stuff, and have a trusted partner they are able to share it with, the more they can see it in other people.  Give your partner what you want back.  Ask them to show you all their favorite 'mental' places.  Ask your partner to take you with to their secret hideouts. 

 



I'm autistic.

I don't have secret emotional needs and it's a struggle to get enough alone time in my head as it is. 

It's not like all of us are NT somewhere deep inside. Autism is a pervasive disorder because it impacts every part of a person. Inside my heart of hearts, I'm still autistic and I just want to be in my own head, by myself.

 

These two books should be extremely helpful, though not all that cheerful as a lot of the advice is to, pretty much, give up on your needs being recognized and met, for those married to partners with AS/ASD.

The Other Half of Asperger's Syndrome

Asperger Syndrome and Long-Term Relationships

 

I hate to be all Debbie Downer, but AS is a disability. Just as no one would push their loved one with epilepsy to just stop seizing already, or push their partner who, for whatever reason, can't walk without assistance to run, no amount of love and talking is going to create a need or ability for deep, meaningful emotional relationships. It sucks for the NT to go unfulfilled, and it sucks for the aspie to always know that he/she is falling short, despite giving all there is to give.

 

To put it another way, the aspie has $5. No matter how badly you need $100, or $50, or $6, you're out of luck. You can have that $5, but after that, there's just no more money. And it's a shitty feeling all the way around.

 

For example, my relationships are very meaningful and deep for ME, but not for the other person, usually. Having very base, simple needs means it's easy to have those needs met, but very difficult to meet the needs of NTs. 


Doctors aren't out to kill you or your children. Childbirth isn't inherently safe. Science is actually smarter than your intuition. Lighten up. Use sunscreen.

ErinYay is offline  
#27 of 27 Old 02-03-2012, 08:38 AM
 
FarmerBeth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Northeastern Nova Scotia, Canada
Posts: 808
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

There's a big range for autistic people in what their emotional needs and awareness are.  I see it daily with the kids I work with.  (Even though I sub, I've had a long term assignment with the same kids and they happen to all be on the spectrum).  It's not a matter of  being  "NT" deep down, just variances like everyone else.  I agree that a certain amount of acceptance of the AS partner just being who they are is necessary.  In fact, expecting people to change instead of accepting is one of the main causes of relationship break-up with all relationships, not just those involving special needs partners. 

 

Also, part of being an autie/aspie is that most people have a hard time knowing what their emotional needs are.  My son is one of those rare kids on the spectrum who is excellent at reading faces (he had really extensive testing with this this year, he's way above average at reading faces) but because he doesn't know what he needs to feel better, he doesn't know for other people need.  So he does very inappropriate things to cheer people up or show affection.  Even though he knows a certain face means "angry", he has no clue when he's angry, or what would help him not be angry.  That doesn't mean he doesn't have needs, he just can't tell what they are (although I totally believe him he never has felt lonely, but that's just one type of feeling)

 

Also, I know NVLD isn't quite the same, but I know from being around people on the spectrum that this particular is.  As a kid, everyone told me I hugged "wrong" and my Mom even told me to stop hugging because I obviously didn't like it.  My MIL told me this year that it was the first time I had ever given her a hug without being stiff as a board.  Then I got,"It's OK, I've figured out by now you're just like that".  Anyhow, there's always been times I wanted a hug, it just felt like too much at the same time.  I can manage a "real" hug for DH and my kids, and even then, if I get unexpectedly hugged or hugged if I'm overwhelmed, I can't stand it.  But that's not the same as not needing a hug, or not needing to give a hug (although personally, I'm not so bad if I initiate the hugging).  Anyway, I know my son still needs hugs, too, even though his hugs are not like my other kids' hugs.

 

Anyway, I don't know what the OP's husband's range is when it comes to feelings and needs.  A diagnostic label doesn't tell me that.  Yes, it's not fair to expect him to change more than he can.  But if he's open to wanting some help, it won't hurt to try to help him notice what his emotional needs are and try to help him get them.  Maybe what might really help is him finding a therapist he's comfortable with.  And if he's not comfortable with that, that's OK, too.


Busy keeping up with three children and an awful lot of chickens!

FarmerBeth is offline  
Reply

Tags
Special Needs Parenting

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off