Thursday, December 1, 2011

When He Won't Acknowledge He Has Asperger's

It's been a couple of years now, and my aspie spouse still won't read anything about asperger's syndrome.  I recently asked him if his mom, his sister, his wife, and a psychologist all told him they believe he has asperger's syndrome . . . would he believe it?  You know what he said?

 "Probably not."

Well, alrighty then!  So . . . that leaves me where?  Right where I've always been.  Reading, researching, doing all I can to communicate as best I can.  It's all on me.  As it's always been.

Gulp.

Big Sigh.

I'm learning to take this one day at a time.  One issue at a time.  The big picture is overwhelming, I know.  But at this exact moment, I'm doing okay.  Live moment by moment, ladies!  That's the best advice I can give you (or anyone, really).

24 comments:

  1. That's a shame because the number one criteria for a successful aspie marriage, according to Dr Attwood, is that "both partners acknowledge the diagnosis".

    You're doing extremely well considering that this isn't the case but it must put a massive strain on things.

    Even if he's not up to agreeing with the label, perhaps you can get him to acknowledge certain symptoms?

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  2. I have Aspergers but as a 45 year old I have difficulty with the title. For whatever reason PPD-NOS works better, don't ask me why. Maybe the wiki definition helps. My wife recently left me. A couple days later a was looking through a depression course I started a couple of weeks ago and one of the sections is for family and friends and how to help someone with depression. I am ordering the section next week and offering it to my daughter. I will offer it to my wife as well though that boat may have sailed. I have no idea what the content is going to be. I see so many links between depression and Aspergers in what I read and live. I am wondering if any one else looked into this and can give an opinion if this is a possible way to help others with their feelings and what they can do to help.

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  3. Hey darlin, I'm at the point where trying to see anything but the day to day is like trying to drink the ocean. Just breathe and as you wrote - take this one day at a time. And for what it's worth - all my kids were diagnosed but my wife when she was diagnosed just blew it off. It's not even worth bringing it up anymore. What will they do with that information? Change? Ha! WE have to change, go crazy or just run away. Hmmmm, well I'm staying and am only slightly crazy at this point!

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  4. My husband will admit that he has Asperger traits but doesn't seem to think that is any big deal. It's not a problem for him so why should it be a problem for me. Despite me telling him that being married to him is killing me, he just stares at me like it means nothing.

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    1. I feel I am in a similar spot only I have an Asperger child as well and physical disabilities myself. I have separated for 9 months and tried again with same old patterns having emerged after a matter of a couple months. Being married to this/him is killing me again...very interested in anyone with similar situation.

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    2. Hi, every time I read a blog I am astounded at how they are describing my life. My partner also accepts the Aspie title but also doesn't think it is any big deal and will not accept that it is a problem for him or me. This is all very new to us. I am replying to this comment because I too have tried to convince him that it is a problem by telling him that it is killing me. He never has any response. Last night I told him that his emotional with holding was as hurtful as beating me up and I was ready to drive my car off a cliff. Again no response. I was devastated that the prospect of my killing myself didn't register at all and my obvious distress was unnoticed. I gave up and set to quietly crying myself to sleep. To my great astonishment, he turned up to have sex and cuddle me for the night. I don't know if he got my feelings but his action was enough to keep me going for a bit longer. Is this what it will always be like?

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    3. I've just split from my partner because he refused to admit he has asperger, he said i insulted him by asking him, even though i said we could work through it. He has all the signs and whenever i tried to discuss our relationship and my feelings he would just give me a blank stare also. He was incapable of seeing my point of view on anything and always came across as rude and aloof. His saying was 'its just the way i am' and like the other post he would always say i dont have a problem. Sorry to say it but the best thing to do is just leave, for you own mental health other you will start to think your going crazy!!

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  5. Wow, Gavin, that's a huge compliment that means a lot because it comes from you. Makes me think I'm doing something right. Thank you.

    aspmom

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  6. OMGSH. you have to see this. once in, check out james robinson. He had a procedure for asperger's.

    The question is........would you really like your aspie to come out a differnt person????
    I would have to think/pray long and hard~!
    If this link doesn't work, google the words: ingenius minds science channel


    http://science.discovery.com/tv/ingenious-minds/


    -aspielover4christ

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  7. correction, check out JOHN (not James as I previously stated) Robinson on ingenius minds/ science channel

    http://science.discovery.com/videos/ingenious-minds-john-robison/

    Magnetic forces can induce electrial current, stimulating the brain that is lacking socially!!

    I don't know if I would want my aspie to do it. Though hard, I fell in love with the brain he has now! :)

    Food for thought for sure.
    Please check it out, aspmom, and consider posting it for all your bloggers to see:)
    -aspielover4christ

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  8. Hey, at an autism conference I heard him talk about having that done. It only lasted a little while and then he lost the benefit (ability to empathize more)....

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  9. Could have been a "placebo" effect, I guess.........but still really cool info!!!!! It really honed in on how since their brains aren't distracted by social situations and thoughts, they can focus on other material often resulting in genius activity. This is because instead of using up brain activity for socializing, the have the brain space to FOCUS obsessively & master a topic:) One became one of the top Pin Ball Machine winners in the world. Mr. Robinson was able to invent cool music instrument parts.

    aspielover4christ

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  10. I just realized something: good psychiatrists not only can tell when someone has Asperger's, then can also tell when someone *doesn't* have Asperger's.

    So, suppose you do get your husband to a good psychiatrist for an appointment or two or three. After asking your husband a lot of questions and maybe scanning his brain with an MRI (more info at http://brain.oxfordjournals.org/content/125/7/1594.full !), either this doctor will diagnose your husband with Asperger's and confirm your suspicions...

    ...or this doctor will conclude that your husband actually doesn't have Asperger's and treats you the way he does for other reasons instead of Asperger's, confirming your husband's suspicions.

    Maybe you can use this fact to encourage your husband to see a good psychiatrist, by reminding him that seing a good psychiatrist might confirm his suspicions instead of yours?

    Maybe you could find a way to say something like "if you don't have Asperger's, then go to a psychiatrist and prove it!" in a way your husband will listen to?

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  11. My counselor directed me to your blog and it is such a gift to me. I follow this blog faithfully because it gives me the encouragement I need to keep going.

    Sometimes the pain of living with someone so totally disconnected is enough to drive me to insanity - especially over the holidays. To know there are others who know exactly what I'm experiencing and the pain it causes is life giving. While Jesus Christ is my help, I am so thankful He gives us each other to encourage one another and help carry one another's burdens along the way.

    Please write soon - I check daily to hear a word from you. Your authenticity is refreshing. Thank you for pointing us to Christ!

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  12. We began seeing a marriage counselor a year ago as a last ditch effort to save our marriage. After about three months, he told us he suspected my husband had Asperger's Syndrome and referred us to a psychiatrist, who agreed. My husband has since sought out a third counselor who has decided he does NOT have Asperger's, but just "suppressed emotion and difficulty socializing". I should say that my husband is also genius level smart, a mechanical engineer, and obsessed with moving parts, taking things apart & putting them back together, etc. When I'm upset about anything, he has trouble identifying my emotions - he shuts down and goes into his own little world. He says he doesn't want to be "labeled", but let's face it - he doesn't want to be an Aspie. Now he won't talk about it or even acknowledge that he has symptoms. I feel lonely even when he's right beside me and I am so exhausted from having to do all the work to make our marriage work. I have no idea how to proceed.

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    1. Have you gotten a reply or taken any coarse of action from your situation she you posted this? I am I feel in a very similar situation and desperate for advice, my child is Asperger's too and the marriage breakdown hinders my "job" with my son and I feel I'm at the end of my rope without options. I would be grateful to hear what someone else may have done.

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    2. This is my problem as well. My husband has a PhD in astrophysics from Caltech, but dropped out of the field because he didn't want to have to talk to anybody. He has no friends and doesn't want any. He ignores his family, and won't even answer the phone when they call. But inside, he is so sweet and full of love. When I suggested that he might have Asperger's, he got angry and said that I was calling him names. I understand the horrible loneliness, as well. It seems like one thing that we all want from a marriage is someone who can really understand us. An Aspie doesn't seem to want to try.

      I cannot give you any clues about how to proceed, since i have the same problem. In fact, you have already done better than me, because you were able to get your husband to a marriage counselor and psychiatrist. Mine doesn't go to any doctor, except his dentist, and refuses to see a therapist. When I asked, he said, "I hate talking to people. Why would I want to go to a therapist. Torture!"

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  13. I can relate. Both of my teens (now becoming adults) have Asperger's and I highly suspect my ex-husband had Asperger's as well. I was married to him for 11 years and didn't understand why he was not contributing as a partner so divorced him 13 years ago. (He left for work one day and came home to tell me he joined the National Guard. I was home alone with the kids a lot and minded that I had to mother him too.) I highly suggest that when living with someone who has Asperger's to love them without expectation. For me that meant working on myself. I went to a counselor for three years and wrote in a journal every morning. I made absolutely certain that when I started my therapy, that I focused on me. For them, they are happy with who they are. It is everyone else who has the issue, and in a way this is true. You can't expect them to look at themselves if you are not willing to look at yourself with the same critical eye. Once you do, you may not feel the need to ask them to change. You may just love them for who they are and find a way to live with them. My kids give me joy. My ex-husband is a friend, and he has re-married to someone better suited for him. She flat out says "this is what I want you to do". That's that. She's strong and doesn't care what he thinks and they do quite well. There are no labels in either household. We are who we are. I actually was looking for a solution for my son when I found this blog. I came home from a meeting with his job coach. She can't get him to contribute to getting a job or focusing on his future. He barely talks and just sits there. I know he sees suggestions as bossing him around. This post just re-reminded me what I already knew. It's not easy, but if you see the great things in each day, it will eventually be worth it! :)

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  14. I am the wife, just barely, of over 20 years to an Aspie and I don't remember a time that I haven't wanted to leave. I just don't, to love someone to this expense defies all good sense but I still do it. There are no more friends, no support and massive depression. Does anyone ever overcome or even cope with the depression or is it always there? Please be honest, I just don't see a way out. Think about having an affair all of the time. I can't imagine this is all there is left for me. Knowing he is so dysfunctional yet needing his approval is so screwed up. How do they start out seemingly normal (apologies to all that take offense, don't as I have a child w/AS, love him so much) and demand with such arrogance your very life in exchange for their all consuming needs? How do I get rid of this resentment, this wish to just be dead. I think more about death than life, it seems impossible most days.

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  15. Hi I'm new to this site, my husband has all the signs of Aspergers but he thinks it me who's the problem. He's very critical, angry and honestly never has a positive word to say. He pushed a door in anger over missing an appointment as my little girl had a splinter in her foot and was scared to have it removed. He looses the plot over the smallest things and is a clean and order freak! I'm in it for the long haul but he refuses to entertain the idea of Aspergers so I've given him an ultimatum either get an assessment of please leave enough is enough. He's a good man, he's just so unhappy he says it's hell at home and hell at work. My little girl and I cope grand on our own but when he arrives all hell break loose. I could go on and on I'll stop now.

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  16. I know how you feel - our 15 yr son is in diagnostic process and my husband can't accept his son may be 'different' - truth is, my husband is an aspie if our son is.

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  17. I can relate to so much of this. As hard as it is, I find peace in knowing I'm not alone.

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  18. My ex boyfriend is a high functioning aspie. Highly successful at work, but all of his social and familial relationships are broken. His 30 year old daughter said to me, "I have no relationship with my father". And silly me, I thought inviting her over more often would help. As soon as she came over, he sat by himself at his desk to pay his bills. Ridiculous. The aspie trait of mind blindness, thinking they are right, and not seeing your point of view, and not empathizing with your emotions can kill an intimate relationship. I think it's critical that the aspie understand that he is NOT always right, and that sometimes he has to adjust. My aspie was divorced, his ex wife constantly called, texted, sent out christmas cards with his name on it, it went on and on. It upset me greatly. He didn't have emotions for her and said it didn't matter that I was making something out of nothing. But it DID MATTER to me. It needed to stop. If they were divorced, they should act divorced. He was mind blind and couldn't grasp my point of view. After asking nicely, and then yelling, demanding, getting unbelievably angry, I had to leave. If he sticks his head in the sand and doesn't want to learn that he's not perfect, then have it at, I'm outta here.

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  19. Gosh, all those comments make me feel very pessimistic.

    My husband knows he has Asperger's/HFA. Both of his parents, both his brother's and both of our children have it too.

    That's my life. I am NT.

    He accepts he has ASD but will not attribute any of his actions, feelings or behaviours to it!!!!!!! He says everything is me. If I point out something he is doing that is upsetting to me, he says it's my fault/I'm making it up/I have misunderstood/I'm blaming him! As most of you have said, it's actually making me ill, I have severe depression and cannot get better with him around. I love him with all my battered heart but this relationship is killing me.

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