Psychopathy… Or Asperger’s Syndrome?

Psychopathy… Or Asperger’s Syndrome?

“Talking with my ex-husband is like smashing my head against a wall or drowning in a river. We were not speaking the same language and misunderstandings were the rule. I learned the hard way what Asperger Syndrome was.”

~ Anonymous


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Psychopathy… Or Asperger’s Syndrome?


Quotes from Partners of People with Aspergers Syndrome

“Do not minimize the extent of my having been changed from a vivacious, sensual, happy, loving, athletic, healthy, wealthy, bright, articulate, fairly socially adept human to being melded and molded to accommodate an autistic adult into exactly the opposite of who I am for the sake of a one-sided relationship.”

“We struggle every day with this apparent arrogance they portray and our own sense of powerlessness to influence them to consider our perspective, comment or suggestion as valid or acceptable, and so we become silent. Or eventually leave. No other option seems available to us.

What is even more horrifying and disabling for us is the requirement on our part to patiently endure being corrected, directed, criticized and often rudely spoken to regularly by our AS partners, sometimes constantly, as they work on forming us into more complete and tolerable partners for themselves, while we weather the torpedo blasts of rage and reaction they direct towards us if we suggest an imperfection in them.

Survivable? I think not.”

“Sitting in the kitchen in the evening, Harry was verbally cruel. At that time I knew all about the Asperger’s arrogance and uncontrollable urge to belittle anyone who didn’t have his special knowledge and didn’t share his opinions. It was exposed to me almost every day and I had trained myself not to pay attention because it was too stressful for me. But this time he was unusually verbally cruel. He did not respond to my requests to stop, but increased the cruel verbal abuses. I was exhausted and despaired…

Smash. He struck me violently. I lay on the kitchen floor and bled. He kept beating me hard. At every stroke he shouted furiously: ‘I’ve never hit you, I’ve never hit you, I’ve never hit you.’ I was terrified. He went on and on; I couldn’t move. He did not stop beating me, until I begged: ‘It is my fault, pleeease forgive me.’ I called our friend; the only person who knew the truth. I was stunned how he spoke with such control and so friendly on the phone as if nothing had happened. … He never apologized after the violent abuse. He never expressed any remorse.”

“I have lived with an AS spouse for 14 years. It has been a long, lonely and frustrating life. Walking on eggshells is the ‘norm’ for living. Enduring repetitive verbal abuse and witnessing adult tantrums has become a routine event. AS individuals learn coping behaviors that allow them to ‘act’ their way through social situations and personal intimacy, but that they don’t actually invest any feelings or emotions in them. It is simply an action that is expected of them. A social convention. A NT spouse feels empty, unheard and frustrated. Life is short. Find a healthy and well functioning partner or live with a dog. Life will be far more rewarding.”

“I dated someone who had Asperger’s syndrome and it led to me having a breakdown and suffering from severe depression. He denies to this day that he has done anything wrong… He is a high-achieving professional but lacked the capacity to understanding that his actions and words were deeply damaging. If someone told me they had Asperger’s now, I would run in the opposite direction.”

“He barely notices I am gone, is healthy and still calls me his wife, even though I am no longer. He calls to ask me to do his laundry and never once said he missed me. He is on a robotic myopic mission he calls life. Nothing has changed really. I, however, have lost all my friends and social support, have chronic illness and a nervous disorder and may well lose my house because of the financial ineptness of the person who was supposed to be my partner in a relationship. The deprivation of basic human needs was NEVER on the table for the AS person, as the NT does the bulk of the basics in the home and oft times at work as well, and almost certainly with the children. Yet the NT person could be on the floor dying or in labour and the AS individual would walk over them to get to get to the computer. Where were my human rights in that marriage? We are the housekeepers, house maintenance, child rearers and unpaid caregivers and Mental Health workers in the home. Notice how I did not say ‘wife’ as that would mean there was a family, sharing dynamic involved, but the wife aspect was ink on a registration form for most of us.”

“I have been married for 5 years to an aspie. Five years of his aggression, lack of affection, constant criticism, put-downs, failure to even attempt to make the marriage work, even though I have begged him to come and see someone together. I realized the marriage I had worked so hard on, was over. I cannot get him to move out—he just keeps coming up with excuses why he can’t. He doesn’t care that I’m unhappy, isolated, unloved. He just cares about himself. End of it. Life with an aspie hubby is unbearable. I just hope I can hold out long enough not to top myself before he moves out. I had a life once.”

“I lost my hair, I lost my home, my friends, family, health, career… Watching my kids cope with a man who never considers anyone but himself. For 15 years I have been mother and father. My kids cannot communicate with their father. The older they get the problems become worse.I would have stayed and worked it out, so I thought, but by the end of the last two years and suffering a nervous breakdown I could not do it. I wanted to chose my life. Why is it our duty to stay and be serially abused?”

“Last night, I sat on the edge of my bed and cried. I felt like I was crazy. It is so hard to describe what it feels like to be married to this. I told myself yesterday that if I could make myself more like him, then maybe it would be better. If I could remove all emotional desire from myself, then I would be able to do this. I actually asked God to make me like Spock. That has to be one of the weirder prayers that has gone before the throne of God. Like some weird psalm.

“Oh Lord, make me like Spock. Purge me of emotion. Oh my soul, shut the hell up so that only my brain will speak and my heart will sleep a thousand years.”

Poetic but not possible. I found a better thing to ask. I asked for a sense of being accepted and validated by someone. I felt so misunderstood. Like not one person understood the exact nature of what I was experiencing, and this was so isolating. This sense of isolation is intolerable to me.”

“Recently I heard a sermon on loving your enemies. The pastor said that sometimes our enemies are in our own families. That seems a strong word to apply to a spouse, but sometimes a lack of empathy, no matter what the cause, can honestly make you feel as if you are with an enemy rather than a friend! When illness strikes and say, for example, my spouse comes home to find me coughing, congested and moving slowly due to aches and pains, I expect an empathic response. My toddler hears me cough and says ‘You okay, Mommy? You okay?’ But my aspie spouse may not even think to ask ‘How are you feeling?’ once throughout my illness. This can be extremely depressing and upsetting. I try to remember that it just doesn’t come naturally for an aspie to have the typical empathic response. But when I am sick or weak and am not offered any help or emotional support I tend to be filled with grief, anger and self-pity at how lonely and uncared for I feel.”

“I have been here for 27 years. I’m also disabled so I’m dependent upon my as partner. It’s frightening, lonely and soul destroying. Others outside the relationship not only disbelieve me but see my partner being an angel of mercy for caring for me. My soul feels trapped in an airless coffin. I dread every single day.”

“It’s always ME. Its always MY FAULT. I don’t ‘get him’ why don’t I just do it ‘his way’ why don’t I just make everything easier for him by doing what he wants and acting like a void all the time? Learn to speak ‘aspie’ aka: no relative human emotions. No insight, no foresight, no thought, no consideration, no love, no respect. JUST SPEAK ROBOT. YEAH. NOT HAPPENING. So, I am MISERABLY STUCK IN THIS FOR ALMOST 5 YEARS NOW. Honestly I wish he would just disappear and never return. There’s no hope. If I didn’t have a child, I would have left him a long time ago. He prances around with out a care in the world. ignoring my sadness, ignoring my anger and my feelings, because why? Because HE HAS NONE. The only emotion he feels is anger. WHERE IS MY TIME MACHINE? WHERE?”

“He lacked empathy, and he didn’t understand why I expected him to be able to anticipate needs or intuit things. As an example, when I was pregnant with our first daughter, I was put on bed rest for the last few weeks of my pregnancy due to an inability to walk from pelvic instability. I had no friends where we lived as I hadn’t lived there very long. I was, therefore, unable to go to the kitchen and prepare food. I would have to sort of slither up the hall on my side to make it to the bathroom. I literally could not walk or stand. I was famished when he would get home. He was never able to remember that I was home and unable to meet my needs. One evening, he came home with food and ate in front of me. He didn’t ask how I was, talk to me, or even engage. He just sat there, glazed over, and ate his food while playing computer games. He rarely greeted me. I was so frustrated and angry. He looked at me with wide-eyed innocence and asked, ‘What’s wrong with you?’ Pregnant wife on bed rest unable to walk? He just didn’t get it or understand why that had anything to do with him or why he had any responsibility there. It bewildered him. That is, however, a typical interaction. It has played out over and over again in different contexts over the years.”

“My husband has Asperger’s, as did his father and uncle. It is stressful and I am exhausted. The groups I’ve tried to join basically say the same thing: Be positive,accept him, it’s not his fault. I’m not a good wife for not ‘enduring.’ I understand that. I really do-but I am losing it. It’s been 15 years and I am EXHAUSTED.”

“The aspie may not be able to help that he only sees things from his own perspective, due to his brain wiring. This means, in my situation, that he will believe I am always wrong anytime we disagree. I can expect him to believe I am always wrong. I can accept that it is pointless to try and share my perspective or ever reach mutual understanding.”

“There is zero desire to hear the other person’s perspective (of course). There is no compassion or empathy for the struggles the other person is going through. There is an air of superiority, and there are many demands to have his own way. And it’s all making me sick.”

“Being with someone with Aspergers is the most exasperating experience. In the end you’ll feel like you’re going mad. But they are wired differently, so it’s not their fault. But being on the receiving end feels nothing short of abuse and bullying, even though my ex always said he was the bullied one.”

“What do we do about aspie men? Do we just name and shame them on a website so other women can avoid? And what about the issue of being a man enough to confess you are an aspie, on the first or second date? Shouldn’t that be mandatory? This is a psych condition that badly hurts women like me, after all. I think we have a right to know.”

“If the Asperger traits intensify over time and decades (and most of us partners have experienced that it will) then all that is left for the NT to experience is sadness, loneliness and infinite sorrow and grief.”

“Don’t let these people try to make you feel worse than you already do. You people have no idea what it feels like to be on the receiving end of your so called “love”. You have no idea how hurtful it is to be married, or in a relationship, with someone like YOU! Yeah, get it tattooed on your forehead or whatever, I don’t care what you do, just stick with your own kind and stop destroying people!!! Difference is, I won’t be a victim, nor will I be broken down, life’s too short to deal with assholes, no matter what their hangup is… Just because you clueless dumbasses don’t mean to hurt someone, doesn’t mean that you don’t. If I ran over someone with my car accidentally and killed them, they’re still dead, right? Same thing. If you’re pissed about what this blogger has written, then don’t read it… go back to tracking weather statistics … stick with your own kind is all I’m saying.”

“Aspergers men are a nightmare. I accidentally married someone with AS. And I stress ACCIDENTALLY, as I have seen the devastation that is “being” with one of these people. They should come with a warning and anyone displaying these behaviors should be tested in school so that us normal people don’t get trapped in something that ruins our lives. Yeah they’re all different yeah yeah, I know, some are worse than others. No one can be happy with these people. NO ONE. WHATSOEVER. Seriously. My life is devastated from one of these un-empathetic, desolate wasteland-of-emotions people. Learn to think like them? F*** that. That’s impossible and would require losing most of the characteristics that make us human, that allow us to connect to others.”

“Thank f**king God. For some time I’d honestly thought I was going insane. The issue with aspies is that what they’re doing is by any objective and subjective definition, abusive.”

“We are isolated, no one validates us, we lose friends and family, and we feel like ‘hostages’ in our own homes.”

“Yesterday, my aspie spouse started yelling at me in the car. What started the argument was, of course, my fault. Because I’m a total idiot. Mainly, because I have feelings. And (cardinal sin that it is), I tried to share said feelings. So stupid of me! Will I never learn? Obviously not… “

“Days, weeks, months, go by where you go into hiding. Staying away, staying silent, refusing to engage in any conversation that may possibly divulge a remnant of feeling, brought some semblance of peace. But that won’t last. It cannot possibly last. Because you have a neurologically typical brain, heart, soul. And he doesn’t. In a moment of . . . What was it this time? Intense feeling? A desire to share? Forgetfulness? Foolishness? Mere stupidity on your part? Whatever the cause, you did it yet again. You shared something of yourself. And the result was utter destruction. Sheer madness. Wondering again ‘What the hell just happened here?’ Oh, yeah. Now I remember. Back into the hole I go. I choose peace.”

“I have been with my husband for 26 yrs. Raised two boys, ran the household, have taken on all the financial responsibilities of home loans car loans, everything. I home schooled my boys and have been severely emotionally and verbally abused by my husband who has both adhd and aspergers. He’s selfish, rude, he throws tantrums like a four year old to get his way, he’s deceitful, and manipulative to make sure he gets his way, he takes forever to get his task done and he ignores me and never talks to me. He’s only nice when he’s trying to get what he wants (sex), and when he doesn’t get his way, he gets loud and he says horrible things about me, with no understanding of really what he just said, he’s never sorry because he’s never to blame, and I feel like I’m raising a third child that will never grow up, and … I been dealing with this for a very long time and I am worn out, sad, lonely, a little bitter, and I feel I’m losing my self through all of this and I just don’t have any strength left to fight, and he denies that anything is wrong and won’t seek help. I’m sorry that he has this, but it doesn’t give anyone the right to severely abuse their partner because of it. Help!”

“I am married to a man who has diagnosed Aspergers and is extremely difficult to live with… The most difficult thing I’ve had to endure is married life with someone who only worries only about himself and doesn’t even really know me or his children. I am by far the main care giver and feel I have raised the kids on my own.”

“Now I realize that there must be many many exhausted, isolated, deeply sad women out there trying to cope with a very difficult situation alone, because so few understand. My husband is a beautiful, gentle, intelligent individual but this does not prevent my suffering. Denying one’s self and sacrificing all basic emotional needs every single day, giving up the most important personal desires bit by bit as the years go by is so damaging. I wish support was better organised for partners of Asperger’s… It is enough to make one crazy and there is no help around.”

 “No passion ever. Rigid sex. You become a human safety net for the Aspie partner. Doing everything, alone. If I had any idea then what I know now, I would not be in what feels like a trap with a spouse who is kind, gentle, and intelligent but has never once told our four children he loves them without a prompt or reminder from me to do it. I had to ‘train’ my spouse to reply to me when I tell him I love him. It’s very stressful and lonely.

“Being married to someone with AS is so lonely. I feel that all my time is spent on how I can make things better for my husband to cope with life. Yet I am the one that has to handle everything and there is never someone there to help me. For a long time I pushed aside my friends when it came to social outings since my husband always seemed so awkward at these events. I have started going to things by myself which may sound rude but at least I feel alive! To have another adult to talk to is worth more than anything.”

“After 23 years of marriage to an AS husband who is a good provider and basically decent person, all I can say is “DON’T DO IT. Run, run, run as fast as you can. You may love this person, but unless you also despise yourself, you need to leave the relationship as far behind you as possible.”

“My husband was diagnosed with Asperger’s a little over a year ago. We have been married almost 37 years and the stress and sacrifice of dealing 24/7 with a man/child has cost me my health, my job, college, and my sanity. While dating, I thought he was just quirky and shy. He made me believe we were on the same page about the future. After marriage, he lost interest in sex after three or four weeks and made it clear he did not want children. I always loved to travel but he refused to go anywhere. In my area, a wife just did not travel without her husband, and if she did the gossip was terrible. After moving to our current home 30 years ago, he refused to move to another state, city or house. Now I am disabled in a non-accessible house and my life is a living hell. An outsider looking in would see a man who is very smart, emotionally flat and likes to tell funny stories. Most people like him. The outsider would probably feel sorry for him for having a fat, handicapped, angry and terrified wife and have no idea that when she married him she was pretty, healthy, fit, smart and people often commented on her beautiful smile. He took all of these things from me. I did not realize what was happening to me because I loved him. It was like a slow leak that you don’t recognize until it is too late. If you are willing to give up your every hope, dream, and ambition for someone who is unable or unwilling to be a partner in your marriage and does not appreciate you or your sacrifice, then a life with an Aspie spouse is for you. If I had known what I was getting into, I would never have gone on the first date. You also need to consider this–what if YOU become seriously ill and need to lean on him? It’s like leaning on a five-year-old child who has equal control of your finances. My home is a bio-hazard because I am no longer physically able to clean, he is unwilling to clean and refuses to allow me to hire someone to help. If you are considering marriage with an Asburger’s person, my recommendation, after having lived it for these many years, is to RUN IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION! Marriage is hard enough without having one of the partners emotionally stunted and having no common sense.”

“Think carefully is my advice after 28 lonely years battling with something so subtly pervasive often visible only to me and the children. While being able to maintain a facade of normality in the work force, my husband comes home overloaded.He tries to be sociable but ends up taking insult from the most harmless conversation which then escalates into an argument which results in him becoming angry,accusing me of blaming him for something I didn’t even think, then comes the verbal abuse and ranting during which he seems quite confused and delusional ending in him crying and shutting himself off in the spare room.Thank god our sons are grown and seldom home.I feel like my life is over!”

“It has been a long lonely road bringing up the kids basically on my own, watching them hurt and confused by his lack of genuine interest in their lives.Being isolated and anxious because he functions well outside and sees helping people as part of his job. When at home he is either overly affectionate or a “cold fish” and seems resentful if family need his help. After many years I have succumbed to depression and ill health,feeling worn down by the constant demands to behave in a certain way to make things run smoothly at home the expense of my own health and happiness.As he has gotten older he is more controlling (he has a position of authority at work within the community)and yet is completely different at home, rarely shows compassion for us while claiming we are the center of his world.When we are alone he will often find fault in what I say resulting in outbursts of temper which escalates into verbal ranting lasting for hours .when we are in company(including our sons) he is the model attentive husband I feel more like a possession than a loved one.He says he loves me but it,s an unhealthy love which is all about his needs.It almost feels as if the novelty of having a wife wore off after he got promotion at work and didn’t need my support anymore. God why am I still doing this!”

“I fell in love with, and married this handsome, gentle, hardworking man. 6 years of trying to understand why he was so peculiar, I decided I had to get away from him. Then I broke my leg in a parachute accident which scuppered my bid for freedom. It was my mum who mentioned AS so I started researching it and (light bulb moment) all the odd behavior started making sense. I didn’t leave him, we’ve been married for 13 years now. I felt guilty because I now knew it wasn’t his fault. I would have felt like I’d left a child in the middle of a road. I regret my decision to stay with him. I regret ever having met him. I am at the end of my tether. He has taken everything I have to give. He will not acknowledge that he has problems…. it’s me that’s not normal. I am lonely, worn out, and emotionally drained…”

“I am the wife of a man recently diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS). I was reaching out for support and information for myself when I came upon a description of Affective Deprivation Disorder (AfDD). When I saw those words my heart leapt – resonance – someone has put a name to what I have been feeling for many years. It feels like I have no more reserves for tolerating a lack of resonance, understanding, and empathetic validation. I feel depleted and cannot tolerate sharing my feelings and having them unacknowledged or invalidated. I have become COMPLETELY DEPLETED (CD). In this CD state I have been reaching out for help, information and empathetic validation. I went to my therapist after a week of emotional devastation over my husband’s diagnosis – I shared how I saw the situation as hopeless. She responded, ‘I disagree.’ For the record, it feels like a hopeless diagnosis FOR ME god damn it! And YES I am suffering from AfDD – and I don’t give a F**K who doesn’t agree. You see, now I’m not reaching out for anymore god dammed help. AfDD can lead to depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, apathy, isolation and feelings of exhaustion and emptiness. It occurs when one’s feelings are un-reciprocated and/or invalidated over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. Gee, I’m feeling a little better. Thank you Me, for understanding and validating my feelings! Many wives of AS husbands (we are also known as NT’s, i.e. neurotypicals, normal people married to people with AS). You see, we’re nothing special, just typical people married to “special” people who do not return our warmth, expressed feelings of love and encouragement. In return for loving deeply and completely from the bottom of our hearts, we receive… nothing at all – or perhaps some good old fashioned invalidation from our therapists (the people we f**king PAY for a little empathetic validation). I say to those of you who are also suffering from AfDD, your feelings are valid, reasonable, and completely understandable! You matter. Your feelings matter. You deserve love, warmth, and empathetic validation. Your lives are not “typical,” they are tragic, and your efforts to persevere, one day at a time, are nothing short of heroic. I have lived my life on crumbs. But, at present, I am starving and unable to sustain myself on crumbs. Sorry! So now, I say to you and to MYSELF – find a therapist who offers EMPATHY. Pay them to feed you empathetic validation. If they blow it – FIRE their asses. If you can’t find ANYONE and/or can’t AFFORD a therapist who can and will provide this, well I guess you’re going to have to provide it to yourself! By definition empathy comes from an “other” so this is impossible. But let’s give it a shot, shall we?”

“My husband has Asperger’s Syndrome. For me it often feels very much like adopting a special needs child. According to my husband, for him it seems like taking on a bushel of trouble to no purpose. We do love each other and don’t plan to end the marriage. However, I have exhausted us over the years through frantic activity that veiled my frustration and horror in the realization that my husband cannot love me the way I need/want/deserve/expect… I don’t even know which of my above attitudes about love are really true any more. I feel a gigantic ‘cloudy’ kind of love from my husband but it lacks any focus or momentum and I can’t really understand how to relate to this love (and to him) other than to sort of bask in it. Meanwhile I feel like I’m living for two – exhausted all the time. Traditional marriage and careers have emphasized our differences to the point that we move in almost different spheres; any NT partner who works as hard as required to keep engagement in a marriage knows that this is a serious problem – it’s hard on any marriage. We are going to change our lifestyle. It’s not working. You can see that maintaining my marriage has become a primary activity of my life. I have mixed feelings about it.”

“I just found out that my husband has Asperger’s. It certainly clarifies things for me. I have been married for 7 years and have contemplated divorce many times and am at the end of my rope. We are in counseling again as a last effort to save this marriage and I am also seeing a therapist by myself for support and guidance in dealing with this so I am a very understanding wife. I believe in the vows I took and that marriage is forever, but this disorder is taking a toll on not only on the marriage, but my self worth, too and I am so tired of feeling unhappy and being alone despite the fact that I am married. I always knew that something wasn’t quite right with my husband. For the most part, I do all the chores and take all of the responsibility in the marriage. I make all of the plans and all of the decision. My husband works and grocery shops, but he only grocery shops because he likes doing it, so if he doesn’t like doing something, he doesn’t. Even though I now know why my husband behaves the way that he does, it doesn’t really change the fact that the relationship is challenging and exhausting. A relationship is supposed to be a partnership and my marriage is not that at all. I feel like we are roommates. Although my husband is basically a sweet and nice guy, it’s all about him and his needs and wants. Nothing is ever about me. I am the giver all of the time and it’s very hard doing all of the giving and not getting my needs met and because I cannot connect to him, I feel lonely and isolated. He never, ever gets how I feel and my feelings are seen by him as complaints and are always dismissed. We rarely have sex or talk unless he has something to say. His behavior can be crazy-making at times and he never takes accountability for his actions so he never apologizes or sees the world through any one else’s eyes but his and since he can’t communicate in a constructive way, talking to him is often pointless and most conversations result in him telling me to shut up and being called names. He has also been physically abusive and can’t keep friends nor does he have a good relationship with his parents or siblings.”

“I‘m 12 months out from a 9 month marriage to a man diagnosed with AS (diagnosed after our marriage). He changed literally overnight, the warm emotions that he was so good at role playing disappeared once he had the ring on my finger and a housewife to look after him. I’m still recovering from the emotional trauma and physical effects that almost have killed me. My advice, if you’re dating a man with AS: run, don’t walk, don’t look back, just get out NOW.”

“My husband of 9 years has been recently told he has a mild form of Asperger’s… I blamed myself for everything – every blow up, every sigh he generates, every look of disgust, the fact we are not sexual or even affectionate. I now know NOT to blame myself but I do not know how to start taking care of me. I get advice from some people who know that say leave, and my own parents think I am not patient enough. This is my second marriage. We would be great friends and I have suggested that to him. HE wants to stay (why not, it is easy for him – all his needs are being met). Rambling and frustrated and on the verge it seems. Not that tears will bring him any closer. It pushes him away. I want that strong woman back that I used to be and need help finding her.”

“Although I know it’s not his fault it is still hard to deal with the lack of emotional support and belonging. The isolation that becomes part of the lifestyle is too much after 20 years. I just want a normal conversation for 20 minutes without a debate and when there is a problem someone to stay and work it out. I’m at the end of my rope. I gave it my all and tried to cope but I can’t do it any longer or I will lose what I have left of who I am.”

“After a very difficult 21 years of marriage I recently realized my husband fits the AS profile only because my son was evaluated. This realization was truly eye-openning and validating as I have experienced utter despair over years of coercion, manipulation, and other forms of emotional abuse by my husband, as well as years of intense loneliness. The fact he doesn’t get it makes it all the more head-bangingly frustrating. I am now in therapy. I just started taking anxiety medication and I am suffering health affects including PTSD after years of enduring such a marriage. Finally, I am realizing I am not going crazy, I am not making up or doubting my experience.”

“I am heartbroken, angry, confused and terrified. I have recently been considering some kind of online affair type thing to try and get some of my needs met because I am DYING inside. *deep sigh* Its just CRUSHING to be trapped in this situation. Girls considering marrying an Aspie, you are kidding yourself. They cannot love you, they can *act* NT for short periods of time but that’s it. Run far and fast. Seriously.”

“I am SO Sick and Tired of hearing ‘They can’t help it. They are unaware of it. They are wired different. Have more understanding. Imagine what it is like to be him…’ Oh, Ok let’s talk about that one.. let me Imagine what it is like to be him… Well, everything is done for me. I can complain and moan until she does it exactly like I want it and then I will still find fault. I get to go everywhere I want to go and do everything I want to do. I get to have sex and get mine without having to show any love or passion. I get to talk about everything I want to and ignore and watch TV when she speaks. I get to tell her I think she is fat, her food is bland, her ideas suck, she is lazy. EVERY conversation revolves around me. I get to talk for hours about stuff that is sooo dry and stupid. If she asks me how was my day I will tell her what tool I used… how big the part was…if I turned it clockwise or counter clockwise… every word that was said… who worked with me… how long they took for lunch… what their wife is doing… what they had on… What THE HELL! It is like the Insanity plea… If a man with a low IQ stabs you 97 times he could be deemed CRAZY. If another man stabs you 97 times because he is just evil and wants your car and purse… what does it matter!!! You are STILL DEAD!… I am sinking and I am the one in need of alot of help… so Imagine what it is Like FOR ME for a change!”

“I am on the seventh year of marriage to a very successful professional man of 50 who has been formally diagnosed for a year and we’ve known for about the last three when ‘the penny dropped’ for me because I’d worked with AS students in the past. The last five years have been a descent into hell. I have lost a highly successful career because of the combination of confusion/emotional vacuum/and his obsession with work (he also works 150 miles away and commutes). I used to have a wide bunch of friends but he saw them off through rudeness/thinking he was much more important or making it difficult for me to see them. Two bouts of clinical depression. A ‘cry for help’ suicide attempt. Social isolation. I used to be in a caring profession and now I feel that I have no one to care about except this ‘brick’ who I can tell is faking what he thinks affection is and then flying into rages and violence when his fakery doesn’t work. No ‘conversation’ is possible. I get interrupted, reminded of my nervous breakdown and actually told what I’m thinking. If you live with an AS husband you have to give up the whole concept of a shared, reciprocal journey of a marriage. I have asked him to get help and he won’t.”

“I work as a counselor and have a degree in psychology but have missed some obvious and terribly painful and isolating patterns. The things that attracted me to my partner of 23 years were his high intelligence and his childlike way of seeing things. He teachers IT and has two masters degrees. The behaviors have slowly worn me down all seem to have to do with his inability to read or express care or emotional warmth. He has often stood away from me and lectured me, become angry or ignored me. When someone with reasonable emotional intelligence would respond differently. I am leaving the relationship. It has taken me two years to leave and try to shed the guilt I feel in not being loyal to my own values. It will sound dramatic, but those of you in the same position will understand, if I stay I may as well be in prison. I too get tired of all those people saying how interesting, gifted, talented, and special people with aspergers are. I’m sure they are in many situations. However, it simply does not work if you want an intimate and warm relationship. I respect other women out there who have laid it on the line, you have given me courage and empathy. And perhaps have saved my sanity.”

“If you are in a relationship with an Asperger man, give up all hope of a normal loving relationship, and run away if at all possible. There is nothing you can do to inspire him to actually care about you, so don’t waste your time. I screwed up 6 years of my life hoping for and desperately working towards the impossible. Don’t be a fool.”

“I went out with one for two years. He went obsessively interested in me. I was his special interest for about a year then it wore off…and the confusion set in. The facade was gone and the selfish, self-obsessed and unfeeling Aspie emerged. TOTAL EMOTIONAL DISCONNECT. Very very upsetting. Sought counselling for myself.He was perfect of course so didn’t need to be involved in that. His behaviour bordered on the sociopathic. I have been sensitised to their ‘traits’ and can now spot one within minutes of talking to them. Run. Run as far as you can and don’t look back.”

“They can’t own any part of their behavior and what it might FEEL like to receive it (i.e., they cannot empathize). It’s a trap because they will never understand or validate your concern about the relationship itself. You just have to get out if it is that bad.”

“My husband has Aspergers (I did not know when I married him). He is emotionally disconnected and when angry, which is every day, breaks things, destroys things, is quite cruel, threatens to kill me and my kids as well as himself. I would suggest that there may be some people with Aspergers who are of the passive type, and who may be easier to deal with, but my husband is not. It is hard to divorce someone who will most likely try to murder you and your children if you do so. People of the passive type with Asperger’s should not be so judgmental, as it shows that they and their cohorts lack any empathy for those of us who are essentially prisoners.”

“My husband has aspergers and has no social skills, no parenting skills….threatens me, intimidates me…is emotionally disconnected from the kids and has no empathy for anyone. The whole world revolves around HIM…he is only interested in things that affect him and thats it…yes he would kill me or kill us all if i left him. I ask God to forgive me for wishing bad things on him everyday…but my life is hell. He was not like this when we were ‘dating’, nice and normal as pie…after the wedding, i got pregnant and the HELL began. I am his carer and his ‘mother’, do everything for him and its not enough for the wretch…The only good thing to come out of this nightmare were my 2 sons, other than that…zilch. He has no friends and has anger issues, i dont know how much more i can take…I feel like I’m having a nervous break down! No-one deserves this BS.”

“They cannot help themselves and even if they could most won’t ever admit to having anything wrong. It is always the fault of the NT spouse. I was in a foreign country and needed emergency surgery and spent a week in the hospital. My husband didn’t come. He is clueless. No emotion. No empathy. No understanding ever about how anything else feels. Only how he feels. Always the victim. Always the martyr. Buys his friends. Loves being the center of attention or is completely withdrawn. Has fits and rages. Then never remembers the awful things he said and wonders why I was upset. The verbal and emotional abuse. I hope any NT spouses out there will have the strength and courage to find happiness in your life. Stay strong and don’t give up or give in to a life iof misery. The hardest thing is dealing with others who never see the brunt of what you are going through. Most will never understand.”

“We’d been dating a few months and were having dinner when he found out I attended public school during grades one through twelve. He exclaimed, “You don’t even have an education!” Meanwhile, this guy who considered himself so highly educated couldn’t install a curtain rod or connect a DVD player; when he became intensely frustrated because he got a picture but no sound, I went and had a look and found two cables clearly marked “audio” that weren’t connected. I pointed it out and he insisted they weren’t necessary. When I plugged them in and it worked, he got angry at me and left the room. He had told me that his mother, who was a nurse, worked overtime continuously on night shifts to pay for his private school education. When she asked him to visit her for Thanksgiving, he told me he wasn’t going because she was ‘just an old lady’ and he had ‘nothing in common’ with her.”


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