My Neurodiverse Marriage -1. I’m married to a man with autism. Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder typically diagnosed during childhood. (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder also known as Asperger’s. Asperger’s was renamed by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, often known as the “DSM,” a reference book on mental health and brain-related conditions and disorders.
My Neurodiverse Marriage -1
I still use the term Asperger’s to describe high functioning autism. Asperger husbands are also fondly referred to as “Aspie’s.” My asperger husband and I have been married for 25 years. In my neurdiverse marriage, we utilize the systems and tools I use in my private practice. I’ve been working with couples, married and not married, for over 25 years. I have come to realize that over one third of those couples may have been neurodiverse relationships. There is specific training involved when working with neurodiverse couples so traditional marriage counseling isn’t effective and can even be detrimental for moving forward.
As a certified neurodiverse couples counselor, I work with couples through a neurological lens, as neurology matters. In the beginning of our marriage his behavior frustrated and confused me. I know now what I didn’t know then….my husband has Asperger’s.
My husband and I have our good days and bad days. I have come to realize that the bad days come about because my husband doesn’t have time or doesn’t make the time to recharge. His ability to be present with me is limited, if not absent. Because my personal issue is not feeling validated I feel ignored when he isn’t paying attention to me when I’m talking to him. I can become reactive by acting out in hurtful and sometimes abusive ways toward him rather than be responsive and just share my feelings of being sad, hurt, and disappointed.
I’ve learned to manage my triggers in my neurodiverse marriage by taking a pause and understand the trigger is from my past and that my husband isn’t ignoring me on purpose. But, boy, does it feel like he is at the moment. I put a system in place to manage my Cassandra symptoms. When I am happy and my relationship is happy. Happy Me Happy We is a book I wrote that helps with understanding the individual needs to be whole for any relationship to solid. That, with the addition of breath work, meditation, and being in the presence moment helps me stay responsive rather than reactive. My relationship with my husband went from good enough to amazing.
Yours can too. For more information about getting what you need in your neurodiverse marriage please contact me at CouplesCounselorSanDiego.com or call me at (858) 735-1139