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DH and possibly aspergers(14 Posts)
I've thought for a while that DH might be on the spectrum but consolidated some of my thoughts last night and looked up some websites on aspergers. Could anyone who knows it well help me decipher whether these are probable aspergers signs or just normal man signs:
- DH finds social interaction - even with his own friends, very difficult. If anyone comes to our house, after the compulsory part of the hosting (eg a meal or a drink) is over, DH can be found upstairs in bed in the dark, or on his computer, sometimes after just half an hour.
- he is very sensory and finds strong smells and sensations impossible to deal with. On winter nights he will insist on having a window wide open to get rid of a smell that I cannot even detect. He visibly reacts when we are out and there is a perfume smell or the smell of dog poo. When DH and I have sex he is obsessed with the way I feel and smell. He wants my body to be soft and if it isn't soft he finds it hard to touch and that often gets in the way of our sexual experience together. He, also, is hyper sensitive to me touching him. If I touch him lightly he will shout "that hurts!" And quite frequently exclaims "ouch, owww" while we have sex, even though my touch is extremely light.
- he is very proficient in maths and gets obsessed by things - boring, abstract things. Probabilities, percentages. He is fascinated by probabilities and outcomes and plays a lot of poker (I have posted about this before.) he also has other obsessions - the prices of things. He monitors them, how they go up, how they go down. Then reads hundreds of articles on why and will happily reel off these facts to people who are visibly bored with the dryness of what he is saying.
- more on sex: DH is mechanical in sex and insists always on "starting at the beginning" if he gets disturbed (by a touch or smell or visual) in the middle. He turns the lights off to have sex and doesn't want to see very much (only an outline). It's like he is reading from an instruction manual. "Ok you do this, you go there, then I go here..." Sometimes when we get into it, it is very nice, but the circumstances and environment for him have to be optimal in terms of his senses (which they aren't always).
- at work he is very admired for his technical ability and good at what he does but he has been given someone to "deal with him/mentor him" because they do not believe that he is "democratic enough." DH is not offended by this and is happy to let his mentor (who I have met) correct him on what to say to who, and resolve the disputes that DH gets into at work over something he has said.
- socially DH can occasionally say some off color things. He will comment on people's ethnicity as a conversation opener. Not judgementally, but purely as an observation. He does not ask other people questions about themselves, but can be sensitive to other people's feelings when he is told about the feelings in the form of a "story."
There are other things I am sure but I can't remember.
What do you think?
As an aspie myself who has read a great deal of the literature, I'd say he sounds like he's on the spectrum.
I'm quite impressed by his workplaces response to the issue, actually.
Yes I would say there is a very strong likelihood. You can find the AQ and EQ online, these measures will give you an idea. If he wants an official dx he should see his GP but it can be very difficult for an adult to get an assessment.
How do you put up with sex like that though? It sounds like such hard work!
Yes, he sounds very much like my dad who has just been diagnosed. I am an aspie too, but fit more of a female profile
Thank you for the replies that has really helped and it has helped for me to get the examples out on the page.
Sex yes is frustrating and not at all like sex I have had with other people before I married DH. There is not a huge amount of intimacy, he will not really look me in the eye or kiss me very much, it is like he is a surgeon performing a task on a body. He is gentle, of course, and wants me to enjoy it, but actually to enjoy it I need to feel like he is not the surgeon about to perform his operation!
In huge contrast he is very cuddly and emotionally intimate with me. He tells me everything he thinks and shares a lot (some of it is a bit hard to swallow sometimes!) That's how we got to know each other (we didn't have sex for a long time after we met.) I can see that I am his "safe" person who he feels he is totally accepted by, which is nice. I bought him a massage a few years ago and it was his worse nightmare as this woman was burning incense and had all the oils and was touching him... He ran out of the massage room and came to find me and was practically in tears. I had to go back and ask her to open the windows to let air in, use unfragranced oils and about the touch thing. But he is like a child!
Is he interested in getting a diagnosis? It seems very possible that he is on the spectrum.
We use the term a lot when he does slightly weird things - we say he is being a bit aspergers, but I don't think he wants a proper diagnosis. For my sake I would like him to understand himself better. He can have meltdowns very quickly and go into super shut-down mode. Not with me but with people from outside, like the gasman or the postman if they don't shut the door properly, deliver something the time they say they will, or if somebody quotes him a price and then needs to make it a little bit more, he gets very, very upset and complains of stomach ache/headache and goes to bed saying it makes him feel the world is ending.
What kind of help can you get for aspergers though? Therapy?
You can get some kinds of therapy that are basically training in how to rub along in a society which often feels like an alien planet to you. The condition itself can't be fixed.
Yours is one of the very few threads where I think "Yes, he has!" instead of suspecting the 'D'H is just a selfish git. The sex, though, sounds horrendous and life must be quite difficult all round for you, what with having to modulate his sensory inputs all the time.
An expert diagnosis might put both your minds at ease a little. Reluctant as I am to say this, it would also help you decide whether - and how - to go forward in your relationship.
he gets very, very upset and complains of stomach ache/headache and goes to bed saying it makes him feel the world is ending. Specialists can help with coping strategies for occasions like this.
Just a thought, OP. I have sensory sensitivity and it is worse when dh touches my skin gentlygently. It is much better to be firm than 'feathery'.
I'm a therapist and while aspergers isn't something we would or could treat, we certainly can offer coping strategies for meltdown/shut downs and help with communication as well as anything else the client wanted to work on.
Actually I'd like to second what Puttheshelvesup said. My girlfriend presents female-aspie symptoms, though she's never had a diagnosis, and one of the indicators is a hypersensitivity to light touch. I have to touch firmly during intimacy or it just forms unbearable tickling, which often results in an unintentional knee to the crotch or elbow to the nose.
I'm not so sensitive in that regard (I use drugs that help a LOT) but I love it when she wears silk pyjamas.
Sounds just like someone I know. Definitely on the spectrum.
It seems without any doubt. The main issue is if you can cope with it, particularly the sexual side which seems pretty dire and might drive some other women away.
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