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DH treats me differently now that I'm autistic

15 replies

Apparentlychanged · 01/05/2021 09:15

Ever since I was diagnosed with autism, my DH seems to have decided that I am now socially inept. It's not malicious per se, but it does annoy me as it's quite frequent.

For example, recently I told him a story about how a man on TV said that his wife didn't think he was a great performer (at his craft). I said to DH that this was amusing as he'd unintentionally made it sound as if his wife thought he was bad in bed, to which DH replied that he was probably joking on purpose, knowing what it would sound like.

I (still amused at this point) questioned whether a guy would readily joke about something like that, and DH replied: "Well, you're autistic, so you don't understand jokes."

AIBU to find this irritating? I know it doesn't sound like a big deal and in the grand scheme it isn't, but I haven't changed and yet every time I say or question something it now gets labeled as some kind of autistic misunderstanding. I am actually good with jokes and sarcasm, so that suddenly no longer being the case is unsettling to me.

On the other hand, I don't want DH to minimise how the condition affects me, and I'd like to get a carer to help me with some things. So I don't know what to do here. Do I just leave it?

OP posts:

Aprilshowersandhail · 01/05/2021 09:19

Suggest he sees a Dr about his Twatism... I couldn't live like that.
Coincidentally my dh is seeking an adhd diagnosis atm. Hasn't made me treat him any differently..


FontyMcFontface · 01/05/2021 09:19

It’s irritating. Can you let him know how you feel?


BeingATwatItsABingThing · 01/05/2021 09:24

Wow! He sounds like a knob!

My DH and I have discussed the possibility of me being autistic and how it affects my day to day life. I am socially awkward so do use DH as a bit of a shield for that. He doesn’t treat me any differently though. He just helps me in situations he knows I find difficult without ever belittling me.


AdventureIsWaiting · 01/05/2021 09:25

Can you tell him to stop?

I have ASD. My DH went through a phase post-diagnosis of telling me to "stop being autistic" if I was super annoying (one of my problems is I struggle understanding where 'the line' is, e.g. personal space / stop talking or poking about something). Previously he would have said "stop being annoying" (which is fair enough Grin). I asked him to stop, explained why I didn't like it and he did.


Thehawki · 01/05/2021 09:25

YANBU, it sounds like he’s not getting the ‘autism is a spectrum’ thing at all. I think you need to sit him down and remind him that you do have a sense of humour, autistic people CAN have a sense of humour and the diagnosis hasn’t changed you, it’s explained you. He needs to understand that not every single aspect of autism will apply to every autistic person. He also needs to know that autism isn’t a stick to beat you with, it’s not a trump card to use every time he thinks he’s right.


ConfusedAdultFemale · 01/05/2021 09:31

He does know ASD affects all individuals differently right..? Not everyone with autism doesn’t understand jokes. Not everyone with autism is socially inept either. You tell him he’s being incredibly offensive and rude to all autistic people saying things like that.


Branleuse · 01/05/2021 09:32

Has it been a long time or are you recently diagnosed? Could you talk to him about it ?
Tell him to not forget that you are the same person as before and have no more issue understanding jokes as you did pre diagnosis, and understanding humour is not something youve particularly struggled with, and youd appreciate if he didnt keep treating you as if youre inept. Your diagnosis was to help you understand why you think/do things the way you do. Not a stick to beat you with or a reason to be treated like youre suddenly inept.
Maybe he needs to read up a bit more on autism in women, because some of his jokes are kinda hurtful and you really hope hes not meaning to hurt you, and then calling YOU socially inept.


EmeraldShamrock · 01/05/2021 09:37

You're not autistic as a person it is condition on a massive spectrum completely debilitating in every day life.
Most people with level 1 is capable of a one to one conversation.
DS is level 3 not sure if he'll have a job or be married.
He needs to do some reading.


Ponoka7 · 01/05/2021 09:37

How did the diagnosis come about and did he also suggest that you could be autistic? Why do you need a carer? I'm autistic and so is my eldest and my GD, before I'm pounced on.


BeastOfBODMAS · 01/05/2021 09:39

That sounds horrible.

I would ask why he is being deliberately hurtful? As you, an autistic person, can easily identify that as a tactless and unkind thing to say, he should have no excuse.


FeelinHappy · 01/05/2021 09:40

He sounds like a very tedious person to be married to.

Every marriage is different but to me, mutual respect is the absolute foundation of loving relationships. I wonder whether your diagnosis might be illuminating ways in which he does not treat you with as much respect as he should.


Apparentlychanged · 01/05/2021 10:01


How did the diagnosis come about and did he also suggest that you could be autistic? Why do you need a carer? I'm autistic and so is my eldest and my GD, before I'm pounced on.

He's never suggested it, and when it first came about was skeptical about someone like me, who is a social person with quite a few friends, having that kind of condition (with 'that kind' I mean a condition that's primarily known for being a social communication disorder). I was diagnosed after a decade of misdiagnoses and being told I simply didn't want to get better.

My mum was also diagnosed a few years ago with ASD level 2, and she can hold a conversation perfectly fine. Her issues were always explained away as her just being stupid and suffering from manic depression as well as a host of other mental health conditions.

I am not able to live fully independently, because whilst I don't have a learning disability as such, I struggle to take care of my basic hygiene and nutrition. This is all quite embarrassing as I have quite a high powered job (from home). I thought as I can afford it, I'll make my life a little less miserable by hiring someone to help.
OP posts:

EmeraldShamrock · 01/05/2021 10:14

@Apparentlychanged It must have been a huge relief getting a diagnoses. You're still that same person nothings changed except that you have a better understanding of why things go sideways for you. He's probably reading snippets and trying to understand. It takes time. Flowers


Apparentlychanged · 01/05/2021 11:05

@EmeraldShamrock yes, but I don't always know how much I'm supposed to put up with when it comes to DH. I don't quite know what the norm is, but DH can be spectacularly insensitive at times.

OP posts:

BeastOfBODMAS · 01/05/2021 21:34

@Apparentlychanged your post has been gnawing at me all day and I came back to say:

It is really important that you don’t let this diagnosis stop you from setting firm boundaries in how you allow others to treat you. Don’t second guess yourself because of a label of “social communication disorder”.

If a comment like this from your H, or anyone else, does not sit right it is ABSOLUTELY within your right to assert that you don’t like it and it is not to happen again.

Trust your judgement. Don’t worry about the norm or how an NT person might take something, your feelings are yours and they are valid. How much you are supposed to put up with is wherever you choose to draw that line.

I’m sorry if this seems like a really serious talking to off the back of a single unkind comment from your H, but your last post really struck me. I was in a really unsupportive relationship when I was diagnosed and I wish someone had given me a good shake.

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