Am I doing more harm than good?
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:00 pm
This is my first posting to any "blog" or wherever I am right now, about my personal life and struggles I am having. I just don't really know where else to turn, and maybe I can find some support here. First off, I am 33 years old and have been married to my husband for almost 2 years. Gosh, my story is so long that I don't know where to begin and I do not want to go on and on...but in a nutshell, here is me:
33; 1 semester left before I have my Masters in Social Work; love to be busy; never sit still; very witty and sarcastic; scatterbrained yet intelligent; the world's best procrastinator; and can stay up all night studying if that is what needs to be done, I am a night owl, a massive animal lover; I have a heart of gold; I want to save the world; I am the most compassionate, self-less, empathetic person I know; very loud and love, love, love to laugh!! I am spiritual, being educated in alternative treatment interventions, I am optimistic, always see the glass as half full, see the best in everyone despite their behavior, do silly things like tap dance around the house, sing full volume in high octaves with my dog, love to dance, and am touched by romance and chemistry that so many people share. I have ADHD , and a history of child abuse that leaves me "triggered" by things like silence, lack of feeling needed/liked by others etc.
Now here is the thing, about a year and a half ago we suspected my husband might have Aspergers after I took psychopathology and I saw a therapy session of someone who had similar affect responses as my husband. He and I were having some very hard times and I began to research all I could about Aspergers so that I could possibly understand how I was impacting him. He took the AQ screening test and scored WAY above the range of most people who end up having an official diagnosis. So, I have really tried my best to learn all I can about how "his world" is different than mine, and he has tried his best to do the same. Just before we began to learn all of this, he and I made several HUGE changes in our life, and if I knew then what I know now I would have never acted in such free spirited ways or encouraged him to "take chances" and seek happiness in a new job 60 miles from all of our family/friends. My way in the world is just so painful to him...
I try my hardest to not harm him by my actions, and do all that I can to meet him where he is at. I told him that now that I know better, I must do better because otherwise I would be just acting cruel.
In doing all I can to make his world safe, I am finding that I am losing myself. He has explained that he has sensory issues, so my days of carefree singing to my dog are limited. He explained that he doesn't understand my silly jokes or sarcasm, so I no longer hear the sound of my laughter. He has explained that he just can not relate to people/situations unless he has been through something similar and so my compassionate/empathetic side that wants to foster children or animals or volunteer to serve food to homeless people, or give our unused item to charity...all of those things are set aside. I know that my rushing around, or ability to go see our family/friends an hour away last minute, or that my crazy disorganized family sends him into massive overload and so I say "no" more times than I want.
Sometimes I just feel so alone and lost that I will break down and just cry uncontrollably. We live in the middle of nowhere now, and I have no friends/family out here. So, I will find tears pouring down my face at dinner and he then will ask me what is wrong and take my hand. That makes me cry more b-c I just wish that who he is could be all I need him to be and I feel so bad. He and I are really good at doing our best to talk with one another, now that we are coming from a place of understanding our differences, but then he sees how sad I am and then he feels bad about "who he is." I tell him to never feel bad about who he is, because he is a great person. I truly believe that people connect in life to teach each other great spiritual lessons, and he has done so much for me just by being who he is..he has helped me to heal from and learn new methods of dealing with my past and been such a supportive person in my life. He has grown so much because of who I am as well, but I just wonder...is it more damaging to him to stay in this relationship because I know that being in this relationship is so hard for him. And I also know that if I were not here, he wouldn't be devastated, he would be upset but maybe in the long run he'd be back to being "happy" in his life of solitude. I have talked with him about this, and he and I are just at a loss. I have done all I can, and am feeling that leaving is ultimately going to be what helps him get some sanity back in his mind. He is overwhelmed, unhappy, depressed, anxious, and my heart breaks for him.
ugh, this novel here didn't even do our story justice. It is so long, and so complex but this is it in a nutshell. I am so alone, and have sacrificed all that I love about myself to try to help make his world a happier place and yet he is still so unhappy. Thanks for the ear anyone who took time to listen.
Good night, I know my being up too late messes with his schedule. sleep tight everyone
?I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.?
?It is important to remember that we all have magic inside us.?
Joanne Kathleen Rowling
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 7:00 pm
Location: the island of defective toy santas
welcome to WP
you need to make your own life apart from your husband's life. you are not his appendage but your own person. you have to live in a way that works best for YOU. this reminds me of katherine hepburns' musing about how "men and women are not so well suited for each other - maybe they should just live next door to one another and drop in now and then." just my jejune opinion.
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2008 7:00 pm
In some ways, you are very good for each other; in other ways, you are mutually irritating. I'd recommend trying to make space in your lives to spend less, but better time together. You can join outside groups to pursue your interests and give him some time to re-collect his wits. His limitations may slowly change, especially now that you can understand them better.
We can change anything, but we can never change just one thing.
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:00 pm
Location: I come from the land of ice and snow
Your story sounds a lot like My wife and my story. We moved 1500 miles away from friends and family to get away from it all, and now because of circumstances we are moving back home so I can be closer to my family and my wife can get back to having a life.
Don’t give up on your relationship. your husband really needs you, he may just not know how to really tell you but Deep down inside he needs you. and I’m sure he enjoys your company.
With my wife all I really want is to just talk to her. She’s my only friend and I would be lost with out her. She may not understand me all of the time and we both have little happy fits of rage. But we just try to sit back and let what will happen, well happen , and then some time latter things calm down and we get back to life sure it’s messed up. But for us that’s just Life.
I really hope everything works out.
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:00 pm
Your husband is still in early days, regarding a diagnosis of Aspergers.
This is a major life-changing idea (having a neurological, er, "disorder" - as it is called).
Trying to understand each other better is commendable, however I think that it is also important not to take the whole thing toooo seriously. Remember that he is having to re-evaluate his life history with a new paradigm (having ASD). This is exciting, but also exhausting. Try not to do overtime on this!
I agree with other posters, that maintaining a "seperate" life, as well as a "life together" is good.
Just because your partner has trouble tolerating some things, does not mean that you must not do them.
There is usually a compromise somewhere in time and space.
Joined: Mon Dec 25, 2006 7:00 pm
If your relationship with this bloke is to continue, he's going to have to improve his relationship with reality, isn't he? I mean, pressuring you into misery while asserting his ignorance of what's going on isn't enough, is it?
I can only say such things because I was forced into a diagnosis because I didn't want to say farewell to a relationship - yes, the diagnosis has, in general, made me less happy but...
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