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Featured Advice!!! PLEASE HELP!

Discussion in 'PDD-NOS, Social Anxiety and Others' started by Living with Autism, May 20, 2019.

  1. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Hello all!

    I hope you all are having a wonderful day so far. I am new to this community. I have a financee that I suspect is on the spectrum. She is extremely smart in the area of academic but she struggles in social settings. She fits all the criteria in the DSM V for ASD. However, she is not diagnosed. I need your help with the following:

    This coming summer, I will be traveling with my family to my home country that I haven't been to since 25 years. I invited my fiancee to company me on the trip with my family. She agreed to go. She is a graduate student getting her Master in Psychology. In order for her to graduate, she will need to take a comprehensive exam this coming September. Our trip is from July to August. We had a big fight yesterday because she was upset that I told her that we will be staying with my family while we're on vacation (which I invited her to join our family). We are renting a 4 bedroom house while we are on vacation. She is upset that she will not have the time to study because we are staying with my family and we are known to be "loud" and my sister has small children that wake up very early. My fiancee stated that she rather get a separate hotel room with just me and her. I told her financially I cannot get another place since I covered everything for her (plane ticket and expenses). In addition, this trip is a family trip and it doesn't make sense if we stay in separate places. She continues to state that she wants her own space with her own restroom so that she is not being rushed.
    She further stated that she feels like I am not being understanding to her school situation. I let her know that we will have time to study since I am also a student and will be studying for my comprehensive exam. No matter how I explain to her she insisted on me forcing her to adapt to my family way. This is suppose to be a vacation but turn out very stressful and she is not understand that we are inviting her to join along. She further wants the environment to change and accommodate to her needs instead of understanding how it would affect the people around her.

    I need help as I feel helpless!!

    Thank you in advance!
     
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  2. Kevin1968

    Kevin1968 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    If I was in her situation I wouldn't even consider a two month holiday unless it was going to allow lots of time for relaxation and studying.

    And while you are comfortable with your family and able to relax with them, to her they are effectively strangers who she probably doesn't want to offend by asking to be left alone to study.
     
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  3. BraidedPony

    BraidedPony Just Enjoying Survival V.I.P Member

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    if i were her i wouldnt even go. why would she want to?
    You wont even acknowledge her need for privacy and study time.
    You sound selfish to me and i wouldnt put up with it.
     
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  4. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Thank you for your reply and insight! We have been knowing each other for 4 years and she slept over numerous times. However this is the first time we are going on vacation together as a family. I make sure to let her know the following:
    1. Our family do not take offense when she has to study. We understand that school is important.
    2. We have our own room and space
    3. We can do study anytime she wants.
    4. We have 1 week on our own.
     
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  5. Mia

    Mia Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Try and get a refund on the tickets and accommodations. She shouldn't be going with you, and giving up studying, researching and writing her Masters. You are effectively 'dooming' her to fail by placing her in a situation such as this. She obviously does not study the way you do, and needs quiet and peace. It was similar when I studied, any interruptions, noise, distracted me greatly.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
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  6. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Thank you Mia! your comment is very helpful. I let her know I support her decisions. As an NT, I am learning to be more understanding with my partner. This is the reason why I create this post.
     
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  7. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Hi there! my purpose to create this post is to learn more about how individuals with autism process information so that I can learn to be more understanding. I would greatly appreciate your positive feedback without being judgmental. If I was truly self-fish, I wouldn't even make this post to ask for help to understand about ASD.

    I hope you have a wonderful day!
     
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  8. Tom

    Tom Well-Known Member

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    Without a formal diagnosis we are not sure what we are actually dealing with here. But for discussion sake lets say she is on the spectrum. Certain experiences are very different for people on the spectrum. We can usually tolerate crowded/noisy environments for a few hours, and with much preparation maybe a few days, but more then that is very very difficult. Social things wear us down a lot faster then NTs. Its not selfishness, its actually good sense for an Aspie, and self preservation. Too much overload could lead to a meltdown. The things she is asking for, like separate accommodations, will allow her to have a place to retreat to for quiet and privacy and recharge. I think that if you can't manage it, it would be best to talk with her to see if she wishes to cancel her participation. Family is important, but your spouse is the most important. Autism is forever, and has no cure. Small gradual changes are possible, if she learns more about it and you learn to work together. I'm fairly experienced at coping with stuff as an Aspie, I survived 20 years in the military, but just the idea of spending a month in a crowded busy family environment makes my blood run cold! :D
     
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  9. BlueSky Aozora

    BlueSky Aozora Well-Known Member

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    It must be so difficult to have anything decided. Are you a Master student too, same as her?
     
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  10. Mary Terry

    Mary Terry Well-Known Member

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    Have you considered her staying a shorter time with your family? Maybe a 2 week stay is enough and she can then fly back home alone and resume her studies.
     
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  11. GadAbout

    GadAbout Active Member

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    I can sympathise with both of you, in this conflict. Not only is there the expectation of family time, which conflicts with study time and which might have extra tension because she wants to get along with her future in-laws; but she also wants to please her fiance. The whole situation symbolises the struggle between her personal needs and success and the demands of her future family. That's a biggie!

    Instead of her traveling for the whole time with you, could she just fly to join you for maybe 3 or 4 days, then return to her studies? I know if this were me in the situation, it's exactly what I would want.
     
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  12. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Thank you for your thorough insight! I will definitely keep this in mind. Thank you!!!
     
  13. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Hi, Yes! I am also a Master student!
     
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  14. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Hi! yes! we are staying for 3 week and then doing 1 week by ourselves. We created a study schedule for time to study away from the distractions.
     
  15. Living with Autism

    Living with Autism Active Member

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    Thank you for your input! and thank you for sympathizing with us in this situation.
     
  16. asperagus

    asperagus A vegetable on the spectrum

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    @Living with Autism I do sympathize with both of you. Just wanted to say that AS are as heterogeneous as NT's, so your fiancée (whether she has AS or not) will have her likes and dislikes. I think it'd have been more important to consider how she felt about everything prior to booking.

    Now that it's booked, I'd consider the option of cancelling the trip. If your fiancée feels she wont get the tranquility she needs to study on the trip, don't push it. If you need to book a separate hotel, then do it.
     
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  17. BlueSky Aozora

    BlueSky Aozora Well-Known Member

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    Agree with this.

    To the OP:

    Maybe it's hard to discuss further with her after a fight, but this is a good suggestion. You can ask her if she's ok with this plan (of course, if you yourself are okay with this plan too. I missed your post where you said you want to stay 3 weeks - 1 week for both of you only):
    • You two can fly together in the beginning.
    • She greets your family, stays for about 3-4 days.
    • Then she will go back to her home.
    What you can do:
    • If you have a bit more money, you can change the date of her flight ticket.
    • If not, is it possible to ask her to top-up her money a bit for this?
    • Or if she really doesn't want to go, cancel hers. Will you get your money refunded?

    You must be itching to go back to your hometown after 25 years! Hope you enjoy the trip.

    • If your family ask why she goes back so soon, just mention to them "she loves to be here, but she needs to prepare for the exam, it's so hard". Usual people wont understand how hard Master is though..
    • If they compare her with you as in why she need to go when you stay here.. you can joke while praising her, like maybe "i'm proud of her, she's so hardworking" or anything good.

    By the way, if she's really on the spectrum, it might be helpful if you know these:
    • from what I know, people on the spectrum are not that good with travel/vacation (of course maybe there's exception) since it disrupts the routines and unknown situation/place fuels more anxiety. Maybe.
    • Family gatherings also gives more anxiety. But if in small number, limited time, and she knows everybody, it might be ok.
    I think if you're ok with this, then it's fine..

    By the way, if she's like my aspie husband... my husband couldn't go anywhere unless his current activity that makes him have anxiety finishes, or reduced for that day. We couldn't even last a day of vacation:joycat: In your case, maybe she'll be too worried about her exam, that she couldn't enjoy or even go to new places. But if she feels more secured about what she's worrying about, and if you discuss in good timing, she might agree to go with you. Just hope that she'll be okay on that particular day too...

    But I don't know her, you know her more, so I might be totally wrong about all these.

    Good luck and enjoy your vacation:airplane::)
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
  18. Juliettaa

    Juliettaa Black Sheep. Society of One. V.I.P Member

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    I could not cope with being on holiday with ANYONE other than my husband.

    Bring studying into the equation - impossible!

    Bring in-laws into the equation - meltdown!

    I am female, diagnosed in adulthood, and have always limited my time around other people. When I met my husband, I was not diagnosed and ASD/Aspie wasn't 'out there' - I'm talking 30 years ago.

    My husband just accepted all of my idiosyncrasies, he said it made me who I was and that's why he loved me, because I was different, quirky. One of my 'rules' was 'I can visit your parents with you, but it can only be for a couple of hours at a time. I cannot stay overnight, do not ask me to'. Because this was respected, I was able to visit them and stay longer, but never, ever overnight.

    Irrespective of whether your fiancee is autistic or not, in order for a relationship to work, there has to be a mutual respect about boundaries. If she doesn't want to go anywhere (and the same applies to you), that should be respected by the other party.

    In this situation, I agree with your fiancee 100%.

    Losing money by cancelling the holiday is a small price to pay for your fiancee's well-being.

    Next time, have a frank discussion way before booking something and ensure both parties are in agreement.
     
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  19. Dreamchild

    Dreamchild always curious

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    I don't want to speak for anyone else, so ...

    I moved into a new house a month ago and am having difficulty sleeping in the new environment. Close friends are about to come stay in my home and sleep in the room above mine for a couple of weeks (while they're home is worked on). I'm very anxious about trouble that people walking on the stairs or ceiling above will cause to my sleep ability, and I'm also anxious about how things will work when everyone gets up for work in the morning. If they get up before me, can they be quiet enough for me to sleep 'til my alarm? How will meals work?

    I'm using a personal example to illustrate how a person with ASD can view such a situation. Private time and a "sanctuary" space are very important to cope with stress, especially social stress. Routine is important for many of us too. She may also be very sensitive to her environment and easily disturbed and worried how it will affect her concentration and energy levels.

    I wish you both the best!