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Hello everyone

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Sarina R. Spatola, Jul 12, 2018.

  1. Sarina R. Spatola

    Sarina R. Spatola New Member

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    Hello, I just came across this site and I was reading a few threads and felt I needed to join in. I have been friends with an Aspie for nearly 10 years. We are both architects and met when we started at a firm on the same day and were sharing a two-man office, and we have been great friends ever since.

    Last summer he reached out to me as a friend for support when he became single (by his choice) after he left his 22-year marriage. We started dating casually 10 months ago, and last fall he got an official diagnosis, though he was sure he was on the spectrum for many years now.

    Last week he went from "I love you" to "I have to leave you" in less than an hour. I'm still a little shell-shocked by the quick circuit flip. I know that this is not about me, but being overwhelmed with "life". Although he did tell me that he loved me for the first time last month and that surprised him because since his marriage ended last year he didn't think he would ever love again. He also told me that his love for me is a different kind of feeling than he has ever had before and he doesn't know if he can handle it.

    I saw my counselor today because I have been such a mess, and she was not encouraging with the prospects of him coming back to me. I'm giving him his space, and always have. I miss my friend and my lover. I know I need to take care of me. I would love to hear some advice from the experts that live this every day.

    Part of what has thrown me off so much is my complete lack of tools to deal with him and his retreat/meltdown/shutdown. I know that if it is completely over I will be ok, just heartbroken for a while.
     
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  2. tree

    tree Blue/Green Staff Member V.I.P Member

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  3. clg114

    clg114 Still crazy, after all these years. Staff Member V.I.P Member

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    Welcome to AutismForums!
     
  4. Tom

    Tom Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Rebound Relationship ?

    As far as the quick switch, it might be related to some Aspies thinking more in Black & White. There's no way to know whats going on inside his head other then he expressed wanting to call it quits. I would go with that
     
  5. WittyAspie

    WittyAspie The One And Only V.I.P Member

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    This is a recurring theme. An aspie man suddenly decides he can’t handle a relationship and runs in the opposite direction. I’m not sure anyone on this site has ever given a satiafactory response as to why aspie men do this. It has really gotten me thinking though. What is it about the aspie brain that causes new women to come to this site week after week experiencing emotional turmoil because their aspie bf just flipped a switch and devastated them? If anybody is looking for a PhD idea, there you go.
     
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  6. AO1501

    AO1501 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I'm an Aspie male, and I experienced this. I don't mean to suggest this is what happens in each of these seemingly recurrent instances, but this is what happened to me:

    I have a very healthy, very happy, relationship with my partner, and she is wonderful, awesome, and someone I really can't imagine not having in my life. As others in the forum may also know because I've posted about her elsewhere, she is also an Aspie.

    We decided that we should get married, and the date we set was last Saturday. Everything was going really, really well, and she spent last week with me, getting the wedding organised and doing all the paperwork, etc. I was really happy. Couldn't have been happier.

    Then one day I got home from work and everything seemed really overwhelming. She wasn't feeling well, so wasn't very talkative, the house seemed totally chaotic, there was a lot of noise, the AC was on but the house was hot, and then she said something. I have no idea what it was because I couldn't process it, and had no idea what to say. I just suddenly felt swamped as if there was a meltdown coming, but I knew it wasn't that. I was suddenly surrounded by an angry collection of memories of a previous relationship which went badly wrong years ago, and couldn't switch off the hurt and frustration from it.

    Right that moment, I wanted to tell my partner that it was over. That my sanity depended on it, and I couldn't cope with all the consequences of a relationship. I wanted to say that, but I didn't.

    Instead I left the room and tried to work out what had just happened. I really had no idea how I had flipped so far so fast, but it was that moment of being so overwhelmed that nothing made sense except the vivid memories of a relationship gone bad.

    It probably took an hour to get back anywhere near the surface and feel that I could breathe again, by which time the impulse was fading a little. So I sat and thought and realised that I felt that I had no control, that I was scared that things would go bad, because they always have, and that it felt like I was being dragged along kicking and screaming, like used to happen when I was a child.

    But I also knew I was not that child any longer, and that my partner was so totally unlike any previous partners, that if things were ever going to go wrong, it would be a totally different way than I'd felt overwhelmed by, and that while I was not in total control, being a relationship with someone, total control didn't exist. However, I had just as much control as I ever did, just that my partner was taking some of my responsibilities from me, so I was no longer doing everything to run the household alone.

    What had happened was that something simply triggered all the hidden harm I've experienced at the hands of other people, and brought it all to the surface. Right there, that moment, I had needed to escape it, and ending the relationship was all I could do to manage it.

    Fortunately, I said nothing, because somewhere there was a voice that told me not to, that my partner wasn't the problem, but that I was. And later I apologised to her, and on Saturday, we got married.

    While this may not be why all Aspie men that flip do so, I'd be very surprised if there aren't those harmful experiences in most of us, and triggers that can set them off. And if this is not pretty close to the explanation for many of these instances, I'd be a little surprised.

    As to consequences, in my case, if I'd ended it and my partner had made any attempt to flip me back, it would have worked because I'd already promised that I would always let her back in if we came apart, but I would say that if an Aspie has ever in themselves felt a commitment to a partner or potential partner, there's a chance they can be flipped back if this happens. Precisely how would depend on the particular Aspie, but I'd say there is reason to try at least.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  7. AloneNotLonely

    AloneNotLonely Well-Known Member

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    It's rarely AS. These are either people not fit for relationships anyway or the person they left did something wrong but is oblivious to it. I bet forums for those "normal" folks are also full of it. AS just gets blamed because the interactions are different.
    He just left a 22 year marriage. He either left it for a minor thing, which means he's not fit for a relationship. Or he left the marriage because has seen the pure evil that a woman can turn into.

    Either way to expect a relationship out of this guy is... very very optimistic.

    Oh, by the way welcome OP. You can rest assured that I'm the least friendly person on this forum so don't get too discouraged.
     
  8. Sarina R. Spatola

    Sarina R. Spatola New Member

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    Thanks, folks. I know I will be ok, and I also know that for the long term this would not be a healthy relationship for me. As my counselor said, this will happen again, and I don't need this kind of upheaval in my life. I also deserve a partner in my life that will reciprocate my feelings and affection. I will be 49 next week and I have a 10-year-old child that I need to put first. This man was the first person I had dated since my divorce in 2009. My child only saw him occasionally and casually and is not attached to him. I kept my child protected from my dating and the romantic relationship because I am a parent first and I put my child's well being first. I will not have another person in his life unless it's a life-changing level of serious, and if my child doesn't like him, he will be gone. So, thank you all again for taking a few minutes to share your thoughts. I appreciate all your comments and I wish you all health and happiness.
     
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