High-functioning autism is not a one-size-fits-all diagnosis.However, understanding the impact of the neurological differences and the arc of possibility upon which they can play out in an intimate relationship is essential for fair couples work, and certainly for providing substantive assistance to the person with the diagnosis. The preceding article was solely written by the author named above.If you are involved in a relationship with a person who has been diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, officially known as high-functioning autism (HFA), you’re likely familiar with this scenario: You have a discussion with your partner. In this case, you have to struggle with the realization that your partner did not mean to hurt you.
—you’re hit with something hurtful that takes the wind out of your sails.
There was no intent to abuse, but you are reeling just the same. Do you deny it because you understand it was not inflicted intentionally? These are two time-honored methods used by many of the individuals who come to my office for counseling regarding this aspect of their relationships.
If you suspect that your partner is on the spectrum but has no diagnosis, please bear in mind that a professional assessment is essential; there is no online quiz or self-help book that will help you to make that diagnosis on your own. If your partner is hurting you emotionally and you can’t seem to get him or her to understand you when you talk about your pain, as a starting point, consider couples work with a counselor who understands HFA. Any views and opinions expressed are not necessarily shared by Good
The couples work will be helpful regardless of whether HFA is a factor, and as is frequently the case with couples with whom I work, an assessment becomes part of our work together. The person either has or does not have the diagnosis. Questions or concerns about the preceding article can be directed to the author or posted as a comment below.
Instead, I took a deep breath and clicked the window closed. Paul and I dated for three months; not long, I know, and we had been long-distance for most of it.
But our connection had been instant and it deepened very quickly.
He had to have certain things just so — in winter and fall, even on days when it wasn’t that cold, he had to wear long-underwear under his pants.
He possessed odd idiosyncrasies that you wouldn’t notice at first glance.
When the intense feeling between us shallowed and then vanished almost as instantly as it began, following an all-in courtship that involved traveling to visit his family (twice! Related: Girl Talk: I Always Ask The Big Questions Paul has mild autism (meaning he’s on the highly functioning end of the autism spectrum).
) and his relocating to New York City with a primary goal of being with me, I felt like I had woken from a strange dream. Not, like, “OMG, I think he’s autistic” in the way that many people flippantly use the term nowadays.