Hi, I have just read through some of the posts and cannot believe how many tell others to leave. My husband battles everyday with this disorder and just the other night he asked how he got it. Life is very hard living with him. We have two kids aged 15 and 9 and they find it hard, but also 'that's just dad'. I have spent the last 16 years working around his quirks. I get up when he is leaving for work, so I don't interrupt his morning routine. When I am cleaning I ask him where he wants his belongings put and work around that. When I'm doing the food shopping I buy his stuff separate and place them in his container that is just for him. The kids know that is dad's stuff and what will happen if it's touched. I never force him to attend social events with me, unless he is comfortable and offers to come. I let him have one free Saturday per fortnight to do his trail bike riding (which is his obsession). Sundays are family day and he loves that. He is allowed to sleep in on weekends, if he is not working or bike riding until 9am. We don't have parties as the noise frustrates him. If the kids do have friends over for birthdays, we organise well in advance and he prepares himself for the day. It has been a struggle, but if I give him a routine and we stick to it, he is most of the time okay. Emotions are left up to me. But he does try, however it is always on his terms and I know that he struggles so when I do get a cuddle, it means more than anything to me, because he means it. I get my morning kiss before leaving for work, because he has incorporated it into his morning routine, so it comes naturally. He is very caring and gentle. Works very hard, but struggles with his job as he deals with the public and prefers to sit in his office and talk to no-one, however he knows that I am better suited to being at home. Does things his way and shows how much he loves us his way. It is not conventional. His has unusual ways of showing his love. But having the condition is not conventional. I have learnt to understand him. I have my days where I do wish I wasn't around, but I also know he needs me and loves me unconditionally, but cannot show it the normal way. Our kids mean everything to him and he will build things or re-arrange a bedroom or bake their favourite cookies, just to show he is thinking of them. For Mother's day I got a pendant with three love hearts. He picked it. One heart from of each them. When I said that you are being emotional, he just responded with, "well there are three of us and it has three hearts'. How can you not love that. Yes, I do miss the day to day romance that comes with marriage, but I also know that I have a very loyal, loving, caring and gentle man to spend the rest of my years with. I have focused on the positives of living with someone with AS, and that what makes a successful life with them.
I will try to always remember what you said: to focus on the positives of living with someone with AS. This does give me some relief., thinking of the positives I am still getting to know him. I try to figure out ways to make him happy. For the most part, it seems he would prefer I'm not here. But surely that is actually his AS, i.e. not looking up when I walk into the room, not saying good morning in the morning, nor even goodnight (unless I ask him to, and he has made an effort), usually not having dinner with me even when I'm standing in the kitchen too, but if so, we have a strained or no conversation at all. When I come home from work, he stays in a distant room and does not greet me. When he comes home from work first, he feels no need to greet me and will walk right past me without a word. As very little is said between us, I feel ambivalent about even coming home. However, there were times in the past when I was happy and it seemed there was a much greater rapport between us. I will try harder to make conversation, and be more careful to keep our lives stress-free by rarely inviting anyone over. We just had 3 guests for dinner on Mother's Day. (He was kinder and more gracious to them than he is to me, of course. I even saw him smile! Haven't seen that smile in so long.) I think he was relieved when the event was over -- a stressor gone. So I will limit events like that. I think he is upset about a small incident that occurred...yes about 5 months ago. Since communication is not his strong point, I will make an effort to bring up that topic and see if we can gently make some headway. I will keep in mind the positives of this relationship, as you suggested. Thank you. Your post has lifted my spirits. I appreciate your perspective. And it is heaven to know I am not alone in this experience...even though, at times, my gosh, it is wearisome. I still have questions....DOES he have feelings? Would you say yes? It seems my husband has gone out of his way to offer me nothing but an expressionless face. Then, speaks only factually. Yes, I know, that's AS. Incidentally, I am the one who diagnosed him. I knew he had it before I married him. I had no idea how profoundly it would affect our relationship. But, it is becoming clear. He could be described as a gorgeous, sparkling, welcoming swimming pool. But when you get close, is it really only 4 inches deep? I think he has purposely withdrawn from me -- perhaps to express anger or frustration. Once we reconcile, I hope the pool will seem deep again...and life with him will seem worth living. Then maybe I'll be the one to say how great are the positive aspects. SO glad to hear it from you. I am pressing on, with renewed hope. Thank you!
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