Sunday, 31 January 2016

Aspies with partners: how do you do it?

Aspies, Autists, and Spectrumesque folk:

If you have or have had a significant other of the romantic persuasion, how did you meet and how did you take it further?  And how do (or did) you make the whole relationship thing work?

Meandering around Aspie forums and blogs, I've often come across anecdotes like: "I really don't get on with people at all.  I don't have any friends... in fact I was saying to my wife of 14 years just the other day...."

Whaaa?  If you're bad with people and have "no" friends, how on earth have you pulled off one of the biggest, most challenging, most significant relationships in our social structure?

But this is a thing.  Looking at my own network, I know about as many Aspies who are married or in long term relationships as ones who have always or mostly been single.  It's clearly something that lots of us can pull off.  (No pun intended, get your mind out the gutter.)

I can't.  I've had one relationship that could be called serious, that lasted a few months when I was 19.  The whole turn-out was a dreadful mistake for both of us.  Since then there's been nada, but I haven't really made much of an effort to be honest.  The whole business sound like far more trouble than it's worth.

But I am genuinely curious about those who can make a significant relationship happen. How did you meet?  How did you fall in love, or realise you were into each other?  How do you cope with shared living space and competing sensory needs?  Does one partner do most of the emotional labour to keep the relationship afloat, or do you share it evenly?  It sounds utterly impossible to me - so how are you doing it?