All my trust is gone
I was recently diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum at 49 and it was actually a relief as it explained why my childhood, school in general and relationships had been a disaster.
I met a guy that 'got me' but he was quite immature and selfish. Throughout our 15 years together, he seemed to constantly get crushes on women and had no idea that pursuing them and discussing really personal details with them was wrong. When I had a random friend repeat to me something he had told them about issues with our sex life ... I realised he was looking for 'pity sex'.
It was friends, work colleagues, random people. It was like he lived his life with one foot out the door in case someone 'better' came along. I kept forgiving him as he always managed to make me feel it was my fault. So I decided I would never get married.
He finally convinced me that he really loved me, would never hurt me and we got married. I finally felt safe ...
Then two weeks later he ran into his high school sweetheart at his reunion and became obsessed with her. I came across stuff on his phone when he asked me to grab a number for him ... so dug deeper. He was besotted and he was making out we had a loveless marriage and insanely jealous and a nag. I was so hurt.
He kept telling me he couldn't help it, would promise to stop, do it again ... repeat, repeat, repeat. Each time, I'd give him less and less back.
It's been over five years now and I feel like I have been taken advantage of emotionally ... he did it again the other day, after swearing he had not been in touch with her. I feel so empty, but feel guilty as we just had a fight.
I'm not processing the whole thing very well and not understanding so many things - I'm not good with reading good and bad intentions. I feel hurt and angry and then the next day it's like I have forgotten it and things go back to normal. I can't seem to hang onto the feelings of hurt and rejection and so it cycles again.
I feel mentally trapped and confused. Is this a common Autism trait?
Hello Einstein Duck, and a warm welcome and whether or not this is an Autism trait I can't say but know that it still happens to other people and have had many comments similar to what you've told us.
You can't be sure if he has been in contact with this other person, and if you are able to trust him and since you have this doubt, then it's possible for him to contact her by other means.
The problem is he's said 'he couldn't help it, would promise to stop', but the proof is in the pudding so to speak, and when he keeps doing it then he has broken, not only his promise but also his regard for you, being his wife.
This must be very disappointing for you and do feel so sorry, unfortunately, I can't tell you what to do, but can suggest that visit your doctor, and please ask them about the 'mental health plan', this entitles you to 10 Medicare sessions per year.
If you are able to get back to us that would be great.
Hi Einsteins Duck
I feel for you so deeply as your husband puts you through what sounds like hell on earth. In my opinion, it's incredibly unfair and incredibly selfish and thoughtless, to say the least.
When people speak of 'a sense of self', I like to consider different senses of self. So, you can have a logical sense of self or 'the sage', an emotional sense of self or 'the feeler' and a variety of others. Sounds strange but it's a bit like having multiple personalities with the core sense of self developing the ability to consciously access each one under a variety of circumstances, depending on what's needed. When I think of 'the commander', this would be a sense of self that dictates 'Okay soldier, enough of stuffing around. You need to pull your socks up and get on with things. None of this emotional garbage, there's a job to be done'. The commanding sense of self can sound pretty brutal at times, with this kind of internal dialogue.
When considering the phrase 'To be in 2 minds', from my own experience I can have 2 selves in battle at the same time. Dialogue between the sage and the feeler can sound a little like
F: I am angry, I'm furious. I want to completely destroy that person
S: You can't destroy them, for you really can't afford to burn that bridge right now
F Scr*w bridges, burn 'em all!
S: Calm down, breathe. You're completely out of control
F: I won't calm down. I shouldn't have to calm down. That person is a complete a-hole
and it goes on. Applogies for the language. The feeler in me can have a bit of a potty mouth at times 🙂 Mind you, the feeler in me can also be an incredibly loving person when she feels/senses a deeply loving connection with someone.
Would you say your logical sense of self is in battle with you're deeply feeling sense of self? If so, perhaps the question comes down to which one you wish to access more of, which one you wish to exercise more.
By the way, there is so much info out there on the super natural abilities of autism. If you search 'Autism', what you typically get from a medical perspective is 'the problems/challenges/faults'. If you search for 'The super natural abilities of autism', it's a completely different story. With one of the super or incredibly natural abilities involving 'imagination' in some cases, such people with this ability are outstanding visionaries. They can easily see/imagine the path ahead in their mind's eye. While in 2 minds, the path is not always clear.
Hi Einstein’s duck,
My heart goes out to you, to not experience this type of betrayal once, but consistently over a period of time with different women must be soul-destroying. The way I see it is, once could perhaps be forgiven, if it was an old-high school crush, but the number of different people suggests a very worrying pattern. This speaks a lot about who he is as a person and how he loves, and frankly it’s nowhere near up to scratch. It must be awful to never be able to feel secure and just relax into your relationship. I have felt the same way over the years and it makes you feel very alone. To have your future and your heart into someone else’s hands such as this must be very difficult. I suppose you have two options, stay or leave. If you stay, he may decide to work at it but I expect that it will be a very tough habit to break and there may be slip ups along the way. Do you have any idea which way you’re leaning at the moment?
Hi Einstein’s duck,
I can certainly sympathize with how you are feeling and I think most of us have been there at some point in our lives, knowing we have to make a difficult decision but wanting to not accept it for a little while longer. I think the thing you honestly have to ask yourself is “do you see it changing” and if not then you have your answer. That being said, you don’t have to make any rash decisions. Talk with your sister and let her know where you’re at and hopefully you can have that as your back-up should you decide that you’ve had enough. When the time is right you won’t be able to take anymore and will do it almost on auto-pilot.
Hello Einstein Duck, anyone wanting to have 'pity sex' can happen on many an occasion, especially when a spouse or partner wants to talk to someone they have liked for a long time and it's performed because they feel as though they should do this to brighten up the other person's day, rather than they actually want to and it's different than having 'charity sex' which can happen in a relationship/marriage simply because it's a way to please your other half, but both are to please the other person, as it's believed that sex will improve the person's mood, although I'm not a doctor to qualify.
Either way, this may only please only one person, while the other one just wishes it was finished and had hoped it didn't occur and worried about the repercussions.
Hi Einsteins Duck
After so many years together, I imagine this is an incredibly upsetting decision to make. Either way, staying or leaving may be painful. Perhaps the question comes down to which decision will be least painful in the long run.
With him 'sitting it out', do you think he's well aware of the cycle you speak of? Do you think he's actually basically happy with the way the cycle works, to some degree? Does it offer him the best of both worlds? Of course, I don't know how he thinks and I could be way off but do you think it's a matter of 'I'll test the waters outside of my relationship, see what's appealing', you get upset, he waits this out and then he has you back again and the cycle repeats, which pleases him? Are you doing all the hard work involved in his cycling? The reason I wonder is based on my marriage working in a cycle that kinda suits my husband but it's upsetting to me. The cycle I mention is different to your situation but it's still a cycle and I woke up to exactly how it works not too long ago.
Unless your partner stops the cycle, you remain in it. With your partner mentioning he can't help himself, of course he can. Even if this means going to speak to a counselor or therapist to figure out why he does what he does, he can help himself and you and your relationship. Whenever my husband says 'I can't help it, that's just me', my response these days is 'Of course you can help it, you just refuse to find or look for the best in yourself because it involves work and you not wanting to do the work becomes my problem'. Would you say you know exactly what hard work's like, based on all the hard work you've done in your relationship at times, throughout various parts of those cycles?
Einsteins Duck, give yourself a pat on the back for all the hard work you've done, you deserve it. When you consider all that forgiveness you've worked so hard on, time and time again, that's a lot of hard work. You also deserve no more cycling around. It can become exhausting and even depressing at times, when we're working so hard to conform to a cycle that suits someone else. Btw, it can be triggering when you hear your partner say to people 'Yeah, life's really good' while you're standing thinking 'Why does life not feel so good for me?' Their life cycles are good for them, in their opinion (as long as we're not being 'too difficult' in the process). Grrr!
I wish you only the best when it comes to your path ahead. You deserve the best 🙂