Posted by: frogstale | February 23, 2014

Doormat no more

I haven’t talked much about my relationship with my second husband with Aspergers.  It has been unfolding the whole time I have been blogging.  Maybe because it is too painful to share.

I found a community of people who understand what I am dealing with when co-parenting with a personality disordered ex. (Thank you!)

I haven’t yet found that sense of peace and understanding when the relationship involves a husband with Aspergers.  One site I found was a bit helpful but the overwhelming feeling was that it just isn’t possible to have a relationship with someone with Aspergers.  Because I was still trying I couldn’t deal with all the negativity.

Of course, that brings up parallels with those of us who tried to have relationships with Narcissists or Sociopaths.  The overwhelming advice given – and one which I wholeheartedly endorse – is run for your life after preparing as much as you can.  That may seem just as negative – but it really isn’t possible to have a relationship that is healthy with a non diagnosed person with a personality disorder.

That same advice doesn’t hold for Asperger relationships.  I think it is possible to have a meaningful relationship with someone with Aspergers.  But.  And there are a lot of buts.

  • but not if it is a second marriage
  • but not if you have children that aren’t shared biologically
  • but not if you haven’t thoroughly talked about your values and hopes for the future
  • but not if he doesn’t want it as much as you
  • but not if he isn’t prepared to put in some effort to maintain it

…. and the list goes on.

I have tried.  I have given up many hopes, dreams and expectations from this marriage – and it still isn’t enough.

Just like my first marriage – lack of empathy and understanding is the key to the reason it is failing.

My second husband just doesn’t ‘get it’.  No matter how hard I try to be understanding, reasonable, explain, even email because he prefers the written word to talking – he makes assumptions and judgements about me that are not correct.  Not all – and I know I am far from perfect – but the big ones he does make that are so off the planet wrong – hang over our relationship and colour everything.

I can’t be with a man who feels that way about me anymore.

What I have also learned is that whatever the root cause for the lack of empathy – be it a personality disorder or Aspergers – the end result is the same.  An unsustainable relationship unless you like being a doormat.

I have to finally learn to respect myself enough to know that I am flogging a dead horse – and I don’t think I can be a doormat anymore.


  1. Good for you for taking the power over your life and realizing that you deserve more. Of course I don’t know you, but from what I’ve read it may be worth examining why you were drawn to these people. It sounds like there may be a pattern, and I think it’s worth examining, if only to avoid making the same mistakes. Good luck, and stay strong!

  2. I have thought about that question a lot. And don’t have an answer. At the beginning of my first marriage there were clues galore that something was amiss, but I was 25, in love and I chose to dismiss them as aberrations. They weren’t – they were the real him and the nice man didn’t exist. With my second husband, there were NO CLUES.

    For 18 months we were really happy and good together – even through his redundancy and being out of work for 9 months. He was the polar opposite of my first husband. I liked myself when I was with him. He was kind, generous, loving, attentive. I REALLY loved him.

    The only question mark in my head was when we argued, which wasn’t often – he was similar to my ex husband. Exaggerated, talked over me, didn’t listen, mocked me. But once the words were out – he was very quick to calm down and we would talk about it. He would think about what we had talked about and adjust his behaviour.

    I think the rot set in when he got his Asperger’s diagnosis – which was related to problems he was having with his son, not me. Seems like things went downhill after that. I think he was given an excuse for his behavior and all the things he found difficult and became his ‘natural’ Aspergers self. Absorbed, selfish, giving into his obsessions.

    Where I went wrong was accepting less from him – and then less – and then less. I should have known when to give up.

    So I feel like my issues are naivety, trusting in others, and not knowing when to give up.

    And of course that old old one – fear of being alone.

    All food for thought. So thanks for your question.

  3. I am in the same boat: My boyfriend (whom I have a son with) has aspergers and a splash of narcissist-personality-disorder. The second part has not been diagnosed, but I know when he gets into the psychologist they’ll figure it out. I was emotionally abused growing up, neglected, the oldest of three kids which made me the full time babysitter and maid. I now am with a man who is emotionally abusive, and expects me to simply be the full time babysitter and maid. I’m starving to be in a normal relationship. I’ve been abused long enough. Good luck to you, and all others reaching for an answer.

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