I Tried the Aspie Way, and it Didn’t Work!

If you have adopted the Aspie Way philosophy and it isn’t working, there are several possible reasons. First, please read the About page here.

But if you’re basically healthy, your ASP is basically healthy and the Aspie Way still hasn’t worked, there are other factors to consider.

First and most important: the Aspie Way is a way of life, not something to “try” here and there. It requires consistency and repetition and patience. For my ASH, it took six months for his meds to start working, as compared to the 90 days the same meds take for an NT. During this six month period, I was learning to change. I slipped up *a lot.* I did not see results until I had truly changed and could consistently keep things low stress with my ASP. It really didn’t take him that long to start trusting me once I had really changed. But when I was full of doubt and was bouncing in and out of depression and in and out of the Aspie way, there was no basis for the trust required for the Aspie Way to work. For ASP to trust me, I had to be trustworthy, and the occasional low-stress conversation, alternating with upsetting ones, just didn’t cut it. The low stress environment had to be the primary environment for a few weeks before I started to see the benefits.

Another situation that could make the Aspie Way difficult, if not impossible, would be if you are in a long distance relationship and have little contact with each other. For many Aspies, “Out of sight is out of mind.” Let’s face it, Aspies are visual and are quite focused on the risk/reward ratio of any situation. If he hardly sees you, if you’re not there to offer him the support and love and compassion he needs, and if his contact with you is risky (in other words, sometimes he’s gets a weepy, complaining, high-stress you instead of the compassionate, accepting, loving you), chances are he will avoid contact with you and will simply build a new life for himself without you. If this has happened, there may be no way for you to build trust with him or the fresh start that is needed for the Aspie Way to work. I’m not saying you will definitely fail if you’re in a long distance relationship, but I am saying that it becomes crucial that you make sure every interaction with him is as low stress as possible. And you may not be able to do this. I don’t think I could have. I needed my few months of regular, daily practice before I could really change.

On the other hand, let’s look at a long distance relationship with your ASP from a more positive view: maybe having less contact could work in your favor. Maybe you’ll find that it’s easier for you to control yourself when you know it’s only for a short time on the phone or on Skype or however you connect. Then, once the contact is over, you can cry or yell or get support from a friend or otherwise work through your stressful emotions safely away from your ASP. If you approach it this way, your long distance relationship could be a blessing.I think it all depends on you and what you can do. Everyone is different.

Consistency is key. Be patient. Believe in yourself. If you can do this, I believe you can do the Aspie Way.


5 thoughts on “I Tried the Aspie Way, and it Didn’t Work!

  1. I don’t think we believe “out of sight, out of mind.” As an aspie, time and distance does not make me forget my friends or move on without them. I tend to think everything must be just fine with my long-distance friends because they haven’t called. Most people call when there is a crisis. A lapse in phone calls must mean that there have been no crisis and they are well. When we do talk again, I feel I can pick up right where I left off. I don’t need (nor do I want) daily interaction with certain friends.

    An aspie friend once told me “Though we crave friendship, we crave it based on a lifetime…the kind of people whom we can go years without speaking to but in an instant of crisis we know we can call on each other for anything.” Unfortunately most neuro-typical people do not operate this way. They want daily interactions. Phone calls. Texts. Constant feedback. This type of friendship can be exhausting for an aspie. When we don’t provide that constant stream of attention, people wrongfully assume we don’t care when really, we care deeply. We simply don’t have the capacity for non-stop interaction.

  2. Hello. I am hoping to get some feedback on my current situation. My husband told me we were having problems a few months ago. He was very upset with me because he said he had asked me for counseling 13 times before I agreed but I had no clue and can’t even remember more than one or two times. Anyway he has held this against me throughout our unraveling over the last 2 months and things have progressively gotten worse. He kept pulling farther and farther away from me. At first it was emotional and involved him spending more time with his friends than with me. Then it became physical in that he has basically moved out of our house and is staying with his friend. He has been there for the last 3 weeks. At first I was a complete mess and didn’t understand at all why he was acting this way. Why was he completely abandoning me? Why can’t he let anything go when I apologize or try to explain my side of things? I realized a few days ago in my search for answers that his actions are textbook aspergers characteristics. I remembered him mentioning being mild aspergers in the past but I never really thought anything of it because we were not having any problems. This realization has given me a whole new perspective on the situation at hand. I am now trying to be more kind, patient, understanding, and as stress free as I can be with him. My worry is that since he is not living At home he will just build a life without me. We still talk everyday so it’s not a matter of forgetting me, but I am wondering if you have any advice for how to handle this and get him to come back home so we don’t completely drift apart. Right now I am trying to rebuild his trust and make him understand I want to be calm and understanding. I can only do so much through text messaging though. We are in separate counseling with the same counselor and I am hoping to get him to agree to go to a couples session where I can bring some of this up in a more “safe” environment. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks.

    1. NTwife,

      I am so sorry that I didn’t respond to this when you wrote it. I had messed up my blog settings and didn’t know I had any comments.

      How are things now? Have you been to counseling? Has it worked?

      My advice to you would be to keep up the good work! Be patient, and you should eventually see results.

      Even by text, he should be able to tell a difference in how you’re treating him. I recommend communicating by text or email when things are tough. ASP can’t read your non-verbal communication very well anyway, and writing gives him time to process and think about what he wants to say. Plus he can’t tell if you’re angry or upset, as long as you choose your words carefully. It’s much easier than in person communication.

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