hackrabbit @ : Introduction
"Hi, my name is (deleted for privacy) and I'm a Neurotypical. In fact most of my friends are NT's. My family has only quite recently become aware of my condition. But fortunately they support me in this."
Finding out you are an NT never is easy. But luckily there are those who know what it is like. With whom you can share thoughts and ideas on how to cope with this situation and how to handle its common symptoms.
In an effort to support those who are NT, have an NT relative or know an NT this community has been founded. Feel free to exchange thoughts and anecdotes. If you have helpful hints or tips on how to get the most out of your predicament post them here.
And remember: you are not alone.
Affective Deprivation Disorder
I am the wife of a man recently diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS). I was reaching out for support and information for myself when I came upon a description of Affective Deprivation Disorder (AfDD). When I saw those words my heart leapt – resonance – someone has put a name to what I have been feeling for many years.
It feels like I have no more reserves for tolerating a lack of resonance, understanding, and empathetic validation. I feel depleted and cannot tolerate sharing my feelings and having them unacknowledged or invalidated. I have become COMPLETELY DEPLETED (CD).
In this CD state I have been reaching out for help, information and empathetic validation. The first link I clicked on responded with “Error 401 file not found.” In effect - affective deprivation!
So I looked at some other sites. Most of them are hostile towards those suffering from AfDD because it has been associated with AS and the Aspies are fighting back! More affective deprivation (with a little abuse thrown in for good measure).
I went to my therapist after a week of emotional devastation over my husband’s diagnosis – I shared how I saw the situation as hopeless. She responded, “I Disagree.” !!!
For the record, it feels like a hopeless diagnosis FOR ME god damn it!
And YES I am suffering from AfDD – and I don’t give a FUCK who doesn’t agree. You see, now I’m not reaching out for anymore god dammed help. I’m writing my own fucking article on my own fucking disorder in order to help MYSELF. So fuck all of you. Fuck you all to fucking hell!
AfDD can lead to depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, apathy, isolation and feelings of exhaustion and emptiness. It occurs when one’s feelings are unreciprocated and/or invalidated over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again.
Gee, I’m feeling a little better. Thank you Me, for understanding and validating my feelings!
Many wives of AS husbands (we are also known as NT’s, i.e. neurotypicals, normal people married to people with AS). You see, we’re nothing special, just typical people married to “special” people who do not return our warmth, expressed feelings of love and encouragement. In return for loving deeply and completely from the bottom of our hearts, we receive… nothing at all – or perhaps some good old fashioned invalidation from our therapists (the people we fucking PAY for a little empathetic validation).
I say to those of you who are also suffering from AfDD, your feelings are valid, reasonable, and completely understandable! You matter. Your feelings matter. You deserve love, warmth, and empathetic validation. Your lives are not “typical,” they are tragic, and your efforts to persevere, one day at a time, are nothing short of heroic.
I tried to join an online support group for the wives of those with AS. The link brought me to an error message: File Not Found. I emailed the organizer who did RESPOND! She was kind enough to refer me to some books and articles and to let me know that the link to the online support group should be fixed soon! Gee, thanks! At least I got a crumb!
I have lived my life on crumbs. But, at present, I am starving and unable to sustain myself on crumbs. Sorry!
So now, I say to you and to MYSELF – find a therapist who offers EMPATHY. Pay them to feed you empathetic validation. If they blow it – FIRE their asses. If you can’t find ANYONE and/or can’t AFFORD a therapist who can and will provide this, well I guess you’re going to have to provide it to yourself! By definition empathy comes from an “other” so this is impossible. But let’s give it a shot, shall we?