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Old 22nd October 2009, 08:24 AM   #1
Brotan
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Pray for wisdom please

I need some help. My husband and I have now been back together for just over 6 months after a long separation. My husband has been without a job for 16 months now. He is highly qualified and applies for numerous jobs every week yet I do not feel that he really wants a job or else he is scared of working. The reason I say this is that yesterday, for the first time since I have been back with him he got offered a job and he turned it down because it started today. He looks after my daughter in the morning and said he couldna't just dump her, but he knows I would have been able to take her to work with me and look after her there for a few days til we could get her into a creche.

I want another baby and apparently so does he, but we have an agreement that until he gets a job and we pay off some of our debt then I cannot have one. Additionally we agreed that for five months I would not shout or swear at him and that if I did the agreement would extend by an additional two weeks. I shouted at him this morning - he has not been talking to me and every time I try to bring up something that upsets me without shouting he says: we are not having this discussion now, I don't want to talk about that now - this has been happening more and more lately so today I shouted because he has been cutting me off every time I speak normally and won't hear me. Anyway, why does it matter if I shout if I won't be able to have a baby anyway because he is refusing to get a job? I know I am supposed not to shout to be a good wife and support him and so on, but isn't he supposed to love his wife and provide for her?

My husband seems to think that people should come looking for him and offering him a job - is this normal for a guy to think this? Hundreds and thousands of people are without a job - why would they come looking for a man who hasn't worked in 16 months. Why does he say: They didn't phone me back so they didn't want me? Surely then he didn't want the job because he didn't phone them back? But he doesn't see that and I haven't dared to say it to him.

I am under enormous pressure and becoming thoroughly depressed. I believe that my husband is also depressed as he barely leaves the house and has been keeping more and more to himself. Please will you pray that I will have the wisdom to handle this better than I have been and that God will show me somehow what to do because I cannot carry on like this and I don't think my husband can either. And I went back to hm believeing God would take care of us, but he seems to be deserting us or else perhaps we've run away again... I don't know.
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Old 22nd October 2009, 07:58 PM   #2
Raymond
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

I think you are right Brotan. Your husband will certainly not get a job the way he is behaving. We are in a recession after all.

I think the agreement you have that you don't have a baby unless you stop shouting and swearing is wrong. That is an unhealthy agreement to have I think. Sounds more like blackmail and puts a wrong pressure on you. Part of the fruit of the spirit which is in you is self control. That will come more and more as you look to Him and should be enough to get the victory over your temperment.

You obviously have to talk with him about the desire to have a baby in the sense that he is dragging his feet in getting a job which in turn affects the outcome. I think I remember saying to you just to have the baby in faith regardless but obviously you cannot do this if he is not in agreement.

Yes you should be encouraging him and supporting him in the things you see are good but thats all you can do really. If he is not being who he should be you cannot tell him to be by having a go at him. You have to encourage the good that is there and it will grow. I know it's difficult but when one has phrases like he or she ought to it doesn't really go anywhere. We are only responsible for our own behaviour. It would be easy to build up a case against him where your friends will agree but we are not called to judge or condemn our spouses. I'm convinced that a woman's encouragement and being for her man will change him long term.

You sound as if you are getting discouraged a bit Brotan and I will certainly pray that God lifts you up and also gives you the wisdom that you need. No he hasn't deserted you. He has already given his promise concerning that.

Try and get good fellowship if you are not already. That does help.

Raymond
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Old 25th October 2009, 01:00 AM   #3
JWD
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Hi Brotan,

It sound to me like your husband has lost his confidence being out of work so long. I know it is far from ideal but maybe he could look for something part time until he gets back in the swing of things?

Anyway, I will say a prayer for you.
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Old 25th October 2009, 01:41 AM   #4
Ageing Grace
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Dear Brotan,

Please don't feel bad about shouting. You've done wonders in altering your temper, and sometimes frustration reaches a pitch where shouting is the healthiest outlet!

Of course, you're not a bit wrong in your evaluation of the job market. Employers don't even bother to reply these days; if you don't chase them up you'll never hear back. To be offered work without running after the offer is a real bonus in this climate, and it's not totally rational on your husband's part to reject the compliment.

You might need to bear in mind that your husband, having Asperger's, is prone to inflated self-esteem and an imperfect sense of consequentiality. You can see how this combination may hamper a person looking for employment after being out of work for some time, under present conditions. It's a pain, but there it is. As soon as he comprehends the actual situation, he will probably deal with it very swiftly & effectively. I understand that temper outbursts can be very upsetting for him - but on this occasion, it may well trigger him to figure it out ... and, therefore, be the best thing you could have done! Maybe not deliberately, but still.

You've had lovely replies from Raymond and JWD. I agree with both of them. This is just my two-penn'orth. You're often in my thoughts, Brotan. I wish you the wisdom and support you need, and of course the wise assistance of your higher power

Much love,
AG

Last edited by Ageing Grace; 25th October 2009 at 01:54 AM.
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Old 27th October 2009, 01:25 PM   #5
Raymond
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

I didn't know that H had Aspergers AG. Do you think once he comprehends the situation he will get cracking?

Raymond
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Old 27th October 2009, 02:46 PM   #6
Ageing Grace
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

One of the real experts might be able to answer in more detail, Raymond. When Jon was out of work, he fiddled around for a while - and then got himself a decent job in less than a week (different market then, of course). I have seen lots of others saying the same thing in Asperger forums. Aspies have difficulty adapting to change.

AG
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Old 27th October 2009, 03:11 PM   #7
Ageing Grace
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Just a thought, Brotan - have you tried writing to him about this?
Helen communicates with her son by text and MSN (they're in the same house).

AG x
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Old 28th October 2009, 07:11 AM   #8
Brotan
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

The job did phone back and he is supposed to start tomorrow - it is only work for two days, but right now anything will help. It is a bit weird though as he is still not 100% sure that he must go in tomorrow... is getting a job always this unclear or is it my husband who isn't asking the right questions or is he trying to have an escape? I don't know, but I really hope he does go and work tomorrow because even if it is only for two days it has to help financially and to give him some more confidence.

He is still doing part time work from home, but it is not nearly enough - again better than doing nothing, but he probably only works a few days a month at most.

We have recovered somewhat from me yelling at him (at least I didn't swear or tell him I hate him) and he has started shwoing me that he does get that I am depressed and very stressed - my own work the boss left to o overseas and so I am having to run the business alone (there should be a manager but he is almost never around) and I have found this very stressful - its not as though I got an increase either. I have needed some support - I think my husband is getting that some now which I appreciate.

"I'm convinced that a woman's encouragement and being for her man will change him long term."
While I agree with this it is incredibly hard for me to support him and encourage him when I am taking the strain for what I believe he should be doing (providing for us) I do try to encourage him and look at what he has done when he works from home and give him space and tell him he's done a good job when he has, but I feel he thinks I should have supported his decision to say he was not available for the job the next day and that is something I cannot have done and I will not be able to if he does it again.

Yes, I am getting discouraged. I know that God is not supposed to give us something we cannot handle, but it seems like I need a break now - something to go right.
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Old 29th October 2009, 01:20 PM   #9
Raymond
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

I didn't know your husband was Asperger which explains things a little. AG seems to know a lot about it. You are right not to back up his reticence to work. It is a difficult climate just now and hopefully our faith will increase to handle the way things seem to be going.

You are doing all you can Brotan. I know that Aspergers find some jobs difficult but when they get the jobs that suit them they are usually very good at them. I don't think they get on in relational type jobs but are very good at practical and technical things including figures. There ought to be an agency just for them maybe.

The muddle about the job could be that he is reticent to ask questions to clarify. Maybe he thinks everything should happen in a logical way but it doesn't always work out like that.

You seem to have been lumbered with the company on your own which must put you under a lot of pressure. Another area where you need His strength. Seems like bad management. Make sure you don't work overtime but do your best while you are there. Get enough leisure and enough sleep if you can. You need to be practical as well as spiritual.


Will pray.
Raymond
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Old 2nd November 2009, 01:42 AM   #10
A123
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Some things that may help in the communication with someone on the Autism spectrum- you may have heard all of this, but if someone reads the thread and learns one thing than my post was worth it!

Be very clear and use as little emotion as possible. It is very hard for people with ASD to process or even perceive non verbal cues expecially facial expressions... and tone is hard for them too... so what happens when we get excited, upset, or just plain riled up??? We tend to engage in those things that the ASD person cant understand... and we can overstimulate them-more on that next

Overstimulation is a BIG problem in the ASD population. sometimes it can be other people, colors, temperature, noise, light, or anything else for that individual... think of what overstimulation does for a young baby... it effectively makes them shut down because they just cant process anymore. Know your partners trigger... he may be able to help you identify these and when you need to talk about something or enjoy an experience... you can take steps to cut back on these factors.

A few people mentioned writing to a spouse/child with aspergers. this is due to the communication being more concrete. You still may have to make sure that your writing is done in a clear, consice manner that tells exactly what you are meaning and exactly what you want from the ASD person.

The job situation in this case was made a TON more understandable when I found that the H has aspergers... He probably equated his important role as taking care of the child... and so when he was offered the job, it wasn't even a question... CONCRETE thinkers... not really good at seeing outside the box (at least not the non ASD box!)

Brotan do you notice that when you yell that your husband does any "stimming behaviors"? that may give you a clue that he is unable to process the information and this may help you curb your need to blow up... look for any repetitive motions... I am sure you are familiar with this, but for someone else reading this, you may see a bouncing, rocking, leg twitching, finger flicking, pencil flicking, lip licking, eye rolling, pinching...
--- you may be able to take this into account and help your husband get the sensorimotor stimulation that he needs and then be able to talk with him better. I worked with many ASD children and teens and have done a lot of research on the subject. Many times just to get them to work in school we had to take care of those needs first. Some children had a sensory bag that they carried with them.. it included for some, a weighted vest (strong, deep hugs work too - I used to have to wrap a kid that I worked with up in a big blanket when he melted down... he needed the TIGHT swaddling just to come down from a blow up), other items included stress balls, putty, items that lit up and or blinked, one child likes fragrances and so had some esential oil vials to smell and that helped.

Remember that an ASD person is not intentionally doing this and needs to understand the societal norm. This can come about by talking with others about what is expected. another really useful trick is what are called social stories. these are used to prepare a person for an event that they may not react the best to. in these stories (think role playing verses novel) the person gets to read or hear how they should act in certain instances. Brotan if your husband had his job before his long break for a long time and never had to do this before he may just need to be primed to have the "correct" answer for his employers.

I also dealt with the issue of transitions with all children that I worked with but in particular with the ASD population... You need to make sure that a person with ASD is prepared to shift gears before they are required to change from one activity to another but also from one mind set to another. if not, youll just wind up with a big messy broken up transmission! I like funny metaphors sorry but this can be done similarly to a child... you can have frank conversations like ok hunny I know that you have been caring for our child for a long time now, but soon you will be going back to work outside of the home... or I want to let you know that in 20 minutes I would like to speak to you regarding... fill in the blank and remind again at 10 and 5 minutes so the person is not asked to shift before they are ready... think of asking your kid to leave the playground... do you just say hey lets go now... or do you say ok hunny you have 10 more minutes and the countdown begins... we do this because little kids don't handle transitions well and the current activity may be just as engaging for the ASD mind as the playground for a little one.

It has been a while since I have worked with the ASD population so I am likely forgetting many things. however if anyone has any questions they can feel free to contact me and I will do my best to provide information from my experience, education, and research. I also may be able to provide resource information for people if I am not able to give all that is desired...

Hope this helps some...Amber
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Old 3rd November 2009, 12:32 PM   #11
Helen_uk
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

I find Paul takes direction far more easily if I ask him in writing because it gives him time to think about it.

I can relate to Brotan's problem because I've spent the last 20 years of my ( Paul's life span ! )life with arrangements in total confusion if I've left it up to him. He misunderstands sometimes when issued with a task ( such as at school ) , NEVER asks for explanations and then gets very irate at not knowing what he was supposed to do... and NOTHING I've tried has altered that , short of finding out for myself . That feels like " checking up " on him though and he then feels I don't trust him ... We had numerous " talks " about this whilst he was going through the education system and Paul was lucky enough to attend a brilliant mainstream senior school as a statemented pupil which had good pastoral care and SEN support. We would sit down with them every 3 months, sort out what he needed and devise a " plan of action " but inevitably Paul felt unable to ask for help when needed or even to indicate he needed help... sometimes he didn't even KNOW he needed help so the teaching assistants really had their work cut out, bless 'em they did far more than they were paid to do and Paul came out of school with GCSE's and A levels , a joint achievement from him, myself and the school who allowed him to be different and were sympathetic to his needs.

This and the excellent child and adolescent mental health centre in Coventry have meant that Paul's life has been a little easier than had we lived in in some districts in the UK , support for people with ASD's is still very hit and miss.

Teaching coping strategies from an early age seems to be the way to go and enables adults with ASD's and their carers or support system to understand better the social part of life which is so essential for holding down jobs or having relationships. Even with all the support we've had , life is rarely easy with Paul and I still worry for his future . Learning how to read between the lines is a good skill to have when dealing with people with ASD's . I think you do need to be firm though ( or they will easily take over your life , their lack of empathetic skills can make them quite self centred at times ) oh yes... and you need patience in abundance :-)

Helen
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Old 10th November 2009, 07:44 AM   #12
Brotan
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Thanks for the advice. It is interesting to read some of what you have written about Aspergers - it has never been diagnosed in my husband to be honest, but most of the signs are there. He definitely does like to know what is coming - up to wanting a list of what we are going to eat every day of the week whether he or I am cooking it. The other day I suggested checking our routine once a month - he likes to have set things to do every day of the week but with time this slips or we need to adjust it. I actually can't stand such a strict routine which is why if we have one then it needs to be changed for me every month and he was quite happy with this suggestion. The strictness to which he follows these routines drives me crazy.

Anyway, still no job for him and still a huge amount of pressure at mine. I have become seriously depressed lately and will probably have to go back onto medication. I am losing faith in a lot of things right now, am exceptionally anxious all the time and am not sleeping well at night even on traquillisers. Rich Mullins sings a song I am relating to a lot lately - "I don't know how you're leading me unless you led me here where I am lost enough to let myself be led" only I am still just wandering aimlessly and don't feel like anyone is leading. I really don't know what to do anymore.
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Old 10th November 2009, 09:00 AM   #13
Raymond
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Oh dear. Can you not think of anything good that God is doing for you Brotan? Sometimes the psalms sound like you do then the writer comes out of it and sees the good that God has done, usually ending up in thanking and praising God. Look at the thread about giving thanks. We all have a lot to thank God for. Has he not promised to meet all our needs? Sometimes praise and thanksgiving can open doors. If nothing else it will lift us up.

Raymond
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Old 10th November 2009, 10:16 AM   #14
jellybean28
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Good advice from Raymond Broton,

Staying with a very rigid routine would be difficult for anyone. Would it be possible that you could have one day a fortnight (or whatever you can work with) where you take the time out for yourself, without any routine.
You get up spend the day doing whatever you feel like, visiting friends, wandering around the shops etc. Make sure for that day you have a routine set in place for your husband. Explain that you need this time to recharge.

It must be difficult for you Broton, and you need to be comended for trying to make things work, but you still need to take time to look after yourself, doing things that make you happy.

Have a look at some of the threads here, you will find some good advice. The gratitude thread I started has given me so much joy as I read what others have written and shared. Try and listen to more uplifting songs, one of my favourites is Helen Reddy's "I am woman" old I know, but oh so empowering.
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Old 10th November 2009, 12:59 PM   #15
Raymond
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Re: Pray for wisdom please

Good practical advice there Brotan that Jellybean is giving. One day off a fortnight (or even a week) sounds good. It may have to be a weekend if they can't let you go at work or if there are financial retraints. One day off in seven is a good pattern and we all need it to rest and recharge our batteries whatever that turns out to be.

Whatever you do don't work overtime. Keep that sacrosanct. Some of these inefficient companies can swallow you up if you let them. Your health comes first, otherwise you will be no good for anything.

Remember what I said about Him giving us the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Try and use it.

Raymond
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