We are complex people. We will continue to grow, change, and learn about ourselves and our spouses throughout our lives.
And sometimes, as you come to see the limitations of your spouse, disappointment can set in.
Your desires may be legitimate. For example, you want your spouse to empathize with you, care about your feelings, and consistently value and respect you.
If your spouse has traits of high functioning autism (HFA, formerly called Asperger's syndrome), he or she may seem cold, callous, and indifferent to you. This type of relationship can feel like emotional abuse and neglect. However, the reason you are feeling this matters.
A person with HFA can also be abusive. So, how can you tell the difference?
Is your HFA spouse be willing to seek a diagnosis? (Please note, even the diagnosis of HFA has a subjective quality to it. Even without meeting the full criteria for HFA, a person can have enough traits to make a long term relationship feel very difficult).
And when he learns he has hurt you, does he show remorse that he hurt you? Does he care and do his best to learn how to treat you better?
If your spouse has traits of HFA, your relationship can become healthy and satisfying enough with education and help from a counselor who understands how to work with these dynamics. Yes, you will feel some disappointment that your spouse cannot read your emotions or know how to easily have back and forth conversation. But you are not dealing with a destructive spouse. You can learn to give and receive love in a new way that works for your relationship.
And sometimes, we are disappointed because we expect too much of marriage.
Jerry McGuire"s "You complete me" mindset will certainly lead to disappointment.
If we are not whole and happy individuals, marriage will never fill that void. If we seek our ultimate fulfillment and meaning in our marriages, disappointment is guaranteed.