Unfortunately, in modern times, many marriages end in divorce or separation. This statistic rises even higher when you mix in an autistic child. No matter how loving and understanding you both may be towards your child, the truth is that autism is a very difficult matter, and strain on the marriage is not uncommon. By trying to stay positive about your situation, and by working to keep your marriage healthy, you and your spouse can avoid marital problems and hopefully survive the trying times of raising an autistic child.
Ask yourself—why did I marry my husband or wife? When you ask this question often, you begin to focus more on the good of your marriage, as opposed to the strains on your marriage. Raising children within itself can be stressful, now add an autistic child into the midst. Often times when we are stressed, we have the tendency to project our frustrations on others—typically those closest to us. This projection may be onto a spouse, a child, or another loved one.
Instead of focusing on the frustrations, you and your spouse need to take some time to enjoy one another the way you did at the beginning of the relationship. This may require spending some time away from your child. You will need this “adult” breaks every once in a while, so make sure you have a strong support system and reliable friends or family who can properly tend to your child during times such as these.
Do not attempt this journey alone, work together with your spouse to help your child, instead of fighting with one another. It is possible that your ideas will differ, but it is not the end of the world. Work toward a unified front for the sake of your child and your marriage. Be prepared to compromise and always seek professional consultations before making any medical decisions for your child. Remember that you are giving your child the best opportunities available to them when you work together.
Lastly, seek help when you need it. Part of any successful marriage is spending some time apart to focus on individual needs, and it is no different when you have an autistic child. However, if you find that you and your spouse are not happy unless you are spending time alone, it is time to reevaluate the situation. A family or marriage counselor can help you and your spouse get back on the right track to a happy life together. It might also be beneficial to meet other couples raising autistic children. Be Blessed. Be Whole. Be You.