Whose Planet Is It Anyway?

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Maxine Aston's Cassandra Disorder Scam

Have you ever thought about how much fun it would be to invent a bogus disorder and to rake in the money from persuading gullible people that they were in dire need of your expertise and therapy? No, me neither. Most of us are ethical enough so that we would never consider such a thing. But Maxine Aston, notorious inventor of "Cassandra Affective Deprivation Disorder," evidently has no such qualms.

She was working as a marriage and relationship counselor in the late 1990s when she became aware of the new autism spectrum diagnostic categories and started thinking about how she could exploit that opportunity. There was just one little obstacle in the way of her scheming, which was her lack of autism-related experience. So she cooked up a clever strategy: Provide services to couples in which one partner had an Asperger diagnosis, and then leverage that experience into book contracts and a skillfully crafted public image as an Asperger expert.

Unfortunately, she didn't stop there. She also identified another potentially lucrative market: Women who recently had divorced or were divorcing Aspie husbands, and who would lap up a sympathetic counselor's assurances that they were not to blame for the divorce because autistic men were neurologically defective and unfit for marriage. To cover this blatantly unethical prejudice with a veneer of respectability, Aston proceeded to create "Cassandra Affective Deprivation Disorder," which she defined as a depressive condition caused by being in a relationship with an autistic person.

This so-called "disorder" has no medical or scientific legitimacy whatsoever. No professional association has recognized it, and there are no peer-reviewed studies of it. Aston lifted the "symptoms" straight out of the diagnostic criteria for Seasonal Affective Disorder. Although she maintains what she calls a research page on her website (maxineaston.co.uk/research), it contains only simple questionnaires that show no indication of compliance with institutional review procedures. Aston clearly lacks experience conducting formal research studies in an academic setting and is grossly unqualified to hold herself out as a psychological scientist.

Her shameless peddling of pseudoscientific rubbish and fleecing of emotionally vulnerable divorcees by purporting to diagnose them with a nonexistent disorder would be bad enough in itself, but that's not all. Aston has descended even farther into the depths of the ethical abyss through her long-term association with the Massachusetts hate group FAAAS, which repeatedly has urged social workers and family court judges to discriminate against autistic parents in child custody proceedings. Aston had full knowledge of this despicable agenda from the start, and she proudly touts her association with FAAAS on her website.

Although she asserts that as a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, she abides by its code of ethics and professional conduct, a quick look at BACP's ethical code suggests otherwise. Knowingly inciting disability prejudice and discrimination clearly violates BACP's prohibition against bias:


"Practitioners should not allow their professional relationships with clients to be prejudiced by any personal views they may hold about lifestyle, gender, age, disability, race, sexual orientation, beliefs or culture."


Tossing together a few half-baked questionnaires, which was apparently done with complete disregard for the institutional review process and the rights of the study subjects, can hardly be said to meet BACP's requirement of conducting sound research:


"All research should be undertaken with rigorous attentiveness to the quality and integrity both of the research itself and of the dissemination of the results of the research."


And I won't even bother to list all the ethical rules violated by concocting and profiting from a phony disorder, as that might take all day. Frankly, I find it quite astounding that Maxine Aston hasn't yet been brought up on unprofessional conduct charges.

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102 Comments:

  • I'll start digging and see if I can put a formal complaint together, here in the UK.

    By Blogger Socrates, at 12:16 PM  

  • Socrates, first point of call would be the organisation named in ABFH's article. Second would be the British Psychological Society, who have a Division of Counselling Psychology (separate from the Division of Clinical Psychology). The reason for this is that it would make it clear to the BPS what a practitioner asserting a BACP credential is doing, and highlighting that it may be happening within its ranks too.

    It could also stimulate inter-organisational discussion on the practice of inventing disorders to maximise profit.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 1:07 PM  

  • Socrates, if you want to put together a complaint, you would have a stronger case if you can find people who have actually had Maxine Aston as a therapist and would be willing to testify that they have been harmed by her therapy.

    And why is this called 'Cassandra Disorder' anyway? In Greek mythology, Cassandra was a woman who made prophecies that nobody believed. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassandra.

    By Blogger R. Gerald Lovejoy, at 1:55 PM  

  • I've had a couple of hours to go through the websites. I think her Achillies Heal maybe the research project. But there's more than one way to skin a cat... Watch the skies...

    By Blogger Socrates, at 3:31 PM  

  • Nice one and thanks to Socrates for having a shot at the complaint process. This is a scam, pure and simple and it's past times that she has to answer for it.

    By Blogger Alyric, at 5:30 PM  

  • It's called Cassandra Syndrome because supposedly no one believes the pain you are experiencing as a "victim" of this disordet

    By Anonymous meep, at 8:28 PM  

  • Randomly lurking the autism hub for the heck of it, I ran into this article...

    dang.

    My boyfriend owns Maxine Aston's "Aspergers In Love." Some of the stuff she said makes sense - my Aspie(ish?) bf and I skimmed through it once and talked about which points we agreed or disagreed with. I've wondered, though, if many of them aren't just normal man/woman power struggles.

    I've heard bad things about Aston from other pro-liberty autistics before, that weren't so obvious to me from what I've read of "Aspergers In Love." (But maybe I'm just numb to dehumanization.) This is the worst I've heard.

    And I don't think it makes much sense. Not from my experience in an NT woman/AS man relationship, anyway. Emotional deprivation? Really? My boyfriend has gotten me in touch with positive emotions I was rarely in touch with before. I seriously doubt I'll be depressed if we break up, and if I am, it probably won't be because he was a bad boyfriend, but because he was a good one and I miss him.

    By Anonymous formerly_reform_normal, at 10:39 PM  

  • Perhaps she could "cure" them with crystal therapy, and thus cash in on New Age pseudo-science, too?

    By Blogger Joeymom, at 10:41 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 7:12 AM  

  • (Edited to include specific comments and typo corrections: had my daughter distracting me whilst typing)

    Very interesting connection she has with the Slater-Walkers... my ex-wife and I read that book of theirs and were appalled at the attitudes contained in it. Basically, the Aspie partner had to to all the changing, and didn't really have that worthy a viewpoint.

    We were disgusted at G's parts in the book and her expectations compared to the expectations that C was allowed to have of the relationship.

    I wonder how much of Maxine is in those.

    I notice that her MSc is in Health Psychology. This is an area of psychology in which one is expected to take a more integrated approach to understanding an issue faced by a client: the bio-psycho-social approach, as it is known. It is clear that she does not use this approach in helping couples in which one partner is an Aspie to understand the situations their in. Her emphasis being that the Aspie is the one most likely to be at fault (even if she does not always verbalise this directly) can't be seen as using the approach in her work.

    On top of this, the MSc in Health Psychology is not really a qualification for doing much of the work she does through her site: I think particularly of the diagnostic service...

    Her research: "I am particularly interested in the affect on the mental and physical health that the relationship might have on either partner."

    Someone's already pointed out the ethical issues here, so I won't go into those; except to say that, at no place on her site, does it mention that she is conducting this research for a research degree. Her questionnaire is not of a standard that I would expect for someone whose M. Sc. contains training on how to develop tools for investigation: her rubrics are not clear (e. g., "IN THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS PLEASE DELETE THOSE THAT ARE NOT APPLICABLE" - delete what? the questions or the response options?); the questions seem to be 'leading' (such as: "In retrospect and with the knowledge you have now, would you still have had a relationship with your partner?"); the questions are very open-ended and will give rise to responses that would be extremely difficult to code reliably; given that there are specific communication difficulties associated with being Asperger-autistic, the open-ended questions on the pro-forma meant for the Aspie partner will definitely lead to a paucity of high-quality information on that partner's experience of the relationship. These are just a few issues I have (as a supervisor, supervising a student researching her thesis for her M. Ed. degree) - I can honestly say that I would have serious reservations about allowing Aston's project to go ahead with that questionnaire, as it is.

    Her published articles list does not contain one single peer-reviewed reference.

    I'm not happy with what I've seen there.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 7:34 AM  

  • Michael Savage is not the only one who says the same thing about Asperger's that you are saying about CAD.

    Complain all you want, but others have as much right to their point of view as you do about yours.

    David Andrews has dubious credentials.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:55 PM  

  • Possibly the most obvious and imbecilic lurker (JBJr): "David Andrews has dubious credentials."

    What? Master of Education from the University of Birmingham is dubious? Get a fucking life, John, you dumb sod! (JBJr says he has three degrees, one of which was a major in psychology; then I find that it's two and the bachelor degree wasn't a major in psychology after all, but contained the one compulsory social science course as a psychology module; he also says he was a US navy captain).

    Hmm... credentials? I can - and have - demonstrated mine.

    Rumbled you, John; now do us all a favour: STFU.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 2:36 PM  

  • meep said...

    It's called Cassandra Syndrome because supposedly no one believes the pain you are experiencing as a "victim" of this disorder.

    Perhaps, but people seem to be all too willing to believe these "victims" when they are quoted in self-help books...

    By Blogger R. Gerald Lovejoy, at 2:38 PM  

  • David: The anonymous commenter is not JBjr, but instead came from FAAAS. She probably doesn't know anything at all about your credentials.

    Socrates: Thanks for having a go at the complaint process, and please let me know what develops.

    By Blogger abfh, at 3:27 PM  

  • ABFH: "David: The anonymous commenter is not JBjr, but instead came from FAAAS. She probably doesn't know anything at all about your credentials."

    Thanks for the information. Clearly, they are studying his form... looks like shit breeds shit, no?

    Whoever it is, though... she bloody knows about them now. Says a lot about FAAAS (pronounced F-arse), doesn't it, when they can't find their own way to shoot a messenger and have to borrow one from America's most well-known imbecile, no?

    Again, ABFH, thank you for the information.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 3:41 PM  

  • Honestly, if you ask *anyone* going through the divorce "In retrospect and with the knowledge you have now, would you still have had a relationship with your partner?"
    what answer do you expect to get?

    By Anonymous Tara, at 3:52 PM  

  • I think the notion that AS people create individual personality or affective disorder in partners was an older, now obsolete version of CADD. The newer thinking -sometimes shortened to Affective Deprivation Disorder- is based on a relational/interactional along the lines of 'it takes two to tango'. this AfDD model tells that it is not the partner who has become disordered, but the relationship. So the word Disorder now refers not to an individual disorder (now obsolete) but to what the APA call 'Relational Disorder'.

    This sounds much more reasonable to me in comparison with the old blame model. It makes BOTH partners work on the problem if one arises.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:15 PM  

  • Tara: "Honestly, if you ask *anyone* going through the divorce "In retrospect and with the knowledge you have now, would you still have had a relationship with your partner?"
    what answer do you expect to get?"

    Exactly my point...

    Loaded question.

    Aston's not very good at what she claims to do.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 7:53 PM  

  • Regardless of the benefits and failings of the CADD concept, to be fair to Maxine Aston Im inclined to say the leading post (by abfh above) about her is basically fabricated B/S with a big helping of hyperbole. From what I can see this raving about her scheming and scamming of vulnerable people for money is and *fantasy*. Its a conjecture. Further, such fantasies about her reveal a spiteful and mean-spirited imagination.

    Just another perspective ;-)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:19 AM  

  • (made a typo)

    From what I can see this raving about her scheming and scamming of vulnerable people for money is a *fantasy*. Its a conjecture. Further, such fantasies about her reveal a spiteful and mean-spirited imagination.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:30 AM  

  • Anon, go ahead and prove your assertion.

    Aston has offered not a single piece of peer-reviewed evidence of the existence of this 'disorder'. She is on record as pointing the finger at the Aspie partner in (at least almost) every relationship breakdown she's had any counselling involement in. Her history is that she is prone to blaming the Aspie rather than exmining the situaton from a systemic point of view (which - speaking as anm educational psychologist myself - I know is part of the training of professionals involved in education, psyhology and counselling practice). The burden of proof is on Aston's shoulders, regarding the 'existence' of this 'CADD' that she has invented, and she has failed to provide that proof.

    ABFH has demonstrated this lack of evidence in her post. There is no hyperbole involved in stating that "... (t)his so-called "disorder" has no medical or scientific legitimacy whatsoever. No professional association has recognized it, and there are no peer-reviewed studies of it...", and this is - from what I see - the crux of this matter. Any new diagnosable issue in mental health must be resesarched and essayed properly, in order for it to be demonstrated to be a reliable and valid concept that does not already explain a previously documented issue. Merely arguing by analogy on the basis of only what comes to light in counselling sessions (which is a heavily biased sampling method!) does not satisfy the requirement for a rigorous scientific study; and Aston knows this (has to: it's part of her training at both undergraduate level as well as at post-graduate level).

    Ergo, ABFH - in demonstrating this lack of evidence and of scientific rigour - is not resorting to hyperbole. But then, Anon, you already know this.

    Don't you?

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 4:26 AM  

  • Aston only needs to offer peer reveiwed "evidence" of CADD if she has in fact claimed that it IS peer reviewed. She hasn't made that claim, therefore your argument is faulty and phoney. To date she has proposed the disorder as fact.

    Maxine Aston created the parameters of this proposed disorder, and naturally if the detail is to be peer reviewed it will arrive hence the proposal, not prior.

    Heck, I could propose a new disorder myself -such as 'Deluded Wannabe Philosopher Disorder' (DWBD) which may refer to an actual empirical behavior. But until the proposed diagnostic detail is peer reviewed it is silly to complain that it has not peer review yet.

    I'm sure that in time we will see peer reviewed papers either for or against the legitimacy of the CADD proposition.

    Further, there is no evidence that Maxine Aston is motivated by making money by conning. That IS pure conjecture and hyperbole.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:38 AM  

  • In short CADD is a *proposed* disorder as MA has said many times in print. It may become more than simply a *proposed* disorder when it is peer reviewed and found to be empirically well argued.

    Saying MA's primary motivation is to make $$ is pure speculation and hyperbole.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:07 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 8:05 AM  

  • She's saying it exists! She hasn't demonstrated its existence and she's saying it exists!

    That's not proposing... that's stating! At no place on the page on which she describes it does she even mention that this is a 'proposed' disorder!!! She just goes on as if it's a proven clinical entity!

    Learn some science, please!

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 8:49 AM  

  • Yes, but she doesn't claim its a peer-reviewed fact, so it is not logical to suggest she has.

    You will find the word 'disorder' does not belong to the American Psychiatric Assn either, nor to any other organization. A disorder can be anything I claim to be a disorder. If MA had claimed that CADD was a DSM-IV disorder, or that it had been accepted by the APA, or even that it was a "formal" designation, then we could rightly accuse her of falsehood. But she has claimed non of those things, and to suggest she has done is merely to create a false and misleading argument.

    As far as I understand CADD is an informal designation for something MA believes, rightly or wrongly, to be a fact. Until she declares it a formal entity it is silly to judge it by those standards.

    All that said, I see some legitimacy to her reworked concept of CADD which is now described a relational disorder, rather than on a good-guy/bad-guy approach. The way this is headed it could prove very useful to intact couples who are going through rough patches, and I watch with interest its continued development.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:04 AM  

  • Anonymous said, “A disorder can be anything I claim to be a disorder.”

    You can make this argument as “anonymous,” but if you belong to a profession with a stated code of ethics, you are bound by that code when speaking as a member of the profession.

    Anonymous said, “As far as I understand CADD is an informal designation for something MA believes, rightly or wrongly, to be a fact. Until she declares it a formal entity it is silly to judge it by those standards.”

    Not really. “Information” about CADD is already being presented by Aston, Attwood and members of FAAAS at workshops and conferences aimed at counselors and other professionals. Are they being told that CADD is “something Maxine Aston believes,” or are they being instructed that NT partners suffer from the “emotional cruelty” of their AS partners. This is what the CADD brochure at the FAAAS website claims.

    Aston’s own website maintains that CADD can be worse than SAD because,“it is another human being, they probably love, who is responsible” for the suffering. This does not sound to me like CADD has been reframed as a “relational disorder,” in which partners would bear equal responsibility for the problems of the partnership.

    By Blogger Bev, at 11:00 AM  

  • I noticed you removed some posts. Were they posts that disagreed with you? I am curious as to what they said. Is it possible for you to unremove them?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:08 PM  

  • "Yes, but she doesn't claim its a peer-reviewed fact, so it is not logical to suggest she has."

    By failing to acknowledge that it isn't a formally recognised entity, and by acting as if is is, she is - by her actions - passing the notion of as if it is such an entity.

    "You will find the word 'disorder' does not belong to the American Psychiatric Assn either, nor to any other organization."

    Irrelevant point. In case you hadn't noticed, the term 'disorder' is not the issue under discussion here: (1) the invention of one, and (2) the argument by analogy of its existence, and (3) the pretence - by her actions - that it does exist

    "A disorder can be anything I claim to be a disorder."

    Not in this business, it can't... the professional bodies (BPS, BACP, APA and so on) and the official bodies whose job it is includes the standardisation of all concepts of atypicality in emotional, behavioural amd cognitive functioning (DSM and ICD) have specific protocols for acsertaining the validity and reliability of any asserted psychoatric/psychological issue, regardless of any issue of copyright on the word 'disorder'. For this reason, Aston is treading stupidly by doing what she's doing. If she was brought to the attention of the BACP, her lack of adherence to a proper research protocol in claiming that what she is claiming to exist actually exists.

    "If MA had claimed that CADD was a DSM-IV disorder, or that it had been accepted by the APA, or even that it was a 'formal' designation, then we could rightly accuse her of falsehood. But she has claimed non of those things, and to suggest she has done is merely to create a false and misleading argument."

    Wrong again. Even under the England & Wales legal system's Trade Descriptions Act 1068 (now liable itself to be replaced by legislation at member state level required by the EU Directive 2005/29/EC), she is 'applying a false description to good(s)' she is supplying (i. e., by passing off as something that formally exists but does not. It isn't just in what she does claim or say about it: it's also in what she doesn't say.

    "As far as I understand CADD is an informal designation for something MA believes, rightly or wrongly, to be a fact. Until she declares it a formal entity it is silly to judge it by those standards."

    Her belief in it is of no relevance to the matter: it is not formally accepted into the DSM or ICD frameworks for classification of psychological/psychiatric issues, and therefore it is not a recognised diagnostic category. Period. And she is - by her action and her verbal omission - passing it off as if it is. Under the above TDA 1968, she's committing a strict liability offence every time she does this. Such an offence is - essentially - an offence of omission.

    "All that said, I see some legitimacy to her reworked concept of CADD which is now described a relational disorder, rather than on a good-guy/bad-guy approach."

    On the basis of what I've already said, the concept still lacks legitimacy.

    "The way this is headed it could prove very useful to intact couples who are going through rough patches, and I watch with interest its continued development."

    So shall I, but for differet reasons, I am sure.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 12:16 PM  

  • "I noticed you removed some posts."

    No. Edits and correction of typos.

    I'm dyslexic.

    And I'm sure you'd have been a bit pissed off if I'd left in an instruction to "eat your own arse off", wouldn't you?

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 12:20 PM  

  • Unless, Anon, you're addressing ABFH... but I can tell you that it was I who removed the posts, not her.

    BTW... you in FAAAS?

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 12:22 PM  

  • I have not removed any comments in this thread. Feel free to continue disagreeing with me as much as you want, Anonymous. I'm finding your arguments quite amusing, to be frank, though I expect a BACP ethics tribunal would be considerably less amused by them.

    By Blogger abfh, at 1:05 PM  

  • ABFH (to Anon): "I'm finding your arguments quite amusing, to be frank, though I expect a BACP ethics tribunal would be considerably less amused by them."

    LoL

    I'm with ABFH on this... like, Dah!

    But I'm not sure whether I find Anon's 'arguments' more naïve or more facile. Not exactly based on much more than Anon's wishful thinking, it seems.

    Anon may well find the whole issue amusing, but I doubt that too many people working in the field of psychology, psychotherapy and counselling would be amused at the notion of someone in their broad professional field ... well... manufacturing fictional diagnostic categories, whose bases have been lifted wholesale from another practically identical depression category which is itself not recognised as a separate 'disorder' by either DSM or ICD!

    I'm not amused by it: this practice is dangerous because it has a high potential to mislead the public, particularly those in vulnerable states. Aston is not behaving in an intelligent fashion by doing this, and she could lose her accreditation with the BACP. The BPS could also - if she applied for membership - refuse to grant it, because of this activity.

    Note: SAD, on which Aston has based her CADD, does not appear as a specific diagnosis in DSM IV-TR or in ICD 10; the diagnosis is depression (i. e., major depressive episode), with a specifier. Given this, neither diagnosis can be said to exist, and it is - at best - folly for practitioners to act as if they do. At worst, it is a form of malpractice (since a non-diagnosis is being made in either case).

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 2:17 PM  

  • "The way this is headed it could prove very useful to intact couples who are going through rough patches, and I watch with interest its continued development."

    As a more of lab rat rather than any kind of a professional, I have seen a lot of studies including ones that were passed by ethics boards and even that could be shown to have some validity as being helpful, be terribly abused in the wrong hands.

    With all that is being said negatively about autistics right now putting such a disorder that leads to treatment as this one does, into the hands of a wide group of practitioners who potentially bring to it their own misguided views about autistics in general....weather it can pass as a credible treatment or therapy or not,it is a really bad idea.

    It starts with the wrong premise. It sucks.

    By Blogger Ed, at 2:27 PM  

  • "Not in this business, it can't... the professional bodies (BPS, BACP, APA and so on) and the official bodies whose job it is includes the standardisation of all concepts of atypicality in emotional, behavioural amd cognitive functioning (DSM and ICD) have specific protocols for acsertaining the validity and reliability of any asserted psychoatric/psychological issue, regardless of any issue of copyright on the word 'disorder'. For this reason, Aston is treading stupidly by doing what she's doing. If she was brought to the attention of the BACP, her lack of adherence to a proper research protocol in claiming that what she is claiming to exist actually exists."

    M. Aston has never submitted CADD to the APA, BPS or any other organization's formal disgnotic guidelines, meaning naturally that any such guidelines to not apply to CADD. Professional bodies are only interested in investigating false formal claims, which MA has not made.

    Therefore you are still confabulating a false argument and have contributed nothing new to your accusations. Hot air only. It also means I have nothing more to read on this blog.

    Over and out.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:06 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 6:13 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 6:14 PM  

  • Edited for typos.

    Anon... oh boy, you're useless!

    "M. Aston has never submitted CADD to the APA, BPS or any other organization's formal diagnostic guidelines, meaning naturally that any such guidelines to not apply to CADD. Professional bodies are only interested in investigating false formal claims, which MA has not made." (corrected YOUR typos for you!)

    The very fact that she hasn't done this means she is already deep in shit for malpractice! For reasons already stated! Like it or not, Aston has made a false claim: that CADD actually exists as a separate diagnosable disorder! And you are so fucking wrong: professional bodies are very interested in the activities of those whose activities put the reputation of the profession at risk.

    "Therefore you are still confabulating a false argument and have contributed nothing new to your accusations. Hot air only. It also means I have nothing more to read on this blog."

    That in itself means you lost the argument but are too weak in ego to accept that and learn from the experience.

    You need to think: are you the sort of person that Aston needs supporting her?

    Maybe I should be supervising her research too!

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 6:17 PM  

  • Just a thought.... was Anonymous actually Aston?

    If so, I totally fucking OWNED her!

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 6:20 PM  

  • You wish

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:53 PM  

  • LoL

    Nuff said :P

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 9:29 PM  

  • Reform Normal, it's not just you. I also own Aspergers in Love, and, as an Aspie woman with an NT boyfriend, I thought it was actually pretty helpful. The one strange thing I can think of (and what matches what I've heard about her elsewhere) is that she kept making the claim that Aspies were especially prone to becoming domestic abusers, especially Aspie women. I have *NEVER* seen that claim anywhere else, and I read a lot of autism articles! But apart from those nutty little non sequiturs, the book (as I remember it anyway) did a pretty good job of explaining Aspies to NTs and NTs to Aspies. I don't remember any blaming, judging or demands to change going on, just pointing out areas of potential conflict. I also remember her pointing out positive aspects of having AS in a relationship.

    I think my boyfriend and I have also taken part in one of her questionnaires. It was supposed to be material for her next book, and, unfortunately, I can't remember specific questions she asked.

    By Blogger Lindsay, at 10:31 PM  

  • Lindsay,

    Helpful to remember that Aspergers in Love is a public document in that it went through editors with Jessica kingsley before publication. Her own website is probably a better reflection of what she reslly believes and that is apparently not good for the AS partner. Actually CADD itself should be good enough as to the lady's beliefs - say what ???? and this from a counsellor??? Aren't they supposed to be neutral?

    Also. her capacity for dishonesty is quite extensive. She still has an article on the FAAAS site "Living with Aspergers" that she refuses to remove, which is a fabrication from one end to the other. I've never seen so many false sources in one document. In some ways it is good that it's there since the lies are readily exposable so to speak.

    However, I would trust this lady about nothing. I often wondered what Coventry University was about giving her an MSc. She's obviously not capable of research at that level, or any level for that matter. I suppose they were enthralled to have a new area to explore, not that anything has emanated from that institution.

    By Blogger Alyric, at 2:26 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 5:24 PM  

  • "I often wondered what Coventry University was about giving her an MSc. She's obviously not capable of research at that level, or any level for that matter."

    I could provide information to clarify here.

    Her M. Sc. is in Health Psychology, and is seen as the first stage in going on towards getting chartered status with the British Psychological Society as a health psychologist. It covers research methodologies not always used in clinical and counselling psychology but often found in educational psychology (e. g., grounded theory and action research). It involves learning how to analyse situations from a systems point of view, looking at how biological, social and psychological factors interact to give rise to various issues such as: health-related behaviour change; stress and one's reaction to it; how health-care professionals interact with patients/clients and how to improve relation between them; other areas of professional practice are covered too. I'm not sure about diagnostic skills: the course syllabus in health psychology doesn't seem to contain much onthis area, and nor does the BPS's own qualification (which this one should match onto).

    From the BPS site: "Health psychologists use psychological principles are used to promote to change in people’s attitudes, behaviour and thinking about health and illness. They deal with topics such as quitting smoking, skin care in the sun or promoting safer-sex. The aim is promote good health and prevent illness." Diagnostics is not mentioned.

    There is also a substantial research methods component to the course, and this means - along with the above - that she should be able to: conduct research better than it seems she actually does; understand her clients' situations better than she evidently does; and could know how to help her clients deal with potential stressors on their relationship than she seems to want to. In other words, she's obviously learned the skills and knowledge she needed to pass the course - so Coventry Uni is not at fault for allowing her a pass in the course and awarding the degree: it's her that's at fault for not using the skills and knowledge she has, and letting her prejudices run amok in her professional practice.

    In other words... she is aware of the the BPS and BACP codes of practice. And she should know how to do things better than she's doing them now.

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 5:27 PM  

  • I've noticed that in this blog piece by Ettina she states that Tony Attwood was scheduled to appear at a conference that was planned to include discussion of that Cassandra disorder piffle, on Oct 22-23rd 2008.
    http://abnormaldiversity.blogspot.com/2008/06/letter-to-tony-attwood-about-cassandra.html

    I've also noticed that at Mr Attwood's web site his US talking engagement for those dates has been cancelled. Perhaps he has more good sense than I've previously given him credit for?
    http://www.tonyattwood.com.au/workshops2.html

    And could I please be excused for stating the bleedin' obvious? If you want to have a long and happy relationship, don't get into a relationship with a person that you have absolutely nothing in common with!!! And if you are very unhappy in your present realtionship, get separated! Get divorced! No-fault divorce has been legal and available for the last 30 years or so in Australia! Avail yourself of this legal service, and stop whingeing about aspies or NTs, just do it!

    By Blogger Lili Marlene, at 5:01 AM  

  • "M. Aston has never submitted CADD to the APA, BPS or any other organization's formal disgnotic guidelines, meaning naturally that any such guidelines to not apply to CADD. "

    Which is precisely why she should be in deep trouble, presuming she has used CADD in her practice , without adding the appropriate qualifiers. By using it in practice, she has, by implication, presented it as a professionally accepted disorder.

    Part of the evolution or the guidelines is to stop people using pet theories as accepted facts.

    "Professional bodies are only interested in investigating false formal claims, which MA has not made."

    Wow, I think this comfirms that you aren't Maxine. A professional like Maxine would at some point have been made aware of fitness to practice hearings. Some of these involve being pulled up for simple things like failing to write up and sign records in time, or failing to phone in sick a couple of times.

    If I were to invent a disorder and then use it in professional practice without going through any of the standard channels, I'd expect to come out the other side with no registration, a permanent ban and certainly no chance of ever being employed on any Band, much less a Band 5+.

    As pointed out before, if she's using CADD on any clients records, then she is making a formal claim, as clients records have the status of formal documents (as in, you can be called to justify them in court).

    By Blogger AspOT, at 6:52 PM  

  • Well done, AspOT!

    If Anon wouldn't let me have owned him/her.... they'd be hard pressed to not have been owned by your input!

    Make 'em 'ave it!

    :)

    *gleeful as fuck!*

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 8:12 PM  

  • Glad somebody with a prominent google ranking has picked up on Aston and crowd. Here's some bullets (otherwise titled, "Did you know that ...")
    * Aston publishes through Jessica Kingseley Publishers, the same publisher used by FAAAS and Gisela Slater-Walker. This is not an ordinary publisher, it produces *subsidized* literature in the field of health care. That is, their books don't generally sell for a profit. If you have the money, they will print your book. Unedited. Unreviewed. You can find a grammar mistake on every page of Aston's book - having JP edit your book costs extra.
    * Aston is part of a mutual-endorsement ring including Karen Rodman of FAAAS and Gisela Slater-Walker. All three have paid JKP to print their books, to establish themselves as authors and authorities. They give one another glowing reviews; each says "and look at these other authors who love my book!"
    * Tony Attwood is part of this group, sadly. (He is the one with the connection to Jessica Kingseley Publishers.) He actually has glowing credentials, upon which the others lean heavily.
    * Tony's books make a little money, the others make zip. So ...
    * FAAAS holds weekend-long conferences featuring Attwood, Aston, Slater-Walker ... for a handsome fee.
    * Men are generally not welcome; as its name implies 'Cassandra Affective Disorder" is strictly a girl thing.
    * Aston had a relationship with an Aspie that didn't work out.
    * The quiz on Aston's web page introduces Selection Bias, rendering the data worthless. Aston has been told this.
    * Aston has made persistent efforts to promote herself on the net; Wikipedia has several times scrubbed her material off; she loves to get herself mentioned in the same sentence as Attwood and to posture as a "noted author."
    * In the US, FAAAS is actually attempting to get *legislation* passed to gain legitimacy.

    By Blogger chris, at 9:55 AM  

  • * Aston had a relationship with an Aspie that didn't work out.


    oh? interesting!

    that could explain a shitload....

    By Blogger David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction), at 9:48 AM  

  • David said:

    * Aston had a relationship with an Aspie that didn't work out.


    oh? interesting!

    that could explain a shitload....

    Explains a lot to me too David.

    Seriously,if that's true, I don't think that a therapist can claim to be objective when they design a disorder around the emotional turmoil involved with recovering from a relationship that they claim failed based on the what they believe the other person's diagnosis revealed about how they automatically relate to others.... or because they (the non Aspie) has dysfunctional issues that they claim would draw them to people with a person with this "disorder."

    This draws a concrete conclusion before therapy begins. How does teaching people to be biased in this way help to promote a method for establishing better relationships?

    The only logical direction or goal for such therapy would seem to me to be them (the non Aspie) moving beyond these dysfunctional issues and not choosing a Aspie for a relationship in the future.

    I don't see how that would not promote the idea that Apies are a dysfunctional relationship waiting to happen.

    To me it shows a sick aspect of society that would entertain the idea of allowing this kind of dysfunctional view to be accepted and given validity as a psychological disorder.

    And MEN are not welcome? What does that say about women AND men? How can these views lead to healthy relationships?

    Label millions of people as dysfunctional, then go and allow for someone to label their relationships as something that people would need to recover from based on how all their relationships are ( by the association with this diagnosis) toxic. That's sick!

    By Blogger Ed, at 10:47 AM  

  • Hey, you're openly militant about defending the rights of people with your diagnosis... so don't judge people with mine.

    For your enlightenment, so you don't continue going around just torching the world when it points out YOUR effect on the neurotypical people around you, Aston's work is mainly with people who are desperately seeking coping skills to STAY IN ASPERGER MARRIAGES! If you did any real looking into this diagnosis, you would have found that, once the NT person leaves the relationship, the symptoms of CADD go away. So those who have divorced an AS spouse, if they didn't already have some other co-existing issue (EDD or PTSD for example) usually go on with their lives without need for much further treatment for how difficult and painful it was being married to someone with Asperger's.

    And get some facts straight. Her rates are actually in line with the cost of seeing an average counselor in the States. One hour of couple's counseling is 60 BP. Her workshops, which last 2 days, have a small capacity and only happen every 3 mos, cost only 150 BP. Where's the get-rich-quick scheme here? She shows up everyday of the week and works an 8 hour day just like anyone else! She's not a quack. She's just telling the world something that makes you really uncomfortable in your autistic skin, that's all. Grow up and accept that the people who share their lives with AS spouses should be encouraged, not denegrated, for getting the help they need. And the only help available at this point is Aston's work. Do you have something helpful to add? Or are you just here to make the world fit what your autism demands it be. Been there. Done that. Got the CADD to prove it!

    You rail that she's selling a book about this new diagnosis. THANK GOD! My marriage would already have ended if not for that book showing us that there's a specific dynamic between AS and NT partners. I'm not losing my mind anymore, and thus, the strain has been lifted from my AS partner that he's just a horrible person. We have renewed compassion for each other due to recognizing the CADD in our relationship.

    I think this tirade you're on is just based on finding out that your illness can actually make other people around you sick themselves. Your ugly public response to that news is unfounded and very destructive to those of us who are working hard to find ways of co-existing with autistic spouses. You have no right to decide what the people around you need. You have autism. Deal with your own illness. That should keep you way too busy to defame people erroneously.

    And BTW, Cassandra wasn't believed and suffered for it. So your ugliness here basically proves Aston right.

    If I was as nasty as you are in this slanderous thread, I'd hope you receive exactly what you give here... no understanding. Good luck with the ultimate loneliness and rejection you're creating for yourself.

    CassandraInRecovery
    (and desperately seeking mutually beneficial ways of remaining in an Asperger marriage)

    By Blogger CassandraInRecovery, at 10:01 AM  

  • I have been in an AS/NT marriage for almost 30 years. Husband just diagnosed two months ago.

    Struggling to understand, and I find it fascinating to learn from this blog and others that many Aspies are extremely hostile to NTs. For example, saying that NT emotions are delusional, when AS just can't perceive them. Makes as much "sense" as a blind man saying a sighted person is delusional.

    I have run many of the anti-NT point of view past my husband for his comments, and he agrees that he thinks that NTs are dishonest, deceptive, delusional, and even crazy.

    I think that gives me a lot of insight. Having been bullied is no excuse. I was bullied mercilessly for years but I knew why. It was because I was smarter, a "walking encyclopedia," a "walking dictionary," a "four-eyes," "flat as a board," and otherwise did not fit into the herd, but I understand herd mentality.

    Not all NTs practice herd mentality, so why lump us all together? Not fair or rational to judge people just on one characteristic. Just a thought . . . .

    I think the hostility stems from other things. I am wondering how much of NT intolerance of AS behavior is because NTs pick up on the hostility?

    At any rate, if you can't (or choose not to) understand NTs, what makes you think you can understand how being in an AS/NT relationship affects the NT partner?

    By Anonymous Ilaine, at 3:13 PM  

  • Ilaine, if your question was addressed to me, I don't even use the term "NT" on this blog, and I certainly never said that NT emotions are delusional. If you are describing the content of some other website, you should address your complaint to the author of that site, instead of assuming that all autistic bloggers have identical opinions.

    C.I.R. -- thanks for giving my readers such a vivid description of what goes on in the Aston cult. My condolences to your husband.

    By Blogger abfh, at 9:28 AM  

  • You are a bulling blog of Aspies no different than the way my Aspie husband bullies his family. It's pathetic when the truth is exposed: The truth being that you Aspies are unbearable to live with for a normal feeling human being. Because you have NO feelings nothing, you are like human computers and nothing more. And the shit I put up with so my three children will have a roof over their heads. The shit my children put up with such as explosions of anger because you are frustrated. Oh woe is me... Maxine is GOD because she speaks the truth about you sickies. I know, for I am a NT married to an Aspie male and would love it when I no longer have to ever see his face ever again!

    Thanks to Maxine and counselors like her, I have learned to survive, and to do my best living with his utter lack of feelings, lack of friends, and the most boring personality ever because he does the same things over and over again. Never should he learn to do something different for a change. Change? Why? The guy can't even take a vacation and have fun because it disrupts his routine.

    No dears, Maxine hit it right on the head. PLEASE, Aspies marry only Aspies. Don't put NT's in your life. You will ruin the spirit of joy an NT feels. Get you're own match-making site, and find each other leave NT's alone!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:04 PM  

  • So you don't love your husband. And you don't have a job.

    And you deal with this by trashing a group of millions who never met you nor your husband.

    Maybe your husband is just a jerk. Maybe you're just the lazy dependent wife of a jerk. Maybe you should leave him and get a job.

    Maybe it's that simple. People who can't make hard choices always are avid collectors of scapegoats for their misery.

    By Blogger CeilingCrash, at 2:29 AM  

  • "Anonymous said...
    You are a bulling blog of Aspies no different than the way my Aspie husband bullies his family. "

    Oh my fucking God! Bullying! Did I just read this right?
    1. You fucking NT harpies from aspartners make demands from your husbands they cannot or know how to do. Whining and nagging narcisstic bitches.

    2. I tried to communicate with you people in a nice and respectful way on aspartners. I tried to logically explain to you how we think to get you all to understand our point of view. Here is the thing. One of you said I was welcome there and the other said I was not. After that was said I was allowed to post there for a few posts but all of a sudden my posts were modded out.

    Basically you had a set of contradictory rules just like the rest of the NTs of this world do.

    3. Let's talk about Rosek13 another narcisstic bitch who only gives a fuck about herself. She is very gleeful that she will be able to smoke in her house. Her son lives there and can be affected by the 2nd hand smoke just so you know. That's offensive to me.

    4. You NT harpies make us do stuff we are unable to do. When we ask you to show us how to do it you fucking bitches start talking condescending to us, telling us that it's obvious or something to that effect.

    5. You bitches do not care about our sensitivities at all. Some of us are sensitive to noise and smell.

    6. You bitches make us do things around the house in this ad-hoc and round robin manner(multitasking). By the way this multitasking is not as efficient as you all think and I can mathamatically prove it to you.

    7. We want to be able to be ourselves with you and within society at large. The truth and fact is we cannot be something we are not. You bitches are trying to pull a Pygmalion on us. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pygmalion_(mythology)

    You see bitches I know about ancient mythology too. I can also make up a fictious disorder. I will call it Pygmalion Syndrome. You NT Harpie bitches give us Pygmalion syndrome. You try to make us into something we're not, we fail to meet your standard, you make us feel like shit for it every fucking Goddamn day, and we sink more and more into major depression

    8. My birthday is coming up on March 28, 2009 and I will be turning 30. I wanted to kill myself because I am dealing with someone exactly like you NT harpies who wants to make me do stuff I cannot do, function in a way I cannot, read her fucking mind, function in this ad-hoc and round robin way and makes me feel like shit when I have failure after failure with her.

    I am slowly coming out of that thanks to Timelord and by talking to him and other aspies on here I am slowly being cured of my pygmalion disorder.


    It's pathetic when the truth is exposed: The truth being that you Aspies are unbearable to live with for a normal feeling human being. Because you have NO feelings nothing, you are like human computers and nothing more. And the shit I put up with so my three children will have a roof over their heads. The shit my children put up with such as explosions of anger because you are frustrated. Oh woe is me... Maxine is GOD because she speaks the truth about you sickies. I know, for I am a NT married to an Aspie male and would love it when I no longer have to ever see his face ever again!

    "You NT bitches are unbearable to fucking live with. You are selfish and narcisstic. You are nagging and demanding. You are dishonest, will use people if you can, and are fucking hypocrits.

    Thanks to Maxine and counselors like her, I have learned to survive, and to do my best living with his utter lack of feelings, lack of friends, and the most boring personality ever because he does the same things over and over again. Never should he learn to do something different for a change. Change? Why? The guy can't even take a vacation and have fun because it disrupts his routine.

    "I feel more stressed and more exhausted when I come back from the vacation then when I went on so fuck off bitch."

    "No dears, Maxine hit it right on the head. PLEASE, Aspies marry only Aspies. Don't put NT's in your life. You will ruin the spirit of joy an NT feels. Get you're own match-making site, and find each other leave NT's alone!

    Discriminating and Bigoted Harpie Bitch. I spit on the ground you fucking walk on.



    11:04 PM

    By Anonymous Cube Demon, at 2:27 AM  

  • Cube Demon, please take a look at my post On Becoming a Bitch, in which I explained that I use the word as part of my screen name to show attitude. This is similar to the use of "queer" within the gay community to show pride and determination by using a word that would be offensive in other contexts.

    I would appreciate it if you would refrain from using the word "bitch" on my blog as an insult toward women.

    By Blogger abfh, at 10:49 AM  

  • My apologizes, ABFH. It won't happen again.

    By Anonymous Cube Demon, at 11:07 AM  

  • ABFH, If I offended you in any other way I apologize for that.

    Just reading the messages at http://people.delphiforums.com/mamamarch/aspartners/ makes me meltdown.

    That is where these women who say they're cassandras are from.

    I am working on the meltdowns tough and trying to contain the meltdown demon that I have and to work on and channel the meltdown into doing something good.

    Here is a bit of crappy picture I did of this representation of what I'm doing. http://www.wrongplanet.net/forums-profile-viewprofile-u-22839.html

    This demon represents the meltdowns I could have and the hypercube structure represents the containment and the controlled direction of where to channel to meltdowns, anger, hate. Each time the demon tries to get out through the black parts it will fail to get out of this structure thus the demon is contained, controlled, and tamed. It learns I control it and it does not control me. This is a symbolic representation that the meltdowns can be channeled into a cause greater than yourself and the anger stemming from a meltdown does not control you.

    The jagedness of the blackness represents the scars from the bigotry that I have dealt with most of my life. The white represents the outside and the demon can go outside only if I let it and need it.

    So, ABFH I have a long way to go to control this demon and I humbly apolgize for my meltdown when I wrote that.

    ABFH, do you have any tips for me to help control these meltdowns?

    By Anonymous Cube Demon, at 11:27 AM  

  • Cube Demon, no, I can't offer any helpful tips in that regard, as what you describe is not part of my personal experience. I expect Wrong Planet may have some forum discussions that would be helpful to you.

    By Blogger abfh, at 12:18 PM  

  • This is directed to that poor excuse for a human being who posted in support of Maxine.

    You are an ignorant fool who belongs in the 1950's. Check your calendar again, lady (and I use that term loosely because I support the thrust of Cube Demon's rightly infuriated post). That sort of rhetoric belongs in a culturally prehistoric time. You should be absolutely ashamed of yourself and you should be more understanding and tolerant - particularly with someone you CHOSE to spend the rest of your life with.

    Usually if an Aspie is being nasty there's a good reason for it. Look at your own behaviour first - if you have the courage. Being an Anon indicates you probably don't.

    By Blogger Timelord, at 7:16 AM  

  • Hi everyone. This issue has obviously touched a lot of raw nerves. Just my twopennyworth ... I have an ASD just outside the Asperger range - PDDNOS - and had a long relationship with someone with Asperger's. The CADD model makes a lot of sense to me in explaining my own personal experience in the relationship, and how my emotional health was affected. Similarly, in the relationship I had been in previously, with someone who wasn't on the ASD spectrum, I reckon in retrospect that my behaviour probably contributed to my ex's experience of similar emotional difficulties. Wish I could turn the clock back. I feel there is some real wisdom in the CADD thesis ... and I say this as someone who believes I have been caused, and well as been the cause of, what CADD describes ...

    By Anonymous Mr Cassandra, at 3:47 PM  

  • When you are married many years to a person who shows no emotions and who cannot fathom your emotions, you become like a flower that lacks water. Never being hugged , kissed, caressed, made love to or understood feels a lot like deprivation to me.

    The females are usually sought after for their strengths and their weaknesses and those who are the exact opposite of the Asperger male will be the most likely to have a deprivation disorder.

    Those who are well aware of the disorder and who are able to function well without significant show of affection might well be fine.

    However, someone gentle and sweet, vulnerable yet self assured, selfless and giving, show that they have great strength, possibly having been abused previously yet recovered, the givers and the most empathetic will dry up in an Aspie relationship.

    Yes, the problems in a marraige are great , but I laugh when I hear Asperger males say they were asked to change when they could not. Yes you are wired differently, but that is not an excuse for totally inappropriate behavior and selfishness. If you want to be in a marriage BOTH have to work at it, not place the burden on the female.

    Yet, in the relationship, the female oft becomes the single parent to their children and mother to the Aspie.

    Add to this housekeeper, cook, paying bills, sometimes the breadwinner. The person who plans the vacations, inititates sex, calls the plumber, gets the vehicles fixed, paints the house and oft times becomes the handyman in the house to save money. (this is a short list...)

    Nothing gets done without lists, explaining in great detail and much cajoling and badgering especially when the partner does not know they have AS ...as the communication skills are poor(er) then for both parties.

    Add to this the inappropriate blurting of private issues, embarrassing sexually or verbally in public, inability to converse, lack of social skills, loss of friends,lack of motivation for activities beyond those few which the Aspie focuses all too much time on...

    And yes the fricken burden after years of trying and working on the marriage, depression, nervous disorders, illness,loss of friends, social inhibitions become the norm for the female... so maybe there SHOULD be a name for it. Call it what you will but it certainly is deprivation.

    YES, some of these occur in a regular marriage! But, almost ALL of the above occur in the marriage... and that is just too damn much to bear for a normal, sensual and sexual female... (or male although they have other issues)

    Deprivation from normal human contact... you may call it what you will... but you may not dismiss it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:40 PM  

  • "When you are married many years to a person who shows no emotions and who cannot fathom your emotions, you become like a flower that lacks water. Never being hugged , kissed, caressed, made love to or understood feels a lot like deprivation to me."

    Let me put it to you this way. You unsavory CADDS love to play these no means yes games. We do not have the instinct to play these fucking games. I personally am not going to go to prison for rape or attempted rape so you can play your stupid and illogical games.

    "The females are usually sought after for their strengths and their weaknesses and those who are the exact opposite of the Asperger male will be the most likely to have a deprivation disorder."

    No, you're not suffering from a deprivation disorder. You and rest of you CADDs are really suffering from Narcissistic Supply Deficiency. http://samvak.tripod.com/faq28.html. You so called CADDs have this sense of entitlement for this so called idealic life.

    "Those who are well aware of the disorder and who are able to function well without significant show of affection might well be fine."

    Yes, because you unsavory women have this sense of entitlement towards attention. You CADDs love attention so much. This is one of the traits of Histrionic Personality Disorder as well as Narcissism.

    "However, someone gentle and sweet, vulnerable yet self assured, selfless and giving, show that they have great strength, possibly having been abused previously yet recovered, the givers and the most empathetic will dry up in an Aspie relationship. "

    Yeah, you CADDs are selfless and giving alright. You CADDs are not empathetic at all. You don't give a fuck about anything but yourselves and your idealic life.

    "Yes, the problems in a marraige are great , but I laugh when I hear Asperger males say they were asked to change when they could not. "

    No, you do ask us to change where we cannot. This is fact.

    "Yes you are wired differently, but that is not an excuse for totally inappropriate behavior and selfishness. "

    You have a social instinct. We do not. We do not know your unstated and unwritten rules. When we try to ask, people like you will not tell us and tell us what we're doing wrong. You all expect us to read fucking minds. We're not mind readers.

    If you want to be in a marriage BOTH have to work at it, not place the burden on the female.

    I actually agree with this. Both do have to work it out. Everything, needs to be talked about and there needs to be a system of who does what in what order. Why not use the Principles of Scientific Management by Frederick Taylor. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Principles_of_Scientific_Management

    Personally, this is what I thought was going to happen. I thought my fiance and I would set up a structured system that both of us would talk about and both of us would implement. No, she wants me to do things by rule of fucking thumb.

    By the way, love is unconditional. You CADDs want love on your terms only. Marriage is supposed to be a covenant and not a contract.

    "Yet, in the relationship, the female oft becomes the single parent to their children and mother to the Aspie."

    This is because both parties come into the marriage with different expectations on how the household should be run. You're aspie wants a system and structure and you insist on doing things by this rule of thumb and ad-hoc way.

    "Add to this housekeeper, cook, paying bills, sometimes the breadwinner. The person who plans the vacations, inititates sex, calls the plumber, gets the vehicles fixed, paints the house and oft times becomes the handyman in the house to save money. (this is a short list...)"

    First of all, with me, I don't want to go on vacations. They're pointless because I personally after a vacation need a vacation after the vacation. The rest of this is why a system needs to be developed on who is supposed to handle what.

    To me my fiance talks in a very vague manner. The truth is is phrases and words do have multiple meanings. What is wrong with lists? I do agree the guy with AS needs to acknowledge his AS. He is denying himself by not acknowledging this.

    "Add to this the inappropriate blurting of private issues, embarrassing sexually or verbally in public, inability to converse, lack of social skills, loss of friends,lack of motivation for activities beyond those few which the Aspie focuses all too much time on..."

    Why not help your Aspie Man out? Give him the details in a straight-forward and direct manner of what you want. Be very blunt with him. Do not use any indirectness with him. To me at least it comes across as a form of deception.

    "And yes the fricken burden after years of trying and working on the marriage, depression, nervous disorders, illness,loss of friends, social inhibitions become the norm for the female... so maybe there SHOULD be a name for it. Call it what you will but it certainly is deprivation."

    Yeah it's narcissistic supply deficiency.

    "YES, some of these occur in a regular marriage! But, almost ALL of the above occur in the marriage... and that is just too damn much to bear for a normal, sensual and sexual female... (or male although they have other issues)"

    This is a clue right here that you all love attention alot. This again is histrionic and narcissistic tendencies.

    "Deprivation from normal human contact... you may call it what you will... but you may not dismiss it."

    Define Normal

    By Anonymous Cube Demon, at 1:03 AM  

  • My comment;
    This whole scam is a Shameful exploitation of innocent people , by narcissistic imposters.

    I agree. "Define Normal".


    Reg.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:24 PM  

  • Interestingly, my non-autistic husband displays many (though not all) of the traits that Anonymous is complaining about. (Note: I also am non-autistic.) Take the vacation thing. He likes to go on trips once in a while, but they have to have a point. How many "CADD" patients have considered that perhaps what they hate so much in their partner isn't the ASD but just matters of personal taste? Or that their partner might have some other disorder other than an ASD that is causing so much friction?

    In short, why place the blame for all of a marriage's problems on one partner's autism spectrum diagnosis, without being sure that ASD was indeed to blame? Yeah, maybe it helps you feel better and maybe it helps get you in touch with the social and psychological services you obviously need, but consider the larger ramifications. How many people will give up on their marriages to autistics once they hear about this potential diagnosis? How many autistics will lose custody of their children in divorce proceedings, despite not being cruel partners at all? This could well affect all autistics undergoing divorce proceedings (and even criminal proceedings) in a manifestly unjust way. Considering that men already bear an unfair burden in family court (given a social prejudice that men are more likely to be abusers), and considering that men are more likely to get an ASD diagnosis (for a variety of reasons), this is going to make an unfair situation even more unfair, if it's allowed to go unchallenged.

    If CADD is real, I want to see real, peer-reviewed science to back it up, not just a bunch of anecdotes. Hulda Clark can pull out a dozen anecdotes about how liver flukes cause cancer and every other disease known to man, and how her "detox" treatments worked to cure it. That's not convincing to me, not when there is no other evidence than that. Yet the promoters of CADD don't furnish the evidence. Either they know it's fake or they don't care enough to prove it, which to me, tells me that either they are extremely sloppy (certainly Maxine Aston is) or they are just in it for themselves.

    By Blogger Calli Arcale, at 12:15 PM  

  • "Aston publishes through Jessica Kingseley Publishers, the same publisher used by FAAAS and Gisela Slater-Walker. This is not an ordinary publisher, it produces *subsidized* literature in the field of health care. That is, their books don't generally sell for a profit. If you have the money, they will print your book. Unedited. Unreviewed. You can find a grammar mistake on every page of Aston's book - having JP edit your book costs extra."

    This isn't true. JKP is not a vanity publisher, and its authors do not have to pay to have their work edited or published. JKP, like any publisher, will only publish books that they think they can sell. All books are submitted for review before they go to press, and all JKP authors receive royalties from their work at the standard 10% rate.

    Unfortunately the quality of the books that JKP produces is...variable, to say the least. They publish a lot of books by professionals who are very respectful of autistic people (Olga Bogdashina, for example) and books by autistic people, including non-verbal autistics who oppose the notion of cure (Lucy Blackman, for example). They are not a subsidized publisher, but a specialist publisher - they produce a list dedicated to autism, Asperger's Syndrome, and related conditions. Unfortunately they have also attracted a lot of authors who don't have so much integrity - Aston, the Slater-Walkers, and (most recently and most worryingly) Sally Kirk. I think they should be a lot more selective in who they take on - their desire to remain the leading specialist publisher in the field means that their overall quality is going down. This has been concerning me for a while. I wrote about it here:

    http://victoriabiggs.com/?p=199

    By Anonymous Vicky, at 8:55 AM  

  • Returning to re-read months later, and I must stop to give kudos again if I haven't already: This post is utterly kickass. Absolutely dead-on summary of Aston's whole craptacular process.

    By Anonymous evonne, at 5:55 PM  

  • Very enlightening. An issue much in need of serious attention.
    As a marriage and family therapist I strongly support the petition opposing the Aston inspired hate groups, FAAAS and ASPIA, As well as continued association and involvement by reputable psychologists in the field of Aspergers, Attwood, and Henault with Aston the founders of these groups, Rodman and Grigg, or any groups offshooting from, or like them.
    Tammy

    By Anonymous Tammy, at 11:43 PM  

  • So, this is like Richard Gardiner did with him nonsense and threat therapy.

    She is definitely projecting her own unresolved issues onto service users, AND IN NEED OF SERIOUS THERAPY HERSELF.

    Those inner children of hers need proper parenting.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:59 AM  

  • Neurotypicals are furious because a loophole in the CADD notion allows *Aspies* to claim they are suffering CADD.

    http://forums.delphiforums.com/n/mb/message.asp?webtag=aspartners&msg=9073.1&maxT=9

    LOL

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:40 AM  

  • Let me just make it clear that Maxine Aston does NOT have an "association" with us. We expect to be publishing some material which also dissociates us from the CADD nonsense.

    By Anonymous Christopher Slater-Walker, at 5:44 AM  

  • I cannot believe how angry some of these posts are. I am married to an Aspie male, and have been for 14years now. I have been trying to get up the nerve to divorce him for 5 years now. It is not because I fear for myself but because I fear for his future. He hasn't been able to keep a job for any length of time during our entire marriage. We have two children, a boy with Aspergers and an NT daughter. I really need to leave because I can see the effect this is having on both myself and our daughter. We receive no positive emotional support from either my husband or son.
    I know that from my experience with my husband and son, Aspies simply are incapable of understanding the depth of despair NT spouses go through when their emotional needs are not met. I do agree with Cube Demon in that Aspies are unable to do what their NT gf,bf or spouses need from them. My question is then why don't you leave. I cannot tell you how many times each day I wish my husband would just leave us. Get that brilliant mind of his together and see that this is not working - stop cursing me out and leave.

    Why don't Aspies just leave their significant other if it is so intolerable for them? Can someone please tell me that.

    By Blogger Roxanne, at 12:05 PM  

  • "I cannot believe how angry some of these posts are. I am married to an Aspie male, and have been for 14years now. I have been trying to get up the nerve to divorce him for 5 years now. It is not because I fear for myself but because I fear for his future. He hasn't been able to keep a job for any length of time during our entire marriage. We have two children, a boy with Aspergers and an NT daughter. I really need to leave because I can see the effect this is having on both myself and our daughter. We receive no positive emotional support from either my husband or son.
    I know that from my experience with my husband and son, Aspies simply are incapable of understanding the depth of despair NT spouses go through when their emotional needs are not met. I do agree with Cube Demon in that Aspies are unable to do what their NT gf,bf or spouses need from them. My question is then why don't you leave. I cannot tell you how many times each day I wish my husband would just leave us. Get that brilliant mind of his together and see that this is not working - stop cursing me out and leave.

    Why don't Aspies just leave their significant other if it is so intolerable for them? Can someone please tell me that."

    Because your husband loves you and the children. This is why Roxanne. Contrary to what you think he does love you and I love my NT wife.

    I have walked out many times out of anger and frustration but do you know what brings me back. It's love. I love her alot.

    This is why your husband will not leave. He loves you as I do my NT wife and that is my answer to your post.

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 9:31 PM  

  • Cube Demon

    I read your last post and then found myself asking the following questions:

    - If you love your partner, why are you happy to abuse them so viciously on a public forum? To me, that is not what you do to someone that you love.

    - Have you thought about how she would feel if she read what you've written about her?

    - If you knew she'd be reading it, would you phrase it differently?

    It seems like you expect your partner to adjust and adapt her needs to fit your own but there is no mention in there of what she does or does not suffer at your hands.

    Is this because you believe she doesn't suffer and the difficulties in your relationship are entirely her fault?

    We all know CADD doesn't exist - but deprivation within a relationship definitely does exist, and can occur whether you are Aspie or NT. If one partner isn't considering the needs of the other, some form of deprivation will exist. You gave an example about NTs not considering the Aspie sensitivity to noise and smell - my Aspie husband has no sense of smell and is therefore inconsiderate about my sensitivity to smells. The same rules don't apply to every Aspie.

    I see an awful lot of Aspies 'NT bashing' on the internet, and vice versa, and I find it strange and pointless because, scientifically, we are ALL on the spectrum, just at different points. You could be insulting someone who is a millimetre away from you on the spectrum, or even someone who would be diagnosed with Aspergers or not depending on which doctor they went to! It's just not logical - or helpful.

    My last point - you may want to consider toning down the language. I initially skipped your earlier posts because they were so unhinged that I'd put you down as some weird, over-the-top, bitter Aspie that had lost all ability to be objective. I only went back and read them after the later calmer post, and saw that amongst the swearing you had some interesting points. If you're writing on here, you must want people to read what you're saying. People aren't going to listen to you if you come across like a nut job.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:49 AM  

  • "Cube Demon

    I read your last post and then found myself asking the following questions:

    - If you love your partner, why are you happy to abuse them so viciously on a public forum? To me, that is not what you do to someone that you love."

    Because I was wrong to do that. I've been doing alot of self-relection lately and the truth is I'm afraid of failure and I'm afraid of conflict. I use unhealthy level 2 and level 3 coping mechanisms.

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 9:27 AM  

  • "- Have you thought about how she would feel if she read what you've written about her?"

    This is my problem right here.
    My feelings are different than hers. You all say we're being inconsiderate. Words can have multiple meanings and each meaning can multiple usages. I want to learn though because I love her alot.

    From my point of view you aspartners on delphi.com are the most inconsiderate women I've ever met. All you do is bash. I could be perceiving things wrong about you. If I am wrong than I'm sorry.

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 9:28 AM  

  • Look at this right here. She was trying to be considerate towards others but ended up being inconsiderate by your interpretation. Do you see the problem?
    http://savedaspie.blogspot.com/2009/05/social-graces-or-lack-therof.html

    Why can't there be many different versions of being considerate. I would need to know what your version was?

    "- If you knew she'd be reading it, would you phrase it differently?"

    From my point of view, This is calling the kettle black. I'm not trying to be nasty. If I come across that way I'm sorry.

    "It seems like you expect your partner to adjust and adapt her needs to fit your own but there is no mention in there of what she does or does not suffer at your hands."

    Actually no. I just want to know what my role is. I need to know what set of tasks I am supposed to do. I need to know how to do these tasks correctly or am I still entitled to nothing? I want to know how to adjust to you. I want to be able to comform but how can I conform if I do not know how to comform?

    None of us can be responsible or considerate until we know what your application to the meaning of the words are and the steps on how to get to your application.

    "Is this because you believe she doesn't suffer and the difficulties in your relationship are entirely her fault? "

    It takes both of us to tango. You're right some of the blame does fall on me. I love her

    "We all know CADD doesn't exist - but deprivation within a relationship definitely does exist, and can occur whether you are Aspie or NT. "

    "If one partner isn't considering the needs of the other, some form of deprivation will exist. You gave an example about NTs not considering the Aspie sensitivity to noise and smell - my Aspie husband has no sense of smell and is therefore inconsiderate about my sensitivity to smells. The same rules don't apply to every Aspie."

    You're right. I'm working on changing all to some. I do make generalizations and I need to correct that. I have to assume I know nothing and I know that I know nothing.

    "I see an awful lot of Aspies 'NT bashing' on the internet, and vice versa, and I find it strange and pointless because, scientifically, we are ALL on the spectrum, just at different points. You could be insulting someone who is a millimetre away from you on the spectrum, or even someone who would be diagnosed with Aspergers or not depending on which doctor they went to! It's just not logical - or helpful."

    You're right and I was wrong in the past for saying certain things. I was angry. I still have anger problems and it goes back to middle school. I don't know if you have seen the movie anger management. I held anger in for a long time just like Adam Sandler.

    "My last point - you may want to consider toning down the language. I initially skipped your earlier posts because they were so unhinged that I'd put you down as some weird, over-the-top, bitter Aspie that had lost all ability to be objective. I only went back and read them after the later calmer post, and saw that amongst the swearing you had some interesting points. If you're writing on here, you must want people to read what you're saying. People aren't going to listen to you if you come across like a nut job."

    I know and you're right. I let my own anger consume. You could say I almost because a sith. I can't let that happen.

    My lord and savior Jesus Christ told me this through talking to a man who is saved. He told me I could be logically correct in all the things I say but I fell into the anger trap. It clouded what I wanted to say. The honest truth is I'm not perfect and I do not think any of us are.

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 9:28 AM  

  • By the way, check out my new blog.

    http://ultimatesuperset.blogspot.com/

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 9:36 AM  

  • Will you come on my blog and we can talk further?

    By Blogger Cube Demon, at 1:33 AM  

  • I am married to a man with mild Asperger's Syndrome. He is extremely emotionally abusive. A great deal of his abuse consists of total indifference to my feelings and needs. I am not saying that it is a direct result of his AS because I do not know. I do know that I am equally responsible for my own suffering because I chose to marry him and I am too weak to leave him. I don't see that identifying the synergy between his emotional dificulties and mine should be seen as 'blaming' either of us. But, when we try to talk about it, he sounds just like the posters here. He denies the problem, blames me, and claiming he is the one being abused. Maxine Aston may not be a scientist and she may have taken liberties with the truth but she is onto something. Me thinks the AS community pretests too much.

    By Blogger Jean, at 12:25 PM  

  • Jean

    "I am married to a man with mild Asperger's Syndrome. He is extremely emotionally abusive. A great deal of his abuse consists of total indifference to my feelings and needs. "

    Jean, tell him what your feelings and needs are. Saying he is not considering what your feelings and needs are is vague. It tells him nothing and tells me nothing.



    "I am not saying that it is a direct result of his AS because I do not know. I do know that I am equally responsible for my own suffering because I chose to marry him and I am too weak to leave him. "

    Finally, you understand it takes two to tango.

    "I don't see that identifying the synergy between his emotional dificulties and mine should be seen as 'blaming' either of us. But, when we try to talk about it, he sounds just like the posters here. He denies the problem, blames me, and claiming he is the one being abused. Maxine Aston may not be a scientist and she may have taken liberties with the truth but she is onto something. Me thinks the AS community pretests too much.

    1. Prove it through scientific means.
    2. Give us an example where this condition occurs. "But, when we try to talk about it, he sounds just like the posters here. He denies the problem, blames me, and claiming he is the one being abused." It might be possible you're misunderstanding what we're saying.
    3. Read my blog posts as well. I want you to go inside my asd mind.
    words and meanings

    consideration for others

    Why should we change for you?

    Why should we change for you pt 2?

    By Blogger Cube Angel, at 1:50 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Cube Angel, at 2:05 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Cube Angel, at 2:07 PM  

  • Read this one as well
    constitution

    By Blogger Cube Angel, at 2:51 PM  

  • By Blogger Cube Angel, at 11:11 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:56 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:05 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:55 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:10 AM  

  • Hi there, can I ask the owner of this blog to remove my comments please, It's not that I am against Maxine, it's just that on hindsight I don't want to become involved. As a psychologist she is well within her rights to give her opinion on Aspergers and a make a report/assessment,whatever it is, the BACP told me Maxine was highly regarded and has worked with people with Aspergers for many years, the NHS & PCT's via GP's send people to her for her assessment opinion and counselling. A lot of people, adults with the condition are being fobbed off by their GP's around the country, mainly because of funding, and only people very pronounced with Aspergers are getting a diagnosis on the NHS. In my area only two adults were sent for a diagnosis to a specialist consultant paid on the NHS/PCT. Often a person with Aspergers knows what the problem is but nobody will listen or support them, you need a GP to refer you, but if doesn't then you are on your own and that's not a nice place to be for someone struggling with the condition. And yes I have self respect in abundance.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:39 AM  

  • @Anonymous: No problem, I've removed the comments.

    By Blogger abfh, at 11:02 AM  

  • I also have to add lastly, If local autorities/ PCT's pay the £500 for a consultant to diagnose an adult with the condition, someone who is isolated and cannot mix and has been like that all there life, showing obvious signs of Aspergers, and giving them the benefit of the doubt if they have an inklng themselves and say as much to their GP, Aspies can be very aware of what it is, don't underetimate their intelligence at analysing and researching it themselves, believe them. Then follow it up with support at day care centres, integration, socialisation, social etiquette, anger management etc. better work scheme projects with trained advocates etc, spend a bit of money to get them off state benefits, this will benefit society and the taxpayer as a whole, ok I am out of here.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:58 PM  

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cassandra_(metaphor)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:23 AM  

  • I am a 44 year old woman diagnosed at age 41 with Asperger's syndrome (AS). I recently read Maxine Aston's book 'Asperger's in Love' and felt quite offended by some of her interpretations of Asperger/autistic behaviours.

    For example, she describes Asperger women as often behaving violently towards their partners. As one of the least violent people on this planet I am concerned about this stereotyping. Furthermore, I have been abused on a number of occasions by NT men who took advantage of my difficulties in reading NT people.(I hasten to add that my intention is not to stereotype either NT or AS men as abusive).

    I cannot help but feel that Maxine Aston has an unconscious dislike (as well as misunderstanding) of people with AS. On her website she states:

    "I was once married to a very special man who was affected by Asperger syndrome, unfortunately he was not diagnosed 'til long after our divorce. Diagnosis came too late for us, it has always been my hope that my work will give couples and families the chance that we never had."

    (Sorry to be pedantic but note the poor sentence structure using commas rather than full stops).

    Maxine regularly offers workshops on her fabricated Cassandra disorder for the 'poor NT women' who have been deprived love and affection by their AS husbands.

    One thing that has struck me since my diagnosis is that if people with AS have poor understanding of NTs, the opposite is equally true: NTs don't read people with AS very well and may draw the wrong conclusions about our motives and behaviours as based upon their NT thinking.

    By Anonymous Louise, at 1:06 PM  

  • mmmmm

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:16 PM  

  • Relate???

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:18 PM  

  • I am sad and even ashamed to see so many people speak out agianst the obvious pain that most people go through as a partner of an aspie. For a person who has had no validation of their emotions or feelings and who has been abused by the aspie tendency to insult and yell, this site adds to the feeling of invalidation. I think it is disgusting that so many of you lack any understanding or even compassion for those dealing with Aspergers from the outside. My life has been ruined by my interactions with the disorder and I am not alone. It seems to me that you people are the ones who need to do the research and investigate the claims being made by a wide variety of partners. Shame on all of you for making people who are already hurt feel even worse.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:23 AM  

  • In reply to Louise, the paragraph you mention from maxines site looks OK to me, the punctuation is fine, you are being rather picky there. Also, for someone to state that her ex husband got his diagnosis too late and that they didn't have a chance shows that she wanted her marriage to work. If you don't understand something like Aspergers then you can't work upon strategies together in councilling to have a better marriage. The lack of understanding and continuation of dysfunctional aggressive behaviour leads to resentment and a breakdown of the relationship. It looks to me that maxine took the initiative, got clued up, worked at understanding what it was that had happened and empowered herself to help others. You can only talk from your own experiences, of course the manipulative and cruel person with Aspergers has learnt the wrong kinds of social etiquette and to survive in the world has learnt that belligerance can work to subdue and control others around them. Luckily in our society though women are able to lead independent lives if they become strong and say No! to abuse. It's well known that the majority of people with AS are victims of abuse not the other way around.

    By Anonymous JD, at 3:41 AM  

  • I can't believe M. Aston is a Relate councelleor, let alone councelling people with Aspergers!!
    This woman married my friend within a couple of months of meeting him after living as a lesbien for the previous twenty years and having three children by artificial insemination whilst being 'married' to a trans-sexual! The only experience she has of hetro marriage with the short time she was married to my friend who she later 'diagnosed' as having Aspergurs, after reading about it, as an excuse for her own failings in the marriage.
    And she is QUALIFIED to give advise???????

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:50 AM  

  • OK if I leave my belated commen? I bet this thread is old.
    I have been married for 5 years to an aspie.Five years of his aggression, lack of affection ,constant critcism,put downs,failure to even attempt to make the marriage work,even though I have begged him to come and see someone together.Today I saw my G.P. I realised the marriage I had worked so hard on ,was over.I cannot get my ap to move out- he just keeps coming up with excuses why he can't.He doesn't care that I'm unhappy, isolated, unloved.He just cares about himself.End of. If Maxine Aston gives women the chance to share their struggles,I couldn't care if she is a charleton.Life with an aspie hubby is unbearable.I just hope I can hold out long enough not to top myself before he moves out.I had a life once.

    By Blogger sell fish aspie, at 5:14 PM  

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