One of the most frequent questions I'm asked is why an aspie (or suspected aspie) suddenly goes "cold" and backs off on an otherwise good relationship.
It's a difficult question and the answers would vary considerably from one person to another and would depend greatly on the circumstances. Nevertheless, I'll try to point out some possibilities.
I generally like to stay positive on this blog and assume that people are not necessarily "evil" but simply misguided. Unfortunately, I do have to acknowledge that there are some people out there who take advantage of others.
I read a book a few years ago on "sociopaths in the workplace" and I was stunned by the figures. They suggested that sociopaths were so common that most workplaces (small business) had at least one or two.
The fact is that there are lots of people out there who really feel very little for others and who are very manipulative. I'd like to say that aspies aren't like this but I'm sure there are a few.
One of the problems is that sociopaths and aspies can present similarly on the surface. There's not a huge amount of immediately visible difference between "lack of emotional connection" versus "inability to convey emotion". Similarly, manipulative behaviour can often come across as simply "needy".
Since the aspergers diagnosis is based on purely subjective criteria, it's not unlikely that in some cases, sociopaths may be misdiagnosed as aspies.
You have been warned.
Now let's move onto more genuine and solvable reasons.
This is one of the biggest reasons. The aspie detects an approaching change in the relationship; perhaps you're talking about moving in, having children or maybe you're simply becoming assertive about routines; tea times, household chores or furniture placement.
Whatever the reason, the aspie change resistance kicks in. As we know, aspies are not the world's best communicators and half of the time they'll be completely unaware that the problem is change resistance. To them, they're just unable to cope with the TV being moved to the opposite side of the room. They don't know why they don't like it but they can think of lots of fancy excuses. The aspie may find it easier to go quiet and say nothing than to speak their mind.
The NT side of the relationship will often take this "quietness" to indicate grudging acceptance and may exacerbate the situation by repeating it (for instance, moving more furniture). By the time the "quietness" is really noticed as a problem, it's often too late and the aspie has gone "cold" on the relationship.
NTs can assist with change resistance problems by becoming aware of unusual "quietness" in their partner and encouraging discussion. Aspies can help by making more efforts to communicate, even if it means resorting to written forms.
Next time I want to look at the role that Depression and Self Doubt plays in causing aspies to back off on relationships.
So, I would pressure the person to return to being the person I first met.
Of course, no one wants a person who supposedly loves them to try to put them in an emotional box! This is the point in which all of my relationships (except for the one with my wife of 24 years) broke down.
When people ask me why my wife & I were able to break this pattern, I'm completely honest. All the credit goes to her! It is solely because of her patience and compassion that we were able to wade through my "issue" period and come out the other side.
My first NT husband had a very difficult time with making changes; my present NT husband is actually quite flexible, but he goes about making change in a very slow and determined way. It's his nature to want to weigh all the options before making a change, and this aspect of his personality balances my tendency to take quick, decisive action. When I'm right about a change that needs to be made, I'll lead us both in a very good direction, but when I'm wrong...Oy. It's good that he's there to slow me down!
I tried to explain things more black and white. He directly answered my questions and said he does enjoying spending time together and would like to continue but he didn't want to go beyond that. Presumably that meant not wanting to discuss feelings.
It's very frustrating as an NT knowing if he's interested at all. I suppose if he weren't he'd just make himself unavailable, hide or ignore my calls/emails instead of continuing to engage?
Two years later I am still on a very superficial level with them. They have, by this time, noticed my difference from them and each deals with it according to their individuality. Some avoid me, others accept our superficial relationship for what it is, others just seem to wonder about me.
The part you wrote about the sociopaths in the work place relates to Aspies in that, Aspies can sometimes be the target of "Socios". A lesson that is often learned the hard way by some of us. Also, I see a big difference between Aspies and Sociopaths, Sociopaths seem to jump right in and try to charm everyone to get what they want in social settings.
As for change resistance; yeah it's suddenly annoying to have something moved but I usually just shrug it off. My mom and my sister would often change the furniture layout just for the excitement of being in somewhat different setup which would drive me nuts as they often made the room worse then before. In retrospect I can understand this feeling of wanting some change but I keep myself too busy to worry about things like that.
I thought that I had lost the feeling of love for him, but he was so insistent about communicating with me for so long, that we eventually figured it out. But honestly, I didn't have much clue as to this being associated with my AS.
I had "gone cold" and thought it was all lost, as I do as usual when the relationship "moves to the next level". I had never been able to recover from this, but I have this time. And I think I may have found someone who can cope with me for a while. : )
I'd be grateful to anyone who had any insights to share if you'd be willing to contact me (see email through profile).
The first time I saw him I fell in love with him, a few weeks later I told him I liked him. To be totally honest I figured he would never see me again once I told him. To my surprise after he told me he wasn't really looking for a relationship, we continued to get closer and even faster than before.
My birthday marks the start of summer I spent the day with him and we both had a blast. About a week after my birthday he informed me that he thought it would be best if we did our own things over the summer. His birthday is the month after mine but he didn't want me to see him for that either.
I really want to talk to him but have been reluctant to even try to get in contact with him, because I don't want to make things worse. I feel like I did something but I have no idea what it was.
He confided a lot in me and told me a lot that he trusted me. I remember a post you did on stemming and stress relieving things that most aspies do. Everyday he would listen to his mp3 player before class started. But once he started hanging out with me, he stopped and just wanted to talk to me. We have been at each others houses and met each others families.
Neither of us have ever been in any type of relationship, and I never told him I wanted to be in one with him. I told I liked him once, but never mentioned it again. I just turned 19 and he just turned 20.
Truth be told, I would be ok being friends forever. I never mentioned it because my hope was that after being good friends for a while he might want to be more then that. Now, knowing that there is a chance I could loose him, I just want him back in my life.
Could you please help me know what to do.
Any advice you have would be wonderful.
So our relationship started to become stressful on him. One day he was telling me that I was his "dream girl" that the only thing he is sure of in his life was that he wants a future with me. Literally the next day, he was so cold and told me I am not what he wants. This was after I became upset that he was not responding to my messages for a period of time. I was so confused and distraught. He proceeded to ignore my emails, calls, messages for a month. When he finally spoke with me again, he was not the same person. He is easily agitated, unwilling to communicate and unwilling to compromise. It's like the person that loved me so deeply, so completely, more than anyone he has ever loved, was a totally different person. Now he tells me he doesn't have time to work on a relationship with me or anyone. I am emotional, because I am hurt and he doesn't seem to see why I should be and think I'm putting pressure on him by being emotional. I tried to get him to see it from my perspective so many different ways and I was met with only resistance. Right now, the emotional side of him that makes someone human is completely gone, and the only side remaining is the logical side. He said he doesn't know any other way to be but logical. He says he loves me but makes absolutely NO EFFORT to show it; he doesn't want me to see other people but tells me he WON'T be in a relationship that he has no time for. He thinks that there is something wrong with me and even called me emotionally unstable/hysterical when I cried. He has trouble communicating; he keeps flopping his points and was everywhere..He has trouble understanding his own emotions, I believe. But because he has trouble communicating, he says it's because I don't listen to him. I cannot for the life of me get him to see anything from my perspective despite however hard I try. His voice is monotone, cold and devoid of any sort of emotions. He says he has other priorities in his life, does not have time for a relationship with me. That really hurts. I told him it hurts, but he cannot handle my emotions and says I'm just "dramatizing." He no longer wants any communications with me. The worst part is the fact that he doesn't how the lack of empathy and lack of communication is attributed to his Aspergers at all. He was diagnosed in the 3rd grade.
This relationship has left me a complete mess. The way things ended makes me feel totally manipulated and scarred. I am having trouble piecing things together and I am having trouble moving on. Why did he become stone cold and prioritized everything in his life before love? What happened to the sweet, sensitive, caring, smart, witty guy that I once knew and still love?
I'm the woman who calls herself July 21st. You can read my story in part 2 of "Why do aspies back-off in relationships" if you want. When I read your words "what happened to the sweet, sensitive, caring, smart, witty guy that I once knew?" I immediately recognized more or less what happened to me. I'm NT and my male friend has AS. We were not together, but only very close friends although this relationship has never had very clear boundaries. At the beginning of our friendship he was always with me, always very sensitive and very caring. When things began to grow a little bit deeper he had a verbal anger attack at me and didn't talk to me for one month. I wrote him saying that I cared and we went back to what we had before for two months but when he sensed again that our friendship was not really only a friendship, he had another verbal anger attack against me and decided that he never wanted to meet me alone anymore but only with other people, so limiting very much our relationship and humiliating me. I often tried to write him nice words saying that we could fix everything and become friends again but it all ended up with him going back in august for good to his own home country and saying goodbye to all other friends except me. I haven't heard of him since 4 months and I don't think I'll ever hear from him again. I'm answering to your post for different reasons: first, to tell you that I understand you, and unfortunately that you are not alone, because I'm also very sad and scarred by what happened in a similar situation; secondly that I found some confort in this blog, but also on FB in the pages "asperger syndrome awareness" and "the girl with the curly hair". I never wrote there but I found a lot of explanations for my friend's behaviour which helped me a bit to understand what happended. It didn't solve the situation, but it helps a bit. I think that when the relationship becomes too stressful for them or if their anxiety from the relationship becomes too big, the only solution they have is to drive you away, because they cannot stand all this stress and anxiety. My friend was in the end very scared of me and of being alone with me but this was irrational, as I assure you I couldn't scare an insect, let alone a human being!!! But still, even if he was sad about it, he couldn't help being scared and driving me away. Also, the anger attacks are probably what is called "meltdowns", which are typical of AS. I always tried to forgive them, even if he insulted me very much. But I have to tell you that, in spite of me forgiving everything, he always blamed everything on me. I made mistakes and hurt him, of course, but never intentionally. He, instead, hurt me intentionally a lot of times, especially when he felt refused by me. The only advice I can give you is to think that it's not your fault and to try not to stress him too much by writing him too much or calling him too much, maybe just one simple and calm email where you tell him that you care and you want to solve things. I hope it works for you, for me it didn't but things were a little bit more complicated in our relationship that I can write here. And finally, I really wish Gavin or some other AS could help us understand and give us some advice on how to try and get a friend/boyfriend back when he doesn't want to speak to us anymore. I just left my friend free and in peace and didn't write him anymore, even if I still care, because I thought it's a way to respect his choice. But I also know that AS do not usually make the first move, so probably even if he wanted to contact me again, he will never do that. So I dont' know what to do and in abscence of advice, I will probably do nothing...????
I am very very happy because we had a normal ...very very normal conversation ....he was normal ...he was like me, like everyone....I want to dance of joy ...I want to share this with the infinite internet...there is hope!!!there is much hope!
I could not 'date'. Too complicated. I need clear rules.
So I made a plan: we had an arranged marriage through a traditional religion, and started out with lots of lovely RULES. Now we are more relaxed and know our limits.
I 'backed off' from previous women when I could not guess why they had changed, or when they ate lots of meat and I was a strict vegetarian (at the time). They were attractive but the meat they ate was not! (Then they went into a sulk, but I had already told them about the meat - they just didn't listen). So I back away from people who may be friendly but don't listen or understand me, instead pigeon-holing me in some sort of fantasy. Obviously that will go nowhere. We back off because we are smart!
I'm 44 and started dating a nice guy last year - he was 49- I think he is an undiagnosed aspie. He was incredibly smart, could remember huge sequences of numbers, didn't like social situations, he was obsessive about fixing things that needed fixing, always helping people in need (it was hard for him to say no to anyone - who needed any kind of help) he spoke in a constant monologue and anyone whom I introduced him to - thought he was socially awkward (I just thought he was adorable).
Dating was really fun at first. He was sweet, kind, helpful and very very loving. But slowly as the relationship progressed, like every relationship does, he would start saying every time he would leave my house, that he knew at some point I was just going to kick him to the curb, because everybody always did. I always reassured him- that I would never do that.. and I was quite confused why he would ALWAYS say that at our partings. I was having a blast- I felt like he was too.
Well... at a certain point, as the relationship, got to the " next level ", he would say he wanted to go to the next step, move some things to my place, move forward with me, but he just "couldn't do it" --he couldn't make the change, he said he was "frightened" by me... He wanted to keep everything as it is- He said his heart had so much scar tissue on it from past relationships- he just knew I would leave him eventually, because everybody always did. No matter how much I tried to convince him- he was stuck on that idea. So things would get hot and heavy with us- then he would just make himself crazy busy with work and just go away...even though I don't feel I did anything wrong... he would go "underground"- I would leave him messages, texts and hear nothing back. This whole thing just made me so sad.... and very confused.....
The pattern kept repeating itself over and over and over. I would eventually go and find him or we would run into each other- and it would start all over again- like it had in the past- hot and heavy- like it was brand new again (Like GroundHogs Day) then it would get to a certain point- and he would freeze in fear- and be gone again.
I see why women and friends would leave him. I see why no one would tolerate more than 6 months of this behavior. It's hurtful and confusing.... I would believe all the lovely things he would say to me.... I think he truly meant them... but he could never act on them. He was afraid of change....it gave him anxiety..... He was afraid of being hurt.
He told me once that he loved the "honeymoon" phase of a relationship- and I never really understood what he meant. Now honestly, I think I get it. When real life happens, pressures, plans, daily living, (he was working 2 two full time jobs), plus he never was able to say no to anyone "who needed something fixed" - when his voice mailbox was constantly full from 70 year old ladies needing something done or something fixed- his life would get so crazy out of control -that he ends up not calling anyone back- when all that pressure happens to him- he just goes radio silent...shuts down ... shuts down on the world...shuts down on all of us.....including walking away from me....
I still love him and I really tried to make it work... and I do believe he felt the same for me... but he will never be able to move forward with anybody...because every friendship and relationship progresses.... change always happens....
I never heard from him. I am pretty sure he was diagnosed with HFA in the hospital but can't be sure. He has several traits. He has difficulty with communication, he has a few friends but they are not close friends, he is resistant to change, can't handle conflict, is anxious is social situations, was not involved in things as a child and only had one friend, he also had a very awkward gait. He is very sweet and caring but assumes a lot of things and has difficulty with mind blindness and I was his first girlfriend at age 40. He did not start dating until 35.
Anyway, I recently emailed him and told him that I missed him and would he like to catch up over coffee or if he felt more comfortable we could talk over email. He replied and told me that he thought it was best if we both moved on and that he wished me well in the future and to take care of myself. He also asked me to not email him again.
I guess it is really over but I was thinking about sending him one last email because I feel I need to say some things for closure. I would like an aspie's advice on this. Should I send it? Will it only make him mad? How do you think he will react? I know all aspies's are different just like all NTs are different but I thought maybe someone could give me some insight. Thank you! Here is what I was going to send:
This will be my last email to you. I just have some things I need to say and I would appreciate it if you would read them. I think I understand what happened with us over the summer. I think that transitions and changes are very difficult for you. Our relationship and where it was going was overwhelming for you. I was asking you to give me something that was difficult for you to give (marriage) and for that I am sorry. I know how hard you tried. If I had understood then what I understand now, I would have reacted differently. My priorities have changed and I would have been happy keeping our relationship they way it had been, but I was never able to tell you that. This time I was looking to be friends with you. You once told me I was your best friend and I wanted to be that person again. I will always care about you. I wish you well.
What am I going to do, depends on the moment. For now, 6 years into this cyclone I'm still here, but.......
Nobody is perfect. I messed up and had words with one of his dear friends, who I had been feeling uncomfortable with because they seemed not to like me and I did not know why.. He immediately broke things off between us. When I got home today he took it another step and moved out. He will not talk to me.
I think this was a meltdown... We usually get along really really well and are supportive of each other. I am just lost right now. I can't reach him. I think he is hurt. He has always been extremely attentive towards me. More so than I would have expected.
It seems like he goes from wayyy up on cloud nine and is happy and talks fast and fun and then he just plummets.... He is talking with others right now I think, but he will not speak at all to me.
One thing I do know about, however, is bipolar disorder, as I was married for 12 years to someone with it. In case you haven't already researched all this, there is one type of bipolar II known as "mixed states," which is an awful combination of depression plus anxiety, sometimes depression plus panic attacks. I mention this because I do see a combination of depression and anxiety in my Aspie boyfriend, but it is not bipolar--it is just what happens to him when he gets overwhelmed by situations or experiences stress, which, unfortunately is common.
I have also experienced the push/pull and the hot and heavy followed by weeks of disappearance. We have to hang in there and work with all our love and patience or decide we're not up to the task. I know it can be incredibly difficult.
I want to recommend Emotionally Focused Therapy for couples who read this thread... as well as Internal Family Systems therapy for individuals who have a hard time understanding their own feelings of rejection, awkwardness, fear... I have found both of these therapies super helpful for myself and my marriage. About 10 years ago my husband and I had some EFT therapy and it has made the difference between ending a 21 year marriage and now going on 30 years truly in love and committed to each other .- while navigating the empty nest and relationships with our kids.
I have experienced almost all the emotions in this blog and I was curious to see if others did- so thank you for sharing. I'm currently working on friendships - and not letting those die just because I get distracted and/or don't know how to engage. Although it feels like work to engage, it is rewarding when someone says - "i'm your friend" and acts sad if you talk about moving. Most of my life I have dropped friendships when I moved, not realizing that that is not a normal behavior... Now I'm excited about trying to make some friends who may last for the rest of my life.
Final word: I don't believe that anyone is lacking in feelings... it is just a matter of accessing them. Don't give up - go to therapy. Find those feelings. My husband who seemed shut down for many years is so open and warm now - because he has found some healing in therapy. ALSO - he takes an SSRI ... which seems super helpful for certain kinds of depression. I now take an anxiety pill occasionally when I am facing a particularly stressful day. This has helped me to relax and reach out instead of withdrawing when I feel like someone is bullying me. And yes, I agree- the sociopaths go straight for those on the Autism spectrum because they know we have a hard time defending ourselves. But advocate for yourself and do it seriously but with kindness and they will be ashamed. I have seen them back off when I do this. And others, who have compassion, have then drawn near.
signing off - Stef M.
I did 13 years of this.
Space is your biggest tool.
Its a practice in living in the here and now.
Expectations lead to disappointment.
Acceptance is the answer.
Dont ever plan the future although dreams are fine.
We were both autistic.
Like a roller coaster ride.
Hes dead now and Im postmenopausal.
Wonder if Ill ever experience that bitter sweet love again.
Youre all beautiful x
I loved this man with every fiber that I had. I knew he was incapable of certain things but he could be so 'normal' at times because at 53, he had adapted and learned certain behaviors. I would forget. I had no intention of ever leaving him, I never cheated on him, never even looked at another man in that way in the 5 years we were together. He left me in January of this year (2018). He caught me smoking at my house. He is very against smoking for several reasons. I hid it from everyone, not just him. It was my way of coping with the stress. Of course I knew it was unhealthy, and I desperately wanted to quit. I wanted to ask HIM for help, my boyfriend, the man I loved. And he was the last person that I could. Please let me be clear, I do NOT believe hiding something from him was right not was it a healthy way to "cope". But there was zero tolerance on his part. He shut me out cold. I mean dead cold. I was devastated. Even though I knew how he could not empathize nor see things from my perspective. I kept asking myself "how can he say he loves me and then leaves"???? I am a very smart woman, I know intellectually that he just couldn't cope with me being "imperfect" . To him, I ruined his fairy tale. I was hopeful that he would over time (it's been 6 months) realize that ALL human beings are flawed, including himself. I have since that time quit smoking ( for me), been in therapy, immersed myself in personal training and work.
I still love M. I always will. But I know that there is little to no hope of reconciliation between us. I have some WONDERFUL memories. In the beginning it was just so awesome between us. Life happened, change happened. Our children graduated high school, his older son college. Every life event , I could see the retreat in him. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about this man. I know he came into my life for a reason. It's been a long hard road to turn my life around and I'm still not there yet. I wish him nothing but the best. And I pray that whomever he is with now never has to hear those words that he said so often to me "I'm scared to try again, I'm scared I will never be happy" Be happy M, be happy...
It's very difficult! I'm in some sort of relationship with someone undiagnosed and I just started making sense of his behavior when I considered the possibility of him being Asp.
The way it has been working for me is to leave him alone when he gets in his 'moods'... go do my things. Eventually he comes around and we can deal with each other again.
It was very late at night when he blurted all this non sense out, so I was not going to argue or go on and on. I of course felt horrible, sad and confused. I was crying and turned myself around away from him in the bed, he then went to comfort me by petting my head. The next day I asked him again and he said he had made his decision. I know it wasn't long enough but I thought i had finally found a good guy. He's such a responsible and smart person. After I told one of my friends she told me that he might be AS! so i started doing some research online and everything made sense and much of these stories here are similar to mine. I have not reached out to him and i told him i respected his decision but i'm really hurt. I'm glad to have learned more about this as i was a complete ignorant on the whole AS. I really hope he finds his happiness and gets diagnosed.
But in the end emotions and relationship was all I ever talked about. I wanted us to work on the relationship. He just wanted everything to be fine. "As long as you are happy, everything is fine" he said. He started to spend less and less time with me. And there we had entered the evil circle. I got more and more emotional and he spent less and less time with me. In the end I realized this. He doesn't understand what I am talking about. It's tiering, confusing and uninteresting to him. Too bad that is what it takes to make a relationship work. If I had to learn computing or to do mental calculations to keep him happy and to make our relationship work, I think I would experience it the same way as he does. I would try hard because I love him, and I would keep trying, but seeing him going more and more unhappy with my efforts, would make me really think that I was doing it all wrong, that I would never be able to do it and after some months I too would be exhausted. My brain is simply not good at calculating and every time I need to use a calculator he says to me, oh come on, that is really easy, you just do it so and so. But I get a headache and tell him to stop. I asked him if it wasn't the case that he found emotions and relationships just as hard, and he said yes. So when I started again with my emotional talk, I stopped, looked at him and said: you don't understand what I am talking about, do you? I said that was true. We are still together, but I see him only once a month fr a couple of hours. They are nice, and I am am careful to make it nice for him. I hope he will be able to relax with me and want to spend more time with me if I just let him be. I have no idea how it will work out. Will it be like it was in the beginning? Probably not, and I don't want that either. There were a lot of misunderstandings and we didn't know what we know today. I just hope that we can enjoy each other again. And maybe even more with more knowledge. But I am sure there will be a lot of emotions in the future no matter what. My feelings can be overwhelming and in those moments I tend to forget everything I know. I am so happy that knowledge exist though, and the Internet. We are not alone, we know it is sometimes too difficult, and that we need not put all the blame on ourselves. Cassandra's syndrome is something that partners of aspies can get, they suffer and noone understands why they should be suffering. In the end you feel that there is something wrong with you. Thank you all for sharing. I am also interested in hearing more about the aspies' view on this. Help us NTs to understand how this all seems to you. You wonderful people, I like your mindset, there are many advantages to it, and I hate the fact that I react so emotionally out of lack of understanding. It took me about a year to trust that my boyfriend didn't want to hurt me and that he actually does love me. I thought for a long time that he was being abusive, selfish and uncaring. And then he was giving me more than he could handle. I wish I had known better.
This is, if anything, a cry for help.
I have been at loss more times than I can count. I am inlove, it’s a painful love with him.
Everything goes as he requests.
I feel controlled. I feel manipulated.
I am extremely loving and understanding. Maybe that’s why he keeps me around.
I want to ask about the possibility of Aspergers being misdiagnosed for sociopathic or narcissistic behaviour and if anyone has had experience with this?
He is extremely high achieving. Very verbally abusing. Better than me in social situations, incredible social skills.
I am lost
Can someone help me.
It's more common however for someone with narcissistic tendencies to attempt to identify as Asperger's. This might be for personal gain or simply because their responses to questions which should be based on the premise of "I don't know" seem the same when the premise is "I don't care".
If you're in a situation with someone who mistreats you and shows no interest in learning to be better and no remorse after a hurt has been identified, then you're not in a healthy relationship.
I once found myself at an after party with some skydiving friends from the local club plus a few visitors for the weekend. Anyway, a visiting female unbelievably asked me whether she could spend the night at my (sole occupant) flat. We ended up in my bed with underwear on. Needless to say my hormones were going through the roof. The next thing that happened as I started to make a move was her telling me that it woud ne "nice to cuddle", the implication being to my mind that sex was off the table. I spent the entire night awake with hormones dripping through the mattress and was finally grateful when daylight gave me an excuse to get up and dressed (ready to go jumping for the day without a wink of sleep!).
I drove her out to dropzone and ejoyed the usual day's activities.
A fewdays prior to that Christmas I received a Christmas card from her. I did not reply - you can imagine why.
A couple of week's later I saw her again at the 84/85 champ meet. She said to me that she had sent a card to everyone she could think of in the skydiving community in my country (and get this!), she told me in a chastising tone that I was the only one who had not replied to her card. I just walked away not knowing what to say. Some months later I left the scene altogether, decision I've since regretted. Thinking back to that night in my flat I simply couldn't do anything. I thought it would be tantamount to rape (time has not changed my thinking). Maybe she expected me to join with her but after what she said I couldn't I leave it to others reading this to imagine how painful that was for me and why circumspection became "my best friend". Any NTs reading this?