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The couple, both 52, from Coventry, realised Nick had Asperger's when their youngest son was diagnosed with the condition at the age of ten.
Maxine Aston is an author and therapist who specialises in marriage counselling for couples in which one or both partners has the condition.He was calm and even cracking jokes, which made me angry.But I know he wasn't being like that on purpose - it's simply how he is.'To many women, Samantha's frustration at her husband's insensitivity will sound all too familiar.'Our daughter Sophie is 18 weeks old, and I had an extremely difficult labour which resulted in an emergency Caesarean,' says Samantha, 41.'I was terrified, but Andy seemed unaffected by the danger.Samantha Puleston always felt her husband Andy lived in his own world.Even during the most emotionally charged moments of their relationship, he could appear oddly detached and preoccupied with irrelevant practical details.'He has had jobs where he's struggled because he sees no need to say hello to people every morning, for example - he feels if he's said it to someone once, what's the point in repeating it day after day.He has no concept of social niceties.' Joanna says: 'I've learned to be more direct when I'm speaking to Nick, and I've also found it easier to accept his behaviour for what it is.They often retreat - perhaps by spending hours on the computer, or leaving the house for a few days - which can send their wife into a state of confusion, assuming it's because of them.The men would love to make their wife happy, but they simply don't know how.'Many couples are referred to Maxine after counselling has failed.