Autism & Marriage


#1

I'm a manager who works with special needs adults through a life skills program.

The two in question aren't catholic so it dosn't really matter in the end.

Neither of them will likely ever to be able to hold down a job that pays more than minimum wage. They can never drive. Its questionable that they could care for a child. However, they are both very intelligent....extremely high IQ's in some regard. And they're pretty good about following directions and operating within the rules of society. They have decent communication skills.

I'm curious if they could ligitmatly get married.


#2

Impossible to tell from so little data and without examining the individuals anyway.

Basically as long as they are willing and able to accept a permanent relationship on an exclusive basis and ordered towards procreation and the good of the spouses and not ignorant of it and they don't have a *grave lack *of discretion regarding any of that, and they have the use of reason regarding such a choice, they would be okay under a minimalistic interpretation of the restrictions in canon law, I think, the possible exception being the care for the child, but even so, you still say it's questionable rather that impossible.


#3

Since autism affects individual in such a varied way, and adults autists are at a wide variety of functioning levels, it's impossible to make a statement either way.

If they are more toward mildly affected or aspergers, I think it fairly common really, for those people to marry have children. Many people are autists, we just don't necessarily realize it.


#4

[quote="purplesunshine, post:1, topic:182149"]
I'm a manager who works with special needs adults through a life skills program.

The two in question aren't catholic so it dosn't really matter in the end.

Neither of them will likely ever to be able to hold down a job that pays more than minimum wage. They can never drive. Its questionable that they could care for a child. However, they are both very intelligent....extremely high IQ's in some regard. And they're pretty good about following directions and operating within the rules of society. They have decent communication skills.

I'm curious if they could ligitmatly get married.

[/quote]

I have a mentally and physically disabled sister.She needs 'care' as in she couldn't live
unsupported alone.She has a 'boyfriend' and they are 'engaged'.
If they ever actually did get married they would both need to live in care.
The boyfriend lives in a supported care house.He has a mental disabliity.

As her oldest sister and her carer (I am also her advocate and next of Kin)I work closely
with her boyfriend's Care Manager to establish boundaries of their dating.
My sister has often in the past talked about getting married.(They have been dating for 3 yrs).
They got engaged 2yrs ago.Neither of them understand the meaning of engagement
or marriage.I fear they would not be able to have a marriage as we know it as they would not understand.

In the case you mention purplesunshine I think it would depend on the indiviual abilities
of both parties


#5

[quote="shannyk, post:3, topic:182149"]
Since autism affects individual in such a varied way, and adults autists are at a wide variety of functioning levels, it's impossible to make a statement either way.

If they are more toward mildly affected or aspergers, I think it fairly common really, for those people to marry have children. Many people are autists, we just don't necessarily realize it.

[/quote]

Ok, Spectrum Momma stepping in :)

Just a note-- Asperger's is not autism. It is not "high functioning" autism either. When people say "The autism spectrum", thats actually a misnomer. It's the PDD Spectrum, of which Autism is the most widely recognized and severest disorder. (PDD stands for Pervasive Developmental Disorder)

So I'm assuming from your post that both people involved are TRULY autistic, in which case, I would have to question their ability to even live independently as adults? I suppsoe it could be possible for them to marry-- but are either of them wards of someone else? Wards of the state? Capable of making their own legal decisions? Sacramentally, I dont forsee an issue with it, but legally, perhaps t here is? And what about procreation-- if they are wards of the state, or of someone else, they are incapable of maintaining legal custody of any child they produce-- we adopted our daughter in a very similar situation. Her bio mom was a ward of the state and thus she was not able to retain custody, even temporarily, of her daughter (very sad and heartbreaking situation!).

Need more info to really say one way or another!


Edited to add: Yes, its very common for people with Asperger's to marry. In fact, many of them are doctors! Albert Einstein had Aspergers :)


#6

[quote="yellowdaisy, post:5, topic:182149"]
Ok, Spectrum Momma stepping in :)

Just a note-- Asperger's is not autism. It is not "high functioning" autism either. When people say "The autism spectrum", thats actually a misnomer. It's the PDD Spectrum, of which Autism is the most widely recognized and severest disorder. (PDD stands for Pervasive Developmental Disorder)

So I'm assuming from your post that both people involved are TRULY autistic, in which case, I would have to question their ability to even live independently as adults? I suppsoe it could be possible for them to marry-- but are either of them wards of someone else? Wards of the state? Capable of making their own legal decisions? Sacramentally, I dont forsee an issue with it, but legally, perhaps t here is? And what about procreation-- if they are wards of the state, or of someone else, they are incapable of maintaining legal custody of any child they produce-- we adopted our daughter in a very similar situation. Her bio mom was a ward of the state and thus she was not able to retain custody, even temporarily, of her daughter (very sad and heartbreaking situation!).

Need more info to really say one way or another!


Edited to add: Yes, its very common for people with Asperger's to marry. In fact, many of them are doctors! Albert Einstein had Aspergers :)

[/quote]

I'm not sure what you're getting at..........

Also a 'spectrum mom' here, of two ASD kids. And I work in the field. Every psychologist I work with considers aspergers a type of autism.

Besides I said mildly affects OR, I never suggested they are the same.

Autistic people marry as well.


#7

Im really really surprised that your psychologist would consider asperger’s a type of autism! I do realize its the commonly accepted vernacular by the general populace, however, it is very scientifically inaccurate. Our neurologist was the first person to explain the difference to us-- and upon further research, we corroborated that she is correct!

(side note-- spectrum mommas-- PLEASE see a neurologist in addition to your psychologist! We recieved differeing diagnosis from each and after much evaluation, the neuro was right. It’s a really good idea to have two sets of diagnosing eyes working together!)

Autism is a PDD. Asperger’s is ANOTHER PDD, Rhett’s is a third, Childhood Disintigrative Disorder is a fourth, and PDD-Not Otherwise Specified is the fifth. These are the catergories of the National Institute of Mental Health, officially.

What I’m “getting at” is simple-- to educate the general populace about Autism, and what IS and IS NOT autism. Aspeger’s is not autism. It’s not “high functioning” autism. It’s treated a LOT differently, and the prognosis are a lot different.

Many people (who are wrong) believe that the “autism spectrum” means that there are varying degrees of autism from mild to severe. While it is TRUE that there are varying degress of severeness, it is INACCURATE to place the other four PDD spectrum disorders into this mix. They are not autism.

So whenthe OP says that these people have autism, I have to assume he means true, Kanner’s Autism. In which case, it is very likely that the people in question do NOT live independently. Which thus raises my questions of whether or not they are able to make their own legal decisions. Etc etc…

I wasn’t implying anything about you or your children or your parenting. Just that your question represents common misconceptions about Autism and PDD Spectrum disorders. Perhaps in your part of the country, the mental health professionals use the common vernacular instead of hte scientific terms. In my part of the country, (or my county anyway), they do not.


#8

[quote="yellowdaisy, post:7, topic:182149"]
Im really really surprised that your psychologist would consider asperger's a type of autism! I do realize its the commonly accepted vernacular by the general populace, however, it is very scientifically inaccurate. Our neurologist was the first person to explain the difference to us-- and upon further research, we corroborated that she is correct!

(side note-- spectrum mommas-- PLEASE see a neurologist in addition to your psychologist! We recieved differeing diagnosis from each and after much evaluation, the neuro was right. It's a really good idea to have two sets of diagnosing eyes working together!)

Autism is a PDD. Asperger's is ANOTHER PDD, Rhett's is a third, Childhood Disintigrative Disorder is a fourth, and PDD-Not Otherwise Specified is the fifth. These are the catergories of the National Institute of Mental Health, officially.

What I'm "getting at" is simple-- to educate the general populace about Autism, and what IS and IS NOT autism. Aspeger's is not autism. It's not "high functioning" autism. It's treated a LOT differently, and the prognosis are a lot different.

Many people (who are wrong) believe that the "autism spectrum" means that there are varying degrees of autism from mild to severe. While it is TRUE that there are varying degress of severeness, it is INACCURATE to place the other four PDD spectrum disorders into this mix. They are not autism.

So whenthe OP says that these people have autism, I have to assume he means true, Kanner's Autism. In which case, it is very likely that the people in question do NOT live independently. Which thus raises my questions of whether or not they are able to make their own legal decisions. Etc etc...

I wasn't implying anything about you or your children or your parenting. Just that your question represents common misconceptions about Autism and PDD Spectrum disorders. Perhaps in your part of the country, the mental health professionals use the common vernacular instead of hte scientific terms. In my part of the country, (or my county anyway), they do not.

[/quote]

I'm not sure of their exact neurological diagnosis, I am only told enough to ensure their safety in my workplace and their academic and physical goals. None of the kids are not severely disabled to the point of non-function. They do, however, range from severe learning disabilities, mild/medium autistic, and brain damage.

The two in question are both are great people. They both have good language skills, for autistic people. You ask them a "prompt" question and get an honest answer, eg "How was your weekend" but you couldn't ask them if they liked the song on the radio (although they could likely identify the artist, where the artist was born, and every band member and instrument).

Good qualities aside. "Pete" is easily distracted, prone to loud outbursts, and isn't great handling money. "Jane" is good at handling money, "trainable" but sassy...hard to be patient with on occasion. They'd always need some sort of assistance...for long-term money planning, bill paying and to remind them that they needed new clothes or to help them through any transition.

However, as I mentioned, they are extremely intellegent about certian things. And I wondered if they lived 200 years ago if people really would of said much about it....they could of farmed and led a simple life without much interference from an outside guardian so long as they grew and did the same exact thing year to year and had someone who'd look out and make sure they were not cheated.


#9

[quote="yellowdaisy, post:7, topic:182149"]
Im really really surprised that your psychologist would consider asperger's a type of autism! I do realize its the commonly accepted vernacular by the general populace, however, it is very scientifically inaccurate. Our neurologist was the first person to explain the difference to us-- and upon further research, we corroborated that she is correct!

(side note-- spectrum mommas-- PLEASE see a neurologist in addition to your psychologist! We recieved differeing diagnosis from each and after much evaluation, the neuro was right. It's a really good idea to have two sets of diagnosing eyes working together!)

Autism is a PDD. Asperger's is ANOTHER PDD, Rhett's is a third, Childhood Disintigrative Disorder is a fourth, and PDD-Not Otherwise Specified is the fifth. These are the catergories of the National Institute of Mental Health, officially.

What I'm "getting at" is simple-- to educate the general populace about Autism, and what IS and IS NOT autism. Aspeger's is not autism. It's not "high functioning" autism. It's treated a LOT differently, and the prognosis are a lot different.

Many people (who are wrong) believe that the "autism spectrum" means that there are varying degrees of autism from mild to severe. While it is TRUE that there are varying degress of severeness, it is INACCURATE to place the other four PDD spectrum disorders into this mix. They are not autism.

So whenthe OP says that these people have autism, I have to assume he means true, Kanner's Autism. In which case, it is very likely that the people in question do NOT live independently. Which thus raises my questions of whether or not they are able to make their own legal decisions. Etc etc...

I wasn't implying anything about you or your children or your parenting. Just that your question represents common misconceptions about Autism and PDD Spectrum disorders. Perhaps in your part of the country, the mental health professionals use the common vernacular instead of hte scientific terms. In my part of the country, (or my county anyway), they do not.

[/quote]

I never said aspergers was autism.

people with Kanners DO in fact, develop and live independently, own cars and homes and have jobs and spouses, like my older brother, he's 39.

I've been a "spectrum mom" for 12 years now, so I've done the research too. But your little primer was probably helpful for others.

BTW I've seen neurologists, and about a zillion other professionals for my kids. I ve dozens of professionals in my home weekly. My DD is aspergers and my DS Kanners and fragile X. They are seen by the same docs and are both referred to as autistic. There are different types of autism just like there are different types of the flu, all flu, with different causes symptoms etc. It's not inaccurate to call them all flu though.


#10

[quote="shannyk, post:9, topic:182149"]

I never said aspergers was autism.

people with Kanners DO in fact, develop and live independently, own cars and homes and have jobs and spouses, like my older brother, he's 39.

I've been a "spectrum mom" for 12 years now, so I've done the research too. But your little primer was probably helpful for others.

BTW I've seen neurologists, and about a zillion other professionals for my kids. I ve dozens of professionals in my home weekly. My DD is aspergers and my DS Kanners and fragile X. They are seen by the same docs and are both referred to as autistic. There are different types of autism just like there are different types of the flu, all flu, with different causes symptoms etc. It's not inaccurate to call them all flu though.

[/quote]

"My little primer"? Wow...that was pretty condescending. I can tell that you're interested in arguing, and frankly Ive enough battles without fighting this one. I was only trying to help and inform people who might not know, what autism IS and IS NOT. Sorry if that rubbed you the wrong way-- CLEARLY it has. I'm goign to have to bottom line disagree with you that Asperger's children should be referred to as autistic. It's just not accurate. But we're going to have to agree to disagree.

We too have a revolving door of professionals in our home, so I can sympathize very much with everything you might have been through in those past long twelve years! Wishing you continued peace on your parenting journey.


#11

Not wanting to argue in the slightest. I just don't appreciate it being assumed I have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about. What you're arguing comes down to words, and it's really not that important and doesn't change much. The longer you are a 'spectrum mom' the more you will realize how malleable these terms and Dr.s opinions are. Autism just 10 years ago autism was a totally different thing and 10 before that even more so. A few Dr.s I know think PDD-NOS is a bunk DX altogether, yet some vehemently disagree. It's kind of like how one week eggs are bad for you and then the next they are healthy for you. Medical information, especially in the realm of psycho-neurology and mental health, is in a state of constant change. Not to mention how It will keep evolving I'm sure, but my kids will be the same people.

Also, it's a misconception that Kanners autists don't develop into functional people, at their own pace of course. It is a popular notion that if you do'nt 'get to them' by age 5 then all hope is lost and that just is NOT the case. That is why I originally said it depends on the individual.


closed #12

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