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Dr. Olsen
Dr. Olsen, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  PsyD Psychologist
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I think my husband has Aspergers Syndrome. He is 64 years

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I think my husband has Asperger's Syndrome. He is 64 years old and we have been married for 34 years. It has not been easy for me for most of the time. We are in terrible financial shape even though he worked as Chemical Engineer for the DoD for 37 years. Now that he is retired things are even worse. He spends all of his time on his computer and in front of the TV. We have had our house up for sale for the past year and he still does not understand why potential buyers are turned off by the cluttered (loaded with junk) garage and barns and the totally neglected outbuildings and property. When I suggest hiring someone to do the work he says that we can't afford it. This is the least of our problems actually. He is in a court case with the IRS amongst other things. I don't know who to turn to for help. Psychologist or psychiatrist?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 5 years ago.
Hi,
Thank you for writing in JustAnswer.
I'm sorry to hear about your husband's situation.
It sounds like you may not rely on your husband.
Let me ask you a few questions first.
Does he exhibit depression?
How are his sleep and appetite?
Please let me know by clicking on “Reply” and I will then craft my response.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Warm Regards,
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

His sleep is quite erratic and always has been. He often falls asleep early in the evening and then wakes up at 2 or 3am and stays awake for several hours and then goes back to sleep. He has been sleeping downstairs on the recliner/loveseat exclusively for the past 3-4 years. Throughout our marriage he would end up on the couch several nights a week.

His appetite is fine, but he eats a lot of junk food - chips, soda, fries, burgers. He claims he is trying to lose weight, but doesn't stay with it.

What would the symptoms of depression be?

Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 5 years ago.
Hi there,
Thank you for your reply.
It sounds like he may have Asperger's.

If he is depressed, he may have more or less the following symptoms:

You may feel sad and hopeless. You may lose interest in the things you enjoy. You may feel guilty. You may criticize and dislike yourself. you may feel worthless. You may have suicidal thoughts. You may cry. You may have difficulty making decisions. You may have less energy. You may be tired often. You may have sleep difficulty or tend to oversleep. You may get irritable. Your appetite may be less or greater than usual. You may have concentration difficulty. You may lose interest in sex.

Again, he seems to have Asperger's syndrome.
If he has depression or anxiety, medication may help his mood and behavior.

I would advise your husband to see a psychologist for assessment.
Cognitive-behvaior therapy (CBT) will work for depression and anxiety if he has mood problems such as depression or anxiety.

You may ask his doctor for a psychologist that he can work with weekly. Or you may call his insurance company and get a list of providers in your area.

Or, you can search a licensed psychologist on internet- such as the PSYCHOLOGY TODAY website. Go to (http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/ppc/prof_search.php?iorb=4764) and enter your zip code and optional category of specialty such as Autism/Asperger's. Read psychotherapists’ profile to see if he or she has the specialty. You may also want to create your mental image of psychotherapist that he wants to work with – Male or female? To note, many therapists offer initial consultation for free. So he can see it as an informational meeting. He and you can ask any question and negotiate psychotherapy fee.

If he has no health insurance or seeks a low fee counseling, you or he may call The United Way toll free # XXXXX (Dial 2-1-1)to find the community mental health centers in your area in which he can get counseling even without health insurance.

This is very challenging for you to deal with his condition as you may not rely on him for practical matters.
You may work with his doctor, a psychologist (if he works with), a marriage therapist, and/or family for support and help.

Please let me know if you have more questions or I have overlooked any. Warm regards,

P.S. Please remember to click the green ACCEPT button. You do not get charged twice; I will continue to answer your question whenever I am back online; my goal is to get you the best answers possible. If I can be of further help with any issue, just put "for Dr. Olsen" in the front of your new question. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

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