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How to discuss LD in a dating situation


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Joined: Dec 16, 2010
Posts: 3
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Posted Dec 16, 2010 at 6:22:59 PM
Subject: How to discuss LD in a dating situation

I recently started dating a guy who I believe has a LD. When we text, some words are jumbled, left out, etc. He has told me where he lives, & it is an apartment complex for people with disabilities (I looked it up on the internet). I really like this guy, but I don't know how to discuss this with him. We have no issue talking to each other in general, but this is something new to me. I want to understand & support him- I just don't know if I should be the one to bring this up (he hasn't), & if I do, how do I go about it? Any advice would be appreciated.

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Mandi
Joined May 05, 2008
Posts: 424

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Posted:Dec 19, 2010 8:34:06 AM

It is clear you have the best of intentions towards this guy.

But, having LD means you always have to struggle to meet other people's completely arbitrary deadlines for when you should be doing this that or the other thing. No matter what the cost in effort and emotional pain to you. Because that is just the standard that society demands.

He will tell you eventually when things get serious enough for him to feel comfortable with it.

Don't bring it up. It will only wreck a very nice relationship. He will never be able to feel like you love him again rather than feeling that you pity him or are trying to manage him or whatever.

We all need someone who we can escape from society's arbitrary standards with a bit. It seems he has chosen you to do that with. Until it gets really really serious no reason for him to say a word. If you do, you will ruin something he very well may have never had before. Someone who loves him who isn't trying to force him to do things to make society happy. Someone who just loves him for who he is rather than the baggage he has no choice but to carry around with him.

For now, the best thing you can do is just not say a word.

I would say this is one, where if you give him enough time he will eventually tell you.

I am married I have LD i manage a household in a foreign country speak many languages have a university level education and am discussing children with my husband. My point is, the reality is, we are no different from anyone else. We just want to live normal lives. Do things when they feel right to us. We have generally been crapped all over by society and having someone we love bring it up, can make us feel judged again. And it really hurts then coming from someone who loves us who just doesn't think we are normal.Even if they do. There is just no real way to say something like that to someone who this ld crap has obviously emotionally injured enough for them to not be open about it, and have it not sound like a judgement or pity or belittling even if that is the last thing in the world meant by bringing it up.

My advise is, let him have as much time as he likes. He will tell you when he is ready. When he feels secure nothing will change between you and when he thinks you won't say oh my freak! and run away screaming or spit at him or something. You sound very nice and i don't believe for a heart beat you would ever do any of those things. But most of us have been through it with so many different people in our lives... Even our parents that, often telling someone we care about stuff like this is really hard. And we have to make sure. Because at some point too, you 2 could break up and you would then know his deepest darkest secret, i am not saying you would but simply by knowing you could, tell all the other important ppl in his life that treat him like a normal human being and that could wreck a whole lot more for him. Telling you is a risk.

He doesn't want to hurt you. To make you feel like you are getting something less than others. It likely kills him inside that the whole world sees him that way.

For now the best way to support him is to not say a word and to wait. See where things go. When things start to get very serious, you can start talking about some of this stuff or he more likely will. Because he will think a life partner of some sort would have every right to know the strengths and weaknesses that he is bringing to a very long term perminant relationship. My husband knows i am completely dyslexic. He knows i hae no math skills. He knows everything about me. But i didn't tell him after dating him a few months. I told him when we were moving in together. I knew he had figured it out some time before. How could he not? But he just kept seeing me for who i was rather than for what my disability was. The only person perhaps in my life who has seen me this way. And eventually we got married. He does the math manages the checkbook, I clean the house cook dinner, care for the dogs, and do our talking here since he speaks no german. He has been a really good choice for me because he is strong in all the areas that i am weak in. So at some point you may have to pick up some tasks in their entirity like my husband does in our relationship while i pick up everything else that i am able to do. Then there is no reason for anyone in the relationship to be thought of as disabled and it all works out.

Just tell him you like him. Just help him understand that you see him rather than a disability. That is how you can help him.

Sometimes not talking about something is best. Being with someone with LD isn't an easy task. It really does take strength and perseverence and non judgemental position on most everything. You will have to grow the ability to let things go sometimes.

There is no way you can ever understand him. The best you will ever be able to do is to imagine what his life has been like. And trust me, you will only manage to imagine about a 10th of the pain and turmoil he has been through. And perhaps a 20th of the judgement he has been on the losing side of. It's hard to be with someone like that long term. Someone who life is always incredibly unfair to and usually even cruel to. Is that something you are prepared for?

The fact is though, that those who go through life like that tend to know the most pain and so we also have the capacity for the most compassion. Which is probably one of the things that draws you to him so strongly. Hold onto that and just let go of the LD stuff for now and wanting to know about it. The LD industry turns us all into miniature freakshows science experiments. The last thing we want is someone else trying to get into our head. Most of us just want a little space and normal lives.

My advice is don't remind him he is different there is no kind or gentle way to say something like that to someone who has been through enough to not mention it thus far on his own. He will tell you on his own time something he is likely finally able to have a little bit of being a grown up.

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abbyg
Joined Dec 16, 2010
Posts: 3

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Posted:Dec 23, 2010 6:58:48 PM

Thank you so much for replying to my post Mandi, it has given me a lot of insight & perspective. I am going to continue enjoying his company & getting to know him. He is a really nice guy. He will tell me in time, when he is ready- it's not my place to bring it up.

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Mandi
Joined May 05, 2008
Posts: 424

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Posted:Dec 23, 2010 7:37:27 PM

If things get very serious at some point and he still isn't telling you.... Then there is a real problem. Not because he has LD, but because he has a character flaw related to honesty and sharing and communication. If so, then he really is not going to be settle down life partner material with or without LD for really anyone. You have every right to know before things get super serious just what is going on and what the load is you are going to have to haul in such a long term relationship. If he isn't telling you at that point, by all means ask him whats up. Till then just enjoy the time. I hope he does tell you in time. Because he is an idiot if he doesn't realize what a good thing he has which again is just a character flaw and has nothing to do with LD.

Not everyone would take the time or put in the effort to ask the question and no everyone would be sensitive enough to even formulate the question or to really understand my answer. So, he is very lucky. Someday i hope you get the chance to tell him about just how lucky. But wait for him and if it gets really serious and still no mention, drop him like a hot potato. No woman needs a dishonest man, ld or no ld. And i am not saying he is dishonest i am just saying there are those out there with ld and without ld who will never come at you straight. I strongly doubt he is such a person, but ya can't tell until you can tell.

It's not that it isn't your place... It is that if you bring it up you change the entire dynamic and you set off a chain reaction of thoughts and insecurities that got hrough his mind. He has seen it over and over people find out he is different and suddenly.... He is no longer the person they think he is even if he has not changed at all. Some people still see us for who we really are but how do we know for sure? We aren't in their head with them thinking their thoughts... It is just asking opens a whole ugly can of worms that it seems to me at this stage he likely is not interested in opening. At some point to be an honest person he is gonna have to. Because you have every right to know what serious junk you are getting into ahead of time. And you 2 are going to have to work through the issues and insecurity to stand a chance at working out long term. Still, it is best i think if he brings it up. Really good luck to you.

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abbyg
Joined Dec 16, 2010
Posts: 3

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Posted:Dec 25, 2010 8:42:39 AM

You are so right Mandi- no person deserves to be with a dishonest person. I have just came to the realization that there is a big difference between what you choose for yourself and what you know you deserve. I am used to dishonest, head games men. But I had to realize that this is what I was picking for myself before I could change the pattern. He is not like them- he is a wonderful person who is probably the polar opposite of what I am usually with. And I like that. I hope someday he does tell me. Until then, I will just enjoy being with him and see where this goes. Its really nice to talk to you out here, you are a very smart woman who has really helped me out. I appreciate it. I hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas!
[Modified by: abbyg on December 25, 2010 08:43 AM]

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geodob2
Joined Jun 12, 2009
Posts: 41

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Posted:Dec 26, 2010 1:14:33 AM

Abbyg, he could be on another forum, asking much the same questions? Should I tell her and if I do, how will I explain it? It is difficult to know how someone will react?

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Judy Hanning
Joined Dec 22, 2010
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Posted:Jan 25, 2011 9:24:31 AM

Just be yourself and be honest about how you feel about him and who knows, he might feel the same way.

Good luck!

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Marycv
Joined Jan 23, 2013
Posts: 13

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Posted:Mar 01, 2013 3:29:19 PM

I doubt he would bring it up that he has learning challenges, it would be quite difficult to discuss. I agree with Judy Hanning, you should be honest with him and be your self. As how to start it, maybe research a little about learning disabilities, and mention what you've been reading. He would realize you care about him, this may help him to open up. Another option is to mention what you notice about him, and indicate you care and want to help him. Once you start to discuss this, maybe this will bring you two closer. Good luck!

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