This man is killing me. I am so very, very sleep-deprived. Not because of my work, not because of the kids, not because I stay up too late watching telly but because of him.
Either he's getting up at 03.30 for work which, granted, he can't do anything about (although he does insist on having a shower every morning at this time which often wakes up Sam as his head is basically next to the shower, with just a thin bit of plasterboard between). Or, if he's not getting up at 03.30 for work, he does what he did this morning: the second he hears the boys stirring, he jumps out of bed and checks whether suns have appeared on their alarm clocks. If not, they're ordered back to bed. This is followed ten minutes later by the same thing, then the same thing, then the same thing.
This morning it went on at about ten minute intervals from 05.55 'til 06.35 - culminating in a heated exchange between us which ruined any chance of me getting back to sleep.
The issue is that the boys have these alarm clocks which illuminate a sun when they're allowed to get up. The problem is that Ethan sticks to this rule with absolute rigidity. He doesn't make any allowances for life.
So this morning when the boys got up and Ethan saw the time and realised the boys' suns weren't on, he jumped out of bed and ordered them back into theirs. He forgot that the boys went to bed nearly an hour earlier than usual last night so were awake earlier this morning. At 06.15 when they tried to get up again, he sent them back to bed again - more angrily this time! If it occurred to him that they were wide awake, had been for twenty minutes and that all this process was doing was keeping us (me and him) awake, he didn't show it.
By 06.30, the boys had been awake for 35 minutes, they'd been in bed for 11.5 hours, they were completely, totally and unmistakably AWAKE and were being forced to lie in bed - because a picture wasn't on a clock! Ethan was unmoved: no sun, no getting up. 'It's the principle', he told me.
And I get it. I know why, from his point of view, he had to wait for the sun, even though, in practical terms, it made no sense. I know things are black and white for him. I know flexibility is verging on impossible. But life's not like that. I'm happy to stick to my guns & not back down with the kids when it's needed. But I also see the need to back down & adapt rules sometimes if circumstances demand it. Ethan doesn't. Which makes him really difficult to live with.
The off-shot of it all is that we had a row (at 6.30am!) & I've had another rubbish night of only a few hours sleep while he switched off from it all and went back to sleep until I woke him up at 07.45 with a cup of tea.
I don't mean to be a whinging old bag or be smugly superior about how perfect I am (I'm far from it) but the injustice of it all & the brain-crushing, debilitating tiredness is creating a quiet desperation inside me.
What am I going to do with this totally rigid, inflexible man who can't see common sense or adapt to circumstances?
I must add that he did say sorry when he did wake up. And, when I got home from work today, he'd cleaned the whole house - because he couldn't stand the mess. Which just goes to show, there are some benefits to being married to a man with Aspergers!