As I’ve alluded to before, I have a sibling with Asperger’s, formerly delineated separately from the autism spectrum. The idea of autism is not new to me, especially since the diagnosis of Asperger’s was relatively new when my brother was diagnosed. What I’m saying is, I’m familiar with this subject material. I was curious to see how David Finch would handle this memoir and illuminate his audience on his personal insights. As it turns out, the read was frustrating and often unfulfilling, but not for reasons I expected.
It starts when Finch’s wife Kristen gently asks him to consider getting tested for Asperger Syndrome, just as their marriage has reached an all-new low point. Finch realizes that hmm, maybe his quirkiness doesn’t come from nowhere, that maybe he’s always viewed the world differently and perceived it unlike others. Along with his diagnosis is his determination to be a better and more loving husband and father. Oh, yeah. Did I mention that in the midst of their marital troubles, these two jokers produced TWO children? Don’t get me started on that. The novel is the “hilarious” chronicle of Finch’s journey to be a better husband and to understand how his Asperger’s makes his personal life more interesting and complicated.
To say I did not care for this book is to be generous. I get the premise of the book, and the book club discussion I went to softened me a bit. But the Type A personality in me went CRAZY over the way Finch and his wife lived their life. I am SORRY, but when it is 9 o’clock at night, you should already have been preparing or eating your food, not suddenly deciding that you want tacos only to discover 20 minutes in that, oh no, we don’t have taco cheese, and Dave HAS to go to the store to get some.
That’s not Asperger’s, that’s just bad adulting on BOTH SIDES. There were plenty of marital issues that Kristen had just as much stake in as Dave, and I got annoyed plenty of times when they would both place a burden on HIM that required just as much buy-in from HER. Needless to say, I hope those kids got counseling. As well as their children. Good gravy. You might enjoy this book more than I did, but I found it too annoying and stressful to find it remotely funny.
Cross-posted to my blog.