Discovered I have autism at 50 then found the love of my life

Anita and her husband dancing slowly, almost huggingI’m pleased to introduce Anita Lesko, who shares with us today how badly she wanted to find love before she knew she had autism, and how knowing her diagnosis may have made it easier. She found love with someone who also happens to live with autism, and their love story is breathtaking. Get a chance to talk to Anita and her husband in tomorrow’s Twitter chat on autism and relationships. #AskEasterSeals


To Us, Every Day is Valentine’s Day

By Anita Lesko

Being autistic makes our Valentine’s Day more special than most people could ever understand.  How could this be, you are thinking!  We live in what I sometimes call the “throwaway society.” People don’t seem to take relationships very seriously.  Infidelity, breakups, and divorce have become very commonplace.  It’s all the rage in Hollywood and reality TV shows, and plastered on magazine covers of the latest scandal.  I think this is all very sad.

Abraham and I love to spend hours talking, sharing our innermost thoughts and feelings with each other.  We both have spent our lives wishing, hoping, dreaming, of one day finding that special someone who would understand and accept us.  We’ve both been bullied, harassed, tormented, even threatened, because we are different.  We’ve both experienced extreme loneliness, lying in bed crying ourselves to sleep in the darkness.  The possibility of ever finding a mate seemed like only a dream.

I dreaded to go to restaurants on Fridays and Saturdays, traditional “date nights.”  There, everywhere I’d look, were couples hugging, talking, laughing.  All the very things I couldn’t seem to do, yet I didn’t know why.  After getting diagnosed with autism at age 50, at least I then knew why I was so socially inept.  The desire for a special someone still burned within me.

One day, at one of my Autism Support Group meetings, in walked my future husband.  Of course I didn’t know this on that fateful day!  He caught my eye, not just because he was tall, dark, and handsome.  There was something in his eyes that when I looked at him, I felt an overwhelming sense of peace and comfort.  I had never felt such a connection before.  We became friends that day, and our friendship grew stronger over that following year.

One beautiful crisp evening under a full moon, Abraham hugged me for the first time.  It was so magical, so intense, so delicious.  We both knew at that moment that we never wanted to let go of each other. I couldn’t tell where my body ended and his began.  We were united as one.  We found our special someone, and we didn’t want to let go.
We treasure our relationship so deeply, for it is something we both dreamed of yet thought we’d never find.  We take care of each other, watch over each other. It’s truly beautiful.  We can’t stand to be apart, which the only time we are is when we’re at work.  The rest of the time we are together, our little team as we call it!

To us, every day is Valentine’s Day.  We take time each day to do special things for each other, and share moments that we savor for the times we must be apart.  This Valentine’s Day, we woke up before sunrise, sat together, side by side, on a bale of hay and watched the sun rise, with steaming coffee in our hands, and gentle kisses.  Absolute bliss.

Get the details about the Twitter chat on love and relationships, featuring Anita and others, and also find more love stories with disability in the mix at


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  1. Nancy Says:

    Oh my goodness! I’m so happy for both of you. I wish the same for my son Jeremy some day 😀

  2. Diane Says:

    I want to thank Anita Lesko for sharing her story of finding love. My daughter has Autism Spectrum Disorder and I have wondered if she will find love one day. She shows interest in boys, but it is difficult for her to maintain relationships. Your story gives me hope that she may someday be able to find her true love.

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