Gracefully Navigating the Maze of Neurodiverse Marriage
Uniquely Us explores the complicated connection between Autism, Marriage, and Faith and provides a path forward for the Neurodiverse Couples working together in this journey.
Uniquely Us is designed to educate clergy, coaches, chaplains, and counselors on the nuances and complexities of working with NeuroDiverse Christian Couples.
Featuring experts in the fields of Marriage, ADHD, Autism, Life Coaching, and more!
Dr. Stephanie and Dan Holmes are innovators in their pioneering work of understanding and bringing healing to NeuroDiverse Christian marriages. They bring a strong integration of neuroscience, Scripture, and practical wisdom to all of us. Their honesty about their own 29-year neurodiverse marriage journey is refreshing and brings hope. As a seasoned marriage therapist of 25 years, and now coach, who has also worked with Autism Level 1 for the past 10 years, I have learned a great deal by reading this book. I immediately began applying their wisdom to the couples and individuals that I see in my clinical practice. Couples and clinicians alike will be blessed by this book.
Dr. W. Jesse Gill, Psy.D., Licensed Psychologist
Author of Face to Face: Seven Keys to a Secure Marriage
Relational joy is easily the most important factor in brain development. Joy is just as important for those with neurodiversity but the pathway to joy may be less flexible. When brains are misattuned, people become irritable and discouraged. Synchronicity matters! Dr. Holmes uses research and experience to provide the critical balancing factors that nurture a joyful and peaceful togetherness in neurodiverse couples and families.
Dr. E. James Wilder
Neurotheologian and Life Model theoretician of Life Model Works; International speaker, author and co-author of multiple books that intersect neuroscience and theology, including Escaping Enemy Mode & Joy Starts Here, and The Other Half of Church
One of the major discoveries in brain science involves the concept of neuroplasticity, which means our brain can change, adapt, and reorganize under the right conditions. As someone who has trained relational brain skills for nearly 25 years, this is good news! All neurotypes can grow new relational skills and improve relationships. Some intentionality and collaboration goes a long way to increase joy and transform bonds of fear to bonds of love and delight. This brings me to Uniquely Us. Here we have a rich treasure trove that adds much-needed clarity to neurodiversity, a topic that is greatly misunderstood. The lack of understanding around neurodiversity and faith can lead to immense pain and hardship for couples and families who are navigating life with ASD and ADHD. Uniquely Us is a goldmine of wisdom, research, stories and experience that will clarify, instruct, enlighten and encourage. This important work will untangle confusion around neurodiversity, neuroplasticity, autism, and more. We now have a much-needed resource that brings clarity and hope for couples with neurodiverse marriages.
Chris M. Coursey
President of THRIVEtoday, Author of The Joy Switch
Dr. Stephanie Holmes asks and answers critically important questions on the intersection of faith and neurodiverse marriages. It is not unusual for legalistic and rigid misunderstandings about Scripture to make a dysfunctional marriage even more difficult and for there to be harm when it results in a spouse being deprived of effective tools to deal with the problems in a healthy way. This is magnified in neurodiverse Christian marriages where the AS partner interprets Scriptures and teachings in an even more literal, black-and-white, inflexible, and rule-based way that increases the likelihood of abuse. I highly recommend this book to anyone who offers advice to ND/NT couples and to those who are in a neurodiverse marriage.
Karla Downing, M.A., Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Best-Selling Author of 10 Lifesaving Principles for Women in Difficult Marriages and founder of ChangeMyRelationship.com
Dr. Stephanie Holmes, Dan, and contributing authors have crafted a masterful edited text that not only conceptualizes the nature of autism but seeks to broaden perspective and create pathways of growth, knowledge, and healing for the self and couples. Research and techniques have traditionally centered around children and often present a singular self-focus of treatment, but the value of this text is the focus on adulthood and in the marital realm, which makes this text a true gift to the world.
Dr. Kevin B. Hull, Ph.D, LMHC, RPT, CGP
Associate Professor and Faculty Advisor, School of Behavioral Sciences at Liberty University
Meet the Authors
Rev. Dr. Stephanie C. Holmes
Rev. Dan Holmes
NeuroDiverse Christian Couple (NDCC) Coaches & Coaching Coaches of NDCCs
Stephanie and Dan Holmes write from lived experience as a NeuroDiverse Christian Couple (NDCC) as well as professional experience working with NDCCs. Their first book, written with their adult children, Embracing the Autism Spectrum: Finding Hope & Joy Navigating the NeuroDiverse Family Journey focuses on their parenting journey of neurodivergent children and discovering their own neurodiversity in marriage.
Uniquely Us is based on published research from later in life adult autism diagnoses and focuses on faith, marriage and autism. It then examines how neurodiversity and faith creates a complex relationship dynamic for NeuroDiverse Christian Couples. If you want to continue to learn about NDCCs, join Stephanie & Dan on their podcast, NeuroDiverse Christian Couples at www.christianneurodiversemarriage.com.
Charity and Jeremy Rochford
NDCC & Parent & Marriage Coaches
Jeremy has spent the past 15 years helping busy professionals lose weight and achieve their fitness goals by mentoring them through the same process he developed, and used, to lose 200lbs himself. He is a speaker/performer coach, weight loss mentor, and author of The Gospel According to Chubby. Charity spent most of her career in HR/Benefits and now spends her time as a costume mom and travel agent.
Jeremy and Charity, Team Rochford as they are affectionately known, are both certified Life Coaches, now specializing in individuals and couples. Having recently discovered Jeremy’s place on the spectrum, they’ve pivoted coaching efforts to help other neuro-diverse couples. They’re working to launch their website, NeuroFam, with additional offerings, later this year.
The couple was originally from western Pennsylvania, meeting nearly 25 years ago at the California University of Pennsylvania, where Jeremy studied Communications and Charity studied Psychology. They have spent time living states apart and learning to navigate a long-distance relationship, first while Charity was working at Walt Disney World in Florida and then while Jeremy was playing for Christian rock bands on the east coast and in Tennessee. They spent some of their early married years in eastern PA, then spent 10 years in Nashville before moving back to the Pittsburgh area in 2018. They now live in the 1990s with their 2 children in the suburbs of western Pennsylvania.
Robin Tate, MA, MA, BCC, CAS
Robin is a professionally trained coach with ten years of teaching experience. Her personal and professional experiences have provided her with an in-depth understanding of the strengths and challenges of Autistic/ADHD adults. As a proven life-long learner, she has earned a Master's of Science in Reading and a Master's of Arts in Counseling. She is credentialed as a Board Certified Coach (BCC), Associate Certified Coach (ACC), and a Certified Autism Specialist (CAS). With a focus on both individuals and their relationships, she has trained with The Peter M. Friedman Institute Neurodiverse Couples Institute and has completed Gottman Level 1 and 2 training. Her coaching approach is strength-based, client-centered, and rooted in her passion for providing each person with an individualized coaching experience.
Barbara Grant, MMFT
Certified Autism Specialist (CAS) & ND Couples Coach
Barbara Grant, MFT (Marriage & Family Therapy), CAS, NCC, is a Certified Autism Specialist (IBCCES) and certified Neurodiverse Couples Coach (AANE) She has been trained through the International Association of ND Christian Marriage. She has been coaching and offering Biblical counseling since 2005, working with individuals, couples, and groups. Her current coaching practice focuses on neurodiverse couples, individuals, and families and offers support groups for neurotypicals. Barbara enjoys people! She is neurotypical; her first marriage (of 20 years) was to a neurodiverse partner and has a neurodiverse adult child from that marriage. She brings a lifetime of experience, compassion, and understanding to all her clients and is becoming a significant voice in the growing dialog about how to best support and strengthen neurodiverse relationships.
Rev. Iris Knapp
Women’s Life Coach
Iris has over 50 years of ministry experience, now ministering as a Life Coach. She was raised Jewish and came to know Jesus as Messiah in 1969 during the “Jesus Freak” revival.
She is certified with Light University, AIFC Australian Institute of Family Counseling, Ministerial Licensed with IAOG International Assemblies of God Fellowship and ND Training with the International Association of ND Christian Couples. She has personal family ties to the autism spectrum.
Mary H. Jones, MD, FAAP
ASD Clinical Specialist & Life Coach
Dr. Mary Jones is a physician and PCCI-trained life and leadership coach. She is the mother of a child on the spectrum and in a neurodiverse Christian marriage.
She believes there is greatness in each of us, and is passionate about equipping and empowering women to reach their fullest potential.
Throughout her life and career, she has had the privilege of working to empower and equip women and girls to be their best selves.
Her vision is to see women living out their purpose and effecting change in their own spheres of influence.
Carol Reller, MS, SLP
Carol Reller has a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology as well as a Clinical Rehabilitative Services credential. She retired after 32 years working in the field of Speech and Language. Her first 11 years were spent teaching in a first-to-third grade classroom for children with severe disorders of language. The last 21 years she worked with preschool through high school as an itinerant therapist. Carol has been married to Greg for 33 years and they have three adult children. Asperger's was recognized in Greg after 25 years of marriage. She enjoys scrapbooking, hiking, reading, and tending to their 5 acres of land which includes a garden, orchard, and animals.