I don't know how to help my husband who lives with severe pain every day. He is angry and irritable and I have so much on my plate taking care of him and my daughter that it feels like I can't handle anything more. We argue and bicker because we are both frustrated with the situation. I feel like he doesn't appreciate anything I do or how much I do for him. I don't want to lose him but it feels like he is pushing me away. I don't know what to do.
@ReenieG @oceangirl and all of you, thank you for sharing. Caring for someone with chronic pain, especially a loved one, is not easy. It is encouraging to hear that the two of you are learning to recognize a bad day and how to work through it. Communication is important in any relationship!
And maybe it would help to read some of the articles on our website that other posters have mentioned. Yes, keep going!
Hi msm - I am my husband's caregiver and can relate to your post. I am fortunate that hubby works very hard to not take his pain and frustration out on me but it does still happen. We have a great relationship but these last 2.5 years have really pushed us to a limit. We refuse to allow this to break us apart from one another - as this is when we need each other most.
I try to care for myself but that is so difficult when you have to work; take over the extras in the house plus deal with your emotional pain as well as theirs!
I am trying to learn that when he is having a bad day, I do not need to feed into it. I can be quiet and allow him a bad day. When we are both having bad days is when we run into troubles. We are learning to notice the mounting frustrations and not discuss big issues at these times. I think one of the most difficult things we are finding now is that we are both so "done" with this but it is not "done" with us! I guess we keep going . . .
This thread really resonated with me. My husband has been dealing with chronic pain for 5 years. He has had over 20 surgeries. Our marriage is at the breaking point. I will try some of the posted suggestions.
@msm i was reading some of the articles on here and i thought this one might be helpful for you and your husband.
hope you're ok.
@msm How's it going?
@msm So glad you can share here on the forum. You're right, everyone needs happy and positive moments in their life. You do too. It sounds like you need help--have you reached out to any professionals, friends or family? Can they help you care for your husband and give you a needed break once in a while? Have you tried sharing your feelings with your husband? @SCIpain's suggestion to try doing so in a caring way "When you..., I feel..." is a a good one. It's important to share your perspective too, and work together to reach understanding. Easier said than done, of course, but know that we are supporting you. Hang in there.
Can other forum members share some words of encouragement for @msm?
Today was a tough day he is very emotional and cries all the time. I know it sounds mean but sometimes you need happy and positive things. It feels negative all the time in the house and makes me hate coming home sometimes. I feel like a child who is helpless and has no say, he kinda tries to control everything whether i go out for dinner or to ee.....friends he was never like this before I don't know how much more I can take.
@msm I came across this article yesterday and I thought of you. Although I don't know if you live where this app is available, something like this might be helpful: A woman from Vancouver created an app for parents (or caregivers, or anyone, really) to ask for help, and get it. Maybe there is something like this available in your community? http://www.straight.com/life/681176/tedxeastvan-dr-alexandra-greenhill-will-show-how-easy-it-ask-helping-hand
If you live in BC, Canada, you might also want to get in touch with Connect for Health. They help people in pain and their families beyond the doctor's office with the other "stuff of life" so to speak. https://www.painbc.ca/chronic-pain/connect-for-health
Take care of yourself too, and hang in there.
Thank you so much for the help so far. Things have been better for the last couple days, I'm trying so hard to be caring and understanding of his pain, but sometimes I'm so tired it is hard to see clearly. I feel so helpless and angry like why did this happen to us and as hard as it is for him to be in pain and un able to do things, I'm able to do things and still can't because I work so much to support us and helping him leaves very little time. I want to help and be compassionate but sometimes it feels like it is never ending. Am I a bad person for feeling this way.
In another part of my life we joined a parenting group some years ago. Think support for people that worry too much about their kids. Anyway, strangely, even though it has been very helpful for the kids, I have found it even more useful in relationship with my partner. This one thing helped me more than anything: "When you....., I feel......" That's it. Name the action, say how you feel. I don't know what else to say. I have really crappy days with pain, and I've been pretty dismissive or mad at times, but if my partner says that to me it somehow reminds me it's not all about me, even if I want it to be all about me right now.
Hi msm. That must be very hard for you to deal with every day. This forum is a good place to share some of these frustrations and get help from others in similar situations. You are not alone!
Does anyone have good strategies for caring for someone in pain and maintaining one's own life balance? Or can anyone share another perspective, maybe some stories from the receiving end of care?