I don't know how much longer I can cope with this

For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
MrsAverage wrote:
Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:01 pm
Stepping back isn't cruel, it's self preservation for you and opportunity for him
I keep telling myself that. We have all been so focused on his problems for so long it's like he's the only person who matters now. I don't feel important to him unless I'm of use.

Recently I've been having terrible pains and aches in my hands, I type for a living so am guessing it's RSI. I'm seeing a physio tomorrow and have been eating ibuprofen like sweeties :D I told him I had a physio appointment for my hands and he didn't even ask why. Last night he saw me take a painkiller and asked if my back was sore (I have a back problem following an accident years ago) I said "no :roll: my hands!" and he literally just said oh and walked away :blink:

Our son had an OT review this week (he has additional needs) and DH hasn't asked anything about it. He takes very little interest in DS's needs and just assumes I deal with it all - which of course I do, he's my son.

I know his MH makes him push us away. I know he pretty much lives with headphones on so he can live in his own little world. But seriously he even eats dinner with his headphones on watching his laptop. I suppose I should be glad he's eating at all :dry: It gets lonely.
Hi Joanna,
We all know that stepping back is the right thing to do. But it's hard, real hard.
And desperately lonely. Sometimes all I want is a real hand to hold.

A couple of years ago I made the conscious decision to really put myself and my daughters first. I went out with colleagues each month and stayed out late, ignoring the desperate phone calls and messages. I actively ignore all the tantrums and demands.
We always eat at the table. My wife is free to join us, and to join in the chat and stuff. But she doesn't get any attention if she sits there sulking. And if she wants to eat in another room she is free to do so, but she has to take her meal and cutlery there herself. And now that the rules are clear, mealtimes are much less stressful.
I feel so much better able to cope now, despite everything going on around me. Obviously my wife isn't happy about all this, but she wasn't happy anyway!

My decision also gave my eldest daughter the strength to sort out her MH issues (consequences of being a young career, sadly).
My eldest daughter has left home now, and I miss her adult company. So much.

I suppose all I would say is really, really make time for yourself. Be "naughty" and break a rule or two (not the really important rules though!). Eventually, you will be stronger and happier.
But don't give in. You and your son MUST come first.
I agree with Just Enough fully.

MH issues do tend to make the sufferer very self centred which is why any carer has to work doubly hard at looking after their own mental, emotional and physical well being. it becomes even more important to build and maintain external support from family and friends and even work. Counselling can help too, especially when things get too much, as they do.
From what you say about hubby, has anyone suggested he may have autistic characteristics and/or depression? Both might be worth considering as one could invoke a change in approach, the other can be helped by medication.

All I know is it was only by looking after myself that I didn't go under . It came very close at times but I had to be strong for me

MrsAverage wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:42 pm
has anyone suggested he may have autistic characteristics and/or depression? Both might be worth considering as one could invoke a change in approach, the other can be helped by medication.

My boy has SPD and it's clearly inherited from his dad and grandad! DH accepts he has SPD but doesn't then do anything about it, he vapes constantly with headphones on and has a lot of other issues. I'm sure he also has depression and anxiety, partly due to circumstance and I'm sure also partly due to untreated SPD (his parents basically gave up on him when they realised he was different and focused on his 2 younger siblings) Whereas DS is really on the ball about giving himself the right sensory input when he needs it, he's only 7 and manages his sensory needs much better than DH who is 39 :roll:
Just enough wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 10:38 am
We all know that stepping back is the right thing to do. But it's hard, real hard.
And desperately lonely. Sometimes all I want is a real hand to hold.
This. This has me crying :cry: I can't remember the last time he held my hand. Or kissed me. At night if I kiss him goodnight he offers me his cheek or even his forehead if he's got his screen in front of him. Does my head in so I often don't bother. My mum's cancer recently moved on a step and I was upset, he spoke to me sympathetically but I had to actually ask for a hug and it was the most awkward thing ever when I got it. He's never been a fan of public affection but he hardly touches me any more. I feel like a leper!
You are NOT a leper! You are doing your best in every trying circumstances, and have been for a long time so no wonder you feel a bit frayed at the edges. You need more support and it sounds like its unlikely to come from DH currently.
Have you got a good friend, or sister or cousin perhaps you can open up to?

Meanwhile this so the best I can do, a big virtual hug
A few things I have found help me over the last couple of years:
Try and dress nicely every single day. And if you don't, doesn't matter.
Wear a nice fragrance every day. And have different ones for different moods.
One food-treat each week - mine is often bacon sandwich.
Find those colleagues/ friends who give you a hug on meeting you.
And those who shake hands...
It's also amazing how many people use innocuous little touches when you start looking..
Find those people. Those little innocent touches are so, so important because there is no agenda to them.
I also occasionally take chocolates or biscuits or even a bowl of fruit into work and leave it at the end of my desk for people to help themselves. It's amazing how many "thank you"s I get! It makes me feel really good about myself, but it makes people come to me.

Have "you" time.

When my wife is well, she appreciates many of those things. But really, I'm doing them for me.
I do too. Try to dress well most days. May have a joggers and older top if definitely staying in, and make up free. Otherwise it's my favourite signature perfume clothes that blend together, bit of makeup and hair kempt. Nothing glamorous, but I feel better. I heard a nasty remark on the bus, a few years ago ( before my husband's demise). One woman said to another, about a lady who's husband was in a nursing home, " wonder why she bothers, you wouldn't think her husband was ill". Well why shouldn't she? Why shouldn't we?
Just wish I had the same motivation about the chores in my home!!
Honestly I nearly asked him to leave today. I told him it’s like living with a thundercloud in the house and I have a right not to be yelled at in my own home. I also told him he shouldn’t take his anger and stress out on his wife and 7 year old child.
He told me I breeze through life and have no idea.
Yeah. Cause juggling him, a kid with additional needs, a mum with cancer, a job that pays all the bills and the housework is a breeze. :shock:
Joanna, are you nearly reaching the end of this relationship? Please find a counsellor to talk through the options with, in confidence.