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Elderly husband -Carers UK Forum

Elderly husband

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Hi,
I am new today.

I have a husband in his early 70's who appears to have stopped doing anything at all. He always was laid back and rather lazy but now he is really perfectly happy for me to slave and run the house and our life completely.

I am frankly so tired. I am up at 6am daily and unable to keep my eyes open much beyond 9pm. On the go all day. Yes I am fit and well but my joints ache from the endless work.

Has anyone else got a husband whose health is not good but not that bad either who seems to think it is fine to be either in bed or in an armchair the whole time? He does not rise until lunchtime usually.

Let me add that for the past several weeks he has had infected eczema and a badly swollen leg. I know it has been awful for him but I have been continually cleaning up after him - vacuuming everywhere daily as he sheds skin, changing the entire bed frequently as he scratches till he bleeds. I also ensure he takes all his medications on time and I apply his creams. His skin has been truly appalling at times.

He just sits there and my back is breaking. I hate it all so much. I am certain he has other things very wrong with him as he has no energy or strength left, but he refuses to go for blood tests as they involve him getting up early and getting to the doctors. I feel he is just so self-centred although I understand how miserable he feels. He used to drink heavily and smoke, not so much now. Now he has steadied down but the damage is surely done. I just know he has some awful things wrong in him and this is only going to be worse.

I know there are so many people far worse off than me, I do have a lot to be thankful for. Yet this is my life and I am wondering what the future holds for me. I am only 50 years old, he is 72. I have no means of surviving on my own but I often yearn for my freedom. We have been married for 30 years and I am not sure I want to stay in this marriage at all. Yet I have nowhere to go.

On a positive note I have two staffies and they are my salvation as I adore them. Getting out for walks and chats with other dog-owners cheers and comforts me. Otherwise nobody really knows how sad I am feeling. I assume family and friends probably would not have sympathy with me as I chose to marry a man so much older than myself. We loved each other so very much but now all that seems a long long time ago. Life is just graft and coping, tiredness and frustration.
Hi Mandie

I have read through your post and I think myself there is something else going on with your husband. I have eczema too but I still carry on a full life, in fact I was a carer until lately for my father. My father was the opposite of your husband - he did not acknoweldge just how old he was and he would climb ladders and all sorts. He did not have dementia just physical illnesses.
I wonder too if maybe your husband has an "old head". My dad and his mother both had "young heads" and never acted old. There was another relative who was so old fashioned he seemed older than my dad when he was actually 25 years younger.
Your husband could be totally contented having you to do all the running around for him. Maybe you could ask the Dr to send out a Nurse to take bloods at home. Just make out that your husband will not leave the house.
I hope you get some help from the Surgery.

Duncaring
Hi Duncaring,
you speak a lot of sense, thankyou. Indeed my husband does have an 'old head'. He acts way older than his own parents did in their 70's - they used to be running around playing tennis, going out for meals and being very active. He just loves his bed and his armchair. I feel that such inactivity is the worst way to live. As for his blood tests, he can tell the doc himself on Friday! I am fed up of doing every little thing for him when he is perfectly capable of it.

You can see how angry and frustrated I am. I need to find positive things to focus on
Hi Mandie

I think there comes a time when an age difference becomes an issue. I think you feel a bit pulled in with his old ways and contentedness to sit around all day. 72 to still not very old and 50 is young these days. Could you arrange a break away for even just a few days to get a feel of some freedom and to re-assess your situation. He has to consider that you are much younger. I bet he thought he was such a whizz getting a young wife but with his sitting around he is now putting the whole thing at risk. He also needs to hold conversations with you and discuss what his problems are. If you are with the same Dr maybe you could voice things next time you go or even make an appointment to say you are worried that his inertia is going to put you into depression!

Duncaring
I understand your frustration, it would drive me nuts. However, I think you should make a separate appointment to see his GP. If he is determined to spend the rest of his life like this, then you have a very big decision to make. He could live to 100. Is this how you want to spend the next 30 years?!
Hi
yes indeed, those are the things worrying me! That there is nothing left for me to look forward to. I am low right now but I am strong and I am the coping type, I get on with things. There are plenty who are in far far worse situations than me though, that makes me ashamed. I feel like a whinger when others are caring for loved ones who have had strokes and cancer.
just wanted to welcome you to forum
Hi Sunset - thanks, very much indeed.
Hi Mandie,When I read your post I could have written it myself my husband is also 72 and I am 52 he also likes his bed all day claiming he would like to do more but can't because of age and arthritis I sometimes feel that he could do more if he really wanted to however you should get your husband checked by the doctor as mine started sleeping a lot and not wanting to do anything all the time about six years ago and we put it down to his age taking a nap in the day until he had a heart attack he used to drink and smoke heavily in the past as well so do make sure there is nothing going on there,do they do afternoon appointments at your surgery?Maybe that would suit him better.Otherwise all I can suggest is try and look after yourself and get out and find some time for yourself.
Best wishes Julie
Hi Mandie....

it seems that there are more of us around than we think..that have elderly husbands /partners! Image when we were younger...age didn't really come into it did it!
but like yourself and others.....my husband of 34 yrs is now 78 in poor health and at the moment is being the nastiest man he can possibly be..( I am 57)
So I can understand your position and you have my greatest sympathy....I think we could all write a book on this subject of "older partners/husbands etc)

I wish I had left many many yrs ago...and like you don't like to complain as we sort of knew what we were letting ourselves in for didn't we!!!!
Just wanted to let your not alone....take care Image at the mo mine is in bed in one of his sulkingmoods! but the sun is shining so I shall go and sit and have some VIT D