How do I support my undiagnosed boyfriend?

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klsygal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 115
   Posted 12/9/2009 8:28 AM (GMT -7)   
smhair Hello All:  I am new to the world of Anxiety disorders, so bear with me.  My boyfriend (age 40)is yet to be diagnosed but after careful study and discussions with professionals, I am 99% certain that he is suffering from a Social Anxiety Disorder which is interferring with his life and subsequently mine.  He is unable to go to a concert or party.  He appears to be comfortable only in small groups or up to 4.
 
I respect and care very deeply for this man and I am looking for practical ways to talk to him about this subject and how best to support him.  I know I have his trust because he has health issues where he has trusted me with personal information.  I want nothing more than to build upon this trust. 
 
Before you were diagnosed; how could your loved ones talk and encourage you when it took all you could do just to do your day?  Did someone who loves you risk your anger to do so?  If so, did you forgive them?  Were you able to include them in your recovery?
 
Please help!
klsygal smilewinkgrin
 
Concerned friend of a Crohnie.  Trying to support him in his life and treatment.
 
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt."
Shakespeare - Measure for Measure
 
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, nor bends with the remover to remove; oh no, it is an ever fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is never shaken...
Shakepeare - Sonnet CXVI


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 12/9/2009 9:02 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello and I am sorry to hear about your boyfriend. My first experience with anxiety as a disorder was a major panic attack and my husband and friends responded immediately so I received medical care and was connected to a therapist very early in my dx. I did not need anyone to intervene as I recognized right away I was in trouble and in fact I asked for help.

I have had this disorder for 26 years and I now take responsibility for seeking out help of my family, friends, and my physicians.

Now I find after so many years the support is not always as forthcoming as I would like it to be and often I flounder or tread water on my own. That is when I come here, talk to good friends or see my therapist for a dose of reality check in keeping control of my own anxiety.

I hope this helps you in some small way.

Welcome to the A & P Forum.

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 12/9/2009 9:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi there...Kitt has given great advice as always.....i too hv suffered with this for many more yrs than i would care too count ....I watched my mom suffer with anxiety and she would self medicate with alcohol which made it worse imho.....do you think he would come here and talk to us.i truly believe that if you n he want a life together you must know all that is going on with him.....anxiety social anxiety is a hard pill to swallow..but there are ways to work on it ...seeing a therapist..doing cbt....also there are some good med choices......its great to see the concern n love for him and that you hv reached out for help....now maybe you can share this site with him...he is definitely not alone nor are you...take care....lyn
                          
                                Co Mod for Crohns, Anxiety/Panic, Alzheimers
   Crohns..Pyoderma gangrenosum,..Anxiety / panic..Fibromyalgia,,Neuropathy...Deaf...Seizures
 
                        I DONT COMPLAIN...OTHERS ARE WORSE OFF THAN I AM                                   
                                                     .....LYN.......
                                Donate to..www..healingwell.com.
                                                    
                                                 
 
                              
 


klsygal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 115
   Posted 12/9/2009 9:41 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi: I recognize you from the Crohn's forum!  Yeah!  I have posted on that site regarding his Crohn's and Celiac disease.  This is where I have built the trust with him, as he has shared his struggle for the last 10 years with me.  At this point he is entirely too private to consider this site.

You are right, this will be a tough pill to swallow and I am not sure that he doesn't already know what is wrong and just accepts it.  How sad this disease is. 

Any suggestions on how I can gently ease into the subject?  With his other diseases, I have always presented the information for his consideration, letting him know that I am here for him.  That seems to work for the CD and Celiac, maybe it will work for this. I pray it is so.  I am seeing him on Tuesday next.  I suppose it is clear that I really love this man.  He is a good man and in this world that is more and more rare.  I would certainly never give him up over a Disease or disorder.  Life is too precious.

Thanks for your advice.

klsygal


 
Concerned friend of a Crohnie.  Trying to support him in his life and treatment.
 
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt."
Shakespeare - Measure for Measure
 
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, nor bends with the remover to remove; oh no, it is an ever fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is never shaken...
Shakepeare - Sonnet CXVI


Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 12/9/2009 10:25 AM (GMT -7)   
Well in all honesty if you love him ..i can see u do ....and plan on being with him in marriage perhaps children,,you will face many things that do have to have complete honesty and trust involved ya know...his health is a concern of yours and i believe that maybe you should approach the subject in a way that you know he will take as you know him i dont...there are so many ppl with this disorder that are now openly talking about it its not the stigmata it use to be imho...you hv 2 quotes from Shakespeare that funnily enough make me think of your situation......i believe you can do this and it will work out for you 2 let him know you want to understand and support him.....i wish you all the best ..in the end this has to be your decision hun .....what is your heart telling you.......tc...luvs lyn

:-) pardon me if i seem naive but why are docs talking to you about him and his health issues...do you hv the same doc,,,,i know i had to gv permission once i was coming back around after hospital stay for daughter cait to talk about me with our pdoc or family doc....and now because i am totally deaf cait is in all appointments with me BUT i still want to know what doc is saying lol.........again i had to give written permission for cait to be kept abreast of what was going on..still going on.....luvs lyn


                          
                                Co Mod for Crohns, Anxiety/Panic, Alzheimers
   Crohns..Pyoderma gangrenosum,..Anxiety / panic..Fibromyalgia,,Neuropathy...Deaf...Seizures
 
                        I DONT COMPLAIN...OTHERS ARE WORSE OFF THAN I AM                                   
                                                     .....LYN.......
                                Donate to..www..healingwell.com.
                                                    
                                                 
 
                              
 

Post Edited (Howlyncat) : 12/9/2009 11:01:10 AM (GMT-7)


klsygal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 115
   Posted 12/9/2009 11:02 AM (GMT -7)   

Thanks so much for the encouragement.  I guess I am scared; scared that he will end us and not see how much I want to understand.  This is where I will have to trust him to know me and if I am wrong, I will admit it.

Wish me luck! I would rather speak up and risk his wrath than see him suffer with something that is treatable.  I was thinking about Dr. John Nash ( A Beautiful Mind Movie) who overcame Schizophrenia (sp) using his own intellect and great support.  My man has that kind of brain - to overcome anything.  I've just watched this pattern emerge over the last 5 years.  So sad.

I'll check back tomorrow.

God Bless you.

klsygal

 


 
Concerned friend of a Crohnie.  Trying to support him in his life and treatment.
 
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt."
Shakespeare - Measure for Measure
 
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, nor bends with the remover to remove; oh no, it is an ever fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is never shaken...
Shakepeare - Sonnet CXVI


Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 12/9/2009 11:49 AM (GMT -7)   
i am saying a special lil prayer for you n him.....i so hope it goes well...ya know he might get angry at first but i think that is a normal reaction..he already has a chronic illness and has to live with that..many with chronic illnesses due hv a/p along with it.....since being so ill and becoming totally deaf i hv basically not left the house ...i use to be so outgoing ya know even with ap now i feel like i am more of a burden n i frustrate ppl because i cannot hear.....i have to live like this and be strong no matter what.....i found i was giving up for a bit and then i came back spitting mad lol......you can do this..i will check on ya later or in am....luvs lyn
                          
                                Co Mod for Crohns, Anxiety/Panic, Alzheimers
   Crohns..Pyoderma gangrenosum,..Anxiety / panic..Fibromyalgia,,Neuropathy...Deaf...Seizures
 
                        I DONT COMPLAIN...OTHERS ARE WORSE OFF THAN I AM                                   
                                                     .....LYN.......
                                Donate to..www..healingwell.com.
                                                    
                                                 
 
                              
 


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 12/9/2009 12:25 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Klysgal,

I am Gail *Nanners* from the Crohns board. I understand so much his anxiety about going to places with large crowds. I personally believe it is related to the Crohns. With Crohns you are constantly worrying about where the bathroom is, will there big a long line, what if I can't hold it, what if it has foods I can't eat, etc. I wanted to tell you all this so you could understand where he is coming from.

I am married to the most wonderful man in the world, he understands that fact about me. Before I go anywhere I have to know everything, or my anxiety goes thru the roof, and I get very panicked. My suggestion is having him talk to his family doctor about his anxiety. Maybe a med such a Xanax will help to calm his fears a little when he is going to a place like described above that might make his anxiety ramp up. I use .25 mg of Xanax, the lowest dose available, when I might be having a situation that I fear will cause me to be anxious. I know its helped me get thru a few tough times.

So maybe some of the more crowded type activities may be out forever. But if he is able to plan a little, maybe the Xanax would help out in those situations.

I hope I have helped some.

Hugs
Gail*Nanners*
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 12/9/2009 12:27 PM (GMT -7)   
I think its funny the responses you have gotten are from 3 women, 2 with Crohns, and Stkitt is actually the one who suffers with anxiety and her husband has Crohns. So all three of us understand what you are dealing with one way or the other:)
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 12/9/2009 1:56 PM (GMT -7)   
Nanners is so right, I am married to a Crohnie and I have learned what places and things he chooses not to go to as they will cause him to become anxious ( even thow he sounds more angry then anxious when asked to attend an event he can not control) . I can tell his anger is his anxiety coming out.


He needs to know he can eat on his schedule whenever possible, has private time for his routine morning habits, has easy access to the bathroom and large crowds or standing in line make him anxious. It is much harder in a large crowd to get to a restroom.



Also high anxiety will raise his stess level and may lead to a flair that lasts for a few days for him to get back under control.



I always support him but sometimes I just have to let him work it out and make his choices so I don't get caught up in the blame game. The "it was your idea to go and now I have a gut ache". I have learned to let that fly over my head.



He has also had a Radical Prostatectomy so plumbing is a big issue for him.



So my best advice, support by just being there and understanding where he is coming from. Do I get frustrated ............yes at times but someone said it, if you love him you will work it out.



Take care and glad you joined us.



Kitt

Howlyncat
Elite Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 24909
   Posted 12/9/2009 6:44 PM (GMT -7)   
lol..i am glad the gals touched on the cd issues we face ..i am one that has to get to potty n fast like....mine is always the worst in am so i can USUALLY plan my afternoons out unless are down with a flare....i am a real quick shopper,,,in n out and know where btrms are...although not fond of using public ones lol....but when ya gotta go.....ya gotta go ....i wont say i dont get anxious when going out cuz i do but there are times i hv to get stuff done myself ya know,,,i will take my sublingusl stivsn just before going out,,,,,i am already thinking about the what ifs at ppls houses during Christmas....the cd anxiety and now being deaf has really got me stressed out i feel so out of the picture with everyone,,,i really am thinking of just staying home to avoid all of it but i know family n friends would be upset,,,,i will make an honest effort,,i will def avoid foods i know will cause probs a coupl days ahead and then at celebrations....one thing for sure is stress makes me worse all the time....and this time of yr can be very stressful for so many ppl....nanners n kitt gave ya great advice as always...stay with us and keep us posted on how it all goes plz.....with you in spirit we are....lyn
                          
                                Co Mod for Crohns, Anxiety/Panic, Alzheimers
   Crohns..Pyoderma gangrenosum,..Anxiety / panic..Fibromyalgia,,Neuropathy...Deaf...Seizures
 
                        I DONT COMPLAIN...OTHERS ARE WORSE OFF THAN I AM                                   
                                                     .....LYN.......
                                Donate to..www..healingwell.com.
                                                    
                                                 
 
                              
 


klsygal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 115
   Posted Today 8:25 AM (GMT -7)   
smilewinkgrin    Thanks to everyone who responded.  I think you have answered my questions.  All I need to do is be the girl he loves already and everything will be ok.  To clarify, I have not spoken to any of his doctors regarding my suspicions; I have only talked to Professionals who are in my sphere. I think I will know the right time to talk to him about this.
 
In the meantime, I am just going to love my life and being with him.
I will keep you posted.  Thanks again for sharing your expertise.  You can bill me...
 
Merry Christmas - Happy Holidays - Happy Hanukkah to all.
God Bless You!
klsygal scool
 
Concerned friend of a Crohnie.  Trying to support him in his life and treatment.
 
"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt."
Shakespeare - Measure for Measure
 
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, nor bends with the remover to remove; oh no, it is an ever fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is never shaken...
Shakepeare - Sonnet CXVI


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted Today 9:50 AM (GMT -7)   
Klysgal,

What address do we use for the bill:) j/k I am glad we were able to help you understand him a little more. I am so grateful my hubby understands all the oddities in me that Crohns has caused, and I am sure your guy will appreciate your understanding too.

Good luck
Gail*Nanners*
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*
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