Housework and Pain, what do you do?

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Dragoness Warrior
Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 96
   Posted 7/7/2008 1:28 PM (GMT -6)   
I have a problem...  See, my boyfriend and I suffer together with back pain, and between the both of us, we figured that we can do it together and get things done.  But as time went on, I got worse and worse, so now he's VERY frustrated, because he is in pain, I'm in pain, he helps take care of me, and the housework is suffering BADLY!!  We don't have the income to hire anyone to help around the house, so I don't know what to do!  I don't want to have him resent me because I can't.  Nor do I want him to have to do everything!  We are pretty independant people, so asking for help is very hard, not to mention, no one is there to help!!  LOL!  I was just wondering how everyone gets things done, the normal house work, like washing dishes, which both of us have trouble standing over the sink, and the laundry, OMG, it's everywhere, and of course the stuff is in the basement, so it's hard to get up and down!!  I'm SO embarrassed about the way things are!  Please, advice is appreciated!!  Thanks to all!!
Good luck and wish you all relief!!

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 7/7/2008 2:47 PM (GMT -6)   
some churches have volunteers that could help.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 2113
   Posted 7/7/2008 5:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I would use paper plate and cups to limit the number of dishes (If your environmentally conscious get the kind made of corn that biodegrade). Do ask about local volunteers. Other than that all the things you already know take one chore at a time, go slowly rest when you need to and the world won't end if the floor does not get vacuumed today.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 155
   Posted 7/7/2008 6:42 PM (GMT -6)   
well my friends
you speak to a CONCERN that is close to my heart;
my pile of undone things... the etc.. & etc...
Sometimes I take one room,.. and tidy it... knowing at least I did one room
some times... its task by task, with a rest break in between
I remember being given a hard time by a church group, when I was sick & unable, and I had my motehr dying of cancer in the hospital, so I opted to go visit her & let my piles of laundry sit.. and basically ignored... keeping a clean house as a single parent with 5 little kids...

BOY did I hear a ungodly hollering form a group of " better than thou Women!"

I have never been the same since; they even threatened to have my children removed

GOOD THING I had close friends... with kids, who weren't perfectionist house keepers either..
who reassured me they've seen my house cleaner than their most of the time...
and if people couldn't step in to help on a regular basis they had no right to JUDGE me in the midst of health crisis & my mother dying from cancer

so I'm not sure about calling a CHURCH group unless you know them well.... and feel it is the right thing to do

I ended up moving away from that self righteous community.... and I ahve never asked for or expected help again.

I still have serious health issues... and there are times I cant keep up & other times Im able to be TIDY...

Like you I wish I could afford a cleaning person///
like you I'm living on low income
and what doesn't get done I try not to sweat it

there are days I blow my cool
cause my children how are now older & husband.. I expect more from them

but they are messy's & I'm actually a neat freak.. unable to be a neat freak *LOL*//
so i'm a fustrated Moma

Today for example

I'm going to do what I call the 15 minute tidy...
pick up, vaccume... put away... wipe counters...
load dishwasher..
then make me tea
and say ok its tidy
no one look under my bed please!!!!!!!!!!!
or in the closet...
or ya

my kids rooms will swallow you whole


they are old enough and have had their rooms immaculate.. so I know they can
and if they dont

its not where I sleep


do what you honestly can
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their Strength, they shall mount up on wings as eagles, they shall run & not grow weary, they shall walk & not faint..."  Ish   40 v. 31 
Sjrogrens Syndrome, Asthema, Chronic Fatigue, Chronic Pain, Head aches, Migraines, Gastro Intestinal Problems , Esophegial Spasms;   Fibro Myalgia , Kidney Stones,  & CP (SI joint,   low mechanical back pain..L4 & L5 Vertebrae Misaligned,  Spinal Stenosis and Degenerative Disc Disease, Bulging Disc, anterolisthesis L4 L5L4 -- S1 pain  caused by osteoarthristis ,bone spurs, causing pinching or pressure on spinal chord)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 7/7/2008 7:22 PM (GMT -6)   
For me, being alone, lots and lots and lots of stuff never gets done! So it's an embarassment when the few people who do come over visit. I can do washes, load the dishwasher, clean the sink and toilet, if I do it in spurts and watch my posture, etc. But the big stuff? Yikes. Vacuuming is like the worst thing I can do - I hurt for days or longer. You don't want to know what my floors look like. Guess I don't look down anymore except to keep from tripping! LOL

And then there's the stacks and stacks of papers - medical records, insurance stuff, all kinds of things relating to medical and financial issues. I just can't be too worried about it anymore.

Adjust your expectations. That's what we get good at, right?


New Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 7/7/2008 10:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I read your post, "Dragoness", and immediately related to your situation. I am 29 years old and for the past 8 months have been almost bedridden! I have a great husband who is very understanding and a hard worker around the house, but I worry about his pain because he has two bad knees and feet. I am also a "neat freak" and get really depressed, whenever I look around my messy house! I do take 50 mg of Zoloft daily for the depression, due to chronic pain.

I have found that doing the dishes as you go along really helps. I use a sponge and Dawn foam because you don't have to have a load of dishes and can do the dishes without a lot of water. I also use disposable cups and plates to cut down on the amount of dishes.

I bought a vacuum cleaner on clearance that is very light weight but still has the same suction as the bigger vacuums. Vacuuming does seem to be one of the most painful chores around the house. I only vacuum once a week now, instead of every other day.

I also only polish the furniture once a month now and use a feather duster the rest of the time. I also have a air purifier to cut down on harmful dust.

As far as laundry goes, I do a load a day and put them away immediately. I also use the wrinkle release option on my dryer, in order to do away with ironing.

I have learned to do one chore and one load of laundry a day. I also have learned to ask my darling husband for help. I have two young children, who are home for the summer. The housework gets very frustrating, but please learn to deal with it the way that suits you best and not worry about what everyone else has to say.

God bless everyone,
Degenerative Disc Disease (causing severe spinal abnormalities); Severe Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Heart Condition, Possible Auto-Immune Disease
MRI (May 2007); Physical Therapy (May-June 2007 discontinued due to worsening condition); LESI (January 2008); "Conservative" Therapy
Zoloft 50 mg daily
Neurontin 600 mg daily
Hydrocodone 5/500 3 times daily
(2) Heart Medications
Mobic (1) daily; Diclofenac (3) times daily; Several "Natural" Supplements

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 1713
   Posted 7/7/2008 10:20 PM (GMT -6)   

Here are a few suggestions:  Get a high stool for the kitchen.  That way you don't have to stand while you are washing dishes and doing the cooking.  Use disposable dishes whenever you can and throw out instead of wash!  Get a lightweight vaccuum and when all else fails, lower your expectations.

Good luck!


Moderator Chronic Pain
Believe in yourself.  Be kind to fellow humans and animals.  Take time to smell the flowers and the coffee.
And by all means, when you are down, ask me for help.  I will be there.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 617
   Posted 7/8/2008 10:03 AM (GMT -6)   

Oh my lord!!!  Can I relate to this problem!!!  I have a very difficult time with trying to do housework.  Previously, I lived in a three story townhouse, and just going up and down the stairs was awful for my bad knees.  I moved into a much smaller apartment last fall, so everything would be on the same floor, and I'd have much less space that needs cleaning.  Unfortunately, I basically got moved in just enough to live, but still have tons of boxes that haven't been unpacked yet!!! 

I have a horrible time trying to do housework, but since nobody ever comes to my apartment except my dad, everything just piles up.  My mom always says that she needs to come over once a week and help me clean up, but she's been saying that for six years!!!  She did come over last Saturday to help do some dishes, but the first half hour she was here, all she did was fuss at me about my living conditions, which I totally didn't need.  I feel bad enough about the place being a mess, but the pain that comes with trying to clean up is almost unbearable.  It also doesn't help that I have three cats that shed all over the place, and love to knock thing over all the time.  Heck, my folks could afford to have someone come every couple of weeks and keep the place in good shape.  I'm just tired of all the lip service and all the pain that keeps me in this mess.

Leigh Ann sad

Basic info:
  • On Disability for: Chronic Migraines, serious Back and Knee problems (will need surgery eventually), moderate Depression, Anxiety/Panic disorder, TMJ 
  • Divorced, 43, no children
  • Surgeries: Gastric Bypass, Gallbladder Removed (followed by a week in the hospital for a Blood Clot), Impacted Kidney Stone Removed, Broken Ankle, Major Dental work(four molars pulled, multiple cavities, root canals) 
  • Current Meds: Prozac, Klonopin, Atenelol, Stadol Nasal Spray, Lortab, Trazadone, Buspar, Nexium, Tramadol, Phenergan, PROHIBITED FROM ALL NSAIDS
  • Current Problem: Internal Bleeding, possible ulcer in location of Gastric Bypass
"The weather is here, I wish you were beautiful."
                                             - Jimmy Buffett

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9157
   Posted 7/8/2008 1:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Wow, is this a good topic! The messy house bothers me more than anyone else. But it makes me crazy. I like things put away but there always seems to be clutter. I've been slowly working on getting rid of things. Starting small by throwing out junk, paper, things I'm saving but will never use. The next one, I told hubby, is a bunch of collectibles that are in boxes. Haven't seen them in years. If the kids want them, fine...but if not they are going. Less to worry about.

We have a remodel project that is just sitting and it making me insane! Things I can't do and I'm wondering why we ever started. Oh well. It will eventually get done.

If you are totally under siege please do ask for help. Instead of calling a church give the Red Cross a call. They help with any kind of personal problems you might have. They even get people hooked up with health care insurance.

Co-Mod Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis, Insulin dependent diabetic, collapsed disk, dermatitis herpetiformus, osteo arthritis in spine and other locations.

The only difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has it's limits. Albert Einstein: (1879-1955)

Dragoness Warrior
Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 96
   Posted 7/8/2008 1:32 PM (GMT -6)   
You guys are GREAT!!!  tongue    Thank you for all the great advice!!  We do use plastic plates, cups, plastic ware, etc., I hate to do that to the environment, but I don't have money to buy the biodegradable!  That's what I don't understand too, they have things that are better for the environment, and cheaper to make, but it's that much more expensive, you know?!  LOL!  Anyway, that does help a lot though!
I have always been a neat freak, but I was never taught how to clean very well because I grew up with such severe asthma too, so I wasn't allowed to used those cleaning products!  I still have severe asthma, but I do what I have to when it comes to that, it's just getting over the pain to get it done!!  It's VERY comforting to know that I'm not the only one out there that has a mess that they just CAN'T get to sometimes!!
I never imagined how much this topic hit home for some of us!  Thank you!!  I feel much better now about my laundry full and just piles of "stuff"!!  I'm so glad that I found you all!
Thank you all, and I wish you all some relief, or at least a good day!!  I know for some of us, relief is hard reaching, but stay positive!  Positivity does a body good!  :-)  
Thank you all!!
And please, if anyone else has more to add, please, I'm open for all advice!!  Thanks!
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