at wits end and there's the deep end

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 10/2/2010 9:47 AM (GMT -6)   
  Hi! First, I want to wish everyone that reads this, (if u deal with chronic pain) luck, love, & support. I have no idea why i'm on this site. If u knew me at all, u would not believe that i would be on a web site talking about my problems. I have always "coped" on my own; but now I think i'm at my wits end! I am just about to SNAP physically & mentally! And have no idea what 2 do.
     I had a "ground breaking surgery", that did nerve damage & left scar tissue(thats grisseling). That was L/4 -L/5. The discs above and below that are bulged & I have degenerative disc disease. So where the damage & pressure is, it effects EVERYTHING below the waist. My right leg does what it wants. Cant feel most of my foot, and sometimes everything goes. So yes, I fall ALOT! And quite often it feels like someone is jabbing a knife in my butt cheek. And it also effects going 2 the bathroom. I'm 39 yrs. old & get 2 wear a brief(diaper) if i want 2 go somewhere. I also have arthritis in my back, neck, & hands. (At least I dont have 2 feel the pain in 4 of my fingers though; because after 1 of my trips down the stairs, I lost the feeling in the fingers in my right hand.) Who knows whats wrong there; & dont really care at this point. I'm also lucky enough 2 have high blood pressure, lung problems(have spent time in hospital on oxygen), & liver problems(this is what my doc. frets about). There is more but I'm sure you get what I'm going through. where as most of you seem to be.
      My life has changed so much. I used to run heavy equipment. Front end loader mostly. I was what most people called a work-a-holic(80-100 hrs./week). But in actuality I was just working so that my wife didnt have to, the bills could be paid, and my wife & kids could go do whatever they wanted. Thats just the way I was brought up. You do whatever it takes to take care of your family. So to make the rest of this as quick as possible. I worked with my problems as long as I could. Until my dad sat me down and said,"enough is enough", you have nothing to prove. First it was hard enough not being able to work. As things got worse, health wise, the depression started setting in. I was feeling so useless. Then you add in that I cant do anything "fun" with my family anymore. Just getting out of bed(when I can sleep) and getting through the day is hard enough. Then add the depression, and for a family man as myself, having them put me to bed before they go do something(most of the time) just kills me. So already feeling like not even half the man I was, things start going bad in my marrige. Even when I try to explain whats going on, she didn't even want to listen. It was no good trying anyway; because you have to be going through it to understand it. So things get bad enough financially that she had to get a job. Thats when the annimosity started. Now, yesterday, she finally told me that as far as she's concearned, its over. I knew it was. She litterally has been treating me like crap for a long time now. 20 years, down the toilet! Wonderful! Now I get to start over and i can baely take care of myself. Half the time I cant get to the bathroom by myself, which is right next to my room. So I dont need to tell you how hard it is for me to do a full daily routine by myself.
     Please, I'm not looking for sympathy or pitty. Again, if you knew me, you'd be suprised that I was even on here. I just couldnt believe when I found this website, (very first one i looked at)if that wasnt a sign. Not only was everyone truely caring and compasionate, I could tell, by reading several posts, that most on here are truely living with chronic pain & the misery of life that goes along with it. I know this is long; but I have several years of pain, anguish, & depression I HAD to get out. In actuallity(sadly) this could of been much longer. Hopefully I can suck up my pride and get myself to come on and chat with you wonderful folks.
                         I send my very best wishes to everyone, Brad 

Elite Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/2/2010 9:57 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome, Brad.
These are wonderful people here. I'm sorry you're having so much trouble and having to deal with such issues.
Can you get some help? Hire an attendent to help you out? Surely someone can help you with the daily routines at least cleaning and cooking?

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16788
   Posted 10/2/2010 10:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello Brad and welcome to Healing Well's chronic pain forum. I am very glad that you stumbled upon this forum first and decided to take the big step and post. That for me was the hardest thing to do was sit and try to write about myself when no one knew me. But once I made that initial post I was home free, lol. Everybody made me feel like they had known me all my life so I hope you will get the same feeling.

I read your story and in many ways it was like reading my story and many others on here. A lot of us have been dealing with CP a long time and have covered some of the same road you have so we do understand what you are talking about. I too am no longer able to work and that was back in 2004. I am on SSD and believe me, I would laughed in your face if you would have told me where I would be by the time I was 50. I am now 57. Ha, ha, is what I would have said, some joke. I worked for one atty 18 years and loved doing that kind of work. I too worked many years with CP and thought you were suppose to just suck it up and keep going. CP is not what put me on SSD it was crohns disease and and a couple of surgeries that knocked my legs out from under me, then of course CP was always there as a back up.

I am assuming your drs are telling you they have done all they can to correct your problems and there is no other surgery that could possibly help you in any way. What does the drs think has caused the liver situation? I do hope it is not permanent. Are you under the care of a pain mgt dr by chance? I learned a long time ago this is the best choice of treatment for me to get help with the pain. I have an intrathecal pain pump implanted.

I do hope that perhaps you and your wife will entertain the thought perhaps of getting marriage counseling rather than just throwing in the towel. I think you owe it to each other to make an effort to try it, I cannot say it will help or not but I hope this is something that will be considered. I just hate seeing a divorce come down the pike. I do know how hard it can be for a spouse to live with someone that suffers as we do. One thing I learned early on, many times family and friends do not always understand what it is like living with CP they just for whatever reason cannot get a handle on it and understand. But, on the other side of the token, many times I have not understood it, so how can I expect them to. If I want to talk about how I am feeling, I come here to this forum and talk about it. I will not discuss it with my family, and I have so few friends left as they stop calling when you are not able to get up and run with them.

I have made a new life living with all the different medical problems I am now dealing with. We have to come to terms with it all and make a different life. We owe it to ourselves and our families. I don't believe in just giving in and letting it win, I will fight back some how. I think you will fight back too Brad, you just had a curve ball thrown at you yesterday. I am just so glad you found us here and was brave enough to get some of it out. Thats the beauty of this forum is we can talk about things that are eating us alive, getting on our nerves or making us upset and there is always someone here to listen. Just knowing you are not alone can go a very long ways I think.

I do hope you will keep posting and letting us know how you are doing. With it being a weekend sometimes things get a little slow but others will be popping in and out all day long. Take care and again, welcome aboard.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 856
   Posted 10/2/2010 10:43 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to HW. I'm so sorry that you are dealing with so much. This is such a wonderful place though because everyone is very supportive and it's great to be able to connect with people who really understand how hard it is to live with chronic pain. Thank you for posting.



Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 256
   Posted 10/2/2010 12:30 PM (GMT -6)   
Sounds all too familiar. You're far from alone in this. None of us really want to be here talking about it....we want to do whatever it takes to fix it and get our lives back! Unfortunately, in many cases, medical "science" as applied by doctors just doesn't have the tools to help us adequately. Nor do most docs do a very good job of utilizing the tools that we do have, and we're often left to figure it all out for ourselves.

Don't be afraid to make the most of the resources you have here in this forum and others like it. Your situation with your wife is sadly familiar (though I'm fortunate to have one who is relatively understanding, even for her it's an incredibly difficult situation) and almost all of us deal with something similar in one form or another.
Conditions: Reactive Arthritis (AKA Reiter Syndrome), Crohn's Disease, Chronic Pelvic Inflammatory Syndrome, Sacroiliitis, Costochondritis, As Yet Unknown MS-Like Relapsing/Remitting Neuropathy, and a partridge in a pear tree.

Medications: Currently not that many are taken daily, but there are many at my disposal for part-time use. Low dose pain medication, after years at high doses. Working on innovative ways of taking lesser-known pharmaceuticals and non-prescription supplements to maximum benefit.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 594
   Posted 10/2/2010 2:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear Brad,

You have definitely come to the right place, although I am very sorry you had to seek us out! What you will not find here is judgment, but you will find understanding and you will not find pity, but you will find caring and true concern! This is an amazing group and I am honored to be part of it! My problems began in my lower back also, with a lot of nerve problems like yours, however not as bad yet....but I truly understand what you are going through! I am sorry your wife did not and that happens a lot when someone develops CP! You need to be involved with people who do understand, because her animosity only makes it worse for you! Hang in there and take care of you! Stick around, you will like it here!

Nice to meet you,
Spinal Stenosis L3/L4, L4/L5 & L5/S1 with Nerve Impingement, Fibromyalgia, TMJ, GERD, Severe Depression, VERY Large Cyst Right Ovary causing mild twisting, Small Cysts Left Ovary & 3 Large Cysts Uterus and Possible RA

Medications - MS-Contin, Cymbalta, Famotidine and currently Prednisone

White Beard
Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3702
   Posted 10/2/2010 2:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Brad

Welcome to the Chronic Pain forum! I can empathize with you in many ways, You have had a rough road, Chronic Pain and medical problems can play havoc with our lives! Loss of work, and the ability to do some of the simplest things of daily life! The effect it has on relationships of friends and spouse and even the possible distruction of the marriage its self! Allot of these things I have also experienced first hand! So first thing I want to tell tell you as several of the members here have already said, You are not alone when you come to this forum! We can and do listen, and share in your frustrations and grief! This of course can do nothing to fix you, but as the saying goes "misery loves company" well at least here you have allot of company! We can and do understand what you are going through! I do have some questions, have they done everything they can do medically and surgically to help you? Or is that still a work in progress? Are you under the constant care of a pain management doctor? And have you ever been to counseling? You know I have been on disability since 2002 and was unable to work for several years befor that because of my back. I was fortunate that I still had my military retirement! But it is still difficult having to give up being the main bread winner, of the house hold. I know exactly what you mean when you said ("Thats just the way I was brought up. You do whatever it takes to take care of your family") After I retired from the Air Force I went back to school and became a Registered Nurse, I had only been working as an RN 5 years before I became disabled! It rips you completely apart! And the pain of it all goes right down to the core of your being! For me I did not seek counseling till my marriage started really failing, ( that was a mistake on my part) anyway, when the marriage started goig south I sought marriage counseling, unfortunately my spouse would not go. So for close to a year I went by my self, every week! It really helped me, but unfortunately the marriage could not be saved, ( it takes two to make a marriage and it takes two save it! and only one can not do it!) So I strongly encourage you to seek marriage counseling BOTH of you! but if nothing else go by yourself if need be! I was much stronger and capable of dealing with not just the divorce, but also the loss of my job and adjusting to my new life, of being on disability and also being alone and divorced. I will tell you something though, it was just not counseling that got me through all of that! It was also the fine compassionate and caring folks right here on this forum, that helped me through every step of this terrible painful process. My divorce was long and drawn out, and extremely painful, and all during that time I was also having major spinal problems, and a year ago in the middle of the divorce I had to have a cervical spinal fusion. Between professional counselling and the friendship and caring support and advice from my family right here on this chronic pain forum, I made it through all of it!

You to will make it through these seemingly impossible times, and hopefully your marriage will even be stronger having gone through it all! But it does mean allot of work for both of you, so I can not stress this enough, seek counseling, don't give up your marriage with out at least trying! Even if she won't ! But ask her, 20 years is a long time! I know, my divorce was finalized 15 days after our 35the wedding anniversary! and that was just this past February!! I can at least hold my head high and say I tried and did everything possible to save it! So Please at least try to avoid getting a divorce! Don't let that happen to you with out at least trying to save and salvage your marriage! Talk to you wife about counseling, hopefully it is not to late for you guys!

I do wish you well! And I am glad you found us here!

White Beard
Moderator Chronic Pain
After spending nearly 22 1/2 years in the USAF, I retired in Sept, 1991. I then went back to school and became a licensed RN in 1994, and I worked on Oncology and then a Med Surg Unit, I became disabled in late 1999 and was approved SSD in early 2002!-- DDD, With herniated Disk at T-12 and L4-5. C5-C6 ACDF in Sep 2009, C6-C7 ACDF in Mar 1985, Osteoarthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia, Complex Sleep Apnea, and host of other things to spice up my life!(NOT!) Medications:Oxycontin, Percocet, Baclofen, Sulfasalazine, Metoprolol, Folic Acid, Supplemental O2 at 3lpm with VPAP Adapt SV I am White Beard with a White Beard!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 663
   Posted 10/3/2010 10:29 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Brad, and welcome to Healing Well. I am sorry that you are dealing with so much pain right now. I hope you continue to post here, you will get alot of support and it helps to talk to poeple that know what you are going through. Once again welcome and take care.
Gentle Hugs,

Fibromyalgia, Chronic daily headaches, Migraines, Possible Graves Disease, GERD, High blood pressure, Depression and Anxiety

Oxycontin, Lopressor, Lexapro, Omeprazole, Promethazine as needed for nausea, Ventolin inhaler and Vitamin D3

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 9664
   Posted 10/3/2010 11:22 AM (GMT -6)   
nice to meet you, sure wish it was under better circumstance than Chronic Pain...
Some of what you said is starting to happen in my life now...
There are a lot of good folks here who will come by with great advise like some of the above.
I wish I could tell ya there was a light at the end of this tunnel, but life is not like that..
Healing Hugz and wishes for a low pain day..
* Asthma, Allergies, Osteoarthritis, Spinal Stenosis, Degenative Disc (Lower Lumbar S1-L3 and Cervical C5,C6, C8 and T1), Fibromyalgia, Gerd,
Enlarged Pituitary Gland, Sjogren's, Ocular Migraines, mild carpel tunnel, ect.... "Would be nice if we could use the edit button in real life"...


Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 10/3/2010 12:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Brad,

Welcome to the site, there are really wonderful people who are caring and compassionate, and great listeners and advice givers. When I read your story, it was like reading parts of mine, I too suffer from bladder problems and my legs giving out and just deciding to stop working. I know how horrifying that is, and couple that with a bladder that does what it wants, it can be very debilitating.

What type of treatment are receiving for your back conditions now? Have you seen a pain management doctor and a urologist? The urologist has several methods of treatment they can try to help control incontinence. Have you and your wife tried counseling? I know not being the one with chronic pain, it can be hard to understand, but counseling with a therapist who deals with chronic pain could really help.

I'm sorry you are having such a hard time right now, but I'm so glad you found us, this is a great site.
-We must be the change we wish to see in the world-
(Mahatma Gandhi)

*Scoliosis, Degenerative Disc Disease, Spinal Stenosis, Osteoarthritis, Loss of Lordosis, Endometriosis, Kerataconus, Flast back syndrome, TMJ, loss of bladder func. indwelling cath. for 6 months.*
*20 surgeries- 8 spinal including 6 fusions and 2 for staph infections, 9 pelvic including full hysterectomy, 1 knee, 2 cesareans*
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