Hi Lapain, welcome to Healing Well's chronic pain forum. I am very glad that you found us but so sorry that you have to be here.
You have obviously brought up a subject that we have kicked around here many times over and please know that you are not alone with this situation at all. I think someone else said it, men are fixers, and when they can't fix us they can't accept it, let alone understand it, meaning the pain we live with. But, it also works the other way around if its a male involved a lot of times we have seen here at the forum the wife was not supportive at all.
I became ill not from CP in July 2002, and about 4 months into the illness the CP reared its ugly head one more time. I have had CP issues for a good 20 years or better. I had multiple health issues hitting me all at once. My husband had absolutely no clue what I was going thru and he sure did not want to hear about it. At least that is how I felt. So, I did my usual thing, I withdrew and clammed up and never discussed any of my health problems with him again. I ended up seeing a psychologist and she was a gem and helped me so much. I became very depressed and agreed to go see someone. My PCP happened to be my husbands dr too and knew my husband very well, lol. My husband on the other hand had some bad health issues that happened years earlier. The bottom line was he depended on me for everything from the house all the way down that long list of things. He went to work and that was all he did. He was scared of many things, who was going to take care of him and his needs, we were a two income family even though the kids were grown & gone. Our life style revolved around two incomes and we needed both incomes to stay afloat. In reality it was if Susie's ship goes down who is going to keep mine afloat.His biggest fear was who is going to take care of everything here if she is not able to. He did not know until about 2 years ago that I had been to see a psychologist. His comment to me was, well why would you want to do that, lol? So, boy did I ever tell him a thing or two or maybe even three, all I know is I calmly told him what my life had been like including him being such a louse about my health problems. I had to stop working in 2004 and ended up on SSD because of all the health problems.
Even to this day I stay pretty mum about things or how I feel. I can say after all of these years his attitude is much better than it was. He no longer doubts I have these problems and I am sure he wishes I didn't have these problems because i took better care of things then than I do now, lol. Yes, he has been forced to be responsible for a lot of things that he never was before, its been a real eye opener for him, lol. But, I stuck to my guns and just forced the issues a lot. If he starts in on how bad he feels or whatever, I just look at him & say I know what you mean, lol.
Not only does the spouse some times not understand but you will find friends do not either. I had lots of friends I thought, then found out later they were not my real friends, only the real friends stuck by me. But thats ok, I found out who was my real & true friends. But, you know some days I still do not understand all of this and then I say to myself, well if you don't understand it how can you expect someone else to. I am much thicker skinned now than I use to be.
I will tell you and many others here at the forum will agree, depression and CP go hand in hand for some reason. If you can get the depression under control sometimes it does help with the pain. it will not make you pain go away, but it can help. Do not be afraid to get some professional help, that was the best thing I could have done for myself, for me. My first couple of appts I had no clue what to do, what to say and the lady I picked was wonderful. It was great to talk to someone that understood what sickness and pain can do to a person. Personally speaking, I do not hold much for a psychiatrist, but a good psychologist can be worth their weight in gold for a person. Had my insurance not changed and such I would have continued seeing her much longer than I did even though she did get me pretty much over the hump on many things. Believe me, getting help does not mean that you are weak or mental either, it takes a strong person to live with CP.
Just know that you are not alone, need someone to visit with or vent come here, there is usually someone around to hear you out. I really cannot tell you how to make your husband understand, he is going to understand things the way he wants to until he can change his attitude towards you. If he would be willing to come here and read some of the posts perhaps that will open his eyes. Take care and keep us posted on how you are doing.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum