Robbed By Illness

My husband has so many ills, all brought on by diabetes that he had for years; serious heart problems, strokes (thankfully not too physically debilitating, but caused a lot of deficits), hearing problems that can't be helped by hearing aids because of the way his brain interprets the sound, balance problems, diabetic neuropathy and weakness with nerve pain, and now wound healing issues.  He's only 55.  He is such a good guy.  I am 60, and used to be a very "young" person who by myself and with him truly enjoyed life.  I am a prisoner now.  Fortunately my job is done at home, so I can keep a watch on him.  If I didn't work from home I have no idea how I would be able to be away from him all day.  I must work not only for the paycheck but because he has so many  medical bills and prescriptions every month that we can't afford the Medicare parts B and beyond, and so I insure him mainly for the drug coverage.  

One of the things that I hate the most is that no one understands what a hell it is having a chronically ill partner.  Our friends are always inviting us to their homes and to get togethers, but his heart is so bad he becomes exhausted and has to rest every few hours, and he can no longer walk up and down steps easily, if at all sometimes.  None of them "get it" and sometimes I think they don't want to.   I feel isolated.  I just wish besides our children who are grown and have their own lives, that people who knew us had any understanding of what a hell this is.  No one does.  Every day it is something new and worse, to the point that if I told anyone who really wasn't around to see things happening they would never believe me.  At least I can tell this here and have people understand.

I commiserate with all of you.  Until you live it, no one can understand the prison your life becomes.  A partner's chronic illness is like a thief that robs both of you of your hopes and dreams.   Just when we were empty nesters and were so looking forward to finally being just him and me it all went to hell.  
GretelB GretelB
2 Responses Jan 19, 2012

I have been married for 20 years. My husband has been sick for most of it. He has diabetes too. We have two children, one of which recently had brain surgery. My husband just started dialysis from a kidney disease that he also has, among many other things. It is very true that no one understands or would even believe all you go through. Some times I feel like a burden when I just try to talk to someone about it. It truely is a living hell. I am a nurse, so I feel like I work 24/7. I long for a normal life with my family. I am so tired of sickness.

i have had this experience. my husband was sick for ten years from diabetic complications. it seems that because diabetes can be controlled with new medicine today people with diabetes are living longer lives but they are having more symptoms (neuropathy pain) that the medical system doesnt know much about. my husband died 3 years ago and it was a blessing for both of us i hate to say. but i never felt like i let him down and thats what youre going through. our friends didnt understand either but you are doing the right thing. you wont have any regrets. he must appreciate your sacrifice. you can msg me if you want to share anything.