I wish I didn’t feel so selfish

This post is a hard one to write. It’s one I’ve been contemplating writing but I’m unsure if I should. It’s raw and honest. It’s me. And it’s my feelings and perspective. I don’t know if my husband reads my blog on a regular basis, so I don’t know if he’ll see this. But if he does I hope he can understand where I am coming from. As I hope all my readers can. I’m not in any way attacking Hubs. But this is a big part of me and my life…

A little while back I decided to start a series of posts to give me an outlet to talk about what its like to live with a husband who suffers from chronic pain. I only got as far as talking a bit about Hub’s history and I never really talked too much about the impact that has on me.
Hubs struggles a lot with his pains. And often he pushes himself past his physical limits and causes himself more pain. This usually leave me feeling two things. The first is annoyed that I’m 8 months pregnant and picking up the slack while experiencing pains of my own and the second is guilt. Guilt because I’m annoyed, and guilt because I know the reason he pushed himself past his limit is because he was trying to make the kids and I happy.
I struggle with the guilt. A lot. I feel guilty when I wish he was able to do more. I feel guilty when I’m not as sympathetic as maybe I should be. I feel guilty when I’m annoyed that I want to do something and I know he’s in too much pain. I feel guilty that I have thoughts along the lines of ‘I suck up my pains to do this, why can’t you’ when I know that he’s already pushed himself much further then he should.
I feel guilty that I want him to go back to work RIGHT NOW because I’m tired of dealing with his struggles with veterans affairs and long term disability. I’m tired of hearing him complain, I’m tired of feeling like I’m doing it alone even when he’s here. I’m tired of the mood swings, of his drugs leaving him not all here. Mostly I’m tired of feeling selfish and guilty.
Hubs is only really like this maybe 30% of the time. But its exhausting.
I hate seeing him in pain. I hate that nothing is really going to help him. I hate when he tells me that my rubbing his ankles helps when we both know damn well that the only thing its doing is giving me the illusion that I’m actually helping.
I love my husband. Through sickness and health, for better or worse and so on. I hate that he is hurting. I hate that I can’t help. I hate that I have the thoughts I do and I hate that there doesn’t seem to be much support for the spouses that help their loved ones cope with chronic pains. Because, quite frankly, its hard. And I could use the help.

Love, hugs and more to come later
Lynn

6 thoughts on “I wish I didn’t feel so selfish

  1. these are all completely normal and understandable feelings. there is nothing to feel guilty about, and chronic pain affects not only the sufferer, but also those who suffer with and for the person. i’m sorry for this and hope that you will give yourself permission to have your feelings and to do some things for yourself that bring you joy. best, beth

    • Thanks Beth. I know I’m allowed to feel the way I do, and I do try to do things for myself… Its hard. and I truly wish people were more educated on chronic pain, and that there was more support for those supporting chronic pain sufferers.

      • it must be very challenging at times, to say the least. my old boyfriend worked for a company who dealt w chronic pain patients, and trying to get insurance companies to cover alternative therapies for them ,- yoga, massage, acupuncture, movement classes – and it was an uphill battle. they just want to treat the patient with heavy drugs and/or surgery, which does not help them to get better, only numbs them, or stiffens them in the case of back pain. and that is hard on everyone.

      • That’s exactly the issue. Hubs is on strong meds that alter his personality (not in a big way, but enough that its noticeable) we’ve been researching alternative options but we’ll have to pay for them out of pocket which is going to add up fast! But if it works, its worth it!

  2. I am not in the same situation as you, but can understand your feelings. I think we wives and moms often feel guilt for having the emotions that we do. Our feelings are never wrong unless we react to them the wrong way. It sounds like you are handling everything swimmingly considering. Thinking of you and hoping that you get some rest and relaxation soon!

    • Thank you for your kind words. I agree it is definitely a mom trait to feel guilty for our feelings sometimes. I guess when you feel as though your expected to put everyone else first its hard to remember you matter too!

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