How do you get help from husbands?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JPach007, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. JPach007

    JPach007 New Member

    I guess the first question is how do you get him to understand what you are going through. Mine thinks I am superwoman and can work a fulltime job, cook, clean and do laundry. And if I dont, he just cannot understand why. I have told him I have Fibro, I have told him to talk to any of my Dr's, welcomed him to read my stacks of Fibro books.
    What do you do???
  2. geomatos

    geomatos New Member

    would be to marry an understanding man in the first place. I don't know what I would do without my husband. When I have worked all night he often offers to "cook" the next night and he is always willing to clean. Maybe he(your husband) would benefit from having some contact with other spouses that have to pick up "the slack" when their afflicted love ones are having bad days(or years as the case may be). I don't know that this response will help in any way, I hope he can begin to understand that you are not enjoying sitting on the sidelines as life goes by, and you are only left alone and in pain.( I mean you don't lie around eating bon bons getting pampered, right!)I pray that he finds compassion and the strength to support you in your times of need.
  3. whoachief

    whoachief New Member

    I've had 2 really bad days after about a year of fairly good days. I know I should be thankful for a year of good days but when the bad ones return you quickly "remember" how bad bad can be. I have 2 two year olds and 2 five year olds. Today has been about as bad as it could possibly get & my husband spent the day with his best friend at a gun show, knowing how miserable I was. I just can't figure it out!!!!
  4. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Oh, you said "HOW" do you get help from them, NOT "WHO" gets help from them!!!! LOL Just kidding.

    I didn't know that husbands KNEW that they were supposed to help their wives!!!

    I think that should be added to all wedding vows from now on!!!

    My husband has never helped me in 35 years! Through me working full time, raising 3 kids, etc. Never. He is a terrific guy, but was taught that the women take care of the inside and the men take care of the outside. He also works a full-time day job, then farms a lot of acreage in the evenings and on weekends.

    He had never turned on our washing machine or dishwasher until I was in the hospital for a 14-day period around 6 years ago for some heart problems. Then he called me and asked for step-by-step instructions on how to wash clothes and how to load the dishwasher and start it!!

    If I'm too sick to cook and we don't have anything to make sandwiches from, he'll drive into town and pickup a pizza or something before HE would cook anything!

    I've been sick our entire marriage, and he is just now developing arthritis. I don't think he even listens to me when I tell him how bad I feel. Now he just says he is sick "too" so he can't help--that I'm not the only one who is in pain in this house! Oh, brother!! It's just easier to to leave him alone!!


  5. rileyearl

    rileyearl New Member

    Has anyone ever heard a song by Etta James about a chain letter? It might be the only way to get a husband that helps. The song/story goes that you mail your husband to the top name on the list, then add your name to the bottom of the list. You make six copies and mail them off. When your turn comes up, you get several thousand men mailed to you "and one of 'em has got to be better than the one you have now!"

    Of course we're all too tired to wrap a whole husband, so that wouldn't work out for us. But it might be a good thing to visualize the next time you think of going into a serious rage at DH.

    My apologies to the saintly men who hang out here.

  6. windmill

    windmill New Member

    Hi...I NOW have a husband who is amazing. But he wasn't that way at first. Doxy is right about accepting it. I think that others don't really do that as we don't ourselves.
    There are so many little things you can do to get help and understanding from him. But..I don't type that fast to list them all.

    Here is are some imporatant ones:

    Teach him GENTLY!
    Ease him into understanding your condition is apart of you and he needs to embrace ALL of you. Not just the easy parts.
    Your whole includes this condition.
    Talk to him lovingly and gently without judgement.
    It will open the door he keeps closed and will help you also.

    I know the anger...I did that for years. It's from the hurt.
    Teach yourself NOT to hurt...there are great books on this subject.
    By doing this for yourself it will change how you deal with him...thus how he deals with you.

    Good luck and keep faith
  7. 123sandra

    123sandra New Member

    We've been together for 22yrs. It's not all been plain sailing but instead of argueing now we talk it out.
    He accepted the DD when I was diagnosed with it 2yrs ago. He said it was hard at first because he knew I was tired and in pain because I told him, but he couldn't see the pain!! So I got info for him. He has ALWAYS done his share of the housework, looking after the kids and he is a BETTER cook than me!! But when I'm really tired and can't keep my eyes open, instead of moaning he tells me to go and lie down. If I'm in a lot of pain he does more around the house!!
    He's even read over my shoulder when I've been reading your posts, maybe your hubby could 'visit' us. I think this site will open his eyes to the suffering that some of us have! I know it opened MY eyes!!
  8. Jo29

    Jo29 New Member

    I don't think the same things work with all men. Now that I have said that I will tell you what worked for me just yesterday.

    My husband hates to eat out so I told him that I really didn't feel like cooking. I kind of made a deal with him...if he would fix the chicken I would make the rest of the meal. He does like to grill out.

    We ended up with a pretty good meal and would you believe he cleaned up most of the mess after the meal without my having to ask!!

    I think men panic when we ask for help because they usually have no clue as to how to begin. So if we pitch in and help the help.... eventually they feel more secure about themselves and are more willing to help.

    Also, don't forget the praise!!! I was genuinely grateful for my husband's help yesterday.

    Hang in there. It takes time. I went through the same thing with my husband at first. It is very hard for them to watch us go down hill so fast. My husband still has his days.

    hugs to you, Jodi
  9. windmill

    windmill New Member

    Jodi..your right!
  10. JPach007

    JPach007 New Member

    Well...I tried talking to him last night after he wanted to know why I was so tired because I "hadnt done much all day." You can imagine how that went over. I think he is really frustrated because he feels like he cant "fix me." His last comment after all the talking was..."Well I think you are just screwed for life!" I starting crying and told him I know that and there isnt a Dr or pill or diet that is going to make things better.
    Not a good night for us.
  11. windmill

    windmill New Member

    Screwed for life...that's really harsh. I know my husband use to say those sorts of things.
    I would cry to..then think after...yeah buddy and so are you!
    It is really painful.

    Do you have good friends you could turn to?

    There is no quick fix!

    This is going to take time...accepting it without hurt or anger is the first step.
  12. ilovecats94

    ilovecats94 New Member

    Whoachief, your husband sounds like mine, except my 2 boys are grown. One of them lives here. My husband does do all the errands and cooks and does the dishwasher most of the time.

    I have to admit I do spend a lot of day time on here, but this is my only source of support. I have no parents, no brothers, no sisters, no other close relatives.

    I think there are the letters for families of those with FMS/CFIDS posted previously on this site and at another site.

    It's really hard, sometimes, to get him out of the garage. He works on a military Russian jeep and getting him to come in the house just to have conversation can be rough. I get tired of being alone all the time. I don't mind it during the day, but in the late afternoon, when I go down to the family room, some conversation would be nice.

    Jpach007, I think you would benefit from the letter for families of FMS/CFIDS too. Possibly I could find that and post it on this site. I am sure it has been posted before so, feel I could do this.

    I think husbands, especially, don't want to know that their wife has an illness of pain that will never go away. I don't even know whether they understand it could get worse over time.

    Jlh, I actually had my husband ask me to wrap these little cocktail weiners in the crescent rolls last night as we were having company. Well, I wasn't wrapping them as well as he did, so I told him that he would have to accept the way I was doing it.

    Then, he had opened 3 jars of spaghetti sauce and we have to recycle, so I was bent over the kitchen sink with my back going in cramping pain, rinsing these 3 jars out to put them in the recycle container.

    I told him if he wanted me to help more in the kitchen, I would need a tall stool to sit on. Something that I could move around to where I was having to work. I have told him this before. I'm willing to help, but I need help to do it (help him in the kitchen).

    I'll look for that letter and post it here if I can find it.

    Big hugs to all,

  13. rileyearl

    rileyearl New Member

    I'm sorry it's so rough at your house right now. I think what your husband meant was that he's screwed for life. Who is going to wait on him now? That was so mean. Please see my earlier post here for a fun little vacation from reality, then do a search for "spoons". It's a story I heard and posted a few days ago. Maybe you can give him a visual explanation if he won't read anything or talk to your doctor. Here's a hug ((()))!!!

  14. AnneTheresa

    AnneTheresa Member

    I don't have the answers, just a couple of thoughts:

    How to promote understanding: I found it was helpful for my family to hear about others who were living with fibromyalgia. For example: 'this person's wife is a wheelchair' or 'that person's mother takes morphine for pain'. That sort of outside exposure to fibromyalgia was helpful for my family's understanding of my condition.

    How to get help from hubby: One thing I've learned about the men in my life is they don't really know how to help around the house (even though I've tried to teach them). My partner and grown sons help if and when I ask them to do specific, detailed chores. If I hope for them to see a mess and figure out what to do about it, I'm in for a huge disappointment.

    God bless,
    Anne Theresa
  15. nina2

    nina2 New Member

    This is a second marriage for both of us. He married me this way.

    I believe it to be more difficult in relationships where there has been a change to adapt to. That has to be very difficult to do as this DD is very hard to understand, even for us , more so for others.

    My husband helps me by knowing my limits and understanding that I need to take my time and rest in between.

    He is not perfect and sometimes he expects more than I can handle , this is when I need to remind him "no can do".

    It seems to work and I appreciate him for it.

    Just do what you can do and don't knock yourself. In time he will adjust and get with the program.
  16. Leenerbups

    Leenerbups New Member

    After I asked this question of my doctor, he told me to bring my husband in at my next appointment.
    It was my doctor who spoke to him of how ill I truly was and the help I needed, and that he should be helping me around the house etc.

    It shamed my husband into helping,(did'nt last long though) because lets face it, a doctor should not have had to even told him that. Which is why he is my ex. Selfish, selfish man.
  17. hurts2003

    hurts2003 New Member

    I have one of the best men God ever put on earth. Today is our 19th wedding annivesary. To start with, his mother taught he and his brother to cook and clean a house just as good as any woman could. (This is a good thought for any of you out there with sons, your futher daughter-in-laws will love you for it.) He has always helped me around the house even before I got Fibro. I was diagnosed about 7 years ago. I still work 4 days(28 hrs at used furniture store in sales & secretary) a week and he works 4 days(about 50hrs). I know he is tired after working all day driving and handleing dirty uniforms all day (works on a route for a uniform rental service, drives 1200 miles a week in a truck with no A/C). if he comes home and dinner is not cooking, he cooks it. If the dishes or clothes isn't washed, he gets my 15yr old daughter to help out and he does it.

    He never complains but i know he gets aggrivated at times.

    I've really been in a big fog this week. It's now shrimp baiting season in SC and I bought his permit last Wendesday for him, by the time he needed it to go shrimping Friday evening, we couldn't find them. And the bad thing is I still have no clue where I put them, the last time I remember seeing them was when I got back from the DNR office with them and left them on the van seat. Since we could not go shrimping without them, he took me out to eat BBQ. That's OK the guys we ususally go with didn't catch any anyways. He even takes me with him shrimping on Fri. & Sat. nights, I drive the boat for him (the only woman out of 3 or 4 groups that go). I knew he was really upset about it but he didn't say a cruel word about it, he just teased me that's all.

    He is very supportive of me and worries about me a lot. I'm going to start a Cymbalta trial in the next few weeks and he's really worried about the fact that I won't be able to take any pain meds while I on the study (58 weeks).
  18. dafoefan

    dafoefan New Member

    I would recommend taking him to all your doctor appointments. Let him ask the dr questions. To get him to go with you, tell him because of the fibro fog you need him to help you remember everything. I really think that my husband talking to the dr and asking questions made a huge difference.

    I also email my kids and husband the leters to friends type info that I find on the net.

    I quit my 20 year career, which provided our healthcare and was our larger income. That was a huge impact of course. He not only accepted it, but convinced me to get cleaning help. I would never have in a million years imagined that this could have happened, I am proof that anything is possible!

    You need to continue to take him with you to the dr, since many men have short attention spans!

    Good luck, I pray we all get the support we need.

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