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Divorce & Money

confused902
Posts: 11
Joined: Sep 2012

Hi,
My issue is our marriage is falling apart. My husband is the patient and I the caregiver. I don't think cancer is the main reason for me wanting out, I guess its a bunch of reasons. I love my husband but I don't exist as a person anymore. He works and does chemo once a month and is laid up for about a week. Then life goes on as usual. But we are not getting along. I have my own health issues but no one cares. I work full time and I am doing everything around the house. When my husband is feeling good he is out in the garage working on an old car or spending too much money. While I am the one cooking cleaning shopping paying bills or juggling bills basically doing it all. And even if he was cured I would still be doing all of this while he does everything he wants to have a great life. No one ever asks me "hey how are you" or "do you need anything".

I told my husband that I am not happy and that he has no clue how I feel, he said he is happy. So I guess there isn't a problem. I know I don't or can't know how he feels with what he is going through but I can't just forget about me. People look at me and think I am a ***** because I am thinking about me. But how can I care for anyone if I'm not all there or at least content? I have put him first since the day I met him and I feel lost, hopeless, alone. I have no friends, family is too far away. Kids are busy. I'm just in this hole alone and I'm falling apart.

We obviously have money problems since he has been going through chemo for 3 years and my husband told me its my fault we are broke. I am shocked. I thought we are broke because he only works about 2.5 or 3 weeks a month. But don't get me wrong if he is ill I don't want him to go to work. But while I work long hours and juggle bills to provide a good home and keep us afloat it turns out this is MY fault. As I sit here crying while I type this I am shocked I let my life get this way. I was the rowdy girl that stood up for herself and got what she wanted but at 47 I look at my life and see I am a failure.

I want to leave him but I know he won't be able to handle his own bills and he has no family that can help him. He has no clue what I do to keep him alive. We travel to Cancer Treatment Centers of America so there is so much more to do with scheduling, driving or flying etc. The doctors say they can't cure him just control it. And if I leave I know he will not be able to do this alone. So while I am trying to keep him alive I am killing myself. I write this and think wow what a ***** I am to think about myself when here this man is ill. But are you supposed to forget you exist for someone else? Do I stay to keep him alive and then worry about myself later?

I love my husband and he has hurt me dearly and I am so unhappy because I don't think he cares about me. He has been my best friend but I am so fed up my head just screams at me to pack my stuff, get an apartment, move out and be done with it. Then he would see all that I do and juggle but then there is no turning back.

Lisa

Noellesmom
Posts: 1302
Joined: Aug 2010

You need to take a deep breath, Lisa, and understand you are not the first, nor will you be the last, partner of a cancer patient to feel this way. Everyone needs to feel appreciated.

I'm thinking these problems existed before the cancer and that your husband's personality has always been this way, just a bit self-serving. Some people do get that way after they get the cancer diagnosis, of course, and want to live their life the way they want it regardless of the cost to loved ones.

Have you thought about finding a professional to talk to? I know money is an issue but perhaps your job offers this as a benefit or you could visit your minister or find a close friend in which to confide? You need to talk to someone. A lot.

No matter what you end up doing, leaving or staying, please understand your husband has to except responsibility for his own care and he will develop resources to get to his treatments and appointments. It is not all on you unless you choose to have it that way. He needs to take control of his own care until and unless he is unable, not just unwilling.

Breathe, Lisa, and remember to exhale. You HAVE to take care of yourself.

Let us know how you are doing. Find someone to talk to soon.

djs123
Posts: 102
Joined: Jan 2012

I just read your post and wanted to check in on you and see how you are doing. First of all, you are not a failure. You are stressed beyond reason and overwhelmed with trying to be everything for everyone. I'm assuming as the other post mentioned that these problems existed before your husbands cancer and perhaps if he was healthy and there wasn't all this pressure on you, you would be much better equipped to handle his disregard for your feelings. My guess is, "he just doesn't get it". and you have been the coordinator and backbone of your marriage from the start.
If you haven't talked to a professional or taken any action yet, I would strongly suggest, that perhaps you contact your local hospital and see what kind of free support groups they have. Many communities list support groups in the newspaper. Perhaps a senior center would be another place to start, they may be able to guide you, or even visiting nurse service.
The worse thing for you to do now is isolate yourself. You need to express and have your feelings validated and your husband is not the person able to do this. Sometime the men in our lives fall short in this category.
You may want to sit down at some point and make a few lists, what you like about him, what his good points are, when and how he has supported you in the past. The make the other list, the things you dislike about him, etc. Sometimes looking at all this on paper can help.
I wish you good luck and empathize completely. Take care of yourself and God bless.

confused902
Posts: 11
Joined: Sep 2012

Thank you to the both of you.
The update isn't any better. We just got back from the hospital and the cancer has grown and now spread. His chemo will be even worse than the last one. And as much as I'd like to leave or even separate so I can really figure out what to do I can't. I can't leave him like this now. I type that and realize how crazy that sounds. Maybe I will be blessed in the end. The doctors say that will never cure him and God knows I don't want him to die but all his family can do down south is call and they hardly do that. Everything is left up to me. I did speak to a counselor while we were at the hospital, the poor lady probably needs counseling herself now. I did feel better. I've told my son how I really feel about how things are (maybe he will help but I doubt it). Other than that not much has changed. I doubt they will. So I hope the support world and the counseling world is ready to hear me vent from time to time because I think I'm going to need to.

Thanks again.

Noellesmom
Posts: 1302
Joined: Aug 2010

Often, confused. As often as you get a chance. This board is just one place.

I'm sorry the cancer has grown and spread.

Remember to breathe, and just as importantly, remember to exhale. Do not walk around all the time feeling like you are holding your breath waiting for the next bit of bad news.

If you are staying, make sure you are doing what you need to do to take care of yourself. Your husband has needs but so do you and yours are important, also.

If you want to exchange private emails, I will respond.

You are not alone. Your situation is not as uncommon as you might think.

It will all work out for the best in the end.

djs123
Posts: 102
Joined: Jan 2012

I'm so sorry, sometimes life just stinks. I'm praying for you, your husband and your family. I encourage you to vent, it's important to let it out and take care of yourself. You do that and you're better able to take care of yourself and your family as well.
God bless.

confused902
Posts: 11
Joined: Sep 2012

Again thank you everyone. Noellesmom I would love to exchange emails. Things haven't changed much. I've been quiet lately and he picks ups on it. He actually has washed dishes 2 days in a row this week. It sounds silly but working the long hours I have its a blessing not to come home to a sink full of dishes. I will continue to pray and vent :) and hopefully I will get through this. Thanks again everyone for your kind words.

Lisa

Noellesmom
Posts: 1302
Joined: Aug 2010

I'm glad to hear he is making some effort. Sometimes it is difficult for a person who has been very ill to remember how much effort has been and is being put forth for them. Being happy there are no dishes to wash after a long day at work is not silly at all.

Continue to find ways to take care of yourself. Encourage your husband to take responsibility for himself (if he can wash dishes he can wash and dry his own clothes). The more he is able to do for himself the better he will feel physically and mentally.

Hugs, Lisa. I know this is hard.

djs123
Posts: 102
Joined: Jan 2012

I agree with Lisa, maybe the less you do for your husband and the more he is able to do for himself, the better he will feel about himself.

I'm terribly sorry to hear about his prognosis, your road will be very difficult so it is important to take care of yourself. Even if it's going to a coffee shop or a Barnes and Noble to relax for 30 minutes on your own.

I don't know what your schedule is but my friend has met many people through a website called "Meetups". I'm sure if you google it you can learn more about it.

Btw, I also strongly suggest, taking a drive, parking your car in a deserted parking lot, and letting it all out from time to time. Cry scream, pound the steering wheel, whatever. If you don't drive, take a long walk and burn off some steam. Take it from one who knows, it helps. I have a boxing bag in the basement that I turn to from time to time. Unfortunately I've got a bit of arthritis in my fingers now, so I've put that on the back burner and will perhaps start punching a pillow.

Take care, know there are people out there that understand, especially women, there's nothing like having a female friend to share with, helps ease the burden.

God bless

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