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Struggling to do it all

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  • Struggling to do it all

    I am looking for some guidance in what you as caregivers and wives do to help out the intimacy in the relationship. It has been 2 years since my husband was paralyzed at the C-4 level (no use of any extremeties). I am the only caregiver he has, I work outside the home 5 days a week (he uses the saje system to call me if he has a problem), and we have 3 children under the age of 9. I seem to run and work all the time and am tired. Lately all I hear from him is we have no sex life, why are we married, this is no marriage..... HELP!

  • #2
    OMG, you need this site, are you ever gonna hear it. You MUST get a p/t care giver. Marriage will not survive. Others will probably be better versed. Good Luck.


    • #3
      I agree. We strongly urge families to avoid having the spouse be the caregiver, even part time, unless there are absolutely no other options.

      Some can pull it off, but I have seen this ruin more marriages than any other factor. It is VERY difficult to have a satisfying sexual relationship with the person you provide bowel and bladder care for especially. Some do pull it off, but it is the minority.

      Is he Medicaid eligible? Is he covered under your insurance? Have you explored options for attendant care with the local ILC? Weren't you counseled about this in rehab?

      You may also want to spend some time reading (and post, but be careful!!) on our Relationships and Sexuality forum.

      The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.


      • #4
        KLD is right it is very hard to be a "wife" and a caregiver without something suffering for it. I have had to do it for my husband as well but he is T5 and mostly independant except for occasional assistance and if he gets sick. But .... we have been married over 30 years and have 4 kids ..... our intimate life has taken a backseat over the years ... but truthfully we're both just too tired .

        It sounds like you two are still young so I'm sure you would probably like to get this figured out. I think your husband and you need to have an open and frank discussion about things ..... he's not being very realisitic or fair if he expects you to do all you are doing and be a vamp in the bedroom on top of it all. I have found (and I'm only speaking for myself here) my husband tends to get a little self centred from time to time and I have to not so gently remind him this injury didn't just happen to him it happened to our whole family.

        You are taking care of your family and all that goes with running a household on top of working ...... and have 3 kiddies under the age of 9 ????? .... my guess is you're probably sleep walking most of the time ..... sex is probably the farthest thing from your mind. You need to remember to take care of YOURSELF too or you will be no use to anyone else ..... that's not a cliche .... that's a fact.

        Talk it out and yes visit the R&S forum..... there is alot of chest thumping going on in there but you'll find some very helpful info there as well .... and it can be pretty entertaining !!

        I wish you all the best!

        ~ Be the change you wish to see in the world ~ Mahatma Gandi

        " calling all Angels ...... calling all Angels ....walk me through this one .. don't leave me alone .... calling all Angels .... calling all Angels .... we're tryin' and we're hopin' cause we're not sure how ....... this .... goes ..."
        Jane Siberry


        • #5
          Thank god I found you all. I have the same situation. Mom of 2, husband injured last Nov. Just nice to know someone else out there knows what I am going through.


          • #6
            Sorry no helpful advise though


            • #7
              See if you can get him here on CC, too. We may be able to help him appreciate you a bit more. (If nothing else, I'll beat him about the head and shoulders, the insensitive cad.)

              No, I don't mean what I just said. I was trying to say it so you wouldn't have to.

              If he were mine, I'd ask which he is willing to trade for sex: Your job? Your kids? His bowel and bladder care? Because you're not SuperWife. Choices must be made. I tell my husband this constantly. but about money, not sex. How does one reach adulthood and not realize that...Aw never mind. I'm ranting.

              Seriously, get him a PCA stat. Best advice your marriage will ever get. I've watched for 8 yrs. Those that can do the care and the wife-ing are very rare indeed. Good luck, and good move finding us!

              PS-I'm not a caregiver, I'm an incomplete quad, just so you know.
              Does This Wheelchair Make My Ass Look Fat?


              • #8
                I can truely agree with what is said. I am a mother of three ages 3,4,and 8 and my husband is a c-4/c-5. Very busy in the beginning because you feel so drained with taking care of him and the kids 24/7 plus going to work. When my husband got injured I worked, went to see him in the hospital, basketball practice, and daycare. When he came home his first day it turned out to be my last day of work because I could not get the help that I needed from family or others due to financials. I looked at programs that are ran through the state that will let someone come in for 4-5 hours so many days a week in order to give me a break. So look into that for starters because it is a new journey for you to take on. Our marriage was falling apart in the process because he was 31 and I was 28 full of hormones and just did not know what to do because he was becoming a f/t job. Soon we were able to open up and talk about everything from feelings to positions(did not mean to be blunt). It is a new experience for the both of you because you have to make time and still be there for the kids. Email me and we can talk more about that part. The main thing is that once we talked he begin to see what he could do on his own in order to give me some free time. He would make sure I could sleep by not letting the kids wake me up, we began having breaks and quite times. He compromised with me and I did the same and eventually the romance came back. Not over night, but it came back. We flirt with each other and we compliment one another. Just something small like that can make your day a little brighter. Check into those services soon and try to take quiet time in a warm bath when you can. I do that and just relax so when I come out of the bathroom I kind of feel rejuvenated. Once again it is something small but it helps. Also continue to encourage him to do things on his own. As you see from this website a wheelchair does not stop the show for no one because life still goes on.