What should I do?

I'm honestly trying my hardest to stay as logical as possible right now. If it's not one thing, it's another. I cannot deny that things have been better at home with my husband. He's slowly begun to actually be able to pick himself up and function like a normal human being, instead of using his anxiety as a crutch and an excuse that he can't. I accepted shit like that for far longer than I ever should have.

Since becoming poly, it's been made clear to me what I really deserve. My thoughts and feelings have been validated instead of consistently being expected to put his anxiety first. It's given me life. It's given me nerve to push things forward and cut anything out that gets in my way. Gradually, my husband has grown to learn and respect that.

However, these low points are still happening. Less frequently, but they're still there and they're horribly dramatic. Even though my BF and his wife- half of our family- all found out they're going to be losing their jobs today, that was not an issue of focus for my husband. His issue of focus became about a misunderstanding between he and his GF about me. This turned into an argument lasting about 5 hours. My husband switching between feeling like a failure and having an anxiety attack while simply trying to make dinner, to ranting about his GF about how she completely wronged him in their discussion from earlier. Yea, he disrespected her, but it was because she disrespected him first, which wasn't how it went at all, but he still perceived it as such.

Not only did this mental break require our family to drop everything in order for them to come and help me deal with him (applying for jobs, eating, etc), but he still made it completely impossible for us to help him- moping about every single move that's made that he decides to over-analyse (ex: not telling him "it's okay", leaving the room, etc). I really don't know what to do anymore. This all started with me expressing hesitation on bringing things I want to him in fear of hurting his feelings or causing problems. And that's exactly what happened even though when he and I actually discussed that, it seemed to go well. It just kind of feels like there has to be issue with someone somewhere at all times.

I'm now back in a place where I'm considering talking with our roommate about she and I renting a place together once our lease on this house is up. I haven't wanted to do that because of how much things have improved, but regardless of the improvement on his part, going from having these issues every day to once or twice every could of weeks still doesn't sit well with me for someone I want to be living with. I want to feel like I used to with him, but maybe we can actually appreciate each other more if we lived and managed our lives apart for a while. I just really don't know what else to do anymore.
 

tenK

New member
I think moving out to give yourself some stability sounds like a really good move, but I do think you should be alerting him that this is where your mind is at. This is probably going to be a shock to him, and I think he deserves a chance to really see how much his actions and behaviours affect you before you pull the trigger and leave the house. It sounds like any time he has a crisis, someone comes rushing to his aid. Has anyone ever thought to just not? If he's having a meltdown because of an argument with his other partner, why is it your responsibility to even listen to him, let alone calm him down? Argument with partner = resolution with partner in my book. You can vent to a willing friend if that's part of it, but it's unfair for him to make you that person every time, especially if she is someone you are close to as well. If you stated clearly that you are sorry that this happened and that he feels so bad, but that you have things to do and dinner to cook and are not prepared to discuss it with him (either ever, or more compassionately, until a few hours have passed and he's calmed down), what would he do?

He's not dealing with any of his emotions because he is used to others dealing with them for him. Long term, this is to his detriment as a human. Short term, this is to your relationship's detriment. Loving someone does not mean dropping everything for them the minute life becomes difficult for them. You seem to see this yourself, and recognise that actually, your bf and his wife's loss of a job were the biggest problems that needed tackling that day - I suggest you trust your instincts more and tell him that. "We can talk about your problem later. Today I need to focus on x and y and then give support to bf/wife because they have just lost their jobs". You need to maintain your own boundaries or you will burn out and be of no use to anyone.
 
Last edited:

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I am sorry you struggle. :(

I agree with tenK. This all has to stop. You could maintain better boundaries.

I also think you guys could stop trying to deal with this yourselves and seek professional care instead.

Not only did this mental break require our family to drop everything in order for them to come and help me deal with him (applying for jobs, eating, etc), but he still made it completely impossible for us to help him- moping about every single move that's made that he decides to over-analyse (ex: not telling him "it's okay", leaving the room, etc). I really don't know what to do anymore.

He's having mental break downs? To me your husband sounds like he might be mentally ill and needs professional care. The crippling anxiety, the hyper focus, overanalyzing, the outburts... has he ever been checked out by a doctor? I would encourage that. Something doesn't sound right. If he cannot handle his conditions on his own, maybe it's time to see a professional about it. That's more appropriate than overleaning on you guys. He has to attend to his health appropriately.

At the same time... if you have been living with this for so long that you are at the end of your rope? You want to move out to gain some peace for yourself and have a time out? Take the break and attend to YOUR health appropriately. You sound like you are burning out. Maybe YOU want to have a check up with a doctor and let them know what you deal with at home.

Inform husband you plan to move out at the end of the lease. Or at least inform his next of kin if you think the news would lead him to harm himself. (And if he does try -- be firm and call 911.)

You don't have to hurt yourself by staying there past what you can take. You do not exist to be someone else's life raft. Especially if you might feel you are getting sucked under.

But before you move, give someone in his family the heads up that he's going to be living on his own at the end of this lease. Or tell both him AND a close family member so he can start preparing an alternate support network. You cannot be his everything. That's not reasonable.

I want to feel like I used to with him, but maybe we can actually appreciate each other more if we lived and managed our lives apart for a while.

Hopefully living apart encourages him to get it together and seek care so you can arrive at this place like you hope.

But it might have to start with you letting go of the rope by moving out, and letting his daily coping/emotional management be his to deal with.

If he needs help with it, the right person to talk to is a professional. It is not right to turn YOU into his life raft/therapist/everything person.

GL!
Galagirl
 
Last edited:

Marcus

Well-known member
He's slowly begun to actually be able to pick himself up and function like a normal human being, instead of using his anxiety as a crutch and an excuse that he can't. I accepted shit like that for far longer than I ever should have.

Regardless of the mental health of your husband, this entire post is drenched in resentment. In my opinion, your discussing getting a different place with a roommate is critical. This life of resentment isn't doing anyone any favors. What you have currently, seems to be a hot-bed of crazy-mouth.

For example:

This turned into an argument lasting about 5 hours.

Oh hell no.
 
Thank you for all your responses. Everyone seems to be on a similar page, though I should clarify a few things:

He IS seeking professional help and has been for a while. This has been an ongoing problem which we have brought to the attention of his therapist, to which he has said the same thing: He depends on us to manage his emotions and that is not okay. His therapist has told both me as well as his GF that we are welcome to join anytime we feel the need to. In between those times, he's gone on his own and come out feeling better. I know that's been justified in some instances, but I know there are issues that are not addressed. That being said, I'll probably be going with him to his next appointment because of the following facts:

We've all placed boundaries on these arguments.
A.)The need to put disagreements down and worry about bigger problems at hand. While he seems to agree with that when things are calm, he does not allow it when these breaks begin. He makes it impossible to console him, and accuses us of not caring about his feelings when we try to refocus our attention on other priorities.
B.) Our need to separate and take a breath when things get out of hand. His therapist agreed that would be a good idea, and he agreed to the boundary. However, when the time comes to practice it, he won't let me.
If I walk, he jumps in his car and drives after me. If I try to drive he will stand in front of my car door, stand in front of or behind my car, and sometimes even jumps in my car. It's then held against me that it's not fair to him that I walk away, even though it's been made clear numerous times that it's not wrong to need space for a minute AND he agreed to it.

My husband is aware of the resentment in our relationship and it's something we've both acknowledged is going to take work on both our parts. The resentment has been a huge contributing factor to his anxiety. A huge issue is the fact that we end up trapped if we try to help him at all. And if we try to explain any part of his thinking in ways that he doesn't want to hear, he sees it as is not caring about his feelings, even when we do our best to acknowledge what he's feeling. There's a lot of "well, fuck me then."

I really do want to feel like I used to. I want to do the right thing for everyone. I hate that he lives in this anxiety, but this all got started by him misinterpreting his GF trying to tell him I was worried about hurting his feelings and his mind interpreted it as her saying I was afraid to talk to him.

Even if that WAS what I said, this just validates why I'm hesitant.
 

kdt26417

Official Greeter
Staff member
Hi IndigoTiger,

It sounds like your husband is absorbed with his own problems, and not even aware of how he is affecting others. You should probably move out as soon as the lease on your house is up. In addition, your husband should probably get some professional help, although that is for him to take care of.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.
 
Thank you for all your responses. Everyone seems to be on a similar page, though I should clarify a few things:

He IS seeking professional help and has been for a while. This has been an ongoing problem which we have brought to the attention of his therapist, to which he has said the same thing: He depends on us to manage his emotions and that is not okay. His therapist has told both me as well as his GF that we are welcome to join anytime we feel the need to. In between those times, he's gone on his own and come out feeling better. I know that's been justified in some instances, but I know there are issues that are not addressed. That being said, I'll probably be going with him to his next appointment because of the following facts:

We've all placed boundaries on these arguments.
A.)The need to put disagreements down and worry about bigger problems at hand. While he seems to agree with that when things are calm, he does not allow it when these breaks begin. He makes it impossible to console him, and accuses us of not caring about his feelings when we try to refocus our attention on other priorities.
B.) Our need to separate and take a breath when things get out of hand. His therapist agreed that would be a good idea, and he agreed to the boundary. However, when the time comes to practice it, he won't let me.
If I walk, he jumps in his car and drives after me. If I try to drive he will stand in front of my car door, stand in front of or behind my car, and sometimes even jumps in my car. It's then held against me that it's not fair to him that I walk away, even though it's been made clear numerous times that it's not wrong to need space for a minute AND he agreed to it.

My husband is aware of the resentment in our relationship and it's something we've both acknowledged is going to take work on both our parts. The resentment has been a huge contributing factor to his anxiety. A huge issue is the fact that we end up trapped if we try to help him at all. And if we try to explain any part of his thinking in ways that he doesn't want to hear, he sees it as is not caring about his feelings, even when we do our best to acknowledge what he's feeling. There's a lot of "well, fuck me then."

I really do want to feel like I used to. I want to do the right thing for everyone. I hate that he lives in this anxiety, but this all got started by him misinterpreting his GF trying to tell him I was worried about hurting his feelings and his mind interpreted it as her saying I was afraid to talk to him.

Even if that WAS what I said, this just validates why I'm hesitant.
 
Hi IndigoTiger,

It sounds like your husband is absorbed with his own problems, and not even aware of how he is affecting others. You should probably move out as soon as the lease on your house is up. In addition, your husband should probably get some professional help, although that is for him to take care of.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.

He's aware that it's affecting others. We've all been telling him this for months. I just don't think he fully grasps how much. No matter how much we tell him. If we tell him in the low moments it's "well fuck me for having feelings then."

If we tell him when things calm down, it either pushes him to another breakdown or he acknowledges it and says he's trying to fix it. It's not as frequent, but there's still fundamental points that he completely dismisses or invalidates with his own feelings when we try to explain it.

I'm constantly flipping between feeling like complete shit for not being able to be there for him like I should, and feeling like this is super fucked up and there's nothing I can do other than keep trying to talk him down or walk away.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I am glad to hear he has a therapist working with him.

His therapist has told both me as well as his GF that we are welcome to join anytime we feel the need to.

I suggest you take advantage of this and learn what your caregiver role is for your patient husband if you are going to take that role on.

If you don't want to be his caregiver, then you need to get yourself out of this role.

And perhaps find companion help or a therapy dog or whatever his therapist thinks is the appropriate path so BOTH of you can be healthy dealing with his illnesses.

A.)The need to put disagreements down and worry about bigger problems at hand.

Dealing with job loss... WHOSE biggest current problem/need is that? Yours? The BF/GF people?

What if HIS biggest current problem is dealing with a brain swirling, overwhelming, panic attack that is overtaking him so he cannot think straight?

While he seems to agree with that when things are calm, he does not allow it when these breaks begin. He makes it impossible to console him, and accuses us of not caring about his feelings when we try to refocus our attention on other priorities.

You seem to think he is still able to think clearly even when in the midst of a mental break down. How's that supposed to work? :confused:

If at this time you do not have the skills to console him in the way he needs so you can TAKE AWAY from his misery? Don't keep trying to talk to him and console him the "wrong" way. At least then you are not ADDING to his misery. Take the pot off the boil. It will still be hot, but over time if left alone, it will cool off.

If you keep increasing the heat/stimulus... when does it ever get to cool off? You keep poking the bear. That's how you end up at 5 hour long circle conversations that go nowhere.

When he is NOT having a panic attack/episode thing? Talk to the therapist together about making a coping plan/coping box for the next one so it goes better. And what items would need to go in there.

B.) Our need to separate and take a breath when things get out of hand. His therapist agreed that would be a good idea, and he agreed to the boundary. However, when the time comes to practice it, he won't let me.
If I walk, he jumps in his car and drives after me. If I try to drive he will stand in front of my car door, stand in front of or behind my car, and sometimes even jumps in my car. It's then held against me that it's not fair to him that I walk away, even though it's been made clear numerous times that it's not wrong to need space for a minute AND he agreed to it.

This is inappropriate behavior. At the same time, you cannot "logic" with someone who is in emotional distress and fears being abandoned. Does he need someone to sit with so he can let you go catch a break? Then find a sitter. Maybe a list of "sitter" numbers to call is part of the coping plan.

Of course you need breaks. Schedule those when he is NOT distressed too. So you have the energy when you DO have emergencies. Firemen do not rest during the fire. They rest BETWEEN fires.

And make the "fire plan" when things are calm. People don't start drawing maps with arrows pointing to the exits in the middle of a fire. They do that "preparedness" stuff BEFORE.

Make sure the plan includes what to do when he is in distress. Things for him to do. Things for you to do.

Try other approaches. Could you call the therapist and hand the phone to him? And THEY can talk him down while you take a "secondary support" role?
  • Make the call if he's shaking too much from panic to dial right.
  • Bring him a comfy blanket or pillow from his care box to hold while talking on the phone.
  • Make him tea in the kitchen for after he's done with the phone.

Know your place on his care team, and work YOUR role. Don't try to be his therapist or try to be ALL roles.

I'm constantly flipping between feeling like complete shit for not being able to be there for him like I should, and feeling like this is super fucked up and there's nothing I can do other than keep trying to talk him down or walk away.

I think you could drop the "should" and replace it with "could."

Then do the things you could do, and don't sweat the rest. You cannot be his everything and solve this illness for him. You can only do your role or portion.

Make plans to attend counseling to get help in HOW to get regular breaks, how to bette understand your role/portion, and help develop better coping skills with your patient.

  • HIS problem is coping with anxiety and panic attacks or whatever else it is.
  • YOUR problem is learning what your appropriate caregiver role is, the skills to do it well, and learning how to maintain healthy boundaries with a patient person when he tries to get you to do something that is outside your scope.

You don't sound like you are in a regular relationship with him. You are in a "patient-caregiver" relationship. That changes things. This extreme "caregiver shadowing" where he doesn't want you out of sight is a drag, and you have to figure out how to deal with it if you are going to continue to be his part time caregiver.

I don't know if this helps you. My father has dementia. My mother used to pussyfoot around him because she was afraid he's going to have a cow. Over the years I had to teach her how to cope better as his caregiver because there is no such thing as "cow free" with my dad. All you can hope for is "small cows, fewer and far apart" and work toward that goal. Be realistic about what we can get from Dad with his illness.

Part of it was getting him on correct medication to reduce violent behavior.

Part of it was her learning to better manage her patient. She had to learn to stop telling him triggering things too far in advance. She thought it was giving him time to "prepare" so he would not freak out. All she was actually doing was giving his brain time to grow the cow bigger.

Tell him he's going to the doctor a week ahead of time? He would ruminate, build it up bigger in his head, get more and more anxious, freak out, and have time to pull a stunt. Big cow. Several days long cow. UGH.

Tell him at 8 AM breakfast that he is going to the doc at 10 AM and then the library (which he likes) and we can get an ice cream (which he also likes)? He's going to fuss about "nobody tells me anything!" for a bit, get through the doctor grumpy (but does get THROUGH IT) and then he will latch on to the things he likes instead. Smaller cow because how much cow can he grow in 2 hours? It's over with fast and he can move on to pleasant things.

She had to learn to stop focussing on "avoid all cows" and focus on "help him move ON faster."

If you are going to remain in a partial caregiver role to your patient husband, you have to figure out how to cope as his caregiver. You do not have a regular husband. You have a PATIENT husband. You might also need time to digest/grieve that. Dealing with chronic illness is different than acute illness.

He's aware that it's affecting others. We've all been telling him this for months. I just don't think he fully grasps how much. No matter how much we tell him. If we tell him in the low moments it's "well fuck me for having feelings then."

If he already aware... why do you keep on telling him? How much more aware can he be? :confused:

What behavior would you like for him to move on to doing? Have you tried just asking for the behavior you want directly and skipping these "awareness lectures?"

(cont.)
 
Last edited:

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Do you resent him for having an illness or condition he didn't pick to have?

Why can't a blind guy see? Cuz blind.
  • He can still get around himself. Just might need accommodations first like someone getting him a cane and teaching how to use it.

Why can't a deaf guy hear? Cuz deaf.
  • He can still answer the door himself. Just might need accommodations like the lights wired to go on and off when the door bell rings. Might need electrician to come do up the house.

Why can't crippling anxiety/mental health patient not understand stuff we tell him when he's having a fit? Cuz mental health patient is having a fit.
  • What accommodations does he require? Both when he's having an episode and when he is not so he can do his stuff himself?

Stop "explaining" when he's having a fit. Seek ways to move this forward. Not keep riding the same hamster wheel round and round. I can imagine that is frustrating for all parties.

His illnesses doesn't mean he gets a free pass where he cannot be responsible for his stuff. He's still responsible for his stuff. But if his illnesses need some accommodations, go to the therapist and figure out what his particular "cane" might be so he CAN do his stuff.

Change your approach and your expectations but still hold him accountable. Don't try to work it like he is NOT a mental health patient.

A huge issue is the fact that we end up trapped if we try to help him at all.

So don't help him. Then you are not trapped. Offer to dial his therapist for him so he can talk to them about whatever it is instead. He can choose to talk to to them or not. Let him own it.

And if we try to explain any part of his thinking in ways that he doesn't want to hear, he sees it as is not caring about his feelings, even when we do our best to acknowledge what he's feeling. There's a lot of "well, fuck me then."

Isn't it the therapist's job to help him sort out his thinking? Why are you doing the therapist's job?

I'm constantly flipping between feeling like complete shit for not being able to be there for him like I should, and feeling like this is super fucked up and there's nothing I can do other than keep trying to talk him down or walk away.

You are human and have personal limitations. You need to sleep. You need to eat. You need breaks. You cannot be a machine go-go-go for him 24/7. Make peace with the fact that you are human and not SuperHuman.

Talk to the therapist about other approaches for better helping him to cope with his panic attacks/episodes. How you can be his CANE and assist, but he is still the BRAIN in charge of doing his stuff. He makes his coping care box and he goes down the list. He may need your help finding the box with his management plan in it if he's in the middle of an episode, but once found he works down his plan.

If you need to walk away for a while to rest and regroup before trying new approaches? Take a vacation and GO. When my father started this mental health path with the Alzheimer he was a mess and very taxing. Mom was burning out because she was having to learn SO much SO fast. I sent her to her mother for a break.

You sound on the verge of burnout. Please take care of you first if you need to step away for a bit to rest and regroup. You burning out will help nobody. I hope things get better for you over time. This sounds really rough. :(

Galagirl
 
Last edited:
Thank you for all your honest responses. Thank you to GalaGirl for investing so much time in your response. You reminded me of a lot of things that I needed to be reminded of.

As far as your question of resentment. I don't resent him for being mentally ill. I resent him for the effects of it. For the damage that it's done to our relationship and our life. I resent the fact that I ignored it and enabled him for years, only making everything so much worse. I feel taken for granted and taken advantage of.

All that being said, things are better than they have been. They are better than I ever thought they would be. He's grown in ways that I was never expecting. I suppose that is what makes all of this so much more frustrating. His breaks are less frequent, his smaller breaks are more controlled. But the times that they are not, when boundaries are crossed and he tries to tell me I'm the one with the problem, I get stuck in a hopeless headspace. I start to feel like he is more aware and controlled than he lets on and that he just doesnt care to improve anymore.

I don't deny that I have my own issues, but when boundaries that were agreed on are ignored and made out to be part of the problem, that's when I start to feel like these may be permanent red flags.


However, after a few days and my consulting a friend of mine who is a therapist, I was given a few resources that may help.
Husband and I sat down and talked a long time about how to utilize these resources. We're in the process of building a Crisis Prevention Plan and I'm going to be going with him for his next therapy appointment so we can address these things together.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
Glad to hear you are working together to make his "crisis plan" or "crisis care box" or whatever you want to call it.

FWIW?

As far as your question of resentment. I don't resent him for being mentally ill. I resent him for the effects of it. For the damage that it's done to our relationship and our life. I resent the fact that I ignored it and enabled him for years, only making everything so much worse. I feel taken for granted and taken advantage of.

I wonder if you mean "resent" or "regret." Like...

  • I regret the damage that it's done to our relationship and our life. I regret the fact that I ignored it and enabled him for years, only making everything so much worse.

Maybe reframing helps you make peace with the past behaviors so you can focus on the today behaviors. They sound promising -- you got help from a therapist friend, found resources, are working on his care plan.

This includes working on YOUR care plan too, right? To prevent burn out, the taken for granted/not appreciated thing?

But the times that they are not, when boundaries are crossed and he tries to tell me I'm the one with the problem, I get stuck in a hopeless headspace.

Do what I do with my dad. AGREE!

He thinks I have a problem for having boundaries because he does not want to exercise self control. I think I have a problem -- a problem patient! Am I going to argue with the mental health patient about the nuanced difference? Nope. Faster to just agree and then move on to the behavior I want and just play the broken record and count.

He gets extra chances, because he's a mental health patient. Like 5 chances rather than the usual 3 chances I give my kid when she's having a fit.

But I'm not changing my boundaries. I put them there for a reason.

Like one time he pitched a fit at the hospital insisting they stole his watch. I offered to help him search his street clothes. He told me all nasty "You think I'm dumb? I looked already! Stop being a controlling bitch like your mother!" and the went back to yelling at the discharge people.

I took a step back, crossed my arms, and let him have his cow with the person.

After a lot of hooha, they found it in his pants pocket, like I figured. He did his classic non-apology apology to the desk people... how he was a vet, he's got ptsd, blah blah. He even managed a "I'm sorry. I just had a procedure and I'm crabby." Which is still a non apology apology but wow... he actually managed a new one!

Then he snapped his fingers at me with "let's go" to me and wanted to stomp off to the car. He kept on walking. I stayed where I was. He came back to me asking me what my problem was.

I told him if he was missing one of his apologies.

"You could apologize to the desk people for your bad behavior. These are total strangers. I am your family. I deserve the same apology if not BETTER. So I'm not moving until I got one."

First he tried the same non-apology -- I'm a PTSD vet, boo hoo, poor lil ol me. (He likest to milk that one to get his way a lot. Dad's a bully.)

"You have to say "I'm sorry I talked nasty when you were trying to help. Next time I will say "no, thank you" rather than talking nasty."

"I don't have to do that. I'm an adult!"

"You ARE an adult. Act like one and stop acting like a brat. I saw you do it with the desk clerk people. You have to say "I'm sorry I talked nasty when you were trying to help. Next time I will say "no, thank you" rather than talking nasty."

If that is too hard or too long, I'll take "I'm sorry I was nasty."

"I'm the father. I don't have to do that."

"You are an adult. You do not have to apologize. I'm am adult with car keys. Don't have to give nasty people a ride. I am confident as an adult, you can figure out the bus or find a taxi. When you talk nasty to me, I expect an apology.

If the long one is too hard or too long, I'll take "I'm sorry I was nasty."

"C'mon, we have to go we are going to be late."

"YOU are going to be late to your next appointment. YOU will have to figure out how to get a taxi or bus.

*I* have all day and I can sit down over there and read a magazine til me and my car decide to go somewhere else.

I do not share my car and give rides to nasty people. f you want me to move, you have to say "I'm sorry for talking nasty." And I'm counting now. I quit at 5 times. Your choice. "

Eventually he just did it. Those were early days. He would constantly "test" me and once he figured out I really maintain my boundaries? I don't fold like my mother who is afraid of "making a scene in public?" He doesn't even try shenanigans with me any more.

Your boundaries are for YOU to obey. Not for your husband to obey.

My boundary above was

"I don't let my dad talk nasty to me and give free caregiver work in return. I expect me to ask him to apologize. If he doesn't apologize after 5 chances, I'm leaving him where he is and going home."

There is a consequence for ME to do. Not him. And I am not taken for granted or not appreciated for the work I do because... i don't have to do the work. I'm not a paid caregiver. I do this stuff FREE. So no... I don't have to do it if I don't want to be doing it. That time and one time where I really did get in my car and start to drive off leaving him to deal with his transpiration problems on his own taught him I don't mess around.

I start to feel like he is more aware and controlled than he lets on and that he just doesnt care to improve anymore.

So this is the level he can reach. You list at this level:

  • things are better than they have been.
  • They are better than you ever thought they would be.
  • He's grown in ways that you were never expecting.
  • His breaks are less frequent, his smaller breaks are more controlled.
  • You found rescues and are in the process of building a Crisis Prevention Plan
  • You are going with him for his next therapy appointment so you can address these things together.

You either can live with the level he can reach, or you cannot. You keep doing the caregiver work, or you just put the load down.

My dad? He will NEVER get to where he apologizes and means it. Behind my back he tells my mom I'm a bitch. I laugh at her and say "Well, him ranting I'm a bitch to you behind my back? That's is YOUR problem. You don't have to sit there listening to crap.

Me? I have no more problems. To my face he behaves. Which is all I care about until his illness gets to the next stage."

Make your OWN self care plan. Include when it's time to check out as the free caregiver person and call in professional caregiver people.

I love my dad and I'm sorry he struggles with his mental illnesses. But I love me more than I love my dad. I have to love me 51% more than the 49% love I give him. Because that stops me from spreading myself too thin or burning out. I only agree to help him on days I am willing to help him.

If I am too tired, I say NO. I also don't allow nasty talk. My consent to help can change. I'm not spending the day with a nasty talking man who still can mange to NOT talk nasty.

It's ok if he doesn't like you having boundaries. You did not make them for him to obey. You made them for YOU to obey. Do you need help articulating them so there are choices that YOU can do?

Galagirl
 
Last edited:
Top