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pandama0115
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« on: March 17, 2019, 08:04:34 PM »

My husband was diagnosed with stage 5 kidney failure two and a half years ago, and ever since then he has suffered severe anxiety and depression. This has cause a great deal of conflict for our marriage, as he has convinced himself that I am going to leave him because of his condition. No matter how many times I tell him that we are in this together and no matter how many times I show him that Iím not going anywhere he still insists to push me away. He has continued to start the most unnecessary arguments and he constantly says he pushes me away because he knows Iím going to leave him anyways. I donít know what to do. I donít want to leave him because I love him and Iíve asked him numerous of times to see a counselor but he still hasnít made the attempt too and I donít want to stay because itís constant disrespect to me and I donít deserve to be continually disrespected and mistreated. At the moment I asked him to leave the house to give us space to both think. I just donít know if there is anymore fight in me. I canít fight for someone if they canít help themselves.
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UkrainianTracksuit
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2019, 06:08:17 AM »

Iím sorry you are going through this problem.

If I recall from your other thread, you guys are fairly young and that means your husband started dialysis in his early to mid-20s.

To be fair to him, thatís really tough on the young male psyche. This is the age when youíre supposed to be the most strong and full of life. Dealing with dialysis takes a toll on his mind.

It sounds as though he is struggling with his own internal demons and problems. There are obviously thoughts within his mind that he isnít willing to discuss and this results in a fragile marriage.

There is help out there for anxiety and depression. Has he been receiving any sort of help? Pushing someone away is a defensive mechanism. Such as, if I push them away, they wonít leave me because I did the pushing.

Would he be interested in talking with someone by himself about his own concerns first? Just him and someone else? That would take off the pressure of saving the marriage and just having to be prepared to talk things over with you. No marriage talk, just about him.

Then, if he is more comfortable, he can transition into couples therapy. He may be more open to accepting it if he got to learn it on his own. Maybe he would see on his own the problems with his moods in the marriage?

If arguments always seem to happen, perhaps change the medium in how you express your feelings about stuff. Write him a letter, maybe? Reiterate that you are committed to the marriage no matter what and you donít even consider dialysis in your love for him. That sort of stuff. Also explain to him how his awful words and arguing make you feel. At least this way, he canít reply right away and argue.

Remind him that despite dialysis, you are still there. You have a child together. Say all the things you can build or do together despite dialysis in the picture.

All of this said, if he doesnít want to budge or understand at all, there is nothing that you can do. You are right that you do not deserve to be disrespected or mistreated. You can love someone from afar. By that, you still love them but the kind of love has changed and the way the love exists has changed too.

I constantly suffered from thoughts that my husband would leave me because of dialysis. Sometimes, those thoughts pop up still but instead of arguing with him, I retreat into myself. Then I think logically, he hasnít done anything to give me that idea, and go on.

Once your husband stops viewing himself as broken, it really helps in understanding that we are deserving of love and happiness like everyone else. Feeling broken is kinda common with depression and anxiety. Those bad thoughts donít give us freedom to be disrespectful to our loved ones though!
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MooseMom
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2019, 08:21:02 AM »

This is a common problem.

We all have a "story" that is unique to each of us, so I will share a bit of mine with you in the hope that it will give you some perspective.

I spent 8 years just waiting for my kidneys to fail.  It was the most horrible, soul destroying time in my entire life.  I sought out every sort of help out there.  Biofeedback, counselling, psychiatry, exercise...you name it, I tried it.  My husband accompanied me to the psychiatrist, and the two of them ended up in an argument...not helpful.  She kept suggesting medication but then would tell me that it would cause me to gain weight.  Maybe she felt self conscious about HER weight because I couldn't understand why she would keep banging on about that particular side effect.

Anyway, my point is that for a lot of people, depression and anxiety are perfectly normal reactions.

The problem comes when all of that is thrown in your face, and it is no wonder that you feel disrespected.  He is angry.  He doesn't know what to do with that anger, but you are right there and make a convenient target.

Do you deserve it?  No, of course not, but that isn't the point.

The first thing you must do is remember that none of this is about you.  It may all be directed at you, but it is not ABOUT you.  Don't take it personally.  I do recognize, though, that it is easier said than done.

I was very upfront with my husband and told him when I was having a particularly tough day.  He'd come in from work and tell me about some niggling problem, and I'd be furious because I'd be thinking, "Well, that's hardly worse than waiting for your kidneys to fail!!!"  I wouldn't say that to him, but he could read my face.  There were many days when the first thing I'd say to him in the morning was, "I am struggling today.  If I say or do anything that hurts you, please know that it's only because I'm scared today."  It wouldn't be an excuse, but sometimes just an explanation (and a warning) was enough.  He appreciated that.

I feel really bad for your husband.  Just reading your post made me cry because I remember so vividly the abject terror in which I lived for so many years.  I still have nightmares about it.  I really hope that he can find some way to cope each day; it can be such a battle.

There is not a lot that you can do for him other than to just stay put.  But there are some things you can do for yourself.  I don't know either of you, but my first thought is to build yourself an emotional wall of armour.  Let him rant and rave.  Just stay put.  If he says or does something particularly harmful, just quietly say, "I don't deserve that, but I understand that you are frightened."  And stay put.  Maybe YOU could talk to a professional.  All too often, family members don't get the support THEY need.  There are millions of people out there who has a family member going through a medical catastrophe and don't know how to cope with it all.

If what you want is to convince your husband that you're not going anywhere, he's going to want proof.  Perhaps this is his way of testing you.  I don't know.  If you want him to be confident that you're not going anywhere, then just stay put.

Good luck to you both.
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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2019, 08:16:48 PM »

Maybe he needs a "Plan B" to tuck away and to know that he'd do okay on his own if you were no longer around. For instance, what would he do if you were to suddenly die? Maybe his fear isn't so much that you would leave him but that he'd be ALONE. Does he have resources (financial, mental, physical, spiritual) that he could rely on? Does he know where or how to obtain those resources? Does he have a support network other than you, his wife? It may be an unpleasant conversation to have but probably one worth having.
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Husband has ESRD with Type I Diabetes -Insulin Dependent.
I was his carepartner for home hemodialysis using Nxstage December 2013-July 2016.
He went back to doing in-center July 2016.
cassandra
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When all else fails run in circles, shout loudly

« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2019, 11:35:05 AM »

Is Home Hemo/PD an option? Managed to make me more independent, less depressed etc. Hubby happier too.


Good luck, and strength,Cas












Sp mod Cas
« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 03:45:06 PM by cassandra » Logged

I started out with nothing and I still have most of it left

1983 high proteinloss in urine, chemo, stroke,coma, dialysis
1984 double nephrectomy
1985 transplant from dad
1998 lost dads kidney, start PD
2003 peritineum burst, back to hemo
2012 start Nxstage home hemo
       still on waitinglist, still ok I think
pandama0115
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« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2019, 12:34:52 PM »

Thank you all for the support. I had my first appointment yesterday with a therapist and my husband has his on Thursday.
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Naynay99
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« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2019, 12:44:09 PM »

Hey. Glad u guys are seeking out some outside help. Having somebody neutral to talk to can help a lot. 

I donít really have any advice, I just wanted to let you know that I have been there on the other side, being the one who is depressed.  And one of the hardest things is that you cannot always rationalize with a depressed person because depression and anxiety can make our minds think in irrational ways, yet our thoughts and feelings seem totally real and logical and valid to us at the time. 
Itís infuriating to deal with within my own brain so I would imagine dealing with it from the outside would be equally frustrating.   
I hope both of you get some relief soon.  Hang in there. 
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MooseMom
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« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2019, 12:51:17 PM »

Thank you all for the support. I had my first appointment yesterday with a therapist and my husband has his on Thursday.

Good for you both!

I know your sessions will be very personal, but if at any time you wish to share any insights you gain, we'd only be too happy to read what you have to say.  Many people who post here are in your shoes, so you could teach us all a lot.  Thank you.

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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
Charlie B53
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2019, 06:17:28 PM »



The Self-Fulfilling Prophesy is a real Bitch. 

Because He Believes it, He can cause it to become True.

Even if he doesn't want it.   His subconscious will undermine him.

By His Words and Actions he will cause it to become True.

He simply needs to learn that it doesn't have to be that way.  And that may not be an easy task.

Someone has to lead him into realizing that HE is causing strife.

So His kidneys failed.  HE still is a person with value, worth, and Love.

And that is all that matters.
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fightingPKD
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« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2019, 11:54:47 AM »

Although I have not pushed my wife away, I can otherwise identify with this guy.

Not sure how this is all going to sound, but we'll see. I'm new here.  Actually, I'll save the whole story for another day. Not sure I'm entirely ready to tell it, and it'll probably be a massive one.

On topic:  So, the feeling of depression/anxiety is impossible to avoid in my view.  When you realize the hindrances you put your family through; when you recognize yourself as strong, alpha male...and all of a sudden its gone... it sometimes gets overwhelming.  I'm at stage 4 failure now (19%).  My wife is an amazingly supportive person for me, and 95% of the time I am appreciative of it!

However,  there are periods of time - rare and typically short - where nothing and no one can make me feel better.  I snap back out of it fairly quickly and these episodes are short-lived, but it's allowed me to better understand what true despair can feel like.  Polycystic Kidney Disease has literally changed my life for the worse, and on more than just the physical level. It'd crippled many of the things/activities I have associated with my life/interests.  It's been brutal.
There are aspects of my old life I still hold onto - my previous ice hockey days for example.  For context I am 46, but I am in great shape for anyone on my age, using almost any health parameter.   You would never guess how screwed up my insides are, looking at me from the outside.
I've been fighting the slow degradation of my remaining kidney's function since I lost the first one at 31 and nearly died in the process.  Fighting through doing all of the things listed in the pre-dialysis suggestions post, ironically enough. I have an outstanding nephrologist who is a lead researcher in my disease. I'm blessed in many aspects (besides getting a disease I had no practical reason to get ---> spontaneous mutation).

I hope the therapist can help your husband reach past his anger, and start accepting the fact you are trying to help him.  I've personally recognized how valuable my wife is to me. I believe he will figure it out with you as well.
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MooseMom
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« Reply #10 on: May 26, 2019, 03:23:37 PM »

FightingPKD, all of that sounds absolutely normal.

On those days when nothing and no one can make you feel better, there's not a lot you can do other than try to get through the day and recognize that tomorrow will be a new one.

When you recognize yourself as the strong, alpha female...the one in the family that keeps the world afloat and who somehow has to do everyone's thinking for them...being distracted by anxiety and just plain FEAR is overwhelming.  It's like there's just no room in your head for anything more.

And yes, when you are faced with a disease that has no rhyme or reason to it, a malady that has just come to you out of nowhere, it's hard to get your head around it.
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"Eggs are so inadequate, don't you think?  I mean, they ought to be able to become anything, but instead you always get a chicken.  Or a duck.  Or whatever they're programmed to be.  You never get anything interesting, like regret, or the middle of last week."
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« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2019, 08:35:08 PM »

fightingPKD:  :thumbup; Keep on keeping on! My husband is the one on dialysis -he goes 3x a week and whether he feels up to it or not, also works a fulltime job. Well lately I've been sick and in a lot of pain and very very depressed and yet, whether he feels up to it or not, my husband has been taking care of me and the one holding it together for us. I worry so much about him and our future but darned if he doesn't spring into action and is there when I need him. I should have never doubted that he could. So just when you think you may be a burden or "hindrance" on your family, think it over and of all the things you ARE capable of providing them. You'd probably surprise yourself. My husband truly amazes me. All of you that are on dialysis or have been thru a transplant amaze me.
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Husband has ESRD with Type I Diabetes -Insulin Dependent.
I was his carepartner for home hemodialysis using Nxstage December 2013-July 2016.
He went back to doing in-center July 2016.
fightingPKD
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« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2019, 09:39:22 PM »

fightingPKD:  :thumbup; Keep on keeping on! My husband is the one on dialysis -he goes 3x a week and whether he feels up to it or not, also works a fulltime job. Well lately I've been sick and in a lot of pain and very very depressed and yet, whether he feels up to it or not, my husband has been taking care of me and the one holding it together for us. I worry so much about him and our future but darned if he doesn't spring into action and is there when I need him. I should have never doubted that he could. So just when you think you may be a burden or "hindrance" on your family, think it over and of all the things you ARE capable of providing them. You'd probably surprise yourself. My husband truly amazes me. All of you that are on dialysis or have been thru a transplant amaze me.

That full time working and still going to (I guess a hospital?) for hemo?  That's insane! Major credit to him, not sure how he sleeps enough.  As it is, I sleep 8 hours/day average and that's challenging to do and work 40 hours as well (traffic is brutal where I live).  Teeworking two days a week is a godsend, I'm not sure, even now, how much would be left of me if I had to spend 10 hours or more a day at or traveling to work. Doing three straight days was wearing me down!

My wife and I have already decided home hemo would be our choice if an option when the time comes. Worst case scenario we'd figure something out with me working less, but that's all just conjecture.  I've been doing over 10 years of worst case scenario mindset knowing that this day would eventually come. I go and see the transplant group at the end of July for an initial check-in/information gathering day.

but yeah, my wife is awesome. She lifts with me, we take walks almost every day in the evening, and we still go out drinking together on the weekend. I can manage 3-4 cheat meals a week because the rest of my diet is 100% low salt/on point.
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