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Coming Out - Telling The Families About The Problems!

Discussion in 'Supporter Discussion' started by Jaynea, Sep 22, 2006.

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  1. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Does anyone have trouble telling your families about your spouses problems?
    I have only 1 brother and his family...Our parents are dead. My brother is very hearty he went through Viet Nam apparently with no after effects. He absolutley can not relate to my husband's problems...so I just cover it up. We all live far apart so they don't see anything.But I could sure use some of their support.

    My husband was hurt on 9/11 and was diagnosed with PTSD a few months later. It's been a roller coaster of anxiety, insomnia, panic and paranoia for five years. I've only lately begun to realize that our old life is over and that this thing will not pass . I lost the happy surfer, sailor, adventurer I loved and this new person is what I have. Sweet, scared and very dependent on me.

    But I haven't really told my family yet...Did any of you?
     
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  3. Andrea42

    Andrea42 Active Member

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    Hi Jaynea,
    I recentley told my parents about what is going on because i felt i couldnt no longer deal with it (its so hard) so they know....
    Then in front of my hubby (i asked his permission first) i talked to his mom and let her know what is going on with him...what he is going through... he wanted to tell her but could not so i helped him.
    From what i see everyone in our fam ignores it...nobody talkes about it, or nobody see's anything that goes on...Im pretty much the only one. He has opened up to some people (my uncle and his gf) in which i hope helps him but other than that i wish our families were more supportive...
     
  4. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Hi Andrea42- Thanks for your response. Yesterday I sent a group email to my family telling them what's been going on. (I think they thought he was just getting "weird") There was a flood of supportive emails from the women in my family. My nieces in their 30's were especially wonderful. My sister in law suggested that my new cat could be a comfort. ( ???? ) At least that was funny. I imagine talking to your spouses mother was especially hard for both of you.

    My husband feels betrayed if I mention it because he wants everyone to think he's fine. That complicates everything. But things got so hard for me I had to let them know. I feel so much better knowing I don't have to cover up anymore.
     
  5. jods

    jods Well-Known Member

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    Good on you Jaynea, bet you felt some of the weight lift off your shoulders as you got those replies!
    My family had no choice, I had to ring my mum so she could come & look after our boy so I could pick hubby up from the hospital. It didnt help with the fact that hubby's accident was on the news that night. I couldn't hide any of that from them. Lucky for me, they have been fantastic & been supportive all the way.
    Just remember that even though they think they know what is best for you,(& are doing it out of love & concern) you must set up clear boundries as to how much they can "help" you. We live with our partners 24/7, they don't. Sometimes their "help" can create extra pressure that you don't need.
     
  6. delta186

    delta186 New Member

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    PTSD is treatable and your husband can work thu it. I know
    If I can help look me up.
    Wish you the best Jaynea
     
  7. permban0008

    permban0008 Policy Enforcement Banned

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    Jaynea,

    At first I really didn't mention anything to either of our parents or our friends for that matter. Its hard to know who to trust in the beginning and I always felt like I would be betraying Anthony's trust. Eventually though, he told his own family and I told mine. Pretty much all of our friends now know, because when he was initially diagnosed those acquaintances that never really did give a damn disappeared. It will make it harder for him if at least your families don't know as he will have to put on the 'happy face' each time he see's them. Encourage him to tell them at the very least. It will help you for family support as well. Be mindful of Jods post regarding 'helpful' families, no doubt their heart is in the right place but it can add to the stress if they don't know the boundaries.

    One other thing I would say though is be careful about what you tell about his treatment. My husband is cagey with his family, particularly his Mum about what he is and isn't up to regarding managing his PTSD. Where Anthony's family is concerned I have learned that less is better. His Mum does try and get stuff out of me (because she is genuinely concerned) but I'm always careful that my loyalties lie with Anthony first.
     
  8. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Hi Thank you all. Kerri-Ann that part about friends dissapearing is so true. My husband lost some of his oldest friends who couldn't deal with the changes in him...It didn't help that the goverment was saying everything was fine...and he was telling everyone he had glass in his lungs.The physical changes...like breathing problems are a continual reminder of the event. I'm trying to take Anthony's advice about accepting. If the friends are gone-their gone...but I think my attitude change has really helped us as a couple lately...Thanks for the post
     
  9. manhattan

    manhattan New Member

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    It is interesting to hear different advice regarding sharing this intimate truth. My boyfriend is an OIF1 and OIF2 veteran and to the rest of the world he is fine. But to me and him- he is in constant pain and suffering. He is in the process of pushing me away hard and tells me that if his family knows the truth he will just push them away too. I am trying to reconcile the reality of ptsd with the reality of being so close to marrying the man i love. We are presently on either sides of the USA and I am realizing that being apart from the military community makes me feel like i am going insane rather than going through what ptsd is for a significant other. His family has no idea and thinks that I am simply taking time for my career now. I am alone with this constant pain and wonder if there is any relief? I know he is in his own pain, but I am not sure what to do without him, as he is the only one who shares this reality. I am sorry if this makes no sense. But, if it does to anyone, I would love some support and advice for how to keep getting on.
    Thanks-
    manhattan
     
  10. Jaynea

    Jaynea Member

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    Hi Manhattan...It sounds like you are going to dive into the deep end of the pool...The military and PTSD...wow. But what do you mean that he is pushing you away hard? Dealing with this can be so heartbreaking...read the other wives posts.... Are you in the military, too? Speaking for myself..I get by with lots of support and crying to friends who are very patient with me. But when people know it seems to effect how they relate to my husband...The whole PTSD thing is so burdensome sometimes. I have no good advise, I guess. What does your family say?
     
  11. Nam

    Nam I'm a VIP

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    manhattan and Delta, welcome to the forum.
     
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