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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Full moon or something like it....



Well, I was hoping that if I took some time off from dwelling on things that I could get myself out of "angry" for a while....it didn't work. I think, as some of you commented, I need to find myself a therapist somehow. I need to find a healthy way to channel my anger and accept my husband's illness. I'll have to find someone in the city, I was thinking on my way to work that maybe I'd call the employee assistance line and see if they have a suggestion. I think they pay for a few counseling sessions, too, so that would save me the copay....I'll let you know what happens with that...

Late last week, Social Security sent DH two forms to fill out (and one for me to fill out) concerning his prior work experience and his current abilities. They came with explicit instructions to make sure they got back within 10 days, or the claim "may be denied". So every day, I remind DH to fill out the forms (mine has already been mailed) and every day he is "busy" sitting on the couch or (yes again) lying in bed watching TV....he'll do it tomorrow. So today, I set the alarm early so that DH could fill out the forms and I could mail them before work. He got up and started filling out the forms. And he got so angry. Not necessarily with me, but at the forms and the questions they were asking. He was angry that he didn't know the exact dates that he worked. He was angry that he had to fill them out at all. And then this: "It's asking me if I take care of children, I'm going to put yes."

Me: How do you figure?

DH: Well, DD. You know, I make sure she goes to bed and I make sure she takes her pills....

Me: (to myself) : DD takes her own pills without anyone reminding her. She feeds herself when I'm not home, because you refuse to prepare food beyond cereal. She puts on her own pajamas, and goes to bed with one or two prompts. I (Carol) am the one who makes sure she gets up in the morning. To me, that does not qualify as taking care of "children".

Me: (out loud) : Well, I think they were thinking like more like younger kids, like changing diapers, getting them dressed, giving them a bath....stuff like that...

DH: Well, I take care of her!!!

Me: Well I think if you lead them to believe that you help her a lot, Social Security is going to suggest that you are not disabled, you can do day care. (I guess I probably shouldn't have said anything like that....kind of insinuated that he doesn't do anything....)

DH: FINE! (slams door)

Me: Maybe you should take a Lorazepam?

DH: (no answer) (did not take the pill)

and did not complete the form.

Then this:

DD comes home from school, I'm still there, at home, because I had to get DH's prescription and some dog food, since I stay in the city on Wednesday/Thursday nights.

DD: Mom, my teacher wants me to do this 9 hour project. Look what I found, "Dog grooming, self serve dog wash."

Me: What kind of project? Does she want you to work for 9 hours? Or does she want you to interview someone, or what?

DD: It's a 9 hour project she wants us to do.

Me: Well, it sounds like you might need more information. Do you have instructions?

DD: Forget it.

Me: Ok, then. Why don't you have a glass of milk?

DD: Where's the cereal?

Me: (to myself) You and your friend ate it all over the weekend, a WHOLE WEEK'S WORTH OF CEREAL. And now we don't have any and I don't have any money. So too bad for you. Make a sandwich.

Me: (out loud) There isn't any.

DH: (this is a for real quote, even though it's so pathetically funny it sounds like I made it up...) : Can I have some money to go buy her cereal?

Me: I have no money. You'll both have to make do.

DD: This is so stupid. (slams door to her room)

Me: (to DH and to DD's PCA (helper)) : There's plenty of food here. There's two loaves of bread, some oatmeal packets, fruit cocktail....and ramen.

DD: (comes out of her room) I WASN'T CALLING YOU STUPID!!!!! I WASN'T!!!! ALL I SAID WAS THIS WAS STUPID!!!!!!!!

Me: I never said anything about you calling anyone stupid. You need to have a glass of milk and try to calm down.

DD: I AM TRYING!!!! I AM SO ANGRY!!!!! I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO!!!!!

DH: DD. Go to your room.\

DD: NO. I WON'T!!!

Me: Can you take some deep breaths?

DD: NO. I CAAAAAANNNNN'TTTTTT!!!! (screaming)

Me: C'mon, let's do it together, as deep a breath as you can--In......and Out......look at me....In......and Out.......do you remember that this is a good way to calm down?

DD: yes

Me: Now why don't you go into your room and take your glass of milk, too. Drink your milk, and breathe deep like we just did. And we'll check on you in 10 minutes.

In 10 minutes she was on her way back to normal, so I went to work. Maybe the anger is contagious or something.....? I don't know! When I left the house, though, all I wanted to do was move out. That was all I could think about.

6 comments:

Karen said...

Theres a song at the moment that sums up some of what you are going through.

"I got a man with two left feet
And when he dances down to the beat
I really think that he should know
That his rhythms go go go

I got a man with two left feet
And when he dances down to the beat
I really think that he should know
That his rhythms go go go

CHORUS
Does he wash up? Never wash up
Does he clean up? No, he never cleans up
Does he brush up? Never brushed up
He does nothing the boy does nothing"

I hope thsi brought at least a small smile to you. Thinking of you.

Miz Kizzle said...

Carol, fill all the forms out yourself. You need to submit them by a certain date or you'll be S.O.L. (that's shit out of luck, in case you didn't know!)
It's obvious that your DH can't or won't do it. I think he's ashamed of being "officially" labelled incapable of working. His claim that he takes care of your DD was an attempt to seem as if he is contributing something to your household. But you're right, the question refers to young children, not teens like your DD.
Hospitals sometimes have free support groups for families of mentally ill people. If there's a hospital near you, you could try calling their community relations department. Therapy can be expensive. You could probably get more out of a peer support group.
You might even consider Al-anon. I know your husband's primary problem isn't drinking but Al-anon is helpful for anyone who needs to detach from a loved one's problems. It's free and there may be meetings in your area.

Elizabeth B. Alexander said...

My first thought was also to fill out the forms yourself. Have him look over it and sign it, etc.

I understand how even small tasks can present serious frustration. Anger and frustration are two of my most uncontrollable emotions but what I don't understand is why he doesn't understand what a high priority the SS forms carry to the entire household's quality of life. There would be more money for everything, including cereal and cigarettes.

It seems the labelling is really bothering him, which maybe explains his inability to handle these problems/daily life because it makes him face his disease and inabilities. Maybe a peer support group y'all could attend together. Hell, start one.

perphila said...

Fill out the forms yourself. I know it seems like you are enabling him but getting the money trumps that. DH can do his part by reviewing it and signing it.

You did great at keeping your cool. Goodness knows how hard that is. A support group might be a good and free place to start if getting a counselor is too difficult or expensive to do.

I have my fingers crossed for you!

Angelina said...

Of course you're angry and frustrated! You are one adult taking care of your kid, and your other two kids: your husband and your mother. I feel like that often. My mom is bi-polar, my husband and son have ADD.

I could use some therapy myself but can't afford it. Get the therapy for yourself if you can swing it. You have to take care of yourself and it's hard to do when you are taking care of so many things. You're supporting everyone and no one is supporting you. You need some support!

Accidental Mommy said...

I feel like running away all the time too. I dream of leaving and having my old life back but at the same time I don't know if I could even go back to that. I'd still worry about all the crap going down here with the kids and Hubbins.

It's hard taking care of an adult who acts like a child and is resentful. I have huge anger issues. My whole life I've kept any anger I had inside and now that I am older, I'm letting it out when I feel it. Hubbins thinks I need to see a therapist.

I won't. The last therapist, I saw was the kids therapist. I trusted her and she tried to use my childhood abuse and my insecurities against me when I was letting her go. Be careful who you go see.

I guess the most important thing is to know that it is ok to be angry. Especially when DH and DD start acting like you are the one with the issues and the one who is mean or whatever they choose. Try not to feel guilty for feeling this way after the fact. You are carrying a large load and you are only one person. Right?

I think you and I are alike in the fact that we believe that people have the power to change their circumstances. I have gone over and over and over it in my head about how I could change my circumstances and leaving is the only answer but still doesn't seem like an option or truly an answer. I'm starting to think that maybe the circumstances can't be changed but the attitude towards it can be adjusted. I still care too much to change my attitude. But there might be something to it, maybe...