This is a topic that comes up frequently here but I wanted to check to seek support here and find out what your experiences are from spouses trying to cope with your pain.
My wife of nine years is close to leaving me, taking our two children with her, after putting up with my pain from two two-level lumbar fusion surgeries. I'm so depressed, feel helpless, want to save the marriage but not sure it's possible at this point.
She complains that I'm not dying, so I should basically get over it. I've been on disability leave from work but hope to return soon, even if I'm still in pain, just to be able to say I tried.
I've been to physical therapy more times than I can remember, have tried yoga (which increased the pain), am taking minimal doses of painkillers as needed and antidepressants. Sometimes the pain is so intense I just retreat to the bed in the home office and lie there in in pain. Meanwhile she does most of the cooking, housecleaning and taking care of our young children. It's a heavy burden on her, and I sympathize with her. This is not the life she signed up for when we got married.
My depression and general withdrawal have greatly hurt our marriage. But I still try. I go out with her and the kids at least twice a week to the park or to amusement parks or restaurants. I mow the lawn, do a bit of gardening, tidy up the house when my pain is tolerable, and pick up our children from school when I can.
I feel so alone in this. Her family solidly supports her and is actively involved in getting her out of the marriage. I've told her I want to change and do everything she wants, like in the good ol' days, but it will take time because my pain is unrelenting.
I can't get her to understand what I'm going through. For her it's just a minor problem with which I have to come to terms. She wants a husband who can cook, clean house, work and bring home the bacon, serve her breakfast in bed, plan camping trips with the kids and so on.
I want to do all those things too, but my God, even when I was in minimal pain and still working I couldn't find the time to do all that. My work was so intense and time- consuming.
Please help :-(