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Lodger or Lover?

jacintheboxjjacinthebox Posts: 3
edited 11/04/2014 - 3:57 AM in Matters of the Heart
Hi, im new to this forum. Im 33 and have had a discectomy with decompression in September this year (L5/S1). Im recovering well but I also have coccydenia which causes a lot of pain in my hips, groin and tummy. I had to withdraw from university as i cannot sit and concentrate on essays due to pain and I am unfit for work. I am due to see my surgeon on Friday and discuss my next operation choices.

Yesterday I received a letter to say my benefits will be ending and after many phone calls to look into other help it seems we are unable to claim anything else.

My boyfriend has said since I can no longer pay towards any bills I will have to earn my keep by doing more housework (not easy when your back is bad). He said if I don't I know where the door is! I was really shocked by this and when discussing why he was so mad it turns out he questions the pain im in as I can go and do a 6 mile walk without trouble. He forgets that everyday I feel pain and have learned to live with it over the year and can disguise it well. He also knows how desperate I am wanting to get back to studying and that I have already put in for another course for when I am well enough. Half of me wants to stick around as im sure we can get over this but the other half says why should I put up with feeling like a lodger and feel the pressure of 'earning' my keep when I could do further damage to my back.

Any advice on this is much appreciated in this tough time and my head is spinning.


  • Or take classees? Or go to work? While living with pain is not a lot of fun, it also doesn't give us a pass on other responsibilities in our lives as well. Coccydenia pain can be managed, and there are things you can do to ease the pain while sitting or standing as well.
    You have said that you are recovering well from the discectomy and are able to walk for quite a distance, so that's good news. As far as housework or getting employment goes, you can do those things, it is a question of finding a position that you can move around in, or when studying, making the time and effort to ensure that you can sit comfortably, if that means bringing a cushion with you or talking to your professors about having to stand in the back of classroom if needed for a time......schools make accomodations for students with disabilities or medical conditions all of the time so it isn't something that can't be arranged.
  • I've been married for over 18 years. I used to be a very successful corporate business woman. Things change! That's why they have the whole "for better & worse, sickness & health" stuff in vows. I don't know if you're just angry & that's effecting the way you present your 'partner' (???) If anyone ever gave me an ultimatum & told me where the door is...I'd use it!!! Chronic pain takes a lot from us. Sometimes it's hard to remember the smart, strong, driven women we are. You guys need to have a long conversation. If that's how he truly feels about relationships I'd be seriously questioning if this is a person I want to share my life with. In life we never know what's around the corner. At your age I was just studying & partying. I never had to seriously think about my relationships. Best of luck. Please don't sacrifice who you are, your self respect, for anyone or anything.
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • Sandi must of posted at the same moment as me! Hahaha! You've got a couple of very different responses to work with. I think you should push for your education to. Wow! I had a very different gut reaction to your post!
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • and thank you for your comments. I do do some housework hence the 'more housework' stated. Sometimes I find it too painful to stand to do things like washing up the dishes so I leave it until I can do it which looks bad since im in the house all day but it gets done. We are trying to talk it out but he thinks I'm playing on my pain as he has seen me at my worst. Trouble is I can feel where my limits are when moving around even out walking etc so I know when to back off and take a break etc so I don't go to that 'worst' point. I have this coccydenia condition that feels like I'm being stabbed with glass when I over do it and it cripples me to where my whole back feels like it is going to collapse. I am just hoping to be told there is a fix for this so I can get my life back and start a new course and one where i can actually do the job at the end of it. I realise I will be going back to work at some point and I have already informed my course tutor of my condition so they can help me with studying too.

    You are right I am angry and very frustrated that everywhere I go I feel to have to justify myself when no one feels what I do.

    Only people with back pain understand other people with back pain im finding that out the hard way : /
  • Yeh! I've found the problem with back pain is everyone has it!!! I can't count the number of times I've been advised on the best shoes to wear or the latest herbal remedy. A neighbor was only just telling me how all my problems will be solved if I start doing the 5am power workout with her!! I can't even hobble as far as the community gym. Not all back pain is the same. People mean well & think they understand but unless you suffer with unrelenting chronic pain you can't get it. It's so much more than just the physical pain.
    Fear of increased pain can be very isolating & crippling in its own way but it sounds like you know your limits, when to push a little harder & when to rest. My husband made one of those well-meaning, infuriating comments the other day. He said, "Sometimes I have to remind myself that I have a crippled wife & not a lazy wife."!!!!!!! He's still alive ;-)
    Osteoarthritis & DDD.
  • I finished my first Degree at college while sitting on my son's "Bob the Builder" pillow. It was quite the conversation starter! My Professor was aware of my back injury and was extremely cool about letting me change positions, standing up, zoning out due to pain med's, the whole nine yards.

    Although it really sucks to deal with back pain, you must do your best to move on with life and not let the pain win out. I'd suggest you try continuing with school; let your professor know about your situation. On the relationship deal only you can decide if your boyfriend is worth keeping or not. My wife has been wonderful about my whole back issue. IF she would have given me a bunch of grief when all this started and then gave me an ultimatum, I would probably walk. Simply because if she wasn't willing to understand when the accident occurred, she would never understand as time went on. Being in a relationship where you are made to feel inferior is not good for you mentally.

    Perhaps trying to do more around the apartment/house but stopping when the pain goes from nuisance to really uncomfortable may show him you are willing to help, but to a point.

    I hope things work out for you in the long run!

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • jacintheboxjjacinthebox Posts: 3
    edited 11/05/2014 - 10:40 PM
    I have to remind myself i'm with a crippled wife not a lazy wife'' Englishgirl i have laughed and cried at this, very true!

    It has been a tough week so far but it seems we are making some headway and neither of us are ready to give in. We are not going to let this ill health beat us.

    I have to admit it seems i have been a bit on the selfish side. I maybe the one who is going through the pain but we are the couple who are coping with the changes. You see we met through our love of mountain biking and the course i was on was a degree in Outdoor Leadership. When my back problems began i discussed my options with the course and they were very supportive and accomodated where they could. In the end they decided i could not continue on such a practical course without taking part in the kayaking, canoeing, climbing etc that it involves. Not only have i lost a course that i loved i have also been told cycling could make my coccydenia worse so at the moment (if ever) i cannot do this either. This has been a massive blow for us both.

    We have now turned a corner, drawn a line on things. He admitted that he should not have given me an ultimatum and that he said it during anger. He said he would just like to see a bit more effort on my part. I have agreed to this and he agreed to try and be more understanding.

    I have to say what a relief it is to have people to relate to. Thank you all and we shall see how it geos : )
  • http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/lower-back-pain/coccydynia-tailbone-pain

    Have you considered seeing a pain management doctor for other treatment ideas? I am not , in any way excusing what your boyfriend said to you....if my husband ever said that to me, HE would be out the door......but as I said in my first post, while we may have chronic pain, it doesn't absolve us of trying .......and learning to cope and work around our pain levels, and do our best.......and that's what I took from your post, was that he is frustrated by what he percieves as you not doing your best.. Yes, coccyxdenia is painful but there are treatment options, including a spinal cord stimulator that might be very helpful in managing the pain involved.....so , your job is to explore those options, learn about them and discuss them with your doctors.
    In the meantime, I found that using a stool with a cushion on it, made being able to sit a bit while doing the dishes easier, and I had to learn to pace myself in doing things around the house.....even when I was taking a break on the couch, I could fold the laundry when someone brought it up for me......It is about learning how to do things in a different manner that allows us to still "contribute" without causing further harm.
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