Author Topic: off topic, but maybe someone can relate  (Read 4818 times)


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off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« on: March 06, 2009, 01:18:42 PM »
Recently my life has gone through many changes, a divorce a few years ago, the ending of an ugly relationship after that, and now alone with my kids. The kids have always been the one constant in my life, and i love being their mom..

My sadness lately has been from being 44 and feeling like this was not how i had visioned my life to be, maybe my child like heart had fooled me into believing i was going to have my ever after, live with a significant other, raise our children and grow old together.. But instead i find myself alone, and having to find strength while battling this illness at the same time.. Having no support is really difficult and i find i have to lean on my kids a bit.. i really hate to, but have no choice..

Maybe someone here knows what its like and has gone through similar, and has some ideas for beginning again..

Thanks christi

Dolly Dimples

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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2009, 04:53:03 PM »
 Dear Cristi, I am so saddened by your letter.  My own son is going through a marriage  break up, nearly a year on now.  It is so hard for all concerned. I can understand how bad it must be for you with health issues on top of it all, but I am sure your young family will love to help where they can..
 Kids are quite resiliant you know!   Are there any other family close by or a good friend, neighbour perhaps?  or even your Doctor would advise something   Don't be shy in asking for help or advice,  even bring social welfare in if things get too bad, they do help I know...

       Try to get out a little too , you can meet many a nice man in the supermarket..    My son absolutely hates being on his own, but at least he gets his kids all weekends, they go bike riding, etc'  goes to the park and meets people there too.     Life takes many paths my dear and there is a new one for you out there ...
                                   Good Luck,  Dolly.


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2009, 05:22:17 PM »
Hi Christi  :)

Ours is a generation that has been 'fed' the way things ought to be. There's TV - there are films and thdre are magazines and many depict fairytale lives with fairytale endings. Life's just not like that. Life is not fair and never has been.

I used to dream about all the things I'd do one day and suddenly woke up and realised I was never going to do them. I either couldn't afford it, was never going to - or had just got past it!

I've always told my kids to grab their opportunities when they can. Don't put things off. Live for the day. Time passes all too fast.

I'm still glad that I live in a 'first world country' with heathcare and that I don't have to worry where my next meal comes from and that my kids all made it to adulthood.

I can't do what I trained to do because it would hurt too much now. I retrained, work part time and love my job. Before I got a job - I went on courses and they helped me find a 'me' I didn't know about.

The illness sucks - but follow the dreams you can!

Take care - Scottie  :)   (our home page)   (find our chat times here!)  (way to chat + nickname and #Sjogrensworld)

Never do tomorrow what you can put off till the day after tomorrow!


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2009, 05:27:11 PM »
Chrisi, I am not a single parent, but I was a married, single parent most of the week while raising my kids. My husband traveled and was gone most of the week and sometimes gone 2 weeks and one time out of state for one month and my battery was bad in the car. I figured out that if I left the kids in the car with the motor running I could run into the grocery store and quick buy what I needed. The oldest was about eight so he would lock the car and unlock it when I got back. Thankfully we lived in a small community and crime was much less then.

The bottom line is I didn't feel good a lot of the time and worked part time plus we hobby farmed and I had to make sure the kids got the sheep and pigs fed,etc. I was responsible for everything while hubby was gone and I can relate to how you feel. I know what it is like to have to stay awake when I needed sleep. There had to be someone awake to keep track of the kids and keep things going. Really overwhelming at times, for sure.

It is really hard and I know it is very difficult for you. It is good to have a good cry when kids are sleeping. Have faith that these years will pass and you will have a hard time even remembering all of this when you are older. Doesn't sound possible but it is!!! If you can find a church where they are good at visiting and making an attempt to know you you will find support for you and the kids.  Also remember that when we are new in a group of any kind it is up to us to keep making overatures of friendship to get things rolling. Visit places that you know will have people in your age group, do whatever you can to make life more fulfilling. Visit the library, and other cheapies for entertainment. If possible join a frugal finances organization. This is the latest in social interaction nowadays. It is not necessary to be married to be happy.

One of my relatives went thought the divorce stuff, etc with kids and I learned a lot from her. She said that it took her a long time to learn who she was after marriage and what she wanted out of life. It was a difficult experience but she found that she grew emotionally and was able to do much more on her own than she ever imagined. Takes time to get the self esteem back and rebuild a life with a goal.

Please remember that you are not alone. So much of the world is alone and suffering and one must just hang in there. Hard to do, but I know that you will be able to do this. Just remember that your kids and health are top priorities. Life can be hard but with a positive attitude anything is possible. Also, you are still young. Heck,just think of how old you will be when the kids are gone and pay attention to what other people are doing in their middle age. Gone if the day of sitting in your rocking chair at age 55.

There is more than youth, young adults, middle age and old age. People live so much longer and have so many opportunities to do things they never imagined. You will endure. Have a good pity party when needed and keep on going. You will be surprised at how things are easier when you have a possitive outlook. I just had about a week of really down in the dumps but feel better today and life is looking more rosy. This wasn't what I had planned for my old age either, but I must perservere and set a good example for my kids and grandkids. Keep us updated ono things are going. Irish ;D

wednesday mc haggis

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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2009, 02:19:23 AM »

  well i cant realte, not to 8 kids, just 2.

At 20 i met my first husband , lovely guy i thought, was raised catholic so marriage was sacred far as i was raised.

  At 21 we got engaged, 22 we got married we were both nurses, at 24 i had our son .

I had PND  took me a year after he was born to feel normal, 6 months later, he came home from work, i suspected an affair at the time, and told me he no longer loved me and wanted a divorce, as i wa spart time i couldnt afford the mortgage and moved out.transpired to he left for another woman, me and my son had nothing but debt, they were flying round the world on holodiay.

Homeless , 2 year old boy, and him turning up when suited, wouldnt show up, showed up unexpected, finally disappeared .
   I married a lovely man , my best friends brother, wasnt  aman of means , but was good to me and my son.

we marrried i had my second son , again i got PND and he was just never home couldnt cope, i was raised you make  a marriage work  , he was out more than he was in. Finally he i can obly guess had some kind of mid life crisis and at 40 took the lifestyle of a younge rman and decided partying fuled by cocaine was his thing , well that was it, i wasnt having my sons exposed to that , and i took them and left.he sorted himself, too late for me, but he now sees his kids and lives a better life.

   Got  a govenment house and while it wasnt perfect, between bouts of extreme fatigue at times, i had my home looking great.

  My oldest son has been my rock, he fixes my electrical equipment, does homework with his younger brother, and always knew when i just needed a darn hug.

ALL single mums need to rely on the kids pulling some weight, yup there are so many time si have felt i let my kids down.i had made choices that i felt had ruined their life, my kids tell me im wrong.
  4 years on my own, dated a couple of men who the kids never got to meet, just didnt seem overly intrested in the whole package in conversation and i moved along.lso i was scared to put my kids through more pain.
   My oldest son is now 13 he is vice school captain, member of the eco comitte, he is in the maths club, space club, and his hobby is rocket science , he will sit exams a year early next year and is top 10% academically, this is a boy who i leaned on !!  if anything its matured him and brought out the best in him, i always had me and i love him.

my youngest is 9 and bright and well rounded, total mummies boy, that biy hangs off my leg always has.
  year and a half ago i went to a party in England through a singles chat site i joined, i was going to meet firneds, not to date.

  met this guy i had spoken to a few times, shy , hesitant, quiet geek.
  Skinny and awkward lad, but a gentle spirit, im quite out going and we had a good laugh and he said he had relaxed better in my company than most ppls.
  He asked me to seee him again alone for a date, and i said id think about it, he lived 400 miles way .

   Anyways we met, phoned, emailed, he cmae here, wanted to meet the kids, i talked to them, they wanted to meet him, we flew up and down as often as possible for a year, he then sold his home , gave up his job and moved 400 miles way to our modest little home, all the while my health has never been what it should be, just didnt know why.

  he moved in kids adore him, ever day my oldest give him a hug and tells him he loves him, were very happy , his mother isnt happy her shy boy tok of with a scottish harlot, but we work round her , and i ignore it best i can.

  he moved in a month and my health nose dived, and last 6 months ive been a vomiting, sleeplesss, aching mess, but he always copes , and if anything its brought us closer.

  On valentines day he asked me to marry him, and weve just placed a bid on a new home , and were getting keys to it on june 12th. Apart from my health the worlds a wonderful palce in me and my boys eyes right now, we never thought we would get out happy ending, but we are.
  You have faith, your kids are your rock and you all muck in together, sure your going to feel guilt, my single mum friends do too, but place the guilt where it truly lies, the parents who run out.
   Im not chrisitan, but seems to me jesus was raised by a step dad, wasnt your typical family , what is a typical family these days ??   they have you and sure you rely on them, there isnt a single parent family globally that doesnt work that way, you do your level best, and its all you can do, sure cash might not be so plentiful , and fancy clothes might not be affordable, but love cost nothing and you can lavish them in it.
  I know a lad i did my nurse training with he was youngest of 8, and they had little and they all mucked in, they were all nurses, teachers, doctor and a lawyer in that family, they got fed most days from a big bowel of home made soup, but the stories he can tell me about growing up as an only child make me jealous.

  Dont give up hope and belieif in love   , it cn and will happen, and worry not your kids have to do some chores, never seen that hurt, i see some truly spoiled kids and their behavior is unreal, i could take my boys anywhere and theyd do me proud , your life will change , just have faith

T x


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2009, 03:49:48 AM »
Christi - it is hard and sometimes you need to acknowledge that and not feel bad.  My husband left me when our 5th was a baby and eldest just 11.  Whenyou know the relationship was not good anyway, you really need to focus on all that you gain by not living under that emotional stress (and for me, inability to make his life good)  There were times when I just longed for a break, to be away from constant demands on me and for someone else to take charge for a bit, but no way would I trade that in for feeling inadequate, unloveable and bullied.

 When my yougest was 4 I did my Post-grad teaching qualification and that year and the 1styear teaching were 100% work.  We've found a way of making it possible though - we'd all sit down after tea and do our homweork round the table and it just became a new normal.  Through work I found my self esteem again and although it is hard to juggle it all, even now with just 3 teens at home, even when I struggle with my health I know I'm in a better place than all those years back.  Ask yourself how real the fairytale was?  There will be new episodes and chapters for you - new times and changing relationships (not to mention all those grandchildren to look forward to one day!) - and it doesn't all have to rely on a man!  Keep sharing on here and remind yourself how well you are doing XXX Ailsa
Female, 54
Diagnosed with Sjogrens March 09; Rheumatoid Arthritis February 2010
Meds: abatacept, Methotrexate injections , Folic Acid, Amitriptyline, Ozepramole, Tramacet, Glandosane & Viscotears.


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2009, 04:25:34 AM »

I'm sorry for what you're experiencing and wanted to tell you, it's really not off topic.  How we all have to cope with this illness and the lives we have beyond it is a very pertinent part of this group, in my opinion.

I'm the Mom of 2.  I had just gone back to work "for real", meaning a job in my field, not a part time job at the mall to tide us over for a few months.  My boys were 3 & 6 and we'd bought our first house about a year earlier.  I had such plans for this house - it's over 100 years old with a nice yard in a nice neighborhood.  I felt like I was finally on my way to living the life I'd dreamed of.

Then in 1992, while preparing for a photo shoot of company product (they made wire and plastic shelving that's used in just about every hospital, restaurant and manufacturing plant in the country), I picked up a 50lb bag of onions for some supermarket shelves - it was hot, I was pissed that I was out in my good suit picking up a car load of stuff that someone else should have been doing - and I just swung the stupic onions in the pack of my car and BAM, something bad happened in my low back.  I went went back to work the next day, told my boss what happened and finished the shoot.  I was hurting but figured it  would go away.  It didn't.  Over the course of the next 17 years, I've had 11 surgeries related to my back and the morphine pump I have fore pain, as well as a bad car accident, and hysterectomy.  During t his time, I also developed Sjogren's, fibromyalgia, and a host of other goodies that make life fun.

Somewhere during the first 2 week hospital stay, my husband checked out, not physically, but mentally.  Though he was here, I raised the kids, payed the bills, made sure the roof didn't fall off the house, made the family go to counseling when my 8 year old son decided he wanted to go to heaven where there were no problems and on and catch my drift.

My kids are almost grown, 20 and 23, and one day about 4 years ago, I told my husband, who'd started to dabble in antidepressants (take one one day, skip the next kind of thing so.)  I finally went to see a divorce attorney about 2 years ago and even though he told me I couldn't really leave my husband at this point because we'd filed for bankruptcy a year earlier and half that payment would have to come out of my SSD, leaving me about $400 to live on, I went back and told my husband, and made him look at me while I told him, that I'd been to an attorney and unless he started taking his medications on a regular basis with someone more trained for dealing with this than our family doctor, he would be out of the house right after Christmas.  Bad timing on my part, but my point was made.

Finally, after 14 year, I wasn't a single parent.   For my kids, who'd come to me over the years and said they wished Dad would be a Dad again, he was. It took a while, and there have been bumps along the way.  But we're getting there.

I still don't have my dream life.  That dream is a memory.  But my husband and I are learning to be a couple again.  He's finally admitted the fact that I have an illness and an injury and can't back  can't do everything  when I'm constantly in pain, not to mention all the other symptoms that go along with Sjogrens.  He's started talking to me about what it's like to be in pain and tries to understand the Sjogren's.  It's still a battle at times, but it's much better than it was. He's even FINALLY starting to work on our dream home.  We'll never have the money to make it what we planned, but we're doing what we can.

So I  can truly relate to what you are going through. When I could no longer work, I had to grieve that side of my identity which was very important to me.  I loved the work I did and I had to come to grips that I would never be able to do that again.  There was also the loss of my husband's being part of the family and his loss of affection.  Oh, if there was really something big going, you might raise a bit of interest from the recliner where he watched the weather station if he wasn't at work, but this was not the family I'd dreamed of.

One thing that really helped me during all of this was finding a very good therapist, one who had worked with people with in chronic pain.  It's been 14 years since I started working with Al, and I still see him on and off today when things get tough. He's really helped me realize that I've needed to go through the grieving process for the loss of my dreams, but also to find things I could dream about.  Maybe on a smaller scale, but dream none the less.  

My kids and I have had some really tough times when they blamed me for all that went wrong in our family.  But we're closer now than we've ever been.  My youngest is in Iraq, and my oldest makes sure to call or come by to help fill the void.  My youngest keeps in touch at least once a week and usually more by email or calls, and though we wish he were home,I can see that  his National Guard experience has made him so much more aware of how important our family is to him.

I hope you find some comfort in the fact that you are a strong, loving mother for your kids. And that you allow yourself to grieve your old dreams, all the time plotting some new ones.  I never feel more like the "old" me than when I'm working on a project that will help my family, help someone else, or even help me a bit.  I love making cards and scrapbooks, and in some small way, they've taken over the creative side of me I thought I'd lost.

Take care, Christi, and remember we're here to offer what help we may have to offer, or just listen when you need to scream, cry or just talk to someone who understands your illness AND what it's doing to you life,

Take care
55yo Sjogren's, Fibro, Selective IgM Def., back pain - fused L3/4-L5/S1,  Costochondritis, Achilles tendon tear,  cluster headaches
Plaq, Medrol, Vit D, Arava, Rituxan, Mobic, Evoxac, Tumeric 1000mg daily, Cymbalta, Fiorcet, Klonopin, Soma, pain med.


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2009, 01:31:13 PM »
Hi, I asked my husband for a divorce and to leave the family home (took him 6 weeks to go) and since then I've been by myself. We'd been married for 15 years, together for 20.  After my girls were born, my ex became extremely lazy so I did nearly everything, and he was verbally abusive so I lost all respect for him. The marital stress was making my health worse and making our 2 daughters anxious so the cycle had to be broken. I realised that things would only get worse and I wanted to set good examples for my daughters. My ex was devastated when the marriage broke up although we'd talked about it often, the reality of it hit him hard. My daughters lived with me and stayed with their father in the weekends which worked well.

Individually, we both became better parents and more functional adults. My ex had to step up and father his daughters and look after himself, which he was very capable of doing and I had one less child to look after (him) and more free time. I was lucky that my ex always financially contributed to the girls upbringing. Since that time (1996) I've had one serious relationship although I wasn't prepared to live with him, and always put my girls and my health first. My ex finally cleaned up his act and met a very nice lady along the way.
My daughters are now grown, well adjusted and have partners who respect them and who share or do more than their share of the daily grind...they expect nothing less  :)

It's hard going when you're in the midst or aftermath of a divorce but it does get better and you reap the reward later on. Keep your expectations realistic and don't for a minute think that a 'couples relationship' is the only way to go. Being happy by and with yourself is infinitely preferrable to being unhappy in a 'relationship'.

Take care, you'll get through,
Lesley (New Zealand)


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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2009, 10:03:42 AM »
Thank you to everyone for your replies, it really does help to know that i am not alone in this struggle.. i have good days and bad, and you are right grieving the process of loss, even if it isnt a death is probably the point i am now... Not only the reality of the dream i had, but also the reality that people are not all nice and caring.. that one was relaly hard to swallow also..

i am sorry for all of you for your pain at times, and for your life being such a struggle, i am glad though for the opportunity to get to know you, if even in a small way through this board..

i hope to one day have the same strong outlook you all do, i know it will happen and half of me is starting to reprogram...

thank you again!! and i hope that your lives continue on a positive path.



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Re: off topic, but maybe someone can relate
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2009, 02:45:30 PM »

I can't add anything to what the other wonderful ladies have said, so I'll just send you a big sisterly hug.