Annie Lane: My partner’s health issues are impacting my mental health – Austin Daily Herald
Annie Lane: My partner’s health issues are impacting my mental health
Posted 5:29 p.m. on Friday, May 26, 2023
Dear Annie: My partner was disabled last year and is confined to a wheelchair. At the moment, he is in the hospital and has been since last August. When he was in the spine unit, I only saw him three days a week, but I FaceTimed every day. Now that he’s closer to me, he wants me to be by his bedside seven days a week.
My doctor, who knows us both, said I needed to take time for myself and explained it to my partner, but he always complains that I am not in the hospital seven days a week for five hours Everytime. When I go there, he mostly sleeps or complains to the nurses that he wants his medicine. I understand that this is a drastic change in his life and that my life has to change too, but is it wrong to want two days for me so that I can relax and do what I need to do? Please help.
— Bedside link
Dear bedside: Look at it this way: you can go to the hospital seven days a week, make yourself unhappy and make your partner unhappy with your pessimistic attitude, OR you can go to the hospital three days a week, take care from you the other four days (and maybe FaceTime when alert), and be genuinely uplifting and helpful when you’re with your partner. The choice is yours.
• • •
Dear Annie: I am writing about “Toddler Missing Daddy”, who was the wife who sought help with her emotionally distraught daughter when the husband of the house drove a truck for days at a stretch. It made me wonder if Dad is becoming the “fun” parent because he’s less present.
When our now adult children were very small, my husband was away from 8 am to 6 pm most days, sometimes until 11 pm, two to three days a week. I was at home with the children. The days were often long and hard. Routine got me through it. When dad was home, he was the fun parent and the schedules went out the window.
The kids got tired, and I was the “bad guy” who had them when they were exhausted and causing tantrums. It was I who “forced” them to eat their vegetables, brush their teeth and go to bed on time; who took care of swimming lessons, dentist and doctor appointments, speech therapy, medication, and also played with them all day while keeping the house clean, food in the fridge and everything the rest.
Once we realized that, we made sure he spent time on the chores I usually did, like swapping laundry while I was doing puzzles with the kids or cooking while I was snuggling up on the couch. with them. I loved your calendar idea. Being able to cross out days and have a concrete symbol of how much time is left until dad gets home is perfect.
This step passes. It looks like it won’t, but it definitely will.
— Mom who can identify
Dear Mom: A great suggestion and one that a few other readers have also written about. It’s not only important for the kids to see, but also for both parents to strike and maintain the right balance between chores and play. Even though dad might not be around all the time. at home, it is crucial that he makes the most of it when he is, in the role not only of father, but also of husband and partner.
Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected].