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How do I help my husband want to live a full life again

eltonliz79eltonliz79 Member Posts: 1
My husband was injured 01/21/2017, at a C6-7. I’ve stayed by his side through the entire 7 months of Rehab and emergency hospital stays. I’m his full time caregiver as well as his wife. At first he was interested in all the activities and equipment to try in his new lifestyle, but now he lays in bed, 90% of the time, avoiding any movement as much as possible (he has severe nerve pain every single minute of the day) and is just waiting to die. I don’t know what to do. I’ve tried showing him things online that others SCI people do to show he can still do things. I’ve gotten so frustrated now that our relationship is really taking a hit. He feels that nothing he does is good enough for me, but all I want for him is to be happy and active again. I don’t know what to do.


  • AskNurseLindaAskNurseLinda Moderator, Information Specialist Posts: 108 Information Specialist
    25 Likes 10 Comments First Answer Name Dropper
    This is tragic but not uncommon. It is not unusual for people to be gung ho after SCI only to have the exhaustion of the situation set in mentally and physically. People feel guilty about being different from before and having to rely on someone else. The adjustment can be overwhelming. 
    Who would want to do anything when you are in pain? That would be the first step, to get that pain under control. It will take effort but start now as it takes time for medications to work. It is an educated trial and error process but most people do gain control over their pain. One of the easiest treatments for pain is movement. Our bodies crave movement so range of motion especially to the body parts affected by SCI is a good place to start. Staying in bed increases pain.
    Also, depression pays a visit about this time in your husband's recovery process. I am sure he has been working hard and doing all of the 'right' things but is not seeing any return on his investment. 
    The next step is to have a frank talk with him and his healthcare provider. There are treatment options, some that will help with pain control and mental health at the same time. Now, is the time to get started before the situation begins spiraling, if it hasn't already. You might also want to discuss counselling as a couple because spinal cord injury affects everyone in the relationship.
    These are both difficult issues but they can be improved. There is no quick fix or magic words. It is a road that you will need to travel together to get results. Your relationship can survive this but you will need intervention from your healthcare provider. These are health issues that need treatment. Nurse Linda

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    Nurse Linda

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