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Thread: Anybody married out there?

  1. #1
    Senior Member anban's Avatar
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    Anybody married out there?

    Hello forum! I am new here, but already I can see that this is a forum I will be visiting quite often, as this is the best sense of community I have found since becoming injured in August of 2007. I am a 34-year-oldC5/C6 quad who has been married for 12 years. I have two children and work part time.
    I am wondering if there are any other women out there married to an able-bodied spouse? I see posts from men married to able-bodied women all the time, but am having a hard time finding people in the reverse situation.
    For you married female quads- are you able to be intimate with your husband? I have found myself going deeper and deeper into a care provider/patient situation with my husband and we both want it to stop but neither one of us to how to get out of it.
    Does anyone have the experiences/suggestions/ideas?

  2. #2
    There are many women with SCI here who have AB spouses or S0s. I am sure they will chime in. You may want to apply for membership to our Women's Only forum where your discussions will be more private (no men allowed!). See the "sticky" topic at the top of this forum for how to do that.

    Is your husband your only caregiver? Does this include bowel and bladder care? I always recommend if at all possible NOT to have your lover do this type of care. It is extremely difficult to maintain a lover relationship if this is occuring. Is there any way you can get a part time attendant to take on some of this to free your husband up to be your lover and spouse (only)??

    Do you sleep in the same bed?

    (If you want this moved to Women Only, just let us know)

    (KLD)

  3. #3
    Hi, anban
    Welcome to CC. It's been a great help to us.
    My wife has the SCI. We are in a similar situation to that you describe. I can only agree with KLD's recommendation, but we don't really know how else to manage things - it's a lot easier to say than to do. One difference is that we are older - I'm 63, she's 67, with our children grown.
    - Richard

    (of course, if this thread is moved to Women Only, I can't follow it. Maybe that forum should be renamed "Mature People Only")

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by rfbdorf View Post

    (of course, if this thread is moved to Women Only, I can't follow it. Maybe that forum should be renamed "Mature People Only")
    I'd nominate you for honorary membership! I know what you have to contribute and it is priceless.

    Anban-I'm C5-6 incomplete SCI for 9 yrs-ack!, also w/ graves disease, and am 49. My husband of 24 yrs (come Monday) is AB. I'm fortunate that my husband never had to provide intimate caretaking for me, so I can't advise you there. I moderated the Relationships and Sexuality forum here at CC for 4 yrs or so, and have done a lot of online research on the subject. The biggest hurdles to intimacy in our situation are mental, esp. w/ your husband doing the nitty-gritty personal care.

    How does he feel about that? How does he feel about you sexually now?

    My husband was afraid he'd break me for a very long time. Our biggest problem in that arena, other than my bad health, is that arousal stimulates my pain centers. I get sick of hearing myself say Owww! Dear! You're touching my foot again!

    Research shoes that orgasms aren't much less common in SCI women than AB's, apparently b/c the vagus nerve bypasses the spinal cord, giving us an alternate pathway. Specific stats are that AB woman are 57% orgasmic, SCI's 50%. The orgasmic potential of an sci woman is apparently unrelated to level or severity of injury.

    And now you know all i do on the subject. Welcome to CC!

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Hi, I am t7-8, 4 years now. I have 4 kids, almost grown. We will have been married for 30 years this fall. Like others, I think that makes a difference. Our marriage is at a different place than it was when we were younger.

    My husband also hasn;t had to do the nitty gritty care. I am really glad about that, because when I first came home I needed help with showers, and it sure wasn;t the same as showering together before!

    Like Betheny, one of our big issues early on was his fear of breaking me. Now, too there are issues as to where I can and can;t be touched. And these places don;t stay the same day to day. Now, things are so-so in that arena.
    T7-8 since Feb 2005

  6. #6
    Senior Member WLC's Avatar
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    hi,
    i have a c5/6 sci and have been injured for 25 years. i'm 44 yrs old. i have had several relationships - been married, divorced and now been with an AB for 4 1/2 years.
    it is preferrable not to have your partner take care of you but sometimes you have no choice. my partner helps me at night but not during the day unless we go away for a weekend and want to be alone. i know that he is still very much attracted to me.
    can you get others to help sometimes?
    if you want, feel free to e-mail me at mobilewendy@gmail.com

  7. #7
    Senior Member Evonne's Avatar
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    I am a C 4/5 quad married and we have a 6 yr old son. My husband has really stepped up. B4 my injury we shared many things.....ie takin kids to & from school, meals, cleaning, etc. Now, my husband does the lion share of these activities, along with helpin me I got a good one in the deal.

    My husband has had to help with those awful BM issues. I figure it's just a way of life for us now, if I had a caregiver to help out I would but they are not always around. I remember a HORRIBLE experience I had and will never forget, I now have constipation issues due to the meds i take for pain, I take milk of magnesea to help. Well, the 1st time i took it i did not know how it worked and did not read the instructions. So, I am in Walmart with my 6 yr old son buying him Pokemon cards and WHAMOLITERALLY. Thank Goodness we were in the toy isle and I had Yoga pants on, but it still sucked. I just told my son we had to go, he's pissed cause he wants his cards, and all I wanna do is get outta the store. Well, we get to the car I finally settle my son down by tellin him what happened and thankgoodness I have beachtowels in my truck. I called my husband on my cell phone, he's at home, i'm in tears and he just says get home and well take care of it.

    Well, when I open the garage door there's my husband in shorts and a t-shirt with rubber boots to his knees and rubber gloves on and he's holding a rubber bucket & a handful of old towels....i just had to laugh through my tears. I pulled in and my son bolts outta the back seat and says " Daddy, Daddy, Mama Pooped in her pants!"......again I had to laugh through my tears.

    Dont know why I got into all of that other than to say, my husband & I deal with this as best as we can. He does take care of me at times, but I try to do many things on my own and help him out where I can. I do work outside the home full-time and that takes alot of energy out of me.

    I'll end with sayin that night when we put our son to bed and said prayers we did have to have that little talk with him that goes something like "now Andrew u know u don't go to school tellin all the teachers or your friends or ANYBODY that Mama pooped her pants in Walmart right??" That just stays with the family..........kinda like this huh


    E-von
    I have a spinal cord injury...a spinal cord injury DOES NOT have me!

    walking quad-Central Cord Syndrome

  8. #8
    That's a sweet story Evonne,although I'm sure you didn't feel so sweet @ the time.I've seen my husband more than once w/ the gloves on too.The first time he had to help me w/ an accident I cried all the way through it.We just laugh now.The only thing that he helps me w/ is getting ready for bed,but accidents don't always happen conveniently when you have access to other helpers.

    I definately reccomend finding others to help w/ the real personal care.I do realize that it's just not that easy though and most have to do what they have to do.If the financial aspect is an issue,possibly a volunteer or family member?To avoid the real intimate bowel care help,maybe you could go the colostomy route instead?I had a couple of issues in rehab leading me not to be able to be fully independent although I tried for like 8 months.Have you went this route yet?

    As far as intimacy,it took about a year 1/2 to get here,but things are much better.Mine too was afraid of breaking or hurting me,esp. since @ first I got mild AD.His biggest issue was feeling as if he were just using or raping me b/c of the sensation issue for me.I gained more feeling and learned to accept the "new deal" and he still didn't believe me but thought I was just saying it to make him feel better about the situation.I had a huge problem @ first due to self image issues and mad b/c I felt as if I could only lay there like a lump on a log.Now,it's all pretty normal.

  9. #9
    Quad 79-My shelter dog Dingo and I like your signature!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by betheny View Post
    Quad 79-My shelter dog Dingo and I like your signature!
    Thanx B and D

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