Monday, April 25, 2011

Leaving and staying

an email from a reader who made the choice to leave:

Ya know...I have been reading your columns for quite some time.  I have been married for 23 years to a non compliant diabetic. I have supported him and tried to get him on the right track for years.  It seems to be a dominos effect.  He is continually tired, crabby and I have too much to offer in life to stick with him any longer.  I am happy to say, I have asked for a divorce 2 weeks ago and haven't been happier.  I am in the process of getting my own place.  He is devastated and wants another chance. Too late for me...he has had many chances for 23 years.  I have not been happier about my decision.  Yes, I have 3 teenage children and altho they are not surpised, one is very angry at me.  I do realize it is a phase and it too will pass.  My happiness means more to me than living in misery and being mentally exhausted.  I was under the name Susie for awhile when posting. That is my update!! Happiness is everything is my motto!!! 

You know, I truly hate it when a marriage ends for any reason. But I completely admire this gal for sticking it out for 23 years with a non-compliant diabetic.  She emailed me subsquently and said the he begged her to stay, started counseling and quit.  If I had even one child at home, I probably wouldn't be here as I would never subject them to the rages of a diabetic low or high.  

Another reader that is staying wrote this:

My DH has coronary disease (had open heart surgery), hep C,fibromyalgiasleep apnea, hepatic encephalopathy (dementia), joint damage, leaky bowel syndrome with chronic inflammation, respiratory allergies, and complete denial of his diabetic needs. Last fall he was diagnosed with cirrhosis and told he shouldn't take anything for pain if he can help it, that he probably isn't a safe candidate for the hip replacement and rotator cuff surgery he needs, and that he is a poor risk for a liver transplant which he will likely need in 1-2 years.  It's not uncommon for him to range from 55 to 486 in a day. His dr is happy if he can just stay in the high 100s. But of course that won't happen when he cannot (will not?) eat sanely or push himself to exercise even a little. Yet I can't really blame him given how much pain he lives with.
It is so hard to know he is dying slowly and there's really nothing I can do except take the obvious steps in an acute situation like a Low, and (as you do) save myself. Despite the nasty mood swings and other unpleasantries of his illness, the guy adores me and I still love him - we will celebrate 28 years of marriage next month. He has been a faithful husband but for his love affair with Death. She keeps trying to steal him from me, and he won't stop flirting with her. One day she will win.
 It's hard not to sound like a sad country song sometimes! Lol - lately I've been humming a lyric that says: " I can't love you any more." I can love him always, but no more than I do or can, and eventually I'll be loving a memory of him. In some ways it is already like that, because his illnesses have changed him so much.  No amount of my love can fill the emptiness and pain he lives with. Accepting that, and letting go of my craving need to fight for him, is the biggest challenge I've ever faced.
Thanks so much for listening. I'm not in a cheery place often these days so your posts really help me. Maybe one day I will be able to rise above the sadness as you do. 

I remembered this writer as someone who used to email me awhile back. I was so happy to hear from her again, but agast at the list of complications her hubby has.  But she has one single strong statement in the middle of this.....

"it is so hard to know that he is dying slowly and there's really nothing I can do except takethe obvious steps in an acute situation like a low...."


"his love affair with Death. Shekeeps trying to steal him from me, and he won't stop flirting with her.  One day she will win."

I know this is the common bond that we all share.  We don't say it, but we know it.  She is an elloquent writer and should blog, but I also know how hard it is to write about this life on a daily/weekly basis.  It is not easy.  And I think it may be the very reason we make the choice to leave, or to stay.


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