Tuesday, August 28, 2012


I feel lost in what to do today.

I've been search for help, understanding and a better way to support my husband, but I don't understand.  Everything out there insists that I can't make my whole life about him.  I can't have my whole world revolve around him, I have to have ME time.

Riddle me this: How can I have "me" time when I can't trust him to do the most basic of things?

I'm supposed to give him responsibilities.  I'm supposed to let him do things.  But I'm supposed to help him.  I have to have a way to remind him, make lists, blah, blah blah.

Ok, so I ask him to do stuff.  Then I email him the list of things I asked him to do, then I remind him verbally.  And you know what?  It doesn't get done anyway.  So, now, I have my list of stuff to do, his list of stuff to do, oh, right, and I have to follow around and re-do or fix the stuff he did do, but didn't do correctly.

Forgetfulness is part of PTSD.  That's what they say.

What am I supposed to do when I wake up and find that he did laundry.  Oh, but he FORGOT to go through the pockets and washed ALL of our clothes with an ink pen.  Oh, and he FORGOT to check the dryer before putting the clothes in and dried ALL of my clothes on HIGH, when they can't be dried on that setting.  Oh, and he FORGOT that when air drying stuff, you have to lay it flat on the clothes rack and you can't hang clothes over the pointy edges of stand so now ALL of my clothes have pooches and stretched areas and are wrinkled and need to be ironed... Oh, right, but we don't have an iron because he keeps FORGETTING to put it in our budget.

What am I supposed to do when he does things like he did last night?  He said, let's go to bed.  YOU clean up my mess and I'll walk the dogs.  No, you can clean up your own mess.  Well then YOU walk the dogs.  No, your job is to walk the dogs in the evening.  Then I'M not going to pick up all of this mess.

I woke up this morning to half the dishes done, half of his food picked up and a huge mess on the table.  Yet, it's acceptable to him, that I have to wake up everyday and walk the dogs in the morning, clean the house, pick up his mess and my own, do the dishes, laundry, call the people that need to be called etc, etc.  Oh, and I have a job too.

I'm so ANGRY!!!!!!!!!!  I'm trying.  I am.  I'm trying to understand.  He forgets.  I'm trying to understand.  He can't always do things.  I'm trying to understand.  I can't do everything for him.

How can I not do everything for him, but I'm also supposed to do everything for him?

One website, said, "... if that means the dishes don't always get done, that's ok.  You don't have to do everything all the time.  It's ok if the house is a mess."  True, but what about the ruined clothes we can't afford to replace, what about the dogs he forgets to take care of, the work clothes that have to be clean or we can't go to work (we both wear uniforms to work), what about when we run out of clean dishes, a spill that doesn't get clean up?

How am I supposed to wake up everyday and, with patience, say, "It's ok that he ruined my clothes.  We don't have the money to buy new ones, but I had too many shirts anyway, I can live with three."  "It's ok that food got left out over night.  We live on a budget and those were left overs I could have eaten at work, but hey, who needs to eat?"  "It's ok that I want to cry." "It's ok that I spend my life walking behind him re-doing everything he does, fixing his messes, making his excuses for him, smiling, understanding, talking calmly, never arguing, afraid to set him off, having no one to talk to, and not knowing how I am supposed to live the contradiction of terms that is being a spouse and caregiver to a man with combat related PTSD who is not supposed to let her whole life revolve around him and his illness, but doesn't have time to do anything else because our life will fall apart if I'm not there to keep it together and keep us moving forward."  "It's ok that you're life doesn't revolve around him.  You need to provide structure for him, make lists, hold him accountable, have an emergency plan for anything he might do, have a backup plan for the bills he doesn't pay, make a schedule for him, remind him, and generally run his whole life, but your life shouldn't revolve around him."

It's all ok.

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