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I could use some advice. To make it short, I am a 45 year old woman, married 10 years, one child - age 7. The past 2 years have not been great for me personally as I have been under a lot of stress - in a nutshell: life as I knew it has been put on hold due to caregiving for a loved one, currently in the throes of perimenopause, and having a few hopes and dreams smashed by the economy. I haven't really been able to leave my house for more than a few hours at a time for the past 2 years. I feel horribly isolated. My husband works long hours and my child began first grade this year so she is gone all day as well. I worked before my child came along and then became a SAHM. Big mistake for me - I just wasn't cut out for the life. But I did the best I could to fullfill the role of mother/wife/housekeeper, etc...I had thought once my child was in school I would return to doing something as far as career or returning to school. I have not been able to do that because of the caregiving I provide now. I have become a pretty unhappy person. I try to keep it in perspective - I am under no financial or spousal pressure to return to work and I know the caregiving will end. But I don't know if this could go on for 5 more months or 5 more years. I should add that I am not resentful of this role - I would never turn my back. It has just worn me down daily and brought me to the unhappy place I am at now. This gets to the point of where I need advice. For the past 2 years as I have felt my hopes & dreams crumbling, I feel like my husband has just gone on with his life - the struggles and problems I have are MINE and not his. And I get that they are, but I also feel like I could have used a lot more shoulder to lean on. He watched me fall apart. I don't feel I was thrown an anchor when I really needed one. Now I am horribly resentful and the marriage is in a very bad place - adding to my unhappiness. He has gone on with his life - climbing the ladder and participating in hobbies all on his own schedule. I do feel like I shouldn't feel resentful - why should his life stop just because mine had to? I feel like I should just "buck up" and not feel sad about all the unanticipated things in life that threw me off my plans - I mean, that's what life does right? I'm just not handling it well. And even though I feel righteous in my anger at my husband, I also feel like I am misplacing much of it. Gosh, can anyone read through this mess and offer some insight? Thanks
i'm sorry for all you're dealing with.
i don't think your anger at your husband is misplaced, I think it's justified. You're a team, a partnership. He should be at your side helping you, not continuing on with his life, as if he doesn't notice what you're struggling with.
would it be possible to hire a caregiver to free up some of your time to pursue something you'd like to do?
i think you have a right to be upset by husbands lack of support. i would be if it was me. do you still love your husband? and is he loving at all to you? you really need to talk to him and tell him you need some love and support on your side. he is been selfish but if you dont say anything maybe it wont change although as you said he has seen you crumble it should be instant support without you having to say anything. you happy with your husband at all? if nothing changes this is how your life will always be. time passing by, opportunitys passing by. you need to act now, do something now else it will only get worse. can you little boy stay at a friends house one night sometimes and you dont do house work. have a complete day off. pamper yourself. get your girlfriends round or go shopping. you are NOT living you are just existing if you know what i mean. one life, live it, enjoy it as best you can.
I'm sorry for what you're dealing with, your hubby should be helping you with whatever you need at home. You should do list of things you want him to do for you on daily basis. I know that you are not at work in the coororate field but one thing i can tell you, taking care of a love one at home is a real job and at times can be more tiring than if you had an outside job. You, like your husband, do need time to go out. You should go out more often and find new things to do such as the library, park, a jog, bike ride, and socialize to meet new people. You should check out your citie's events and attend few of those, a lot of cities do have a lot of free events for children too which yu guys can attend as a family.
Your resentment is justified. Marriage is a partnership and you've been left to "deal" while he goes on.
I think the idea Rosequartz gave for hiring a caregiver is excellent if you can afford it. At the very least you need to book you time. You are a wife, a mother, and a caregiver but you are also person. Everyone needs a moment to breathe.
Hi Baker - I'm your age (never had kids) but I am also in perimenopause. Wow, it's tough, huh? I have a boyfriend though, no husband. I'm sorry you're having such a tough time - just know that yes, it is a LOT to go through, please don't feel that you are being a whiner or that you "should" be able to just "tough it out" or whatnot. A lot has gone on in the last few years that would be difficult for anyone to adjust to (not the least of which would be the changing balance of your marriage). I agree with the other posters who said you should try to find something of your own to do but I think it's also important to try to do things (fun things) with your husband to try to get your connection back with him as well. If you have him more on your side too, he'd be more likely to "help" you out (I know it's pathetic that women have to ASK their husbands to do that but that seems to be the case so much of the time). Believe me, I am NOT one of those Betty Crocker types from the 50's, this is just what I've seen. I know you probably feel like you are drowning right now and the LAST thing you probably want is to indulge HIM, but (god, if my boyfriend read this he'd KILL me!!!) from my experience men can be sort of..... well, they can be like kids. Treat them once in a while and they're happy to help out, you know? THEN you can get your time you need to yourself to recharge and find out what is really missing inside you.

Otherwise your husband will probably fight you on it. I've seen it happen several times........

So long answer short: YES, you are being ENTIRELY reasonable but...... negotiating with men just doesn't seem to WORK the way we seem to want to do it so...... we have to find another way to make it work, you know? Good luck...... hope this helps (and people understand what I am saying! Kind of a "Men are from Mars" type of thing......)
It would help if you said [I]who[/I] you are caring for. Is it his parent? Your parent? Friend?

In any event, I'd look into getting some in-home help with the caregiving. Insurance can often be used. Then you can free up some time to work, volunteer, go for a walk, or whatever. I'm sure that many "volunteer" caregivers in your shoes have a really hard time with the isolation and lost opportunities.

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