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02-18-2013, 09:57 PM   #1
east+coast+crohny
 
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kentville, Nova Scotia
Doomed Newlyweds?

So you can read my back story here if you like.

Basically I'm worried my marriage is going to turn into a statistic.
I was diagnosed a few months before getting married and I feel like our entire relationship has gone downhill since then. I've never been an overly active person, but now I have no energy to do anything (mainly because I used up all I had at work). My husband is very active, plays basketball, dodgeball, etc... five nights a week. Usually he's not getting home until just before I'm going to bed for the night. When he doesn't have something on the go he comes home and we have supper, he falls asleep and wakes up usually once I'm in bed and then he's not tired anymore. Needless to say, he basically sleeps on the couch until midnight or so once I'm completely asleep then he comes to bed. We haven't been intimate more than 5 times since being married (17 months ago).
I've had setons in basically since just after being married and I've gained back quite a bit of weight since being diagnosed/starting Remicade. I feel like shit and I feel like I look like shit and there's not part of me that feels sexual or desirable.
Once in a blue moon he'll try to "put the moves" on me, and if I don't go for it, well suddenly he's not tired anymore and gets up from bed and goes to the couch. I know he's tired and frustrated with this too. But I have no comforting words and I have no arguments...
I cry myself to sleep 6/7 nights a week. I don't think he realizes how much pain I'm in emotionally, I haven't told him, he's a caring person, he knows about my physical pain and all the things I've gone through, I just don't think he realizes what a toll this is taking on my emotionally.
I think I'm looking for ways to make this work. Maybe the only answer is therapy, but it kills me to think that we need therapy a year into our marriage. I just don't know what to do and I'm so scared he's going to leave me. I don't have close friends around anymore and I just hold everything inside...I've now realized I'm rambling so I'm going to stop now.
Maybe someone has been through this....? I'm sure anything can help.
I'm scared of being alone but I feel so alone already...I'm scared to talk to him about all of this because all I do is cry whenever I start talking about it.
02-18-2013, 11:00 PM   #2
Jennifer
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Sorry you're going through such a difficult time.

If you're thinking of going the therapy route then it might be best for you to be seen alone to try and work out your own issues before you go into marriage counseling. A therapist will help you learn to talk about your feelings with your husband so you don't fall to pieces every time you try to talk about it. Plus crying yourself to sleep just about every night is a definite sign of depression. Its going to be hard to work on a marriage when you need help yourself. So my suggestion is for you to seek help first and then go from there.

My husband and I do go through dry spells for months and we've only been married for 5 months now. We both have health problems and both suffer from depression so it can be hard to get in the mood even if you're suddenly feeling better physically that day. One thing that I learned here on the forum is to do your best to take advantage of those days that you're starting to feel well. I know for my husband oral sex goes a long way if you're not feeling up to having intercourse.

Would it be possible for you both to spend more time together? I know for me in order to feel close enough to my husband where I want to be intimate I need to spend actual time with him like snuggling up on the couch while watching a movie or something. If your husband is sleeping at different times, in different places and is rarely home then he needs to try and spend more time with you. I don't know if you're suggested spending more time with him or not by doing something you both enjoy which wont take a lot of energy out of you like watching TV together, giving or getting a foot rub (or both give and get a foot rub on the couch, dual foot rubs aren't bad) etc.

I don't think you're doomed. Just hitting a rough patch early on but I think you can pull through. Keep us posted on how you're doing.
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Diagnosis: Crohn's in 1991 at age 9
Surgeries: 1 Small Bowel Resection in 1999; Central IV in 1991-92
Meds for CD: 6MP 50mg
Things I take: Tenormin 25mg (PVCs and Tachycardia), Junel, Tylenol 3, Omeprazole 20mg 2/day, Klonopin 1mg 2/day (anxiety), Restoril 15mg (insomnia), Claritin 20mg
Currently in: REMISSION Thought it was a flare but it's just scar tissue from my resection. Dealing with a stricture. Remission from my resection, 17 years and counting.
02-18-2013, 11:38 PM   #3
mwkwmn
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Kentucky
I am so sorry to hear of your marriage. I to am married for 17 years and I was in the hospital and came home and found my wife had moved out with my son and we are getting a divorce. In my situation in was the one with crohns and was very loving and wanted intimacy but she did not. After 3 years of me trying everything to make her happy she was not interested. She wouldn't even take me to the hospital or come see me while I was there. I to was very scared to be alone but I'm getting through one day at a time. Feel free to pm me anytime and I will be of any support to you I can.
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Crohns 1993
Adrenal insufficiency 2005
Blood clots 2006
Low testosterone 2006
Osteoporosis 2011

Meeds
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02-21-2013, 01:29 PM   #4
hannah-rose
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I don't think he realizes how much pain I'm in emotionally, I haven't told him, he's a caring person, he knows about my physical pain and all the things I've gone through, I just don't think he realizes what a toll this is taking on my emotionally.
First of all, sending lots of hugs and support your way! Your situation sounds awful and I feel so sorry for you, you're obviously a lovely person and you don't deserve to be unhappy.

I guess my first suggestion would be to talk to your husband. If you don't think he knows how you're feeling, then you might be surprised when he explains how he's feeling. You say he's a caring person, and if that's true he will listen to how you're feeling, and try to make you happy.

How was your relationship before you got married? I also get what you're saying about not feeling sexy or desirable. At the moment, I would quite happily put on a tight dress and heels and go on a night out feeling fantastic, but when I was really ill and I had my big ulcer, I didn't feel sexy at ALL. I had a bf at the time, and when we tried to be intimate, it was just so difficult both emotionally and practically. Ok so you've put on a bit of weight, so what? A friend of mine is a big girl, I mean about a size 20 probably, and her and her bf have a great and very active sex life! It's probably cliche but pampering yourself will help. Go buy some lovely bath and body stuff, have a soak, paint your nails, do your hair and makeup, put your best perfume on and an outfit you feel great in, and you'll feel so much better. Maybe it'll give you the confidence to sit down with your husband and explain to him how you've been feeling.

Let us know how it goes!
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Diagnosed 2011
Current meds: 6MP and plenty of exercise!
Previous meds: Metronidazole, Infliximab, Humira, Azathioprine
02-21-2013, 02:01 PM   #5
katiesue1506
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Join Date: Nov 2006
You are still very fresh into the coping process. I don't think I "got over" my diagnosis for 3 or 4 years after. You might still have a way to go before you can completely accept your diagnosis and even turn the bad situations into humorous ones. Like "oh man... I shit my pants again, oh welllll".

I think you need to work on your own feelings first before pulling him into marriage counseling. Be honest with yourself and understand that you don't have to "get over" your diagnosis on any schedule. You will have feelings and you have to let yourself have those feelings to be able to get through your diagnosis in a healthy way (emotional health).

I would imagine that he feels unloved because he does try to start things with you and you can't respond because you don't "feel sexy". I completely understand not feeling pretty or up to it, but he does have needs too. Dealing with a chronic illness is not easy at all and its so easy to get caught up in the things that you are going through, the things that you feel, and how much you are hurting that we often forget about what the others around us are going through.

Its SO not easy to watch the person you love go through things like Crohn's flares. I didn't quite understand this myself until my mom was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. I would say its so much easier for me to deal with my symptoms than it is for me to watch my mom in pain. So I took these feelings and I transferred them to how my husband must feel. Your husband probably feels helpless... which is not an easy feeling for most men to deal with.

All you can do is keep the lines of communication open between your husband and you. Make sure he knows how much you appreciate him, ensure that he knows if you turn down sex... its not because of him. As Crabby also said, oral sex is generally something that can replace full sex when you aren't feeling well which can not only serve his needs but show him that you do still have those feelings for him.

This sounds probably pretty callous, but just because he doesn't have Crohn's does not mean he isn't suffering too. In fact, he probably doesn't tell you his feelings about the situation because he sees how much you ARE dealing with.

You have to talk about your feelings so he knows exactly where you are... just as he needs to talk to you so you know where he is. Any marriage, regardless of chronic illness would not do well without communication. Its okay to cry... you have to let yourself do that sometimes. Just remember that after you've cried you can pick yourself up and have a happy day.

I hope this doesn't sound mean... I just think he's hiding a lot of feelings too and it seems like he could also be hurting.
02-22-2013, 01:03 AM   #6
east+coast+crohny
 
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Thanks for all the responses. I'm going to try talking and expressing my feelings this week.
I will post with updates.
02-22-2013, 10:50 AM   #7
lisakuney
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TMI ALERT!!!




There are other options besides intercourse and oral as well. Don't know how well-endowed you are, but boob jobs are easy to give and don't make you gag Astroglide is your friend here.

I have had so many different health issues over the 23 years hubby and I have been together, that we have become creative in overcoming obstacles. I have learned that sometimes I need to make my husband feel loved by doing something sexual when I don't feel sexy. I don't feel obligated, I want to do something that makes him happy, and nookie does it.

I joke about "taking one for the team", but really I would do anything to make him feel happy, loved, and appreciated. He is beyond supportive of me. There is no "normal" sex life. Everyone's is different for different reasons.

Don't read too much into your husband going to the couch after striking out. It's difficult to sleep when you are curled up next to someone who drives you wild when you are aroused.

Hang in there. You love each other and that makes it easier to negotiate these difficulties. Having frank conversations about the issues will help a lot too.
02-22-2013, 12:00 PM   #8
Ya noy
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I'm so sorry to hear you are having such such a difficult time. I wish I could tell you that sex isn't important, but I'd be lying. It's not even so much the act itself, but the bond that's established through the act of intimacy. The craving to be touched, held, cherished and loved is intrinsic, an integral part of our very being. It'd not just men either, I have female friends who went outside their marriage after their husbands lost interest. Said that without intimacy, they just didn't didn't feel loved.

Right now, you are feeling very scared and insecure, and a lot of that is because you are afraid that your husband is losing interest, and will leave you. He is probably feeling just as isolated and insecure, because you've actually already lost all interest in him. Men don't just need sex, they need to feel that you want them as much as they want you. Not receiving the security of feeling they are desirable, is devastating. It shatters their confidence in their own self-worth, not only as a man, but in all their other abilities as well.

One suggestion might be that while he's playing dodgeball, you take a nap, so you will be well rested when he gets home. Either that, or go with him, and cheer him on. Would either be possible? If I tell my husband that I'm not feeling up to intercourse, so how a BJ (oral) instead? He rejoices at his good fortune. If I give him a sensual massage or perform one of my more interesting dances for him first, by the time I get down to business, he's just about done.

Maybe you could try subtly seducing your husband. Even if it's been a while, most men are pretty easy and respond enthusiastically to the slightest encouragement, so text him sexy messages throughout the day. Most men are also highly visual, so you could try serving a romantic dinner by candlelight dressed in a sexy outfit, or google; "flirty girl fitness", for a sensual exercise routine you can just happen to be doing as he walks in the door. http://www.videoks.info/d11c64fb6.html.

Most women are stimulated more by their own mental imagery, so for me, just making the preparations for a romantic evening, selecting an outfit, and setting the stage is what puts me in the mood.

A lot of meds can cause nausea, and some are prone to mouth ulcers, so even oral is not always a possibility. When you turn him down and he leaves for the couch, I'm sure you realize he's probably relieving himself. My husband had to travel for business for a number of years, and sometimes couldn't come home for a month or two at a time, so we played "phone sex" together instead. To make a game of it doesn't actually require a phone. Just get some candles, scented oils, and ask if he'd like some company. Better yet, tell him how much you miss his ______ and if you can't have sex, you want visitation rights.

I agree with those who recommended that you might wish to consider therapy for yourself, to assist in guiding you through the grieving process of your diagnosis. There's an excellent post on this at the beginning of this section, http://www.crohnsforum.com/showthread.php?t=22520

I wish you and your marriage all the best.
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