Husband avoiding problems
My husband has Multiple Sclerosis and is worsening year by year. We, or should I say I, have begun looking into what we need to do financially to protect ourselves as much as possible for the likelihood of a crisis in the future. When I ask questions about what health or life insurance coverage he (we) will have through his company if he goes on long term disability, I am either met with a "Well, I think....." or a laugh, like I'm crazy to be so concerned.
How do I handle and communicate my frustration to a guy who does not seem to be part of the problem-solving but rather, puts his head in the sand or seems condescending? Am I ridiculous for wanting his involvement?
Katie, no I don't think you are ridiculous at all. I think it is very prudent and responsible to try to plan for any eventuality, no matter how much you both wish that it will prove unnecessary. It does sound as if your husband is putting his head in the sand.
That kind of behavior is actually quite common with people who have chronic and/or terminal diseases. It is a form of grieving. Elizabeth Kubler-Ross delineated the steps of grieving any loss. They are Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Isolation/Depression, and Acceptance.
It sounds as if your husband is either in Denial or Denial's kissing cousin, which is Bargaining; if he just ignores things maybe they won't happen. This is very human and understandable, but it can be very frustrating to loved ones. At its worse, it can leave the loved one with a huge problem as it is very selfish, even if it is understandable.
I would suggest reading Kubler-Ross'ô book "On Death and Dying."Ě I think it would give you a wealth of information about what you are going through and would make you feel less isolated. Then, I would try to talk with him again very seriously and explain to him that you know where he is coming from, but you would really appreciate it if he would try to understand your position. It is a duty any loved one has to their partner.
Don't give up on him and don't be discouraged. He is the one who is acting in a ridiculous manner, not you. Let him know that you both hope and believe that the information will not be needed, but ask him to indulge your own fears. Let him know that it makes a loved one feel helpless when a partner is sick. The information will allow you to feel at least a little more in control.
Jef Gazley, M.S., LMFT
This question was answered by Jef Gazley M.S. Jef has practiced psychotherapy for twenty-five years, specializing in Love Addiction, Hypnotherapy, Relationship Management, Dysfunctional Families, Co-Dependency, Professional Coaching, and Trauma Issues. He is a trained counselor in EMDR, NET, TFT, and Applied Kinesiology. He is dedicated to guiding individuals to achieving a life long commitment to mental health and relationship mastery. His private practice locations are Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. You can also visit Jef at the internettherapist, the first audiovisual mental health online counseling center on the net.For more information visit: http://www.asktheinternettherapist.com/