Relationship advice

For questions on how to support loved ones with MS.

Relationship advice

Postby mayprimrose » Sun Jun 25, 2017 3:47 pm

This is my first time posting on this forum and would appreciate any input/advice/opinions.

So I have been dating a guy on and off for about 2 years now and he has MS. We initially started off as friends and I knew he had MS before we got romantically involved. We have been steadily dating now for about 6 months but the problem is that my family has been disapproving of it since the beginning. I should mention that I'm in my early 20's and he's in his early 30's. They don't approve of the relationship for a few reasons: 1) (As much as I don't agree with them) He has MS. 2) He's much older than me. 3) He doesn't work and lives at home with family. I knew going into this relationship that all these factors exist but it didn't mean anything to me. I had developed strong feelings for him and cared about him a lot. We fell in love and now I feel like we are inseparable.

The relationship has been a rollercoaster due to my family's disapproval and the fact that initially when we first started dating he was having some sort of romantic relationship with 2 friends of his. I found out about them and confronted him and he told me that they were just friends that he dated/flirted with casually. After I found that out my self-esteem immensely dropped and I felt like I needed to win his affection and love. Surely, as time passed he showed his devotion to me although there were many times where I had suspicions about him still being romantic with one of the girls. He'll always deny it but my gut instincts tell me otherwise.

Aside from the family and other female problems, I do genuinely care about him and consider him a great friend. I've just been conflicted about whether or not this relationship is right for me. I love how optimistic he is about life despite all his obstacles and I am always there supporting him during his relapses and doctor's appointments. I am a very nurturing person and love taking care of him (although he is completely independent). I just wonder as time progresses if I'll feel like I've trapped myself to stay with him out of low self-esteem. He has primary progressive MS and I fear losing him sooner than expected. That's why I try to cherish every moment with him and not think about the future. My family tells me that I'm being naive in thinking like that because I am dooming a potential future with a financially stable husband who will be there for our family.

I don't know what to do, I've been feeling this way for 2 years now. I've tried therapy but to no avail. I thought I'd give a forum a try. Thank you for your time and will greatly appreciate any input.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby Zyklon » Mon Jun 26, 2017 6:12 pm

Hello mayprimrose,

What do you think about having kids?
Pain! You made me a, you made me a believer, believer
Pain! You break me down, you build me up, believer, believer
Pain! Oh let the bullets fly, oh let them rain
My life, my love, my drive, it came from... Pain!
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby mayprimrose » Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:29 pm

Hello zyklon,
Honestly, it is my biggest wish to have kids. I am anticipating on the day that I become a mother.

Why do you ask?
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby ElliotB » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:25 pm

You may not like my response, sorry.


It appears your family is giving you good advise, and chances are they are not telling you all the reasons they feel the way they do. I happen to agree with their thoughts. Wait to have children with the 'right' man.

"I don't know what to do"

Actually, it appears you do... do the right thing for yourself and your future children! Be patient... it will pay off!
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby Zyklon » Thu Jun 29, 2017 1:53 am

With kids you have to think about them. Once your boyfriends condition is worse, he will feel terrible because of them. It will make enormous stress and lots of emotional issues. I am pretty sure nobody will be happy and it will be too late. I agree with your family if you want to have kids.

Without kids, you are on your own. Your decision will effect only your life. He may be the 'right' man without kids.
Pain! You made me a, you made me a believer, believer
Pain! You break me down, you build me up, believer, believer
Pain! Oh let the bullets fly, oh let them rain
My life, my love, my drive, it came from... Pain!
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby MSKarateka » Thu Jun 29, 2017 5:09 pm

I apologize for being blunt in advance.

Follow your gut. Your gut is warning you because your subconscious is picking up on something you conscious is not. Don't worry it is totally human primitive survival technique.

If he is as into you as you are into him, he should not be having another casual flirt or more relationship. Your caring nature, in my opinion, is taking advantage of you. The age gap is not a problem for me, or the living with family (as a temporary need), but it seems to be the lack of ambition. You said he is totally independent. There are jobs with varying level of physical demand available.

Without knowing how severe his MS is I will reserve judgment on his living with his mother and not having a job.

Personally, my symptoms are not severe. I work full-time plus overtime in a physically demanding job. I also go to school full-time because I know there will come a time when I will need a less physically demanding job and still need to provide or me and my family. If my other half were not in the picture, I could not get involved with someone knowing what I know about my MS and the path it will take. It is just who I am. I could not burden someone with that.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby mayprimrose » Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:17 pm

Thank you everybody who took their time to respond. Believe it or not I have tried breaking it off with him many times. However the immense guilt I felt for leaving him just because of his condition was unbearable. I couldn't forgive myself and don't think I would be deserving of moving on and being happy with someone else. I can't bear hurting him to that extent. i feel like I'm stuck in limbo.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby MSKarateka » Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:23 am

mayprimrose wrote:Thank you everybody who took their time to respond. Believe it or not I have tried breaking it off with him many times. However the immense guilt I felt for leaving him just because of his condition was unbearable. I couldn't forgive myself and don't think I would be deserving of moving on and being happy with someone else. I can't bear hurting him to that extent. i feel like I'm stuck in limbo.


This is where I think your caring nature is getting in the way of your own happiness.

Either way, it is your choice. If you stay against what your gut is telling you, you should prepare yourself for heartache beyond his MS. If you decide to go, then prepare yourself for the feelings of guilt for a short time that will seem like forever.

Again, I am sorry for my bluntness. Part of my job is teaching medical staff (caring nurturing people by nature) defense techniques. I am blunt there too, in an effort to communicate the brutalities that can happen to them and have happened to others.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby jimmylegs » Fri Jun 30, 2017 2:21 pm

i let a farce of a 'relationship' go on far too long out of anxiety about making the right choice, imagined consequences, and stupid 'what if' scenarios. walked away ten yrs ago and am SO GLAD kids were not part of that long drawn out scenario!!!
odd sx? no dx? check w/ dietitian
DRI=MINIMUM eg bit.ly/1vgQclQ
99% don't meet these. meds/lifestyle can affect levels
status can be low in ms & other cond'ns
'but my results are normal'. typical panels don't test all
deficits occur in 'normal' range
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby mayprimrose » Fri Jun 30, 2017 7:22 pm

jimmylegs wrote:i let a farce of a 'relationship' go on far too long out of anxiety about making the right choice, imagined consequences, and stupid 'what if' scenarios. walked away ten yrs ago and am SO GLAD kids were not part of that long drawn out scenario!!!


Do you mind me asking if you are the one who has MS or was it the other person? once I know I'll be able to ask you some stuff if that's ok. Thank you.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby mayprimrose » Fri Jun 30, 2017 7:25 pm

I feel like just as a friend I want to be there for him. Am I supposed to move on and forget about him and how he's doing?
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby jimmylegs » Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:57 pm

i'm the one with the dx. the relationship was always pretty weak. the friends-after-breakup thing was in the picture for a few years, also sucked, and in the end i walked away from that too.

personally, i don't focus on illness and inevitable decline. i aim for health and make a point of being able to do all kinds of things better than before i was diagnosed.

i've been flying solo for so long now that i can't relate to needing someone to be there for me. i'm fine if my ex has forgotten all about me and how i'm doing!
odd sx? no dx? check w/ dietitian
DRI=MINIMUM eg bit.ly/1vgQclQ
99% don't meet these. meds/lifestyle can affect levels
status can be low in ms & other cond'ns
'but my results are normal'. typical panels don't test all
deficits occur in 'normal' range
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby Zyklon » Sat Jul 01, 2017 7:33 am

mayprimrose wrote:Thank you everybody who took their time to respond. Believe it or not I have tried breaking it off with him many times. However the immense guilt I felt for leaving him just because of his condition was unbearable. I couldn't forgive myself and don't think I would be deserving of moving on and being happy with someone else. I can't bear hurting him to that extent. i feel like I'm stuck in limbo.


A guilt and patient care driven relationship. Where is the love? I think you both do not deserve it and will be unhappy in future. If MS is a big part of your relationship, you do it wrong.
Pain! You made me a, you made me a believer, believer
Pain! You break me down, you build me up, believer, believer
Pain! Oh let the bullets fly, oh let them rain
My life, my love, my drive, it came from... Pain!
Zyklon
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Location: Turkey

Re: Relationship advice

Postby MSKarateka » Sat Jul 01, 2017 9:46 am

mayprimrose wrote:I feel like just as a friend I want to be there for him. Am I supposed to move on and forget about him and how he's doing?


This is where you have to decide whether you can be friends with an ex. You will never forget about him and always wonder how he is doing. You need to decide whether the relationship helps or hinders you. You have to decide rationally whether to maintain a realtionship with him, or if it is your nuturing nature that is being taken advantage of.

My sister-in-law is a collector. My other halfs ex is a collector. They collect all their exes in their life. They think they have to remain in some contact with all their exes. They cannot move on. Would you want a possible relationship with another person to be hindered by your collection?

I have zero contact with exes. I have no clue what they are doing. They are not part of my life. I see no rational reason to keep a collection.

I had friends in college who broke up, got back together, broke up, got back together, etc. Afer graduation they finally split for good, and both are better off for it.
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Re: Relationship advice

Postby jimmylegs » Sat Jul 01, 2017 12:50 pm

this may sound super weird but since there is a nutritional component to depression, which can feature feelings of guilt and anxiety, you might actually be able to do some work on your own physical health and through that, find some relief from the emotional struggle you're dealing with. my lifelong chronic anxiety melted away, along with a bunch of other sucky 'status quo' aspects of my previous life, once i figured out how to do magnesium properly (and with it, many other essential nutrients).
odd sx? no dx? check w/ dietitian
DRI=MINIMUM eg bit.ly/1vgQclQ
99% don't meet these. meds/lifestyle can affect levels
status can be low in ms & other cond'ns
'but my results are normal'. typical panels don't test all
deficits occur in 'normal' range
User avatar
jimmylegs
Volunteer Moderator
 
Posts: 10340
Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2006 4:00 pm

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