Life is not easy. Especially when you are in a family of invisible illnesses and disabilities. It can be serious, funny and downright hard! But we make it. Just like everyone else. We just do it in a different style.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Hard Life Ahead

After the last post, I really hate to change the direction and emotional energy of the blog, but this is supposed to be a real account of the kinds of difficulties the Unique Family goes through. So, today, I am going to cover an area of my life that is unfolding even as I write this.

A while back, I posted an audioblog that attempted to reveal some of the turmoil that has surrounded my personal life for the last several years.

I am talking about my husband and the multiple areas of his life that we are finding out are stunted and deformed.

When I wrote his Update, Update, Part 1, I focused on the epilepsy and sleep apnea, and only lightly touched upon the depression into which he slips every once and awhile.

Today, I am going to tell you what I think is going on. Now, I am not a doctor. We haven't seen any doctors to confirm anything yet, but if there are any parents of children with autism, adhd or learning disabilities out there reading this, you know a problem when you see it.

For years before I met him, my husband put up a very good front for his family and friends. He projected himself as a friendly, outgoing, funny, computer entrepreneur. He had loads of friends, loved to eat out and go to the movies. And yet, certain things didn't line up. Little stories would sneak out now and then.

Like his fear of needles. No one loves them, but we would not jeopardize our health to avoid them. He would.

He seemed to be indecisive. Any decision took so long to make and then he second-guessed himself two, three or more times.

The people closest to him didn't seem to be going anywhere. For all his "out-goingness" and entrepreneurial drive, he picked people that weren't progressing or growing to be his closest friends.

His family, openly verbally abused him, calling him very degrading names.

Still, he seemed to be looking positively into the future when he met me, and he wanted my children and I to be a part of it. He won me over with his sense of humor, his loyalty and patience, especially since he walked into my life when I was on a downward spiral with my health.

But,the truth is, the whole thing was a facade.

He is not a successful businessman.
He is not a person who can lead a business or a family.
He cannot handle financial responsibility.
He does not have many friends and frequently offends the ones he has.
He is not respected at his job.

I could go on, but, one, I think you get the idea, and two, seeing it in print is depressive.

But it is the truth.

The past several months have been one of major enlightenment for me as the house of cards slowly fell apart. Financially, physically and emotionally.

When I did the audio-blog and even the post about going on a Faith Walk, it was in the midst of understanding that the task before was not small. It was a monumental undertaking that might drain everything I had in me in order to see it through. I faced the fact that my marriage was not going to be what I hoped it would be, followed by a little trickle of fear that hissed, "Run for your life!"

Today, almost a month since the beginning of the Faith Walk, I'm ready to state some truths and affirm the mission I intend to embark on as long as I can.

The Truths:

1. My husband is a survivor. He has survived verbal, physical and sexual abuse.
2. My husband has epilepsy and sleep apnea. This may have affected his cognitive functioning.
3. My husband may have a learning disability.
4. My husband suffers with emotional disorders, specifically depression and anxiety disorder.

My affirmations:

I believe that my husband is not a malicious, mean-spirited person, but that for so many years of not getting the help he needed, as an act of survival, he uses deception, lies and fantasy to cope with his deficiencies. He lies not only to me, but to himself.

I believe despite all of his difficulties, he can feel love and does love me and my children.

I believe we are living in the best of times to get help for the ailments/disorders he has.

I believe intellectual and mental disabilities need to be treated with dignity, respect and kindness. Negativity only reinforces the need to deceive and hide.

I believe that the future will be a rough one. I cannot guarantee that I am cut out for this. I respect my right to say I can't.

I ultimately believe that love is the ultimate key to solving these problems. Without love, I turn off the ability to seek information to alleviate them. Without love, I cannot act with compassion. Without love, I manipulate and abuse, making me no different from his other abusers.

I don't know what else to say, except to ask those who pray, do so. Those who believe in positive energy, speak words of affirmation about us. Those with similar knowledge or life experiences, speak freely.

I appreciate everything and anything you do.

Photos were taken from Google Image searches.
Final painting is the work of d.Lawrence Coyle