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03/21/2012 06:35 PM

Supprting your Partner/Spouse

neomolc
 
Posts: 7
Member

I have been supporting my husband through his panic attacks and anxiety for the past eight years. In the beginning much of it was researching the reasons for panic attacks, trying to explain it to him and also proving to him that the symptoms he showed did not mean he was having a heart attack or a brain tumour. He had just turned 20 when the panic attacks began and he was adamant that he was strong enough to beat them and did not want to use any forms of drugs or medication. We hoped that he would "grow out of them" - that they would burn themselves out and he would be "normal" again, but this never happened. He has had good times too - managed a full year of studying Psychology, finishing with full distinctions and top of his class. Other times, like now, he has been a prisoner to the house, scuttling off to bed the minute a panic attack hits as there he is in his comfort zone and can try and distract his mind from the panic attacks and let the adrenaline levels in his body subside. Finally last year he was prescribed a low dose of Xanax, so he had a limited supply available to him should he have an attack and wanted to take one to help him relax. However because of his anxiety that he may be allergic to the chemicals in the tablet or the fact that it would change him in some way that his body would not understand and make the situation worse!

Being young and feeling trapped in his world stuck in the house, this is not the first time that he has spoken to me about his wishes to end it all, how he is tired of fighting these attacks and does not have the strength to keep on fighting them forever. I am sure that many other sufferers on here have had the same suicidal thoughts and I should be grateful if people could respond and help guide me how I should deal with him. We hope for a long life together and I don't want to lose him now, but I do understand how they have effected him and in reality ruined his life for almost 1/3 of his lifetime. Is there any light at the end of the tunnel which I point out or any advice people have for Eon or I to help him continue on with his life as best he can.

Thanks for reading this and I look forward to reading your replies.

Colm

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03/21/2012 07:04 PM
kildare56
kildare56  
Posts: 4146
Group Leader
I'm an Advocate

I hate to state the obvious, but he should take the meds! He'd rather sound suicidal than admit he needs some medical help? I know this is very hard on you and I do not like to sound this way, but he has to take the meds if he's to feel better. I take them and they do not prevent my functioning.

03/21/2012 07:42 PM
frog44
Posts: 2370
Senior Member

Try to get him to join on here. It has helped me greatly. You have to realize one thing though, is that he has to want to help himself too. You can be supportive and encouraging but he has to want help. I would encourage therapy and offer to go with him if he does not want to go by himself. He can do therapy without meds. Some people are for meds and some are not. I bet if he came on here and saw there were so many people like him, it would make him feel better to not feel alone in this. I wish you luck...take care!

03/21/2012 08:26 PM
mem6526

neomolc,

Hello and welcome!

This is an amazing and very supportive group.

It would be a really good idea for your Husband to come on here and he can express his feelings in his own words. We understand and we do not judge anyone. We will accept him with nothing but kindness and respect.

I appreciate you wanting to help your Husband. But he has to want to help himself. There is always hope as long as a person is alive.

I am not sure about your theory of someone "growing out of them" but I feel with certain coping tools and skills we can better deal with them.

I hope that made sense to you.

We all matter and we all have worth.

Once again welcome and hope that your Husband will post too. Wink


03/25/2012 03:48 PM
neomolc
 
Posts: 7
Member

At the beginning we thought that they were something that he would grow out of same as the way he developed them. He does want help and really does make an effort - he went to college completely under his own steam, and during his last year when studying Counselling and Psychotherapy he had 20 sessions of therapy which didn't appear to help the situation.

He has been recommended to have one minor operation (non serious) but he is too afraid of being under anaesthetic to go ahead with it. Its the same fear of the medication that it is going to re-act and do something to his brain or that he will have a bad reaction to it and die! Living in constant fear is hard to bear.

Post edited by: neomolc, at: 03/25/2012 03:52 PM


03/25/2012 03:52 PM
mem6526

I would strongly suggest that your Husband come here and post.

We all understand and we will not judge him.

This is a very supportive and understanding group.

Hope that you will encourage him to post.

Thanks! Smile


03/25/2012 05:10 PM
sassy2684
sassy2684  
Posts: 443
Member

Neomolc please let your husband know you are here for him and that whenever he wants to talk you are there to listen. It is a good idea that he do take the meds. I was one of those who would not take my meds from fear but the fear comes from the panic. I did have suicidal thoughts, i felt extremely alone (even though my husband was here) and as one who suffers with panic I can feel for your husband as he goes through this. I also feel for you as you are having to come to terms with how he is feeling and help him. By any chance does he see a Therapist? If so maybe go with him to an appointment and let them know how you feel and you want information on how to help him through this. Once again though the best thing for him right now would be to take the meds his dr prescribed. It was prescribed to help him not harm him. I too take Xanax and recently my dr upped my dosage to .5mg 3x a day and I take Zoloft 50mg. Of course my panic kept me from taken them for weeks but once I started I am starting to feel more like myself. As his spouse just try to be there as much as you can and let him know you love him and if he just wants to be held, hold him. Wishing you all the best. Oh and it may be a good idea for him to join here. I found family here on MDJunction, people who understand and support me ((Big HUGS))

04/01/2012 05:16 AM
neomolc
 
Posts: 7
Member

I just wanted to thank everyone for their support on here - Eon and I both read the responses so while the postings may come from me, both of us can feel the support that is out there for us and others like us in similar situations.

The one difference for him is that the prescription that Eon got from his doctor was only for 1 card of 20 Xanax tablets - "to be taken if and when you think you need them". This was before we headed to Spain for a two week holiday in September. One could be taken before going or doing something which he felt may cause him to panic, or one could be taken to try and help him relax and recover from an attack. 6 months later and he still has all the tablets, that is despite the fact that in the last few months his panic seems to have heightened.

Have any others on here been prescribed the drug in this fashion rather than a more regular fashion?


04/01/2012 05:22 AM
njhoppe
njhoppe  
Posts: 2205
Group Leader

Most doctors won't give out an unlimited supply of xanax because of their addictiveness. There are many other medications he could take though on a regular basis to help him. He should go back to his doctor.

04/01/2012 08:30 AM
kildare56
kildare56  
Posts: 4146
Group Leader
I'm an Advocate

The doctor was, in effect, giving him samples in order to find out if it was the right med for him. If he returns to the doctor, does he plan to take the doc's advice this time?
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