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Topic : 05/30 Ask the Authors

Number of Replies: 235
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Friday, May 25, 2007, 01:13:05 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1

Dr. Phil, along with authors Nancy Davis, Mitch Albom and Dr. Dan Siegel, share their secrets for living without regret and finding true happiness even when faced with a challenge. When you get married, it's '’til death do us part, in sickness and in health,’ but what if all of a sudden your spouse is diagnosed with an illness? When Nicole found out she had Multiple Sclerosis, she accepted her fate and learned to adapt. Her husband, Sal, has had a difficult time coming to terms with his younger wife's diagnosis. He says he wants to be supportive and help out, but is he really contributing to Nicole's declining health? Nancy Davis, who also has Multiple Sclerosis, shares her advice for helping this couple heal their marriage. Next, do you find yourself screaming, yelling and cussing with your teenager? Dana says her daughter, Whitney, changed overnight. Her grades went down, she started missing curfew, and she's been caught drinking and smoking. Dr. Dan Siegel shares the secrets for communicating with children and putting an end to the constant fighting. And, chances are you've read one of his nine best-selling books, seen one of his two critically-acclaimed films or tuned into his weekly radio program. Author Mitch Albom discusses his latest novel, For One More Day. Hear the story of a Dr. Phil viewer whose life changed after she read the book. Plus, Dr. Phil gives a previous guest a surprise that makes her already sunny smile shine even brighter! Talk about the show here.


Find out what happened on the show.

 

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May 30, 2007, 3:44 pm CDT

I have MS too

Quote From: slandrasik

 Becky,
I would love a copy of "Understanding What Having MS Means".  I was diagnosed in February of 2004.  After accepting it myself, although I think that is an on going process, the most frustrating part of it all is the constant need to explain things.  My husband and two boys are awesome but they also seem  to forget that this isn't going away like a cold or the flu.  Something that has helped me is a quote that I read every morning.
   "I can be changed by what happens to me.  I refuse to be reduced by it."  Maya Angelou
Thanks sister,
Shelly
slandrasik@yahoo.com


Hi Beck,

I would love to have a copy of "Understanding What Having MS Means"

I was diagnosed in 1/98.  I still have a hard time dealing with this stupid disease!

Thanks,

Kelly

 

kpoteet1970@hotmail.com

 
May 30, 2007, 3:44 pm CDT

Living with MS and not alone

I began my battle with MS (6) six months after I got married.  When the doctor said it was MS I told my husband "Either your in it for the long hall, or bail out now".  Well we have been married for 22 years now.  The MS brought out the best man in him possible.  I do what I can when I can nothing more and nothing less.  I have my moments and sit on my "pitty potty" then I get off of it and start all over again.  I don't have MS  "we" do.  When things get tough we work it out together.  It's our illness and we struggle through.  When he get's the "flu" I tell him welcome to my world and so he understands how I feel to an extent.  You have to let you partner know what your feeling when your feeling it, if he or she doesn't understand where you are coming from they can't help you get where your going.  When my kids were young I used my illness to education all the children in our school district about MS and disability awareness, which means I went to all four (4) elementary schools in the district and the middle school and high school and spent "disability awareness" day with all of the students.  This helped my children learn more about the illness as well as all the children they had as friends.  I had a policeman pull me over and ask me why I had a handicapped tag on my vehicle, I showed him my identification card given to me by the MS Society and he said "you don't look sick" I kindly replied "you don't look stupid, so I guess that makes us even".  I would not trade my illness for his attitude any day of the week.  When I am having a bad moment, I still a quote that someone once said "build a bridge and get over it", life goes on.  I have my wheelchair when I need it, I have my electric wheelchair when I need it and I have my legs when I have my legs.  Some days I feel like doggy pooh and some days I feel like doggy pooh that has been stepped in, but ya know what, nothing stops for me and nothing changes for me so I have learned to get over it.  Just take one moment at a time and do what you can when you can.  I used to host MS chats on AOL till they did away with hosting, so I did away with AOL.  Now I spend my days taking care of my grandchildren and me and my husband spends his time working and taking care of me too.  Get rid of the negative and only focus on the positive and you will learn to "live" with it.  I give sympathy when I feel it's needed and don't when I don't.  I have MS it does not have me!!!!  Laugh loudly, love strong and go on as long as you can go then just take one more step forward and you will be over that bridge for the moment until the next one comes along.

 

Becki M.

 
May 30, 2007, 3:46 pm CDT

get in with support and love . . . or get gone - a few thoughts

 My heart aches for this woman dx w/MS and her husband . . . I wonder if he is not able to accept her illness and truly "be there" for her through this trial, if it wouldn't be better for him to just leave?

My Mom had MS; she was a courageous woman and managed to maintain a sense of humor and personal dignity in spite of decades with MS and 20+ years in a health care facility. She has departed this difficult plane of existance and I am thankful that she is no longer in pain and suffering, tho' I miss her terribly.

My Mom was the emotional glue that held my somewhat disfunctional family together and over the course of her illness, I truly believe that MS contributed significantly to the destruction of our family life. I feel that my Father disappeared further in to alcohol to mitigate his pain. I felt that I had to take on a role of "parent" long before I was out of my teens and beyond - this situation changed not just my life - it changed who I am. My siblings were drastically affected too in many ways that continue to this day.

I often wonder how life would have been, if there had been more support . . more knowledge of the psychological effects of chronic medical conditions on family dynamics . . . and more acceptance on my Father's part to help our family through this extremely difficult situation. Sometimes I feel that we would have been better off without him, and that my Mum would have fared better without the stress of his lack of acceptance and support. Stress is a real, contributing factor in MS and something that I truly believe contributed to the progression of the condition in my Mum.

MS is a horrible, unpredictable, devastating condition and if this husband thinks it is hard now - he has NO idea how difficult it can become. It is horrifying and painful to watch someone you love deteriorate in small increments over an extended period of time, as is typically the course of MS. It takes a Herculean effort to "stay the course" in a relationship with someone who has MS - a challenge for anyone to be sure. If this husband isn't up for the "in sickness and health" part of traditional marriage vows, perhaps he is better gone now, rather than later, to allow this woman to get on with the task of learning to cope with MS.

What do you think?




 
May 30, 2007, 3:47 pm CDT

My wife has MS

 I missed the show, unfortunately.

My wife has had relapsing/remitting MS since before I met her.  I don't think anyone knows what it is like to be the well spouse until you've walked a few years in my shoes.  Intellectually, I understand the disease and keep up on the research, etc.  But emotionally, life as a caretaker is  extremely stressful. 

I work out of our home as a management consultant.  This  is both a blessing and a curse, depending on the day.  I am able to take care of her  on bad days  if  I'm not off consulting.  I am also able to adjust my schedule to take her to various doctors' and other kinds of appointments (she doesn't drive). 

At the same time, I am also trying to actually get work done out of my home.  I have clients to call, marketing to do, books and articles to write.  As the well spouse, I also do all the chores,  shopping, cleaning, cooking, etc.  I am constantly struggling to get my own needs met and to take care of myself so that I can take care of her.  It isn't easy.

Even though I intellectually understand the disease and its incapacitating fatigue, I still get resentful and angry.  In spite of my efforts to do better, I am a far cry of endlessly patient and understanding.  I end up feeling more like a servant than a husband.  I love my wife and never think of leaving yet I don't know how to cope with the situation sometimes and there are days I can be a real jerk.

Yet there are lessons learned along the way.  People take it for granted that they get to get up in the morning, get in an early run, and then go to work.  They don't know what it is like to be so fatigued that it is hard to do anything.  They don't know what it is like to have to avoid heat from fever, sun, exercise, or even a hottub for fear of kicking off psuedo attacks of MS symptoms.  They don't know what it is like to lose sight in one eye without any assurance it will come back.

In spite of all the challenges, I have learned to pay more attention to so many things I get to do that I used to take for granted.  I am more grateful for the simpler, often ignored pleasures of life like driving to an appointment throught the Connecticut hills or watching the snow fall in winter. 

I do, however, worry about the unrelenting stress and what I need to do to make sure I am around for a long time to take care of her.  And,  in spite of all  my resolutions to be more patient and understanding, I get frustrated, angry, resentful.  I just don't know how to deal with this situation gracefully and as lovingly as I would like.  I feel a little like I am living under house arrest.  I am not sick and yet my life is much like that of a sick person because I am so restricted in what I can do.  So try not to be too harsh in judging the person who stands beside the bed.  My life isn't easy and, with the passing of years, it isn't getting any easier.   I just wish I could deal with my own frustrations in a more productive way and not take them out on her.  I chose her and continue to choose her each day…but I still lose it every now and then.  If there are any caretakers out there who'd like to share your experiences and how you cope, I'd love to hear from you.

I'd like to see Dr. Phil do a show on caretaking for spouses.  I need some tools that will help me be more patient and loving and still feel like I have a life of my own. 

Doing the best I can, Bob
 
May 30, 2007, 3:50 pm CDT

Living with illness.....

I watch Dr. Phil everyday (thanks TIVO...haha), and today hit me at home...that is for sure.  I am 26 years old, and have been living with an auto-immune condition called Sjogren's Syndrome (I was diagnosed when I was 17).  Anyone interested, please visit this AWESOME website: http://www.niams.nih.gov/hi/topics/sjogrens/index.htm

 

Anyway-I can understand the frustration that the guy who has the wife with MS must have, but I couldn't agree with Dr. Phil more when he said (in not so many words) ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING!!!  This is SOOOOO true for both the healthy spouse, and the spouse that is living with the illness.  My fiancee is soon going to be the "healthy spouse (when he marrys me...lol)", and I will be the one living with the illness.  Though...we will BOTH be "living" with this illness.  I have Sjogren's, Sjogren's doesn't have me...that is one of my favorite sayings!!!! :) :)  My fiancee knew I had Sjogren's about 1 week into our relationship and he still wants to marry me (a year and a half later)!!!!  It's the best feeling ever!!!! :)  I know he was concerned about me being sick and wondering what could happen in the future, but I tell him what I tell SO many other people..."you or I could die in a car accident tomorrow, and it would have nothing to do with me having Sjogren's"...why NOT live life and take chances?!  It took about 2 seconds for him to see my point and embrace it so beautifully!!! :)  My fiancee IS taking me in "sickness and in health, for better or for worse, in rich and poor, til death do us part".  And he is SO supportive, and that makes all the difference in living with Sjogrens. :)

 

I hope and pray for this couple on today's show, and for all couples (and even singles that are either healthy) that might be reading this post....PLEASE don't judge others who are sick (especially those who are SO sick and don't look sick...I'll tell you right now, I look healthy as a horse!!!!!).  I've been judged all throughout high school and even college (and even after college) with people "not believing me", or thinking that I'm faking my illness, etc etc., and that is way more difficult than living with the disease it'sself.  And for those who are going through some form of illness (chronic, terminal, whatever it might be), DO NOT let people get you down about your illness, and tell you that you are faking it (or whatever).  ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING!!! :) :)  Maybe educate people, too! ;)  Remember that!  Sure, I will guarentee you will have bad days, but deal with them the best you can and remember that a good day is just around the corner!! :)

 

Take care, all and hope you have a GREAT day!!!!!!!!!!!! :)  And, remember to SMILE! :)

 

Amanda

 
May 30, 2007, 3:51 pm CDT

not a big deal?

Quote From: staceynoelle

Today's show made me mad.
I have been diagnosed with mulitple sclerosis for at least 5  years now. I was 23 when I first found out.
MS is not a big deal. - Its not necessarily progressive. The husband was being completely fatalistic about the diease and really  - thats not fair.
Out of all neurological dieases, MS Is pretty much the easist to deal with.
I have to deal with no feeling in my left hand.

Dont get me wrong - its not always easy. I lost total control over my right side of my body. MS isnt fun but there is hope.

I dont tell people about my illness unless they ask.

no...MS is not a big deal....it is a HUGE deal.  I am glad you are doing so well.  My first 5 years were pretty uneventful as well.  I am currently in year 18.  You learn to cope....and to deal with life...you make changes......it is certainly not a death sentence for most of us.  Each individual experience will be different.  No two MS patients are alike. 
 
May 30, 2007, 3:51 pm CDT

MS mom

 My mother had MS, I was her 3rd child born when she was 42. I ended up in foster care but think the family would've survivedifwecould'veexpressed our frustations. She was a quadriplegic by thetimeI was 7.  It was trying for a child to have to scratch hernose,feed her and help with her personal needs.

When I feltsad about her illness, it was because she'd been a concert violinist& lost all those years of work, not because she wasn't there togive me a bath or whatever. Having to help with family chores made mefeel a needed part of the family.

I don't know why my dad beatus when we expressed anything negative about taking care of her. He'dtell us we should be glad we even had a mother. I'm guessing that hedidn't want to face his own frustations.He was 50 whenI was born - 3liitle kids and asick wife had to be extreme stress.Nothing justifiesabuse but that's about as great a pressure cooker as one can have.

Ileft the home at age 12 and felt from that time  that being ableto talk about it would've made all the difference. Want to encourage MSmoms and dads to teach their kids safe ways to share or vent. My fosterparents did that for me, as well as a direct relationship with God thatis what sustained me through the transition.

God bless


 
May 30, 2007, 3:55 pm CDT

Left behind...

I had no idea what today's show was about when it came on. Was I ever floored when it Hit so close to Home. My Common-Law Partner of 5yrs. has just asked me & my 3 special needs boys to move out of the house. I have Fybromialgia and Bipolar II of the Depressive Type. He has more compassion for the fellow he barley knows that has Lupus than he does for me. It does not seem to matter how many Dr. reports I have stating my mantal and physical Abilities & Disabilities he still doesn't "Get" it. Also my 3 Son's ALL have Tourette's Syndrome, and variouse forms/levels of ADHD/ADD and all take Medication and the Youngest has Very Very Difficult Behaviour. He has asked us to leave the home ( I have no job and no income) because he can't take the Boy's behaviour anymore and the Financial Strain, as I can't work we have amassed "Debt" that he can't handle.  My oldest who just turned 13 has already spent a Month in the BC Childrens Hospital In-Patient Program to try and fine tune his med's and diagnosies. My youngest 9yrs old is now on the wait list to go to the same program, as it seems that nothing we do ever works.

My Family has fallen apart, my life is once again a Train Wreck and my kids are "lossing" the "Dad" that has raised them for longer then their own Father. How does a person who loves you kick you and your kids out of the house when you have No Money and No Way of Supporting your self? All because he can't pay the line of credit off whith me here (which by the way he can't do with me gone either) and he can't deal with the boy's behaviour...that he loves.  And he waits till he has asked me to move out untill he goes and sees anyone to talk to.

I spent ALL  last week sleeping, and now I have to find a place to live in a small town that has nowwhere to rent that does not cost an arm and a leg.

I hope that this womans husband can stay with her, it is such a terrible feeling to know someone loves you but is leaving you because they can't understand that you have an illness that they can't understand because it is invisible, and untangible. I wish lots of luck to this Family.

Mariah

 
May 30, 2007, 3:56 pm CDT

One more day

 My youngest daughter has not spoken to me since August 2005, her choice not mine. I expressed my opinion that day for the first time in her life over the major life changes she was planning and what I consider to be changes she will one day regret. Fact is she was having a nervous breakdown that was not properly diagnosed but she did get depression medication.  I hear she is doing better now.  My counselor told me I have to respect her silence because she is over 18 and I have but it is hard.  I do send her an email every 3 months but don't get a reply (don't expect to).  Hearing the interview between Dr. Phil and Mitch Albom about the book "For One More Day" makes me wonder how she will be when there are no more days left to spend with those who hold her dear and if she will miss me.  Wish she would get a copy of this book in the mail but I don't have her new address.  What I would give for just one hour of her time to tell her how much I love her and miss her conversations and company.  I understand there are many parents in similar situations with children (or other relatives) who have cut them out of their lives.  It doesn't make the pain less, it only lets me know I am not alone.  Life has so little time.
 
May 30, 2007, 3:58 pm CDT

love your quote!

Quote From: menotsick

I began my battle with MS (6) six months after I got married.  When the doctor said it was MS I told my husband "Either your in it for the long hall, or bail out now".  Well we have been married for 22 years now.  The MS brought out the best man in him possible.  I do what I can when I can nothing more and nothing less.  I have my moments and sit on my "pitty potty" then I get off of it and start all over again.  I don't have MS  "we" do.  When things get tough we work it out together.  It's our illness and we struggle through.  When he get's the "flu" I tell him welcome to my world and so he understands how I feel to an extent.  You have to let you partner know what your feeling when your feeling it, if he or she doesn't understand where you are coming from they can't help you get where your going.  When my kids were young I used my illness to education all the children in our school district about MS and disability awareness, which means I went to all four (4) elementary schools in the district and the middle school and high school and spent "disability awareness" day with all of the students.  This helped my children learn more about the illness as well as all the children they had as friends.  I had a policeman pull me over and ask me why I had a handicapped tag on my vehicle, I showed him my identification card given to me by the MS Society and he said "you don't look sick" I kindly replied "you don't look stupid, so I guess that makes us even".  I would not trade my illness for his attitude any day of the week.  When I am having a bad moment, I still a quote that someone once said "build a bridge and get over it", life goes on.  I have my wheelchair when I need it, I have my electric wheelchair when I need it and I have my legs when I have my legs.  Some days I feel like doggy pooh and some days I feel like doggy pooh that has been stepped in, but ya know what, nothing stops for me and nothing changes for me so I have learned to get over it.  Just take one moment at a time and do what you can when you can.  I used to host MS chats on AOL till they did away with hosting, so I did away with AOL.  Now I spend my days taking care of my grandchildren and me and my husband spends his time working and taking care of me too.  Get rid of the negative and only focus on the positive and you will learn to "live" with it.  I give sympathy when I feel it's needed and don't when I don't.  I have MS it does not have me!!!!  Laugh loudly, love strong and go on as long as you can go then just take one more step forward and you will be over that bridge for the moment until the next one comes along.

 

Becki M.

 Hi, loved your reply to the police officer!  But that is so common for people to think that.  But, the reason I am replying to you is because I love your quote.. "build a bridge and get over it".. I think that's going to be my new motto!  Take good care.  :)
 
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