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Offline ckelley116

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Anxiety about the health of others
« on: August 23, 2014, 07:35:28 PM »
Just wondering - does anyone here not just suffer anxiety about their own health, but that of others? My big fear, aside from myself, is for my husband. He doesn't eat a very healthy diet and he's practically completely sedentary when he's not at work (and even when he is at work, he's a DJ and just sits around more tapping on his laptop). He just doesn't care about his own health. He's a devout Christian and claims that God will take care of him. Well, sorry, but I'm an agnostic atheist. That just doesn't fly with me.

My anxiety over his health started almost exactly a year ago, when he was having sporadic numbness in his chest and leg, both on the left side, both lasting for about 5 minutes at a time. I stupidly Googled, remembered him talking about getting a temporary blind spot a few years before, and concluded he of course had MS. I begged him for a month to see a doctor and he refused. Finally one of our friends talked him into going. I don't know what the guy said to convince him, but it worked, so whatever. I was so nervous I took the day off of work and went to the doctor with him, although I stayed in the waiting room when he went in. They concluded he had arthritis and gave him some daily exercises to stretch his spine, which he did maybe twice. But I was comforted that the doctor didn't seem to think he needed an MRI - until a few months later when he confessed the doctor barely even mentioned the numbness, which was the reason he made the appointment in the first place. Cue HA. I still sometimes start freaking out that he has it, but told him NOT to tell me when he was feeling weird unless he wanted me to start harassing him about the doctor again. As he doesn't seem any worse now than he was last year, I'm usually able to push it to the back of my mind.

Then, two weeks ago, he got what we figured was probably salmonella. He woke on a Thursday with raging diarrhea and a fever that lasted the entire day. On Friday, he felt better. Saturday, it seemed to come back along with really bad bloating, and then Sunday he felt fine.  He has a sensitive stomach and gets diarrhea fairly often, but he kept saying over and over how he NEVER had food poisoning last so long. Well, salmonella can last up to a week. I just kept telling myself that, and managed to keep calm and focus on my own brain tumor.

Now, tonight, we got Chinese food for dinner and he ate an ENTIRE dinner combo of General Tso's chicken, pork fried rice and an egg roll. (Told you he doesn't have the best diet.) Not long after he finished eating, he had diarrhea. Then he says "I ate something bad again. I can tell." I tried telling him that eating an entire order of Chinese food was probably a bad idea and he likely consumed a week's worth of sodium and that's why he's bloated. He's burping and whining about how he wants to throw up, and of course, in the back of my mind, I'm screaming "Colon cancer! Colon cancer!"

Although of course I love my husband and don't want to lose him, I think a lot of my fear stems from the fact that he a) refuses to see doctors, so if something was wrong with him, we wouldn't find out until it was way far gone, and b) refuses to get real health insurance because one of his "news channels" said that Obamacare was going to force women to have abortions and then we were all going to get chips implanted in us. (Sorry, I don't want to make this political, but those are his real reasons. He's told me). Instead he joined up with something called Christan Healthcare Ministries, which is a cost-sharing program. Basically he gets medical procedures done, tries to bargain with the provider for a lower bill, then sends the bill to this ministry, who decides if they feel like helping with it or not. If they don't, we're stuck with a huge bill, and we are not rich people. And heaven forbid he has something that requires continuous treatment. We'd be screwed.

Anyone else worry just as much about their loved ones as they do about themselves? I wish I could go back to being the person who would look at my husband and say "you just ate 14 lbs of Chinese food; of course you feel sick, you big pig" instead of mentally diagnosing him with colon or stomach cancer or something! Maybe one day I will be that person again - I'm going to really try working on it. But for now, it's hard enough trying not to worry about myself, but throwing another person into the mix...sheesh. Not fun.
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Offline Slangevar

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2014, 08:02:45 PM »
If I'm not worrying about myself, I'm worrying about my husband or sister. :-)
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Offline rileybug

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2014, 08:09:12 PM »
I never worry about my husband or daughter(shes a doc and worry about her self)  Only have HA about myself.
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Offline nervousnell

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2014, 09:30:07 PM »
Oh, all the time. I worry about my husband and my son almost as much as myself.
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Offline Smitten

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2014, 09:42:53 PM »
I think my HA sometimes stems from my worry for others - if that makes sense?? I worry so much about my son and husband that it seems like I always get something about myself to worry about not long after their health issues.
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Offline ckelley116

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2014, 07:48:41 AM »
Ok, good - I seem to be normal :) I don't worry about my family as much because I come from pretty strong stock. My dad's double-bypass was the worst thing any of us have ever been through, and it was mostly a result of his own terrible diet (pizza and cheesesteaks several times a week, to the point where the guy at the pizza place down the street knew his voice on the phone). And my sister is the most health-conscious person I know. Of course I know things happen even to health-conscious people, but for some reason I just don't worry. But my husband is just so careless about his health and everything related to it...he's 44, so I know he's getting to the age where things start "popping up". The possibilities are just too endless, and too scary.
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Offline JER2911

  • Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2014, 09:43:00 AM »
I worry about my kids and husband all the time.  I try not to show it to my kids.  But, if they say "I have a belly ache, head ache, or any ache"... In my head I'm already going over the list of things I pray that it's not...  But, to them I just say, "it will be okay, you'll feel better soon,"...unless it's obviously something that needs to be dealt with right then.  I do not want them to be like me.  My five year old already shows symptoms of HA and I'm trying to stop it.

As for you husband saying "God will take care of me".  I'm a devout Christian too.  But, I do know that God expects us to do our part.  You body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and as such, should be treated with respect. 1 Cor 6:19.

Also, it would be akin to saying, "If I jump off this mountain, God will take care of me and I won't get hurt".  Jesus is very clear on this matter in:  Matthew 4:9-12

Maybe you could ask him to read those and it will help him realize that he should do his part to be healthy.



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Matthew 6:27  Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

Offline raggamuffin

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2014, 10:07:43 AM »
When you worry about everything in your life it's all too common to worry about others too.

Ed
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Offline mollyfin

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2014, 11:53:15 AM »
Your husband would drive me absolutely crazy.   :laugh3:  "I feel sick when I do this!"  "So...stop doing that?"  "NO!!!!!"   :laugh3:  I admit though sometimes I eat things I know will make me feel sick because they taste so good...

And that "insurance" program sounds really horrible/useless.  You'd think he'd work harder to be healthy if that's his only backup! 

I worry about my mom and my girlfriend a lot.  My mom's getting on in years and my girlfriend's health is a little fragile - she gets sick a lot. 
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Offline chunkymonkey

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2014, 12:24:52 PM »
I worry about my mom. There was a time when she was passing blood in her stool and she was relaxed about it but i was freaking out. Luckily, she doesnt get it anymore. My mom is my best friend so losing her is my biggest worry
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Offline ckelley116

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2014, 04:14:29 PM »
I worry about my kids and husband all the time.  I try not to show it to my kids.  But, if they say "I have a belly ache, head ache, or any ache"... In my head I'm already going over the list of things I pray that it's not...  But, to them I just say, "it will be okay, you'll feel better soon,"...unless it's obviously something that needs to be dealt with right then.  I do not want them to be like me.  My five year old already shows symptoms of HA and I'm trying to stop it.

As for you husband saying "God will take care of me".  I'm a devout Christian too.  But, I do know that God expects us to do our part.  You body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and as such, should be treated with respect. 1 Cor 6:19.

Also, it would be akin to saying, "If I jump off this mountain, God will take care of me and I won't get hurt".  Jesus is very clear on this matter in:  Matthew 4:9-12

Maybe you could ask him to read those and it will help him realize that he should do his part to be healthy.

Thanks, Jer. I have mentioned this to him before but didn't know the specific passages that referenced it. My argument was "God gave you a body, don't you owe it to him to take care of it while you've got it?" He agreed and was really good for about a month, then slipped right back, unfortunately. And it's very strange that he's like that when his mom, who doesn't own a book without "Jesus" in the title and has so many crosses in her house it's like visiting Carrie White's mom, goes for regular colonoscopies and all the other stuff grown-ups are supposed to do.

I'm sorry about your little one! Hopefully it's just a phase, and s/he will grow out of it.

@Mollyfin, yeah, he drives me crazy! Sure we all eat stuff that we know is bad because it tastes good (I'll admit - as he was wolfing down his General Tso's, I was housing a cheesesteak - one of the 2-3 I allow myself per year) but if I got sick, I'd say "Okay, not eating THAT again!" and I wouldn't complain because I'd know it was my own fault I felt like crap. And people don't understand why I don't want children  :laugh3: I imagine it's hard watching your parents get old. Mine are in their mid-60s, but they're so young at heart it's difficult to imagine them actually getting old. I'm sure it'll be a rude awakening. Hang in there  :happy0062:

@chunkymonkey, glad your mom is okay!
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Offline Sunlover

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Re: Anxiety about the health of others
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2014, 05:09:34 PM »
I too worry about my husband and daughter but I tend to see things more rationally with them.   However if one of them said, "I think I'm losing weight" and they weren't trying I start freaking out (not that I tell them, but casually I say something about how they are eating less to see if they ARE - 9 out of 10 they then recall eating less than normal "lately"!  If it's something like a headache I don't think brain tumor (though I would for ME) I think more rationally - "Oh it's his sinuses"
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