At my wits end.

Hi new on here. I need some advice from carers etc My partner has MS. Mobility issues, fatigue, numbness, pain. But the real problem is that he has become so angry and negative. He thinks that everyone is against him but when any services try to help he’s difficult and obstructive so the service kick him. Then it’s their fault. I’ve asked and asked for him to get some mental health support but he avoids that. He constantly criticises me for things I do that annoy him. Despite knowing that the things he picks on me for are actually due to a condition I have and I’m trying my absolute best. I do absolutely everything in the household now. I’m also working because he’s not able to. I’m trying to keep us afloat financially. I’m also dealing with our son who has a serious mental health condition. I’m also POA for my mum with advanced dementia. I’m also newly diagnosed with some health issues that cause me constant pain and affect my energy levels and concentration. He’s promised me so many times that he will get some help and stop battering me emotionally but it doesn’t last. I almost left just before Christmas and we had a talk and I said this behaviour was a deal breaker for me. But it’s starting creeping in again. He’s just smashed some of our property in a temper. I don’t know honestly what else I can do? We’ve been together for 30+ years and we are supposed to be a team. We’ve worked so hard to get close to being able to be mortgage free as our goal was always to ensure our son had a property to inherit. If we end our relationship that’s over. We will have to sell. I’m self employed so won’t be able to buy ever again. Neither will he. We have debts etc. but his behaviour is damaging my mental health and worse I know these fights he starts causes my son to spiral. What if anything else can I do to help him to get some help?

1 Like

Hi there,
I am new the forum as I’m in an almost identical position to you.

My partner has SPMS and has for almost 25 years. We met a few years ago after I came from a marriage.

He has changed so much.

I’m ashamed to say, I am struggling so much to be exposed to his ignorance each day.

My son lost his maternal father last year, and heavily sees him as a dad.

My emotions are getting the better of me. I’ve begged him to get help and support as I’m struggling to handle everything, my son has a disability too.

We can’t live together at the moment due to how bad things are.

He thinks I don’t like him and criticise him, I don’t, I’m losing my patience because he switches off then turns everything around on me.

I feel so alone at times.

I love him so much but it does feel like I’m alone.

I’m sorry I’m not much help, I just wanted to let you know, I understand what you are going through.

I’m sorry you are facing all of this, if only we could get through to them.

Hello. I am someone with MS ( not a carer) which I’ve had for 17 years but I hope the following is of some help.

Obviously I don’t know what your relationship was like pre MS so I don’t know if some of what you are now experiencing is a magnification of pre existing aspects of your relationship. I know from personal experience however that MS does have an impact on mood etc. Many with MS suffer from depression and anxiety- brought on simply by the horrors of knowing that you have an untreatable condition that might well take you to a life in a wheelchair or worse, and/or caused by the MS directly affecting that part of your brain that controls emotions etc.

Anxiety etc can make people a bit ratty, feel unable to cope, anxious , frustrated and short tempered or similar. Is it possible that your partner is depressed/ suffering from anxiety and would it be worth trying to get him to see his GP for this? ( I can get depressed and take Citalopram - in low dose but I think he helps keep the anxiety away).

In general, and if you have MS than getting yourself stressed, angry etc just isn’t good - sort of inflames the immune systems and ultimately can make your MS worse. It certainly doesn’t help. I sort of follow a regime of eating healthily ( trying to eat anti inflammatory foods ) and relaxation/ meditation. I know some guys would run a mile at the thought of ‘meditation’ but I do think that some relaxation exercises etc could be of great help to your partner and consequently to the relationship and to you. I’ve no idea what if any relaxation exercises would suit your partner ( I use a CD that I got from a weeks ‘Tai Chi and meditation’ holiday but there are loads of things on the web etc).

More generally have you contacted the MS Society helpline for advice and help in terms of getting support for yourself? Probably worth doing.

Again more generally, have a look at the website of Overcoming MS - run by an Australian professor of medicine it suggests ways of helping to keep MS under some control including through diet, exercise and relaxation. It’s not offering a quack cure but suggests things that you can do in addition to taking whatever disease modifying treatment you are on. I get the impression that your partner is floundering, sinking and lashing out at the nearest thing which happens to be you. The Overcoming MS stuff does at least provide the MS sufferer with some feeling that there are things you can do to help yourself and ( sort of) learn to live with MS - and with luck also enjoy life.

I do hope that there is something in the above that is helpful to you and please don’t hesitate to ask any questions you want .

All the best

I’m the one with MS in this house, so I’ll take the liberty of mentioning the obvious but unmentionable (by healthy people) fact that sickness and disability are an unmitigated pain in the arse for everyone, not just the sick and disabled person. But another thing that’s true (or so it seems to me) is that the a sick and disabled partner needs to do his or her best to be a good companion and a supportive partner despite everything.

Now, many of us, me included have been a self-centred old grump more often than we care to think about. Nothing is going to turn one of life’s depressives into a disabled-but-sunny Pollyanna.

Any yet. There’s just something about making the effort, isn’t there? And acknowledging the other person’s efforts. Resisting the temptation to become Her/His Majesty the Invalid. Working as a team, even if one person is necessarily having to do much of the heavy lifting. Helping each other through, sharing a smile, encouraging, comforting. If that is no longer possible, I’m not sure there’s much left worth saving. But that’s easy to say from outside.


Just to add that yes I agree with Alison. It is hard having MS and sometimes I feel frustrated and angry but I know that a) feeling like that is not good and possibly very bad for me and b) it’s not going to help my wife and our relationship ( and from a purely self interested point of view - an unhappy partner is not going to be as much help to me as a happy one).

So yes, both partners need to work together and be as good and supportive companions to each other as can be.


Hi thanks for the reply and I’m sorry you are struggling with this too. Ive asked for support for myself from GP etc and mental health team I hope you have too. But the bottom line is if they won’t see that it’s their problem how are we supposed to stay? My husband won’t manage on his own in any way. If I leave we lose everything we’ve built for 30 years. My son is then burdened with more pressure because he will have financial worries, housing etc etc all added to his plate that is already full!!

Thank you for your reply. I’ve literally tried all of those things or suggested he tries them. Everyone in the family has also tried to suggest ways that he can help himself to feel better. I’ve organised a healthy diet, supplements, bought books, sent him links to research, contacted the MS society even called the mental health team and got him referred for help. I’ve done all his benefit appointments and paperwork for him. He literally doesn’t have to do anything. The only thing I’ve asked him to do is to take the support that’s offered and to stop treating me like I’m the enemy. I’m doing my absolute best every single day whilst battling Rheumatoid arthritis, severe ADHD, caring for our son who is also ill and working full time. But nothing I do is good enough. I’m in pain every day my condition is also long term and will get worse. But I don’t take it out on him!

1 Like

Really sorry to hear of all your troubles. I am wondering what others who have replied think about respite care?

I suppose the problem could be that in his mind your partner decides to take this as a sign that you are against him but on the other hand having people in to assess your needs and his might be enough to make him realise that - well basically he needs to consider you and your needs. Getting some ‘neutral’ professional to give a dispassionate assessment of the whole situation and your needs might hold up a mirror to your partner- plus you might get support with caring for him especially if you explain the situation and the damaging/draining impact it’s having on you.

If at the end of the day you have clearly done all you can to support your partner and it comes to nothing because he won’t play his part then get some advice on finances , ownership of the house , your son etc . I can understand that this would feel like a horrible and hard step to take but I guess the bottom line is if caring for your partner is destroying you then you won’t be able to help yourself, your son or partner.

My best wishes to you


This is so difficult. I think that the only option is to sit down with him, when things are as best as they are going to get, and point out to him that he’s very close to having to cope with this on his own. At the end of the day he has to be responsible for his own health, or at least take some responsibility. I care for my husband, but its a bit different to you as we are both retired so dont have the additional pressure of work etc. Having said that things are difficult enough. To be fair my husband is grateful for all that I do but this isn’t the retirement we had imagined. I see that its been a while since you posted, how are things now?

1 Like

Things are the same. He refuses to speak to me for days on end because I treat him so badly but gladly eats the food I cook and wears the clothes I wash, dry and put away for him. He also told me that I have done nothing for him since his diagnosis this was when I was stood cutting his hair for him after I’d been on my feet all day. At this point I asked him if he joking and told him to cut his own hair. This resulted in the hair clippers being smashed on the floor and again not being spoken to for a week.
I’ve tried talking to him literally hundreds of times and every time he turns it round to deflect from him. We go round and round in circles. I know he’s ill but I can’t do anymore. I don’t think he’s cognitively fit either but don’t know how to do anything about that. I’m out of options and energy to fight for this anymore.

I am very sorry to hear that you’re still in such difficulty. I wish life were a little easier. Whatever you decide to do, I hope it heads you toward a place that is less awful than where you are now. It’s so tough when there are no non-painful solutions.

Sorry if this sounds blunt but I think if it was me I would be ‘laying down the law’ a bit and amongst other things, tell him that I’m getting the council services in to asses his needs and my needs. If he was to put up arguments I would just ignore him and state ‘I need help’.

Sorry if this sounds blunt but I’m saying the above as someone with MS (17 years) and very much of the view that if couple are to get through any serious health problem then both have to work together. Also and as the truism goes, to be of most help to others you must also care for yourself


Thats pretty much what ive done and 4 months later dtopl waitfor LA needs assessment. Its just shocking. There really is no help.
My husband has all the personality traits of a narcissus and is bever grateful or even agreeable and i like many carers do everything to make his snd our life functional.
Won’t or can’t discuss anything and sees every conversation as sn accusation or argument. Wont take responsibility to do the right snd sensible thing to give himself the best opportunity to be healthy and well as possible. Criticises everything. Nothing is any good and hes do hard done by.
Neurologist has recently intimated he has behaviour likened to and is possibly alzheimers.

He himself has started questioning whether he has dementia now but has done nothing about seeing anyone about that. His behaviour is becoming more and more abusive and unacceptable. He’s not the only one with a long term health condition either. I have 3 significant conditions that cause me so many difficulties, not to mention I’ve been getting my ass kicked by menopause for the last 10 years. I’m in pain all the time but I have no option but to just try and get through every day because we have a son and pets to look after plus bills have to be paid somehow. Suicide threats are now being thrown around regularly along with threats to ensure all our money being wasted and given to charity so our son gets nothing. It’s just getting to the point where I’m worrying whether I’m safe to be at home anymore. I honestly can’t predict what he’s going to do next. This is not living. Carers need to be better supported and looked after. All I’ve been offered after an assessment is 25 hours over the next year where someone will come and sit with him while I go out!??? WTF? How does that help me? It’s useless. They won’t help with anything around the house and I’m already out working every day. So they’ll pay a care company like £30 an hour, the carer will get like £10 if they’re lucky and that’ll be to sit in my house for an hour. Yet I asked if they could fund a cleaner for an hour a fortnight instead and no they can’t use the money for that! They can’t give me the equivalent money so I can get the washing done for me to save me time? Or a gardener or literally anything that would be useful to me as the carer. I can go to the carers centre though and have a cuppa and moan that’s funded :joy: fucks sake I have friends for that. Honestly this system is broken.

1 Like

This sounds identical to my partner too. Everything turns into a major criticism or argument.

He can’t see the wood for trees. Heartbreaking, I’m so sorry.