This is really hard and everyone will be different.
When my wife was first diagnosed we were just friends. I was there to comfort her, then we got closer, we became a couple then we got married. We read all we could around MS, but back in the mid 90’s there was very little information around, the internet was still new, so whilst we were scared we didn’t really know what to expect so just got on with it.
We’ve been together 24 years, married 22. Her MS has got very bad recently and she is now quite advanced. Only her right arm really works, the other limbs don’t do much except spasm. eating is getting difficult etc etc etc. I’m having to give up work to be a full time carer. Our once outgoing, adventurous life has been turned upside down and we have to plan to the nth degree even before going to the shops.
We do talk, and we have discussed whether if I knew back at the start, what I know now, would I have just stayed friends and not taken our relationship further. And it’s a hard one to answer. I didn’t choose to fall in love with my wife so I probably would still have gone down the same path. That doesn’t mean though that we both don’t look at what we’ve lost and continue to lose.
Unfortunately, how MS progresses does directly impact you and your partner, there is no denying that. Until my wife became really ill it might just be we’d leave the pub early, catch a cab to the train station rather than walk, or stay in a cooler house on blistering hot days. Now it means we wake up 3+ times each night for various reasons, have an emergency once a week, I do all house work, cooking, cleaning etc, I’ve given up work. How your partner will react to this, if you ever get very ill (which you may not of course, given the randomness of MS), you will only know when faced with it.
But let’s not shy away from this, this is scary. I know I’m going to lose my wife to MS as some stage. I’m seeing her get slowly more ill by the day, as this cruel illness takes her away from me bit by bit. Some days I scream in anger, some days cry with frustration. Some days I feel I’m already in mourning for the life we used to have and lost, and all our plans have been thrown away. What I will always be though is here by my wife’s side no she needs me the most; however much pain I’m in with all the lifting, however little sleep I get, however many friends I’ve lost contact with, all this is nothing compared to what my wife is going through.
This has turned into a brain dump - sorry. What I was trying to get to was, your partner might not want to lose his life too to MS. He may love you, but not be able to face this. Best to find out now whilst you are still well, than years later when you may need the support more.
Oh, and if you do decide to look somewhere else for love, make sure he has a strong back and arms as he may need them as some stage!