Should I just let go

My wife, who is disabled, does not feel safe in our house. I try but fail to make everything safe all the time. I offered to hire someone to help, but now she says she doesn’t want help, and that she is planning on leaving to a shelter, then ending our marriage. I don’t know how serious she is. Should I just let her go. I know I can’t force her to stay.

Well, you certainly can’t force her to stay. She may just be trying to exercise her independence…I can imagine that being an invalid would make one crave independence. The disability probably makes her feel very vulnerable, and she may actually (subconsciously) be looking for you to reassure her that she is still an independent, lovable person, even though she is pushing you away. Try hard to see the person you fell in love with… respect her freedom, but continue to be loving, encouraging…you will win her heart. I urge you to pray…Our loving God, in His Mercy, will help you.

Praying for you both,

Are you absolutely, completely tied to your current home? If not, perhaps you could talk about moving to a new home where she would feel more secure. I was in the market for a “vintage” home a couple years ago, and during my househunting was surprised how many cute older homes had been retrofitted to acoomodate alternately abled individuals.

This “leaving and going to a shelter” sounds somewhat like depression. In addition to her direct care for her disability, is she receiving any psychological therapy to compliment the medical/physical? The emotional side of living with a disability is very hard on some folks.

Prayers for you. I know it must be so very hard.

I will be praying for you both! I know our county has programs where a home-health nurse or therapist will come in to your home and give you advice on safety hazards for elderly or disabled residents. Perhaps something like that would help her objectively. But as others said, there is probably more to this than her surface complaints. Your marriage is important and so is your wife’s health. Do you best to uncover her unspoken needs and met them as best as you are able. Also check with your parish or diocese for activities that she can participate in to help lift her spirits and get her out of the house regularly.

She sounds depressed to me. Talk to her doctor, and he/she will refer her to someone who can help her. Depression is a clinical condition that can be treated either with meds or with cognitive therapy (sometimes both). Don’t let her go. If you let her go, she’ll still be depressed. Even though it seems unlikely at the moment, your wife will thank you someday for getting her the help she needs to recover from depression.

My daughter, a physical therapist, tells me that insurance will cover a lot of the home adaptations needed for disabilites. Check it out.

And there are homes built for the disabled, and they’re pretty nice for the abled, too! If you can afford it, check it out. Again, perhaps there is funding available for you to purchase such a home, either through insurance, or through some government program.

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