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I can mend everything but this.. i need a little help

Hi.. I'm new. My name's Carl. I don't have PNI but my girlfriend does. If you're on here then well done you.. I don't mean that to sound patronising but I know doing this isn't easy and probably hasn't for any of you... That's why I'm here instead of my partner. I need help. Not with helping her though. I know that sounds strange but I can't help her. You guys may when she takes the step to come here. And doctors can but I can't.. I need help to just be there. Helping is causing problems. I need help to stop helping. She's my world and I'd give my life for her but that has unfortunate side effects. When she's tired I carry her. To bed... to the bathroom... everywhere. When she's poorly I sit her up and feed her home made chicken soup. And I know what it's like to have a cold and to be worn out so I know what I can do for her but right now there's nothing I can do. She cant feel anything. She doesn't even love me. Well she does but she doesn't seem to have the card to draw it from the bank. She doesn't respond to anything except with dismissive muttering. I'll wrap it up before it turns to a novel bit the background is we have 2 children 16wks and 20mnths. Between the two was a miscarriage. My only her 5th and 6th. 4 to previous 1 of whom passed at 16mnth 17 yrs ago. Eldest daughter estranged due to pre eclampsia and trauma after. If somebody here has any understanding I'd love to here from you. Please. I just want to know what you think I should do. Or not do. Thanks x

1 Reply

Hello Carl

Pni is am extremely cruel and complex illness which affects not only the sufferer but also their nearest and dearest. It sounds as if you're struggling also. I applaud your efforts to help your girlfriend and also appreciate how hard and frustrating the whole illness can be when you just don't know/can't help either.

My first question to you is whether your gf is getting any help and if so what sort of form is this in? She sounds quite unwell and it's great she has support from you. Is it counselling, medication? How long has she had this illness? I can see her life experiences have been very difficult all of which can be a trigger for this illness. You mentioned that she doesn't love you at the moment - try not to be disheartened by this (I know that's so hard) as PNI, meds can distort your feelings for everything . Hopefully, as she starts to recover these feelings that were so normal previously, will return.

I would say it's very important to look after yourself, otherwise her pni will have negative effect on you. Is it possible for you to have a night out with friends, pursue a hobby even if infrequently. Also do talk to your friends and family about how you're coping - this can be very tough especially for men - but offloading and having someone to listen to you can really make a difference. also try doing a bit of exercise if you don't as that can give you a natural lift especially when life is tough.

I mentioned the frustration you must feel as it's often so hard to know what to do to help. It sounds like you're doing all the right things - supporting her with tasks, maybe just let her talk, certainly undertaking practical things can help massively as I know when I had pni I literally could do nothing yet the frustration of seeing there was so much to do really depressed me further and caused me huge anxiety. If she has started medication it's quite normal to feel worse before you feel better, again keeping an eye on gf, reassuring her that you love her and that she will be ok can go along way as this is what I needed at the time.

there is a men's section on in 'our forum' section - perhaps take a look there as other men's experiences of pni.


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