AnonymousJune 23, 2006 at 7:23 pm
Talked with my mom–the better she gets the more time she has to sit and think…and, even though she says it in a joking way, she thinks that no one will want to date her again.
Whether it’s because of the crooked pinkies, the muscle spazms or twitches, the hip scar from her recent bone removal surgery (growth due to GBS), trach scar or her using a walker or wheelchair, I know she is serious about the prospect of not being able to “meet” people.
My dad, her ex-husband, has been VERY supportive of my mom while in the hospital all this time. He has helped me with plane fare and been more than generous with his money in order for me to be able to stay with my mom. BUT. To add insult to injury, I recently had to tell my mom that my dad was going to have a baby with his longtime (and much, much younger) girlfriend. She took it pretty well; they’ve been divorced for awhile now, but it’s in situations like that that you tend to look at your own life and think about things. It’s not like she wants any more children (my sister and I are more than enough!!!), but I know having an intimate and meaningful relationship with someone is important for her.
Just wanted some inout from the group, good or bad, about your experiences in dating life post-GBS: I know I read one couple met on this forum, but it couldn’t be all that perfect, can it???
AnonymousJune 23, 2006 at 8:34 pm
It can be all that perfect or it can be a miserable nightmare. It all depends on perspective. If you think of dating as a way to interview someone for a meaningful commitment, then I think it can be pretty healthy. I think you should have expectations of learning about someone, they learn about you, and take things from there. A bad date is nothing more than learning there is one person out there that you are thankful to not be wasting any more time and energy on. Furthermore, if someone is so superficial that GBS and a few scars is going to chase them away, then does that sound like a person she should be with in the first place?
The thing that would concern me the most is the fact that your mother has such a long laundry list of things which are going to cause rejection. That tells me she probably needs a little more time before she is ready to start dating. She needs to accept herself, as she is before she tries to find someone else to share her life with.
I have come to realize that I really like people who have had GBS. There are a lot of important lessons one’s recovery can teach someone. People who have had GBS seem to be more mature and more focused on what is important, in my experience. There is some downside, but I think GBS builds character.
AnonymousJune 24, 2006 at 12:44 pm
Wow can I relate to this. I felt the same way after having gbs. I had some other things going on in my life too and just felt pretty rejected. After about a year nad a half I had accepted the fact that i would probably be alone the rest of my life and was very comfortable with that and kind of looking forward to all of the indepence. around that same time i ran across a guy i had went to high school with who was going thru a divorce and he was devastated. several of us decided to start talking to him and sending him cards and just trying to keep his morale up and help him see the light at the end of the tunnel. i had no intentions of dating or having a relationship with him. believe it or not we have been together almost a year now and he is absolutely wonderful. he doesn’t understand gbs hardly at all but he understands me and knows what i need to do to take care of myself and he makes sure i do it. i don’t know if this is something that will last forever but i do know that i will never worry about having someone in my life again because obviously if we keep a positive attitude and try to help others and love life then someone will see that and want to be part of it.
tell your mom it’s difficult to have an ex (I have one that lives two houses away from me with his wife) but we can survive. don’t look at what we don’t have but try to remember what we do.
take care and tell your mom she can talk to me if she wants to.
AnonymousJune 24, 2006 at 1:17 pm
For some it’s easy. Before GBS I was what some would call a ladies man, but since it’s been just downhill for me with woman. I don’t mean to ramble on about how bad everything is for me, just please here me out. The first bad luck I had since GBS is almost all my friends left my side while I was in the hospital. I guess you find out who your real friends are in these types of situations. It’s been almost 2 years post for me and have not found someone to share any time with. I just try and think that I have more important things to worry about before I find someone like get back to walking again. Just try and look at the bright side and it will come in time.
AnonymousJune 24, 2006 at 2:25 pm
I was almost fully recovered from GBS in Dec/04, and my girlfriend at the time was somewhat supportive, though we had only been dating a few months before I got sick and were somewhat serious already. We soon broke up and the girl I have been dating is closer to my age (I’m 33) and has a master’s in counseling. We never met until my life was pretty much back to normal, and even though I’ve often told her what I’ve been through, she doesn’t really seem to “get it”. It’s as if she thinks I once had a nasty case of the flu or something. She jokingly picks at me when I try to lift something that I could have easily moved before GBS, and calls me an “old man” when I just want to go home and sleep after a hard day at work. We enjoy each other’s company and have a rather normal (increasingly serious) relationship, but I seem to have slowly changed since GBS, and have a different outlook on life that she just cannot relate to. Life is just more serious for me now, and I don’t want to waste it doing things that I don’t really want to do. I’ve learned to take nothing for granted. Maybe I’m just being unfair expecting her to understand something she can’t without experiencing it. I guess I’m saying that the toughest part of dating is probably finding someone that understands what we’ve been through with GBS.
AnonymousJune 24, 2006 at 3:41 pm
I’m never bashful about asking questions on issues I want to know about. This subject covers married people too. As far as emotions. Where would you suppose people are, who might have an understanding of what we go threw? One place I found that’s pretty good, was the PT and OT departments that I was in, and the hospitals I was in. Chalked full of gals that are single. Men too. One day, I went around and had this very conversation with every single gal there. Asked how they would precieve us if asked out on a date by us disabled. Here’s the shocker. Every one of them had dated a disabled person at some time. None had a problem accomidating their disabilities to go on the date. They loved it. All expressed a good time. So, it boils down to the person, and not the disability. Sell yourself first, and people will buy the product without having to sell that. Just another bridge to cross.
AnonymousJune 25, 2006 at 11:06 am
As the fiance of a GBSer (my sweetie Ben proposed to me while on the ventilator), I think I can safely say that being with someone with this illness has its upside and downside. The upside is that, after 15 months of going through GBS together, we truly value each other in our relationship, and our love for each other gets stronger everyday. The downside is that, if he overdoes it one day, we both pay for it the next. For instance, last night we thought we should go see a concert. Bad idea because it’s now 11:00, and he’s still sleeping, which means I have to be quiet so I don’t wake him up. Not a fun way to spend my day off, but I’m going to surprise him with breakfast in bed.
AnonymousJune 29, 2006 at 2:54 pm
Wow. I always thought it was related to my GBS, but non-GBS friends and family didn’t understand, said it was just in my head…which may well be true! Thing is, my head IS different now. I mean how I think. Since losing about 3 years to GBS painful recovery, divorce during that time, losing money not being able to work, pain pain pain pain pain….well, I treat life in a different way now. Basically, life is a gift that can be taken in a moment’s notice. I have a real phobia of wasting time now, and if my body is letting me do things, then things must get done! Most people I know do not really value their time here. They party a lot, watch a lot of TV, hate their jobs, and cannot understand why I want to swallow life whole, why I have such gusto for what I do (computational chemist). Most of the people I know seem to sort of live in a holding pattern, but maybe I don’t know them that well.
Consequently, since I largely recovered from GBS I have not really found anyone that I resonate with. I have developed a rather cynical attitude about most women. In my mind, they are all shallow. Awful attidude, right? It is not as though I have always been like this. I’ve been married twice, with a wonderful 11 year-old daughter from the second marraige. Many many girlfriends. Since I could do it, I did, and lots.
But I think it is that when I see ANY red flag, and especially one that will probably lead to time-wasting petty problems, its like a switch is shut off inside me. Maybe GBS changed my sexual physiology, and this is just how my brain translates that change. I have little desire for casual sex…simply because it always leads to problems! And after GBS, anything that wastes time from what matters in life is simply not allowed anymore.
THis is not to say that I wouldn ‘t like to meet someone nice. I get very lonely sometimes. I am for the most part a loner, which before GBS was simply not ever the case…I was ALWAYS with someone. Since GBS, I have put everything into building my own life back up, piece by piece. Perhaps narcissistic, but for years it was simply survival. I had no choice, other than suicide…or so it seemed. The thought of a relationship was, and is for the most part, a scary threat to that survival.
Somehow I think this will all make sense to you all.
AnonymousJuly 7, 2006 at 3:11 pm
I know it will be awhile before mom is even back to walking, much less back in the dating world. I gave her your comments (she’s in a skilled nursing facility waiting to go back to inpatient rehab) and she, and I, were very thankful for your honesty. It feels nice to lean on one another and get comfort…
please continue to share your experiences about your social lives post-GBS
is there anything humorous anyone can share? an awkward date? or special moment??
just looking to keep this thread alive!!
AnonymousJuly 7, 2006 at 10:32 pm
Well, as I mentioned in my previous post, Ben proposed to me while he was still on the ventilator. He had been in the hospital for three weeks and came very close to not surviving. I guess since he was unable to communicate during that time, he had a lot of time to think about how much I meant to him and how special our relationship was. He knew that I had taken on all the responsibilities at home and had made sure all his accounts were up-to-date. That meant a lot to him, as well as the fact that I was working a full time job and driving an hour both ways to see him and never once complaining. After six years of dating, it took GBS to finally get him to propose. He had gotten me a Claddaugh ring (an Irish ring that signifies whether you’re single, dating or engaged, depending on how you wear it) for Valentine’s Day the year before, and I had been wearing it on my right hand. When he proposed, he took it off my hand and mouth the words, “Will you marry me?” For a second, I thought he had taken my ring away from me and mouthed the words, “I think I can make it without you,” but after thinking about it for a second, I repeated his question to him, and he nodded yes. I threw my arms around him and screamed, “Of course I’m going to marry you!” He then put the ring on my left hand where I’ve worn it ever since. When his nurses heard he had proposed, they said they started crying in the lunchroom!
AnonymousJuly 10, 2006 at 10:16 pm
can’t I do both:rolleyes: I would love to get more info out about GBS but I would also like to attend a taping of her favorite things show…she does a special every year where she tells what she is getting all of her friends for christmas…don’t ask me why. It just makes me feel a warm and fuzzy 😀
I promise Shannon we are coming to visit.
AnonymousJuly 11, 2006 at 4:01 pm
[SIZE=3][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=darkorchid]Hey, Racer13 😉 ![/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=darkorchid]Never thought of taking a poll in the PT & OT Depts. about dating w’chair dependent WOMEN, but, thank you…I will. Sure beats dishing out the $$$ to Match.com, eHarmony.com, or PerfectMatch.com. [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=darkorchid]It will be interesting to see how many of the male PT’s, OT’s, etc. would or have made dating a woman in, say, a-hemmm, my, situation an option. I may have to advance my search to other depts., as it seems the male-to-female ratio leans more towards the female side in the OT/PT depts. And elsewhere in the hospital, too, for that matter. [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=darkorchid]Hmmm…is it really worth my time to take this survey? Nahhhh. I’ve pretty much decided to let ‘nature’ take its course. If a man decides I’m worth the effort to get to know, great! Bring him on! In the meantime, I’ve put my energy to use in other parts of my life that need improving.[/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
[SIZE=3][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=darkorchid]Would REALLY be nice to grow old with someone. 😮 [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE]
AnonymousJuly 11, 2006 at 4:14 pm
[FONT=Georgia][SIZE=3][COLOR=#9932cc](Hope this quote turns out right. I always seem to mess them up.)[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
[quote=kurt23] I have developed a rather cynical attitude about most women. In my mind, they are all shallow. [/quote]
[FONT=Georgia][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid]Strange…I am developing a very similar attitude towards men. And don’t get me wrong. I have not been this way all my life, either. [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
AnonymousJuly 11, 2006 at 6:04 pm
[FONT=Georgia][SIZE=3][COLOR=#9932cc](Hope this quote turns out right. I always seem to mess them up.)[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=Georgia][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid]Strange…I am developing a very similar attitude towards men. And don’t get me wrong. I have not been this way all my life, either. [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][/QUOTE]
with me, its just dust bunnies. don’t git me rong. i always been that way.
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