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My Husband Thinks It's All In My Head
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:( Aloha,

I am having a hard time with my husband,

I have been ill w/ fibromyalgia 5 yrs but getting better now and a possitive celiac blood panel test for about (so I guess it's celiac) for about 3yrs well everytime I try and be careful not to get contaminated or even bring up any of the two diseases he makes snide remarks like It's all in my head :(

This is VERY hurtful and I am having a real hard time, anyone else relate?

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Well, I do know how it is to have family members in disbelief. I don't know what would ever convince them, so most times I don't even try.

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Suz, I had fibromyalgia most of my life (also now going away with avoiding foods I am intolerant to), and for almost all of my marriage I've had to hear that I am just lazy, and don't want to do things for my husband because I don't love him enough. He never believed me that I am sick and have no energy.

And it isn't possible in my house to be safe, as my husband and daughter leave crumbs everywhere, and don't care. They've told me that the celiac disease is my problem, not their's, and it's my job to keep myself safe. The only way for me to not get glutened all the time would be to move out.

So, yes, I can very much relate to you.

Why isn't a doctor's diagnosis, and your fibro getting better enough evidence for your husband to believe you? Is it possible for him to go to a doctor's appointment with you, and the doctor explaining things to him?

You may want to let your husband know that putting you down all the time is abuse. And making you ill by glutening you all the time is abuse as well (right, my husband is very abusive, I know that).

Is there somebody he will listen to, who could explain things to him?

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I would recommend that he post his feelings here. <_< That should remedy the issue. :)

I am sorry you have such lack of support.

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Yes, and I am so sorry. For that reason I am in the process to seperate from my husband. For years he thought my thyroid issues were most in my head. He does not even know yet that I discovered I have gluten intolerance also - he would not be able to understand the depth of the problem.

And yes, like Ursa said , it is abusive behavior, usually coming from a very self centered person.

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I know the feeling. My husband thinks I make up illnesses. It's about a year since I started itching. It jsut seemed to go from one place to another. I've had two biopsies that were eczema and spongiotic dermatitis. I've been treated for all different rashes, eczema, impetego, poison ivy, tested for herpes that was negative. The list goes on. I finally googled rashes. When I saw some of the DH pictures, I could relate to many of them over the years. I did have a blood test that came back negative. I finally went gluten free the beginning of the year. I had many improvements the first few weeks. My husband is still in the learning process, but getting better. He even had a gluten free cheesecake baked for me for Valentine's Day. He brought 2 dirty dogs home from up north. I told him we had to go get some dog shampoo that was gluten free. Had a hard time believing it, but went to the store with me. Ended up using baby shampoo, thanks to a suggestion from this site. I wish you luck, I know it is hard. I'm not sure that an official diagnosis would make it any easier for him to except. I have been married for 32 years now. It definitely is a hard thing to understand and it doesn't help if they aren't willing to try to understand. Mine seems to do better if I give him small bits of information at a time. Take care.

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My husband was the same way. He ended up completely turning around though and we have two gluten-free kids and a gluten-free household now. He eats gluten-free at home and if he wants something with gluten he eats it when he goes to lunch at work.

In Oct of 2005 he yelled at me for about an hour accusing me of being a hypochondriac, trying to make people feel sorry for me, faking it, being crazy, blah, blah blah... I honestly had one foot out the door (never told him that though). We have two kids and I wasn't just going to cut and run (I don't have any family, so there was nowhere to go temporarily).

By Feb of 2006 he had completely turned around. For Valentine's Day he bought me a bag full of gluten-free products from the healthfood section of the grocery store because he couldn't remember what brand of candy was gluten-free. :wub:

I didn't do anything to make this change happen either. I just mentally decided that he had six months to get his s*it together or I was out of there. I never threatened to leave. I just stopped talking to him about any of it and did what I needed to do to be gluten-free.

For some reason, what you're describing is a common response. For some reason people get all psycho about it. If someone told me that they couldn't eat gluten and I could, I'd just think more for me, ya know? But for some reason, people just freak out about this.

Nancy

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I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one with husband problems! I think the main problem with mine is that he doesn't want it to affect him. We're super busy with 3 kids (3, 2, and 1!) and he just doesn't have time for it. I've decided it's like being pregnant. It's something I had to deal with every minute of every day - and he would be a part of it when he wanted to. It wasn't something he HAD sitting staring him in the face - and so if he didn't have to think about it he didn't want to. It's hurtful - b/c you want them to be concerned about you and care about how you feel - but that's not happening in everyday life! He actually forgets sometimes that I have to watch what I eat - he still does dumb stuff - like put all of the noodles into the chilli and forget I had some for myself on the side that need sauce!

I actually flat out yelled at him yesterday - said he was trying to make me sick. That he must want me to feel bad. I think that me being so vehement about it kind of put it out there for him - that this is something he doesn't want to mess with me about.

THe part that gets me is my family - they are great - super supportive. My mom said something about my huband being an angel - that he just eats what I fix and doesn't complain. I had to bite my tounge...

I agree with Nancy - I do the shopping, etc - so I'm just doing what I need to do. Making a point of moving things away from my food that he may bring home. Keeping his bread in a basket by itself no where near the pantry. Making a point of telling everyone to wash their hands after dinner or after a snack - or after they touch anything gluten. Stuff that will just make it part of his everyday routine so that he doesn't have to deal with it - it is just kind of fixed....

Maybe make a point of telling him on the days that you feel good - that you feel great. Then maybe when you get contaminated he'll notice a real difference, b/c he's heard how great you're doing - and then now you're not so great....

Good luck - I wish I could help!!

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How did he deal with the FMS for the last five years? Does he have any idea that most of your FMS symptoms will likely go away if you stay gluten-free??? I think being gluten-free is way easier to deal with than FMS. (I was also diagnosed with FMS and all my symptoms disappeared when I went gluten-free).

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I didn't do anything to make this change happen either. I just mentally decided that he had six months to get his s*it together or I was out of there. I never threatened to leave. I just stopped talking to him about any of it and did what I needed to do to be gluten-free.

Aha... I beg to differ that you didn't do anything.... :D

and I think this is the best advice you could have given...

I can understand partly why a spouse/parent/child gets sick of hearing about our illness ...

I don't agree with it... but I can understand why.... its a huge shame because I think many of us this is the hardest part.

I think its just information overload and no amount of trying to bring up the subject helps only hinders...

Anyway, take it from a guy.... we get terribly upset when we can't fix things... and feel all helpless. IKn a way every time you mention it ... it just makes him feel more helpless.

Of course leaving crumbs about is another matter.... but I think the big confusion may of us feel at first gets pushed onto a spouse and especially guys are not good at dealing with this... then the resentment grows ... IMHO its not terribly fair or right but the best thing you can do is stop what he considers nagging and moaning and come here and do it! The girls here and most of us guys have a good sympathetic ear... once he's got it oput of his skull that its not nagging and moaning you can work at the other stuff... and hopefully with a little time it will slowly permeate his skull.

I say all that because as a guy known for his stubborness I had my own problems accepting my own diagnosis...

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Aha... I beg to differ that you didn't do anything.... :D

and I think this is the best advice you could have given...

I can understand partly why a spouse/parent/child gets sick of hearing about our illness ...

I don't agree with it... but I can understand why.... its a huge shame because I think many of us this is the hardest part.

I think its just information overload and no amount of trying to bring up the subject helps only hinders...

Anyway, take it from a guy.... we get terribly upset when we can't fix things... and feel all helpless. IKn a way every time you mention it ... it just makes him feel more helpless.

Of course leaving crumbs about is another matter.... but I think the big confusion may of us feel at first gets pushed onto a spouse and especially guys are not good at dealing with this... then the resentment grows ... IMHO its not terribly fair or right but the best thing you can do is stop what he considers nagging and moaning and come here and do it! The girls here and most of us guys have a good sympathetic ear... once he's got it oput of his skull that its not nagging and moaning you can work at the other stuff... and hopefully with a little time it will slowly permeate his skull.

I say all that because as a guy known for his stubborness I had my own problems accepting my own diagnosis...

Thanks so much for your insight. I forget that men think so much differently than we do. Maybe instead of saying - you're doing this wrong and this wrong, etc. I need to be like I am with my kids (no offense!) and say thanks so much for... whenever he does something to help me or washes his hands after eating gluten, etc. Then maybe he won't feel so helpless... and he'll be able to see what I need him to do to keep me healthy. But positively.

You're right - I think I've been so stressed about getting it all right - and quickly - that I somehow expect him to keep up with me. But he really only needs to know enough to have basic survival in the house - and I shouldn't get so offended that he doesn't care to know or understand more.

As far as the hurtful things your husband says - good luck. HOpefully he'll change his tune soon...

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Thanks so much for your insight. I forget that men think so much differently than we do. Maybe instead of saying - you're doing this wrong and this wrong, etc. I need to be like I am with my kids (no offense!)

Non taken, the older I get the more I realise we are all just bigger boys... :ph34r:

and say thanks so much for... whenever he does something to help me or washes his hands after eating gluten, etc. Then maybe he won't feel so helpless... and he'll be able to see what I need him to do to keep me healthy. But positively.

Yep exactly, think about it the other way.... if you only bring the subject up when he does something wrong he's going to associate the subject with blame, nagging, etc.

Each time you bring it up its a little cringe...what did I do now...

Men do make efforts but often they fall short of expectations... but it doesn't mean we don't make the effort, its just not always appreciated..

My girlfriend is far tidier than I am... I often do a quick kitchen once over or perhaps do the worst parts like the hobs or scour the worst part of the bathroom (like sticky toothpaste) but stop at her make-up shelf... in a lot of cases she doesn't realise I made an effort... it just wasn't a huge one... because it wasn't what she would have done... so I blow my own trumpet and say hey look, I know I didn't do everything but I did x,y,z... slowly but surely she notices more of my pathetic guy efforts and appreciates the effort. The difference is she is cleaning the kitchen to have it sparking, I'm just cleaning to make her happy... (below certain tolerances)...

Another weird example, I don't like cut flowers... I don't see the point of buying sometihng already dying and watching it die...

My girlfriend however loves em so I buy them anyway ... I just don't get it but that's OK if it makes her happy.

I also noticed buying flowers can get me a reward (if she's not too tired) ... I respond well to that :D

Some negative examples... my girlfriend will often makes not too "subtle" hints... like starts banging the pans in the kitchen as she empties the dishwasher ... this often feels like I'm being bossed about... made to feel guilty and being a stubborn guy I react badly...

Just come and ask me ... she remembers she filled the dishwasher so its my turn to empty..? fair enough just say so ...

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happy dog suz,

get him the book in my signature, and see then if he thinks its all in your head.

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happy dog suz,

get him the book in my signature, and see then if he thinks its all in your head.

I doubt he'll read it.... it will just be considered more pressure/nagging...

Better to buy the book for yourself and leave it somewhere not too obvious....

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I doubt he'll read it.... it will just be considered more pressure/nagging...

Better to buy the book for yourself and leave it somewhere not too obvious....

Buy the book for yourself, read it and tell him he wouldn't like it ... then he'll really want to read it! :lol:

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Buy the book for yourself, read it and tell him he wouldn't like it ... then he'll really want to read it! :lol:

That might well do the trick :D

In general the problem is not just husbands, many of us have family members who only half beleive us or think we are going over the top and why can't we just shut-up about it...

However in most cases its just overload and thinking its an excuse...

One of the biggest problems IMHO is that the lethargy and depression and other non GI symptoms (I just want leaving alone)... leave people thinking were just banging on about the same old thing or being paranoid.... and the hardest for many is getting the horse to drink...

Heck its so common it should be on the diagnosis

"Do/does your spouse/parents/children not believe you or think you are exagerating? "

Men can be extra funny over stuff they feel they should be able to protect you from and also if they feel your just using it as an excuse... we easily feel victimised... just like bigger versions of schoolboys...

I'm not making excuses, its just the way many men are... me included... but I think it definately makes it hard in situations where the woman is for some reason expected to cook/clean etc.

Personally I do all the cooking.... my girlfriend doesn't SEEM to appreciate that... when it comes to tidying up etc. she'll complain I did nothing all day... to which I think .. erm yep other than doing the shopping, making your meals and doing the dishes... with as much work thrown in as I get time for (between posting here :D)

At the same time anything mechanical, DIY etc. its more or less expected I fix it .. and that sometimes grinds my gears.. I often feel when I ask for help I don't get it or I have to spell things out...

As an example I made dinner the other night, all that needed to be done was the rice and I was doing 3 other things as well.. so I asked her to put the rice on ... which she did and promptly went away.... (GRRRR)

I guess I should have said..can you put the rice on and then watch it ... and drain it when its ready... ?? or she'll come in and keep telling me she's hungry... ?? Erm OK I think, thats food in the fridge and cabinets... ??

I guess because I do 90%+ of the cooking I can understand a bit of both.... except because I'm a guy my reaction to not getting help cooking is a guy reaction... I get all pissed because I think , hey this isn't my job... Im not paid to do this... whereas I think most women would not get so pissed as I do...

What really grinds my gears though is when she makes food for herself... and doesn't think of me or buys food on her way home (when I've cooked already) to feed her gluten addiction...

That all said though... its just different ways people handle different things and some girl vs guy ways of viewing things...

From my perspective saying "could you cook the rice, drain it and then serve it, then dish out the vegetables and stuff I cooked while I'm fixing your/our <insert item>" is redundant... but to her it seems needed... so I just have to spell it all out...

If she spelled it out like that for me I'd consider it nagging....

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I feel for you. My son, who is 23, thought along the same lines until he saw how much better my health is now, almost five months into being gluten free.

Gluten intolerance/Celica disease is difficult for people to understand who don't get as sick as we do when we eat food that for others are harmless.

Hang in there - I hope he will see the light soon... Just don't give up on your gluten free diet! Stick with it. Good luck!

:)

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For a while I suspect my wife thought it was all in my head. She slowly figured it out.

She likes to go to Bingo on Saturday and being the good husband, I always go with her.

She noticed me getting up to go to the bathroom three and four times during a two and a half

hour bingo session.

When I went gluten-free she noticed that, like magic, I had no problem sitting there for the whole time...

She even commented that it seemed to be making a difference.

To top things off, both my brothers reported similar results after going gluten-free, although my nit-witted twin is still in denial, he knows it's a problem for him.

I say...poo in a bucket for your hubby.... Go a month gluten-free and then give him another sample to compare. Let him be the judge ;)

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Lots of reasons here....

Your husband is operating out of ignorance, plain and simple. Why can't he learn about celiac disease?

People can't relate to illnesses they can't see.

There is a strong bias towards diagnosing something as "in your head" when a clear, plain, well known and well understood diagnosis is not involved.

Doctors and the general public are woefully ignorant about celiac disease and the effects of gluten on the body. Forty years ago my mom was repeatedly told her various ailments and her extreme weight loss were "in her head" and doctor after doctor dismissed her as neurotic. One even said "Well, we'll have to call this Mary's disease, won't we!" It was only when she finally was lucky enough to get a doctor who was informed about celiac disease that she got a diagnosis and got better.

The situation is what it is, and you have to think proactively and independently. YOU have to be in charge of all this, and learn to say "to heck" with those who are ignorant about celiac disease. Do what you have to do and forget about the others, you don't need anyone's stamp of approval to accept and deal with celiac disease. Perhaps over time, when those close to you observe the difference in your well being, they will finally understand.

Frankly, I believe a LOT of people are affected by celiac disease but will never know it. They will lead uncomfortable lives with all sorts of ailments that never end....perhaps will be overweight...some may get cancers or other autoimmune disease they never would have had....and they'll never know or understand that their lives could have gone a different way. But you can't save people from their ignorance and lack of motivation to learn. All you can do is take care of yourself, enlighten people when they seem receptive, and otherwise forget the others.

It's astonishing, but so many people feel horrible all the time yet they accept that state as "normal". They don't realize how wonderful they could feel.....IF.....they stopped eating gluten!

Perhaps for some the trade-off isn't worth it....feeling good permanently isn't worth giving up all the goodies. Hard to believe, but true. :unsure:

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Wow, very good thread. I think, my hubby thought at the beginning a little bit like yours. It's all in her head. Eventually he came around. He's a real sweetheart today. I must say, it wouldn't have happened with a little help from the book "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus". It helped me out a great deal and I understood for the first time, why it never worked with my parents. My mom is the "man-nagger" number one, haha. I can just recommend this book. After I worked with it for about 6 months, my husband (still boyfriend then) asked me to be his wife.

Hugs, Stef

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As a non-celiac, this thread makes me pretty sad. My wife got diagnosed last year, and it was me doing all the pushing- as in 'have you checked the label?' 'Are you sure thats safe?' 'you know you shouldn't eat that'. I cannot understand why when you have a diagnosed medical condition someone can still say 'its all in your head.'

Sure, my gStepdad's lukemia was all in his head. He was certain of that. Damn near killed him.

Its hard though, short of throwing a tantrum I think, to really get people to understand how serious something like this is. You're just seen as fussy. My mother [suffering classic mother-in-law-itis] told us that 'faddy dieting' won't do us any good and we should stick to eating normally.

My best guess is that men don't like to feel inadequate, and your illness makes him feel just that. How about next time he gets a light cold and winds up in bed absolutley dying of the flu, you tell him that its 'all in his head?'

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    • hey! Wondering if I can get some good info/help from you guys! I just signed up for this website couple weeks ago. Whenever I would Google things this was always the first to pop up and I always found info on things I googled. I am pretty new to the gluten free thing. I had a hernia surgery back in Jan and after that I kept throwing up after eating, the DR. told me it was probably acid reflex caused from surgery but all the meds I tried nothing helped. I went back and was told to cut gluten out. I have been doing so since. When I first started I felt like I had it under control and didn't throw up for 3 weeks, now I find it happening more often. I do buy gluten-free things and read labels to the best I can. My frustration comes from not knowing what its from. How do you know if its from the day before or what you just ate? I hate not knowing. Especially when I haven't had gluten (or so I think) I have been keeping a journal but I just find it so hard. I get this feeling in my stomach and can feel it in my throat. Sometimes I puke once sometimes 5 times! Yesterday for lunch I made an omlet with chicken mushrooms and feta cheese. I threw up almost 20 min after. I have also tried the no dairy thing and it doesn't seem to make a difference so I don't think dairy is an issue as well.
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