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By julanders On 2012.04.07 02:11
Here is my storyÖ
Four years ago I met a man who charmed the pants off me.
Everything seemed perfect at the time. We began dating casually and have managed to keep it fun and interesting over the years. I was in a relationship for 12 years prior to him that was all consuming and in many ways hindered my growth and career potential. This time around I was not going to let that happen. Both us came from a place of hurt in relationships and decided that we would keep it ďarmís lengthĒ. Neither of us had any intentions of taking it too seriously. Well of course you know what happen next. We fell in love! About two years ago, after complaining about a stiff arm, strange sensations down his leg, and balance problems when turning corners, he was diagnosed with PD. Over the past two years he has been experimenting with various drug combinations which have gradually turned him into a compulsive gambler. Prior to our first trip to the casino, he had never even mentioned the casino. Well he is now a platinum member and spends thousands of dollars, and countless hours (he was there 18 hours one time). Luckily, our finances are separate and we own separate homes. The doctors are in the process of tweaking his medication. It hasnít worked yet. Well, as you would imagine, I am absolutely heart broken and have gone through periods of just trying to accept it, to periods of anger and rage. It hurts me to see this man burn through his wealth that he acquired at a very early age. I recently saw the movie Love and Other Drugs. I cried like a baby through the whole thing. It hit home mostly because the characters are closer to our age, and like Jake, I am finally feeling like my career and life are taking off . Since we are not married I could just pick up and leave him tomorrow. I love him very much and I would not do that, but it is getting difficult. At first I would justify his behavior and blame it on the PD, but the lines are getting blurry. Anyway, I really donít have a specific reason or question, except as an exercise to help me cope with whatís going on. Any feedback suggestions would be appreciated, though.

By parkinit On 2012.04.07 11:39

Wow! You must be young. I just saw that movie, too, with my spouse, and he mentioned that it barely touched on the true struggles with PD.

Funny that you bring this up because with PD, the struggles don't get any easier and the challenges will continue to be greater and seem at times almost insurmountable. Are you prepared for that? Are you prepared to support this man that you love dearly through better or the worse and there will be more worse than better?

I've had to ask myself these questions many times as this is a second marriage for both of us and we haven't been married that long. I continue to ask myself these questions, but I stay. I choose to be there for him, through the worse, yes, through forsaking a promising career with the excitement of international travel, security in savings, etc., etc. I don't even believe he realizes what I have given up for him, but I know and I still choose him because he, in the better times, was the best, most supportive, most generous with southern gentlemanly manners man that I've met. I love him. Bottom line. For worse. I've accepted that even though I'll complain and whine and fight this lifestyle from time to time. For worse.

You will not be judged here if you decide to walk, though. We all have choices and you are the only one who can make yours. It takes courage for both - to stay or to leave.

By karolinakitty On 2012.04.07 15:11
Welcome Julanders...

I have been with my guy 8years, 4 with PD.
We are not married and have, in those 4 short years had one heck of a rollar coaster ride...

We have a saying in our house..It's only gonna get worse and then we laugh!!!

It is going to get worse...there are more issues as this disease is not just about tremors....I am going to guess your guy is on Mirapex or Requip...those are the two most noted for gambling obsessions.

My guy is weaning off Requip right now, but he didn't have any of the compulsive side effects of it....we are blessed

Both caregiver and Parkie have a rough time as this disease is not for everyone....I love my guy to pieces, but this isn't my first time as caregiver either so I know our road will be rough and has been rough...Only you can decide what you want as your future. There have been a few here that have left their spouses/boyfriends ..some came back..others went on to live their own lives....Like was said won't be judged....being caregiver is not for everyone...some just shouldn't do is as bad for the caregiver as the person being cared for....why have such conflict and drama when it is unnecessary....and again..only you know what you want for your future...

By susger8 On 2012.04.07 17:08
I agree, if your guy is taking Requip or Mirapex, those medications are often linked to compulsive behaviors, including gambling. A surprising number of neurologists don't know this, it seems. Tapering off those medications, if he's on one, might help.

Good luck -- Sue

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