Single Parenting with Vestibular Disability

Hey anyone,

WARNING…I’m having a bad day…

I am having so much trouble raising my kids with this disorder. They
are 15 and 10. After being sick for two years, then seperated for
almost a year and now divorced… my kids have fallen into a “rut”
where they are angry with me for being sick and not able to do the
things that I used to do with them. I was a VERY active mom before all
this started. Now they have the typcial “disney land dad” who takes
them EVERYWHERE and does all the fun things and here I sit at home and
can’t do anything and am trying so hard to get through this illness and
I am lucky if I can make dinner for them each day. My days are so
unpredictable and I never know if I am going to have a good day or a
bad one and my poor kids are so confused.

It’s been two years of this and I’m afraid they have dismissed me out
of their lives as “the sick one” and the one who is “never any fun” and
they want to go live with their Dad now because he is so much more fun
to be with. They just don’t know what to do with me and they are
scared to be around me because this illness is so unpredictable. I
have slowly become a person in their lives that doesn’t really exist
and they have learned to ignore and they would much rather be with
their Dad who will not help them deal with this whole situation but
only teaches them to ignore it and just have fun. He will not be
supportive and in fact tears me down any chance he gets to them only
making the whole situation much more difficult for everyone.

I have been a stay at home mom since the day they were born (15 years)
and have dedicated my life to raising them and being a part of their
world and their lives , I was involved in everything about them and
since I got sick I have been unable to do any of that. My ex husband
has stepped in and taken over and basically pushed my role as their
mother out and I am almost non existant to them anymore. He is teaching
them that I don’t matter and that sick people are weak and don’t
deserve their time or attention. They should just ignore me b/c I’m
just complaining and want attention. He is teaching them to be abusive
toward me and I am not strong enough to fight this battle anymore by
myself.

Has anyone else experienced anything like this and if so, what have you
done to re-establish your role as a parent in your child’s life while
at the same time trying to deal with this illness. It takes so much
out of you and there is hardly anything left to give because it’s so
exhausting just trying to deal with it.

Is anyone else a single parent dealing with this illness? What do you
do to help your children.

Thanks

Laura

Laura,

Sorry no one has answered this yet. I’m not single but go through the same things with my kids.I feel like less of a mother and its hard. There are days where it is not in me to do all I need to for them. My kids are older but still need me. Just do the best you can that is all anyone can ask. Your still mom and I would not let the kids forget it. ((((((((hugs))))))))

Charisse

Hi Laura

Sorry I missed this one as well.

I am not yet a parent myself, but I can see where you’re coming from.

Have you had any treatment for this condition? Preventative meds can sometimes really turn things around.

It may be hard for a 10 and a 15 year old to understand what is happening and have any real empathy for something they haven’t experienced themselves. They may struggle to understand that unlike what they’ve experienced, sometimes when you get sick you don’t just bounce back and continue life. It seems as they get older and the more of life they experience, the more kids begin to understand their parents and the relationship improves. Surely, things can only get better.

Adam

Oh, Laura. Ugh. My heart goes out to you.

I’m a Navy wife (sea widow) and my husband has been out to sea most of the time I’ve had MAV, but that was prior to my diagnosis and before it got to be an almost everyday thing. Used to I’d get dizzy, be in bed for a couple of days and then bounce back up like nothing ever happened. NOW, this illness effects me every single day when I consider all the things I “don’t do” like grocery shopping, going to the bank, and driving during an attack, etc, but I’ve been lucky to have had him on a shore tour for the past two years.

All of that is about to change soon. DH will go back out to sea and 18 months attached to a ship that leaves constantly. :frowning: I’m not sure how I’m going to make it with my 13 yo daughter. In fact, we’re thinking of moving my daughter and me to AL which is closer to my family so they can help out and have my husband move up to VA alone for 18 months.

I can’t even imagine being single parent with this stuff. How can you deal with it most days? Who grocery shops? Who helps you when you’re “down dizzy?”

I’m not a single mum but I sometimes wonder how they cope. I’m a new mum to a 9 month old and also have a 2 1/2 year old. I find it soooooooooo demanding and exhausting. I’m also up several times a night to the baby. Somehow I make it trhough the day. My partner is pretty helpful but has no understanding of my condition really. He thinks I just get tired but he doesn’t realise what a struggle it is for me to keep going sometimes!

I sympathise and as anothe poster said I’m sure your kids love you as much as ever. Maybe some of these feelings are getting exagerated in your own mind due to the anxiety that often comes with vestibular problems. Your kids wont give up on you I’m sure of that. Congratulate yourself for what you are able to achieve with this horrible condition and try to explain it to your kids.

Have you tried elimination diet and/or medication? I’m on 1.5 mg of Xanax a day which helps me somewhat. I still feel off but my brain seems less stressed.

Hi Laura,

I feel your pain. My husband and I separated this spring and its been pretty tough going as a single mom of 3. My kids are 17, 13 and 11 years old. In Dec. last year I had another bad vertigo attack. We still didn’t know what was wrong with me at the time so my husband took me to emergency. The emergency doctor gave me adivan (anti-anxiety med as well as a vestibular suppressant) and an anti-nausea drug and told my husband to try to reduce my stress. It was all down hill from there. From that day on my husband attitude toward my illness has been to pretend that it doesn’t exist.

On the kid side of things, I think Adam is right. My mother has migraines and as a child I didn’t understand at all. It was just part of life that there were times when my mom would go to the bed room and not come out for days and us kids had to be quiet because she had a headache. Part of the problem was that my dad was dismissive of her illness. In my later teen years is when I got it and I finally understood how sick my mom was. It is also when I began to understand how sh**y it was of my dad to treat her that way. Now as an adult dealing with my own separation I have an even deeper understanding of how strong of a woman my mom is. She never cut my dad down to us because she didn’t want to put us in the middle of their fight and I will always be grateful to her for that especially now that I know how hard it is to hold my own tougn in front of my kids.

Please don’t get me wrong. I would not tolerate my kids abusing me about my illness. I have been very much so matter of fact around them about the days I’m not feeling well. When I’m having a bad day and one of them starts to complain about their plans, I just tell them thinks like “Well that’s just the way life goes. Make other plans for when I’m feeling better”.

I hope this helps.
Gwen

I have twins that will be five later this month. I had my first episode of vertigo shortly after they were born but I was not diagnosed until about six months ago when my neurologist finally decided that I was having migraines. My children have had to deal with my dizzyness all of their lives so I guess that makes them a little more tolerant. However, you still can’t tell a child to take care of themselves at that age. I am married and my husband has tried to be very understanding but when my migraines interfere with our lives it’s hard. We have had vacations ruined, holidays messed up and countless times when he has had to change plans or cancel them all together. It gets old! We are young and we were very active and spontaneous prior to this. I know there has been many times when he has had to go to work and I have had the kids on a “bad” day. At three years old my boys could look at me and say “Mama’s dizzy”. It used to make me cry to know that my children already had to deal with things like that but I guess I it has made it easier for them to understand than if they had to start dealing with it at 15. Hang in there. That’s all we can do.