Interabled relationship advice

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priya28

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CALS
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Hello everyone. I am in a relationship with a beautiful man who happens to have als. We met when I began helping him as his caregiver. We have so much in common and just hit it off immediately. I know he is ill but I still see HIM the man and not the illness. I watched a documentary where the woman who had als said it was difficult for her to love as the disease was "all consuming". So here is my question. I want to love and be there for this man. Please tell me, guide me...help me to be what he needs. We get super close then he pulls away. It's almost like he wants to sabotage things. I understand he feels like he is living in hell. How do I help? What can I do? I feel helpless. Any input or advice will be much appreciated.
 

KarenNWendyn

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Sorry to have to welcome you here.

It would be helpful if you could tell us how long your PALS has been dealing with ALS and how functionally impaired he is. At what point did you enter the picture?

While it’s wonderful that you accept and want to love him, ALS and all, you have to realize this will never be an equal relationship. He will always be dependent on you. This could put a strain on a new relationship.

He may be pulling away because this inequality makes him uncomfortable, and/ or because he doesn’t want to hurt you with the losses you both will face.

You also need to realize that the losses a PALS experiences can bring on a loss of control. You can help by giving him emotional space when he pulls away and by being sensitive to the losses he is experiencing.

If you want to continue in a romantic relationship, it might be easier to hire someone else to do the caregiving, and then you could focus on being his partner.
 

KarenNWendyn

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I’ve thought more about this. Waiting for others to weigh in as well.

I have more questions for you.

I’m assuming your PALS was single prior to your entering the picture, right?

Is he aware you have feelings for him, and have you discussed this with him? How far along is your relationship with him, beyond caregiving?

There’s always a line between professionalism and a personal relationship. For example, if you were a doctor or a nurse, it would be unprofessional and inappropriate to embark on a romantic relationship with a patient. As a personal caregiver, the line may be less distinct, but there still is a line.

So, this is complicated. Complicated even more so by the fact he has a terminal disease and is or will become completely dependent on his caregivers.

He may be sensing your desire to get closer, if you haven’t openly discussed it with him, and he could be pulling away because it makes him uncomfortable for some of the reasons I’ve mentioned.
 

priya28

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Jan 12, 2018
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CALS
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Uni
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CT
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Cheshire
Not looking to be judged. We both weren't looking for a relationship, however, we found that we had much in common and hit it off. Our relationship is a beautiful blessing. I appreciate your candor however, I need help in maintaining my relationship. Not judgment on our interabled love.
 
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