Sick or just lazy? Wife of arthritis patient questions husband’s habits

Jul 29, 2021
A wife is fed up with her husband's daily requests. Source: Getty

Living with a chronic condition like arthritis is not easy. It can make everyday tasks seem extremely difficult, and more often than not, the person suffering will have to enlist help from a family member.

That’s the case for one woman whose husband suffers from rheumatoid arthritis. However, the woman has now taken to the online forum Mumsnet to ask whether he may be putting it on and could do simple daily tasks like making a cup of tea on his own.

“DH [darling husband] has very bad rheumatoid arthritis,” she said, before adding that every time their son comes downstairs her husband always asks for something.

“Whenever he wants a drink, he will always ask DS [darling son], who is 21. For example, ‘can you make me a cup of tea/coffee, get me some peanuts’.”

She continued: “The reason why he asks DS is because I sometimes am not as willing to do something. I’ve said sometimes to him ‘why don’t you get up, get it yourself’. DH will respond saying why I’m being nasty and ‘don’t you know how much I’m pain in’.

“I work 12 hour shifts in a factory so my legs and back are aching too and DH usually responds by saying it’s nowhere near as bad as having arthritis.

“I definitely am guilty of sometimes not realising how painful it can be to have arthritis but I don’t know whether DH is capable of doing a bit more or whether I’m being unreasonable and not understanding how much pain he is in.”

Fellow Mumsnet users have since commented on the thread, with one person saying that the woman is being totally “unreasonable”. “I’ve got arthritis in multiple joints and my spine as well as other problems,” the commenter wrote. “DH and my kids don’t begrudge making me cups of tea or getting me things if I’m having a bad day. When your joints are really stiff and painful standing up is ridiculously painful.

“I don’t want to be like this. I doubt your DH does either. Try supporting him.”

Another Mumsnet user agreed, saying: “I have chronic pain and often ask DD [darling daughter] or DH to get things for me. Luckily for me they rarely complain as they know how upset I am that I can’t do the things I used to do. Before I got sick I was the one who ran around after everyone else. It’s upsetting enough losing your mobility without being berated for it.”

Others suggested setting her husband up for a day with a thermos and some snacks so she and her son don’t have to be constantly fussing over him.

“Perhaps someone could make up a thermos of drinks for him so several servings stay cold/hot over several hours, and perhaps also get him a sofa-side snack repository?” one person wrote.

Another added: “What about if he had a snack basket next to his chair in the evenings, and making a flask of tea for him? This would minimise the amount of times he is asking others to get up and fetch things for him during an evening.”

What are your thoughts on this?

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