love lost quadriplegic carer

Quadriplegic Lovers Relationship Troubles

I am 20 years old and have been dating my fiance, Chris 34 a C6-C7 incomplete quadriplegic for almost a year now. Chris has no feeling from the chest down, complete use of his arms and limited use of his hands (he can write, type, push his manual chair and even drive so he does very well for himself). Chris has been in the police force for 10 years now and before he started his career in law enforcement he was an Army Ranger. Chris was shot in the neck while on duty in 2007 serving involuntary commitment papers to remove a 60 year old woman from her home.

It was love at first sight! He has always been in good spirits. He has accepted himself and his new life style. Which I admire so much. Lately our relationship is not what it used to be. I am his primary caregiver, we have attendant care 4 nights a week for 3 hours, the rest is left up to me.

love lost carer girlfriend and quadriplegic boyfriend at beach

I am not in good health myself, but I feel like I don’t have the right to complain. He always has to outdo me with his problems. It’s not a competition who feels the worst. Every day I find it harder and harder to take care of him. I am wearing myself out. Worst of all, he is a very cold hearted person with a very dry sense of humor. But I do admire him so much for what he has overcome in his life.

In the Beginning

Before his accident he was an athletic person, he ran every day, a semi-pro cyclist, he loved to hike and camp. He is in very good spirits and doesn’t see himself as disabled. He still lives a very active lifestyle, which wears me out tremendously.

In the beginning everybody was against us. Especially my older brother who was his SWAT Team partner and was by his side the night he was shot. I love him very much and my family has just not gotten to where they accept our relationship. I left home to move in with Chris, I gave up everything that I worked so hard for. I quit my job, dropped out of school, and gave up my car for a Volvo (so he could transfer easily and the wheelchair fits in the back). So therefore I have nothing of my own anymore. I did it out of love for him. He was the best thing that ever happened to me, and I wanted to be with him more than anything despite my family turning against me.

Quadriplegic wheelchair couple holding on for love

Wheelchair Couple Holding On For Love

We have our good days and bad days as any relationship does. I gave up a lot to be with Chris because I love him so much. Adjusting to a quadriplegia lifestyle has been really hard for me. I still haven’t gotten used to other women being in my house taking care of my fiancé, knowing about our personal lives and every little detail that goes on in our home. I pretty much take care of everything else on my own the laundry, cooking, cleaning, taking care of his service dog, making sure he has his meds every week, taking him to work, picking him up from work, taking him wherever he needs and wants to go.

Where Did My Life Go

He is not the same person that I feel in love with. He has become very demanding and says hurtful things. When I try to talk to him about it he just says it has to be done. I constantly have to clean up after him on top of everything else and he doesn’t care. I don’t see him as disabled, I see him not the chair. If he is able to make the mess he is able to clean it up, but he leaves it for me, if I didn’t do it, it wouldn’t get done. Then he just says that I’m OCD. But what is wrong with wanting a clean house? He just expects me to do everything and I never get the respect or appreciation that I think I deserve. He never offers to help me and I am getting very tired and sad.

I want to go back to school, but he says that I don’t need to because I get paid a very decent amount of money as his primary caregiver. But I want more for me, I want to be successful and have a career. I want a family one day and I know that I could never have children and take care of him. He is getting a vehicle that is modified for him to drive soon. I am hoping that it will help our relationship and take some stress of me.

His Quadriplegia is Consuming Me

quadriplegic wheelchair love couple holding hands

Quadriplegic Wheelchair Lovers

I have explained my feelings and thoughts to him as we are very open with each other. We have never had a problem expressing our feelings. After I tell him how I feel, he just says sorry. That’s it… “sorry.”

I don’t know what to do anymore. I have thought about hiring weekend, night time help for the bowel program and showering, but he says that the weekend is our time for just us. The last time I mentioned it, he said “Is it really that hard for you to do it a couple of nights?” It is, because we don’t have simple quiet weekends at home, we are always on the go, by the time we get home I am worn out from the traveling, transfers, and putting the wheelchair in and out of the car.

I do the morning routine; I get him up every morning and drive him 30 minutes to work then drive 30 minutes back home. He says, what is the point on hiring a morning time aide, because when he gets his truck the morning routine will just consist of getting him up and dressed. But he has been saying the truck will be here in a couple of weeks… for about 3 months now.

Quadriplegia & Wheelchair Partners Insight

I guess I am asking for your advice as wheelchair users other quadriplegics and their lovers or partners. Am I being selfish? Since I had an idea of what I was getting into? I never knew that it would be this hard. I can’t do the things that I want to do in life, because I am always assisting him in the things he wants to do. He is very inconsiderate of my feelings and is very selfish. It is always about him, but what about me? Am I the selfish one?

I don’t know what to do anymore, I am asking for your advice. I hope that I haven’t offended you in anyway. If I have I certainly did not intend to. I hope that you can help me and give me some insight.

Best wishes to you!

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About Graham - Site Admin

Quadriplegic Founder and Admin of the Mad Spaz Club. Spinal Cord Injury Keynote Speaker and WRD Ambassador. I like meeting wheelchair users and sitting in the sun at the beach. Why did I create and keep this website running? The simple answer is I like to help people. To give voice to those unable to speak. As an advocate and keynote speaker for spinal cord injury awareness I am not afraid to discuss tough and controversial subjects. I have become a better man for listening to you the Mad Spaz Club members, and I thankyou one and all. So willing to bare your soul and share your precious thoughts many of you have touched me deeply. I have cried and laughed along with you, it has been humbling, empowering, and will always be my honor. To all the valued members of the Mad Spaz Club I look forward to learning more about you all for many years to come, sharing with open hearts our experiences through the freedom of speech empowering us and making all our lives meaningful positive and the richer.

128 thoughts on “Quadriplegic Lovers Relationship Troubles

  1. Tina

    I met my boyfriend in October of 2012. He’s a C4-C6 quad, but has regained some feeling and movement from his mid chest up. He was a star athlete prior to his accident back in 1987, and I feel like he missed out on some much-needed therapy to deal with what he lost. I say this because he blows his top almost anytime something doesn’t go his way. He also becomes RIDICULOUSLY upset when I don’t agree with him, and says I’m overriding him when I disagree with a decision he made FOR me, without checking with me. He makes issues where ther ARE none…To say the least, dude has some MAJOR anger and control issues…He constantly judges able-bodied people’s choices, as if his being in a wheelchair gives him license to do so. And he likes to feel sorry for himself and try to reel me in to his pity party. I really think he should get some help to deal with emotions, but God forbid I should make that recommendation

  2. Paula

    I am a wife a quad. Married 18 yrs and he’s been a quad for 17 yrs. he had his injury nine months after we were married and have been together ever since. We’ve gone through hell and back but nothing has not stopped us. He just had bladder and prostate removal surgery

  3. Patty

    Hello, I’m really glad to have stumbled onto this site. I’m a female and the person with the injury. I’m a C 5/6 incomplete quad, who broke my neck in an automobile accident in 2009, at the age of forty. My husband and I have been together for fourteen years and married for ten. I’m extremely forunate in that with leg bracing and a roller walker, I can move about my home, be independent with most ADLs and even walk short distances outside on flat, soild surfaces. I use a scooter for long distances, work and shopping. I have BSN in nursing and am a twenty-two year Registered Nurse. In fact, I got hurt, in the auto accident, by falling asleep at the wheel after being forced into a third back-to-back(-to-back) sixteen hour double shift. The one thing I’m most thankful for is that I alone was the only person involved in the wreck. I cringe and become nauseated at the thought that I could have hurt or killed another human being. I have a great deal of mobility on my L side, but no sensation, with very little mobility on my R side and enough sensation to test the temperature of my bath water to a reasonable degree of certainty. I have uncontrollable nerve pain with high tone and spasticity in my extremities. I’ve tried all the medications, supplements, therapies and bio feed back, to no avail. For the first two years following my accident, when I was not in rehab, I spent my time being angry, feeling sorry for myself and doing my level best to drive my husband as far away from me, as I could. As a nurse, I was completely familiar with, and could relate to, the term “caregiver burnout”. But, in my perpetual state of “poor me”, it didn’t seem to matter how much stress I was putting on my dear, sweet man. He was working his regular full time 10 hour a night job at least five, and more often then not, six days a week. Then, he was coming home, taking me back and forth to PT and OT, keeping up with ALL of the household chores, waiting on me hand and foot and with his spare two or three minutes, trying to catch a nap, just so he could hit the rat race, again. The FINAL straw for us comd one evening when I was whining about him no longer being attracted to me and our lack of intimacy. Boy, oh boy, did he ever let me have it with both barrels open. It was my wake-up call to just about loosing the love of my life. As he clearly let me know, his total lack of intetest in me sexually, or really otherwise as a female, had absolutely nothing to do with my physical limitations or awkwardness of my being a quadriplegic, but rather it was the terrible personality change I had allowed the injury to transform in me. Gone, he said, was that “confident, driven, vibrant, fun loving and compassionate woman”, that he had feel in love with, and she’d been replaced with this “angry, self-loathing, unmotivated” individual that he no longer recognized. As he was further explaining how his love for me had never diminished by his assisting me with a TRUE need, or did he ever tire of doing so, all that kept reverberating in my head was those two horrible words; unmotivated and self-loathing. It was in that moment I realized not only did I have a spinal cord injury, but a spinal cord injury had me!! I had allowed this appalling thing to steal my soul, and now I was just about to loose the one person who had loved me unconditionally. It was then and there I made the decision that this thing would no longer own me. My motto to this day is…”I have a spinal cord injury, a spinal cord injury does NOT have me.” With my new found motivation came a desire, not only to pleass my husband, but also love myself enough to not allow this to be make me it’s victim. As I grew more serious about my therapies, and become more thankful for what I do have and less focused on what I don’t, I’ve learned to do more and more for myself. Soon, I found myself standing and then walking some with the help of my assistve devices. What a high that was!! Before long my therapist was suggesting I try out a whole new set of wheels by learning to drive again. With a couple of modifications and some adaptive equipment, I was soon off to the DMV to obtain my new found freedom. Being able to drive again has opened so many doors for me. I’ve been able to return to work part-time. Although I no longer can be a floor nurse, working neuro surgery like I did prior to the accident, I still have a rewarding job as a MDS Coordinator, by ensuring the geratric residents at our facility get the very best medical care possible. My relationship with my husband has done a 360 and we’re closer then ever in every sense of way, including our intimacy. I’ve accepted there are some things that I need to find new ways of doing, and even fewer that I’m actually unable to do. I try now to always accept any assistance with grace and thankfulness. I make a conscious effort of not allowing my husband to be involved with such things as my bowel program, or management of my spastic bladder. Although, there are times accidents occur. We try to laugh about them and move on. One traveling trick I’ve learned is to wear a diaper type garment on longer trips. Once we get to our destination, he knows to allow me the time and privacy to freshen up and change back to regular under clothes that make me feel more feminine. We’ve taken two cruises, and he’s even figured out a device to hoist me on and off our Bayliner, so we can go fishing. We’ve always been avid anglers. I can now say there is life again after a SCI. There can be a fulfilling life, and so much of that depends on our attitude. I know each case is different and SCI’s are as individual as a snow flake. No one can predict or expect another person’s physical capabilities to meet or exceeds theirs. I know I’ve generally met my potential physically for the level and severity of my injury. There are still days that my nerve pain and spasms drive me under the covers to hibernate. But, as the old saying goes, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. If I could give any advice to a new SCI person, it would simply be to be patient with yourself as you learn to accept this new life, and remember those around you, whether they be your caregivers, family, friends or a combination of both, they too are learning just like you. They often get just exhausted as you, and when you see their coping mechanisms are running low, look for orther resources to meet your needs. And no matter how lousy you feel NEVER take it out on a well meaning person who is doing their best and most of all learn to say thank you and mean it. Gratitude goes a long way in expressing your appreciation. I honestly believe one of the greatest keys to successfully managing a SCI, is to set up a positive environment around you. God bless each of you and may your blessings be many!!

  4. amanda

    Thank you for sharing your story and welcome to the forum. I loved your quote about having an SCI but the SCI not having you. Amazing power the mind has and it’s also awesome how things happen when you accept and are comfortable in your own skin. :)

  5. Scott Van De Walle

    I have recently lost my soul wife, a c-5, c-6 complete quad….I lost the relationship after being her caregiver for a year and a half…She is young, 32 yrs old, and her “wreck happened in 2000….I did have respite care, but the problem was her family…enabling, extra meds given to her…it was 2 steps forward and 3 steps back every week…my hope was for her to want to become what SHE wanted to be…independent…

    After many great talks, and an outline of baby steps for her care, which would require a pelvic re-construction, she went back into a dark place. She has full blown PTSD, and it would come at me like a tornado…out of nowhere…and usually at 2-3a.m…..after counseling sessions and just pure exhaustion of the repeat of these things, I started to break down..physical and mental will broke down for me…she had many resources outside of my care and didn’t want or choose to explore them…it was hard to be non-emotional. How do stand by someone who wants to be cared for 24/7 and not allow you to go out at night, for a coffee with a friend? Yes, it was like that…I miss her so much, and fear for the worse…when I left she was 125lbs ( she is 5’11”) …and now she is back below 100lbs….Its hard to hear about and people say I should just let go…but they don’t understand, and I get it, but its like being in a lonesome valley, seeing the top of that mountain, but the valley keeps getting further and further away from that peak…I am forever thankful for the insight she gave to quadriplegia and how to care for one, and I am also sad to not see now, what she could be with HER will, and the support of so many….Thank you all for sharing…this is my first time on here and I got a could cry out…THANK YOU

  6. Jim

    With doing routines does that prevent paralized poeple from having accidents or do some still have this problem? I knew a few who had to change regularly after it happen.

  7. Danielle

    Hi all

    Who knows where to start with this one. everybody’s in the same boat, and everyone’s problems similar yet so different. Our quick background; My other half has been a C4 quad for 18 months now, he broke his neck when I was 6 months pregnant with our first son. We spent the first 3 months in good old intensive care (otherwise known as prison) with me doing the chest physio, just about to have our son.
    So this is what I think. Anything, any day, any moment is better than that hell hole. So everyday we are thankful for that. We are thankful for our son he is the best distraction from this horrible life, and couldn’t have come at a better time.
    I am tough on my partner though, I won’t put up with shit, I won’t put up with him the tiny little thing he can, and that’s just that. He has always been kind, loving and selfless, and he still is. He has never yelled at me, never been cruel to me and never forced me to “stay”.
    Back in ICU when he couldn’t breathe I wanted to run for the hills, and the best things I ever did, was tell him that that’s exactly what I wanted to do. He always said ‘ darlin you don’t have to stay, you don’t have to live this life too’.
    So my tip is be honest, don’t kid yourself if its not working, not all guys are nice before or after their break their neck back or brains, and not all relationships are meant to work, or will work forever.
    I say draw the line, be honest with one another before its to fucked, tell each other where you stand and what you want, and what’s hard and what you love and what you miss. Otherwise you’ll just be two angry people in a stuffy house cooped up hating one another.
    Just because my other half broke his neck, is no excuse for us, two people to love the shit out of each other. And it’s defiantly no excuse not to treat each other with love and respect.
    In the words of Kenny Rogers, ‘you got to know when to hold em, and know when to fold em’.

  8. Jennifer

    Hi to everyone. I am 100% new here. I have no idea where to post my story/what I want to ask. This was really the article I came across a few days ago and have been reading through it ever since. I made an account, and tried to peruse the site to figure out where to post but…Well, I am blond. Holllllllly crap, I don’t even know where to begin, just be forewarned this is going to be LONG. Almost novel long, type of long.

    I am able bodied, and 26 years old. (I will actually be 27 on the 31st of January). Without going into great detail – I have had a crap life. Ever since High School I have had guys chasing me out the wing-wang. I had probably 5 boyfriends throughout HighSchool, 2 of them were long term. (One was about a year and a half, the other about a year. I know, not exactly long term but I guess to a teen it is). I was always cheated on by all of them and left for old girlfriend’s. When I was 18 and had 2 weeks of HighSchool left, I met a guy who lived 2 hours away through a friend of mine. He was 24. We dated, and as soon as I graduated I moved away to be with him. I was pregnant 3 months later. I went to college for criminal justice, doing it online. When I had my daughter, my ex worked 3 jobs, and I had crazy post-partum depression. I had no help with her, and was doing my school work. We got together in May 2005. Had my daughter May 2006. We got married May 2007. He put me through a ringer. He has always been a cheater, a liar, a user… Any girl who so much as winked at him he would flirt back. He would text them, text dirty things, send and receive photos that were inappropriate, etc. I found girl, after girl, and threatened to leave time after time but he promised he’d stop and I wanted it to work for my daughter.

    It got to the point he would go out to bars without me and get girl’s phone numbers, hide them behind guys names, then I was finding out he was actually physically cheating. I just was always finding new females, new things out…every week was something new. He really destroyed my confidence and my outlook on life and everything. In 2010 I was in New Orleans on vacation and I was drugged by a German man and I was handed off to a large group of Hispanics who then drove me an hour away from Bourbon street, and I was beat and raped for hours. Especially when they found my Police I.D. in my pocket. (I was a cop for about 5 years, at the time I was still a cop.) A week after this happened my husband was sleeping with my bestfriend in our bed. Needless to say I moved out and we separated. I was tired of being treated that way. I wanted to be happy. I wanted someone who actually liked what I liked which was mostly going camping, backpacking, traveling, having new adventures. I wanted someone who was fiercly loyal, who was protective of me, who could protect me and wanted to, who wanted to take care of me for a change instead of me taking care of everyone else, who wanted to have children and a good marriage, someone who thought of infidelity and it made them sick, who could be a twisted little weirdo like me but who also enjoyed some sappy cute things such as wearing matching boyfriend/girlfriend shirts, matching rings, who liked to be hand in hand all the time. You know, “where you go, I go.” Who thought the idea of time apart was ridiculous, and who thought girl’s nights and guy’s nights were dumb. I could go on and on about more intricate details but I would be here all day. Moving on… I got out and met people, tried online dating… I would always think I found a guy for me until the little things always got to him. He thought it was clingy, he thought it was too much, he thought it was weird. And then I would get ditched. One guy I did date ended up cheating on me in the first 2 months because he was just a ladies man I guess.

    A few months after that my husband changed his mind on divorce and had me move back in. He did not change. He was still doing his usual crap. At the end of 2011 we separated again and I told him I was done. After a few months I tried dating stuff again, with the same results as last time. I even tried meeting a British guy in summer 2012, with thee same results. No one likes my ideals of a relationship I guess. I became resigned at the beginning of January last year that there was no man out there like that. I figured I would be alone for the rest of my life. I am not the type for one night stands (at that point I hadn’t had sex in a year). Here’s where the important part begins. Again I am sorry this is so long.

    I used to play this online game called SecondLife. I got on one night and was sitting around a sim I used to frequent. I get this message from some avatar in my IM box. It was funny, witty, intelligent, etc. He took notice of a Lizzie Borden quote I had, and he being a lover of all things weird and morbid and macabre as well just had to message me. I messaged back, and we ended up chatting for about 8 hours. The next day I remember waking up going, “Wait. Was that guy real or was it a dream because he was awesome.” We talked more on SL, until it moved to us emailing each other through the day, and then chatting on SL at night. I learned things about him, plus he gave me photos and holy moly was I attracted. He was 6’4″, and just hot. Had a hot body, loved to workout as I did, was into eating healthy like I am, was into outdoorsy stuff like I am. He listened to me talk about myself, my life, all the horrible things I had went through as a child and growing up. He listened to my pagan beliefs, my wiccan beliefs. I told him about my daughter and was scared to…a lot of people ran away when they found out I had a kid. But he stayed and asked about her.

    My cat disappeared one day for over a week and I thought he was dead. I was really depressed and he sat online in case I needed him, every night. Even when I was less than sweet and didn’t want to talk to him. This was the end of February. I had told him how much I had been hurt and he understood, he even went off on rants about infidelity. I told him I have walls up and I don’t want to let him in yet he stayed and he kept tearing those walls down day by day.

    By May, I realized that he was everything I had ever wanted. Every little detail I have ever wanted in a man, in a relationship, in life… He was it, had it, wanted it too. My walls tumbled down, I opened up to him, and man it was great. We would Skype at night and he would talk to me until I fell asleep, and then he sat there for a few hours after to make sure I didn’t wake up from a nightmare. He listened to my problems and never once complained. He offered advice and was always on my side even when I probably should have been told to shut up. Every single night we talked for hours about having babies, and him giving me as many as I want, he wanting to take care of me and defending me if anyone messed with me when we go out, about us always being hand in hand whether it’s at home or out and about and people will know who he is with. We talked about our first time together in great detail (sex wise). We talked about my daughter and how he wanted to meet her and how I thought she would love him. We talked about taking courses at this school called NOLS for backpacking and sea kayaking over in Australia. We talked about living our life together and doing everything we want. How he can’t wait to take care of me when I am pregnant with his baby. He wants to be the one to run out at 3 am when I get a craving. He hated infidelity, guys nights, spending time apart. He was so much like me we often joked we were the same person. I cannot express it enough. No matter how well I try to describe it on here, I can never hit exactly what it is we share. Everything from sex, fantasies, loyalty, life goals and dreams. We planned stuff out every single night and talked about it and he promised it was all going to happen every time we talked about it. I felt strong again, confident again, happy again. It gave me the strength to figure out what I wanted in life and to want to be a better person for him too.

    He even gives me 140 dollars every few weeks to get a deep tissue massage because I have tension in my upper body that is just…it makes me miserable. He knows my family has been shit, and he has always told me how his family would love me and I would always be a part of his family. I have never been in love before. I believe that after meeting him. I cried with happiness most nights. I knew I was never going to take him for granted when we were together. I thanked whatever deity there was out there for this, for me finally getting what I thought I deserved, for leading me to this man. What were the chances I met my soul mate on SL that night? (I’m sorry if anything is jumbled, I am bawling as I write this.)We had this revelation a few months ago about us being twin flames, and I had past life readings done that said we had past lives together and we were twin flames and it just more cemented everything for him and I.

    He lives in Mississippi, and I in Ohio. I always would randomly cry and beg him to come be with me and there was always some kind of reasoning he would have for his “not just yet.” This past Monday I was going through another one of those and just really losing it. I haven’t had sex in 2 years, and I am a VERY highly sexual person. My sex drive is insane. He started talking about some story, I didn’t understand what he was going on about, plus I was crying. He said when he was 19, he was in college, and he was leaving campus to go to his basketball game or something like that. He was supposed to leave an hour later but had friends leaving at that moment so he decided to get a head start. Why not. So it was one of those soft top jeeps. He wasn’t driving. There was a crash and he was ejected from the vehicle. He was severely injured.

    I interrupted him and said something and he said baby I am trying to tell you something and he started crying. He told me since he was 19 he has been a c5/6 quadriplegic. He can’t walk, can’t use his hands. He can flex his wrists up. He can move his arms, he has control of his biceps but not his triceps really. He lives with his parents and they have to assist him with about everything. He’s not 30, he’s 35. And those photos weren’t of him. The photos I have looked at for over a year from his face to his body… not him. He did it because when I met him, he never knew it was going to develop into something, so he just grabbed a random photo and gave it to me. The more we talked he realized he was getting feelings for me and he kept on with the photos from the same person or whatever. The harder it got to come clean because then he was afraid to lose me. He said he can’t forgive himself for this because it was selfish…he liked the way I saw him and the way I appreciated everything about him and how I made him feel and the way we talked made him feel like before his accident and that made it harder to come clean. I feel totally crushed. I mean into a billion pieces. I really didn’t have much of myself left when I met him. I haven’t for a long time. I’ve been through a lot in my lifetime. More than someone should have to experience in multiple lifetimes. The whole time this past year every night I was thanking everything I could to have met someone like this, someone who loves me the way he does. I felt like my shit life was over and I finally had paid my dues and was getting what I deserved. Everything I had planned, thought was true, thought would happen… isn’t going to happen, wasn’t true, can’t happen, etc. It’s hard to swallow, it’s hard to deal with. I don’t know how to deal with it. He’s not the same face I had come to fall in love with. I had totally different photos of his body of his face, everything. We talked about traveling, having children, him protecting me for once in my life having someone to take care of me… He can’t backpack, can’t take care of me, if we could have a child he wouldn’t be able to help. I can’t take care of him day in and day out on top of children like that….He got on webcam Wednesday night and I saw his face and it was so weird. I felt so bad because the photos I had were of a very attractive in shape super tall man and it’s not that he’s ugly or anything… I just feel weird seeing his face attached to the voice I pictured a different face on.

    He told me I have every right to hate him. I don’t. I am hurt beyond words, and yet I can understand a lot of why he did it. But then again I don’t understand how he could hurt me like this. He told me I owe it to myself to go out and see what else is out there, so I could be happy. He feels he would hold me back from a lot of things I want. He wants to give me everything we talked about, he knows he can’t do it all.

    I can’t picture myself with someone else. I can’t picture myself without him in my life. I just can’t. He wants me to think of my 7 year old daughter, but she has a heart of gold. He thinks I won’t be able to see past his chair. He feels like a burden, but feels so lacking. We are both heart broken but I am the most heart broken. I am really struggling with this. I want to be with him, I just don’t know how to. I don’t know if I could handle that life. I want to, I just don’t know if I could. But I know I want no other man, and I want him. I’ve been researching this, and trying to understand a lot of it. I know it would be hard … I just…I don’t know. Advice from anyone? I am drowning here.

  9. Laynesworld

    I’m a quadriplegic, 47 years of age. I have been disabled for 23 years. Reading over these letters, I can only pray to God that He would be so gracious as to letting me spend time with a loving woman. I have been single for many years. Lord willing, she’ll come along soon. :-)

    Reading over these letters, I feel you guys. Being single, I feel you even more. God has a reason for letting everything happen. For any woman to believe that she can take on managing a family, and a quadriplegic husband, she is brave to say the very least, and extremely naïve in her thinking. In my opinion, there needs to be a caregiver other than yourself. Everyone needs the time alone. Everyone needs their downtime. If a quadriplegic man cannot accept the fact that his wife/girlfriend needs a break, he is being selfish.

    Try to live without regrets. Admit to those you love that they are loved and needed in your life. Forgive those that hurt us, because if we do not, it is only us that will live with the pain, and we will inevitably answer to God for our ways. I wish all of you well, it should you choose, I’m here for anyone who needs an ear or a friend.

  10. pammy

    Hi everyone,

    One of my best friends is a quadriplegic and has been for four years now. I am an industrial design student working on my major project. I am hoping to design a product to help him with his confidence and improve intimacy for him and his partner. I need some extra help and would like to ask if anyone would be willing to participate.

    I need partners and spouses of those in wheelchairs to participate to gain a better insight of what its like to be in a relationship with someone with a disability. If you are in a wheelchair due to a spinal cord injury and would like speak to me about your experiences or give me any suggestions on what you feel is missing out in the market please let me know.

    thanks everyone! :)

  11. rcquad

    The relationship should end unless 1. your guy becomes more aware of your needs. For your relationship to last 2. you must not do personal cares. Your personal intimate, sexual interaction is highly improved minus the bowel program, the clean up stuff. He needs housekeeping chore service and his being injured on the cop job means 3. he has the resources to hire PCAs and chore services. This is available in the civilized part of the country, not the south! At this time you are playing the Martyr and he is a selfish Bastard!

  12. Laynesworld

    Please understand that my computer is voice-activated. I’m saying this, because mistakes often happen without my noticing. :-)

    The relationship should end unless? This is pretty demanding, isn’t it?? I believe that the relationship with the disabled person, more specifically, a quadriplegic, can be healthy if the partner, male or female, does involve themselves with the care of their partner. I have been in several relationships, although I have not been married. If there’s going to be any privacy, a trip taken, time shared, without an attendant around, the partner needs to know how to care for their disabled person. The person giving care, she/he, in my opinion, should want to be physically involved with this care. Should something happen, in a pinch, and their help is needed, what then?

    Yes, it’s a lot of work, and caring for someone in this manner, a morning routine, and night routine, can indeed be extremely trying on both participants. This is not an easy lifestyle to deal with. It’s certainly not for everyone. For myself, speaking freely, it’s incredibly frustrating, day after day, depending on others for my every move; while getting ready in the morning, while getting ready for bed at night, and throughout the day time hours as well. Imagine you have spent hours cleaning your house, in anticipation of family members coming to visit. You look around your house, you see that everything is just perfect, as you want it to be, everything dusted, flowers set out, carpets cleaned, etc.. Then only minutes before your family is expected to arrive, two or three of your children come running into your house with their dirty feet, their dirty hands, and make a mess of all your hard work done in preparation for your guest. At this moment, how you feel? Are you ready to pull out your hair by its roots.

    If there’s a woman/man that cares for someone that disabled, they truly love this person, they’ll want to do anything they can to help out. If they don’t want to help out, if they don’t want to care, physically, for their someone that disabled, well, shame on them. They should not be so selfish. One never knows when the tide could turn. If someone disabled isn’t willing to bring in personal-care attendant, shame on them as well.

    Many years ago, three years after I became disabled, it was necessary that I have yet another neck surgery, this being the second surgery. To my dismay, a cyst was growing on my vertebrae, C4. The doctors told me that I would need to have this cyst removed, or I would lose what use of my arms that I had regained since my being disabled. Throughout the following four months, while living in Miami, Florida, because of the surgery, my mother took care of me. Even while I was in the hospital, my mother would come in early in the morning and take care of my needs. She would be with me all day long, and return the next morning.

    I could see the fatigue wearing on her. Was of being selfish for not suggesting we bring in outside help to assist with my care? Was I being selfish, believing my mother would never tire? To be honest with you, I needed her so badly, beside me, helping me, that I did not notice her being just shy of breaking down. Both physically and emotionally, my then 50-year-old mother was to her breaking point. She loved me so much, she cared so deeply for me, she continued care for me without complaining. Inevitably, she did bring in outside help. When this dreaded moment did come, I became very selfish. We called on a local agency for assistance. The woman arrived at 7 PM. Opening the front door of the condo to greet this woman, I knew that I could not go through with training a woman I knew nothing about, a woman that would not be in my life longer than a month at best. I turned her away.

    At that moment, I needed my mother so badly that I was being selfish, expecting her to continue with my care despite her being too the point of collapsing. Speaking for myself, it’s comforting to be cared for by someone that I know, versus someone that is new to me. I’m a creature of habit. I appreciate the fact that things are going to be done the same way every time, my morning routine/night routine. My mother knew my care. My mother cared, and she cared for me. I needed this unity more than she could possibly realize. Then again, maybe she realized this more than I possibly knew. While in duress, sometimes we’re blind of others needs. :-)

    Having resources to bring in outside help is nice. I too have resources, and I do have quality help that work for me. But you know, it’s really nice when my mother visits me, and helps me with the most mundane of things. Personally, I don’t enjoy bringing new people into my life. I don’t enjoy having outsiders knowing about my personal belongings. Am I being selfish? I don’t think so. My lifestyle has been compromised enough. Should someone, any disabled person, not want to bring in a total stranger to their life, please don’t dismiss their feelings. You never know, again, the tide may turn. If I might add, respectively, be wary of what you say. I live in the south. All regions have their weaknesses, as well as people do. What brings you to the assumption that the south and civilized?? The bastard you spoke of, you know him well enough to adequately say that he is the bastard? You throw some pretty hard stones.

  13. amanda

    Hi Layne,
    Thank you for your post and welcome to the forum. I agree that both parties in the relationship should learn personal care for that “what if something happens” moment because, unfortunately, those moments do happen. And, I love my guy so it isn’t really any big deal to me. He gives me so much in the relationship in so many ways. If he needs help w personal stuff so be it. We all need help in some ways in life.
    That being said, outside the personal care realm I let my guy do everything he can do on his own because a) he’s better at many things than I am and b) I try very hard not to suffocate him or make him feel as if he has no control over things in his life that he can have control over, if that makes any sense.
    You mentioned you don’t like bringing new people into your life. Would you mind expounding on that? Do you mean into your personal care, or meeting people in general? I’m asking because my guy just returned to a job (his first since his injury in 2002)and he’s mentioned not wanting to bond with co-workers. I’ve asked him if it is because of the injury or just a general practice against hanging out with people from work off hours, but I’m curious as to how others feel. I’m not assuming all people react the same, I’m generally curious on your take. Once again, welcome to the forum and I would enjoy hearing more of your story.

  14. shine Hill

    Well I sure as hell would date quadriplegic why not? I work will them from to time to.I also wonder what it like to have relationship with a person with a disability

  15. Marius-Andrei

    All my respect for you people , i have my hardtimes too , but you are more powerfull that i can imagine , this must be a lesson of life for everybody , we have a lot to learn from you , from your way of life , from your hearts and from your souls . Respect for you ! Keep on being that beautiful people that you are now !!! .:. God Bless You !

  16. Jim727

    He needs time to realize what he has become. Leaving him would be best. Time alone will help him learn about himself. You need to remove yourself from his care!! You also need to get your life going again. A job, car, and a social life. I would give any thing for a woman like her.

  17. Key to My Heart

    Hi Everyone, this is all new for me. However, I am about to marry the love of my life and he is a quadriplegic. We have known each other for 31 years but, we were separated for many years. We tried to get married 8 years ago and I just could not bring this onto my children who are now grown. Now, we are empty nesters and love each other so much. I feel a great deal of peace about marrying him and he is so grateful for all that I do for him. He is still having a hard time believing that this is really happening. I just want some advice. His mother is there for him but, his other siblings are not able to give too much assistance and even have a hard time dealing with his situation which resulted from a car accident 12 years ago. Please give me your advice. We both feel that we were supposed to be together because we had a beautiful relationship and I left and went into the military. I need advice and insight on what to expect after I take on this responsibility. Lastly, I will be working full time when we marry.

  18. Sharon

    I just started talking to a man I met online who is a quadriplegic. I’ve never dated someone who is a quad but i do know ppl who are quads. He got shot several yrs ago & has come to terms w his disability. I was wondering how the relationship would work. These stories have helped me & gave me insight. He has use of his arms but not hands so he can’t leave alone nor can he drive. But he does own his own business. Hes the sweetest guy & I’m hoping that it’ll work out. I’m alittle nervous but i believe that if God wanted us to met.

  19. amanda

    I’m hoping it will work out for you as well. Communication, patience, and laughter are key to any relationship- able bodied or not so keep talking and laughing with each other and your nervousness will disappear.
    Good luck to you both!!

  20. Tina

    Hi Sharon,

    Just take things slow. His paralysis doesn’t define him. Enjoy getting to know him and see where it goes. Best wishes to you two!! :)

  21. Misti

    Hi, I happened across this because I was trying to find a website to help me deal with issues. My husband has been paralyzed since our 2nd anniversary we are going to be celebrating our 14 years in just a few months. I want to say we raised kids and have had a very blessed life. It has had its ups and downs but in the end any relationship you want is worth fighting for. It was hard at first but he is the same man I fell in love with and I would not change a thing. He said I could divorce him because he thought he would be a burden but I told him Hell No I did not marry you for your legs!! I am the bread winner and sometimes the money is very tight. I have opened my own business with his 100% backing and I feel sometimes like I let him down. I am not making as much as I was before at my old job but it is just a few months old my new business. He always says its ok and it will all work out. I think ladies if you love him YOU LOVE HIM and it doesnt matter wheelchair or not. I am blessed because he can help with dishes and laundry and he does so much more that he amazes people and me everyday. He is a T10 so he has more use than quads but being in a wheelchair is all the same. He and I have an open line of communication. If he is upset or I then we talk about it. If we are to upset or something hurts to much we will say give me a few moments and then come back and talk. Communication being honest and open is very important. Everything is not going to be rainbows and sunshine but hey that is the same in any relationship. Love is love and if you are one of the lucky few to find true love keep him/her regardless of the status of their bodies!

  22. zoltan verdon

    As a man born paralysed from the waist down with Spina Bifida my physical condition is obviously somewhat different from somebody who has quadriplegia but anyhow here it goes. i have been with my ablebodied partner for over 12 years & while we have an extremely close relationship i can assure you that she has never been my carer and, further more i would never allow her to be because i think once you allow the woman you are with romantically & sexually to participate in your personal care, any & all sexual, romantic mistique will very quickly evaporate. It is bad enough that the majority of ablebodied people feel an inherant sympathy for people with physical disabilities, but allowing your ablebodied partner TO EFFECTIVELY become your carer, conclusively cements that sympathy & effectively destroys the entire romantic, sexual element of the relationship. I mean think about it – do you really want to have sex with the individual who just moments ago helped you to take a piss or get dressed? If your answer is yes i dont know where your head is but you have no concept of what a romantic relationship is supposed to be like. The woman in question is being used as a proverbial dormat who has allowed himself to wither away and wants to take this woman down with him. My message? GET OUT NOW.

    TINA let me leave you with this final thought from the Rolling Stones Ruby Tuesday



  23. Jessy Shaw

    I was in a rollover car accident here in Warminster, PA and am a C7-C8 paraplegic for the better part of two years. It has been a long road but I knew I did the right thing in marrying a nurse. My husband has been so caring and considerate for me. I’m pretty good at handling myself and my current job allows me to work from home. Our only issue is transporting the wheelchair. We are thinking about looking into wheelchair lifts for those long journeys.

  24. Kristine

    My fiancé was injured in a diving accident in 2014. Complete c4,c5. He has only head and shoulder movement. Since the accident he has been in and out of hospitals and rehabs. I quit my job to be with him every day. I could never imagine abandoning the man I love so deeply. He’s now been home for over a month and I was his sole caregiver. It was difficult but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. He learned to give hugs with his face and neck and they were the most special hugs ever. Every day with him was truly a blessing. The hard part is his family never really liked me because I did not follow their strict baptist beliefs when they themselves were hypoctites. It never came between me and Russ but somehow his family got to him the other day. On a Friday Russ was rushed to the er for infections at his trach site and a Uti. Till I got to the er he suddenly thought I had him committed there and he told me to get out and that he doesn’t love me anymore. He’s still in the hospital and I’m in the process of moving out of his house. I haven’t heard from him but his one brother does keep in touch with me. His other brother is moving in to take care of him when he gets home and I’m just totally devistated along with being so incredibly heart broken. This was a man who use to thank me on a daily basis for never leaving him and thanking me for keeping him alive. Now there’s nothing. He won’t even talk to me and has it that I can’t even see him at the hospital. This man has been my life, my everything. I gave up everything to be with him and I’d do it again and again. How could he do this? How do I move on? Any incite from anyone would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for listening

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