Wife’s anorexia

This is my first post so hope it is ok. My wife is 63 and had anorexia since she was 14. We have been married 33 yrs and coped with it until she retired 3 years ago. She has been in a clinic 3 different occasions the last 2 years for about 14 months in total and in Jan she nearly died with this illness. She is making a slow recovery but is still in a clinic and probably will be for a few more months.
This is where I feel really selfish but I am really struggling with waking up to an empty house and coming home to an empty house. I am not sure if I can deal with this much longer feel like a career not a husband
Am I selfish or is this the norm

Can you go away for a holiday, you sound exhausted. You’ve been doing too much for too long, stress can really get you down.

No, not selfish. You have been carrying this for a long time. I am sure you, like most of us dream of retirement as being quality time together, not you living on your own. Are you in touch with any support groups either for eating disorders or for carers? Maybe it would help to meet some friends in the same boat? Could you use the time she is away to build a life for yourself too? Take up a hobby? Do something for you. You are important too.

On the plus side she is getting help. She is in the right place. People do turn around these situations around. Could you talk to her councellors where she is being treated and ask their advice? Would telling her how much you miss her and want her home give her incentive to get well? Although I am aware it might not be as simple as that.

Best of luck and please keep in touch. Many people here have cared for their partners and for whatever reason had to cope wihtout them and I’m sure will have heaps of advice.

No you are not being selfish. Being a carer is emotionally and physically draining.

You do know that she is safe and being cared for. Can you find some things to do that you enjoy? I bet your life has revolved around her for many many years and you do need hobbies and interests of your own. We have a good Meet Up group here and they offer various activities so worth a go?

HI Gary,
I think our lives narrow as a result of caring. When we have a break from caring - we find we have actually forgotten how to cope with free time and what a “normal” existence is like.

This might be an off-the-wall suggestion, but have you considered a pet? When I lived alone, I needed a pet to come home to; when I was between pets, I really missed them especially when coming home from going out - the lovely welcome they give you when you come home. They offer unconditional love, are something to focus on and mean you aren’t home alone. Just a thought.