When Mesothelioma enters your marriage: How to help your spouse

When you got married, you obviously had no way of looking into the future to see what might be in store for you and your beloved spouse. If your Pennsylvania wedding took place more than 10 years ago, you've likely already successfully overcome many different challenges, from those involving job changes, location changes, finances or raising children. Life is full of sorrows, joys, adventures and more; hopefully, your marriage has had little of the first word in that list.

However, even when times are tough, it's usually easier to bear when someone you love is by your side. When terminal illness enters the scene, it's a real game-changer. You had no way of knowing your spouse would become ill, and you may have been even more shocked when you realized the illness was caused by asbestos exposure at work.

Ways to help your spouse when illness takes hold

You may relate to other spouses who want what is best for those they love. When you're dealing with a serious illness, it's sometimes difficult to determine what that might be. The following are ideas that have helped many other spouses tend to family members suffering from Mesothelioma:

  • Remember there are two of you: Although you make think of yourselves as one because you are married, it's crucial to remember you are two separate people with different emotions when caring for someone with a terminal illness. The way you express yourself or deal with your feelings may be vastly different from your spouse's reaction to the very same situations. Trying to allow each person space to vent as needed and come to terms with the situation in his or her own way may help prevent stress and relationship problems down the line.
  • Let your spouse know you will be okay: No one likes to discuss mortality, and the topic may be even more fragile in situations where there's a significant chance one or the other spouse may die due to a serious illness. However, to keep your spouse from worrying about leaving you alone in life, it may be helpful to assure him or her that he or she is not to blame and is not abandoning you.
  • Act as a united force: Beyond the fact that you and your spouse have separate emotions, you are also a team that can provide each other with strong support and encouragement along the way. Couples who stick together and lean on each other when times are rough are generally better off in the long run.
  • Make a list: Discussing what needs to be done and sharing the task of creating a list may not only be therapeutic but can serve as a tangible reminder that you are still in control of some things and can work together to overcome obstacles as they arise.

Mesothelioma is a serious illness. If you and your spouse believe an illness was caused by asbestos exposure at work or in another commercial setting, you may choose to explore various options that others who have trod similar paths before you have accessed. There may come a time when you wish to take action in court regarding your spouse's illness.

If so, knowing ahead of time where to turn for support puts you one step ahead from the start. An experienced personal injury attorney is a great asset to have on hand at such times.

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