Husband is getting worse again - not sure how to handle

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2005
Husband is getting worse again - not sure how to handle
Fri, 02-01-2013 - 9:13pm

My husband is 53 y/o and is an exercise bulimic.  He eats but his foods have little nutritional value and he exercises away any calories that he takes in.  He was hospitalized for a few days a couple of years due to passing out.  Doctor diagnosed him as being malnourished and called in a psych consult.  Psychiatrist gave him the anorexia and bulimia diagnosis.   He referred my husband to a psychologist and a nutritionist.  His general doctor has a lot of training in psychiatry so she handles his meds and checks his bloodwork regularly.  He was doing pretty well until recently.

My brother died in May very unexpectedly.  Then my dad got critically ill in June.  In October, his mom had heart failure while driving and had to have a pacemaker.  There were complications from that.  Then in November, my dad had an accident, was hospitalized, caught pneumonia, and had a massive heart attack.  Dad passed away three weeks ago.  And during this time, our daughter has had two miscarriages.  So we've been under a great deal of stress.  Me more than him as I'm the primary caregiver of the four elderly parents.

I've asked him how his last doctor visit went.  He is still anemic but said all else was fine.  I can tell he's loosing weight again.  And tonight I just listened to him ride the exercise bike for a full hour.  Today he has eaten a boiled egg, a piece of toast, a gallon ice cream bucket of iceburg lettuce and a carrot, a sweet potato (no butter or sugar), a piece of fish - baked - no butter, another gallon ice cream bucket of lettuce, and a carton of sugar free jello.  This is his normal diet.  So today, he's definitely burned more calories than he's taken in.  When I mentioned it to him, he just brushed me off.  Oh and he's choosen to quit his anxiety medication.

I am grieving for my daddy and need a husband that can support me but I can't turn to him for fear I'll send him back to the bike.  I want to talk to him about a issue that I have with him and the garage but I can't.  Right now, I'm having to walk on eggshells trying not to upset him.  I just think I'm gonna take an Ambien and go to bed.  I need all this to just go away!!

Any input you can give me would be appreciated.

Community Leader
Registered: 10-22-2001




iVillage Member
Registered: 01-17-2013

Are you on his HIPAA? Can you call his doctor and ask for help? Have you tried calmly telling him you notice he is on his bike more and is losing weight and that you are concerned?

I'm sure you must be stressed to the max. Be sure to take care of yourself because this kind of stress can cause real health issues.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2005
My husband has changed his consent forms - I cannot speak to his doctor. And I have tried to talk with him. He swears that he's not riding anymore than usual. He also thinks he's eating fine. He doesn't think he's loosing weight. He thinks all is fine. I am very stressed and most days I can handle it. I really struggle on the days that he rides the bike when I'm home. If I don't have to see or hear it, I can handle it. So I'm just staying away a bit more right now. My mom needs me with her anyway so it usually works ok. But I would like to be able to go home and relax when I want. Right now, going home causes more stress so I've just started avoided it. This weekend, I've taken mom to her's and daddies hometown to pick out a monument for his grave so I am able to relax some - funny how that soundsd - picking out a monument for my dad's grave is less stressful than being at home with my husband.