Lungs, Heart, back pain and family issues
I'm not sure where to put this post, but I'll start here. How do you deal with adult children who don't care about a parent because they believe their ailment is "his own fault"?
My DH used to be quite active and then about 5-6 years ago he quit doing a lot of things. I thought he was depressed, doctor reports were always good, etc., until we realized in 2018 he was suffering from A-Fib and nearly died while at the hospital. In 2019 he had an ablation for that and flutters. It has worked out well, but shortly after that he started getting out of breath easily. His VA chart from military discharge noted Agent Orange damage to his lungs, but it was the back that gave him the most problems. He's had a bad back ever since Vietnam (purple heart recipient) and the 29 yrs I've known him his posture/vertebrae is visibly lop-sided. He was told before I knew him that his back won't get better and surgery was a 50/50 chance of success. He didn't let his back stop him from anything, until these past few years when everything has gotten worse. He doesn't want a second opinion, although maybe I should insist (??). Prescribed meds haven't worked any better than Tylenol, so that's what he takes for it.
In 2020 he started having shortness of breath and uses a CPAP with oxygen at night. He uses a nebulizer, Trelegy, an inhaler, a Vibralung, and is currently doing a Mayo study program where he does routine exercises from a Tablet, is monitored and today he finally started using his Inogen during the process, which went better than not using it.
Anyway, my question is that a couple of his sons, who are in their 40's don't care to hear anything about his health, because they believe it is all his own fault anyway, as "he chose (choses) to live an unhealthy lifestyle." DH was never a walker/jogger, and yes he has been a drinker, used to smoke cigarettes until he quit cold turkey 15 years ago, and he holds his extra weight all in the stomach (250 pounds @ 6'3"), so looks heavier than he his. Regardless, they think he brings his medical condition on himself and this year didn't even call for his bday.
There are times when I get frustrated with his lack of ambition, but I respect how hard he is working at correcting it. I do not think that just because a person is having a heart or lung issue it is only because of their lifestyle. I know health nuts that are way worse than DH is and these sons (each with great careers) are past smokers, still chew tobacco, heavy drinkers and joint users. The latter is where I think the righteous know-it-all attitude comes into play. But, because they are active and more physically fit I guess they feel it gives them the right to criticize DH. How is a person suppose to deal with that mentality? DH is 73 and I'd sure like for them to understand not everything is his fault. His middle son is totally caring, supportive and encouraging. Are there books on Agent Orange and how it can change over time? One doctor told DH the damage of tobacco use is gone, but not the Agent Orange damage. I didn't hear that myself, so I don't know if there is a difference or not.
We have gkid's birthdays and a wedding coming up so will be seeing them. Would you recommend avoiding all health related topics or do you have other suggestions how to deal with them?
Thank you in advance for comments and advice.