I find that among workers, marriage is often more problematic than helpful. This is especially true for the female patient. Please follow me:
1. For the young, married, female, injured-worker, her marriage is often based upon a husband who is working skilled or semi-skilled labor. They live paycheck to paycheck, and she is working in order to keep things financially afloat.
2. He is often quite young in thinking, has single friends and still enjoys youthful hobbies which the family cannot readily afford. His interest in the children and greater responsibilities is less than ideal.
3. When she is injured, his interests are now secondary at best. Additionally, she is quite “not in the mood” to meet his other insistent and often incessant demands for affection.
4. She begins to fear abandonment, made to feel guilty because she does not physically recover rapidly and is reminded continually that she does not meet his needs (or those of their children).
5. For the young female injured worker, this becomes inseparable (to her) from her pain. It is all one and the same since “everything was fine before I got hurt.”
6. For the older female injured worker, there are often even greater financial needs. Children are grown and have their own problems. He has extended their indebtedness by owning several vehicles. They are refinancing their home. He has a series of health problems arising from increased risk (obesity, smoking, drinking, etc), and he expresses his resentment that he now works two shifts while ” you just stay at home and watch TV.”
For the injured female worker, the husband is quite often working against recovery. We are not aware of this until the patient is directly asked in depth about her marriage and her husband_s response to her limitations.