Getting my knickers in a twist

To cheer you up, I thought I would post some if my issues with getting dressed. Firstly, buttons on shirts are an issue. Not only is doing them up using both hands a bit of a chore, but I often miss one button out and get to the end then have to start again. Button flys  on pants are also a pain. Getting into trousers is not too bad, but because I have an FES machine on my lower left leg, I do need a wider leg width so skinny jeans are out.

Underpants are fine, but last week, once dressed, aI realised I had put a pair on inside out! I really could not be bothered to take everything else off to get them on the right way. Sweaters are not too bad, but I look totally dishevelled until my partner tidies me up. Yesterday, I put on a sleeveless jumper and, somehow, managed to get my head through the arm hole. Much swearing, but I eventually got it on the right way.

I tend to favour slip on shoes, because it avoids tying up laces, but several times a week, I will put on lace up shoes just for the thrill of tying them up. Thank God I don’t have to use my weak hand and arm to put on a bra!


Hi JJM, 

Reading your post made me smile. Since my stroke I've worn jogging bottoms makes life easier in the getting dressed department.  When I got to your last comment I tried to remember how I achieved that goal. And I  can't remember how I  got dressed for the first time by myself.  It's funny how we forget some stuff.  Now I have some movement and strength in what was my affected side not a problem.  Socks used to be an issue but I bought a sock putting on aid no longer needed.  Shoes remain my big bug bare. My affected foot is swollen and makes putting my foot in a shoe entertaining.  Would not be without my long handled shoe horn.  Aiming to get back to work so wearing a skirt and tights are looming. 

Might have to factor in an extra 15 minutes dressing time for the first few days. Stroke recovery seems to provide us with a workout and entertainment all rolled into one. 



Dear John

Thank you for the smile you gave me in your post.

It reminded me how long it took to get up each morning. I think it was 2hrs 20minutes for me. Now its a comfortable hour or a rushed forty minutes.

My mobility and dexterity arent bad at all. Yet feet are far too far away for shoes to go on. Socks will vary. If I am not tired then they go on, but if I am tired my legs will not bend in to place. Eventually they get on, with some squirming around. Shirt buttons are still hard. This morning, being in a mad ruch (which I should never do, never rush is the key line) , I picked a shirt which has a button down collar. Now they are hard. No way can I do them if I have the shirt on, has to be before I put shirt on.

Nevertheless, things are improving. Very slow but they are better every month. 

Thanks again


Well! Shirt buttons? My husband quickly realised if he could undo the first two buttons he could pull his shirts and pyjama tops over his head! They went into the laundry basket like that so I ironed them fastened (most reluctantly as I felt they would help his fine motor skills) and now he just pulls the clean clothes over his head. He really struggled with shoe laces at the beginning but now succeeds most of the time. Yes, he calls me his batman as I have to check when he puts on coats and jumpers. At home, he checks for himself using the mirror but outside? That’s another story. Veronica 

Laughing at this because two days ago (6 weeks post stroke) I actually fastened my bra at the back without thinking!!  Nobody else could really understand why it made me so  happy ;-)

Fortunately, I have improved a lot since then, but still have a tendency to catch the finger of my weak hand in belt buckles. Yes, when you do something spontaneously for the first time you know you are improving.