How To Survive When Your Spouse Has the Flu

Senior woman caring for sick husband in bed
Photo: Sarah Kashner/STOCK4B-RF/Getty Images

Your best friend in the world, your lover, your life-long mate, has been hit with the flu and just turned into a whimpering, demanding, annoying stranger.

This doesn't mean the end of your marriage. Read these tips on surviving having a spouse down with the flu!

Here's How:

  1. As soon as you know for sure that it is the flu that has downed your spouse, put a cool cloth on his/her forehead. Then put one on your own forehead.
  2. Keep pushing liquids at your ill, flu-ridden mate. They replenish lost body fluids, electrolytes, and minerals. Sports drinks, juices, and water are okay. Don't serve caffeinated or alcoholic drinks.
  3. Insist that your spouse rests while ill with the flu. That means no TV, no computer, etc. Well, maybe a little computer time.
  4. Keep yourself well by washing your hands a lot. The last thing you need is to get sick with the flu yourself.
  5. Don't give your spouse a little bell to ring. No matter how miserable he or she is with the flu, stay strong. No bell!!
  6. Go ahead and serve chicken soup. It is an easily digested liquid with lots of minerals, proteins, and carbohydrates and makes you look like a compassionate, caring person even though you don't feel that way.
  7. When your spouse is feverish with the flu, a tepid bath is soothing and helpful. Lower the heat, remove the covers and have your mate take off socks and extra clothing. Rubbing alcohol baths are ​no longer recommended.
  1. If your spouse is sick with the flu for more than a week or appears to be feeling worse, make an appointment with a physician.
  2. A humidifier can cut down on your spouse's congestion from having the flu and make it easier to breathe.
  3. Change bed linen often. Nice clean, fresh sheets are so comforting. Plump the pillows now and then.
  4. Keep your sense of humor.
  5. Treat yourself to a little luxury like a box of chocolates, a glass of wine, a good book, a hot bath or shower, a nap or a favorite movie on TV.


  1. Try to avoid getting the flu by getting a flu shot.
  2. When someone in the house is sick with the flu, wash surfaces with a 10 percent bleach solution or a bacteria fighting cleanser.
  3. Think about throwing out your spouse's toothbrush and lip balms or lip sticks if they've been around for quite awhile.

What You Need:

  • Patience
  • Sense of Humor
  • Locking or hiding any bells away so they can't be found.
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