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My Mom has lived with me for 12 years. My Mom was 70 and my dad 80 when they moved in. My Mom could no longer take care of my Dad by herself. At the time (I was 31), I was traveling 2 hrs every weekend to help out and I had a 1 1/2 year old and a 4 yr old. Dad died within a year. They invested their little bit of savings into my home. Mom is still in pretty good health ...doesn't drive etc... It is taking a toll on my health and I am 43 now. The stress of life and caring for my Mom is getting really hard. I have 6 siblings and they help as much as they think in necessary. They do not live in same town. I have made suggestions over past 5 years about short breaks and they say Mom wants to be home as most elderly do. I understand that but at this rate, I am going to have to throw in the towel and totally give up. I am scheduled for counseling next week.

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Hi Avon66. Wow, you've been doing yeoman's service for a long time! I can see where you could be getting burned out. Counseling is good. I also highly recommend Carol's article, "I Promised My Parents I'd Never Put Them In a Nursing Home". It's a wonderful article and can give you some perspective on alternative care for your mom. I'm very close to putting mom in a home. I think she is at the point where she would get far more benefit from the socialization and activities there, than what I can provide for her in my home. There are times I feel so guilty about doing this, but then I think of the benefits to having her there and I truly think it's the best thing for her. Parents rarely accept this willingly or without argument, but you have a long life ahead of you and you shouldn't compromise your health if you have alternatives. And if you aren't ready for the nursing home, then do seek respite care. You sound like you could use a break! Take care and keep hanging around. There are wonderful, caring people on this site who can help you through the rough times.
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What a sweet lady you are, csavage. Here you are with your own challenges, but still take time to be an encouragement to others. What an inspitation! I really enjoy reading your practical thoughts, and a reminder to enjoy the simple things.

Here's hoping you, avon66 have a good day, and know we're here to be as supportive to you in your journey as we can. As the other ladies have suggested, respite relief sounds like a good target for your situation. Take care! :)
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My heart goes out to you. As the primary caregiver for my mom over 20 yrs and now my brother it's easy to get wrapped in to this role. As mentioned above, caregiving options would be a valuable resource. Area Agency on Aging can be helpful with housekeeping and meals on wheels. Sometimes they do respite care depending on state funding options. They would also be able to refer to area agencies that would be more helpful. Do you have a church family, friends, neighbors? You are not alone. Try to nuture you with small things every day. Even a bath with a book, or even enjoying some music you haven't heard in a while is a lift.
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Lovingdaughter, always the sweetheart! I feel for your situation, avon66. Have you explored alternative Caregiving options for your mom and you? Perhaps someone other than family can assist you in caring for your mom, and you can get some needed relief. Glad you decided to write, and hope you know you're not alone, but only a post or two away. I also hope you'll give attention to your own health care needs, which are so important.
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You have us. These women have been a life saver. Just keep writing to us. They are a wonderful bunch of supportive great people. Welcome aboard!
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