The emotional affects of this forum.

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This forum has been a godsend when dealing with my elderly mother. There are times I am on here for hours at a time. Others time I avoid it because of the horror stories that caregivers have to endure. Yet, here I am posting. Do others feel a needed drive and avoidance to this website? Do others feel comforted and repelled by this site that is so helpful, yet also emotionally drained by some of the postings they read?

18 Comments

Yes and yes.
Sometimes I think I am not gong to answer anymore and then something pulls be back in. My experience with my mom was "over" about 2 1/2 years ago now, but in some ways it is never over. It meant something to me to be able to share what I learned the hard way and maybe make it a litlte easier on someone else. Those emotions are what move us to love, to be angry, to be frustrated, to want so desperately to help, to keep trying to do the impossible, and finally, just to be there if we can when we can do nothing else.
I have learned a lot from this site. It is both helpful and scary. My biggest scare is my elderly mother and her reluctance to do anything. The biggest help is learning to do what I must do. Both clash and then where do I go from there.
Hi Debralee,
I totally get the
"Learning to do what I have to " part. In the beginning I gave my gramaw free rein. All her belongings, lots of food etc. I now have a lot less in her home. I felt really bad about it but it has been one of the best decisions she and I made. She takes everything out of the cabnets and drawers and makes big messes otherwise. It takes me all day to sort through soiled clothes, dishes, food etc for her to undo it in no time flat. I am now able to keep her house clean. She doesnt get as confused either. It felt like I was taking away from her. Treating her like a child. I just say to my self, No, I am treating her like she has dementia.
Another comment. This forum directly influenced some comments I made to a co-worker a few weeks ago. She is in her mid-20s, and lives with her mid-50s parents because they had some health issues (that have now improved). She mentioned that she finds they rely on her more than they really need to, and that her brother does very little to help them. I flat-out told her to get out promptly, because they will only rely on her more, not less, and her brother clearly already is happy to let her carry that burden. I told her that if she's not careful, years will go by and she will have missed out on living her own life. She agreed with me, but I sensed some reluctance, so we'll see.

My comments were based on all the stories I've read here. Caregiving is a wonderful thing but too many people are consumed by it.
Yes and Yes.

I come here to learn things. I enjoy what I call "practicing therapy without a license." Before I give advice, I have to think hard about what I think, and whether my automatic reaction is best. I have personal reactions - both positive and negative - to other posters, and have to deal with my feelings before deciding to comment. This website is a microcosm of Life, and I am quite attached to it.
This forum is a lifesaver for me because I really have no frame of reference for what is happening with my mother now. Nobody I have ever known in real life has had experience that closely relates to the problems I'm trying to work out, so it helps so much to read everyone's experiences and approaches to things. The downside is that I see how hard it can get too and get scared that I won't be able to deal when the time comes.
You betcha to both! Right now I am mostly reading, not commenting as much as I have been because we are going through guardianship and conservators proceedings. It is not because of being afraid to post because it may be read and recognized, but everything is extremely emotionally draining!
I love this forum. Where else can we come to scream and talk about the craziness that is our world? In the real world we have to say all is fine. Mom is fine. Dad is fine. In here we can say they are driving us nuts.

The lows here are when someone jumps on people with both feet. I have some foot prints on my head and I know others do, too.

Sometimes I wish more what we would do is share experiences. Like my mother did this and my father did that. Usually I just want to talk and I'm not really looking for advice, just someone to talk about the craziness to. I love it when someone says, "I know how you feel. My mother..." and goes on to talk about their own experience. It is like chatting with friends, so I'm not so all alone.
There have been many times I have tried to not post, but I am always drawn back. I have learned so much here. I vent a lot and sometimes I find my own answer just by going back and reading what I posted. I have met so many wonderful people here too.

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