Exhausted caregiver dies in head-on collision.

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I have just finished reading the online local newspaper of my mother's small town. A caregiver, aged 74, and known by relatives to be exhausted, fell asleep at the wheel of her car and wandered into the adjacent lane where the traffic was going in the opposite direction. She died in the resulting collision as well as the 25 year old woman in the other car. This is so tragic - someone who had good intentions, just pushed beyond her strength.

Everyone would like us to be superhuman and sometimes so would we. But we are not.

7 Comments

I am sorry to hear this. I believe the statistics are like 1/3 of caregivers die before the person they are caring for dies.
How sad... that 74 year old woman became yet another one out of every 3 caregivers who dies while caring for a loved one.

Wish we all had a crystal ball to see into the future, that way we would have been able to set boundaries from day one.... instead of years later when the toll of caregiving [be it hands-on daily or from a distance sick with worry] has taken on our health.
My sister did the same thing, only she hit a house. She insisted on caring for Mother, even though Mother is hard to get along with. Now, Mother is very healthy and happy in the nursing home. Mother is 96. My sister was buried the day before her 70th birthday.
I am sorry to hear about your sister, Chicago1954.

Freqflyer, I feel like this site is a sort of crystal ball or at least a pair of binoculars that help me see more clearly. Without it, I would be flying blind. A few other sites have helped too. Suddenly things I never understood are falling into place.
i got into a couple of situations with the law during my mothers last 2 yrs of life . pill possession and later vandalizing a customers property . i never really attributed my angst to my situation with mom nor did i even mention it to anyone involved . to my surprise the very first question the judge asked me is if i was in a carer situation . i think that everyone in the legal system could see that i was pretty stressed .
oh i did stupid s*it and i fully own the blame but i WAS nearly dying from my life and self determination being on blocks for 6 yrs . my home sat in the country empty and vulnerable to thieves the entire time . it was so upsetting that i tried to just put it out of my mind .
no regrets whatsoever , just sayin you can lose your " self " and your marbles while trying to help someone else .
movingup, how true that is about this website.... I have had a few ah-ha moments reading what other caregivers are doing, which helped explain why my parents are thinking the way they do. But trying to set boundaries after the fact isn't easy... my Dad [93] still uses "I think I will start driving again" whenever I say I can't drive him somewhere.... I just can't drive like I use to... [sigh].
My elderly aunt was unable to drive, due to a stroke. One day we were out and she said "I think that I could still drive." We were in her sister's big red cadillac. I said "Here's the keys." We laughed and laughed.

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