The Caregiver & Dysfunctional Families: How are you doing?

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Golden, thinking of you and your sons birthday. Those triggers sure can cause us to catch our breath. I’m happy to hear your mom is improving being back on risperodal. Hoping she continues to improve. I hope you are feeling better too.

Frazz, I’m hoping your mom does better on the new med regime. If they worked before, they should work now. It takes a while to figure out meds for these conditions. Most important is for the patient to be comfortable .

CMag, I’m sure you have a lot going on with planning a memorial for your dad and the up coming surgery. Take care of yourself, rest.

Glad, exciting how your home is coming along. You will be moving before you know it.

Not much going on other than working. It is cold in the mornings with afternoon highs in the high 50’s.

My brother will be moved to a rehab facility in about 2 weeks. He is doing really good. They will soon remove the trach.

I do need to get some cleaning up done in the garden beds, pruning, etc. I keep putting it off, lol!
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I think it is a GREAT idea!
As for me, I often have a hard time determining if my sis is indulging in old, manipulative addict behaviors or if it is the disease. Frankly, I know that the resemblance to ‘out-of-it drunkeness’ sometimes robs me of the compassion I should have, and I beat myself up a lot. On the flip side, I dometimes get a little angry or frustrated at Drs and assisted-living personnel that haven’t seen it or don’t recognize it, so think it isn’t really there. Lose-lose situation, for sure.
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FrazzledMama

The tests went fine. Now to wait for the results and when the surgery is? It could be a month from now. Who knows.

I did get the Halloween decorations down and put the summer ones away. My wife has killed herself decorating to the point of being in so much pain that she's throwing up and using her crutches plus sleeping in the lower bed. When I asked her why was she making her knee worse by doing so much in one day, her only answer was because it needed to be done before her surgery. I'm sorry ladies, but that is insane! I don't need this extra stress with two memorial services coming up.
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Glad - Exciting about the house!

Golden- glad your mom is continuing to improve. I've had kind of the same experience with talk therapy. Saw a couple of therapists before that I felt like didn't really help me, but the one I have now is great. She has helped me through my crazy family issues and is helping me work through some things from my past also.

Hugs to you and Glad both. Take care of yourselves. The grief triggers are rough.

Cmag - How did your wife's testing go? I'm glad your step-sister apologized.

I talked to mom's nurse earlier and it sounds like the docs there agree with the diagnosis from the other facility. They have taken her off the Ativan (which she's been on for quite awhile), Seroquel, and Zoloft, and are trying her on Valium, Geodon and Neurontin, plus keeping her on the Cogentin as well as her other regular meds (insulin, bp meds, etc). They just started them so they are going to monitor her to see how she does on the new regimen. I'm hoping they help. She did sound quite a bit calmer when I talked to her earlier, was not tearful and agitated like the other day.

I don't know much about the new meds. Was reading that Neurontin is used off label as a mood stabilizer but helps with neuropathy and restless legs too, which might help with the weird leg movements that mom has had.

The weather here has been very rainy, though I think it's supposed to be clearing. Still in the 60s after a really hot summer. I know we need a good freeze, but I'll be in layers and wrapped up in blankets when it finally hits lol
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Golden, thinking of you.

This month lots for me too. Two years since L passed which would also be mom's 92nd bday, four years since J passed. So much has happened and I think I have come so far, but still times of sadness. Don't think it is depression because it doesn't hang on and on.

And I am so excited about getting into my own house. It has been seven years since I feel I could call my home my own. Went to pick granite today, same as I picked before but I did not have them hold slabs. Need to go through the week, evidently, but did not realize that until yesterday afternoon.

Went.out to lunch at one of Mom's and L's favorite spots. Hoped to see and talk with the woman that owns it and always works, except I guess on her birthday, today. Had Mediterranean shrimp pasta, one of my faves.

IT is to get down in the 20's tonight, quite chilly. Still waiting for landscape progress. Hoping we get a more seasonal couple of weeks before mid November.
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thx Madge - desserts, fluids and Risperdal is not bad and less crying. Hopefully the crying will decrease even further. Apparently it takes about 3 weeks for the R to be fully effective. (according to the internet)

thx fraz - I hope there will be more improvement. My niece is married to sil (referring to son in law) so she is not alone. She was adopted and is feeling rejection from her birth mother, as well as her adoptive mother (my sis). She has never resolved the death of her dad some years ago with whom she was very close. Fairly dysfunctional. Sis is narcissistic and, to me, somewhat sociopathic -very cold. There is very little I can do except show my niece I care and pray for her. They are in the UK so too far to visit. I agree that antid's are fine if you need them, and talk therapy is great . More on that later.

tiger -welcome - isn't it true that we tolerate stress less well as we age? I am 81 and I have to protect myself more than ever before. I am glad you are decreasing contact. There is emotional distancing/detaching and then there is physical distancing. I find I have to do both. Grieving the losses is healthy and necessary to get to detachment. So glad you are making a plan to move on. It is never too late to lessen the pain and plan a better life. You will get support for that here.

cmag - sounds like things are working out better.

linda- good idea for decorating. I am into very, very, very simple these days.

Youngest son Gordie's 40th birthday tomorrow and I am feeling it this year. Getting a few flashbacks to 16 years ago. So these days are slow, and as comfortable as I can make them, I just have to feel the feelings. This too will pass - until the next trigger.

Speaking of talk therapy. my current therapist is the best I have ever had. I have gone for counselling off and on all my adult life depending in life's ups and downs. A couple of counselors were not good, the others, varied but I got something from them. This one "gets" me and my various loved ones very well and I am dealing with some childhood stuff. One problem I have had with counselors is that I have very good coping skills and function at a high level so that after a few session they think I am fine, when, in fact I still have important unresolved issues. As a result, I am rethinking moving away from here till I have gotten further along in therapy. I really don't like the winters, but I can find a way to survive. Once it hits the very cold temperature I prefer not to stick my nose outside the door, or go away for a month or so.

Speaking of snow, it is melting today Thank goodness!!!!
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Welcome, Tiger55, it sounds like you're doing the right thing in decreasing contact with demanding family if they are stressing you out. You deserve to be able to have a life too and take care of yourself.

Antidepressants aren't anything to be ashamed of though if your depression is as a result of a chemical imbalance. However, it sounds like your feelings could also be just the normal grieving process, in grieving the years lost, etc. A good therapist could help you too to be able to work through those feelings of grief and burnout and plan for moving on going forward. I find talk therapy very helpful in dealing with my stressful family situations too.
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Cmag, it's good that your step-sister realized she'd been off and apologized for it - emotions cause us to say things we normally wouldn't at a time when others are the most vulnerable. It may be that Mrs. Cmag is trying to control the little things (decorating) because the bigger things (her health) aren't all in her control. In any case, Hopefully she'll realize that with your dad's memorials and her surgery, everything needs to be streamlined some. I've learned that some nice scented pillar candles, a pretty centerpiece (nothing perishable) on the kitchen and dining tables will set the season mood without a lot of fuss.
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Obituary came out today for my dad. Step-sister apologized for not being a nice person recently. That was nice.
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Caught between my disabled niece's needs & my mother's demanding nature. (I'm turning 62 years old myself, so I find myself less able to tolerate stress). Slowly decreasing the contact I have with family. But in retrospect, I've spent my entire life without any social circle or simple enjoyments, in order to care for family. I worked a full time day job, & did their therapies each evening. (It never occurred to me that I would burnout someday). Recently I feel surges of anger or sorrow when I think of how I missed out on normal things. The stupid doctor just wants to give me anti depressants, but I'm entitled to grieve my losses, while I devise a plan to move on. We don't need to be ashamed of feeling sad or to ingest chemicals & pretend we have no pain.
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