There are days that I just want all of this to go away, then I feel guilty that I feel this way. Anyone else ever feel this way?

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My 87 year old mother is currently in a nursing facility. This all started due to a severe case of spinal stenosis. She also suffers from anxiety and depression. She was hospitalized numerous times, went to 4 different rehabs and ultimately had surgery. This has all been going on for 5 months. Coincidently, this also coincided with my retirement (I am 60 years old). I have 5 siblings however I am the one who is handling her financial affairs and I am the one who is the primary contact for doctors, caseworkers, etc. Lately, I have found myself feeling very resentful of the situation I am in. I retired so that I could relax and enjoy myself however my retirement has been anything but relaxing. My siblings are good in the sense that they visit my mother however I am the one who must now deal with getting her affairs in order while at the same time still dealing with doctors, caseworkers, etc. with any issues that may arise concerning her. I feel like I am "on call" as numerous times I would be driving and would get a call from a professional regarding my mother. I have had no respite from this situation. I try to take care of myself by eating right and exercising however am finding that even that is not enough. We have all tried to help my mother yet along the way she has refused to help herself (refused to take anti-anxiety meds, refused to leave the house and socialize, etc.). Though I feel bad that she must spend her remaining days in a nursing facility, I honestly believe that she brought a lot of this on herself. We have done all we can for her. This has overshadowed even happy times that have occurred in the last 5 months (my son got married out of state in September and I did nothing but worry about my mother back home). I have not slept well in months and my primary care physician prescribed medication which I am hesitant to take. There are days that I just want all of this to go away then I feel guilty that I feel this way. Anyone else ever feel this way? If so, how do you move on? I am seriously considering talking to a psychologist about my feelings as this has affected all areas of my life and that of my husband's as he also retired in June and has obviously been affected by this situation with my mother. Thank you in advance.


Hi itstimeforme,
This is going to sound like a cliche, but I know how you feel. However I must say to you from experience as a carer of two aged parents one now deceased, that yes it may be time for you to reach out and get some help. Today and I sincerely mean you are not alone, I also have had to come to a smack bang decision that if this keeps on going I am going to die frankly of a premature heart attack. Miss my own family, friends, work career and unfortunately majority of life. care burnout and well being happiness I once was told there must be a balance unfortunately the teller of this saying obviously had not cared for her own. As a caregiver to parents or any member of family we are consistently going, doing, giving and in return if we do not listen to our physical being and most importantly our spiritual and mental/emotional self we will go down big time. You mentioned you have not had respite at all, maybe it would be a good time to plan a respite time as one thing is for sure if you don't things will creep up on you and I certainly do not mean any harm in that statement, but if you go down health wise, mental health wise and emotional happiness wise what good are we to ourselves or anyone else for that matter. Have you considered contacting aged care support in the home workers whom literally can come and do some of the jobs that need to be done, or the big one respite in a aged care unit which unfortunately may take a while on the waiting list. Having worked in the aged care industry myself since I was 17 now 52, nursed my father through several years of bad choices of living to kidney failure to brain damage to his passing was a relief for his poor little physical body, then came the dilemma of who was this who wanted that. I can say I am glad that you have some support from siblings as many as you know leave it to one for whatever reason. I too share a mum with Alzheimers, post cancer and unfortunately not a very affectionate loving mother a mother now whom refuses to participate in any positive sharing activities, accuses everyone from siblings to bank tellers of stealing anything or everything, had two falls in shower and even though we attend to a new bathroom, gained new equipment safety everything imaginable now refuses she is not dirty and blames siblings for contracting her dementia. I personally share your grief my dear however a very wise mediator said to me if you do not look after yourself and have time out your health state of mind and own life will drop and mum will still be sitting there with dementia bad days and her good days and probably will not even remember your missing for a week or two. Five years ago from the time I left mums flat after a diagnosis and consistent care, my own family broke down and I wasnt there for them, fell ill myself so I left for a year. I faced a lot of family conflict am back again now as mums stages are worse and progression is fast. I put on board the aged care assessment we employed a wonderful company and team we have had ups and downs we financially managed over the last five years and put everything in order before the dementia reached this peak. If I did not have the breaks I need or the days off without any assistant I am sure I would have ended up in very poor shape.
Please listen to your heart you have done everything a really good person would do but yes it is time for you guys. The help is out there and it is just like going through a early year check list and working out which provider will work out the best. A good co ordinator and aged care mediator will help you with all of it. Get some rest they will still be the same predicament when a couple of weeks is up. Take time to work it out and rest. You honestly can only do your best and it sounds like you really need a bit of time with your husband.
God bless you and everything you do and I am sure you will come up with a good decision that will help you.
Never ever feel you havnt done enough or contributed in the right way. If talking to a mediator or counsellor/psychologist helps you get better emotionally, physically and spiritually then do it. Unfortunately it doesnt go away. One of my best friends looks after her 80 year demented husband I found her screaming one day block everything out give me a pill just block it all out I dont want to see this anymore. Three weeks later seeing a counselor and taking some time out a relaxation massage a good coffee and a spill your guts time she has realised she forgot about herself. Hubby was ok still the same but she came out a new girl. I told her do not forget yourself and enjoy some quality of your life somewhere.
We cannot force care, we can ask we can provide it in some way shape or form and we as human beings take on so much of each others pain and suffering we forget we are human sometimes. See that professional talk it with you hubby and the rest will come eventually. Best wishes and you never alone.
Hey not meaning you need the in care at home on a bad level but some home help for yourself . You have done everything possible and mum is aok in home. Some support workers even work as visits to your mum and can help with in home things like helping plan your life better. I appologise for the statement of age care assessment you already obviously did this but there are home help social workers that can help you.
best wishes again
If You just read all the posts on here under caregiver burn out, you will see you are not alone! I think we all feel that way at one time or another! We all get so tired out and I know even when I'm not with my mom somehow I am always thinking about her. That drives me crazy. You are not alone here!
Anyone NOT feel this way sometimes? I think it might be a much shorter thread!

Hugs to you, and by all means speak to a therapist - or a counsellor, or just come here and vent. I think we've all found huge consolation simply from sharing our feelings with people who've been there.

Incidentally: you feel as though you're on call 24/7 because you are. You're never quite "off duty", not even when you know that your loved one is in safe hands and you're supposed to be getting down time. I don't have the answer, just hoping again that it might help to know that you are normal :)
It's an awful situation. I am 50 and work 6-7 days a week. My parents crashed and burned in their early 70s due to depression, drinking, bad marriage, etc. Now, not even 80, dad is in a facility due to dementia onset and mom lives alone down the street from me. She is holed up in the house, nasty nasty attitude, and beginning to rely on me. She's only 75 and likely to live another 10-20 years. I'm an only child. My parents have lived in our city for over 40 years but have no friends. Their problems have now become my problems and I was already overloaded with responsibilities. The assumption I guess is that my next 10 or 20 years will be burdened with their bull-shyte. I am so ready to just up and move away or take off and disappear...
I feel it that every second of every day. You are so lucky your mom is in a nursing facility. I'm not as lucky. Picture everything you are doing AND doing everything the nursing facility is. Multiply that by 3. Mom, dad and grandma for me. That's where I am. So it can be much worse than where you are. Doesn't that make you feel better? ;)

My back hurts.
Dear itstimeforme,

Sending you love and hugs. I know its hard. Like the others have said you are not alone in your feelings. I know everything is easier said than done, but don't feel guilty. You have to take care of yourself as well. Talk to the therapist or counsellor, join a support group, do whatever is needed for yourself.
Some may resent what I'm going to say, but. Your were born with the stuff it takes to care for another person(s). It is an unusual gift. One not easily recognized, not often applauded, but of the utmost importance. The ability to fight for another's life and your own at the same time is no less than super hero stuff. Although I don't have the wisdom to share to the degree that most have on this forum, Ido recognize when I am in the presence of rarity and greatness. What does this do for exhaustion and feeling overwhelmed? Only you can answer that, hopefully it will incite you with the desire to carry on. Those tears are healthy. Needing to rest is normal. Husbands and wives are still no. 1 on the list and insanity and heart attacks are not an option. May God bless you all and increase you in every way deemed necessary. Remember, you are loved. You do matter. You will get through this and you've got what it takes; even if you must get assistance. From one who thought they were drowning in despair, I've got my stroke back, with the help of the almighty and witnessing that a HERO is more than a sandwhich. Recognize. 
(((((itstime))))). It can go in a long time. You need to build in some "me" time. I am 80, my mother is 106 and in an NH. She has vascular dementia last stage but no comorbidities - meaning her heart , lungs, liver, kidneys etc. are fine. I suspect I will be caregiving for a while yet. I live at a distance (mother's choice to be where she is). Yes, there are continual demands even if you are not a hands on caregiver. I have moved her 5 times in 8 years as she was not happy where she was. I had my first physical exam in 6 years this summer. Thankfully everything was about the same and fine. I do work at looking after myself and have mini holidays with sig other, I get my hair done, have manis and pedis, have an gentle exercise routine and walk when I can (I have CFS/FM), eat sensibly, and try to get good sleep and manage stress. When I attend case meetings, I also book time for a dinner theatre or some other treat. I retired at 73 because the stress of caregiving as her dementia was setting in, and working was too much. I worked that long as I needed to maximize my pension, Mother has lifelong mental illness as well as dementia so I have been looking after some things for a long time. 

Do I want it all to go away. Yes, of course and not just for me. Mother does not have much quality of life left and she is ready to go. but it is what it is.

If today isn't good enough. make some changes.
Yup, I feel this way often. I'm 60, mother 94, stage 6-7 Alzheimer's.
Today we went to visit. They had a party at the memory care facility. She didn't like the presents-a hat and gloves. Hubby wanted to put them on her-she started screaming. I asked him to stop, no, let's just try them on, more screaming. I'm getting jittery. Mother launches into the "headache" routine. "I'm sorry ", I say. Then hubby notices that her glasses are broken and she's missing a lens. I'm getting madder. "How did that happen?" "I don't know". They find the lens and hubs tapes it up. Hopefully I can find her other pair at home.
She complains about people stealing her things and hitting her.
I get up to readjust her glasses and my purse slips off my shoulder and taps her on the nose. She pretends to faint. Yeah, she won't respond for 15 seconds. She's fine- just an actress. I'm at the end of my rope and walk out before I loose it.
I ask hubs about her in the car and he said, "She "woke up" and asked if I was gone.
What a visit. I give up.

We can be thankful that they don't live with us-been there, couldn't do that. I think mom and I both want it over.

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