How can I can control my constant mood swings and irritability with my everyone including my mom?

Asked by

I have been caring for mom for about 4 years now on my own without any help. I am 47, married and have no children. About 1 year ago we added onto our house and my mom moved in with us. She is in a wheelchair but is mentally fine. I work a fulltime job. Recently have been put on a minimum of 50 hours of work per week. I get up at 3:30am everyday but Sunday. I work all day then exercise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours a day, come home and face laundry, cooking, cleaning, 2 cats, and my husband who I rarely talk to or see anymore. I am getting to the end of my rope. I have tried to take prozac but do not like the side affects and it does not help with the aggression. I take zanax but it just makes me sleepy. Help, I dont know what to do anymore. I mentioned going to see a psychhiatrist for help but my husband said that is when he will leave me.

Answers 1 to 10 of 10
Expert Answer
3930 helpful answers
That's sad about your husband's attitude about a psychiatrist. A psychiatrist would prescribe meds, and then some counseling with a psychologist could help you learn to cope with your situation. There are many anti-depressants you can try, however, and your primary doctor should be able to help you there.
The problem is, you are trying to do more than one person can do. Was your marriage better before your mother came to live with you? If so, then some joint counseling may help, if he'll go. You aren't alone if you regret asking your mother to move in. This works for some people, but not for all. She may be wonderful, but you have to much on your hands. Sorting this out will take time, but if losing your marriage and your health aren't in your plans, you need to make changes.
Your mom may do well in assisted living. That could give you emotional room to work on your marriage and take care of yourself. You would still be her advocate. You would still see her. But your life could come back from the chaos. If you have a religious affiliation, please talk with someone there. You need support badly.
Take care of yourself, please.
First of all, I would love to scream at your husband for what he has said to you! YOU are the one in need and YOU are trying to seek help for YOURSELF, it has NOTHING TO DO WITH YOUR HUSBAND AND IN MY OPINION, HE HAS NO VOTE! I AM VERY SERIOUS ABOUT THIS!!!

I see a therapist every single week and it is the ONLY thing that has kept me sane after 10 years of caring for relatives. It is a release and an outlet to be able to sit down with a sane person and express your feelings and have no judgements placed against you for feeling totally overwhelmed! Caregiving takes an enormous toll on you and NO ONE other than another caregiver realizes exactly how difficult and demanding it is, physically, mentally and emotionally. Your husband is way off on this and I am trying with all my might to be kind in my statements about him and his response to your NEEDS.

When I was going through a horrific time after my daughters birth and dealing with panic and anxiety, working a 50 hour work week to survive and then having my husband tell me he wanted a divorce, I sought a psychiatrist/pharmacologist who prescribed a medication called "Pamelor." I found out later that a woman in my office also took it because she was dealing with cancer and the emotional ups and downs. This medication was a God Send, it really was, it leveled everything out and made it easier to deal with irate patients at work and everything happening at home. As a matter of fact while on it, I was given all the really hard bitchy patients who were irate over being billed for services because I COULD HANDLE ANY SITUATION WITHOUT A HITCH! IT IS A MIRACLE DRUG, I KID YOU NOT! No morning "hang over sleepiness" it was good!

My husband got mad at me while on it however because I was no longer the crazy lady who got on the phone and yelled at incompetent people for him....haha, now he had to do it, because I was nice and calm.

I have taken all the same meds that you have and I can honestly say Pamelor is the best by far!

As far as your Mom goes, she does not want to be in this shape nor does she want to have to rely on you, circumstances have just brought this all about, it is not her fault. I know she has become another weight around your neck, but please try to be kind to her. Once you are on a medication that can help you cope, you will feel a 1000% better and hopefully able to deal with your life calmly. I am sure Mom, your husband, work associates and you....will like yourself a whole lot more!

If you can afford some help at home, I would suggest it, because even if you take the medication, 50 hours of work each week is too much and you need some rest.

God Bless You! I have been exactly where you are and lived through it!
Ha ha Katie....I just realized that my Mom's "behavior" has been sooooo much better the last few weeks........since I started on zoloft.;)
No one's asked it, yet .. have you had your hormone levels checked? You could be perimenopausal. Mood swings are one of the typical signs of moving into that phase.
SBusby, my first thought was that you don't need Prozac, what you need is a wife!. Hire a housekeeper to come in every single day if you have to who will do the laundry, cleaning etc. so at least you don't have to face that when you come home. You're burning the candle at both ends, and eventually you're going to get burned. At least that's where I would start.
Flossie, That's the kind of religion I hate! But Jesus also said leave your father and mother and follow me!

Do you have an outside job? Do you ever get to go out and have fun? What would you wish for to make your life better? Think about even things that seem impossible. If you figure out what you want, maybe we can brainstorm a good substitute!
Sbusby...paxel has done wonderful for my husband's irritability. If I had known how it would have affected him, I would have feigned anxiety and gotten them for myself years ago and slipped one into his coffee every morning. As it is he's been on them for 15+ years now (he's 70) and all is great. Twice he tried going off them and both times I threatened to leave him within a week of not taking them. They are a miracle pill as far as I'm concerned. And I say SHAME ON YOUR HUSBAND for threatening to leave you if you go see a Psych. Sometimes a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do...I think it's a bluff myself.

Mmiralla...donate the high heels to the goodwill and tell your mom that it was time. A fall could make things 10 times worse, not to mention the guilt you would feel.
I have found Rescue Remedy: a Bach Flower homeopathic remedy, works for me. It calms my heart, breath and mind. Helps relax me when my brain keeps me up at night.

Why does your husband react so strongly to your seeing a therapist? What exactly is his big concern? Fear of his marriage being exposed of him controlling you or his being guilty of something? Fear of you on drugs? Is your husband supportive at all in other matters?
I strongly suggest a therapist. Even if you go once a month it will be worth it.
Find helpers so you don't carry the load. Try Inexpensive volunteer organization: for cooking, laundry, cleaning, errands, and keeping your mother company. It is all over the country. Let us know how you are. We all feel for you and support you in your desperate call for being free again.
You need a slightly lighter load, there, girl! Lemme guess - hubby not helping? Or just resentful you have no time for him? Can you get enough respite or leave Mom by herself for enough time to do a joint counseling session followed by a dinner date every other week?

Share your answer

Please enter your Answer

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support