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I am so very tired, sad, exhausted, mentally and physically. I do not know how much longer I can deal with taking care of my MIL...I am the only one who is a stay at home person...Not that I wanted this....She had Dementia and it just keeps getting worse and she wants to depend on me more and more and more. I have help coming in next week for a couple of hours to help her try to get more strength and active...It is not soon enough for me. My husband helps, but it just is not enough because he works all day...He does take over as much as he can when he gets home...But it is just not enough...I want to run away from all of it!!!
Does anyone else feel like running away from it all !!! It is the hardest thing I have ever had to do and I feel EXHAUSTED all the time. And yes he has two brothers who keep her a few hours on weekends, but I need more relief than that, but when they pick her up...All I want to do is sit in peace and quiet because I do not get that...so I feel like a prisoner in my own home. I love her...But this is so hard....I want to run away....Is this a normal feeling for caregivers?

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I know how it feels to be exhausted by the demands of caregiving. I too care for my MIL with severe Alzheimer's disease, and I also have a husband who is unable to work because of a serious back problem. He is currently trying to get disability, but needless to say, we are stuck financially too. I get paid to take care of my MIL, but it's only for 16 hours a week, which isn't really enough. So, we also are stuck relying on her social security to help pay the bills because we are stuck between a rock and a hard place financially. I am expected to take care of her everyday. I get one day a week so far where I can get out of the house, but this isn't enough. I am at my breaking point. I think of leaving, but I would never want to hurt anyone in my family. I do love them after all. So, my husband can't work, and I really have nobody else who takes care of her with me. We do have hospice, but I need help with every day. I even started going to mental health so I can try to learn some better coping skills. I feel for anyone who is put into a caregiving role and never wanted to be there in the first place. Sounds selfish maybe, but at this point I just don't care. So, I keep praying for a solution, but none has come yet. I am thankful for the little bit of help we get, but it really isn't enough.
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You are not alone! When I opted to move from Cal. to "look after" my mom after my dad died 12 years ago I did not realize what a deep trap I had fallen into. Mom is a hypocondriac and a pessimist and a narcissist with OCD. When dad was alive I did not notice it so much (though a lot of things that have happened in the past now come clear), I lived a long way away and I did not realize how much he absorbed. I had my last vacation in 2003, it is hard for me to even get away for a day to shop. It is not all hypocondria, mom does have physical problems, but she wants the doctors and me to make her like she was when she was 30 (no, she does not have dimentia - I had her doctor examine her for that). There is no one else to take the strain off, I am 68 and I feel my last vital years draining away like sand, which makes me sad most of the day. When I bought the house I promised mom she would have a home with me until she herself thought it was time for the nursing home or died. Now, 12 years later I realize she will never agree to nursing home, we cannot afford a live in nurse, her quality of life sucks and so does mine. Like headbanger, I see no relief in sight, I try and do things that please me, but ther is very little time to devote to my own self-satisfaction. Mom 'absorbs' any effort as her due.
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you are very normal. i am a caregiver for my mom,it is very trying and i too want to
pack up, leave and never come back but that is my mom she took very good care of me, my sisters and brother so i must do the same for her. . Big Hugs to one caregiver to another
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I also have my MIL in our home- going on the 4th yr. w/dementia. You are SOOO
normal. My husband and sis-in-law know just how much I can take B4 I loose it. Then they will step in for a day or 2 - then back to all me. I have MIL going to day-care 3days a week (was 4) but that is when I'm at work. I have hired helper come on the 2 days she stays home - so I get ALL eveings and weekends - after working full time at my job. I have told my SIL - I would like her to put her mother to bed - at least 1 night a week. She saids it's too hard for her during the work week so, she will give me a Fri or a Sat. nite but I have to ask permission!! She will not volunteer to come and sit w/her own mother!!! Will not take her to her house for a few house, etc. If I complain to my Husband about his sister he gets Mad at me and said it's hard on her cuz my MIL is mean to her and she lost their father when she was only 12 - SHE's 50!!! Why do I have to pay for that???? YES! you are normal! Just want to walk away - alot - many times. MIL deserves so much more fr her kids. She is a lovely woman- so strong. I can't give up on her. Please Hang in there- I will, too!!!! Talking - ventiating - does help!!
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Yes, I want to run away all the time. I am an only child of an only child. There is no one else to help or even care. It is unfair for people to be put in these situations. Its one thing to raise your own child(ren)...but just when we are "finishing" that task - then it begins with our parents.
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noname, I hope things are a little better for you today just from simply knowing you are not alone... thinking of you.... hugs
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goin, welcome, this is a good sight to say how you are feeling..Is there a senior activity center close by? Or anyone from a nearby church that would come visit with him a few hours a week? Some one close to his own age? There has to be some resources for him that could allow you and hubby to have some alone time??
I know saying "don't feel guilty" doesn't make those feelings go away. but at one time or other, sometimes all day long, we have all felt the same way...They are just feelings, and this or other threads is the place to put how you feel.
Even if we have had others tell us how hard this can be, we don't realize it until we are there doing what needs to be done.. Please don't feel bad, you are not alone, and we do understand. Hope you keep posting,, hugs to you.
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Oh my gosh...my husband just talks about selling our house and go living in a camper somewhere near the ocean...when his Dad dies. He has to talk like this to keep his sanity...to just have the dream as a possibility out there. I feel like a prisoner in my own home definitely with my father in law living with Kenny and me. We are retired and it was nice to be able to put on my nightie and sit in the living room and watch tv together before bedtime but I can't caz his Dad is sitting there. Or be able to go anywhere without having to pick up the wheelchair in and out of the trunk twice just to go to the grocery. But he wants constant entertainment to be taken places out of the house as soon as he gets up...or else he is walking with his walker circles around the house which drives me nutty. And I feel guilty having all these feelings of selfishness when I should be thankful for him being alive. I was so bad one night I actually looked up to see how long people with parkinsons live, wondering how long would I have to live like this. That is selfish, I know and I feel guilty about it. I do want my father in law who is kind and a good man to live a long life...it is just so hard giving up your life completely just to be a total slave to somebody else all day everyday and no appreciation. These were the few years my husband and I should be enjoying our retirement..but 6 years and I am thinking he will outlive both of us. So YES I RELATE BIG TIME!!!
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Austin I hear ya! I don't talk to anyone either and when I'm out trying to socialize (the little I do) No one REALLY wants to hear - and REALLY can't relate. I just found this site and still navigating. I'm glad there are people we can talk to that can actually either validate what we're doing or give advice. Right now my ma has 'sundowners' and she is yelling in the other room!!! LOL
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It would not be normal to feel the way you did-in the weeks before my husband died I was planning to go to a local hotel with my sil for two days and one night-I just had to get away-I was luckey because he was in the hospital a lot and had to go to rehab if he was in the hospital for 3 days and some docs took piety on me and would keep him in 3 days so he would be able to go to rehad and we did have extended insurance besides medicare so he was able to stay in longer and the last N.H. he was in the social worker had had a husband like mine so she could relate-also most of the time I was able to get out for a few hours-he was capeable of doing things for himself but chose not to when I was around so I was able to get out to our senior center to volunteer once a week and be around normel people-but what really bothered me my friends except one would never give me a call and she died so I had no one to talk to until I found this site about a year before he died and it saved my sanity. Ladeeda and Deefer good to see you guys here-you both are so knowledge and caring.
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I need all of you right now...God Bless you all for understanding and sending good thoughts and encouragement....XXX
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No problem Kathleen, there is so much going on here, it is hard to keep track of everyone and their stories...and am very happy to see you around and hope you find that you get love and support here,there and yonder..lol... hugs to you...keep posting...
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Ladeeda - Thank you ! what a wonderful person you are to step up to the plate for her last days. (jeeez guess I missed the mark on those threads!- I'm a beginner -dah)
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Oh yeah, completely normal and totally understandable. I felt like you do two years ago when I was only providing maybe ten hours a week of caregiving to my mother-in-law and she lived in her own home and we even had a lady coming a couple of days a week to help her. So I totally admire you for giving all you are giving without running away--I felt like that all the time. I felt even worse when I would talk to caregivers who had such a sunny, I love to help attitude and I would feel like a piece of crap. This was the hardest thing I ever had to to in my life, I hated every minute of it, and I have never felt worse about myself. So yes, your feelings are NORMAL and I am so sorry you are going through this.
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Kathleen, the lady I was taking care of passed away May 20th. Those comments were from when I was taking care of her. She was someone I loved dearly, had known her for five years, and a situation came up that I was able to take care of her in her last days... I am presently looking for work and have a good chance at a job that I only have to work for 6 hours as opposed to 12-18. I will not do live-in again. The only reason I did it this time is because I knew her and knew how her family treated her and I wanted to help make her last days more comfortable. She had to go to a Nh for awhile because of her aggressive behavior I ended up with a fractured leg. While in the NH she got a UTI that went untreated for awhile. I know that is what eventually took her life because she was just too tired to fight anymore... You will see me say this a lot on different threads, I HATE Alz. and what it does to a human being... But I am very grateful for the time I had with her....There are days I would love for her to still be arguing and telling me "NO", and then I know she is happy and whole now and would not wish her back her to suffer any longer... And don't worry, regardless of my next job, I will get time off...Thank you for your concern tho and we'll see each other around AC threads... hugs to you
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ladeeda- dementia progression gets better in that eventually they can't remember enough to ask questions! A year ago I got a ton of questions about her house I sold and her belongings. Broke my heart since I couldn't keep a 1/3 of what she had but enough that she now feels good and safe seeing what I did keep. Please try for more time off; day care, "Mission home health 619-757-2700" may have some ideas or people that can assist in showering, exercise, nurses, doctors etc. Our huge lesson with all this is that we are now forced to do what we need to do for ourselves as well - God knows we know how to take care of others.
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Noname, Have you checked with your local senior services? Does your area have a senior center or adult day program? Start with the senior center first if you have one. They can give you all kinds of info on area senior services. Get the information you need, then talk to your husband and his brothers about options for their Mom.
She may actually enjoy getting out to socialize and be with someone other than you for a few hours. Mom is pretty advanced in her dementia, but goes to adult daycare 3 days a week for 6 hours each day. I also have a full time helper during the day for the past year. The 2 years prior, I was on my own and ready to do something desperate! Everyone needs time to themselves for their own sanity.
Hope this helps!
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Grateful to see you here Austin. You have many things to share and to help us get thur our day to day frustrations. You have been voice here for a very long time, Thank You.
kathleen, I only got 8 hours a week off, felt guilty for complaining as many get NO time off. But I was too tired to do anything, and certainly didn't want someone talking to me.. No, the talking would have been fine, it was the questions that drove me crazy.. Ruth could not remember where she slept every night, but could remember how to unlock the door to get out!!! I miss my lady Ruth terribly, but do remember the hours of non stop questions, over and over... Sometimes I would just set and cry because of the mental exhaustion Welcome to the thread, hope you return and share. Those here do understand.. hugs to you
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I found during those dark days which I now know was the dark hole that any little action I made-made me stronger until I told myself-you do not deserve to be treated like this and by the time he left to go to a better place I was stronger and wiser and probably am better able to help others on this journey of caregiving so maybe that is the reason I had to go through hell on earth-to help others as I was helped many years ago-keep venting caregivers there are many now caregivers and former caregivers who will help and make you path a little smoother-we care about you and get it for sure,
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Wow. I am the only one living with my mom who is almost 96, dementia increasingly annoying me. She can talk to herself ALL night and still not sleep the following day unless of course I go to feed her. Then she wants to sleep! She still eats pretty good and allot - but it seems to be 30 minutes in between bites. By dinner I'm on patience reserve. Since my bedroom is next to hers I can hear her crying, shouting, talking and all this drama she creates with these imaginary people in her room . I actually take 3 days off (6 hrs a pop)! YOU NEED CONSISTANT DAYS in which you take time away. I would have snapped before now if I didn't. I actually had a friend begin this venture with me and she bailed after 3 months and she had done this before!!! I too would like to see this through to my mother's end since every day I have to remind her she lives with me which gives her great relief. Just those rare moments of joy she expresses in having me take care of her seems to make it worth it. You are giving to your husband and giving to his mother, and your well is dry. I'm almost certain he thinks he knows what you're going through but he doesn't. You probably have little to no interaction with other people-as he does at work. Your days are planned around her moods and sleep patterns. When you have the time you lack the energy to either clean, wash or do for yourself- then feel guilty, right? You sleep with one eye and one ear open - never really resting. You 'must' find someone that can relieve you for $8 to $10 an hour and hopefully your husband can afford that or your mil can. This is too much for anyone. The mental, physical and emotional toll is nothing I have experienced either but it is never ending. I never had children (58yrs now) and when people say "oh it's just like having kids" - a friend of mine said NO IT ISN'T. Children grow up and learn to do for themselves, a person with dementia only requires MORE care. Please find a way to get away at least 2 days a week if not 3. Good Luck!!
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One of our children had a very difficult adolesence. I remember once his therapist asking me if he ever threatened to run away, and I replied, "No, but I do!" I think the wish to escape a very painful family situation is pretty normal. (I also think if it were easy for parents to divorce their children, there would be a lot of teenage orphans in this country!) So, yeah, you sound normal to me.

You are venting and perhaps you don't want/need advice. But I can't resist suggesting a temporary change. If you had respite for more than a few hours at a time, maybe that would help you sort out what is fatigue and what is in need of more permanent change. MIL should go stay with one or both of her other sons for a couple of weeks. Or to a care facility that offers that option. Maybe you'll feel refreshed and ready to tackle her care again, with more built-in respite time. Or maybe this will start you down the path of relinquishing the 24/7 care responsibilities. And it should certainly put the rest of the family better background for discussions about future decisions.

Hang in there!
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You have "hit the wall" - it happens at different times for all of us. Something internally is telling you that you desperately need a change.
Does your husband have siblings? If so, you need to call a family meeting and let them know that it is their turn to step up. It is important that your hub back you 100%.
If that is not possible, start looking into assisted living centers and nursing homes. The reason you may be feeling overwhelmed is that your MIL is declining and you do not have the training to keep up with her needs. Added to that, you are alone with her most of the day and completely isolated.
As much as you love your MIL, you should not be the primary person responsible for her care. You were just the one it got handed to. Me thinks that if your hub had to do this all day, he would be looking for other housing placements.
Caregivers have to stop suffering in silence. NO ONE will take care of your mental and physical well-being but you.
It is okay to come here to vent...we all do it. However, do one thing, starting today, that will help change your situation for the better. Start by talking to the hub and letting him know that you are no longer willing to take on this responsibility and then stick to it.
good luck...let us know how you are progressing.
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I get Tuesdays off.......for 6 hours. Tuesday is the shortest day of the week. You may not have known that before. And the time between 10 am and 4 pm lasts just about 30 minutes. Trust me. I know this to be true. Now I am going to shower. My mom says it lasts for 1 hour and I say I barely get wet, much less get the soap off. Go figure...............
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Many days I would just set and think about what I could put in a small bag, get up. close the door and drive until I ran out of gas. So, yes what you are feeling is normal.. don't despair or beat up on yourself, that takes energy too. Many on this sight and other threads are here for you. As long as we can talk about it, it keeps the hopelessness at bay , a little...hugs to you..
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You are so normal. I put my running shoes on everyday. I don't go anywhere for God knows whatever reason.

I am tired of giving up my life. I keep at it so my grandmother can die with dignity at home, but we're starting year 3 and I'm starting to think that this 89 year-old shadow of her former self will live to be 114.

I totally understand the desperation. I also understand the guilt.

For me to be free, grandma must go to greater glory or she must go to a nursing home. She is happier here in her own home. I still pray for release.

I can only imagine trying to do this for a MIL. I didn't even like my MIL. I couldn't have signed up to full time care for her. I know my limits, and honestly my own grandmother who I love with all my heart is pushing the limit.

Hugs to you. You are very normal.
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My heart goes out to you.
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