I don't want to be a caregiver anymore. Am I selfish if I leave?
I was in a pickle with my own life when my best friend from childhood, who is like a sister to me, asked me to come stay with her and help with her mom (who, for several years, was a better mom to me than my own) who has Alzheimer's. After discussing the care taking schedule between her boyfriend, her and myself, I agreed. We also agreed that I would be able to use her car in the morning to work, I would get room and board and a small bit of cash. After I moved in, the boyfriend got really ugly with me. I told my friend I would rather live on the street than be treated like that. She asked him to leave (he was not good for mom anyhow ~ looked at her like a science experiment) and he moved out a few weeks later. His leaving left my day off to one, Saturday. Due to doc appointments, and other scheduling conflicts, I am not able to get a job in the morning even if I could find one (we live in the middle of nowhere) as I no longer have reliable transportation. Since January 3, 2012, I have had 4 full days off. I have no one to talk to, no friends, no life. I try to do my art work, but it is difficult to focus when I am responsible for someone who is clinically depressed, has dementia and requires 24/7 care. My friends comments, on a regular basis is: "My first priorities are my sobriety and mom", which I understand.
Now, I am feeling so incredibly guilty because I do have burnout and it has not even been 3 months! I can't do this 5.5 days a week, 24 hours a day (I do get a bit of a break on Fridays). My friend has had the flu for the last several days because the boyfriend came by when he was sick and shared his germs (JERK!). I just want to scream! My sanity and joy are diminishing at a rapid pace and I am afraid I may never come back from it. I still suffer from "chemo-brain" from "terminal" cancer I had a decade ago. I have since been offered a live-in caretaker position in another state that includes a small monthly allowance on top of the r/b and it does not require 24/7 care.
I don't want to be a caretaker anymore. I have come to realize how terribly depressed "mom" has always been, my sister, too. I am so exasperated! My "sister" can't afford to hire someone for mom (she is already dipping into her savings). I am in my mid 40's. I am afraid I will be here for another several months and never be able to leave with any sanity left. Am I selfish if I leave? I feel so incredibly trapped. I AM grateful for her taking me in when I needed a place to stay, but I don't think I can pay this price.