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How do you accept and remain patient and respectful when one or both parents have alzheimers? Think my dad has it worse cause he is almost 87 years old. It just hurts and very frustrating at the same because he has always been a very sharp, smart man. Now he can barely hear and repeats same questions all the time and loses things. He has also fallen twice in the past month and now has to have a walker to walk. Now my mom is in a SNF from atrial fib, pneumonia and is still bedridden, can't stand up, has a colostomy and is incontinent. So, with Mom being sick and Dad, too, he is having a hard time handling all of this. I feel like sort of a sounding board sometimes and most of the time it does not bother me, but lately it is really bringing me down and don't want to be a b*@#h. To top all this off, have a tumor in my hand, possible carpal tunnel and rheumatoid arthritis and hurts all the time. My doctors are not very understanding or just don't care because the pain meds are useless. So, would be very grateful for any suggestions as am very moody, such as wanna cry, kinda mad and getting burned out from not getting a break. No income or transportation (except for Dad) and this is becoming a problem because he has been so sick lately making it hard for him to drive. He should not have to, but I cannot afford the insurance and fees it would cost for me to drive and he does not like anyone else driving. He is still able to drive pretty good, but gets tired easily. Just having a hard time handling all of this and my so called "friends" have all disappeared cuz I am broke and they are clueless and/or don't care.

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Hey, that was a cool idea JessieBell mentioned about Joel Osteen. Caught and was able to record the Lifeclass with Oprah and helped a lot from what I have seen as far as with self esteem issues and being able to help other people.
Thank goodness.
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mslisadoll,

One idea that came to mind as I read your post. It might help to give yourself a break periodically. If you take 20 minutes each day and get outside that could be a big help. I don't know much about rheumatoid arthritis or your situation. In general, exercise or stretching is recommended. Can you take a walk? That might be a simple way to support yourself.
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Appreciate all of the helpful comments. Mom is being discharged from the nursing facility to home tomorrow still not walking, hardly sitting and incontinent, also on oxygen. Just going to try to do the best we can. Also got news from the doctor that they are going to do surgery for this tumor (and see whatever else is wrong with my hand). At least he changed my meds. So, my plate will be full and trying to get the rest of her room ready and start on mine. Guess they will have home health come in to help her for a while (as long as insurance allows). Just going to try not to get too down about it as wanted her to come home and sometimes things don't always go the way we want them to as far as maybe had too many expectations as far as the physical therapy. At least they did their best and took good care of her while Dad and I had a little break to relax.
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((((((mslisadoll))))) I do agree with jessie that you need to be the one driving. It sounds like dad, if he can't hear, and has other problems should not be driving. Do your parents have enough money to pay you some for the caregiving you do? or pay for you to take lessons etc so you can be the driver. I gather you are living with them, and on your profile you say you are looking after them and also someone with depression. Sounds like it could be you. My first thought on reading this comment is that you sound depressed, and that meds might help. You are living in a very difficult situation. Your mum and dad both have multiple ailments. Where will your mum go when she is released from the SNF? It looks like the time is coming when neither of them will able to live at home anymore. What will happen to you? I hope you can fnd a way to finish your program so you can work. You have interesting hobbies. Is that your embroidery in your avatar? It is lovely.
Re your dad's moods, could you speak to his doctor? Perhaps he is depressed too, with your mum's illness and his own, and some meds would help him to cope better.
I do think you need to look at the long term for yourself. You are pretty young, and have many years of life ahead of you.
You have had some questions and advice about the lump. Please keep looking for help for that, as pain is depressing too. Good luck and come back and let us know who you are doing ((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))))) Joan
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Mslisadoll- i know this isn't an RA board, but I was diagnosed fairly young and have had RA over 20 years. I hate to see someone suffer. Have you seen a rheumatologist? I have found general practtitioners not very knowledgeable or sympathetic. There are two components to RA- pain and joint damage. Some meds make you feel better, but don't stop the progression of the disease. The joint damage can be devastating. There are very good meds now that will help you feel better, and prevent further damage. They weren't available when I was younger, and I have paid for it. Find a good RA doctor. Even if you don't have insurance, there are programs to help people get the medicine you need. As to your Dad, no one should ever expect you to sacrifice your own health. Give yourself permission to put yourself first.
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try going to a pain specialist for your RA pain, i was on oral meds that made me crazy now im on a pain patch and it works really well..
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I wouldn't dream of yelling at you. You have a lot on your plate. I am sorry to hear about your parents, but at the moment I am most concerned about you. I can tell that you are not feeling so good about yourself. I wish I could send Joel Osteen your way to convince you that you are worth everything and more.

My first question is if you have your driver's license. If you do, then talk to your father about paying the fees and insurance so you can drive his car. You can't afford not to drive. Soon he will be needing you to drive for him. And more importantly, you need to drive for yourself. The field you have chosen is one that will be hard to make a living from home. I had a couple of friends who tried it. Working from home is not for everyone. The best benefit of getting a job outside the home is that it will put energy and hope back into you. We caregivers need that.

Do you have the POAs (durable and medical) for your parents? If your father's mind is getting less sharp, it may be a good time to get the advanced directives in order for both your mother and father. They may need to have someone make decisions for them soon, so it would be nice to get them ready to activate if needed.

I wish you had someone to talk to who would lift your spirits. Caregiving can be terrible on the self esteem. Sometimes I try to imagine that I am a 60-year-old Cinderella, scrubbing floors and listening to abusive talk. It helps me deal with the day to day of caregiving. One thing that may help is to realize that your father is hurting for your mother and is probably also concerned about you. I would listen to him with sympathy and try to help him feel better. It may also make you feel better. Then I would take care of the driving needs and get out there on the road. You need to drive. Your father needs you to drive. After all the work you've done taking care of your parents, you deserve to drive to get your life back in order. So just make it happen. The expenses are not that great.

Please tell us a bit more about the tumor in your hand. Is it a nodule? Or maybe a cyst? Sometimes a lump is no big worry. Have you seen a doctor about it? Please let us know what is going on with you. It sounds like you need to do some major caregiving of yourself. There is such a shortage of cgs for cgs.
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