I am 39. My spouse is 50. He recently suffered a diabetes related illness that has left me in a caregivers role. Any advice from vets would be so appreciated. This is very new and a little overwhelming. Trying to help him while manage my emotions surrounding the fact of choices that were made that lead to his illness. I hope that doesn't sound bad, but it's a struggle, and my in-laws, his 4 sisters, expect me to monitor and take care of his every move- even though there is nothing intellectually wrong with him. How do you balance spouse and caregiver without having your spouse think you are treating them as a child? This is for illnesses where the person is capable of Caring for him or herself, but chooses not to. Also, how do you have conversations about self-care? He has incontinence issues that cause him to defecate on himself, and the smell has wrecked havoc on our house. It is making me physically I'll. Any tips on dealing with smells and an incontinent loved one would be greatly appreciated.

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Welcome to the group, 1nhuff. I'm hoping the moderators will put this in the questions category so you'll get more answers. I am so sorry about your husband. I understand the resentment you're feeling. When someone makes poor choices, it doesn't seem fair that other people should have to pay for them, also. It can end up being like that.

Are you still able to work? I hope so. You need a life outside of what you're going through at home. How much can your husband still do for himself? Does he still have his limbs, sight, and kidney function? Tell us a bit more about his limitations and you may get some ideas of things to do.

It is difficult balancing being a caregiver with any other role, particularly a spouse. How can you change a diaper one moment and want to be intimate the next? I know it is challenging. I hope that people taking care of spouses will join the conversation.

There are some ways I've found to help with odor in the house. The most important thing is getting smelly things out of the house quickly. Some things you may want to throw away. Other things will wash out. For urine odor I use vinegar. Other people have some very good tricks there.

Really just want to say welcome. You are in a good place to vent about what is going on.

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