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Do you feel physically tired some or most days while caregiving? I've been reading a lot about adrenal fatigue and I think a lot of us may have it from caregiving. In addition, do most caregivers take vitamins for themselves? Any tips for more energy?

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Ba8alu and emjo23 thank you for reading and responding i really appreciate it.
My mom only agreed to going to a regular doctor 2 weeks ago after years of refusing to even trust any dr in the country except for her general practitioner, who cant do much other than refer her and make sure that the little stuff is taken care of. At least I can say that the process of getting help has started. I am awake now because she saw my sister crying behind the fan in her bedroom. Yes, I still sleep with her and she has been referred to a psychological elvaluation and the drs at the hospital said that there could be many causes for her hallucinations. (Just now, 10 minutes ago) she admitted and accepted that she was sleeping and hence dreaming or having a nightmare.

My mom had a traumatic childhood, got bullied at work, got cancer and then lost her husband. The asthma and sleep apnea and or narcolepsy might have caused a lack of oxygen to the brain and or a sideeffect of all the medicaions she is on. As we live in Scandinavia things are a little different here and things take time. As for me coffee with friends, going to work,going to the gym etc seems so far away. I know i need it for my own mental health and wellbeing. I will go and do something for myself soon. I just need to get over this guilt of leaving her alone.
I am in the few weeks that she has been on antidepressants/antipsycotics seen changes in her.less hallucinations and she admits that they arent real. Its been almost 3 weeks of taking Risperdal and a sleep aid, which has not let her sleep at night, but given my sister and i a few hrs of sleep too which we appreciate very much.
we are in the process of getting help...but it is a process that i have to walk through with my mom and not drag her through. After her hospital visit she has been referred to several clinics for follow up on her cancer, asthma, sleep disorders, hallucinations etc. I have faith that she will be ok and since i have seen such improvement in the last couple of weeks i am so grateful and happy that there is a change for the better and that she is willing to accept help (because i know she must be extreme exhausted to ask for help) as soon as the ball starts rolling on the referrals we can slowly move back to "normal" life...where i can move out...have a life...go out for coffee, date, live...i am 37 and i do not date because of my current situation. She wants me to live my life...but her condition wont allow her to let me do so right now...so i will wait.


She has been there for me for every single surgery, fever, cut and bruise. I feel it is my turn. In the last month we have gone from a woman showering in a t-shirt to acknowledging that what she just saw wasnt real. Last month she sat on the edge of her bed the entire night to warn me that there were people in the room who were doing mean things to each other.
I think the shocker for me was when we had one of the consults with the drs at the hospital was that the hallucunations started when I was away abroad at college years ago. I moved back home in 2009 that means at least 5 years of this. What scares me the most is that, thinking back on my childhood, my mom has never been a sleeper. She would always be 1/2 sleep but always be awake if we walked past her bedroom to use the bathroom. I am thinking; what if my mom never slept and has been managing this for years and when the cancer came she couldn't anymore?
I am lucky to have at least one of my sisters who helps me and "sees" me as we are going through this together. I am sorry for ranting but its 0509am and my brain is not at a 100%. Thank you for your advice. You guys really rock.
~O
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and I would add, get some counseling for yourself so your mother's feelings don't affect you so much. You need to go out with friends for coffee and be able to relax and enjoy it, or your own health - mental and physical - will deteriorate. As they say on planes - the caretaker - parent in that case - puts on the oxygen first and then puts in on the child. Does sound like you mum needs help. It is not normal that she cannot sleep alone because she has lost her husband or that she has hallucinations.
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Have you told the docs about the hallucinations? They are a symptom. Has your mom been seen by a geriatric psychiatrist? If not, get her seen by one.
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I am new to thos forum and I have to say that reading the posts has given me hope and a sense that I am not alone in this.
I have a mother who is depressed, anxious, diabetic, has hypertension, breast cancer survivor and is asthmatic. She became a widow last year when we lost our dad and she has not been the same since. She has refused going to see a dr for years and we have recently (for the last year and a half ) found thay she is hallucinating. She came down with pneumonia about a week and a half ago and she asked me to call an ambulance for her (which was a major step for her) because of her anxiety I lived with her in the hospital. I slept in a chair next to her bed. Pnumonia was a blessing in disguise because i told the drs everything thats been going on and they ran all kinds of tests on her so now we know that atleast there is not cancer spread or bleeding in her brain.

We are 4 siblings I am the second oldest my younger sister helps me very much. It is the oldest (who has his own life and family) and the youngest who do not do their part at all. My sister and take turns sleeping with mom because she cannot sleep alone, since she became a widow due to being scared and or lonely.

The hard part is dealing with the hallucinations which she thinks are real and her frustration of us not seeing them. She does not entertain the hallucunations when people are over and she acts "normal"

I am sorry for the long post but I feel that when I read your posts i know i am not alone and that this is something that I can actually handle.
I am just very tired and I am scared to leave my mom alone for a few hrs as she is scared. I feel guilty going out for coffee with my friends. How do you balance being a caregiver as well as living a normal life? At this moment the only time I am alone is when i am in the bathroom and sometimes she comes in while i am in there.

I need help with balance.

Thank you.
~O
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When did you start getting that feeling of fog in your head...isn't that the weirdest thing.... and it never goes away....the lack of sleep perpetuates it. Unless you have had it no-one understands it and then they all say they have a foggiest too but I know it is not the same. Wishing you the best and hope you can get sleep too!
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The only time I take vitamins is if a blood test comes back that I am low on a certain vitamin.... otherwise all we are doing is [ahem] peeing it out. Have your B12 checked, being very low on that can cause you to feel like you are dragging.

Yes, my brain feels like I am in a fog... the only time I am not in constant worry about my parents is when I am at the office. And the lack of sleep, I don't think I have had a full night's sleep in the past six years since I started being my parents *driver*... my parents are still independent at 90+ living alone, but I refuse to help with yard work and household cleaning [I just can't at my age maintain two separate houses]... my parents can easily afford to hire someone.
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Oh I was diagnosed with severe adrenal fatigue for many years now. I have been to so many doctors but cannot seem to Ledbetter. Have tried EVERYTHING...makes me upset. I am taking cRedit of my two disabled parents and they live with me and my husband.. I am actually resentful that my life evolves around them and stops me from living my life. I am very conflicted as I am a catholic Christian and know Jesus gave up his life for US...why can I not be happy to do the same for my parents. My chronic insomnia for 17 years has robbed me of a lot of compassion, emotion. I am in a constant brain fog all day literally feeling like there is something in my head slowing me down.. constantly fatigued, foggy and depressed...hate it so much and I just want to be able to sleep so I can get well and care for my parents with joy. Thank you for listening.
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Yes...always so tired. It's depression. It's a daily fight.
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Mishka, what you wrote is so true. Many of us, including myself, do have a low-level depression. I feel fine when I wake up in the morning, but when afternoon hits, I am so tired. The more I interact with my mother, the tireder I become. Much of what I do in the morning is just maintenance. I do the same things every morning. When I listen to my mother, it's the same things over and over. I feel myself get more tired as I listen.

I believe my depression is more boredom than anything else. When we're young, there are so many things to do. I haven't figured out how to do old yet. It used to be easier when I was married. It is boring, as well as stressful, to be alone and be a caregiver.
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I find it tiring to be always waiting around until my husband is ready to do something. He will complain of a problem, and when I suggest a solution, he will sigh as if I suggested shoveling horse manure. It's not the disease. He has always been like that. I feel trapped and futile.

My therapist tells me to "welcome wholeheartedly whatever arises." I can't always do that, but when I can, at least I don't waste energy wishing things were different. Oh, yeah, I almost forgot. LAUGH whenever you can.

I bet most of us are tired a lot. Having someone follow you around makes you edgy and tense and therefore tired. So does interrupted sleep.
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I think a lot of us are dealing with low level depression on top of everything eles. Maybe a job hazard. I am going to look into some vitamin supplements. And that diet, Christina, that sounds good! I have so little will power though. I just ate a huge box of spree last night at 3 AM -WHY?!?! - like I needed that sugar rush on top of insomnia. (I yelled at my husband in the morning for buying it for me for Mother's Day - I had been off sugar for a little while but if it is there----well---he doesn't get it)
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Whitney, make sure you eat whole grains and carbs to calm your adrenals;) Quinoa, brown rice, oatmeal, and sweet fruits, like apples, mangos, pineapple, watermelon. I suggest looking at Haylie Pomroy's new book called "The Fast Metabolism Diet" which includes this hint as phase 1 of the diet. Add moderate amount of proteins, and foods rich in Vitamin B and C: citrus, turkey, lentils, oatmeal. Get outside and take some walks in the fresh air. Soothe yourself in a healthy way:) xo
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I'm exhausted. In addition to driving back and forth from my parents' home to mine (two-three hours, 120 miles one way) I work a full time job. What works for me is the fact that I'm single and live alone. When I get the opportunity to stay home for a weekend, I usually spend the weekend in bed watching old movies. That's how I reboot.

Yes, fatigue is a real problem for caregivers regardless of their vocational status outside the home.

I don't notice and improvement with vitamins. What works best for me is to reboot in my comfortable bed with Turner Classic Movies and On Demand.
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