Therapy and caregiving.

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I have been seeing a therapist lately and for all he most part it has been helping me...to put myself first sometimes and focus more on my own needs. I am also trying to deal with all my anger and resentment at my eo nothing siblings.

The previous sessions I have left there feelng better and more empowered. My therapist is a caregiver herself to her 95 year old father so she does understand somewhat what i am going through. The difference in us tho is she has some support with her husband and her sister moving here to help her. She also has some really good friends who really care and offer any support she needs.

She thinks I should find a support system...She knows all about my worthless siblings and extended family and that they offer no support at all. She keeps asking about friends who offer unconditional support..i told her I really dont have such friends. i just have surface type friends who i go out to lunch,dinner or a movie with occasionally. None of them understand caregiving nor do they want to hear about it.

My therapist says I need to find a support system but i dont have one..is this just one more thing for me to do? How do i make people care when my own family doesnt care? I feel really down now.

I want therapy to help me function..and not have to depend on others.

Any caregivers out there who are going through therapy but have no support system like me? Any opinions?

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There are RVing clubs that travel in caravans together, some are women only.
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KatkeKate, your post is inspirational. That's a great way to plan ahead and build enthusiasm through whatever you face until you reach that point.

As to safety, I think a lot of it depends on where you go, especially whether you're in a very populated place or more of a wilderness area. From what I'm reading on a backpacking forum, backpackers feel more comfortable in the wilderness than in areas populated with people, including campgrounds. A few have mentioned unpleasant encounters with men who are less than interested in backpacking as hitting on women, and these happen not in the isolated wilderness areas but close to campgrounds or trailheads.
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Seriously, I have considered that! I wonder if traveling the country alone is really safe for s single female, I know of many that are doing it though

I am attracted to it because I love small spaces, and living a minimalist lifestyle is easy for me anyway.
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That sounds like awesome therapy Katie...need some company on the RV? ;)
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My own "therapy" has and continues to be my plans to make my dream come true. Since I have no other people to support me in this...I have to find my own path.

I have longed to live free and travel the entire North American continent.

As I know I will out live my parents, I have made plans. I spend a little time each night doing a little more work on the plan. I have milestones that as I reach them, I take the action planned for that time. (I recently bought an old RV....the next steps concern rebuilding it completely). The plan milestone had me seeking the RV I wanted to have at this point. So I have done it. Each step requires the next stage of planning. On a bad day, I just spend the evening reading about places I want to see. On a good day, I take on a more difficult task..like learning some more about solar systems or LiFePO4 batteries.

It is keeping me sane. It is giving me time frames to work toward, and events to look forward to.

I suggest, find an interest outside of the caregiver role...and pursue it to whatever degree you can. Even an hour an evening sitting after everyone is tucked in.
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I'm so sorry to hear you feel this way. I hope the comments of everyone on here helps you feel better. I have a mother with end stage Alzheimers in a nursing home and a 77-year old father with Parkinsons and severe depression. Caregiving is many, many times a soul-suckingly hard thing to do. Like you, I don't feel like I have any real close friends to talk to. I'm not going to therapy now, but for the last few weeks I've been thinking about getting started on therapy. But I mostly hope that therapy will help me "talk back" to the voice in my head that tells me I don't want to keep doing this or that makes me feel resentment and anger over doing it. In other words, I'm looking for tools that help me have more positive emotions about the soul-sucking drain that caregiving can be sometimes. I recognize that having a strong support system is one of those tools, but there should be other tools as well. Ask your therapist if she can help you put some other tools in place for now, since whipping up a boatload of new best friends is beyond the reach of many caregivers I think.
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cwillie, what you wrote was perfect. katiekay, I was thinking your therapist sounded like she lived in a white-bread world where all was rosy. She knew what helped her, but had no idea what it meant to have no family that cared and friends who just faded away. Sometimes I wonder why we go through therapy so we can continue caregiving. We must be nuts! (Just kidding here, kind of.) I do agree with your therapist that friends are valuable. I wish I had just one or two good ones. The ones I had I left in TX when I moved. I've not made any real new ones here. It is hard to pluck friends from thin air after you get a certain age. I am always envious of the people who have a caring spouse. At least they have that support! I think it was rather sad that your therapist said something that was so insensitive to the alone-ness that caregivers often feel. I'm glad you are going to talk to her about it. It may keep her from "helping" someone else in the same way.
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Wish there was a magic pill! If you find one can you let us all know.? ;)

I think you lose yourself in caregiving because you focus on another persons needs so much..you forget about your own and really begin to disappear (this is happening to me). Anything you can do to focus on yourself and make your day just a little better? You matter and are important. Dont ever forget that! Do something just for you today.

A good therapist will let you talk and listen and be supportive..it does help. It helps me to talk and have someone listen. Therapy has been pretty good so far..except for this last session. They shouldnt just be giving out advice...we all know to do all the things you mentioned but we dont focus on our own needs enough and end up forgetting ourselves.

(((HUGS)))
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cwillie dysthymia- yep thats me since a toddler... my siblings and mother resented me from birth and crushed my spirit. How does one even know what any other kind of life is? I also cared for both my parents from my 20's to now in fifties even though they were abusive...which is why the siblings did not. Dad just passed and now i am in no where land.
katiekay nice to meet you and great for you hiring someone- it is actually a huge step.
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I can't leave mom alone for very long so I spend my days online and have taken a lot of those psych quizzes for burnout but although I score fairly high it never seemed to really fit. Today I took some for dysthymia... hmm, scoring pretty high there too, and for SAD. But the last thing I want/need is someone who sits down and tells me all the things I should be doing differently (reach out socially, exercise, and my favorite is "put your mom in a home so you can go back to feeling like her daughter again" ugh!), I know all that already. Is there really a magic pill that can make my life have meaning again?
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