Follow
Share

I feel so lost that I do not know me anymore let alone act like myself, to point where I do not like me I feel I cannot find myself or do anything but st and now Christmas is here I feel horrible being feeling like a scrooge but HONESTLY CANNOT HELP IT I FEEL LIKE TAKING DOWN TREES THROWING AWAY AND WITH THE CLOTHES ON MY BACK NOTHING ELSE AND WALKING AWAY ON FOOT ANDE JUST KEEP WALKING AND NOT LOOK BACK I HAVE NEVERE FELT THIS WAY BEFORE.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
sandy22, you are in a very deep state of depression. Do you have a doctor who is treating your depression? You need to call your doctor's office and inform the doctor how deep your depression is. If you don't have a doctor, then call 911 and get yourself some medical help.
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

Gosh I know that feeling. You know there are more murders and suicides at Christmas than at any other time of year. Definitely a cup-half-empty time of year. So let's look at what is still in the cup? You aren't sitting in a hole in Afghanistan. You're not watching your babies die of Ebola. The tsunami has not swept away your village yet.
Still you are overwhelmed. So for today, flip off the laundry, don't clean the floor. Call the Hospice nurse and tell them you need some RESPITE or a looney bin, their choice. Just do it.
Helpful Answer (18)
Report

Pam-Your answers are usually cold and blunt but this latest one is about as COLD AND CRUEL as I could imagine. Obviously Sandy22 is suffering and reached out for some compassion and understanding from this sight and what you gave her was a slap across the face. I can only hope that she takes your answer and discards it for the garbage that it is.
Sandy-please reach out to anyone who can give you some relief and time off. I have been in your position and I can only tell you that you are not alone. Many of us have been there. While it does seem that things a hopeless and escape seems like the only option, know that a respite from the situation will give you some perspective. You desperately need a break. Try to find a way to get one. Your mom will be ok while you are gone. Call for respite care from a hospice and try to hang on until arrangements are made. Don't give up, what you are feeling is the result of being overly tired and feeling trapped in your situation. A break will give you the perspective you need to gain control of the situation and maybe plan for some regular help. I don't know whether that comes from hired help or a family member stepping up to help. Remember-you are important and you deserve better. Unfortunately, sometimes you have to go out and get it for yourself, it doesn't come to you without asking.
Helpful Answer (10)
Report

Are you feeling better? Were you able to receive some respite? You are not alone, in feeling like walking or running away. Please let us know how you are doing today. There are many people here
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

(& here is the rest of my sentence...) who care and are caring by nature.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Pam, that was good advice.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Just wondering, Sandy, did you got stressed and depressed at Christmas time before this?

I ask because since I've been here with Mom (11 years and counting), I've become depressed Thanksgiving through Christmas and then feel anxious (more so than usual) the next couple of months after that. Don't know why exactly but it may be related to family visiting and money worries.

The thing is that caregiving for a 96-year-old dementia patient at high risk of falling keeps me just at the edge of my tolerance. Then when something else happens -- such as visitors, holidays, unexpected expenses, etc. -- I get pushed beyond what I can stand.

This year, with those past experiences behind me, I've done better at recognizing the desperate feelings when they come up. I remind myself that these feelings are mine and have nothing to do with anybody else. Life happens and I'm in control of how I react to it. (This is a work in progress.)

Perhaps time will make you better able to cope. Meanwhile, definitely seek a diagnosis, counseling and medication. Experimentation may be necessary to get the right mix of drugs so please be patient. Blessings to you for quick relief in the current crisis. Please keep us posted.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Salisbury, I do not consider telling a person who is so obviously suffering from depression and came to this site for some support to call a hospice service and tell them you need a "looney bin" good advice. Nor is throwing all the things they are NOT experiencing like Ebola or being in a hole in the ground in Afghanistan in their face as a convincing
example of how things aren't so bad. I don't see the support or advice in those statements.
Helpful Answer (10)
Report

I do not want to get into a battle of words here, I apoligize to Sandy for letting myself get distracted by a side agreement.
The really important thing here is that you receive the help and support you need. It is very easy to understand that doing what you do, caring for an elderly relative day in and day out is overwhelming. Sometimes you don't know where to turn and things seem hopeless. You need to know that the majority of the people on this site are supportive and want to listen and if possible offer a word of advice. Don't give up and walk away. You won't feel better in the end. You do , however, deserve a break. Try to find someone (or several some bodies) to give you a break. The way my sisters and I handle our mom's care is to start by deciding which one of us is going to act as the lead contact person and caregiver. We are extremely lucky because there are 3 of us to share the work. My elder sister is the executrix of the estate so it seemed logical that she take the leading role. She has mom's POA and is single so she could live with mom when it became necessary. I am the middle sister and have been given medical POA. Our younger sister is a P. T. & was given POA over end of life decisions. I do realize how lucky the 3 of us are that we live in the same city and that we can spread our talents out to help take the best care of mom possible.
If there is anyone else in the mix to help with your mom, please enlist them. They may feel that they aren't needed because you've handled things too well so far. If there aren't any relatives to enlist, research what help your mom qualifies for so you can get a break from time to time. Sometimes just knowing that a break is upcoming helps you get through a early tough day without becoming overwhelmed and feeling buried in your surcumstances. Good luck with your search. Come back and update us as often as you can. {{{HUGS}}}
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

That should have read "side argument" above. 😳
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Please reach out for help whether it be thru a doctor support group and mean no disrespect
UR religion of choice group. My husband and I take care of both our aging mothers with health conditions with no support from either side of the families. Spouse has lost control of himself and has walked out on me cause he couldn't handle it
But of course all blame goes on me. I have a heart condition and also been raising niece since she was 3 months old she is now 14. Be strong for yourself and seek help I am as we speak. They need u but u still need yourself first. Don't loose that it's hard to pull back up. Bless u and I will lifting u up that you can come thru this
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Melanie7, you are way out of line writing to Pam that way. She is a faithful contributor to this site and continues to be a godsend to so many of us, and if you don't like the way she expresses herself, then kindly keep your self-righteousness to yourself.

I don't recall inviting you to editorialize. If editorializing is what we do here, then I feel free to say that wouldn't change Pam OR her way of expressing herself for anything.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sandy.....hold on...meaning...its going to be ok. You are not alone! You are apparently under alot of stress.
Contact your doctor for medical support and know people care about your well being...peace...happiness and life.
For now, take one day at a time.
Blessings to you. Please know you are gonna be alright.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Sandy, please get to a psychiatrist now to deal with your depression. Things will get better if you get some professional help. Best wishes!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Who's out of. Line I'm not. That was a sincere way of telling telling her to hang on and be strong
It was to her and meant deeply to the bottom of my heart nothing negative sorry if u took it that way if she feels I have offended Her let her please tell me I giving my support in a very loving manor
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Pam -Wow, telling someone off who is obviously depressed & using words like suicide & murder while mentioning problems she will never face, looks like YOU belong in the loony bin. Sandy is telling you where she is at & wasting her time with b.s is not going to help her. Salisbury, you can join Pam too. Sandy sounds like she is at her breaking point & if you can't be more compassionate & understanding then you both belong elsewhere. Here's a thought, why don't you both crawl back in the hole you came out of?

Sandy, I hear you. Caregiving is not easy. You are putting someone else's needs above your own while trying to live your own life. There is the worry & the stress. I am not going to confuse you with being cold-hearted. You are doing a selfless thing & I commend you. Now, you need to put yourself first. I would look into respite care. It's only for a few days but that may be all you need to recharge. Use that time to consult your doctor about how you are feeling because the situation you are in is not going to get better. There are also local agencies that can provide you with extra care & relieve some of your burden. Also, you need to find something in each day that is about you & only you. That could mean joining a gym, going for a run, taking a walk, yoga, just something you enjoy & the focus is only about you. Sandy, please know that you are not alone & it will end. You will come out an even better person.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

I know just how u r feeling my feelings of stress and anxiety have got worse these last thrèe years although ive been caring for mum for 12 years christmas is always the worst time especially this one as i lost my dad in march
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

I hope you get some help with your apparent depression. We always think of the holidays with happiness, joy but when you are dealing with loved ones that can no longer take care of themselves, and they can't feel the enjoyment anymore of the holidays, it can be very sad. And if you are the major caretaker, you will find it hard to be happy when dealing with so much on your plate. God is watching over you BUT you still have to take care of you. I pray that you will call someone (office of aging, hospice or whomever in your area) for some help to relieve your stress and help you to make a plan so that you can "find yourself" and get better. there is no shame in asking for help. God bless you
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Everyone, now is not the time to bicker amongst each other about the semantics of this discussion! This site is a God send for those of us who are looking for guidance, help and truly beneficial information. For the most part this is achieved by understanding our caregiving community. We must be there to support one another because we will all NEED that support at one time or another. Let's do what this forum does best : rally around Sandy with the most insightful info we can share with her because we have all felt that heavy burden and if not for the wisdom of others, still be laden with unimaginable guilt and pain. Sandy do whatever u have to do to rejuvenate : get respite, ask a family member for help, reach out to your elder services organizatios, reach out to church groups if you are involved, whatever it takes dear you must do to give yourself the time to find YOU again. You are not alone .blessings.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I'm going to chime in here and agree with Glowkie. These answers show that we ALL are under stress like Sandy. We are a large and loving support group and yet you can see from the bickering going on how much stress we are all under, which is exactly what Sandy is looking for help for. We are all at one time or another lost! Sandy you asked is anyone else lost? Yes, yes we are and we ALL are hoping that you can find the respite you so badly need. Please don't be scared away from here, you will find much on this site to help you. I know I certainly have! Some of us are blunter than others, but all of us want to help and we need help also. I send you love and hugs, Sandy, and to ALL of those on this site looking/giving advice and help. Linda
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Sandy, please know that you are not alone. Many of us have experienced the same feelings, LOST. Please call your Dr. They will help you. Reach out to anyone that you know cares about you. Don't give up, things Will get better. Prayer helps. I will be praying for you today. Love yourself, we all love you and wish we could put our arms around you. Let us know how you are doing. WE CARE!
Melaine7 you are so lucky to have supporting sibs. 2 of mine have expressed deep hate for me over Christmas and I spent most of the time crying. How I wish I didn't have to deal with their hate. Back home with Mother. Feel like I can go on with the support of this group and my husband.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sandy, Order yourself this book as a 'Christmas Gift': Boundaries Book By: Dr. Henry Cloud, Dr. John Townsend On Amazon you may even be able to get a really cheap used copy. It is a 'godsend' of information on how to make room for YOU when caring for others. I see from reading your history that you are caring for both your mother and a friend and have been doing so for over a year. Have you set up any resources to help you? Is there anyone else involved to help you? Somewhere in your history there, I read your mother is bed ridden? If, so you just cannot keep doing everything alone without destroying yourself. Is depression a long term history with you, or something new now? You need to get help. Have you started a Medicaid application for Mom? Once she is generally down to $2000/mo income and no assets other than a house and a car, she would be eligible for Medicaid assistance. They do pay for help in the home, including pay to you if you are the direct caregiver. But sounds like you need other helpers coming in, so you can get a break from all this and care for yourself. I know from my own experience that when you are in the day to day trenches and are already depressed, it is very hard to get started with a plan for help. I generally start by making a list of who and what I can do to get some assistance going. If I can only make one call or contact per day, then that's what I do. I get some energy out of seeing something crossed off a list, no matter how long that list is! AND, that list has to have something on it for YOU. Play music for an hour; take a walk around the block to get away and think and breathe some fresh air; if you like to read, take a book and walk to a park bench somewhere and read for a half hour and then walk back.... The first thing on your list should be to make an MD app't to discuss your situation and see if you will benefit from counseling or a medication to assist. Your doc may also be able to give you some resources for help in the home. Most towns have a Council on Aging, or the Altzheimer's Assoc. can help. My Mom gets volunteer help from the Council on Aging for many different things. If you Mom can be up in a WC even, look into Adult Day Program availability. She could go there for a few hours every day, thus giving you a break from direct care, and allowing you time for app'ts for yourself or just taking a nap. And if all this fails, or her care is too much, it may be time for nursing home or memory care placement for her. Have you ever gotten prof. help to look into all her finances to see if she is eligible for other kinds of help. For example, if your Dad was a veteran and he is now dead, she may be eligible for some money from the VA to help her in the home or in a facility. I just read so many on this site, who seem to have no idea of all the resources that might be able to help them.....and they seem to just struggle along and paying from their own money and setting themselves up for financial disasters later for themselves. I wish there were a 'resource book' out there that could be recommended to everyone when they first show up on the site. I feel so fortunate, because my parents had a trust and an elder care attorney with case managers and financial advisors to help me get all this stuff covered and taken care of...... It is for sure worth that am't of money to get an app't with an attorney or someone, who can get you started on this if you cannot get started yourself. Good luck to you.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Sandy22, I remember one year I went to my GMA's house for Christmas. The usual destination since I was born, 30+ relatives, huge house on gorgeous farm ground, decorated to the hilt, all the great holiday treats, tree pilled high with presents, the sweet familiar sound of family chatter. But that year was different, when I got home a favorite cousin that lives to far away come called me to see how my trip went. I told him, 2 came with new spouses, kind of had to hand hold with them, didn't visit much with the rest of us, play any games in game room. Several had go into a big fight before the holidays and were still cold towards each other, so they weren't up to their usual antics that spurred on fun things to do together. GMPA had died earlier in the year. I missed him so much, kept waiting for him to appear from a hallway, as though he was just off doing something for a minute. So when I told my big couz all that he said, "ah, the good old days, hugh". Before I could answer he said, "THESE are the good old days". Hugh? He said one day I, and someday you, will be sitting alone on Christmas in a nursing home. And we will be thinking, remember when GMA had that big house and we could go there? Remember that great car we had, the picturesque drive, ...oh how I miss driving. Remember the beautiful tree, with all the ornaments we made in childhood still hanging on it. Remember getting home exhausted, that dog that was so glad to see us, he sure was a great dog, I really miss getting to have pets. So, little one, he said, "THESE are the good old days, right here and now."

That was long ago, but has helped me through a lot of changes as they took place over the years. This year, as I sat home with just DH, missing and remembering GMA, who recently passed, that home-that was recently sold, with my Sister deceased, and couple of Uncles, my Mom greatly change, my Dad sick and stuck at home 7 states away, no presents to unwrap, store bought treats, I did my very best to look at the tree and appreciate it. Spent extra time with the dogs, appreciated watching them play and be happy. I thanked God for my health and freedom and home and car.

I did have a fleeting thought of hopping in car, going off by myself unannounced too, to a favorite spot by the ocean where I haven't been in a long time, just to clear my head. I'm not sure that means you're nuts, (if it does then I am too), but if you do go, please take car and cash and phone, ok? :-) Hope you're feeling better now.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Many years ago, at least 30, I heard a sermon about what to do when you don't know what to do and you don't know where to turn, by Rev. Robert Shuller, founder of the Hour of Power Ministry. It has helped me "hold on" until situations improved or help arrived. When faced with anything where you don't know where to turn, Rev. Shuller said to stop and Count Your Blessings. First - just stop. Sit down, clear your head, give yourself a few minutes. Second, stay in the present - right here and right now. Third, look at anything that you CAN control or what you DO HAVE as resources. Taking these actions help break the downward chain of thinking in our brains and then refocus on any positive situations at hand. THEN, look at where you are and what YOU CAN DO. Sometimes all you might be able to think about when dealing with an elderly loved on is that they are still alive while many friends have lost their parents at a much younger age; you have a roof over your head and funds to put food on the table; you have family who still want to come and visit rather than some families where the elderly or infirm are left out of things along with the caregiver; and, on here, you have people who read/listen, have been there and done that, and understand at a deep level your situation. Yet, these same people are able reach out to you to point to resources, action plans, and other ways in which perhaps you will be able to make your situation more tolerable.

If you have given your CAN DO or DO HAVE lists enough thought you will most likely come up with a number of things you can do to make things better. The action is up to YOU. It is rare that someone would come to you and say "I know you are the caregiver and are overwhelmed, so I'd like to take your place for a day and give you some help", BUT you can and MUST reach out to family and give them small pieces to do. Will someone come over and do laundry for you? Can you afford to hire a housekeeper? Did you have a guests for holiday meals and you prepared everything? If so, you need to STOP. Tell them that they can come and you can fix a part of the meal but with your caregiver responsibilities you need their help prior to the holiday. Then, have the list ready. If they can't help, then you DO NOT continue. Don't try to do everything and know that you are in a different phase of life. Things must change and YOU need to take control even if that means saying NO to what you have traditionally done and insisting that others take on larger roles for holiday activities. If need to take care of yourself first. You cannot be a good caregiver if you are depressed, physically ill, and emotionally vacant.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

There are so many nice folks on here but I still come back to one question -
Is it fair to throw out such stern and sometimes hurting comments until one has walked in those exact shoes? I have and every senerio is different..
I hope "everyone" has a Happy New Year" with peace love, and serenity.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Sandy,
Physical activity often lifts depression. In my studies on grief, I was taught that depression is a lower octave of anger. We suppress our anger about what has happened that is out of our control (this is a natural response due to societal conditioning). If you can get the anger up an octave and take it out physically by beating a pillow with a plastic baseball bat that actually helps. Lock yourself in the basement or a remote bedroom if you have one and beat and scream. I had this therapy with a psychologist. If you can't bring yourself to do this, then go outdoors and walk briskly with your chin up, looking at the sky rather than the ground. This is also a good healthy way to work out your frustrations and get your serotonin levels up. Get some help to come in and watch your loved one so you aren't worried while you are outside.
I quit putting up a big tree some time back. We have a small table top tree in Mother's apartment (in my house). We don't exchange gifts, we buy something together that benefits the household, like this year we're paying someone to do some work in the kitchen. It takes the stress off.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

sandy22, I can't say that I know exactly how you feel. Each situation is unique. But I do know what depression feels like, and you've done a great job of describing it.

The very first response to your post (cmagnum) has sound advice. There are lots of things you can do for yourself, and many posters have mentioned some of them. But ultimately treating major depressive disorder is not a do-it-yourself project. Certainly not a do-it-alone project. I hope by now you have contacted a mental health care professional. Please let us know what is happening.

I'm sorry I don't recall your other posts. Is your loved on on hospice? If so, please take advantage of their respite program. If not, I hope your therapist can help you find other ways to get time to yourself. You need a break!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Whoa, folks. Why this beating up on poor Pam? She simply illustrated how we sometimes need to mentally step away from our problems to put them in perspective. Yes, sometimes things are bad, and sometimes we are overwhelmed. But things could always be worse. Remembering this can sometimes be a blessing. It's okay to ask for help. It's okay to say, "I've reached my limit." Pam pointed this out, and she meant it kindly. Take her advice in the spirit it was given.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

oh I get it.....when my father starts ranting about the news or something he saw on TV, he yells.....I was in an emotionally abusive relationship years ago so I can't deal with that....I wish I was a turtle in those moments so I could slide my head into my shell and get away....and at the holidays, it's worse....like on thanksgiving.....my brother invited me and my dad down to his family's house for dinner....dad didn't want to go....I wanted to go, but I also didn't want to leave dad alone....so I opted out and bought two turkey tv dinners for us.....then for Christmas, dad just doesn't care about it.....however, I was born on Christmas eve, so I naturally love it.....we ended up not decorating much...and since I am also unemployed, not many gifts either....was so depressing....plus my unemployment ran out in july and my savings is down to almost nothing....next step is to pull my IRA....this has been such a test of my faith....I am so tired.....I just want this nightmare over
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Wow, there are so many great posts and suggestions here.

Here is my brief story about going to a therapist, a licensed clinical social worker. He was so experienced, he had see it all before, my story (which was really out there) didn't faze him in the least. He gave me so much good advice, and so much self-confidence. Thanks to him, I was able to take rather spectacular action that I have never regretted. I had only one question: why did I wait so long? Why didn't I do this twenty years ago? I still see him whenever things get weird. We are good buddies and he always helps me.

So, I would say to anyone: Don't wait! Don't do what I did. Go get help NOW!
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.

Ask a Question

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter