I've become burned out and don't know what to do because I can barely function as it's become almost PARALYZING in so many ways. Everything is so overwhelming and it's become almost impossible to function. When II do function I'm making so many mistakes that it scares me. I am not able to use technology much at all because it's way to difficult for me. Going to support groups isn't an option because I have no transport. I know I need a break because I haven't has one in 7 years but I don't see me coping in the real world because of a bad experience I had going to a pharmacy for the first time in 7 years: Scared and have lost all my confidence.
I hope a little of what I've said makes some sense. It's taken me 3 hours to just type this. V

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Behopeful: this is from another thread. I thought it might help.

First, you decide that the money and assets he's accumulated throughout his life are there for you to use for his care. They aren't there for you (or anyone) to hoard and save for a rainy day. It's already pouring outside.

Then "go shopping" for the resources you need for him as a patient -- and you as his caregiver. Some of them will be completely free. Some of them will cost money. Spend it. Here's a list of the resources we take advantage of for my 87-year-old mom with dementia and close to end-stage congestive heart failure:

Wheelchair and best seat pad money can buy to prevent pressure sores, more easily move her in/out of the house, and keep her lightly restrained so she doesn't forget she can't walk alone, get up and fall. (Free)

Oxygen Generator. Mom wheezes on exertion, often has some fluid buildup in her lungs from her CHF, and sometimes wheezes when she's partially reclined at night. (Free)

A walker for her safety. This is absolutely essential for my mom; a safety convenience for others. (Free)

We had safety grab bars installed in our bathroom (outside and inside the walk-in shower), removed the bathroom door for ease of access with her walker and put up a pretty neutral cloth shower curtain on a spring rod in the doorway. Very convenient. The same guy that did that built a platform for our patio doors so we could more easily assist mom in/out of the house to the back deck; and another one for the front entrance that took a "too-high step" down to a more convenient level for her wheelchair. (Cost $350 all together.)

We hire companion care for mom that costs $22 an hour. We use them frequently to give Tom & I time to socialize and free us up to do the things we "used to do".

Mom goes to Adult Day Care (which I call her Social Club) once a week. (Cost $66 a week). I use professional transportation to get her there and back. (Cost $60 round-trip) She has a special low-salt diet, so I pack her lunch. Bought her a cute thermos lunchbox for $30 that delights her because everyone tells her how cute it is.

We hired a woman (professional care giver) to come in once a week to give mom either a sponge bath or a shower. ($30)

Her doctor makes house calls. It's a service here in the Chicago area. (No cost.) I actually have her doc's cell phone number, believe it or not. (The whole concept is invaluable.) (Free)

When mom needs blood work done, her doctor orders an in-home visit so we don't have to transport her to the hospital for lab work. (Free)

A podiatrist comes in every six weeks to cut mom's toenails. (Free)

By calling our county's senior services department, mom receives a $1,000 yearly grant to use for her respite care. I use this money and more to pay for Comfort Keepers.

The doctor filled out paperwork so mom could get a handicapped placard for use when anyone is driving her anyplace. (Free)

Depends Maximum Absorbency Briefs. These are great. Go on like panties. Very absorbent. Works overnight. I have surgical scissors (with one blunt blade) and cut them off her. Helps make the changing process easier.

We have a electric hospital bed for mom. Serves many wonderful purposes. First, it easily elevates her head to help her breathing; next, it has 5-foot bed rails 12" high that help to keep her safe overnight; the foot of the bed rises also, so that helps with fluid pooling in her feet and legs as well as another way to keep her safely in bed at night. (Free)

We asked the doctor for medication to help her sleep at night. She gets a mild sedative and a narcotic pain reliever 30 minutes before bedtime. Still, I'm up twice a night with her and have to get her up by 6 AM usually, but it's much better than it used to be.

If you think your dad may be ready for hospice, my advice would be to sign him up. His doctor would make that determination. This puts many more resources at your disposal. Don't be afraid of it. You can always pull him out if something serious arises that they won't treat him for.

We bought mom some of the cutest clothes ever...lots of sparkly styles. This helps her mood immensely. She wears them to her social club and whenever someone is coming to the house. Otherwise, I keep her in pretty little housecoats from Blair. Very inexpensive. Easy on/off.

We bought mom fur-lined Crocs. They're slip-on and keep her feet warm. Non-skid. We bought several different colors. She's always been a fashionista. ;)

That's all I can think of right now. I hope you find some of these suggestions helpful. As you probably noticed, many of these things are for my convenience as her caregiver. I can't emphasize the value of that aspect enough.
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Oops, I'm sorry - my hand slipped and the
message was sent by accident before I had time to edit it. I was falling asleep toward the end. I sincerely apologize.
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I don't understand when people say there's lots of help out there. How come I don't see it or am unable to find any. I've been referred to so many places and organizations who in turn refer me somewhere else. I'm scared to have hope anymore because every phone call has lead me either to a dead end or rejiiiiiiiiection. It's now got to a point i don't eñuuutyiiooooooooooiiiiiii
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Hi. Thanks for answering. It's hard to believe that anyone might care. It's frightening to know that it takes so long for me to do stuff and having to continue editing whatever you do becomes so time consuming that one can be busy non stop through the night and get nothing done in the end. I keep hearing how important it is to take care of ourselves. It scares me, I don't know how. Mom is receiving home health care. Someone comes in 2.5 hours a day for her and for me (I too am disabled). I am not able to bathe myself and do a lot of things. I'm not even able to stand for long or walk too far. Of course I give mom my hours. I am with her for 19 hours. She doesn't sleep much. When someone comes that is the only time I have to get a bit of sleep and I have tons of work that needs to be done including shopping lists, meds, doctor issues, shopping online, budgeting and so much more. My energy is very low. I will never eve ever ever put my mom in a nursing home. We live in the south and are on Medicaid and things are unbelievably bad. Even home health care bad been a nightmare most of the time. It's not ecerything people think it is and sometimes it can leave you worse off. We've had our home unrecognizable at times after someones come to "help". We've been abused and gone through emotional torture sometimes. I remember the times my mom and i have been cooped up in the end room scared to death that the aide would walk in. Sometimes the experiences have been so bad that it's better to not have someone who's supposed to help. We have someone whose very good with my mom but still only able to get about 3 hours of sleep barely 3 or 4 times a week. Even now, it's 2:30am and I'm typing. I don't even know when I'll be able to get to my phone again. It takes me too long to do everything. I'm in bed now afraid my moms motion sensor alarm may go off. As far as friends go, I've lost friends bit by bit as my own and then my parents situation got worse. There's just my mom and I and I'm scared to death. I haven't even been able to talk to anyone since my dad passed away nearly two years ago. My mom had no recollection of him passing away and has not been able to comprehend it. I've had to first tell her over and over until someone told me to let her believe he's still alive and that's helped her a lot but it eats easy at me but ill do anything to help take the pain away from what she's going through. The problem is that she's very dependent on me which is circumstantial. Often she'll get very angry at me for not being around when the aide is with her (and I'm hiding in my room trying for hours to get stuff done). Il so overwhelmed with the amount of work I've got and I can barely fit onto my bed there's so much paperwork needing to take care of. I feel so guilty for not doing something tonight to lower the piles of work in have r
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It is never too late. You take small steps until you are ready for the long journey.

Tomorrow please call your local senior services agency and ask for help. I know that is a big step but it is very important for your future. Call your Mom's doctor about an in home evaluation. If your Mom is on medicare they will take care of the fees involved for many of the services the provider determines are necessary.

As an example, if they decide Mom needs someone to come bath her twice a week; while they are there you take a short walk around the block or even just to the end of your street. Call a friend, read a magazine or just sit on the something that is just for you.

Seven years is a long time of caregiving. It means you are a strong and very caring person. Maybe you have done all you can and it is time to let someone else take care of Mom 24/7 and you get back to taking care of yourself. You have more than earned the right to get your life back. There is lots of help out there, you only have to reach for it. Hugs and best wishes!
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Behopeful, I know what you mean by losing all confidence. Sounds like you could be having panic attacks, I have them, too.... not fun at all, makes you afraid to go back to the same place. What helps me is to remember with a panic attack it will go away in 20 minutes.

Next time you are at the pharmacy, find something to distract you.... if there is a line at the pharmacy window, sit down and wait until the line shortens before you go up to the window. Happiness is walking into the pharmacy and finding NO line :)

As for your Mom, maybe it is time for her to be in a nice memory care facility... this will give you a breather to get your life back.

And yes, I know exactly what you mean about taking 3 hours to type something.... been there, done that.... I would write out something, then rearrange the sentences, then start over, then rephrase, re-check spelling, check grammar, yada, yada, yada. Then I think of my boss who does one-finger typing and never proof reads anything, what a mess, half the time I have no idea what he is talking about :P
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