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She has depression, OCD, and hoarding issues as well as walkin problems due to weak knees and legs. She has GI problems, and worst of all she has a UTI which causes more mental issues. Because of my mental issues it puts serious stress on me. I really don't want to take care of her anymore even tho she lives in a senior assisted living me. I am the default button for her care. How do I turn the computer off?

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Navydave83, glad you got back to us. Personally , I feel that a Mother would want their child to be happy and healthy above all eles. I am sure your Mom loves having you there all the time but if she really knew the stress it caused you I bet she would truly want you to relax on yourself. Wishing you peace.
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I'm not answering my own question, just saying "Thanks" to the people who made these comments. I really appreciate it. The head of my mom's AL told me once to get involved in a form or talk group, and I have found one. Since I can't drive to one can use tthis to talk and share. I just sshare a big guilt trip with myself. I think my mum did a lot for me, I need to return it by doing the same. And she kinda makes me feel that she need me there everyday. Not a chance, Popeye! I need to get her a wheelchair so that I can take her out. This whole thing is one great big guilt trip cuz I wanted her to be close to me so I could keep an eye on her. Now I have found that this is the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my entire life. It ain't easy, McGee. Thanks to all for your support.
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Hi Nanvydave. I can really relate to your situation. I suffer from GAD and panic attack disorder so I need to be very careful not to allow myself to become over stressed. We have an adult son living with us who is recovering from a Bipolar1 breakdown and although my elderly parents are still independent they are needing more and more help and they live an hours drive away. My husband and I are both self employed which means long work hours and low pay and NO benefits. It's not easy.

I do my best to be there for the people I love but I also pay close attention to my own needs and limitations. That means getting enough sleep, exercising on a regular basis and trying to eat healthy foods. I belong to a local support group where I can safely talk about what is going on in my life. I pad my schedule to allow time for "crash" days which are a part of my illness.

Most important... I am learning to ask others for help and to say no when I need to. AND to let go of guilt. We live in New England which means lots of snow. There is no way we can get out to my parents house to shovel every time it storms, neither can my siblings. We have all gone when we could but that accounts for maybe half the storms. I was feeling terrible guilt because my Mom, with the pacemaker and OCD, would call and tell me how she and my Dad almost passed out trying to clear the side walk and driveway. I spent the last 5 winters begging them not to shovel, to hire a local person but they did not want to spend the money. Finally I just let it go. When it snows I don't even ask... funny thing, this year my Dad finally got the name of someone who hires out to shovel. Hmmm..there is a lesson here.

Anyway I guess what I am saying is this. It does not have to be all or nothing. Do what you can and turn the rest over. Take care of yourself.
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Explain to the staff at AL that you cannot continue to provide care for your mother, because of your own health issues. List the kinds of things you have been doing. Perhaps they can pick up those tasks (perhaps for additional fees). If the kind of care you have been providing is beyond what they offer, then perhaps Mother needs a higher skill level of care, such as a nursing home.

Your role should simply be loving your mother, by phone, by sending notes and cards, and with in-person visits. You need to turn the "default" button over to the care staff. This probably will be difficult and may not happen all at once overnight, but it does need to be done.

Imagine that you live across the country. Who would do these tasks for Mother? The professionals in her facility, right? You don't have to move across country for that to happen.

Good luck with your health issues.
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Hi Navydave83, Can I ask what exactly is it that is causing you stress? Is it the knowledge that , if something happens, you will need to step in more? Or is it that your Mom, though in an AL place, is still very needy with you? You mentioned the computer- does she email you a lot? I am sorry you have so much stress. I have anxiety issues and depression (from the meds for the anxiety)myself and know how hard it can be to even do the simplest of tasks at times - throw in caring for a an elder loved one and it can quickly be overwhelming.
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