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Why do I feel so overwhelmed with care giving when I know that others have a far more difficult time than I do? I know that is the case - I read lots of posts here on Agingcare and don't know how some of you do what you do.

I know that stress is perceived. How do I perceive it differently?

My family says to 'just let it go' - 'don't pay any attention to what she says' - 'you can't do anything about it' - 'stop worrying about it.'

Why can't I?

I have changed from a very caring person, happy person into someone who is uptight, stressed out and feels like crying a lot. Some days I manage OK and some days I don't. Is it ME or is it just that my hubby and kids don't understand what I deal with? If I were to explain my day - MOST would think I have it pretty good. Why does it FEEL like PRISON?

I do the care-giving. I don't feel that I get much understanding from my family. I know my husband 'cares' but I am not so sure he 'understands.' My MIL gets visits and caring phones calls - no one ever asks how I am.

I just feel that it is easy for others to say 'let it go' - because they CAN. Of course, they can also LEAVE. They have jobs and lives. :

I am even looking forward to a REAL break in a few weeks. Friends from and our kids are going to look after grandma while we go away for a while. The visiting nurse says 'go for it.' 'Don't worry' I spent 3 weeks enlisting help for twice a day visits and 5 evenings of meals and company for her. I should be thrilled to be able to leave. What's wrong? Am I dreading coming home before I even leave?

Maybe it's the gloomy weather :-( Guess this is just a rant with NO real answers required.

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As many have indicated, you can't measure your life against others. Other people might seem to handle more difficulties, but you can't really know that's true. And, even if it were true, it wouldn't mean anything because each person's situation is different.

My advice is this -- go on your break. Try not to think too much about the situation at home, although I know that is hard, but just try to get a break. At some point, you might want to think about whether there's any way you can change things. It's not about how hard you do or don't have it, but that you are being weighed-down. And, honestly, the grey weather does make us feel this all the more keenly. Try to be really honest with yourself whether you'd felt this down during the sunnier weather, too. If that's the case, you probably need more help than you've had, maybe more breaks than you've had.

I was just looking at Medicare and supplemental insurance about visiting nursing care, just in case I need a nurse to help with my mother. It does say it's covered but doesn't say how much, but maybe an option is to get a nurse or a senior-sitter more often, if it's covered or if it's cheap-enough for your situation.

Also, I know it might seem cruel to ask if you have outside activities. Your reply would be that you don't have time, quite likely, but you really need something to look forward to to help give you some breaks. Each person is different, where some find they need to get out, maybe going to something like art classes, others just hide in the back room and listen to relaxing music to get their breaks.

Also people probably don't really understand what you're going through, but they're probably trying. When my mom took care of my grandmother with Alzheimer's, it was in the days when we really didn't understand it, yet, and none of her siblings would ever help out. My parents are from the era where men worked and women stayed home and my dad wasn't a particularly feelings-oriented sensitive type, but even he realized my mother needed a break.I think he pretty much "made" her go to ceramics classes, once a week, while he watched her mother. I'm pretty sure it was mostly his doing. Young as we were, even my brother and I thought she was going to end up being carted-off somewhere, because she was obviously totally stressed-out.
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Sorry to hear that things are so difficult for you...it's been a long journey for you. I can't tell if you and your husband have had a good talk by yourselves, or possibly with a counselor. It sounds like you should reach out to your husband, religious counselor, department of aging, doctor or someone you can ask to help make some changes to relieve your feelings of desperation. It is good that you have expressed your feelings for the first time. Go from here to someone in your community who can help you in a more direct way. Good luck.
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Pensive .. you've taken the first step. We can't fix what we don't know or acknowledge is broken. The next step is to find ways to help YOU. Take care of you .. it's not possible to care for another, when you're broken. Then, you might want to consider finding another home for mom and dad. You're over your limit. It's okay to admit it. Find the problems, find the solutions. It's NOT easy. But, you've already proven that you're strong enough to do what you need to do. This is "simply" (I know, there ain't nuthin' simple about it) one more step in the process.

If you'd like more input, I'd suggest starting your own thread (post a link here), so more and more people will respond. DO keep us posted and let us know how it goes!

*hugs*
LadeeC
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I am another caretaker. I take care of my parents. I am the oldest of my siblings, the one that supposedly has an answer to anything and everything. I started taking care of my parents 17 years ago. First it was financially, then everything else. Eight years ago they moved in with my husband and I into our house. That's when all my problems escalated. My father is schizophrenic and my mother depends a 100% of what I say or do. My mother broke her hip two years ago and now walks with a walker and my father has now lost most of his sight. I have two siblings, but they do not help until something happens to me. My sister lives 10 minutes away from me and my brother lives out of the States.
My mother's personality has changed so much I can hardly see my real mother in her. She has become extremely demanding and sometimes she can say mean things to me. My dad is quite most of the time, but he is the wild card from time to time.
My home has never been the same, I had a small episode of a nervous breakdown and then my husband went through a short period of depression. I love my husband so much, and he has been such a gentleman and so helpful, but I think he is at the end of the rope with this situation. I am not the person I used to be; from a happy, sweet, caring, outgoing, full of life, I have become irritated, sad, anxious and insecure and I even sometimes have a mean answer to my parents. I am trying to cope with everything and to go back to whom I used to be, but it's a constant battle.
I had to leave my job because my mother would call me 10 to 18 times a day with anxiety attacks or panic attacks and would drive me nuts. I had to leave the office and come home to find her better because she knew I was on my way home.
I feel my parents, (specially my mother), breathes because I breath. I do not know what to do anymore. I feel I'm inside a prison with no escape.

This is the first time I dare to express my feelings and let them out.

A desperate caretaker.
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Sweety, its not the gloomy weather that has you down, believe me. I also am the caregiver for my MIL. She also takes the life right out of me. The way I cope is to make sure I do something for MYSELF everyday. Its just small, like spending time on the comp or working outside, but I do it for me. I believe everyone was put on this earth for a reason. I believe my reason is to take care of people. And Im good at it, as Im sure you are great at your caregiving also. And my husband doesn;t "get it" either. Pat yourself on the back and realize where everyone would be without you!!! Your a great person for doing what you do and you deserve praise for it. A lot of people would walk away from it or give up. So congratulate yourself for the strong, caring wonderful person that you are. Others may not tell you these things but you know you are. And that makes you a great person. Hold your head up and be proud of yourself. Good Luck sweety!!!!
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Oldcodger - I'm so sorry to hear your MIL brought you down so far. Please stay on here and let us know when she goes in and how you feel after the millstone is gone from your neck.
I take care of my mom, she is a wonderful mom. But even so things get harder as they get older, and it sucks the life and health from you.
I commend you for taking car of your MIL. I hope your husband realizes what a fantastic wife he has.
I also hope you go do something for "yourself" when she is gone. A nice vacation where you can be pampered for a change.
Keep us posted! Hugs !!!!!!
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Thank you all.
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I'm happy for you..Soon you will see the light , have peace of mind.. This caregiver job is not easy.. I think if I new what I was in for I would have never done it.. My Dad was so sweet til I nursed him back to feeling well , back to his self. Now he has become difficult to care for. He cannot afford to stay at ALF. Looks like I'm stuck ..Not a good feeling
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I read from the begining just never posted then just read up date hang in there... Breath It sounds like you will have peace soon.....Stick around alot of great people here... gread treads to vent on keep us updated....good luck...
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oldcodger2, you have not lost your mind ... at worst you have temporarily misplaced it! There is plenty for you to salvage. You'll never be quite the same, but some of the changes will be for the better.

I'm so sorry this transtition period is so painful for you, but I assure you you'll survive it and even blossom and thrive again.

Thanks for keeping us updated.
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I just noticed that my last post on this thread was July 2. On July 3rd - everything changed. Had a problem (the final straw) with my MIL's negative attitude and a problem with her bath lady (who was dismissed after I spoke with her manager) and the decision was made to place my MIL in an ALF. We visited her doctor - my husband came too - and the doctor kindly led the conversation to where it needed to go. We then visited and toured the facility - which is lovely and where a friends of ours lived for several years and where another friend has worked for 25 years. My MIL was pleasant.

But after we left she wouldn't speak to us for 3 days and hasn't been very congenial since then. Had another horrid day yesterday when she spent an hour telling some friends of ours (I was not in the room - but listened) many, many unkind and 'inaccurate' things. I cried 3 times yesterday and once already today.

My MIL hasn't a clue as to why she must move. It isn't as though we haven't discussed it. But everything here is MY fault. I told her that since she is so miserable and unhappy here - this was her chance to 'get rid of ME.' I don't think she saw the humor in that.

I am just trying to get through the days until her interview and we can find out when she will move. This has proven to be much more traumatic that I ever dreamed and would love to hear from anyone who has been through something similar (I have crashed and burned). I hope there is something of myself to salvage after this is over. Right now, I want to run away - but I can't. I can't sleep, concentrate very well, I feel like I might have lost my mind. Will I find it again?
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Sorry everyone - I posted and then 'disappeared.' I think I just felt like all I did was complain. I appreciate everyone who posted answers - I know you all care. I read through all the posts. Thank you.

I am a spiritual person and if it were not for prayer - I would not still be a caregiver - I know that. I pray for more patience every single night. I pray for all caregivers and I pray for all the elderly who are facing such loss - they have lost their health, independence, mates, some have lost children. I try so very hard to be a caring person.

We have added our next door neighbor to our 'Lifeline' list since he is almost always home on Sunday morning - and we are now able to leave her and attend services on Sunday and have lunch out. When she is up to it - she comes with us - but this year she hasn't done that very often. We never refuse to take her if she wants to go. So, if her health issues are fairly stable - as they are right now - we can get away for a couple hours now and then and we are grateful. So, I try to appreciate the time 'between crises.'

I hope you all didn't get the impression that my hubby doesn't care - he does. He tries to help as much as he can - mostly with 'intervening' - standing up for me when his mother gets weird and nasty - which is a fairly recent phenomenon - since her stroke in December. This is a side of their mother that her other two sons have never, ever seen. My husband didn't even totally believe me until he actually witnessed one of her 'episodes.' He now is a believer :0) She was always pretty amiable - so I think the stroke must have left a 'mark' on her personality. She pretty well recovered - just a tiny bit of residual weakness on her right side.

Thankfully, we were able to get a ten day break in April and went to the beach. Of course, I spent 3 weeks PRIOR to the vaca soliciting helpers - Scheduling everything you could possibly think of. I have to laugh - because you would think I was asking for the moon when I would ask someone if I could PUT THEM ON MY LIST to 'give her a call' or 'stop by and say hi' or 'bring a meal.' But, I have to give them credit, they came through and I pretty much FORGOT I HAD A MIL for about 8 days. Dread crept back in a couple days before we came back home :0(

It also just happened that she was between crises - seems she has something go wrong about every 3 months. Shortly after we got back, she got into a friends car - we were going for a drive - and twisted her lower back - so we have been dealing with that since May.

Her other sons aren't much help. The youngest especially is just a JERK. He manages to travel the world, visit his wifes parents near the beach several weeks a year - but only calls his mom a few times a year and visits for a couple hours. Spends 6 hours driving here - 2 -4 hours with mom and then leaves. She has been with us 7 years in May and he has never invited her to his home to give us a break.

One repeating theme I hear from your replies is that I need to ASK for help. What do you do when you ask, ask, ask and no one cares? Her other two sons just don't help. The youngest won't even answer my texts, emails or our phone calls! I told my hubby we should mail him her obit AFTER the funeral. We won't, of course, but a person does wonder why only one son and DIL must do it all and why they wouldn't feel any obligation to offer us a break. Seven years is a long time. I know some of you have done this longer - but it does feel like forever.

All for today :0) Thanks again. Hoping you are all well and not suffering too badly with this intense heat.
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I believe all caretakers understand your emotions. I work and take care of my mother. I have a sister that lives about 5 minutes away and is never around. She is always busy with her own life. If I do want to make plans I make them months in advance and even then am not sure things will change. I to wake up as tired as I go to sleep. Dress her, feed her and get her out the door for senior day care and then I leave for work. She overwhelmes me when I arrive home. My husband has to keep reminding me to be patient.. One of the problmes is I work in a Call Center and all day long I am being abused by people who beleive they have the right to call and say whatever they want however they want to the person on the other end of the phone. I also deal with the elderly and repeat myself all day.. I know it is not my mothers fault. She would not want to be this way and it is my responsibilty to rember that. I do forget and feel resentful that I have no life. All of you out there do me one favor, if you do have to call a call center for a problem, remember that the person on the other end have regulations and job specifications they must follow, but will do anything and everything they can to solve your problem if you are nice. Your issue is not there fault and they may have to go home to care for an elderly parent.
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Oldcodger: Here's what happens to me. I can feel overwhelmed when my dad is asleep in his chair. I think the reason is because I feel so displaced. I don't feel like I have a home anymore. There is no sanctuary for me, no place that is mine.

I have a million things I need to do and I want to do. I have weeds to pull, dog poop to pick up, nothing grand, just the day to day things that normal people do without giving it a thought. Have lunch with a friend, walk with a neighbor, take the dogs out on the back property for a good romp and breath in the fresh air that I use to so enjoy. So many little things that brought me joy. My garden, etc. I can't do any of these things now without having someone here. I can't take a shower without backup.

My husband is retired, but he still works part time and his hours vary. We do have a caregiver that comes in a couple of hours on MWF and that's a big help, but it's not a life.

I don't feel like I have a home anymore. It's just a place where I take care of my dad and people come in and out. Our previous caregiver, who we really liked, just left the agency and now I have one care giver coming on MF an another on W. So I have to go over everything with them and be close for questions until I feel comfortable that they understand what my dad needs. Starting all over with that feels exhausting to me.

I'm sorry that you feel your husband doesn't understand. My husband does understand and he can feel very sad that so much of our time has been taken up with my parents care. He feels for me and I feel for him. My husband, God Bless him, will take the night shift. He gets up and checks on my dad. Even though we have a bed alarm, my dad can't quite get out of it the way he use to. Instead, he gets part way out, legs and feet, and then is stuck in that position. As a result, the bed alarm doesn't go off. So we check on him during the night several times to be sure that he is warm or take him to the bathroom as needed. Thank God he doesn't (knock on wood) have BM's at night. That is a plus.

My dad is 89 and a very sweet man. He suffered a major stroke last July and now can do nothing for himself.....He can still feed himself and I am grateful for that. I spend many hours just waiting for him to have a bowel movement. That is kind of a high point, because I really want to get him to the toilet in time so I don't have to give him a shower too. So today, he had breakfast at 8:am, and at 2:30 pm he had his BM. Now during that 6 hour time, I could have gone outside or colored my hair, or whatever, but I didn't know he was going to sleep all that time. I never know what he is going to do and when. It changes from day to day and he is a major fall risk. So I am on watch. It's only when he goes to bed at night that I feel I have time off. I don't have to carry the video monitor with me and check it every few minutes while I'm in another room.

If you can, put some distance between you and your mil. I don't know if she can be on her own for a bit, but if so, get out as much as you can. I know from your previous posts she has diabetes, but not sure from memory what else is wrong with her.

Either you are going to have to learn a way of detaching from her, or there needs to be some serious discussion about putting her in an assisted living environment. Of course that takes money and I don't know if it's feasible for your family.

Not sure how old you are. I'm 63 and started this journey with my parents at 56. I'm a very kind and capable person, but I'm not sure I would do this again if I had it to do over. I'm ashamed to say that, but sometimes that's how I feel. It's not my parents fault, it's just a very hard job.

Maybe you and your husband could get some counseling. He needs to get his head wrapped around this and have a better appreciation for what you do for his mom. Maybe that's the most helpful thing I've said so far. I hope you will push for that. Love and Hugs, Cattails
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Well in some ways I can pretty much agree with what your other answers have been. You are the only one who can judge how you feel. Living in these situations 24/7 is a daunting task that only those of us who are also living it can possibly understand. I really got scared when my Father got ill and was hospitalized for 9 days in February, and it was extremely difficult getting my mother into the hospital to feed him 3 times a day. He was shaking so badly he could not feed himself. I kept it together during the time he was in the hospital, and during the first month of is recovery time at home. Then I hit a brick wall. I'm disabled myself with Fibromyalgia and COPD. The Fibro kicked in and I absolutely had to sleep. It happened that my down time happened during one of my 2 brothers "weekly" visits, I had been in bed most of the day, I said hi/bye and climbed back into bed and slept till noon the next day. By that time I knew that my Dad was well enough, and that my Mom would get me if I was needed, so I didn't feel bad about getting the rest I needed. It just seems that we, as caregivers never have enough time for ourselves and our needs. Respite care will be a God send later on, but for the moment, since my son is living here as well, I could take a little time for myself, and I'm planning to. I think I've told you before that I see a Psychologist to keep myself centered, and to ensure I'm doing the right thing by my parents, and myself. I put my parents through a pretty tough time when I was younger. I married a man who was abusive and stayed with him till he died in 2005. It was a rough 33 years, and it took it's toll on my relationship with my parents. I made a promise to myself when I was in my 20's that when the time came, no matter what I'd be with them and take care of them - my credo is no nursing home - ever. Now realizing how bad things can get, I may not be able to completely keep that promise, but between my son and myself, I think we can come pretty close. I have three siblings, my sister lives too far away to be anything more than a sounding board (which is a good thing), I have two brothers that live within 40 minutes, and they both visit once a week for a couple of hours, wow, big help, NOT. I had to practically have a hissy fit just to get them to give in this much, but I am sure that they will make time as things progress. You can only handle so much, and you know what that limit is. Maybe getting away for a few days may help you re-center yourself, gain perspective, and make decisions on what you think needs to happen next. All of us writing on this web site have experienced the un-caring, un-thinking people that live all around us all the time and have no idea of what we put up with each and every day. Maybe those are the people who just shove their parents into a nursing home and visit now and then. I tend to think that we, here talking to each other, asking for and getting help and support from each other area a more caring set of people "old school" types who believe that family takes care of family through thin and thick. Keep your chin up, I'm thinkin about ya. Be Well, God Bless
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You are normal being a caregivers has consumed me and sucked the life out of a once happy outgoing person. If you are like me you encourage your family to carry on but inside it kills me to know that I am missing out on my babies day to day lives. My son is a starting pitcher on his h's baseball team. I used to live for it and I have missed 11 games. You are normal and you deserve a break. My grandmother goes back to the nursing home tomorrow. I had been on the fence about it but she tortures my daughter and myself in addition to giving up our lives for her. The final straw- she told me I will treat you and that child (my 9 yr old) of yours anyway I want to. Deal with it! So I let 10 sec pass and called the nursing home. God smiled down on me and they had a room available. I can breath again and it is amazing. Please take a vacation and fill your lungs with worryfree air. It is amazing!Everyone is in a different situation yes but we all have given up a great deal for others please take care of you
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I know exactly how you feel. A line from a movie, "I've become the worst version of myself, and I don't like it." That was how I felt for the last year .... tired, depressed, angry because of my situation (almost 2 yrs of caregiving now ... and like you ... not near as demanding as some on this website). I looked in the mirror and hated the person I'd become. Then a few weeks ago, I decided to start going to Mass every morning. I get up at 5:30 am and sneak off to the Catholic Church for 6:30am Mass. I am home by 7:10am before Mom wakes up. I can't believe the difference it has made in my attitude and acceptance of my life as a caregiver. Not sure if this is a possibility for you, but I can only say, it totally changed my attitude.
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Caregiving is NOT EASY. People do not recognize what you give up in your own live to do for someone else-hence the caring about your MIL but not even a thought to how you are feeling. You have to take care of yourself. You need to set up a "ME" day. Get a cargiver for one day a week that is just for you. Do something you really like even if it is only stay in bed til noon and read a book, go out to lunch with a friend. The other reality in this is you are caring for an in-law. While you love her and want to care for her the dynamics are just different than caring for your own mother. For some it is easier and for many it is harder and easier to resent the husband sho strolls of to work and his life as you give up yours to take care of his Mom. These are all legitimate feelings. Try asking your husband to take over on at least one weekend day the total care of his mother. It will open his eyes maybe to the amount of work invovled and also the feeling of being trapped you experience the other 6 days of the week. Growing oldl is not for sissies but then neither is caregiving. This is just a hard period in anyone's life. We do it our of love. You need to take care of yourself so it does not turn into resentment.
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OC: It doesn't matter what others go through. We can all look around and find someone that has it worse. The world is full of starving people, people dying in insane wars. You can't look to the outside world to see if you match up.

Peeweedeb said that it looks like the novelty of care giving has worn off. You've been taking care of your mil for 6 years. That's not a novelty. I know PW is a kind hearted person, but maybe she is a born caretaker and the rest of us are just doing our best. You don't need to compare yourself with her or anyone else, myself included.

You have every right to want your life back. I bet you can't even remember who you were or how you will adjust to a new life if your mil is not in the mix.

Maybe it's time to think about doing things differently. God Bless You. Love and Hugs, Cattails.
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I have only been a caregiver for a month with my Dad living with me.But I have been his caregiver for more than 6 yrs and WHEW !! ..This is very challenging. I still work , so im tired all the time . I cry ,I think everyday ,than suck it up and move forward. My Dad is the best patient I could ever have , he is so coooperative , humbled and sweet. ..But.. I dont know who I am anymore.. Soon as I feel like I have the schedule down pack ..OOps something else comes up .But I'm like you , my situation is not as bad as some ..But I feel overwhelmed most days. It's like parenting all over again at 53 yrs old ..It's nerve wrecking..You are not alone. Wish you the best..And all we can do is our best
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I agree with so much of what's been said here! OldCodger2, I can definitely sympathize with your feelings. I, too, know that I don't have it nearly as difficult as many others do yet I also feel overwhelmed, angry, stressed, etc. just because of the changes that I've had to make in my life. I know that sounds selfish but it's just how I feel. My mom is a very good person and has been a wonderful mother but the dynamics of our relationship have changed dramatically since she moved in one year ago. I've always been close to her but I don't feel that way anymore. Even though it's not her fault that she needs help, I feel resentful yet, at the same time, I feel guilty for feeling resentful! I sometimes find myself thinking how devastated I will feel when she's gone yet, at other times, I feel dread that I may be taking care of her for many years to come. Since there's no one I would dare say this to, this is the first time I've admitted that to anyone and I know how terrible that must sound to all of you. I can't even believe that it's coming out of my mouth. I have no doubt that God will send me straight to hell for some of my thoughts.

I just feel like everything would be so much easier if I, too, could 'give it up' or 'just let it go' of the resentment but I just can't seem to do it because her care is now part of every aspect of my life. I feel like I'm suffocating. My siblings live out of state so I'm doing this alone too. I don't seem to enjoy the little things that I used to enjoy and I've totally lost my sense of humor. (I'm also lucky enough to be going through peri-menopause right now! Oh boy!) I miss our privacy and, like TNLADY, I just want some time alone with in husband in our own home. Unfortunately, I can't figure out a way to make that happen so we just trudge-on each day.

So, OldCodger2, I totally understand how you feel and wish I could give you a hug. I don't have a solution but wish I did. I just want you to know that you're not alone and your feelings are very valid. Hang in there.
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It is not a contest. We don't accumulate points for how hard we have it and then use them to justify how overwhelmed we feel. Your feelings are your feelings. Respect them. Perhaps how you are feeling is an indicator that something needs to change.

Some caregivers have things a lot harder than you do (on certain levels) and some have things easier than you do. Some people are not caregivers at all. Some people who should be helping with caregiving don't. None of this has any bearing on what you "should" feel.
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I don't have help. I am this prisoner I've read about. I empathize with this caregiver. My son says, "Mom, only you know what it is doing to your health. Please stop sacrificing yourself for Dad. We will have lost both of you. My family is supportive. they are not able to help me, other than to really let me know it is up to me to call the shots, and they will agree with the choice I make.
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I agree with you!!! I am tired of people telling me to let it go, etc. I have looked at their lives and realized that most of them are leading a life of very little responsibility, that's why it is so easy for them to say let it go!!!
Everyone on here is right, if you feel tired and all, then you are tired and all!!. Ask for help, it is hard to do, but key to your own mental and physical well being. And leave as often as you can.
I too dread coming back and I realize it is because I am done being the all and everything. I have been doing this mostly alone for 5 1/2 years now. I have no spouse or nearby siblings. I have finally asked repeatedly for help. For the most part, my siblings have stepped up to the request. But because they live far away, I will still be the one to be there for his final months, weeks, days, and hours. I dread it.
Stay strong by getting help, good meds, exercise, and friends who will listen.
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Accept the fact YOU ARE TIRED!!!! I kept hearing the same things...".let it go, can't change it", well I agree that doesn't work for me either. I am a natural caregiver, have always been, so as my stepmom has progressed in a few areas she for the most part has not improved in the almost 2 yrs I've been here. she is only 71 and I'm 63!!! Not much of a difference. She did have a stroke 5-7 yrs ago, however she was treated very quickly and had almost no residual effects! She .has done very little for the last 4-5 yrs, other than sit in a recliner and watch tv. She is a binge drinker and recently fell braking her wrist, 41 staples in her scalp...long story short after much harassing on my part the dr finally a bevy of nurses to check her and do some evaluations. She is going to do some in-home pt, but refused, for now, the ot. they are also doing an eval on the dementia. At least I know I am doing all that I can, now, and can rest a bit. then this weekend I took a long needed short vacation...my son and his family gifted a trip to St Augustine with them this last weekend. Very short very good and really pointed out how much I really needed to get away....try it you need it and you deserve it!!!
You maybe dreading coming home to the problem but maybe you are feeling that the vacation is unearned??? That is so wrong, don't let others take your joy or deprive you of an earned vacation!! Good luck! Keep us updated, share 'cuse it really does help! It helps you and does help others!
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I know you are lonely. It's weird how we can be surrounded with people and still be lonely, lonely for someone to share our burdens with , our own personal joys. Bou are so blessed to have people visit with her. We don't have that luxury so we seldom get a break. When people come they are doing it for you as well as her. This is your chance to go in your room and read a book, take a nap... go shopping. recharge. If we dont take the time to recharge we will get sick ourselves. Caregiving, even if they can do things for themselves, is stressful and it eats up your personal time. Personal time is vital!!! It is very important to steal away and spend time alone, and with God. The Lord is your strength and shield. He is your devine helper and deliverer. It is from Him that your spirit gets renewed. We can only use your own will power and giving nature so long, then you run out of steam, energy and we start resenting our task. Go to Jesus and let Him fill you with His virtue, love and peace. And know that we all care for you and understand completely how you feel.Ps. 61:2 when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
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Please take care of yourself as best as you can and yes your feelings are yours, nobody else has to undersand them or agree with them. Sounds like you have a big heart and just wants some appreciation or help. I've learned that people are just people and you can't have expectations of them unless they agree to them. Restructuring our lives is always good. Expressing what we need is always good. In all of it, get the outside resources you need and take care of your own mental health as well.
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I know what you are feeling as well... my mother moved in with me 1 1/2 years ago after my father passed away. I knew she would not do well living alone. Dependency has slowly increased and I find myself more and more depressed about it..... not so much about what I am doing now but what the future holds for my mother and me... I love my mother dearly but I can't help but feel anger inside because I feel that she would just let me do everything if I would.... I don't like feeling the resentment that I do but it's the situation and it's what I must endure.
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Sweety..I know exactly where your coming from. Ive been caring for my mother in law for 12 years. And yes it is extremely overwhelming. And yes, people dont understand. My mother was the only one who realized the stress I was under and once or twice a week she would come and get me just for lunch or just hang out at f ya ever need to vent feel free to e-mail; me. Venting helps!!!!!
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Wow!!! Great question!! I finally took some good advice, 4years late, it had been suggested to just make a routine schedule with your husband. If he gripes about it...well then he gripes. If he chooses to not make a shake hands agreement about taking on some of the load, then, when he is home and you need a break, get yourself ready to go , let him know you are leaving for two or three hours and that he is in charge, then leave! If you fear repercussions from the needed freedom then prepare a schedule and hand it to him, tell him you need a break 3 times a week let him tell you when he will sacrifice the needed time for you since you are sacrificing your life for his mother! It took a lot for me to do this, but when you find yourself day dreaming about the next on comming tree or a new state to escape to under the USA wittiness protection program... You have got to tell your husband how you are feeling and what your NEEDS are!
Something I learned, the hard way, is that if you are not voicing your needs to everyone and anyone that could be helping... They will not help you... If they know that you are doing the job and are not complaining or even if you are complaining and the definitely realize that you are not going to put your MIL in danger by just leaving her alone or or not caring for her... Well they will continue on there merry way. Even go out of their way not to be in contact during certain times of the week. You have to assert yourself and let everyone know where you stand, or you will end up continuing to stand alone!!! I have been there and know exactly how you are feeling.
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