Has your health suffered due to caregiving?

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My husband has been partial care giving for his dad (he is in his mid-80's). Diabetic, eats candy, ice cream, pies, etc. Wants the miracle pill that will make him 16 again, hateful, deaf (refuses to get a hearing aid that would help the deafness), picky eater (wants pigs feet, biscuits with lots of gravy, no left overs -- this includes freshly just made sandwiches that have been made with "left over" ingredients such as ham, cheese, etc.)
His health has been declining and my husband has been making 3-4 trips to his house a day, fixing meals (some get one or two bites with a "I can't eat this sh** or thrown across the room). My hubby has been getting up earlier before work, driving to his house and keeping a horrible schedule.
In these last few months, he has had an increase in his sugar levels from diabetes, gained weight, tired from lack of sleep and his blood pressure was through the roof (e.g. 222/124).
Two weeks ago, my father in law went to the hospital. His blood sugar levels are better than my husbands (before going in) and they have taken him off a lot of the unnecessary meds he was on. He is scheduled to go to a nursing home for rehab.
In that time, my husband has been happier, blood pressure slowly impoving, he is losing weight and getting more sleep. My blood pressure has been going down too.
He has said that he is not going several times a day to the nursing home, in fact he is not even going to go every day. He said any man in his 80's that the doctors have stabalized and in many ways is doing better than we are does not need him constantly.
Has anyone else had their health suffer due to care giving? Did it improve when your family member passed or went to a nursing home? We have learned it is just not worth it.

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Awesome forum!! This site offers support for people who feel as though they are loosing their mind and/or who may be feeling guilty about finding alternatives to help care for a love one.
I am a 56 year old woman who has been pretty strong and healthy. Since caring for my husband totally, the last two years, my body has taken a big hit. And now, my body is mimicking signs of a heart attack. I went to the emergency room twice in 3 days. Now, I'm afraid to breath. However, I love my husband and he still needs care. I'm in the process of securing resources to help me, so that I can help him. Having said that, some major changes have to occur. In the meantime, he has to go without me jumping to cater to his every want. We have discussed the necessity of a change and he is on board. So, I want to encourage you all to SEEK outside help. There are agencies that provide relief to caregivers FREE for a limited time. Contact the hospital social worker, the American Heart/Stroke association, whatever the issue is. There is HELP, FIND it. There are statistics out there that show people caring for loved ones develop their own health issues that often end in death. I often feel guilty about having anyone else help, because I feel my husband is my responsibility. But after my visits to the emergency room I have decided I want to live. I don't know what God has in store for either of us, but I am seeking his guidance to make sure my husband's dignity stays in tack along with my sanity and health. STAY CONNECTED, we need each other.
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It takes a toll on your health, both mental and physical, that's for sure.
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As a nurse, with a diet like your father-in-law had, he would not last long. However, now that he is in a nursing facility, staff will not take crap like he displayed with his son. Family members are always the brunt of abuse, so continue getting healthy both of you, only go to the nursing home when you feel up to it, and wish him the best. Take time for yourselves and he will do just fine in the nursing facility. Get your husband's B/P down or he will not outlive his father!
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When I was caring for my father he got his days and nights mixed up. Consequently I was getting little sleep. If I did sleep he would try to get himself up, fall, and then I would have to call someone in the middle of the night to help put him back to bed. It reached a point where I knew one of us was going to end up in a nursing home and it wasn't going to be me! Once there, they straightened out his sleep patterns, no more falling, COPD improved. As for me - I recovered quickly. My advice would be to let your father-in-law stay at the nursing home if possible or find him an assisted living facility quickly - before you become a widow caring for an ungrateful father-in-law.
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My health was suffering after taking my mom in for 6 months. Heart palpitations high B.P,poor sleep, worry, weight loss etc. plus a young daughter with a newly diagnosis of ovarian cancer. I remembered what I was once told: take care of yourself first before you can take care of others. So I am in the process of placing mom in an assisted care home. Guilt? yes- but further thinking,proves it best for the entire family.My 97 year old mom is not the same person she used to be. I think this is the hardest thing for most people to accept is that their parents may be memories of who they once were.Set your priorities, take care of yourself first.
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Yes, I suffered physically caring for my parent in my home, developed problems in both feet, gained weight from lack of sleep and cortisol levels. However, having been subjected to the ultimate crazies I am now assured of my emotional strength and how amazing my abilities are to endure and survive.
It's nice to care for them if there is a decent relationship, but as soon as they become impossible, NO WAY should you put up with it. That's why there are care homes and other facilities run by professionals. I recommend taking a proactive partnership stance, but that can be done over the phone.
Best wishes to you and your husband. Make sure he takes care of himself:)
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Yes it does. You need to remember to take care of yourself too! I was so concerned with my parents that I forgot about myself and I am now suffering from 2 Chronic conditions due to taking care of my parents.
Again, remember that you can't help your parents if you are not in good health. You start feeling strange; GET CHECKED OUT!! Don't put it off. If you are not there for your parents; then who will?
God Bless you for what you are doing. Remember, you are not alone.
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Not to myself. It contributed to my sisters death, though.

My Mother was like your FIL. She was forced to the hospital and transported to rehab, then nursing home and now Assisted Living. She is doing great (or at least better.) At home, she was hateful, not eating, not very mobile, not clean. Now she is clean, eating, dressed and was actually in the commons area on Monday listening to a group sing.

My feeling is that it would benefit your FIL, if your husband did avoid going to visit, so much.
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Do not take it negativily, just remember what you give you will receive. He gave you what he could while you were young and needed, I know it is difficult sometimes since I am caregive to my mom for four years now, and belive me it is hard and I´ve feelings like yours, but its not fair to them. Try to do some gardening or something while you are at home with him and when you have to go to the drugstore or running errands for him, just think "I could be in his place". that´s all. Do not despair. Rise your hopes and everything will be allright.
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I have gained around 30 lbs., mostly belly fat. Before I moved in with mom, I did not have to take blood pressure medicine and was 30 lbs. leaner. I have stress headaches all the time. My patience is very thin, angry all the time. If I am having what may be a normal day, a little less stressed, I get afraid and know that feeling won't last long because mom will say or do something to ruin it. I'm depressed all the time, etc. I could go on but what's the use.
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