How old were you when you started becoming a carer?


After reading so many posts on here, it got me thinking about when my lone caring for my mother began. I actually see a decline in my mother since my father passed away in 2006, just shows how in just 8 small years, things can change really quickly. So I guess I was 34 when my caring role was thrust at me...

I had hoped that her other 3 older wayward children (my half siblings) would have shared the caring but if you have seen any of my other posts, they have a mix of problems and a general hate for my mother and want nothing to do with her. I never thought I would be left with all this...

I'm off work today after 2 day's of 12 hr shifts on location and also work from home too, so I'm always working in one way or another being self employed. Coming home to many messeges left on the house phone.. which I will need to deal with today. With all the stress and work, just leaves me like a zombie. I came home late last night, had something to eat and then just flopped into bed..

I have so much work I need to do today, job related and then I know mother will want me to do the 1hr trek up to see her this weekend, which with be fuelled with all kinds of stress YAY!!

Rant over

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


I tend to agree with caregiver14 that you are pretty much born this way....It feels like I have been a caregiver in some form or fashion all of my life. My parents married later in life for that era (the Depression) and so had children in their my parents were older than most of my friends parents. I had the best childhood in the world, was very happy and had parents who loved us dearly and, in my opinion, raised us well.. :) But it is odd how life can begin to take on all kinds of oddities as you grow up and move out. My brother is older by only two years, but he married first, to a woman who I have always believed was truly demon possessed. She put my entire family through hell the entire time they were married, and especially during the time when my Daddy really took a downhill turn healthwise and subsequently passed away in 1995. Having to go through so much of her abuse and watching my parents do it as well really did a number on me. It made me extremely protective of them. I seem to become their protector, even though they didn't ask that of me, I know they enjoyed that I was there most of the time "running interference" I lived two and a half hours from home so it was not easy by any means. My parents dished out money to my brother and her like it was water running from a faucet...they both thought they had to have it all, whether they could afford it or not and sadly, my Mama kind of enabled them by insisting they help them financially. I was the one who always did all the work...they were the ones who got the financial never changed. I have spent my life rescuing animals, employers (like caregiver I was the one working the weird late hours, making the bosses look good and never getting the promotions or financial appreciation although I got a whole lot of praise...I guess that's all caregivers need, or so these odd sorts think.

I always seemed to be the one who folks thought could "fix" things...relationships, financial issues, legal matters, whatever, I was the "go to girl" for all of it...and now as my Mama approaches her 90th birthday, I gave up my home, my job, my friends, my life, to move back home and have been doing this for over two and a half years...although it feels like once Daddy passed over 18 years ago I should have moved back as it would have been easier on me I think sometimes...

The strange part is, I am not stupid, I know I am being used, always knew it, but on the rare occasion when I would attempt to have a sit down and let's talk this out type of meeting with a boss, friend, whoever, I got blasted for being "impossible" "selfish" "hateful" I just avoid the aggravation.

Sorry, rambled a little there, but I do think you are kind of born into it, and then you kind of have it all "glom onto you" and you find yourself alone, 55, worn out beyond your years but oddly enough, at leat for me...content. I love Mama and so will continue to do whatever I can as long as I can and I just ask God for strength. But I do feel like as soon as my feet hit the floor in this world I began my future role of caregiver and I know it will never change.
Helpful Answer (0)

I just kind of realized it today while I was answering another question on here, but I've been a caregiver for several people over the years, and just never really thought about it until now.

When I was in my mid-20's, my then-husband's elderly parents moved in with us. They were in their 50's when they had him, so they were in their 70's when they moved in with us, and his father had terminal cancer with only months to live. He passed away in our home. His mother stayed on with us until my husband left me for a younger woman (midlife crisis!) - she wanted to stay with me, which was a sad testimony of how dysfunctional his family was - she would rather live with her daughter-in-law than one of her own kids. I wished I could have helped her, but she would have been alone almost 12 hours a day - too much risk of injury or illness happening during those hours and no one being there with her.

When I moved back home to Michigan, I helped care for my mother's mother (my grandmother) in the nursing home, and helped sit shifts at her bedside during her final hours. When the end came, it was during my shift at her bedside...I told her to please hold on until my Mom could get there...she did, taking her last breath only after my Mom arrived and told her it was ok to let go. I was in my mid-30's at this time.

Last year, my dad passed away, with all of us kids, Mom, and some of the grandkids at his bedside in intensive care. I moved in with Mom as her caregiver during his 6-month illness prior to his here I am again as caregiver at age 43.

I realized today that I must have "caregiver" tattooed on my forehead in ink that only others can see. LOL
Helpful Answer (1)

Ali... P.S. My father passed away when I was 18 and my brother was only 7... I still feel his presence... but, am glad he doesn't have to suffer any more... God Bless you!
Helpful Answer (0)

Oh Ali! How unfair this is for you... I do think in the long run that you'll be the stronger for how you (tried) to help your mom... (I can't believe she's still smoking!!!... but, my stepfather did the same... addiction). I really believe you'll get back on your feet again and go back to school. School will be good for your mind and for your future! I'm glad you have a boyfriend... a 'friend' to support you... Try and push yourself to get out with him when time allows... It'll be healthy for you to get back to some kind of (your) 'normal'... and, it'll help more before your mom is gone... You're a beautiful young lady... Try really hard to take care of yourself... I'm so glad you are on this site!... Write often... (((hugs))) Lynn
Helpful Answer (1)

I'm 19 and I care for my mother who's stage 4 breast cancer with leptomeningeal carcinomatosis. I dropped out of my freshmen year of college to move home and take of her. There's no one really to help me with my mom. (my grandmother is 85 and cares for my aunt who's a quadriplegic, and my parents are divorced.)

I never realized how much I was giving up when I moved back home. I rarely get to see any friends (maybe once a month), and my boyfriend has to come to my house every weekend because I can't leave her, which I'm sure he's getting sick of.

It's taking a huge emotional toll on me. I guess part of me resents her for making me give up my life. I know she won't be around much longer but I can't help how I feel.

She can't do much on her own. I have to changer her diapers, get her out of bed, clean house, take her to all of her doctor appointments, etc. I wouldn't mind doing all of this if I could actually get some sleep. At night, she wakes up about every two hours and gets me up. Last night she woke me up three times screaming because she couldn't find her lighter. I don't mind getting up for the bathroom, food, etc. But to smoke? Come on now. Then she constantly threatens to call the police on me, because I won't get up, which in her mind is abuse. (Well, I always end up doing what she says, but it always results in a screaming match.)

Taking care of her has completely ruined any kind of relationship we had. I'm tired, angry, and depressed all at the same time. I don't know what I can do. I feel like i'm stuck between a rock and hard place.
Helpful Answer (0)

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