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One year ago I had to place my 90 year old Mum in a nursing home. I looked after her 24/7 for six years but I just could not manage more. I visit her twice a day during lunch time and then again late afternoon. During these times I feed her and make sure she is ok for night time. My problem is , it is not getting easier for me. I cry constantly and unable to do anything. I must mention that Mum and I have lived together for 56 years just her and I, we did everything together. I feel such guilt because I promised her I will look after her to her death and now she is in an old age home. How do you let go , how do you trust the staff to do what is best for her? If anyone out there can help with advice I will be greatful because my hurt is getting unbearable

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Nadia ((((((((hugs))))) You have nothing to feel guilty about. I have taken on POA for my mother, but if I cannot continue to do it, (I am 77 and she is 102), I will have to make changes and let someone else do it. You have done and are doing all you can, Both posters above have given you good feedback. You must look after yourself. Please let us know that you are taking steps to help yourself.
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Nadia, I am sorry that you are feeling so depressed, stressed out, guilty for no longer being able to do the 24/7 care that you did directly yourself for 6 years, and are finding it difficult to trust the staff at the nursing home to do the right thing for your mother, plus constantly crying and feeling unable to do anything.

It sounds like you are going through some deep anticipatory grief as you realize that it is getting closer to the day when your mother will die. I have been there. My mother was in a nursing home for 4 years, before she died at 82 back in October of 2013. It also sounds like you may have some separation anxiety which also is understandable give that you and your mother lived together for all 56 years of your life and did everything together. Ya'll are very close.

Since she is now 90, I would imagine that your mother has outlived almost all if not all of her friends and possibly a lot of relatives including siblings, if she had any. My dad is now 89 and has only 1 living sibling from a large family. He has outlived most of his friends and his sister died this past June from Alzheimer's and she was in her 80's.

On the other hand, you are in your 50's and I would think probably still have a fair number of friends although your contact with them may have become limited during those 6 years of taking care of your mother 24/7. That is a normal result of the kind of sacrifice that you made for your mother. You have shown her a lot of love.

Now that your mother's direct care has moved from your hands into the hands of the professional staff of the nursing home, this is an opportunity to re-connect with your friends that you have not been in contact with much for a while. They will probably be glad to hear from you.

I have one final suggestion for your well being and health which desperately needs your attention and action today. I can hear you crying out for help in your post. You sound all tied up on the inside like a ball of twine.

I suggest that you get out your telephone book, look up therapists or counselors in the yellow pages and call someone up for an appointment today and ask if you can them or someone in their group of therapists next week. Tell them you need to see someone about your depression, feeling stressed out, finding it hard to trust, and feel guilty although you have not done anything wrong. If it makes any difference to you, you can ask for a male or female therapist if you are calling a place where there is a group of therapists. I suggest picking someone who is a licence clinical social worker. They are the best in my opinion. They have a masters in clinical social work also known as a LMSW.

I don't know what state you live in, what time it is there or what time that you made your post, but I can tell that you are reaching out for help and it's Friday, the last day of the workweek. Do something nice for yourself this morning and call up a therapist or an office of several therapists and make an appointment with someone who can see you next week or very soon if not next week. You may have to call more than one place to find someone for next week or as soon as possible, but make the call today, this morning.

If at any point before you see the therapist, you find yourself in a deep emotional crisis in which your depression goes way, way down, do call 911 and request emergency help.

I am wishing you the best as you take better care of yourself while also looking after your mother's care. She will be fine in the nursing home while you make these phone calls and have an appointment to go see a therapist, but do this today. It's up to you weather you tell your mother that you have a doctor's appointment, but do make an appointment today.

The therapist will want to get to know you and your story as you have shared with us. Tell her all of that and anything more. In the process of getting to know you, your story and gain your trust, the therapist will be able to help you to deal with your depression, stress, guilt, etc.

He or she may want you to see a doctor for some medication to help you with depression and those meds normally take about 4 weeks to really start working. The doctor may even prescribe an anti-anxiety med for you.

The meds will help stabilize your emotions so that talking with the therapist is the most effective. Your depression, stress, difficulty letting go and trusting are situational. That is, they are caused by the situation that you are in and not by something that is wrong with you. Emotionally you are stuck, tied up on the inside and you need a therapist to help you get untied and unstuck.

Since your depression, stress, guilt, etc. are situational, you don't need to look at going to see a therapist and a doctor as meaning that you are weak (which obviously you are not weak) or that you have a permanent mental illness. It just means you need some short term help with some situational issues in your life right now that you can't overcome entirely by yourself. You are not alone. There is help out there. You are not the only or the first person who has ever felt the way you do. You can get help and live a better life than the depression, guilt, stress, and difficulty letting go in trust that the staff will do the right thing for your mother. Be nice to yourself. I think that your mother loves you enough, like any mother would, that she would want you to be nice to yourself and take care of your own health.

I wish you the best. Reach out this morning and get yourself an appointment with a therapist to take better care of you by starting on a healthier path than the one you are on right now.
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Nadia, in what way do you feel you're not caring for her? You're there more than you're not. You feed her and advocate for her needs. But you DO presumably get a good night's sleep.

Now, it sounds as though you are wearing yourself out with stress, guilt and depression. Stress and depression can kill. Will your mother be well served if you die?

Will you take your health seriously and get your depression treated for her sake, if not for your own?
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