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Every time I do it takes him days to get his emotional equilibrium back, and I realize it is my fault. But I am his sole caretaker, definitely never meant to be a nurse, and I get soooo tired having to do everything, including keeping the mood upbeat. I am only human, on heavy duty antidepression medication, and so disappointed with how my "retirement" has ended up. I have already endured six years, and know I have many more years to go -- probably until the end of my functioning years. I do get out once or twice a week, but he takes the joy out of it for me by knowing what buttons to push. How does anyone survive caretaking?

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I’m going to bump this up to hopefully get you some more advice.
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So sorry you are in this position with no end in your sight. You say you are not cut out to be a caregiver nor a nurse, but yet here you are, losing your temper, trying to put on a smiling face, already on antidepressants. How long do you think you can live like this? Without lashing out? Without getting ill yourself? “To the end of your functioning years?” OMG, that is so sad. I encourage you to step back andpicture how you want your life to look, and work toward that goal.

There is no shame in saying “I can’t do this anymore, it’s not safe for him or me.”

When Mom needed 24 hour care, I knew enough about myself to know I was not cut out for it. I’ve never had kids, never even babysat. Don’t like all the bodily fluids that happen and I was afraid I wouldn’t have the patience needed. I didn’t want it to damage the good relationship I had with her, and turn me resentful. And I knew it could go on for years. And years. I knew I couldn’t do it. I now visit her at the NH daily. We enjoy each other’s company and she sends me home to be with my husband at the end of our visit. I bless the staff who do all the things I can’t. No guilt.

Perhaps that would be a better scenario to envision?
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We caregivers are not Superwomen even though Society expects it of us. If we complain, we get the marriage vows thrown up in our face. Our lives, your’s and mine, certainly have not turned out to be like one of those ads for Seniors we see on television. The Seniors shown are vibrant, active, mobile and with-it. The perfect life, the perfect house, the perfect children and grandchildren who are there for them and love to come to Grandpa and Grandma’s house and laugh and play and eat big gourmet dinners happily prepared by ever-smiling Grandma. I know, it makes me very sad too.

I tend to smart off to my husband and say some nasty things to him, but I’ve never really lost it with him to the point where it takes him days to recover from the outburst, though. If this happens often, maybe it’s time for you to speak with your doctor or a therapist, or HIS doctor. Sometimes having a few afternoons off a week takes the pressure off, and you may find his insurance will provide a health aide a few times a week.
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