I can't keep up with the demands of my job, trying to get my own health under control, and care for my 87-year-old mother with dementia & Alzheimer's. How do I deal with the burnout?

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I can't keep up with the demands of my job, trying to get my own health under control, and care for my 87 year old mother with dementia/Alzheimers. My relationship with my fiance' has also recently ended causing additional stress. I feel some days as though I'm not going to make it. I have said to my siblings that I've had enough. They don't want Mom going to a nursing home and yet they have excuses for why she can't live with them. Help!

Answers 1 to 10 of 25
Wow, I can really relate to your problem.. Im 30, been married for a little over a year and my wife and I care for my 90 year old Aunt. Keep your head up and seek assistance ( Something I plan to do. ) sit your family down and be honest with them... " I cant keep this up either you help and take her for a few weeks or she has to go to a home " If they think they have a way out of helping they will take it.... Pray ( A Lot ) that will also help !! I hope things get better for you!! Keep in touch!! I know some times just writing this stuff down makes a big difference.
I can really relate to your question.I am caring for an 89 year uncle who I live with and am struggling with my own health problems(Diabetes,Anemia,Hypertension)If you can find an attorney maybe you can be made your mom's legal guardian,as you have cared for her all this time.Your siblings are doing nothing/little to help and unless they want to care for her themselves,should have no say whether or not they go to a nursing home.
I can really relate to your question.I am caring for an 89 year uncle who I live with and am struggling with my own health problems(Diabetes,Anemia,Hypertension)If you can find an attorney maybe you can be made your mom's legal guardian,as you have cared for her all this time.Your siblings are doing nothing/little to help and unless they want to care for her themselves,should have no say whether or not she goes to a nursing home
Dear Friends,
I hear you! How to get help ,ask for it: I get very little but once I hired someone live in now, relations got a bit better. They realized I was neither shipping him out nor asking for a total here take your Dad...
At one point I went to visit a Doctor who said " I can't help you out until you know what you want" . So I spent some valuable time figuring out for the first time in a few years what I wanted and needed. And I began to formulate some very specific demands and how I would ask.
Once I no longer looked like a crazy person and asked for very specific help things went better. I also tried several new forms of communication. When trying to prepare for a needed surgery I explained how I might lose him trying to drop him off and park far away and I needed another person to hear what the Dr. said as this was not my native language. We got dropped off and she even spent a few mornings at the Dr. with us. This was far more than I had dared hope for.
My grandkids and sons were on Face Book so I started to communicate with them asking they inform their parents.I answered specific questions by phone and computer.
There was also a family visit so I could explain what was happening-Demencia is hard to catch on to. And gently explain how they could make him happy or comfortable.
But the best was the day I said "well,Sweetheart, I'm doing what I can but if I should just drop dead with the next high blood pressure thing, well, he's all yours"
You better believe there is a true preoccupation form my health now....
By the way, I have a helper- a housekeeper because I could no longer leave for work and leave him alone-but we need the money.
We are still not out of the woods but each day gets a little better and everyother month or so I ask the daughter to come and stay with him so I can go out and see a friend or once so that I could stay in bed a day that I was real sick.
We are now trying to form a monthly luncheon or snack with all invited or one family. I want to do this on a once a month basis but again the burden falls on me.
It was a real shock to hear one or two friends say they would like to come to the house and meet him.
I better not think that over too much and just say yes cause that kind of offer has been long in coming.Has maybe my attitude changed? Am I perhaps less scared and worn ? Whatever the reason I better just go for it and bring bits of the world ( and lovely people ) in if I can't get him out.
Hope some of my thoughts here are of help.
Top Answer
All I can say is good for you! I have cared for my disabled husband for 35 years now, and am only just learning how to get help. I used to think it was all on my shoulders and if I couldn't handle it it meant there was something wrong with me. Now I know it takes more than just one person to do this. I get away on respite weekends all to myself every 3 months. Sometimes all I do is sleep during that time. And I am learning to say yes to everyone that wants to help, whether that help is in a form I prefer or not. Everything from bringing a meal to making a short visit or mowing the lawn. Once you start saying yes and then lavishly thanking folks for their involvement, they feel like doing more. I'm not saying its easy, but it is getting a bit more manageable.
You have to share the time of caregiving. Time management will make or break any family that is involved with caregiving. If someone ends up being a primary caregiver and the other relatives fade off, the person doing most of it suffers. The individual needing the caregiving suffers. Family meetings once a month to schedule all the family giving their time would help. Then see if there are other non family members who can volunteer or be hired to take on hours not covered. It takes work, but won't happen if someone doesn't get things going. It's a change of lifestyle for everyone, not just one person.
I can relate as well. I'm 35, two kids (10,6) husband, f/t job, husband - and a mom with EOAD who cant be alone. I was losing my mind - and killing myself in the process. My brother is zero help. I had to place my mom in a nursing home last week. It was hard -but all of us are happier even her. Because now when I visit - we are laughing and talking - not in the mundane of the disease. Its been good for all of us.
I'm 59, have a 35yr.old son with profound disabilities and mental retardation, have a high school special ed teaching job (29th year) and my mother(87) had a stroke 3 yrs. ago and two heart attacks. She still lives in her own home. My sister is POA, and we both give mom any extra minute we have so she won't need to move. I have a 6yr. old granddaughter who I pick up after school usually daily. I take her and my son with me to mom's. My days are packed too. I know it won't be forever, and I want mom to remember how loved she is, not how hard my life is right now. I'd never have time for a social relationship, not even a night out with girlfriends. Somehow I just keep moving.
You are not alone. I myself care for both parents with Alzheimer's, and attend Ashford University online during my nighttime hours. I am finding it more and more difficult to concentrate and fear for my own mental health, I am 53 yrs of age.
I ache for you n have similar issues. Unfortunately don't have an answer for u. Hopefully u have a good friend u can talk to for support. I'm a caregiver in my job n then come home to mom who is n fairly good shape some of the time. I bet u have emotions u can't even put into words. The only thing I can recommend is prayer. I wish we could all help each other out n live close together n a community where we could do things for one another, give each other breaks, hugs n help support one another which is often lacking from other family members n society. Ill be praying for u n send u understanding, respect, and hugs! I get how hard it is especially if u don't feel well. Me too!!!

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