I just can't do it anymore. I am so stressed from caring for my mom. Am I a terrible person?

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Help, I just can't do it anymore. Am I a terrible person? It has been almost a year since her broken hip, then the lung infection and no. Today my sister (thank God) took my Mom to the Dr. and she has to have a bunch of injections in her eye to keep her from going blind. I can't spell the disorder. Of course this is another thing she was suppose to see the Dr. about a few months ago but she put it off. I don't know if seeing him earlier would have helped or not.


I cant start this all over again with my Mom.


I have to go to the cardiologist Monday b/c I saw my primary care Dr. and I had an abnormal EKG. Stress? I don't know. Plus found out today my ex got arrested for DUI and a few other things. I will die if he dumps that on my son. My son's dog had surgery today and made it thru OK (sounds dumb but I love her). My Mom's treatment starts with injections and she can not lift her head up other than 15 minutes every hour for two days. I sound selfish don't I ? Just too much so I just needed to vent.

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You are not selfish! You've done so much and have so much else that's needed. Stress is a very likely cause of your own health problems, so that is a warning. Somehow, you have to get other help for your mom. If siblings can't help more, then in-home help or even assisted living should be investigated. Try going to your state website. Type "aging" in the search box and look for your local National Family Caregiver Support Program. These people should be able to give you some local information.

Also, if you have an Area Agency on Aging in your community, please contact them. You can go to www.n4a.org and type in your Zip code. These people are amazing. I wish every community were covered. Many are, however, so try them. You need to do something for yourself.
Carol
I can only empathize with you as I am in a very, very similar situation. When I saw your comment, I saw myself all over again and it truly hits home when you see it in writing! My mother is having bouts with bi-polar where she is very aggressive and shops like mad when she's up, only to fall into a deep depression when she realizes just how much money she has spent on things she never gets to use or enjoy - not to mention the fact that she has no place to put all of the stuff. Well, to try to help her after my dad passed away, my husband and I decided to move her in with us. We went out and purchased a new home, and by the way, the old one still hasn't sold, to move her in. Just two months after moving into our new home, my husband suffered a life changing motor vehicle accident and is now a quadriplegic. So, talk about stress. I am still holding down a full time job and trying to juggle between everybody elses issues. But, just like someone else posted, we have absolutely got to learn how to take care of ourselves. We think it's selfish when we get burnt out and become snappy and short tempered, but we are human and can't do it all because it is not only difficult, but we are not built to carry these burdens indefinitely without destressing. Even nurses have to get away from it as they most often work three 12- hour shifts and then they are off and away from the situation. You have got to build your support system so that you can have an outlet.

When my husband was in the hospital for 4 months, I found myself almost angry when everybody kept telling me to get away and take a break. I realize now they were only telling me that out of love.

So, even though I don't know you, I can tell you out of love and respect from one caregiver to another, that we can't be any good to our loved ones if we aren't good to ourselves. We've got to find some outlets for destressing.

I am so happy I found this site. Since my dad past away in '94, I have taken care of my now 89 year old mother that refuses to leave home. For years me and my husband took care of all her needs from bill paying, being sure she has the right insurance and drug card, house cleaning, yards done, grocery shopping, doctor visits to hair appointments.......'I can't do it any more'! I have 4 sibling, one helps alot since he moved back home, two others help out when 'ASKED' and my only sister lives across the country. She calls mom once a week, sends a check every three months to pay for house cleaning and that is the extend of her help. With today's technology she could take care of some on mom needs right from her home. Also my oldest brother had a stroke 6 years ago, and guess who he asked to take POA for his financial and health decisions.

I feel so guilty about taking my and brother their files while knowing they can't handle them...........but 'I can't do it anymore'. With all the stress over the years as well as my husband and myself's medical problems; I have been diagnosed with Poly-Myalgia Rheumatica, I have days I can't get out of bed. My doc says I have to get out from under so much stress.......and just how do I do that. The only answer I can come up with is to tell my mother and brother that 'I can't do it anymore'. In fact my husband is pushing me make them find someone else to help them out. Every day I give to my mother and brother takes from my home and my disabled husband...........he is to the point 'he can't take it anymore'. He sees the stress I under daily and demands I make them find someone else to help them out.

It feels so good to be able to vent to others that understand where I am and reading other's post helps me have the grit to do one of the hardest thing I have had to do in my life time.........I feel like I am turning my back on them, but 'I can't do it anymore'! As soon as Christmas and New Years is over, I think I now have the strength to do what I have to do, that is to tell them 'I can't do it any more'. My health and marriage of 32 years are both a risk, please say a prayer for me to be able to do this without causing them and me too much emotional pain!
Im struggling! Im soo torn.. i take care of my mom, and dad.. i am an only child and im just getting more depressed by the day.. i looked into assisted living, but they cant afford it. They both have become very content.. All i do is spend my days and nights worrying about them.. i live with them. I started to see a therapist. Lets hope I find some relief soon
That is aLOT! Now you have said what you are doing for others and have listed all the others you feel responsible for - I do not see your own name there. You - we - have to learn to take care of ourselves. Find something that gives youa little relaxation, sense of relief. Talk it over with your sister - you are lucky to have her - find a way that you can care for your mother without destroying yourself. NO - you are not selfish! We all have our limits and you may have gone by yours - step back - get help - take a breath - and you can probably get a better perspective.
At least look for a place that does respite care - something you can use right now while she is going through this eye treatment. That way you can get some immediate help while you decide what to do. My local nursing home (connected with our hospital) provides respite care. I am not sure how it works with insurance but I think if they also do rehab - perhaps you can get her in under that.

But I know what you are going through - there was a while I thought I was going to go mad between work and my mother waking me up 4 or 5 times a night. In retrospect Ishould have taken a leave of absence from work but thought I could handle it all. It's not a good palce to be. Take care of yourself and do not think you are bad.
On this site you find you are not alone in what you are going through. That is such a big help, plus you get very good suggestions and help from those who have been there.

I am in the same boat as you...I don't know how much longer my husband and I can go on with this...it's been nearly 3 years living in her house with her! Nightmare. Our two daughters have even started giving us a piece of their minds and are being distant to us now. We learned a lesson that we should not tell our adult children everything that bothers us and we wont' anymore.

I am currently looking for a sitter to come in once a week so my husband and I can go somewhere together alone without mother. There is a treatment center here that you can bring your elderly parents to 5 days a week for 4 hours and once a month is a weekend where the elderly can spend the weekend...a break for the caregiver. Mother doesn't want to do any of this...she only thinks of her needs, not the needs of us.

I understand how awful it is. We finally last week went to our counselor at church...a professional Christian counselor for over 50 years now. We had to tell someone what we are going through. And, he suggested to start with sitters and then if that didn't work out, might need to look into other arrangements. We had to have our life, too.

When we moved her, left our jobs, family, church, friends, etc to care for our parents, we thought how wonderful it was going to be to help our parents. But, it went downhill from the beginning and now it is almost unbearable.

God bless you in this. Pray a lot. Take care.
Susan - No - you're not terrible, don't feel that way - that said, expect to feel guilty then practice letting it go. There is so much we want to do for our parents but the reality is that we can't. There is no escaping the guilt so you must practice letting it go. This condition means your mom is, frankly, bedridden while she undergoes this treatment. Can you talk with her doc and tell him you don't feel capable of taking care of her and ask him to admit her to a skilled nursing facility while she goes through this? If old enough, she should have medicare which will pay for up to 120 days provided the stay is intended to improve her condition to return home. It will give you a break and ensure that trained professionals are taking care of her needs. Once she's there you can talk with doctor and nursing staff about her condition and see if she should stay. You should not - you cannot - for the sake of your son, let your own health deteriorate to keep her at home.
Ummm. Well, I'd bet money you visited a lot at the convalescent home and did what you could to make her life better. And I would also bet one reason you placed her was that she was slipping away, rather than the other way around. If you had no options for home health help or respite and no lift equipment to get her out of bed or go anywhere, being at home was possibly more retrictive than the skilled nursing facility too; I would also bet you did not pick out a crummy one that just let her languish.

Now - one more thing to think about, namely this: She was 93 and in poor health. She might have lived longer, shorter, or the same if she had stayed with you in the best of circusmtances. THEN, you could have ended up feeling guilty that she might have done better or gone on longer in a care facility.

My mom is also in skilled nursing and just moved to hospice..I am going through whether to try to bring her home with all the help we could get and feeling the guilt of the little voice inside that says "Why is she not living with you?" There are reasons and answers to that which I won't go into right now, but I can't help admitting its a good question. Every single decision I've had to make has been hard and wracked with guilt over not having made the other one, even the ones that turned out to have been absolutely dead on. My son who I shared this with yesterday says its not logical and that if you made the decisions the way you did because you loved her they are right. I still say you could be loving but make the wrong decision, and of course be forgiven...so I guess a little angst is normal if you actually care about someone. And maybe a lot of angst is normal too. And maybe, if you had to balance your needs and other needs you take care of so that "what's best for mom" could not remain your one and only priority, that makes it harder yet...but I also don't think either your mom or mine would want to destroy and ruin our lives, if they understood that's what they were doing to us, after all the time and effort they put into raising us and giving us a future.
Joetta welcome to our group-glad to have you aboard-I remember the time I came uopn AC it had to have been an act of God-it just poped up on mt screen. You have taken a good step realizing that you can not do it anymore-I had to be told by a therapist that no one would rescue me I had to rescue myself and then others who had remained silent came forward. Do tell the family they have to make other plans for the care of your parents-no one will step up to the plate as long as they know they can depend on you-after all it is working for them very nicely-now they will get off their duffs and make arangements which probably will be placement-they will not put their marriages or health at risk-and let them know now after the first of the year they will have the job of doing what needs to be done-do not help you may want to advise them to turn to social services-every county has the resources to do this. Be firm and do not let thier nasty thoughts or words affect you-they will fight it with all their might-because they are happy with the way things are now. Keep posting and let us know how things are going-there are the most wonderful caregivers in the world here on AC-people who really get it.

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