Unless you're a Caretaker, you do not Understand

My husband and I have been taking care of my mom for years. First in her apt for 5 years and now she has been living with us for a year (she's 85).

Things are not good here and haven't been for awhile, but you all know what I mean.
We do the best we can but it's stressful and frustrating doing this.

Well my brother called to ask my husband for a favor. It was a bad time to do this because my husband blew up at him and hung up the phone. He said enough is enough.

My brother and other siblings don't help out with my mom and my husband has had it with my family because of this

My brother called me back and wanted to know why my husband is so upset. I tried to explain it to him, how hard it is for us to be the ones to handle all of this without his help or the the help of the others,
HE just didn't understand at all. He never will either because he is not in this position.

Unless you have done this, you can't imagine what is involved or how it affects your life.

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I fully get it
by: Anonymous

I have basically become a shell of the person I used to be 10 yrs ago. Yes 10 yrs taking care of elderly demanding mother with no help from siblings. Not one day off. NOT ONE!

I will never recover from this and mom will likely outlive me. I'm 55. No friends. No life. No leaving the house for more than an hour. And zero gratitude.

This has destroyed my life. If you're in a similar situation, get out now! Or kiss yourself goodbye.

Frustrated daughter
by: Anonymous

I read all you comments and I can relate to each and every one of you!
My mom is 94-moved her in with my husband and myself 4 years ago. She is sweet and kind and is sharp as a tack. She does use a walker and is in good health.

Since she has been here all she wants is me.i am an only child and it is all on my shoulders. She wants to be with me 24/7 and she seems to think I am still that little girl who needs mothering. She is constantly in my business. If I work outside in the yard, she watches me from inside.

If I talk to neighbors, even for 5 minutes, she will ask me the second I come in, what did you and Donna talk about, what did she say! I seem to always have to announce what I’m doing, where I’m going, what am I doing in the bedroom, why was I in the shower for so long, what am I doing in the kitchen, , why am I outside so long etc......

All of her family and friends has passed away and I am her everything! Whenever I leave the house she is in the car with me. When I am invited to go anywhere she seems to think she is also invited and expects to go!

I feel like all I do is cook,clean, do laundry and just sit with her while she watches another episode of jeopardy and wheel of fortune. (While my husband is in the other room watching tv) Whenever she sees I’m annoyed she reminds me that she took care of me as a child and now it is my turn to take care of her!

Whenever I go back at her about something she said she reminds me that SHE IS MY MOTHER AND DONT TALK TO HER LIKE THAT!

My husband and I have not been on a vacation since my dad died which has been 12 years. When she was living in her house we did go away overnight a couple times but we were not even gone for 24 hours. Now that she lives here she doesn’t want to be alone at night.

My husband is retired now and we had all these plans of going away and just being foot loose and fancy free.........and we can’t. We are getting older, 66+62. I feel she is stealing our golden years, we thought we would be living the good life and I am watching my husbands health declining and being with her all the time makes me feel old.

So, if any of you is even thinking a little about moving in an elderly parent, I would say "don’t do it" once they are in-you will never get them out! It will change you life.

I also what to add that before she moved in we were great friends! It all just seems very intrusive and I feel like I am resenting her for being so smothering and I feel she keeps me on a short leash.

I have talked to her a little about this and she tells me I’m being selfish.

I tell myself it could be worse. She doesn’t have any memory loss whatsoever, so for that I am extremely thankful.

I can’t talk to my friends about my feelings as they don’t seem to understand, so I stopped talking to them about this. I must have sounded like a horrible daughter.

I would love to go to a counselor or therapist but she knows where I am every second of the day and I would not be able to ever leave the house without her wanting to know where I am going and why am I going to a counselor? "Suck it up and get over it" is what she would say.
Thanks for listening..

took the words right out of my mouth
by: dawn infinity

Oh yes , everyone has hit the nail on the head , ppl who are not caregivers do not understanding how stressful ,tiresome it can be for us,

we do need in between breaks ,but we cannot let it affect our spirit &body , we have to learn to slow down take it easy by golly we deserve it & we need it so ladies &gentleman.

slow down take it easy &remember don't let anyone or yourself underrate you ,we can only do the best we can on this earth we are not seraphim angels yet,until god takes us home. hugs everyone. dawn

She Doesn't Understand
by: Anonymous

I am 67 years old and have been taking care of my mother for 8 years. She is now 90 years old and has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. My daughter is an RN and used to work with dementia patients so she thinks that she understands what I am going through. She does not!

You don't understand until you do it. It is maddening! I love my mother but I am to the point where I can't stand her and do whatever I need to do to avoid being around her in the house. I can't go anywhere for more than a couple of hours because she doesn't need to be left alone.

Being my mother's caretaker is absolutely the hardest job I have ever had. I have made arrangements to place her in a nursing home in a couple of weeks. She is going to be upset but I am at the latter part of my life too. Don't i deserve a life also?

Better Words Never Spoken
by: Anonymous

You are so right. I’ve been taking care of my mom for eight years. I’ve tried to keep my brother in the loop, explaining everything that is going on, always have him up to date on everything. And he still doesn’t get it. And he never will. The one thing he says all the time to me is "you’re amazing." And then its Bye now. Catch you later.

We cannot bring our siblings in to help us because they are not the same kind of people that we are. And they never will be. It’s not in their personality, it’s not their character, it’s not who they are.

Today is Thanksgiving. I get a text message from my brother saying happy Thanksgiving. I tell him I called 911 on mom last night because she was nauseous and vomiting. He writes back a couple comments. And then I explained that I had to wash the bed sheets three times during the night. And now hes done with the conversation and I don’t hear back from him again.

I guess he had to go put the turkey in the oven or feed the dog. I don't know. I feel like when this situation gets down to the nitty-gritty he can’t handle it. And I have to stop expecting him to be someone he’s not, and just know that I am a person who can handle it.

I’m done with useless expectations. My advice to all of you, just let it go.

you're right
by: Anonymous

You are exactly right. People have no clue. They don't understand how your life has turned upside down, you never have time alone anymore,. and basically you have given up your independence so that someone else can maintain theirs.

When I had my mom move in two years ago even I had no idea. It's hard enough when you've lived your life independently and even just someone comes and stays awhile, but throw in the confusion and oddities of dementia, old age, and Alzheimer's and it becomes a daily boiler keg.

I've learned to just not rock the boat and given up just about everything I used to do which causes inner rage that eats you alive. For instance, I dreamed when I worked of dark rainy days when I could grab a throw, cuddle up with my dog on the couch and binge watch TV. I tried it once.

It's something out of the ordinary so it brought on questions and because she can't remember she asked them before, she asks them twenty times until you're just ready to cry and give up. "Are you sick? Why are you on the couch? Aren't you getting dressed today? Do you need to go to the doctor?" and on and on and on.

I feel like I'm also 87 years old just living with her. Nightgowns must be on by 7:00 and if I stay up after she goes to bed she keeps getting up, aren't you going to bed? Just leave me alone!

Lately she's mixing up her days and nights so we rarely sleep past one in the morning anymore. Naps are at noon and if I don't take one then she won't either and she needs one.

Sigh............I get out once a week to get groceries. It's a treat to go to Walmart, but then when I get back I'm met with, "You were gone all day! What did you do, buy the whole store?"

I don't have siblings to even ask in sharing this and if I were you I would be furious that it was all put on me. From other posts on here, that seems to be a very common problem and then at the end those are the people holding their hand out the quickest for what they think they deserve.

Hang in there. I will because we just have to. My motto in life these days: It is what it is.

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