For those who don't know me, my husband and I live with my mom who is 91 and has Alzheimer's and a weak heart. I take medication for depression but it still gets a hold of me. We rarely get out together as my mom can't be alone. My brother and sister live far gives us breaks maybe once or twice a year. Sister doesn't lift a finger. I've been doing this for almost 5 years and making other arrangements is not an option for me. My husband says I'll feel better in the spring. I don't know... Guilt goes along with the depression. If I don't do anything I feel guilty, but I some days don't feel up to doing a thing.

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It always seems to be dumped on one person! Random venting is good I think. I have felt so isolated, and for the first time in my 55 years of living, I have been put on antidepressants after having my 86 y/o dad living with me. He is verbally abusive and has dementia. My half sister and brother will have nothing to do with him. I feel better knowing that I'm not in this alone I guess, but I feel for everyone that is living this mightmare!
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You can add anxiety along with depression for me as well.
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Yes, I find myself constantly fighting off depression. There are so many emotions being a caregiver for a L/O including guilt and resentment. People keep telling me find time for yourself. It’s hard especially if your balancing a job and a family.
Sometimes I just want to screen! To make matters worse my L/O resents my so called taking over her life, and feels she can handle herself. Unfortunately 2 doctors, 2 social workers, 1 elder care counselor and family members say otherwise.

So yes, I’m fighting hard to keep me balanced.
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Absolutely! Everyone gets down with this overwhelming situation. It’s extremely frustrating and exhausting, physically and emotionally.
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Close to 100% of those who are. Your husband is wrong you won't feel better, you either need to accept further medical treatment for yourself for a problem that could be solved by removing the problem, or you remove the problem before it wrecks your health and makes you feel bitter and against your mom.
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Does the Pope wear a funny hat?
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NeedHelpWithMom Aug 2019
Oh my....I am also so very overwhelmed. U are so busy taking care of them & even tho u love them w/all your heart, it gets to be a lot. U get depressed yourself & exhausted. Just joined this forum.
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I also take medication since I started to take care of my Mom 24/7. I was good for bout a year and half. Then it all went south. Never have been a depressed person all my life. I also care for my husband who has congestive heart failure. I feel burned out most of the time. The meds help some but doesn’t change my life. I’m not sure I know how to have fun anymore. I keep trying to put on a brave face, but some days are harder than others. Hang in there, your not alone.
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If anyone says they don't get depressed from caring giving they are lying to themselves. It is one of the hardest jobs I can think of and I am speaking from experience. I have taken my mother to Florida to stay with my husband and I every winter for five years and after last winter I thought I would have a breakdown. When I take her home I usually stay with her about a month then go to my home an hour away and visit her at least weekly. My brother lives 30 minutes from her and rarely sees mom and my sister lives five minutes from her and provides a daily meal and takes her to appointments. I made the decision not to take her to Florida this winter as getting her to and from Florida was becoming dangerous trying to manage her alone to and from the airport. I decided it was time for my sister and brother to step up and do their part. I feel terribly guilty and my brother continues to not lift a finger. It is now Nov. and he hasn't visited mom since July. My sister has done more but doesn't spend quality time with her. You need to put your foot down with ur sister before you have a complete breakdown. Your health and welfare comes first as well as ur marriage. Have you ask for assistance from your county Area Office on Aging? Your mother might qualify for a few hours of care to give u a break. My mother just qualified for three hours of personal care and doesn't have to pay, it's worth checking out. Good luck, and you are not alone!
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Lea2019 May 2019
Where did The Department of Aging refer you to for personal care?
Titally, I don't know which way is up. I've been up for like 5 days cannot rest at a worrying about finances, taking care if 2 children, my mom, and my dad. I can't cope. My medication giving me worst than what I was before. I just wanna be able to deal with it all. Praying helps me slot but not to sleep.
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Yes. Care giving for narcissistic dad has sucked life out of me. I have so many
stress related illnesses now. And he's always behaving passive aggressively
to force me to do more. He's angry I don't spend more on him (he has plenty of funds for his own care, but wants mine too) . And he's enabled by a small army of hangers on that hope to avail themselves of his money, which he has apparently misrepresented to be in the millions. *Sigh* . Trying very hard
to gain a sense of humor about it. As we all know talking about anything other
than weather with narcissists just adds fuel to the fire. Caregiving can be depressing enough as it is.
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Yes, guilt and depression, guilt and depression, for 15 years, while she was living with me, and brother does not want to do anything...And even now, when she is in rehab and will be in Long term facility until I ll find (if I ll find) other possibilities to take care of her. With dementia and swallow problem and stubborn behavior she need to be watched 24/7 now...if you ask me do I feel better now, when she is not in my house? NO, guilt even stronger....Trying different anti anxiety medications and unfortunately alcohol...
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The depression is a daily, hourly presence. I do take Lorazepam a couple of times a week, but just to sleep better. I am so tempted to drink, but had a problem years ago so am trying very hard to avoid it. But right now a great margarita or a glass of good bubbly sounds amazing. Was on Vicodin for 4-1/2 years for pain but got off of it 8 years ago. I know I have addictive tendencies. I cry a lot, especially at night and I am silent most of the time, quick to anger and tired always. I rarely go out unless it is absolutely necessary -taking husband to Dr. appts, occasional,forays to the grocery store. But honestly, I just don't want to face people. I use Facebook and a few calls to friends to be my social ties. If my husband lives as long as His mother did with this horrible disease, I just hope I can survive it all and have some sort of "afterlife". I never want another man to deal with-ever. I will care for him until I cannot, as he was a good guy and we had a good marriage and he cared for me during my times of need. He has earned loyalty, and he is loved but if the violent behaviors keep happening, I will have to leave him to his kids. I lived in violence and cruelty as a young child and I will not subject myself to that. And yet I do find little gems that bring a smile, if not to my face, to my soul. For now that gets me by.
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As my 92 yo mom slides back to immobility, I find myself becoming so angry!
She apologizes for asking for a drink of water but that is the least of my problems!
I want her to move around. I want her to get up and go to the bathroom before she’s busting at the seams! I want her to stand up and sit down often enuf that her legs will support her.
She has her mental faculties and no life threatening ailments, but she sits so long she can’t walk to bed.
It’s bad enough that I’m in charge of all repairs with no experience and little money but now I’m wondering why bother? Why worry about the yard? Why should I fix the sprinklers if she doesn’t care enough to take care of herself?
I find myself berating her for killing herself when I want her to be comfortable. Now it seems I’m up all night every night dwelling on her deterioration and staying in my room all day so as not to yell at her.
It’s not helpful to bite my tongue because I’m still angry inside.
She’s had pt often enough she knows she has to use it or lose it but she refuses to do it!
Yes I’m depressed. I hate watching her becoming infirm and feeble just because she’s lazy!
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Val3rie Jul 2018
You are not alone! I have the same issues with both my husband and my MIL.
As well as several ailments, both of them have dementia and both of them have decided they cannot move around at all.
However I know my husband has depression which he says makes him feel as though he is trying to move through 'silly putty'.
The not moving to help themselves may also be the frustrating part of mental issues.
I get angry because my husband says 'he can't' take a shower. But he can get up and ask me what I am cooking for supper or watch Netflix.

I don't think we can make sense of these things.
Very frustrating.
Old Sailor, My wife died Apr 3rd. Although I knew the time was very near, I am still reeling. But feel I did My best by entering her into a care facility..,Although second guessing has caused me to lose a lot of sleep. Hope things are better for you my friend. Ren
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About 20 years ago, my husband started feeling painful aching and stabbing all over his body. Imaging showed that every joint was inflamed. New symptoms kept being added, with new diagnoses for each--but never any single over-arching explanation. A dozen years ago, he started to need my help. Seven years ago, he was fired for being unable to do his work, and shortly thereafter he was pronounced completely disabled for any kind of work, he started to receive disability payments, and I had to stop all outside work to care for him. Following is a poem I wrote this year. I wonder if it is relatable to any of you?

The Rest of My Possible World

I dreamt of grace and wisdom.
My mother’s virtues, surpassed.
Yet now I face each troubled day.
And cannot find the heart.

Not refined, knowing, good.
I failed to reach the best I could.
I am not one who rose above
I’ve rarely touched the best I can.

Dreamers live for what should be
And toil to make it real.
True hybrid breeds improve growth
Spreading forests in moral soil.

I wasted time believing ours
Would thrive from our Great Love
I never braced my own two feet
To stand in my own earth

The concealed weeds, parasites
Have sundered spine from limbs
And mortified our spirits through
till life is sand in open hands
And health is our despair.

Would-be grace succumbs to pain
Lost memory hobbles wit
And virtue has no tread where vigor’s grip is lost

Hope for joy now passed to offspring’s eyes.
May they persist in strength, and wisdom reach;
and health and courage keep their road ahead.

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You are in good company. I am thrilled that I have found this resource and know that champions WE ARE and that the Golden Rule still exists.
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@ Eddie
I know this was posted 8 years ago but I just read the phrase "Screaming Into the Night" and I must say I Laughed Out Loud.

Thank you
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@mizunderstood10 - Stay strong and you will get through it. But reading your story I realize that when I was my mother’s caregiver as an only child, that I probably was clinically depressed too now. But I tried to hold it all together and put on a happy face for my 3 children and for my job, as I’m a medical sales rep. But eventually when your mother passes away or she has to go into an assisted living facility - you WILL find peace. I know when the really bad 4 years we endured were over, I felt like a terrible burden was lifted off my shoulders, even going into the dark winter times. And you will too. I wish you the best. Stay strong and keep the faith
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I am caring for my husband who sinks deeper into his roller coaster of dementia, along with his paranoia, accusations and obsessive behaviors every night and day. He was recently placed on seroquel and it does help some, but as I look to a future of incontinence, and the worsening of already sad and awful changes in the man I have loved for so long, I find my depression worsening by the week. I see only anger and confusion on his face, and in the anger I see the horrors perpetrated on me by an abusive stepfather. My birth mom died at age 32 and I saw my real father only 4 times in my life. I was raised by my mom's loving sister and her husband who knew nothing about my past. I have been in therapy off and on, but this journey has undone so much of that. I meditate, and appreciate things in nature, and the brief moments when the man who was my husband appears. I have sweet grandchildren and a couple of involved children. But my days stretch out in a seemingly unending litany of sadness and exhaustive nights, as I try, as finances allow for so little. To maintain my own health. 
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Rosyday, I can so relate. Antidepressants do not work for me and have horrible side effects - and think about what it says that we're supposed to take medications ourselves because caregiving is so hard?

Sometimes I wish I could run away but Mom needs me.
My life is basically over. This is just reality. I'm coming to think that caregivers don't have lives.
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Rosyday: Oh, yes. After yet another horrific day and already burned out and exhausted, I walked my dogs for the day's final time at night like I always do. I kept walking. The only reason I turned back was I had to go through downtown on a Saturday night and the nervousness forced me to turn back. Otherwise I was going to walk for miles. It hurt like crazy to turn back and return to Mom's house.
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Well, Old Sailor, After my wife fell and broke her hip eight weeks ago, had total hip replacement, spent two weeks in rehab, i finally had to admit her to a private care facility. Most difficult thing I've have ever done in my life after sixty two years of marriage. She has been there a couple of weeks now receiving more PT but isn't doing very well there. My hope is that she is receiving better care than I could continue to give her and that now I can get a little relief from the thirty two hour days. But, I am finding the adjustment very difficult. Only time will tell I guess. Have a good day. Ren
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I do when I have to clean the kitchen floor at three in the morning or rent a carpet extractor to remove the water after a bathtub error.
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I took care of my mother for 17 years before getting her in an Assisted Living place a couple years ago. She was in her home, in a wheelchair with an ostomy. It got harder and harder over the years. One time I was driving to get groceries just outside town. Something snapped in me and I drove 100 miles before I came back to myself and reluctantly returned. No one really knows how it feels, do they?
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@ Mojorox,

I’ll take your word on the promise that if you write a book I can count on a copy, hopefully autographed!

My agenda with contact names has become one where the “U” (as in Useless, to your very well made point) includes uncountable pages..!! I completely empathize.

But your story about the bed being wet, your sister not grasping WHY you were crying, her not caring to to a thing about the bed or your mom AND!!!..leaving to get dinner..not bringing you any and going to her bedroom to eat...!!! Lord Almighty, It’s hard to believe things like this actually happen in life. I’m so, so sorry Mojorox from my heart!

All of the sudden you completely made me realize I am actually lucky to not have anybody that I “should” be able to rely on. What I mean is I know that there are plenty of people that if they had a conscience and a heart and know my situation, I’d imagine and hope would be willing to help..but I’m an only child, all of that would be a ‘great to have’, not a ‘should have’...because that simply opens widely the door for deep if the situation of being a caregiver wasn’t enough reason for a heartbreak!

Hope that makes sense.

My mom’s birthday was yesterday, I worked SO hard, honestly, to make the day shine a little for her. She literally had spent at least two weeks literally in bed, not seeing the sun light, feeling bad. So finally got her in decent physical shape enough to get up, get dressed, and have a couple of her friends over to break her sickness routine for a day. I realized once again how lonely I’m in more than a thousand ways. People simply don’t realize what my world, our world is, and I also realized that I cannot hope for an ounce of understanding.

It’s a lonely life Mojorox, but at least we know there are others that are living what I like to call different shades of the same story. At least a little consolation!

I don’t keep writing because I’m so tired I need to close my eyes. Hope your week is going better. Take care!
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If I ever had the gumption to write one I'd send you a signed copy promise.

Continuing from where I dozed off.....of others took an interest then heaven forbid, they might have to participate and contribute. Much easier to tell themselves everything is fine when they see nothing. If and when they find out how hard it's been and how hurt you are, then they can whip out the "well, I didn't know" defense.
I am very familiar with the token effort as well. People have offered to help and if I don't have a specific task right then or distractions get in the way, later when I say something, I get attitude with "well, I asked you".
There are days where I am desperate for help and other days where I believe it's better for my sanity that they stay away.
Being invisible is an awful, lonely feeling bit it was better when I could tell myself that they just didn't know what I was going through. Now, that they've seen first hand all the work and effort, along with all the stress and sickness, liberally coated with cries for help, and they CHOOSE to ignore it, I feel worse than ever.
At first, they gave me props. Thanked me. I felt i had a support system. I dont know what happened. But as I grew weary and began to ask for help, the props lessened. As I began to get frustrated and react, I was abandoned. Unless, they need something of course.
Heavy sigh.....

Here's an example from last summer's fiasco when I needed to purge mom of her hoarding this point I had spent 2 weeks holidays working at home. Every day, every waking moment, never left the house except to walk the dogs (and one was my sister's). I had returned to work on week 3 and was 4 days in still having to do EVERYTHING while sister did ???????
At this time mom was very wobbly and was having troubles getting around, dressed etc. The incontinence was ridiculous. A constant stream of accidents and a wet bed working me to death.

Thursday night, after a full week of work, doing sister chores, mom chores, my stuff, maybe eat at 2am, I'm exhausted and one frayed nerve is all I have left. I've done the priority tasks and that's good enough for the evening. I just can’t do one.more.thing. I just need to make it through one more day of work and then I can breathe.

Before I make my great escape downstairs, mom takes a little spill in her bedroom. Mojorox to the rescue! While helping mom up and off to the washroom, sis emerges from her room (staying with us at the time) and surveys the scene. Mom has wet the bed I had just finished changing…….I can feel the emotion rising like Vesuvius and tell mom I’ll be back in 15 minutes to clean the bed. I go downstairs and begin to shake. I pour myself a giant shot from the liquor cabinet and begin to cry and can’t stop. Trying to count to 10 and remember to breathe. Sis walks in and looks at me in surprise “Why are you crying?”.
I have no words. I can only look at her in dismay…She exits. I finish my shot and pull it together. I go up thinking sis has started to change the bed and it’s always easier with 2 people.

Wrong. So very wrong.
She is nowhere to be found. She actually left the house without telling me after mom just had a fall and there’s a wet bed to contend with!!!!

I change the bedding and throw all the wet stuff out in the hall. Done. That’s when my sis walks in with food in hand. Now she has the room across from mom’s so she has to step over all the sheets, blankets, pillows etc to get to the door. “Do you need a hand changing the bed?”

Ummmm. No, I’m already done. Duh.
Does she follow through her offer to help by taking the soiled down to the laundry room and start a wash while I get mom back to bed?

Bwahahahahahhahah. No.
She goes into her room to eat her dinner or whatever. Since I’m starving and was not offered any, I proceed to cook my own damn dinner.

It’s 2am on a work night.
This is when her name changed to useless.

This was also the night before I found out that she was leaving and would not look after mom for my last week of holidays.
That was when I told her she was no longer my sister.
It would be too easy to say that I feel invisible. Instead, I feel painfully visible and entirely ignored. In my moments of greatest need.

I know that I said I would try to not dwell on the negative but I am having a hard time.
We are experiencing a minor crises with mom’s legs and my sister who has been too crazy busy at work to help me has gone up to visit useless these past 2 weeks and help her instead. She’s supposed to be my back-up with mom and couldn’t even bother to tell me she was leaving out of town. Wow.

With a very heavy heart I say “People Suck”
Depressed? Doesn’t even begin to cover it…..
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That’s good, funny and realistic..A wrinkle in time..A caregiver descent into madness!! (I’m getting there at a furious pace by the way!)

And don’t worry because I literally fell sleep as I typed the last few sentences of my previous message. Next day I didn’t know if I had finished my thought and sent it...just part of the madness and tiredness of our life!

If you do write a book please make sure it can be shipped overseas or bought online! ;-)
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Hahaha haha. .....fell asleep and didn't finish the message. Must have hit send by accident. Late for work too today.

Just another day in the life......

Will try to come back and finish the thought later.
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What a cool compliment, thank you. Wow, I forgot what it felt like to be noted on something that doesn't involve mom. Like I'm actually a real person.

"A Wrinkle in Time: A Caregiver''s Descent into Madness"

Written dear diary style and saying all the things that caregivers don't say aloud.

People have selective attention. They see and hear what they want. If they paid attention to you and your mom's situation (existence? )
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