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A break through - finally - Carers UK Forum

A break through - finally

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Well what a week I have had and it isn't about to end any time soon.
It all started just over a week ago (Thursday) when mother started to feel unwell. We weren't sure where the illness came from and have been trying to establish where she had been. Shopping the previous Sunday and then out for a meal. A friend came round on Thursday with mothers fags from overseas and as she started to feel unwell in the afternoon can only assume that my friend was carrying some virus? She went to bed in the afternoon and stayed there.
Friday I had to go to the hospital for my preop, I was to be having a hernia op the following Saturday, however got the call to say they were moving it to the Monday, mother still in bed so made sure all was okay with her before I left.
Weekend was the same mother stayed in bed, I made sure she had plenty of fluids and her meds as well as some chesty cough medicine.
Monday I made sure that everyone was sorted out for when I was to go to the hospital, mobile phone charged and by mothers side (she had come downstairs by now). Tea was prepared and ready just to warm up, meds sorted. At least I felt good about leaving her the night as my neighbours would look in on her if necessary.
Had my op and not a very good night but came home Tuesday lunch time, just in time to make mother her lunch, though she didn't want much it was to make sure that I knew my place.
I did get annoyed but didn't say anything when feeling not too good (it was still less than 24 hours after my op), mother gets up and wobbles and staggers into the kitchen, huffing and puffing (she hadn't done it before and not since) just to bring home the point to me that she is not well. I breathe deeply and carry on watching telly.
The point to this is finally my neighbours can understand what I go through because they came round to see how I was and mother put on a performance worthy of an Academy Award. When they were leaving they said at the door what a performance and that mother didn't like the fact that they came to see me and not her (even though they did ask how she was).
Yes I understand that she isn't feeling well, even though she has had the flu jab, takes her vitamins everyday as well as Echinacea, so she isn't sure how she has got this virus.
I took her to the doctor on Thursday and she was given antibiotics so hoping that she feels better soon. I was annoyed that it took an hour before the doctor saw her, I was sitting in the car as I didn't want to go into the surgery in case I caught something. I did go in and was about to tell mother that we were going home when the doctor came out and I am afraid to say that being in pain, I told her off, felt better for it but it fell on deaf ears.
So we are both home, mother keeps going to bed during the day complaining she is sore and aching, I let her go because that means I can relax and heal whilst contemplating what to cook her that will be nutritional and will eat.
I really enjoyed my respite in hospital even though it was for less than 24 hours but it has been made up for since.
Though I am still in considerable pain, I just have to carry on because as I have been told I get paid to look after her and must do my duty and job.
My joy throughout this is that fact that finally someone has seen what mother does because they have always said that I exaggerate, well not any more Image As the saying goes he who laughs last......
Im glad you managed to get the op done kiwigaz, but look after yourself as it takes several weeks to heal DO NOT lift anything in that time - get someone else to do it.
Elderly/disabled people often cant see anything from anyone else view point, so just let it wash over you. In the meantime, rest as much as you can, try to ignore her histrionics, and make life as easy for yourself as possible - what about ready made food for a while?
Thanks Crocus, unfortunately there isn't anyone to help so just have to do it all myself though I am pacing myself.
I have to wear the surgical stockings for 6 weeks which is hilarious and am not lifting anything as there isn't much else to do around home Image
Done all the housework today so that is it for another week.
Mother gone back to bed for the afternoon so can now chillax for the rest of the day.
Easy tea tonight Image
Hi ZiwiGaz

Nice one about the neighbours. You're right, he who laughs last, laughs the longest and all that.
It must have been really demoralising knowing that people thought you were exaggerating... no longer!
Lay off any heavy lifting, or you'll end up at square one again. My Sil ignored doc's advice after a similar op and ended up in agony. If the place ends up a bit of a tip, so be it. That's easily rectified once your 100% (or as near as damn it) again. Your body is more important than house work.

Hope you get better soon X
Hang on a minute, what's happened to your free 6 weeks help because you've just had an operation? Those sexy socks are an absolute nightmare. Didn't anyone do a pre op assessment and ask if you were a carer? They should have laid on some extra help. Ring the hospital and SSD and tell them you need someone to give you a hand!
Who is it tells you you are being paid to look after her and so must carry on with the job?

If it is her, then how much are you being paid, and how much does that work out per hour? If it is less than the minimum wage then you are NOT being paid to look after her! And even if it is on the minimum wage, all employees are entitled to lunch breaks, eight hour working days no more, paid holidays, etc etc.

You get the picture I hope.

ie, if you ARE your mother's 'employee' (!) then she has to treat you like one, and give you your employee rights in law (ie, precise working hours not in excess of what normal work is, paid holiday, etc). If you are NOT being paid, then she has no argument - and you can tell her to put her 'indignation' where the sun don't shine!!!!

Remember, above all, we get the treatment we put up with. So just don't, don't, don't put up with all her 'theatricals'!

All the best, and get well soon (but not TOO soon if you get my drift!)

(Was she selfish and demanding and self-pitying before you became her carer? Some people are, and therefore don't change - or just get worse! - but some complete 'angels' can turn into monsters once they need someone else to look after them.)
Yes I did have a preop assessment at the hospital and I mentioned that I was my mothers full time carer, didn't make any difference apart from the fact that I had to stay in hospital for the night as there wasn't anyone responsible at home for the first 24 hours.
Help what is that and free help, never heard of it must be something rich people get.
Even when I had my carpal tunnel ops on both hands 7 weeks apart I was told that I should be entitled to help but when I asked about it was told that up this way you have to pay for it and I don't see why I should pay someone up to £10 per hour to look after my mother and home when I don't even get paid any where near that.
Different counties must have different ideas, Stoke is a poor deprived area in desperate need of regeneration and so do I lol. I get paid £59 per week to look after my mother 24/7 and because I own my own home I don't get any other help.
Even my very good neighbours don't help, not because they don't want to but they have always known me to be independent and capable but it wouldn't cross their minds just to walk in and say sit down I will make you a cuppa, why because they would have to contend with mother for too long.
And Jenny I have heard it from quite a few people around me that have mentioned that I am getting paid to look after my mother, you would be surprised at how many. But if I did work the hours at the basic rate then it would only be 9 hours per week.
Sounds like I am complaining but am not really, I am just getting on with what I have to do and cope with a situation that has occurred.
That is why I love this site, just to get it off my chest because no one in my life understands what I am going through and therefore can't empathise with me, I don't want sympathy- I need support.
Anyway what is the worst that can happen, I could die or end up in hospital - I win both ways at least I would have a break. Image But then again if that happened the DWP would take away my money and then I would have to go through weeks/months to try and get it back, so not worth it will just plod on regardless and as Spamalot say "Always look on the bright side of life ..."
Well I live in an affluent area and had an operation in a private hospital (paid for from compensation after a serious car accident) and even I got the free 6 weeks care - but I had to nag the hospital as the nurse I asked to deal with it didn't know what I was talking about. The scheme is run by Social Services, in my area it's called "Welcome Home" in others it's "Renablement Team". I was 57, so it's not just for the elderly either, another common misconception. It's to help you do things which you can't do after an op, ie. in your case lifting heavy things, washing your feet if you can't bend enough to do it yourself because of the op etc. etc. The nurse I had was lovely, wanted to do more for me, but really the only thing I couldn't do was wash my feet and put fresh compression socks on. My eldest son lived with me by the way. Social Services are also supposed to have special services for carers who are ill, so you should have help on both counts. I do hope you can get something sorted, it's so important after an operation to rest and recover properly.
(Was she selfish and demanding and self-pitying before you became her carer? Some people are, and therefore don't change - or just get worse! - but some complete 'angels' can turn into monsters once they need someone else to look after them.)
In reply to this, yes my mother has always been like this, always has expected us to help her and be there for her. She never liked having family together and made it her task in life to keep my siblings apart, just so she could talk about them behind their backs. Even now we don't talk and they don't talk to her either (coming up 18 years).
My mother threw me out of the family because I brought shame on the family as I had a mental breakdown in my 20's and she forbid any family member from speaking to me for nearly 20 years. She never accepted my wife (now ex) or children and still doesn't acknowledge them as her grandchildren.
She came back to England to get married again however unfortunately her second husband died suddenly just short of their 3rd anniversary. So since then I am the only one in her life. I did go to Australia for 4 years but the constant complaining that she couldn't cope and how bad things were with her mobility and sight, I came back - it was all just a ploy to get me back to look after her.
Now I have lost all my family and friends, so therefore it is only my mother and myself. I don't expect her to ever change and have to except this as my lot in life however long it may last.
Good Lord - do you say you own your own home, but now have to have your dreadfully selfish mother dumped on you? Can't you just insist she goes into care, and wash your hands of her?

You sound, if I may say so, just so ground down that you have simply given up any thought of a life of your own. I don't say this to be critical, quite the opposite! I do think that extended caring tends to beat us right down into the ground, and we almost become 'willing slaves' to our tyranical carees, and lose the ability to remember we once had lives of our own. Let alone that we are entitled to them!

I am no psychologist, but I wonder whether you are suffering from 'co-dependency' where the inside of your head has been so, so twisted by the person who has forced you to care for them (despite their appalling treatment of you in the past, as well as in the present), that you have someone come to 'rely on their relying on you'. It's a kind of 'Stockholm Syndrome' almost, whereby you become bonded to the people exploiting and abusing you.

Again, I'm probably wading in here with both left feet, but your mother sounds, quite frankly, highly mentally disturbed - and I don't mean just now, but always. Her behaviour to her family sounds totally deranged! How come you have got yourself landed with her? I take it your siblings have escaped her malignity somehow?

To be honest, I really don't know why you are putting up with her at all, or enduring the life you seem to be living.....

If you put her in a home (ignore her howls of outrage!), could you not finally get your life back together again???

This is NOT your lot in life! You have given in and given up, because of her appalling behaviour. Please, please believe that you ARE entitled to something more than what you are enduring now. NO ONE should give their lives up to such a tyrant, as you are now doing.