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Carer Depression - My Story - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Carer Depression - My Story

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
Jake_1911 wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:33 pm
Thanks for all the kind replies guys. I dunno what I'm even feeling to be honest. I feel guilty for even saying any of these things like I'm in the wrong. Then again this whole opening up things is new to me. This is the first time I've properly done it. Maybe I'm just being too sensitive mum would always say about Manning up. God I don't know. Honestly I feel like I am experiencing 2 people's emotions at once and I can't figure out which is actually mine and if the other is just what manipulation feels like.
I think feeling conflicted is utterly normal. All of us are here because we do "care" emotionally and literally for our loved ones. We want what is best for them but feel sad/frustrated/guilty because this often in direct conflict with what we want in out own lives.

At the end of the day it is probably about achieving some kind of balance. That takes into account their needs and out own. This generally means getting some outside help in. When I found my way to the forum (I think it was around 3 years ago now) I was utterly broken. I was caring for 2 elderly parents with my sister plus 2 small children. My sister blamed me for not doing more. I felt I was already at full stretch. I was depressed, my sister was physically ill. We lurched from crisis to crisis. It was an utter mess. I felt guilty and sad and at times really hated by parents. Which didn't feel great.

The forum helped me to realise that there comes a point when you just can't do it all anymore. It taught me that I was important too. It taught me that you are not responsible for someone else's happiness. It taught me to stop feeling guilty. Nothing about your Mum's situation is your fault. You have nothing to feel guilty about. Feel sad for her. Feel sad for you and your sisters. But ditch the guilt. You should feel proud of all you have done over the years. Not guilty that you don't want to give over your young life to caring.

Things are better for me now. I had given up work because I couldn't do it all. I now have a job. Dad died this year. But Mum is living at home with me and my sister doing some caring and outside help the rest. I work part time because I still want to care for her. It has been about finding a better balance. I have a better relationship with my Mum now I don't feel resentment towards her.

Best of luck. Have a really good think about what you would like out of life. If your weren't a carer what would you like to do?
Jake_1911 wrote:
Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:33 pm
Thanks for all the kind replies guys. I dunno what I'm even feeling to be honest. I feel guilty for even saying any of these things like I'm in the wrong. Then again this whole opening up things is new to me. This is the first time I've properly done it. Maybe I'm just being too sensitive mum would always say about Manning up. God I don't know. Honestly I feel like I am experiencing 2 people's emotions at once and I can't figure out which is actually mine and if the other is just what manipulation feels like.
It IS manipulation. Hopefully now you can access support not just for her but for yourself too. How old is your little sister now? Has a needs assessment been done? That is the first step of the process. Call your local council on Monday and ask for a social worker to come and carry out a needs assessment.
A financial assessment also should be done ideally at the same time. Make sure to obtain a copy of the assessment report detailing findings by the social worker as well. You might need it later on. Keep all reports together in one place in a folder. Is she always been this way or not?
Don’t listen to her. I hope that you start trying to access counselling or some kind of emotional support too. A therapist is also recommended.
Jake - please don't allow your mum to treat you in this way.
You should be out enjoying yourself.
Decide what you would like to do - paid work or more studying.
If your mum hasn't got much money then she might well be entitled to outside carers for free.
I guess your mum is about 50 years old. She could need help for the next 30 years .
If you start respecting yourself - then your mum will start respecting you. But it won't happen overnight.
The fact a little toddler is involved (and you obviously love her very much) makes things more difficult.
When your mum gets angry with you or is nasty to you then say 'I am not going to have a conversation with you while you're shouting at me'. Then walk away from her, into a different room or upstairs. Stay calm.
Hello Jake. It is bad enough that you have a manipulative mum but your situation is more complicated than most because of your mum's latest daughter. On your own admission, and understandably, you have developed a parental-type bond, though it would be more orthodox for you at your age to be aspiring towards marriage and having a child of your own. You seem to have started in this direction but stalled.

You don't seem to have said anything about your father, or baby sister's father. Is either of them still on the scene? Are they the same person? Our knowledge of this could be helpful.

Your mum is not treating you well, and you do not have a moral duty to care for her. Hence the wise advice from others is to arrange a needs assessment.

I realise that it would be a wrench if you needed to distance yourself from your baby sister but you could still maintain some sort of contact at a comfortable distance. You are young and still have time to sort out a better life for yourself; just don't keep delaying.

Also on your admission, you are suffering from guilt feelings. "Love your neighbour as yourself" is a great principle, embedded in Christianity and other faiths. However if you are seen to be too caring, this principle can be exploited by others towards their selfish ends. Learn how to deal with this with dignity.

Bowlingbun recommended a good book, and I'd like to recommend another. It is When I Say "No" I Feel Guilty, by Dr Manuel J Smith, ISBN 0-553-20977-9. It is available from Amazon, or if you prefer you could try E-bay, or your local bookshop could possibly get it for you. It's absorbing reading and great advice!