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Hello..I've made it at last !! - Carers UK Forum

Hello..I've made it at last !!

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
After several failed attempts to do this (coward!)...here I am.
I have lived with and care for my 93 year old Mum for the last 18 months. She is brilliant really but I am finding it really hard having no time of my own. I'm worried about the cost of care agencies and have only used their services 3 times for 3-4 hrs over the last year when I have had doctor or hospital appointments.
I used to be self employed and have tried doing a little bit of work at home but have had to give up as Mum hates it if I'm out of the room for more than 10 minutes, and is constantly calling out to me, having forgotten where I am in the house.
She is a lovely and a very sociable lady but when I suggest trying perhaps a day centre for one or two days she looks so hurt and I then feel so guilty. Like so many others in far more difficult and challenging situations than my own, I do feel guilty for feeling more than a little resentful at times. I get no help from my brother or sister who both live over 100miles away and my two kids don't live locally and lead very busy lives. To be honest I don't know where to start.
Its so true from what I have already read about friends who evaporate !! I have moved away from my home area to be with Mum and as a result I see no one now. The initial visits soon lessened. I feel so cut off. I would really welcome any advice.
Hello..

Welcome to the forums..theres lots of friendly people on here .

Afraid i dont have any advice as my situation is different but wanted to say hi anyway .

Tracey x
Hello and welcome Image
I care for my mum too. You will find lots of support here! we are all very friendly Image Join in on roll call! you will find most of us there at several times of the day, you will be made very welcome. India.xx
Thank you to you both!! .. India77 and Tracey. Nice to know there are others out there who understand. The friends I have (by phone) are kind but dont appreciate that the day to day little problems and frustrations wear you down.
Hello joannarose, welcome to the forum
There is nothing to worry about - this is the friendliest forum I have found. You can ask specific questions, have a moan or just chat on roll call. Whatever you like. Have a look around and post where ever you want.
Hi JoannaRose and welcome to the forum Image

I so understand your situation, although my caring duties 'ended' earlier this year when my Mum passed away unexpectedly. I too moved in with her to care for her when her Alzheimer's meant that she could no longer live alone. I coped fairly well for the first year or so but after 3 years I was no longer able to continue full time and Mum moved into residential care. Like yours she wanted me in the same room with her all the time and it was very difficult to find time to myself - I used to get up at least an hour earlier than her in the mornings so that I could have some daily 'me' time on the computer ! I was lucky enough that my sister was able to 'give' me a few hours a week so that I could get out shopping and to run errands; but like you I found that 'friends' and other rellies didn't really want to know.

I would say don't give up on the idea of getting Mum to a Day Centre once or twice a week - it took me a while to persuade mine but once she got the hang of it she did enjoy it. Unfortunately the dementia meant that we it was 'new' to her each time she went and we did eventually have to give up on the idea, but a a number members here have elderly parents who go regularly and who love the company of their contemparies Image The point is that she needs to realise that you won't be able to continue the same level of care if you get sick through stress or depression so time out for yourself is very important.
I'm so very sorry about your loss of your Mum. It's lovely that you are willing to spend the time to reassure people like myself.
Thank you for your comments. I can already see the same reality of Mum attending the day centre ( every day being new!). I fully intend to carry this out. i have tried to explain to her that she would benefit from a change of environment as well as company just as much as I will.. but the face !!!
Her memory is so bad now. I was watching her this evening, watching tv..she just 'glazes over'. I can see that nothing is really registering. If i ask her whats just happened - she doesnt know...can't remember. It's just going thru the motions of watching familiar faces or objects on the screen. Her dementia is vascular. I have seen a real change in her since we moved here in March. In other ways she's so switched on. I always laugh when if anyone should ask if she would like a drink ..."tea, coffee or something else ?" As sharp as a razor she will immediately respond with.. "Ooh yes please..a G&T " her eyes light up !.
She is such a character. mum was always a keen golfer until she had to give up about 8yrs ago. So when we moved we joined the local golf club as social members so that she would be able to have a drink and watch the players as she used to. We went to the Christmas party ...she was up on the dance floor the whole evening.(when she wasn't drinking!) bless her..she had more life in her than most of the playing members half her age. No one could believe her age..it was lovely to see.
I only wish my brother and sister could see her enjoying herself like that. They don't have anything to do with her, or me. Owing to mums wishes to sell up and move to be with me. They wanted her to stay where she was and have daily care in a town where she no longer had any surviving friends and was so desperately lonely. My sisters only comment was " I'm sorry, but that's what getting old is about - she'll have to get used to it". ..that was enough for me! .and so after bullying visits from both sister and brother to the point where Mum locked herself in her home, drew the curtains closed in case they came back, I called social services and they recommended that I go and get her.
And so, after living with me in my 1 bed flat for 5 months we managed to find a new home that Mum absolutely loves. But it's been a bumpy ride ..I look back on the last 12 months and don't quite know how we've done it!.
Just 2 days after moving in, my 26yr old son came to visit from London, but he became so ill I rushed him into the nearest hospital (with Mum too). We were at the hospital all day, every day for the first week.. We nearly lost him. He had been told by a hospital in London that he had had severe food poisoning. He was diagnosed with the most severe case of ulcerative colitis, was transfused twice. He lost 3 stone in that week. They fought to save him from losing his entire bowel for a month. I've never been so frightened in my life. Trying to be around when the consultant made his bedside visits which always seemed to coincide with the untimely need for Mum to be taken to the loo was something I will never forget. I don't know how I kept my sanity. And poor Mum..she didn't always remember why he was even in hospital. She must have been so confused. But I seemed to cope with that and with extensive building work throughout the summer. But now I'm really struggling to cope.
I'm sure if I just get a few hours to myself I'll be fine. But now I can't wait for bedtime ...and for early mornings - that bit of 'me' time as you so rightly say.
Actually, I feel a bit better already just for having read your reassuring words. Thank you x
Not surprised you're exhausted after a year like that. You are NOT Superwoman, so don't expect to be. And I hate to say this, but you're not as young as you used to be either, this is the time of your life when you could normally expect to be taking it easy. If you have mum entirely dependent on you, then looking after your health has to be priority, because if you are ill, who is going to cope with both of you?
Hi, Just wanted to say hello and welcome, come over to roll call for a chat anytime, I care for my son fulltime so cannot offer any advice on caring for the elderly but just wanted to welcome you anyway. Image Sandra.
Image hi and welcome