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New Here - Carers UK Forum

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Hi All,

Just thought I would say hi and post a thread to the forum. Naively, I didn't think there was a forum/place for people in my position until I was curious looking this week. I have been caring for my Mum since about 10/11 years old (although I never realised I was caring until very recently - I just kind of got on with it as I am sure many of us have done and do). She has had very fluctuating mental health problems for pretty much all her life but this only got more serious around 16 years ago.

I am sure I will find this site/forum very useful going forward and look forwarding to getting some tips - Like others, I have experienced the guilt / balance of trying to have a 'life' myself and equally care at the same time.

Hope you all have a great rest of your weekend :)
Hi G737 & Welcome

It never ceases to amaze how many people still don't recognize themselves as being a family member/carer.

Hopefully, today system/s pick up child carers much earlier. Schools are more proactive in identifying young carers.

I am sure with all your years of caring. You will help many people on this forum.
I started caring after mum had my younger brother, he's 8 years younger than me. He used to call me his "No 2 mummy" and I did lots with him. I remember being in the recreation ground with him one day and someone thought he was my son, not my brother!!!
I married at 19, I don't think he ever forgave me, then we went to live in Australia for 3 wonderful years. By the time we came back, in 1976, mum never left home alone apart from doctors appointments. The surgery was down her road, but sometimes she took a taxi. Summer holidays my older brother and I went to stay with our grandmother in Devon for 6 weeks.
Dad was a top government scientist who worked abroad a lot, and I was expected to do things for mum when he was away.
It took counselling when I was 60 to realise that I was still behaving like a dutiful obedient child that never said "No" to my parents.
If I could have my time again things would be very different.
Hi both and thank you for your replies.

I really hope so - To be honest, even though I have been doing this for 16 years, it has only been more recently that carers of people who suffer from mental health have started to get support it seems - I vaguely remember that when I was at school, because my mum didn't have a physical disability, it didn't seem as 'serious'. It is only now looking back I think how that support from a child point of you would have been so vital.

@Bowlingbun - That is interesting what you said about moving out to Aus and not being forgiven. I am sure like you, I have had worries and concerns that if I have a life, am I being selfish etc which is never ideal - It is amazing with hindsight how you would deal with things differently. That being said (as I do have the same thought now and again with things that could have been different), I feel better for this and more of a compassionate person which may not have happened without this. Trying to find a positive anyway! :)