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anyone else in a similar position? - Carers UK Forum

anyone else in a similar position?

Tell us a bit about yourself here.

I'm Lucy, 27 and have been caring for my mum since i was around 8 years old with no other family to help out. She has multiple conditions, including auto immune diseases, neurology issues and chronic pain problems. Recently she has just been diagnosed with diabetes as well which is not helping as its making her feel even make awful than she does until we find some medication that kicks in.
I guess what im really struggling with is the experiences I have had of friends and/or romantic relationships just fading away with people seeming to 'drop me' due to my caring responsibilities.. its something I have managed until recently when one such person told me that they associate me with let downs and disappointments (due to cancelling a couple of occasions when my mum was extremely ill, including having two strokes in four days and being in and out of hospital as an in patient). I just wondered if anyone has any advice on how to not let this make me feel such a failure or how to not let it upset me as much as it currently does. Even just to know I'm not alone would be welcome at the moment!

Lucy :)
Hello Lucy
I might be only one up still, so a big welcome until others stir tomorrow.

Any 'potential love' or 'friend' who does not understand and support you in your caring duties is not worth spending time on. Simples.

You are not a failure, you were kicked when you are down so it hurts more than it warrants. Simples.

Ok, with caring responsibilities, it may take more time and some skilled support in place for Mum to free you up a little more, to find the right person, but find him you will.

I need to go to bed now, but hope this helps a little
You are Definately not alone, I was in a similar position I looked after dad since I was a teen , I've had two failed marriages and friends have come and gone , caring for dad played a significant part of that. My true friends understood , the rest who didn't , well it was their loss. Is the way I looked at it. I was never offered any help with dad and I had to fight, I rang social services every day for 3 months until someone came to visit but that was many moons ago, if I could offer any advice to you, it is this no matter how much you put another before yourself, you don't want help whether it be guilt, or through choice I highly recommend you take what is offered. I did my best for my dad up until I lost him in July , I'm extremely proud of the way I looked after him, and you should be too but in hindsight , if I had to do it again I would of made time for me more, not deferred degree and accepted any offers of help, and remember those people who arnt there for you or able to understand are not worth your time. Xx
Mrs Average and Michelle, thank you both for your replies, as silly as it sounds, just some reassurance that someone else can relate is really reassuring. I have a great relationship with my mum, shes been a single parent for the majority of my life so we are extremely close, and I look after her because I want to, she's always my first priority.

Michelle - I also deferred going to university for a long time and had to fight hard to get there. It was the first time really I had told anybody about my caring responsibilities and the response/help was 'suggesting' I abandon my course and leave! :unsure: :angry: I didn't, and somehow managed to get a good masters degree in a hard science subject, from which I graduated last summer. Also, I'm sure your dad was extremely proud of you and that is the one thing that I hope to be able to give my mum, to make her life a little nicer, a little easier.

I think I know deep down that those that choose to leave for these reasons are not worth being around, although it doesn't seem to prevent it hurting any less. Mrs A, you hit the nail on the head with describing it as being kicked when you are down.
Thank you both for taking the time to reply, it's provided me with a bit of comfort knowing there ARE other people out there that know what it is like, and that I'm not completely losing it!! Xxx
I was not a carer as a child/teen, but from h early twenties to now - so about 7 years. I can only imagine what it must be like when younger than that - I found it hard enough as a 'younger carer' and I was a grown adult!

I know what you mean about friends. They can be really supportive at first, then seem to 'lose interest' after a while because you can't keep up with them as much as you'd like. I have very few friends right now and live in a new city. But there are a few people who still care. I agree you shouldn't waste your energy when people aren't being supportive and true friends who understand!

Well done on the degree! Impressive! I did a master's degree that I completed last year - it was tough with my caring responsibilities and my own health as a problem - took me 4 years rather than 2! I can relate to how tough it can be!