Newbie - Just need to talk

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
I just need to vent frustrations out and sure you guys have felt this way at some stage.
I gave up work to look after mum over a year ago and all was going well (sort of) hard to adjust not going to the office but I have.

The thing is that over the last 3/4 months have been feeling that I have lost me and I am feeling resentful almost angry. Not that I vent my feelings to mum I keep them bottled up but can feel it bubbling to the surface and afraid am going to say something that will hurt her. My sister keeps telling me and mum that I should be taking her there and everywhere now that I am not working and mum is agreeing making me feel as if I am selfish by not doing this.

I am sure my sister thinks that I sit on my arse all day and do nothing. She does not see the that I not only tend to mums needs but also all the house hold chores the arguments with doctors / social services / the repairs and upgrades I have managed to get from council grants. She does not see that I am not sleeping well, that I have started to look and feel dowdy because I am so tired and stressed. She does not see that I need time out for me! She has accused me of being a drama queen! Her common expression at the moment is "Well I am at work all day and need time to myself" Well what about me! It is not easy to care for mum especially when she is cantankerous and has sulky moods.

The only time I have time for myself is when I go do weekly shop and then I feel guilty because I dont always take her with me. When I do the shopping just as I am leaving it's " Can you get....?" "Sorry mum they don't sell that in Asda"....then I get sulky face as if I am being unhelpful so end up running around places to find what ever it is she asked for...and more often than that it's something trivial or can you get my pension? eventho I am nowhere near the post office and I got it for her last week... So I am running around for her so not really time for me.

At the moment I have had another sleepless night and body shaking want to cry scream run away but I can't .... You may think I am being a selfish B**** writing this post but I just needed to let off steam as I have nowhere or no one to turn to. So apologies for doing it here...
Hi Pura,
I don't think your being selfish at all but I do think you need at least a day to yourself each week if not more. Caring is hard work and it's all too easy to become an extension of the person we are looking after rather than an individual in our own right. Are there any respite care clubs on during the day your mum could attend? Maybe start with one day a week and then up it to two later?
If she does go then don't do all those little jobs, do something for you. Maybe coffee with a friend or a mooch around all those shops you used to have time to visit or if you have a hobby, have a sewing day, or crafting day.
Social Services should have a list of suitable clubs and maybe other services that could be of help including respite care so you can have a well deserved break.
Could your sister have her for an overnight visit on a weekend or at Easter so you can relax in your own home for a while and enjoy your own company?
Hope this helps but vent away when necessary, we've been there and done that and will always try to help.
Take care
Tracy
Hi Pura,
Me too! I'm better off than you in some ways. My 99yr old Mum lives 5 mins drive away from me as I knew from the start, when she moved to live near me 9 years ago that it would never work if we lived together, both from the accommodation point of view and the fact that I'd never be able to stand it. I have the advantage of somewhere to go when I can get away, but the disadvantage of never knowing when I'll be called out and worrying about how she is in the night for example.
The first 5 or 6 years weren't too bad and I got carers in pretty quickly too, at that stage do a bit of 'domestic' and make the odd meal. I also got a cleaner. However the last 4 years have become increasingly difficult and have taken over more and more of my life. Mum is now chair or bed bound, needs to be hoisted and washed/dressed etc and although the amount of care time has increased a lot and the cleaner is a treasure, I still spend 5 to 8 hours a day actually with her and uncounted time doing all the things you mentioned and her washing and ironing when I'm not there. I haven't got any siblings, so no possibility of help there and it's about time your sister woke up to the realities of your life. I'd take off for a week and tell her to take over!
I'm lucky in that my Mum isn't too verbally demanding. I don't have the 'fetch this, buy that' scenario, but I do still do the fetching and carrying nevertheless.
People who are not caring don't realise the sheer exhaustion, frustration and boredom of constantly dancing attendance around an elderly person, however much you love them and want to support their last years. When you can never have a lie in, never go out on impulse, never be far away 'in case' and the constant drudge of the daily routine, putting everything exactly where needed, putting the same 'old' programmes on TV, fighting the 'I'm not really hungry' when you are trying to get a meal ready and so on and on and on. You know what I mean.
Yes I get upset and angry. I'm on a constant emotional see-saw between, 'poor old lady, she needs my help, I can't let her be lonely, I must look after her health,' to 'what about me? I've lost all these years when I should have been enjoying my retirement, taking holidays, exploring the Yorkshire Dales, enjoying my hobbies,how dare she steal my life from me?'
I suggest that you do get some help in if you haven't already. Call SS and ask for a needs assessment for Mum and you. At the very least you have to organise some 'me' time. Your health is very important too.
Elaine
Thanks Tracey and Elaine - Makes me feel better knowing that others have or are going through this and I am not alone in this.

As for my mum going to a center for the day that's a no/no she wont go - she is quite a shy person to some extent and this is something she would hate same thing if I arranged for a "stranger" to pop in even if just for a brief visit. Our Social Worker came several months ago to talk about and she refused. She would want me there so that is defeating the object for both suggestions. Albeit he later spoke to me at length about what I wanted all I got were leaflets to read but had no follow up.

My sisters house is not disable friendly so that is also out of the equation. Going away ? That would be great but do not relish thought of going away by myself - it has always been Mum my sister and I

You made me smile with your "Old TV Programmes" Elaine have you got a camera link or something? If I have to watch/listen another old rerun of Kung Fu any film on TCM or True Movies or similar will toss TV out the front door :lol:

Getting back to sewing is great idea as converted back bedroom into sewing room for myself just have not had the time and when I do I am too knackered.

I don't know of any coffee mornings or respite in my area that I could go to just to meet like minded people so at the moment it feels I'm stuck.

I think the worse things is that try as I might my mum makes me feel useless. .... Always have you done this? have you done that? What if...? I know she doesnt mean it - she's a worrier always thinking the negative but doesnt realise that I have everything under control I know what I am doing. I think that is what makes me feel so down. The lack of confidence she has in me. As I said dont think she is doing it maliciously but it hurts..

I think just letting off steam on here will have to do for now ..at least..