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Caring vs carer

Tiller Girl

Registered User
May 14, 2012
I was talking to a friend the other day who's father is 93 and has become very demanding over the past few months. He doesn't have any form of dementia , he's just elderly.

She commented that while she was caring , she wasn't a carer and she's finding it difficult to cope with him.

Her comments really got me thinking. I wondered how many of us felt the same way?


Registered User
Jun 24, 2013
People are always asking me if I'm my MIL's carer, but I'm always very clear that I'm her daughter in law. I'll move heaven and earth to help her keep in together for as long as I can, but once she needs actual "care" that'll be somebody else's job.

mrs mcgonnagal

Registered User
May 9, 2015
I've been looking after my mother with mixed dementia and no, it hasn't come naturally. It's very difficult and has changed the relationship. That is really difficult to come to terms with.


Registered User
Aug 1, 2014
Victoria, Australia
Whilst I am sure that there are people out there who think of me as being a carer, I refuse to allow that title to define me, to say that it's the sum of my life.

Grandma Joan

Registered User
Mar 29, 2013

I look after my MIL, 87 - mixed Dementia 3+ years and

my own mother,91, very independent (no dementia) but losing her sight

as yet neither of them need help with personal care, that's when I will need someone else to help.


Registered User
May 9, 2012
south-east London
This brings to mind an awkward situation last Christmas when I accompanied my husband to his annual works reunion for retired employees.

It is common practice to request a ticket for a 'carer' to accompany the former employee where necessary, and so we requested a ticket for me to accompany my husband - providing my name as the designated carer.

When we got there, my husband was given a label with his name on ( as were all the former employees) and I was given a label to wear which simply stated "N's carer" - no name and nothing to suggest I was anything other than a carer.

It's probably silly I know, but it made me feel like a non-person. It was particularly annoying because I knew many of the attendees socially over the years and we were on first name terms and they were well aware I was N's wife.

I do understand the need to say on my label that I was with N in a caring capacity (I suppose they wouldn't have been able to accommodate everyone who just wanted to have a guest with them, so needed to make it clear in what role I was there) - but it would have been nice to at least be given a name!

I had a word with one of the organisers (a friend of ours) and said how it made me feel. I suggested having wording like "Lynne, N's wife/carer" on my label instead and she made note of it. I suppose I'll find out this year if they have taken any of my comments on board!
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Registered User
Feb 3, 2015
I was taken aback when the lovely lady at the Alzheimer's association referred to me as my mil carer.
I work full time and have a 5 yr old so not sure I am her carer. I pop in almost everyday to make sure she takes her meds and sometimes make a meal.
Other than that I don't do much else.

When she gets too bad she will have to be looked after by someone else I'm afraid.
I care but I'm not a carer

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