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Is it acceptable for social worker to say this?

Hellyg

Registered User
Nov 18, 2014
82
Midlands
Is it acceptable for a social worker to say to me that I have to care for my husband as we are married until death us do part, when I said they had a duty of care and I was at the end of my tether and could not do it anymore, as he was refusing to go to bed and I need to sleep as I work full time, she said that “he is your husband, until death you do part” we not have a duty of care, this is medical phone 111.

This has tipped me over the edge, as adult services have given no support and seem to expect that I sacrifice my health to care for him. To be fair I didn’t really mean that I was refusing to care (not right now anyway) but we could be close to it if this carries on. The message I am getting loud and clear is that I don’t matter and I am dispensable, they will just push me until I keel over.
 

Banabarama

Registered User
Dec 28, 2018
52
Sussex
It’s not really acceptable is it, but I think that’s the way it is. You pay 60-70,000 a year for someone to look after your spouse or you do it yourself. And even that assumes co-operation. It’s terrifying. I’m in the same position as you - at the end of my rope - this weekend. I also work and it’s hard with the stress of this and the lack of sleep and the fear of what might happen next. There are some amazing people on here doing amazing things but everyone is different I guess - careers and patients. I think I would feel better with just one word of thanks, but I dont think that will ever happen. We plod on as what else can we do. Wishing you a good nights sleep tonight.
 

Normaleila

Registered User
Jun 4, 2016
731
Hi Hellyg
That's disgraceful - no wonder you're upset. The social worker is 100% wrong. Your husband, as a vulnerable adult, is their responsibility not yours. It's very unprofessional - I wonder whether the SW is someone with strong religious views - and this must not happen to anyone else.
Others on the forum have previously advised that someone in your position should tell SS that you're going away for health reasons and they must take over. You could also ask to speak to a SS manager to make a formal complaint.
I think you've been very brave to clearly state that you can't and won't cope any longer. I wish you a better 2019.
 

Normaleila

Registered User
Jun 4, 2016
731
It’s not really acceptable is it, but I think that’s the way it is. You pay 60-70,000 a year for someone to look after your spouse or you do it yourself. And even that assumes co-operation. It’s terrifying. I’m in the same position as you - at the end of my rope - this weekend. I also work and it’s hard with the stress of this and the lack of sleep and the fear of what might happen next. There are some amazing people on here doing amazing things but everyone is different I guess - careers and patients. I think I would feel better with just one word of thanks, but I dont think that will ever happen. We plod on as what else can we do. Wishing you a good nights sleep tonight.
 

Normaleila

Registered User
Jun 4, 2016
731
I don't agree that this is the way it is - no one should have their marriage vows thrown in their face in this way. It is not professional for a start. A PWD deserves a needs assessment and appropriate care. If care costs £60k so be it but that will be paid by the PWD not the spouse.
 

Banabarama

Registered User
Dec 28, 2018
52
Sussex
Apologies for my negative comments. I guess it will vary from area to area. Do hope you can follow up with someone more sympathetic than the uncaring social worker you have been speaking to.
 

maryjoan

Registered User
Mar 25, 2017
1,401
South of the Border
I was told that the only way out for me is for one of us to die or for me to pack my bags and walk away - and that was by the Doctor!! My OH and I are not even married !
 

B72

Registered User
Jul 21, 2018
132
There are a few issues here. Would the SW say that to a husband? The State does try to lean on family members to take over the complete Caring role - but the State does have a responsibility to a vulnerable adult. Also, TIL death do us part, is part of the Christian Wedding Service. Not everyone is Christian. Other religions say different things. So, what the SW said is offensive on many counts. Ethically, factually, culturally, and with no respect for people of different cultures or who do not belong to any religion. They should definitely be reported.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
70,695
Kent
she said that “he is your husband, until death you do part” we not have a duty of care, this is medical phone 111.
I would send a letter of complaint to Adult Social Services and name the Social Worker who said that to you.
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,034
Scotland
In this journey a lot of people will say a lot of things about what should happen next and you just have to dismiss anything you dont agree with. A very nice lady who lives near me always enquires after my husband praising my care and invariably commenting on living up to my marital vows. She looked after her husband with cancer for three years. I am already into the seventh year of dementia caring as well as years of upsetting occasions before that.

People seemingly don't notice the disparity between an illness which carries the patient off and leaves you the possibility of a life of your own and a lengthy period of what feels like imprisonment with someone who has become a stranger. In my case my husband is a nice person still loved by our children and that helps but I am not a nurse, carer, prison warder by choice and no amount of praise can make that feel right.

I would definitely report the social worker who has overstepped her position.
 

PalSal

Registered User
Dec 4, 2011
804
Pratteln Switzerland
In this journey a lot of people will say a lot of things about what should happen next and you just have to dismiss anything you dont agree with. A very nice lady who lives near me always enquires after my husband praising my care and invariably commenting on living up to my marital vows. She looked after her husband with cancer for three years. I am already into the seventh year of dementia caring as well as years of upsetting occasions before that.

People seemingly don't notice the disparity between an illness which carries the patient off and leaves you the possibility of a life of your own and a lengthy period of what feels like imprisonment with someone who has become a stranger. In my case my husband is a nice person still loved by our children and that helps but I am not a nurse, carer, prison warder by choice and no amount of praise can make that feel right.

I would definitely report the social worker who has overstepped her position.
@marionq I am always glad to read your posts and your measured and considered responses.
I have decided, like yourself to take care, of my husband since 2002 and he was 49 and I was 48. I was still working 100% until I was 60 when I got an early retirement and a month later my leukemia. My choice was based on many factors, his generally gentle and kind persona , my attitude, financial limitations and the opinion and desires of my children. It has been the right decision for us, but one that is taken one day at a time. I have no expectations regarding the future and regarding the length of my role as primary carer. But I do not sit in any judgement of those who want to make other choices, how and when to proceed is a personal and family decision.

Unfortunately, I suspect that the coffers of any federal state whether Britain, or another country to deal with care as people live longer and longer is going to be one of the greatest challenges of the next decades. There is the question of who is ultimately reasonable for care? That too depends on culture, background and the country in which one lives.

I think the SW was out of line to say this, it is only her opinion and quite hurtful.
but rather than her losing her job, perhaps she requires more education to give her better insight into the lives of carers….
Or perhaps she is beyond reasonable and measured thinking.
 

love.dad.but..

Registered User
Jan 16, 2014
4,482
Kent
Disgraceful comment. No one whether married or not has to care for another for whatever their reason may be. I would send a letter of complaint to the Director of Adult Social Services reporting this social worker by name, demanding another SW and a further professional assessment of his needs and carer assessment of yours.
 

Hellyg

Registered User
Nov 18, 2014
82
Midlands
Thanks for all the responses, to be fair I did not mean it when I said I was refusing to care anymore, I was just desperate and trying to get them to see that I needed support. Him getting back up and thinking it was the next day was the final straw as I am only 42 so have the keep working (my husband has FTD so although older than me is relatively young to have dementia) and to work I need my sleep, I am already exhausted trying to do everything, we are now 4 years since diagnosis and I have already been through an aggressive stage and various other issues with him, he has no other relatives in this country to help me or give me a break.

The SW’s comments tipped me over the edge as it showed no sympathy or support, for the health and position of me as a carer. I am trying my best and she was just rude and uncaring. I will definitely put a complaint in, as I dread to think what else she is saying to others in my position.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
1,789
Regardless of what you did or didn't say or mean the social worker has a responsibility to act professionally and not voice their own religious/cultural/personal opinions. Make sure that you send the complaint via email as from experience authorities tend to take a 'ignore it and hope that it goes away' approach to complaints so it helps to have an audit trail.
 

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
6,574
Bristol
Social Services should be there to help when we get to that stage of just needing a bit of help or a few days respite to keep going @Hellyg . I hope you can get the support you need even if you have to fight for it.
 

Normaleila

Registered User
Jun 4, 2016
731
Reminds me of when my Catholic grandmother was dying of cancer in 1966. One of the nurses who attended daily to give her morphine told her that as a woman of faith she shouldn't need pain relief.
 

kindred

Registered User
Apr 8, 2018
2,366
It’s not really acceptable is it, but I think that’s the way it is. You pay 60-70,000 a year for someone to look after your spouse or you do it yourself. And even that assumes co-operation. It’s terrifying. I’m in the same position as you - at the end of my rope - this weekend. I also work and it’s hard with the stress of this and the lack of sleep and the fear of what might happen next. There are some amazing people on here doing amazing things but everyone is different I guess - careers and patients. I think I would feel better with just one word of thanks, but I dont think that will ever happen. We plod on as what else can we do. Wishing you a good nights sleep tonight.
Absolutely and sometimes it is IMPOSSIBLE to go on caring. My life was in danger and I was broken. No, she should not have said this, it is unprofessional and cruel. Up to you of course if you want to complain. Strangely, in the end it was a social worker who saved my life and sorted everything out (still have to pay of course ...). It seems they are getting even more desperate in their attempts to force us to do the caring at home, no matter what the cost to us.
I am so sorry. Kindred.
 

Ruth1974

Registered User
Dec 26, 2018
77
Is it acceptable for a social worker to say to me that I have to care for my husband as we are married until death us do part, when I said they had a duty of care and I was at the end of my tether and could not do it anymore, as he was refusing to go to bed and I need to sleep as I work full time, she said that “he is your husband, until death you do part” we not have a duty of care, this is medical phone 111.

This has tipped me over the edge, as adult services have given no support and seem to expect that I sacrifice my health to care for him. To be fair I didn’t really mean that I was refusing to care (not right now anyway) but we could be close to it if this carries on. The message I am getting loud and clear is that I don’t matter and I am dispensable, they will just push me until I keel over.
 

Ruth1974

Registered User
Dec 26, 2018
77
No.
Make a formal complaint and ask for a meeting. You want a new allocated social worker and an assessment. Be firm.
 
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