They Always Say Take Care Of Your Self

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by bel, Jun 30, 2006.

  1. bel

    bel Registered User

    Apr 26, 2006
    I wondered if any one else felt the same i have had it said lots of times you must take care of yourself as well i know they are right and mean well but how
    when you see the one you love changing before your eyes and you are trying so hard to make them feel as normal as possible and you are taking over all the responsability of things you would of shared before

    Love BEL X
  2. Áine

    Áine Registered User

    yes, I've heard that lots of times, and I'm afraid I've said it lots of times. But when exactly are we supposed to find time to do that????? :confused:

    Somewhere between commuting 50 miles to full time job, visiting dad the other side of the city and trying to make his day to day life oK, and trying to clear and sell his house so we can pay for the nursing home fees. :(

    Last couple of days I've not even found time to select a pair of matching socks to wear, never mind take care of myself. Maybe if I were to stay up extra late :D
  3. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    Taking care of yourself.

    Dear Bel,
    Last year, I really felt that by the time I'd finished running around after Mum and working, I had no time for myself. I noticed an Adult Education class advertised in the local paper, for the Summer term, which was just ten weeks. I'd always wanted to have a go at Creative Writing so I signed up. At that time, Mum would have been at a Day Centre, so I didn't need to feel guilty about not seeing her.
    I enjoyed the class, met people and made new friends and I've continued with the classes. There are usually a variety of classes available locally and some last for less than ten weeks, so it is not too much of a commitment. I needed to use a computer to write up stories and homework, so it made me more confident in using IT and I think it's been helpful in my work too.
    I also go to a privately run Yoga Class which I find helpful. I have to pay for 4 weeks at a time, which is a powerful incentive to attend. Sport and physical exercise can help to relieve stress as well as being good fun. Community groups or Churches might also run social activities and around here there are a lot of Art Groups, which seem to be held in people's homes.
  4. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    They say do this do that, oh no you're doing too much for her, then in the end accused me of neglect.

    The only rule seems to be that whatever you do is wrong.

  5. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    Love what Kayla said keep meaning to do that.

    I want to do maths class and English Maths because I can to work for on line gaming in the future when mum go in a home as it pays good money in England & Gibraltar and am not sure to move to Gibraltar when mum passes away ,but as lest I would have some qualification behind me. English to improve my grammar spelling

    yes caring can consume your mind that you forget about self until it come out in an illness in you, with me it was my sciatica & then when I took a brake away I got a cold sore my body telling me some think and I am not listening ,because I am finding it hard to get that balance . going on holiday getting cold sore is making me realize my mistake in what can happen in not looking after myself , must have been so run down, as I know in the past when I got cold sore on lip its because I am run down .so I think there right in saying to look after yourself when caring for someone, it just has to come from me finding that balance
  6. Rosalind

    Rosalind Registered User

    Jul 2, 2005
    if you take some time off for yourself, it does make you less stressed. I took myself very reluctantly to a gym for women only (no mirrors either) because I was feeling dreadful, fat, flabby, drinking and eating too much etc. It helped my sleeping - no more hours awake worrying from 4 a.m - and I am sure I am better able to cope with all the frustrations of living with dementia because of it. I have lost some weight, blood pressure down, and have reacquainted myself with my ribcage.

    Have to say I don't feel in the least bit guilty for doing it. The person with dementia is by definition not having the sort of life he/she would have had without it, but what on earth is the point in the carer being more miserable than he or she has to? If we beat ourselves up so much we feel ghastly what possible help is that?

    At a recent carers' meeting I attended there was one woman who had for once left her obviously extremely difficult husband who apparently refused to have any other help or even other people in the house. She was clearly as close to breaking point as it is possible to be - like the taughtest of wires. Since then I understand she broke down completely and he had to be sectioned. If she had been more 'selfish' and insisted he put up with some of the intrusion he said he did not want, would this have happened? She is, I understand, now trying to get him out of hospital and home again, but if that is on the same basis the entire thing will happen all over again, I expect
  7. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    Take care!

    Dear Lila13,
    From what you have told me, I think you did everything you could for your mother, but she was ill. If you have done what you felt was right at the time, then it doesn't matter what other people say. They have not been in the same situation as you.
    Now my Mum is in a NH, I feel can stand back a little from the day to day caring and just enjoy Mum for herself. I've seen a different side to her personality, which it may have been better not to have seen. However she is ill and I must try and make the best of things. I can't change her state of health whatever I do.
    The only way I can cope is by dividing my life into little compartments and by trying to deal with one thing at a time.
    I think we have to try and have confidence in ourselves and do the best we can.
  8. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    Glad to hear anout your weight lost I lost a stone going swimming doing a few other excerise , only think since going on hoilday comeing back can not get back in to it :eek: :) .
  9. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    near London
    Hi Lila13
    no, the only rule is - you do all you can do, and what you feel is right to do. Can't do more than that.

    No-one else who has not done that for your mother has any right to criticise.
  10. Kriss

    Kriss Registered User

    May 20, 2004
    Had a giggle at that - during the most stressful period when Aunty was descending rapidly down the slippery slope of AD, I managed to go into work on not just once, but on 3 seperate occasions wearing odd coloured shoes!!!

    In my defence they were identical in style and my bedroom light was not the brightest!
  11. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    If my Mother continues the way she has in last few days she will be very lucky if anyone at bothers with her at all ..........maybe thats the answer when everyone ignores her maybe she will either sink or swim
  12. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Helena,
    What has your mum done to upset you? Maybe we can help.
  13. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Just the usual tirades of abuse and talking rubbish and simply will not let up even when she knows you have to go out cant get any sense out of her

    She simply cannot go on like this and live alone .....if she wants to stay in her own home and refuses to have outside help ..... she will have to co operate ......if she doesent it will be the neighbours complaining bitterly too

    In fact i dare not think what she does or says since we do not live near her

    My sister and i have enough on our plates without all this nonsense

    I am sorry but its time the medical world faced up to the real problems of the demented elderly and made proper provision

    As my Physiotherapist said .....she has far too many OAPs killing themselves in struggle of having to cope with obstinate geriatric parents with dementia
  14. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    Take care

    Dear Helena,
    When my Mum was living by herself at home, she was the sweetest possible, little old lady to her neighbours and friends. She had a cleaning lady in once a week to hoover round, but she wouldn't let her get on with the work, because she liked her to sit outside on the swingseat and have a chat. I f I went round later on, she'd be upset about some little thing or need a job doing which could easily have been done by the cleaner.
    She had a gardener, but would never think to ask him to spray the roses or prune an overhanging bush. I'd get that job, when I was in a hurry to get home to be ready for work. I kept asking her to jot down jobs, so the next person in the house could see to it eg. replacing a lightbulb only takes a minute if you're there, but half an hour if you need to drive over especially.
    I don't think she liked asking people for help, even when she was paying them, but she didn't mind asking me, because I was her daughter. She wouldn't grumble or behave in a difficult way to other people, but she could be very awkward towards me.
    It is very annoying when elderly relatives can't organise themselves to ask for help at an appropriate time. However, they can't help being old and mentally impaired. Looking back now, it would be nice to walk Mum round the supermarket, or have her over for lunch, or even help her in the garden. Now Mum is in the NH, I don't have the hassle of doing jobs for her but I don't have the Mum I used to have, who used to come out with me to the shops or social gatherings.
    This morning Mum said that she wished she could finish now, meaning that life didn't have much to offer her. That made me feel more sad than when she was crying continually for months.
  15. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Kayla,
    Can you take your mum out at all from the Nursing Home, just to do those ordinary things? I know how much better it makes things feel. We are fortunate, the NH is in the village where mum and dad live, so we can occasionally take mum home for a couple of hours, or walk her in the wheelchair to the local shops.
    Maybe the heat is making your mum feel a bit weary. Take care.
    Love, Helen
  16. DickG

    DickG Registered User

    Feb 26, 2006
    How sad that this thread is riven with guilt which I am sure is not deserved. The hardest part of careing is looking after ourselves for selflessness is what is expected of us. On Tuesday I will be starting my campaign to get Mary to accept day care once a week - this is essential for me and desireable for Mary and I accept that there will be tears, tantrums and accusations but it must be done and I hope that I have the fortitude to see it through.

    Only those of us emotionally involved in careing know what it is all about so don't listen to those on the outside looking in they don't know the half of it.

  17. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Best of luck Dick.
    Love Helen.
  18. connie

    connie Registered User

    Mar 7, 2004
    Dick, fingers crossed for you on Tuesday.

    I well remember Lionel's first day at a day centre.......I do not remember who was more anxious, him or 2 years on, today was his first Saturday at the centre (now 4 days a week). Not without trauma, heartache, anxiety, BUT.......without our days apart I know I could not cope.

    When they ring me from the centre to say....."we are having difficulity getting Lionel on the transport,..or, we are having trouble moving him from the lounge to the dining room.......I think, HOW DO THEY EXPECT ME TO COPE ON MY OWN AT HOME.

    As you know, we all do, but take help where it is offered. Best of luck for Tuesday.
  19. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    Unfortunately those on the outside looking in are often the paid workers, doctors, nurses, social workers etc. Those who say she doesn't need full-time care, she is capable of making her own decisions, but then blame the family when anything goes wrong.


  20. Michael E

    Michael E Registered User

    Apr 14, 2005
    Ronda Spain
    Helena hi,

    Not sure if you want advice or sympathy? I will start with the latter - Its a bitch! Even people who have been quite nice in their pre AD live can become occasional monsters, demanding and totally inconsiderate... I don't think for a lot of it they can help it - they have dementia - are a bit nuts - and trying to reason or look after them can test the patience of a saint and I am pretty certain neither you nor I are 'saints'... It is horrid and I am really sorry for you .... and me... and the others who have 'chosen' to try to take care of their partners/relatives...

    On a more practical note, I could with considerable trouble, get mine into a shower - sometimes - I could spend 25/7 with her but the the concept of 'outside help' came my way... Now I have to pay for it but - it really makes a difference.. I let 'others' take some of the strain..

    I think you have to understand, with dealing with your mum, that she is never ever ever going to compromise or do it your way...

    Dementia seems to make all that sort of civilised behaviour impossible... So get out ... get out of as much of it as you can and still be able to live with yourself... Get the system involved - get somebody in dependant who earns their living by doing it and are not emotionally involved to give your mum the 'aid' and assistance she needs. You need to involve the Doctor and the SS services and let them take over.. Will probably cost every penny your mum has and then the state will 'look after her' for the rest of her life and that's it... You can then spend some time building bridges with her if that's what you want -- or not.

    Well that's what I think....


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