Welcome to Let's Talk About It. In this
special section we will feature the question/topic of the month and provide an opportunity
for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible
solutions to concerns. If you wish to participate, just
follow the link provided at the end of the question/topic and add
your comments and thoughts.
If you are unable to attend a support group in
person, do you have someone you can call who
understands your situation?
Name: Robert M.
Location: Marion, Ohio
Time: 08:17 AM
I and my two siblings care for my father who has advanced Alzheimer's Disease. He has to have help with nearly every function. We have cared for him for many years. (He is 90) But, we have lost contact with nearly everyone we used to know. Not even other family or church members make an effort to visit more than once or twice a year if at all.
We have helpers coming and going often. But, they have little understanding of the extent of our situation and you can't just share private feelings with near strangers. So, it leaves us with no one but each other to talk to and we are all coming unglued from the stress of doing this for so long.
Our situation is about to become a train wreck as one sibling is becoming physically unable to care for father and I will to be expected to carry more load when I am already hurting badly.
I simply can't find anyone to talk to professionally or otherwise to help me decide what to do. My siblings just want to continue living in denial thinking that my father's time is short. But, I think it may not be so.
There seems to be no one at all to help me solve this problem. No one to talk to. No light at the end of the tunnel. I feel so alone.
Time: 09:00 AM
My mother is 77 year old and I am the only caregiver she has. I also have a brother 42 year old who has Downs Syndrome. Just to top it off I am the guardian for my 10 year old granddaughter.
My granddaughter and I just moved in with my mother who's health is slowly deteriorating. She lives in a 2 bedroom duplex with my brother. She could come with me because she is unable to navigate the stairs. I never thought that I would be taking care of both of them (denial). I have no one to talk to regarding this.
Name: Diane Hirakawa
Location: Chula Vista, California
Time: 07:43 AM
My 10 year significant-other has documented PTSD symptoms from the navy seal training of 23 years. He has been on various psycho-pharmacy meds for several years and has had 2 episodes of breakdowns. Last fall, he had another breakdown and moved out to a local base, with his meds again being adjusted. 2 months later moved 600 miles to live with a younger woman (age 37) in the bay area. In May he proposed, and soon after eloped in Canada, and impregnated her. His narcissistic tendencies have devalued me after admiring and loving me for almost a decade. He has no empathy and complete emptiness for my situation. He states that my replacement is ideal, with an ideal town and scenario. Of course, these are all textbook narcissistic tendencies. He is on a new amount of meds that have him feeling everything is perfect in his life. I have such a void in my life, as we were best friends first and foremost. We are athletes and did much training together, along with preparing meals, household chores, talking, traveling, and being the best of friends. It's been a whole year, and I can't adjust my life to be happy without the love and affection he and I shared. I hope he will come to his senses and return to our loving relationship and most of all that this will not happen again. What can I do?
Location: Sarasota, Florida
Time: 08:35 AM
Let me start by saying that I have less to complain about than many people. In many ways I am very fortunate. I am a basically healthy person (so far as I know!), although uninsured. Had to quit the job, move to FL to take care of parents. That's another story.
I'm now an only child (my sister died in '04 from breast cancer), am getting divorced. No other family. I have two parents to take care of, 90 and 91 years old; they have been divorced for many years. At this point they are housed in two different facilities (ALFs) for two different reasons; my father has Alzheimer's, my mother has fibromyalgia and is basically wheelchair bound. What I am struggling with, what we are all struggling with, I guess, is a mountain of paperwork, legal issues (I'm my dad's guardian now), bills, billing issues of all sorts with a panoply of companies, and getting everyone to their doctor appointments, lab work, and occasional ER visits which can take all day. Just transporting Mom is quite an operation in itself, not the least due to the attitude she has. Dad is forgetful and sometimes hardheaded, too, but mostly very pleasant. He still makes puns and jokes, and charms the nurses.
If it were not for school I would have little life of my own, but I signed up for graduate school in -- get this -- a master's in Mental Health Counseling!! I guess I will be my own best customer, huh?! I am hoping for a whole new life someday. My life has not been my own since my sister died.
Location: New York
Time: 06:40 AM
I have been looking for a support group for spouses of those with anxiety disorders. My husband has moments where his anxiety leads to intense anger and irrationality. I can not talk to my friends or family because I fear they would hate him. Does anyone know of a support group for something like this?