Hi! I've read several messages on the subject of caregiving.
My situation may be unique. I am at a total burn out......crash landing....or what ever you call it.
My mom has been handicapped since before I was born. It is "normal" to see her in her wheelchair. I never thought anything about it. When my dad died when I was 13, I was faced with worrying about my future, my mom etc..
I am now 37 and have never left my mom, although many people have told me to put her in some home ever since I turned 18 years old. I never thought of ever putting her in any "home". I have been her "helper" since the age of 13. I have given up my life to see that she is cared for. She was able to go to work and now is retired.
Her disability is Polio.And now she is dealing with Post-Polio syndrome. It kills me to see her in pain but she will not take "pain pills".She is worried of being hooked on meds.
Anytime I'm greeted by friends or neighbors, I'm asked " How's your mom?" ....No one ever asks ME how I am,even my family. When they do ask how I am, it's because they are worried that someone else will have to look out for my mom. I was even told by several family members that I was born to care for my mom.....that I was "sent" from God to see that my mom is ok.
That in itself drives me crazy.....that all I am is a caregiver.
People don't see me.....they see my mom's little "helper".
As I watch my mom age,I'm feeling that no matter what I do, I can't help her. It is probably the worst feeling to have.
I'm torn between feeling guilty about not having time for myself and not giving enough time to my aging mother.What can you do?
Is anyone facing a similar problem?