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Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 12/12/08
Christmas is coming and I am not looking forward to it.  I love my family but I am so drained and tired from caring for my sick mother that I just want to get away by myself.  I have hinted at it and have asked that someone take care of mother for a couple of days, but they will have none of it, saying that she will not be happy if I go away at Christmas.  I am not convinced that this is the real reason.  I just  want to go somewhere to rejuvenate myself for the year ahead.

How do I get around this??

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Name: Theresa
Location: Lakewood, Ohio
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 06:16 AM


Instead of hinting, you will have to come out and tell them that you are going and that this will be the schedule they need to follow. And make out a detailed schedule involving your siblings. Prepare food and put it in the freezer for them to heat up for your mom. You may have to hire a nurse to come at night to stay with her, but it will be well worth it for you to get the rest you need. If you are down and out you won't be any good to anyone including yourself.

Name: M.E.C.
Location: NJ
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 07:08 AM


I totally understand how you feel. I too, cared for my mom for 5-1/2 years in my home. I made this her home too. There were a lot of happy times, as well as stressful ones. For 5-1/2 months, I cared for her 24/7, due to 2 falls & a cancerous growth on her forehead. It was really stressful for me & I had support, though not enough & wanted to go for just one overnight anywhere. I suggested to her that I put her in a respite situation for just one night. She looked at me, oh so sadly, and said "why do you want to get rid of me?" That completely solved my going away problem. I just couldn't do it and I'm so glad I stayed with her, because she passed away just two short months after that. This is my first Christmas without seeing her lovely face, cancer & all, & I miss her terribly. Even though you're completely drained, which I was, you might want to re-think going away, at least through the holidays. Maybe one day in January, you might want to do something "just for yourself". Now, I'm back to a caregiving role, since I have to "watch" my husband 24/7. This latest, just 4 months after my mom's passing. I guess I was meant to be a caregiver. Good luck & get some rest.

Location: Ohio
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 08:40 AM


**Does your Mother have enough income that you could use her Money to hire help to come in..? **Her Doctor could write out the prescription for her to have a HOME HEALTH AIDE COME IN SEVERAL TIMES A WEEK TO DO PERSONAL CARE LIKE HER BATHING... **TELL THE OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS THAT YOU ARE GOING TO LOOK INTO AN AGENCY TO HAVE CAREGIVERS COME IN TO TAKE CARE OF MOM OVER THE HOLIDAY TIME AND THAT THEY ARE ALL GOING TO PITCH IN WITH THE COST.. SEE HOW FAST THEY MOVE THEN.... **ANOTHER SOLUTION WOULD BE TO PUT MOM IN A NURSING HOME FOR RESPITE CARE FOR 2 WEEKS. I THINK THAT HER DOCTOR WOULD BE ABLE TO HELP ARRANGE THIS TOO. **You can't do a good job of caring for your mother if you are feeling drained and are with her 24/7. Tell your other family members that its their turn to help out, its either a couple days at a time, 1 day a week for each of them, a week at a time or else you will need to look into the above suggestions. ** Could you get some ladies from Church to come in for a couple hours each day to let you have a break..?? **High school girl..(they would love to earn some $$) ** could you hire a nurse's aide to come in for a couple hours several times a week... so you could get out for a movie or dinner with friends... You didn't mention how ill your Mother is or her age...but I am sure you could get help from your doctor for the above. And Please don't feel guilty if you need to use the Nursing Home Respite or other caregivers...from an agency. God Bless You for all your Hard work whether its physical or mental.... some people just don't understand the stress that is put on YOU if you are the only one doing the care 24/7 ---365days. Hope the above suggestions help... THERE ARE ALSO PRIVATE CAREGIVERS THAT YOU COULD HIRE TO COME IN TO HELP EVEN WHILE YOU ARE THERE IN THE HOUSE...they could do the cleaning, some of the cooking, laundry etc... That way you could be there but not actually doing the work...

Name: Roxanna
Location: Champaign, IL
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 08:50 AM


Illinois has a great program Caregiver Support Services. Through the caregiver program Respite care is available so you can recharge your batteries. Call your Area Agency on Aging to find this service in your area. Take care of yourself.

Name: Donna
Location: Chico CA
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 09:17 AM


If you have come to the point of expressing this need and desire, then I would encourage you to follow through with this trip or time at home alone. If family members won't take on Mom, tell them you're arranging for a brief out-of-home stay for her in a respite situation if they won't receive her into their home. You have no need to absorb the guilt they're trying to send your way. Mom will get over her disappointment if you're not there, and she'll have a better you to care for her once you have had a break. Go for it.

Location: PAHRUMP, NV
Date: 12/12/2008
Time: 07:23 PM




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