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CARENOTES / Past Carenotes / Discussion Forum / Let's Talk


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 - 02/05/09
I have been a caregiver for several years now and I just feel like throwing in the towel.  I keep telling myself to hang in there for my loved one but most days the pressure gets too much for me.  Can anyone tell me how to get over this???

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Name: Marilyn
Location: South Carolina
Date: 02/04/2009
Time: 08:50 PM


I have been a caregiver for 2 loved ones for a total of 32 years. You get through it day by day and LOTS of prayer! If you can, get out and do something fun for yourself or for someone else. That helps too.

Name: Kathy M
Location: Ridley Park PA
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 06:01 AM


I sometimes feel that way, but what helps me to get over these feelings is putting myself in my mom's place and remembering how she feels or looking around and seeing others who are dealing with life challenges that may be even more stressful...and sometimes just a little prayer for patience and strength!

Name: Richard
Location: San Diego
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 06:43 AM


As a 83 year old Largectomee caring for my bride of 56 years with Multi-infarct Dementia, I too have times of wanting to throw in the towel. But then I remember that " You can not become stressed trying to change that for which you have no control". Then I am OK.

Name: Rita
Location: Maryland
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 07:53 AM


I share your feelings as I have been caring for my Mother for over 10 years (11 years in August). She is now in late stages Alzheimer's and needs total care, but I always make time for me. Do what you have to do to get someone to take care of your loved one for a few hours. I exercise everyday to help relieve stress--in the mornings when I first get to work and on Saturday mornings. I also go the the movies every other Saturday and try and spend time with friends at least once a month. But, the most important thing for me is every other day I go bed by 8 p.m. (normally it's 10:30 or 11 p.m.) I don't care what's not done I go to bed. I know it's hard but you have to get away from the situation from time to time and concentrate on you. And not to sound incentive but when I'm away I don't (or try not to) think about my Mother.

Name: Barbara
Location: Cleveland, Oh
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 09:45 AM


First, let me say that I'm sorry to hear you feel this way. It IS hard. It IS discouraging. And, I feel the same way you do. My mother is in better health than most 86 year olds, but she demands instantaneous response to her needs and shows (has?) little appreciation for all we do for her. I struggle daily with my feelings, too. I ask God to bless me with a kinder, more gentle spirit every day.

Name: Ruth Wald
Location: delray beach, FL
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 11:31 AM


I took care of my late dear husband, with help from aides, after two cancer operations, 2 yrs. apart and with dementia towards the end. After his removal of stomach, I took on the role of nurse, nutritionist, getting by on, if I were lucky, 3 yrs. or less sleep (because he always called out to me at night, even with aides there) but I did it all with love for him. Doing cross-stitch designs and crocheting helped me because you have to concentrate on the counting, which relieves the stress.

Name: Praying for Strength
Location: Virginia
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 01:31 PM


I've felt like this myself sometimes. I think any caregiver has/would. What's helped me is being able to be honest about what I am feeling, and what I can reasonably do, and not feeling guilty about it. Once I am honest, it is easier to see the reality of the situation. Then I am able to recognize that I am not a victim, and although it is overwhelming sometimes, I do have choices and some control over how I respond to situations. As I think everyone else has alluded to, the most important choice I can make on this journey is to remember not to neglect myself as I provide care for my loved one. I have learned not only to accept, but also ask for help from others when it becomes too much. Also, I can remember there are some situations over which I have no control. Those things I have to turn over to God and trust Him to work it out.

Name: Lewis
Location: Western Australia
Date: 02/05/2009
Time: 04:01 PM


Just take things one step at a time, take time out for yourself, you must. Forget, they need me, and do not have the time to have a break crap, that sort of being noble is fine at first, but does not work. So you must find the time, even just few hours break will do wonders. Talk to friends, family, medical professionals, Carer Groups and Associations. These can all be of help. My belief is you go down they go down. I have been for caring 25 years, the last 9 full-time, you feel you going bananas, I know. There is always a solution, I believe that firmly, it just a matter of finding

Name: Donna Calm Spirit Spector
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
Date: 02/06/2009
Time: 07:39 AM


First, I hope you don't feel guilty for you thoughts and feeling of throwing in the towel. We all get to that point. The courage to write and ask for advise from others that are in the same or similar situation will help you get through your day. Save the suggestions and comments that everyone has made to you and view them when you need an idea or when you are feeling off your mark. You can now write back to all of us and give us some of your wonderful ideas too. I bet you have more tricks of the trade than you realize and we can all use everything we can get to share with each other! Donna Calm Spirit Spector St. Louis, MO

Name: Bill
Location: Phila, Pa
Date: 02/12/2009
Time: 07:10 AM


I wish I could say it will get better, but with this financial crisis, and all it's cuts, mostly to the programs that used to be available to my Mom, are at least 17 months away, so I'm told. I have little or no hope of this situation getting any better any longer, depression has set in deep for me, this system has made a "do-able" hardship too much for me anymore, as of now we are day to day, with nothing to look forward to.


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