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LET'S TALK ABOUT IT  | Let's Talk Archive | Discussion Forum | Carenotes

Let's Talk

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.

Question/Topic for March 2010

A caregiver sent in this query…
My husband is in a nursing home and I have become friends with a man whose wife is also a resident.  We have spent time together listening to music in the day room of the facility and attending afternoon and evening programs there.  Both of our spouses are bedridden and unable to communicate mentally or physically and both of us are very  lonely as a result.   I feel that we are supporting each other as caregivers but I am concerned about our family’s possible negative reaction to our friendship should we ever get together outside the facility.
I would be interested to see how others feel about this situation as well as how they handle it.

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Name: Ann Tholen
Location: Wichita Falls, Tx
Date: 03/03/2010
Time: 06:35 AM


I would do whatever makes YOU happy. Both you and your friend enjoy each others company and why not? It is your life and life is too short to worry what others including family think.

Name: Anne Pennington
Location: colorado
Date: 03/18/2010
Time: 12:35 PM


I support you! My husband has a brain injury and I am so lonely sometimes.

Name: Darbi Rogers
Location: NC
Date: 03/19/2010
Time: 09:17 PM


You know, somewhere, somehow, when you become the caregiver for your loved one, you need to not lose sight of yourself and your needs. I personally feel that being friends with, sharing music, activities, etc., with someone will not only help you to deal with the struggles and stress of your situation but I think it helps you to be a better, more compassionate, caring spouse. It's not a perfect world. You both need support. If the family can't handle it...let them change places with you. NO ONE can imagine what it's like to be in your position unless they've been there personally. I have. It's the loneliest place in the world. Hopefully your family has enough compassion to understand that you too are a victim here. God Bless You and Yours.

Name: Patrice Carson
Location: Houston,Texas
Date: 03/23/2010
Time: 02:53 PM


Can you talk to the family members you refer to,and have them understand your feelings like you can with your "nursing home friend"? I'm sure not. My Mother is in a nursing home and I find talking with other vistors much more rewarding then trying to explain feelings others can't understand. I think you should concentrate on what each of your spouce's would want for you and what each of you need that the other can provide. Life is short and at any moment our situations can change and put us in a negative situation. Grab all the happiness and love you can find, expecially now. Being a caregiver is far more stressful and emotionally draining than loved ones can understand. We think and feel things that someone outside our realm can't possibly comprehend. Enjoy each other, grab life and understanding while you can. If others can't understand they most likely will someday when their life follows in our footsteps and they become the caregiver instead of judge and jury of our lives. I hope this dosen't sound harse, but I am with my mother daily and watch as other residents sit without loved ones there but maybe once or twice a month. There's only 4 or 5 of us who go daily, or make sure someone is there in our place. Until those you think might judge you devote that part of their life to a loved one,they have no right to affect what little happiness you and your friend share. Good luck to you and most of all, take care of yourself. Patrice


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