Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

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Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

by KathlieB on Mon Sep 11, 2017 02:38 AM

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My husband was diagnosed with Stage IV prostate cancer in August. His cancer has metathesized pretty much everywhere. He went from a very active person to unable to do very much of anything. He is actually doing much better dealing with things than I am.

I am having a extremely hard time being the caregiver. And no there isn't anyone else that can be the caregiver. I do okay for about 6 hours, and then I just can't handle it anymore. I just bite my tongue and walk away. All the while, I am becoming more and more resentful and depressed. 

I don't know what to do, I was never much of an indoor person and now I have to cook and clean constantly. He has a catheter and that really bothers me. I am not a nurse.

As I read this, I feel even worse, like I am a horrible person. If I can't handle things now, how am I ever going to deal when things deteriorate?

RE: Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

by imyaya on Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:49 PM

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Please don't beat yourself up over it.  I have the same feelings at times.  Remeber it is not him you resent. It is the disease. Not many of us were prepared for caregiving when our spouse became ill. Please continue to take time for yourself. Caregiving  for a loved one is the hardest job you will ever have, the worst paying, and sometimes the most thankless. But know that people like me do understand. Blessings to you. Yaya

RE: Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

by Possibilities on Tue Oct 31, 2017 01:08 PM

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Hi Kathlie, contact social services at the hospital or through social security.  He should be listed as 100% disabled and there are services available to help.  I'm also terminal and these groups are always checking with me to see if I need assistance yet.  Hospice groups can also help even if he's not "officially dying".  You don't have to do this all on your own.  Don't feel guilty!!  I couldn't take care of someone else either. I tried with my neighbor who was dying and quickly found out that just wasn't for me.  There are reasons why some people go into nursing and millions of us don't!  : )  Best of luck.

RE: Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

by PCinVirginia on Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:11 PM

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Kathlie B,

I feel your pain.  I'm the only caregiver for my husband too.  I have a full time job, which fortunately I can work from home and I'm stepping into my husband's role in his business.  It is definitely overhwelming.

I hired a "housekeeper" that comes in five hours a day - five days a week.  She is fantastic.  My house has never been so clean. 

More importantly, my husband is comfortable with her even though he prefers that I fix and bring his meals and refreshments.  He didn't want an outside caregiver and my insurance will only pay for an hour of hygene help so I guess that is bathing and cutting nails.  So, that isn't a help and I didn't activate that.  He doesn't do anything in an hour!

Check in with the social worker at your hospital or cancer treatment center.  Your insurance may provide help and if your husband is Medicare eligible, they may cover caregiving.

My husband gets in-home occupational and physical therapy (under Medicare Part A).  That's an hour a couple of times a week that may be helpful to your husband and give you a little break.

RE: Help - not dealing well with caregiving...

by gusbuster on Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:43 PM

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Your situation is the reason why my wife does what she does...She's a professional private care giver who specializes in hospice care.

As mentioned, you can get help from various sources. Some at no cost or little expense (everything is a big expense when on a fixed income).

 

If you do go the route of private caregiver, think about what you exactly need. Do you want:

·         Someone just to take care of your spouse and their needs?

·         How many hours?

·         What will be their duties?

·         Do you need a certified nursing assistant or just somebody who’s experienced in caregiving?

One thing don’t do is nickel and dime the person. Remember you are hiring them for their time and skill.

 

You would be surprised some of the things that will come up. You shouldn’t feel ashamed or anything like that. It’s overwhelming sometimes. Plus, you still have your regular duties to do.

I didn’t see it mentioned but I know my church has various kinds of outreach programs also for people stuck at home and have to care for a sick love one. 

It’s not selfish to want some time alone. You must to recharge the batteries.  I would spend nights with my dad (dying from renal failure) to give my mom a break. I always saw the difference in my mom from the nights the siblings stayed with dad and when we couldn’t.

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