My friend who did full-time care giving for her father through various medical crises and to death ended out with PTSD. Very traumatic. Was also completely lost once he died since she had no other life left.
Tamara, I hope your friend is doing better after all she went through. I’m not surprised she was diagnosed with PTSD. I don’t think outsiders always realize what a toll caregiving can take on someone. All the emotions–anxiety, guilt, fear, even resentment. The physical drain and stress on relationships. So many layers of issues to deal with. My mother passed away from cancer when I was 21 years old. I had a 4 month old baby at the time (my first). I cared for Mom in our home for as long as I could. One night she fell and hurt… Read more »
That’s awful, and very familiar. My Mom was my rock, she could do anything, solve any problem. Her memory started slipping and she got bizarrely cruel, was physically abusive to me (I’m disabled, so extra fun)… then was dx’d with early onset Alzheimer’s three years ago – that’s not early stages, that means younger than usual. Such a cruel illness, and she changed almost overnight. Stays in bed all day, doesn’t remember she did that yesterday, so she’ll say she just want one day to be lazy…I have no idea how to help that part but to hug her. I… Read more »
“you hurt, I hurt” – not sure how half of that sentence went away.
Being a caregiver to a loved one is hard even more so when they have memory problems .
You love them but it is hard to watch them go though this and I have been down that road with my Grandma .
It is nice to be reading a book that in some ways mirrors what I am going through. Whenever one reads about something one is personally going through I believe it helps to normalize it. It’s also good to be getting the word out on such a terrible yet relatively new disease. I didn’t realize a reading group like this existed. I used to run a nonfiction book group through our library. I have been a caregiver for over 10 years and it’s been a wonderful yet difficult experience.
I experienced taking care of my mother several times. Once we even in with here to help- was supposed to be a month or two…. 1st time was hop (re)placement, she was just getting over that when she fell and fractured her ankle, then getting that – she dislocated her shoulder. We ended up being there almost 2 years. … She’s back on her feet …somewhat. And we finally had to make the decision to just move out, so she would have to start doing things for herself. It was tough, but a necessary step for my own mental health… Read more »
I have a close friend that ended up being the caretaker for both her mother and father, who were both dealing with Alzheimer’s. She finally had to quit work to care for them full time- after her Dad managed to find car keys and take off on a drive. After a Silver Alert was put out, the police found him about 50 miles away, unsure of who he was or where he was going. He couldn’t be left without constant supervision after that. Her mother was more lucid, at first. But after her Dad passed away, she started going down.… Read more »
As a caregiver you learn how to balance your needs and another persons needs. It’s not easy but it’s doable.
My mother is going through the beginning stages of dementia. So far, she knows us kids (there are five of us) but she mixes up the grandkids. She can’t do things we always knew her for like cinnamon rolls and iced tea. She always knew dates. She no longer remembers my birth story, our life story-when, where. One brother makes sure she gets her morning meds, my other brother and my niece take turns with her evening meds. So far, she is staying in her home with her little rescue dog. She doesn’t always remember where he came from or… Read more »
My husband is my caregiver. As my body continues to change, I often wonder how he will feel as time goes on.
I believed the real life turmoil that the author wrote about -disappearances by aunt Tweet, blame game from Marcus, as well as Tabitha’s sisters. Kudos for fiction that was enjoyable, thought provoking and did not focus on sex and violence.
I have not experienced taking care of a loved one outside of my three children. Tabitha’s experience left me feeling overwhelmed. I do not know what I would do in her situation. I admire the strength and heart of all who posted and relate to Tabitha’s experience.
Being a caregiver is extremely hard. My mom has taken over my grandmother’s role as caregiver to our family after she took care of her until she passed away last year and then my grandfather until he passed away just last week. Prior to that it was my grandma who had taken care of her aunts and mother. I grew up watching the toll and sacrifices being a caregiver can have on a person but the peace when they return home that God seems to give the person who cared for the sick amazing. I don’t mean a peace of… Read more »
I have not been a care giver, but my sister was in charge of arranging care givers for my father once he could no longer care for himself after my mother died. It took a lot of energy and was time consuming for her. I hope I was not like Tabitha’s sister in causing her additional stress
My husband’s grandmother went through dementia caused by alzheimer’s for years. Seeing some of the symptoms in this book and the stresses that Tabitha goes through remind me of those years. It is so difficult finding a balance when you struggle through something like this. His grandfather was affected the most, but we all felt the stress. No one knew what the right answer was, and it weighed heavily on everyone near us. And then when family unfamiliar with her condition visited, they had no idea how deep those stresses ran.
I truly felt Tabitha and her sisters need to take care of their aunt. The love they had for her was beautiful. It is very difficult to be a caregiver and it can make or break you without support from friends, family and even outsiders.
I felt the same way. I thought it would have been better for them to support each other and create a break for one another from time to time. But, this dynamic did help illustrate caregiver burn out and why it’s important to support one another as a family.
I was able to witness a family member caretaking for someone with this condition. I was able to witness firsthand how difficult and overwhelming the situation can be. Caretaking for someone with a condition like this can be a divisive factor in a family because everyone has different perspectives and abilities on what they can and can’t deal with and that can cause a great deal of judgment and misunderstanding
Being the caregiver for any loved one is a stressor, and Alzheimer’s exacts an exquisite toll on everyone involved. I have been fortunate, as an R.N. to work with all kinds of people in close relationships. Dealing with the gravity of disease can be overwhelming. It is an imperative and absolute necessity to assist in providing care and relief for those involved; employ every assistance available to mediate the effects of that stress. My sweet little Grandmother would suck her teeth and say “God love them. Bless their hearts.” when she heard about someone in pain. I agree wholeheartedly .
My 88 year old mom received a cancer diagnosis, and was given (she refused treatment) four months to live. I brought her from an apartment to our house. It was right up there with my most stressful experiences in my life. She had very specific food preferences and times she wanted to eat and so I had to cook two meals everyday–one for her and one for my husband and myself. My husband and I had no privacy, and were limited in where/when we could go places, because she didn’t want to stay alone. After a year, I couldn’t do… Read more »
Often one member of the family steps up to care for the person. That can lead to frustration and stress within the family. I found too that my mother relied on me to always be there but she was so grateful for the least attention from the others who rarely visited her
I became my mother’s caregiver at 23. My husband was 20 in college, working full time and we just had our son about 6 months prior. In the thick of things it was isolating every outing was subject to change according to her mood. Family made her erratic behavior a reflection on our failings as caregivers. We were at times resentful of the family that talked suggestions without support. Ultimately looking back on the years we had with her we are so glad we made the time. And govern the chance we’d do it all over again.
Being a caregiver affects everything that a person does if a situation calls for it. Everything in life sometimes must revolve the needs of other if they are unable to take care of themselves.
I bet being the main caregiver of an elderly family could be very straining and tiring. I don’t want to be a burden to anyone in my family, but at the same time if I need professional care, I just pray I am handed over to the nicest facility and people with compassion and morale character.
Caregiving is a thankless job BUT if I had to do it again, would not put my Dad in a nursing home instead choosing to bring help into my home. At the end Hospice was there every step of the way as well as 24 Hr sitter service which is how I hope my children take care of me. The cost of the nursing home was added expense for our family. My Dad suffered from Dementia & we went through a lot of the same things that are in book. It was not easy but we have a great family… Read more »