• caregiver woes

    Asked by adad on Saturday, March 16, 2013

    caregiver woes

    Father has cancer and undergone treatment for about 2 months. Mother cannot take stress, admitted into mental hospital. What to do.

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • geekling's Avatar

      If you are unable to assist, hire help.

      If there is a lack of $$, see the good folks at your State's Department of Elderly Affairs. Don't forget to speak to the doc as he might have resources once he understands your family's needs.

      What is your Mom being treated for? Some folks, assuming it is affordable, benefit from assisted living. Some insurance plans include long term health care. It sounds like you may also need an estate planner for their needs.

      Dunno. you need local and professional assistance.

      Very good luck.

      over 4 years ago
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      I found that the further into the future you look, the more stress and overwhelm you might experience. Try living in the right now-- focus on now, and take one problem at a time as it comes. One day at a time. You are bigger than anything that can happen to you in life, and everything is temporary. Tomorrow can be different than today. Try to focus on what you do have rather than only what you do not.

      Take out a pad of paper and pen, and start writing down problems to be solved, and things to do. Then set priorities, and do what you can. You don't have to be perfect, and you can handle only one thing at a time. Seek support groups, and don't be shy about seeking and asking for help if you need it. You don't have to do everything alone. Establish a cycle-- a routine, because you will find you're doing the same things over and over. Empower dad to do what he can do for himself as much as possible.

      Get a notebook, with some calendar pages, and to do list, and keep all your information in one place. That's a big stress reducer. Write everything as it happens onto the calendar, and any future appointments. Gather all of the medications and supplies and put them in one place where they can be managed easily.

      Best wishes to you and our family.

      over 4 years ago
    • bbay65's Avatar

      Wow, sorry to hear the tough times you are experiencing. They will pass. Until then, make sure you take care of yourself. Look for local support group for caregivers. You won't be helpful if you get burnt-out. Good luck and hang in there.

      over 4 years ago
    • Tracy's Avatar

      As Free Bird said, take it day by day and break it into manageable steps. Take breaks for yourself so you can breath (walk in the park for a few minutes a day, take a warm bath) you need to make sure you take time to clear your brain during the day before you go back to the day to day. Remember that no one can do this alone, find out about the senior resources available to you. You do not need to be perfect in this, we all take this step by step. Tracy

      over 4 years ago
    • Barbs' Avatar

      Three people need support in your family, right now -- your father, your mother, and, not least, your self. I whole-heartedly agree with others here who have advised one-day-at-a-time. That's how I am able to cope with my husband's cancer. But, in addition, you need to create a support team to help you -- friends, family, neighbors, clergy, elder care professionals, your father's medical team and the mental health professionals who treat your mother -- just to start. Make sure you have go-to people for your own emotional needs, too. This is tough, but you can do it . . . With help -- don't try to go it alone -- wishing you peace and strength.

      over 4 years ago
    • reginak's Avatar

      It sounds like you are under quite a bit of stress right now yourself! Does your country or medical facility offer support for family members? Perhaps you and your mom can take advantage of that while still being there for your dad. As others have said, take it one problem and day at a time. Usually you will find at least one good thing or one improvement to make things a bit more bearable.
      Is your father also hospitalized, or is he at home or in assisted-living?

      over 4 years ago
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      I also want to recommend if he has more than one or two medications, buying a pill box and setting it up for him for the week, or if he is able to set it up for himself. It makes it easy for him to remember to take his medications, and provides a visible way to check to be sure he has taken them. If he regularly forgets to take his pills, what I have done is set an alarm for the daytime pills.

      Something like this works well for us http://www.walgreens.com/store/c/ezy-dose-one-day-at-a-time-weekly-medication-organizer-tray/ID=prod6145638-product



      My dad currently has at least 15 pill bottles, plus 2 laxative/stool softener pill bottles, two big bottles of liquid laxatives, 2 inhalers, and an emergency box of medications in the fridge. I would go crazy without the pill box. I shouldn't have forgotten to mention that, because that's the simplest and most helpful little thing we have. Knock wood, have never missed a medication.

      over 4 years ago
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      Also, if you're managing the meds, if a medication is stopped, and there are pills left over, stick that bottle in a zip lock bag, and that goes hideaway in the back room somewhere where it will not be confused with his regular meds. Keep only the pills he uses together in the place where you organize everything. I found that to be helpful.

      over 4 years ago

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