Hi everyone my name is Zoe. I’m 55. I guess you could say I am an “old hand” at caring. I cared for my late elderly husband when I was about 20 and then my other late older husband who was my best friend, lover and partner in laughs every day. I am now about to care for my Dad who is 85. I just wanted to write or speak to someone who would understand how I was feeling during the meltdown yesterday, which was really me crying a lot and feeling so depressed. My Dad is in hospital at the moment after having a fall have, a urine infection and being very confused. He fractured his pelvis. He is medically fit, the doctors tell me but we are waiting for a care package to be arranged. What was driving me insane was that the ward staff will say he’s due to come out one day and then it gets delayed, mentally I am psyched up for whatever happens when he comes out. I have been so afraid of what might happen when he does come home. Will I have to stay with him all the time? It is so tiring. I have had to stop my anit-depressants as the doctors won’t prescribe a repeat prescription as I have just moved here to be nearer Dad. They say I have to have an appointment with the doctor, fine chance as they only give you telephone appointments and I have been too busy to commit to a time slot or even go to the surgery to book one. I guess I need to make a nuisance of myself and demand that I need to have the tablets.
We have private carers that came in 3 times a day but the care package they are trying to arrange is for 6 weeks of free care. I will take that as well as the private carers as they can work together and really look after my Dad. He was a very bossy person and a control freak, will he be that man again? He is half in this world and half talking to Spirit. I do love him though and want to do my best for him but not at a cost to my personal freedom and health. I feel very guilty saying I don’t want to care for him 24/7, I guess that feeling crops up a lot on here. I know it’s not going to go on for years, months probably as he gets weaker. I have a sister who could help me out with the caring and decisions but after I found out she was also helping herself to his money she flounced off along with her controlling b of a partner.
Writing this, I have discovered how angry and upset I am. So thank you for reading. I have a bit of clarity of what I need to do next. I need to give the doctor’s surgery hell and sort out my tablets, then I need to sort out night-time care for my Dad. He can afford to pay for it as he has a good pension. Feeling better for having somewhere to write this. xx
If your father has a good pension, do you think it is time to at least look into residential care?
If this is not a viable option, do you think a live in carer might be an option?
YOUR health and your life matters too and you do not have to be with him 24/7. Others will be along later but I wanted you to know that you are not alone and this is a wonderful forum and there will be a huge amount of empathy and compassion for what you are dealing with. Sadly the hospital discharge delay thing seems fairly common now.
Do you have a local Support for Carers? If so, it might be worth phoning them as they are very experienced and could give a safe place to vent and hopefully get support? I have had various telephone befrienders over the years, and most have been carers themselves so will be able to relate to your concerns. Worth a try Zoe?
I hope you are feeling some release from your meltdown and see you are getting some clarity.
Your emotions are a natural human response.
Discharge isn’t always so straightforward, there can be a lot of yes/no along the way.
Have they talked about things to help him at home eg a rollator walking frame etc. You need them to assess his ability to move at home and check his home for what aids he needs to help him.
They cannot and should not discharge him until everything is in place.
Care - don’t have your private carers in at the same time as the other ones because the Gvt supplied ones will probably tell their boss that you have carers and no point them coming.
If you are having private carers during those 6 weeks have them come at inbetween sessions if there is anything for them to do or wait until the final week and start them back the following week - inform them before they make the rosters up, or tell them at the end of week 5 to start a week’s time.
When we had private carers and my mother went into hospital I didn’t tell the care company she was back until week 6 and booked them in for the following week.
You have a lot to deal with, your fathers conditions, the issues with your sister, being alone for the care without your sister, your fathers character. I hope after your meltdown you can now unravel it all and get things into perspective and think about his care at home and also about Plan B, if he ends up needing to be in a dementia home because he becomes unmanageable, research homes and have two in mind.
Have you got power of attorney? Does your father have the decision making ability to make you a POA? Without that, being his agent to make decisions in his interests, the Gvt - the soc svs will be his agent acting in his interests in charge of his money and welfare - deciding which home he goes to.