Hello - am I being selfish?

Hi everyone - so my name is Sonia and I live in Derbyshire with my husband N and two of my three girls.
I have been a carer for my husband N since 1994. N has Rheumatoid Arthritis and over the years his condition has worsened. He has been on many of the drugs and sadly now been told that he has exhausted all current treatments, including the biologics. His has kidney problems, diverticulitis and AF which have all be caused by past drugs or treatments. He has also been diagnosed with Osteo in recent months. N tries to keep going - he does really well. But lately he has been struggling, particularly with his AF. We are now waiting to see a cardiologist. So that is the background. Now for the selfish part - I have a little part-time job, just a few hours a week… I work as an Activities Coordinator at a local Residential home and absolutely love it. The trouble is, I feel like I am being selfish leaving N - especially as he is at the moment. I don’t know what to do - is it right that I feel selfish or should I be having time away from our busy home. What do you think - be lovely to hear from other carers. Thank you.

Hi Sonia,Ian 54 full time carer for father 93… your not selfish,just a human response to your situation,it’s good that you have a part-time job.being a carer is the most differcult job in the world(we all understand how you feel).anything I can help you with don’t be frightened to ask. Ian

I understand how rewarding your job is Sonia. I did the same job for 16 years but at a Day Centre and loved it.

It’s not selfish of you at all. We all need time to ourselves. A few hours a week is not going to have an adverse effect on your husband.

I also know a lady who has given up everything to care for her husband and she comes to a craft group once a month for a couple of hours and she is so fed up that she spends the whole time telling us how awful her life is. We all understand and sympathise but we wish she could come and switch off for her own benefit.

Carry on with your job!

Hi Sonia,
definitely not selfish at all.

In fact your husband most likely benefits too - as I’m sure you come home happier after a break/change of scene and with something interesting to tell him about.

Remember your needs are as important as his! (I should take my own advice :laughing: )


No you are not being selfish. I wish I had the option to do a little work.

I’m fairly sure that I’m a bit selfish at times, I see nothing wrong with that. It just means that sometimes I do put myself first.

How else is one supposed to survive being a full time carer without troubling our completely knackered NHS Mental Health Service?


Welcome to the Forum. I would say just the opposite. Keeping yourself sane and able to care is probably the wisest thing you can do. Your husband will benefit in the long run if you do not feel trapped and resentful. It is essential to carve out some time for yourself.

Carry on working!

You NEED to go to work, a change of scenery, different people, a feeling of self worth mean that you are happier, and your husband benefits. Does he have any outside interests? Can he use a computer? He needs a change of scenery too. Does he have a Lifeline alarm?