New member, thoughts on caring role

I’m f(31) and live in the north west of England. I’m currently caring for my ex partner who suffers with severe mental illness. I find the caring role particularly tough. I’ve been doing this since 2013 and I feel guilty for my feelings but I wish I had more freedom. I feel consumed by guilt and not a day goes by where I don’t consider jacking it all in and just moving far away. I could never do it because I care too much, but this is the loneliest and toughest thing I’ve ever experienced. I suppose I wondered if anyone has any similar experiences or feels the same. Apologies for the bombardment of feelings. I hope I haven’t come across as cold or insensitive.
Anyway, on the positive side There is a degree of stability in the house that hasn’t been present for a long time. There hasn’t been an attempt at taking their life for a long while and this is slowly easing some tension I’m carrying. As for me, I have a cat, she keeps me going. I like watching films, and taking walks in nature, taking photos as a start up hobby, something I do with the person I care for, which has been really great and beneficial for both of us. I have a lot of interests and hobbies I can’t pursue currently but I hope in the future things will continue to improve to a point I’m able to have more independence and possibly look into working or volunteering. Thanks for taking the time to read this. I’d love to make some new friends or people to chat online to . Best wishes xxx

Welcome to the forum. That sounds really tough. I am glad you have hobbies, it is so important to take time for yourself.

I care for my Mum with dementia and have a young family and a part time job. Previously I looked after my Dad too, but he died a year ago. Before I found the forum I felt a bit like you, just desperate to escape the situation. With help from here, I have a much better balance in my life between family, care, and now even have a job.

What job/volunteering role would you like to do? What are the baby steps you can take to achieving this? Often the starting point is getting some help for the person you care for? Do you have any outside help to give you some time to yourself?

Hello and welcome!

What sort of work would you enjoy doing? Do you have a resume or not? Start by looking at job advertisements online. Finding work is about taking little steps. In other words, start slowly. Make a list of skills which are essential for the workplace and go from there. Talk to a employment services person about work as well. There are even online career quizzes you could do that would help. Good luck! One place to start your search at is the local library, there are career books there. Or you can find out about courses that help you enter the workplace too. Ask your local community college about possible courses or search online for adult education classes. I hope this is useful!

Me time is essential for unpaid carers. I’m glad to see that you have hobbies, everyone should have at least two. I care for my little brother part time and I work too. My hobbies are sewing, talking, reading, and writing. I also do some cookery and massage therapy to make additional money. When was the last time you took a proper break? Even if it is half a day that still counts. For example today I met a long time friend at a local library. We talked and ate a quick lunch in the tearoom together. Then we walked around in the open air for a while taking some photos of the ducks on the lake. On Friday I am going dancing at a disco. Make some plans. Develop your hobbies.