Tired and Exhausted

I care for three people in our family, used to care for four, but he has passed due to old age.
Brother kindly caring for Mum this week, she had a stroke.
Friend caring for my daughter, she’s autistic.
I thought life would be okay, but no!!!
Hubby had a flair up, got hardly any sleep.
Took him to the doc, who has told him to do a covid test, which he refused.
Smoked last night because he’s scared.
Hubby has heart problems, copd, angina, and depression, he takes medication for it all
Needs me constantly.
All I want to do right now is get a good sleep I enjoy caring but I do think the good LORD has given me rather too much to handle.
At least my housework up-to-date.
Can’t find a gardener for love nor money.
The lawns cut, my hedges are trimmed, buy hey ho, it’s worn me out
I’m laid in bed.
And to top it off, I have a bed to make up that’s coming from Argos today.
In the words of Freddie I want to break free!

Hi Joy
You are close to burn out, you are doing too much.
You’re not alone, you are here, keep checking back for replies.

Do the three have carers? have they had a care needs assessment? Have you had a carers needs assessment?
If not, get onto social services to arrange them.
If you have, when was the last review? Arrange a review if needed.

Call the Carers UK helpline to talk about this and the help you should be getting before you are burnt out/in an ambulance/in a straightjacket.

Carers UK information and support
Our telephone Helpline is available on 0808 808 7777 from Monday to Friday, 9am – 6pm or you can contact us by email (advice@carersuk.org)

You said your husband is on meds for all his conditions, does your husband have regular reviews/checks for his COPD and is his heart monitored?

Do you have the oximeter finger device to check blood oxygen levels? I find this very useful to check on my mother, I do it regularly to see where her ‘normal’ level is at and when she has any shortness of breath. It also gives the pulse rating and shows a line for the heart rhythm.
A fascinating thing the GP told me last year was about unexpected shortness of breath when she is sat and relaxed, he said it will be the body doing its work eg digesting food, processing waste or whatever and sometimes it uses a bit more energy and effort which can cause some breathlessness.

My mother has COPD and heart disease, it is scary for her when she is seriously breathless or having a bad angina attack. The fears of the inevitable may be happening and thereafter the threat of it being constant.
There are times I will not leave my mother and there are times she wants me with her because she is below par/lost some confidence, but outside of those occasions she is happy pottering in her chair while I get on with jobs. But she hasn’t got depression, fortunately for me she is very cheery.

You both have mobile phones? you are a call or a text message away - not the best in an angina attack, but you could be in the shower or mowing the lawn.
We have a socket plug doorbell, my mother has the ring device and uses that to call me to her, not always something she can do if she is having an angina attack. I also check in on her every so often, if it is warm weather it is every 10 minutes, cooler weather every 30 mins, if it is a heatwave, I stay with her with the fan on keeping the room cooler for her.

It is harder in the spring, she’s been used to me being in the house through winter and now I need to be doing work in the garden, greenhouse and veg patch, she has further deteriorated, so I have to rebuild the confidence in her that I am on hand. I put timed alarms in my phone to check back on her, I listen to radio programmes/dramas via wireless headphones on my mobile phone to also help me with time and have the battery doorbell with me.

Can you get him involved in doing something like jigsaws or building a model airplane or some kind of craft hobby to occupy his mind? or doing the family ancestry? something to absorb his mind?

I gave up on finding someone to mow my lawn and ordered a robomower. This one doesn’t need the wires in the lawn, it has sensors. Not cheap but will pay for itself and it is fabulous. Mowing was good exercise but couldn’t always get out to mow and the mowing in itself was 2 miles of mowing lines. A lot of guys who do mowing have a certain price and a size of lawn they are prepared to do, beyond that size they don’t seem to want to know! They come and look and say oh it’s a big lawn! Then I never see them again.

Hi Joy,

yes I’m often in the feeling tired and exhausted state too and I just care for one person (with autism, related LD and health needs,) not three!

Wow, you are more ahead than me with house work and gardening all done for now.

Does the bed have to be put up today?

Sounds like you need to listen to your body and rest and recuperate today. A sleep will do you good. I think you should tell your husband that if you collapse of exhaustion you won’t be able to care for any of them and today you need to catch up on sleep.

Get your husband to open the door for the Argos delivery. If he stands well back they could lift it into the hallway for him. You could put a note on the front door telling the delivery folk that due to disability it will take a little longer for someone to get to the door.


PS fab that brother and friend are helping out - however for it to be a proper break - you really need someone to look after husband too…

It’s time YOU gave up gardening! If you have a hedge, there are 2 options. Take it out, or get someone else to cut it.
Find someone who can cut the grass for you. Even better, build a patio. Have you thought about asking the Scouts if they have anyone who could help regularly, as part of a Community Service badge, or Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.
I know you don’t want to do this, I didn’t either, but after I was newly widowed, newly disabled, I had no choice.
Doing away with all the borders saved masses of work.

You are now doing the work of at least THREE people. The work you used to do, your husband used to do, and caring for your husband. Three into one just doesn’t go! Then you have mum and daughter too.

My son was brain damaged at birth, now 43 he lives in a flat with carer support.
Is your daughter getting any support from Social Services, or mum?

Perhaps try the allotments. Some gardeners work online too.

As Bowlingbun said, reduce the garden work. Over the last few years I have been taming the garden to remove all the things that are hard work/time consuming and had a fence put up against the neighbours hedge. It’s really made a difference and freed up a lot of time.

If you are in facebook and haven’t done so, try going into the Market place section and do a search in there for gardeners and look at the posts by others and look through the replies for recommendations. Also do a search in there for tradesmen groups in your area and have a look in there too.
Be wary of them not wanting to remove a hedge or shrub etc, you are basically removing work for them in trimming it!