August 11, 2016 at 11:20 pm #51064
I believe I am nearly past the point of no return. I am so depressed and just don’t care anymore. I give up!!!!
My husband was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic cancer in February of this year. He had part of his spine rebuilt and was in the hospital and rehab for about two weeks. He then went through 4 weeks of radiation and now is on chemotherapy. Well, the hospital bills are coming in and because their billing department billed incorrectly, the Medicare copays are coming in (they should have billed VA first. This was an emergency, I contacted VA, and it would have been covered at a non participating hospital).
Now, I am also disabled, have fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. He is on Social Security so our income is limited. On top of that, the chemo has affected his teeth (they are falling out) and he has lost his hearing from oxotocity caused from the chemo drugs. He went to an audiologist today and he has lost most of his hearing. Now, a hearing aid is about $4200 per the specialist. We don’t qualify for any programs because our combined income is too high but our income is to low to be able to afford all the luxuries of illness (just kidding… these are not luxuries). So, none of this is getting paid or fixed.
On top of that, I have cared for a mother with Alzheimer’s and a mother in law with dementia in the past. I thought my caregiving days were done. I am tired. I am resentful. I cannot do this again. I don’t care to get out of bed, or shower, clean or cook. I feel I am near the point of no return. The stress makes me sicker. I don’t sleep at night. I go out an lay on the sofa and read. I feel as if my spouse is being selfish, prolonging something that is inevitable. His disease is terminal and he will not get better. His treatments, called palliative care, were supposed to help with cancer related symptoms but he has gotten sicker and sicker and sicker. And in the meantime, here I am, trying to maintain a smile, keep up on all the things including home repairs and keeping all these feelings inside because I cannot share with him how I feel. I cannot make him feel bad to make myself feel good. Sometimes I feel I am on the brink of insanity.
And, I recently contacted another support group which told me they were concerned because I didn’t have enough support. Well, duh. Yeh… That is why I contacted them, for support. That attempt at sharing was a waste of time and energy.
My family lives 2000 miles away. I have no close friends anymore. They disappeared when the going got rough.
Now my husband is 67 and I am 62, so we are not spring chickens but still young enough to enjoy our lives. But, there is no enjoyment anymore. There is only doctors, medication, bills, illness and depression.
I have suffered tremendous losses in the past 1.5 years. My grandson was killed (shot), two brothers passed away, one on Christmas, 2015 and one in April of this year. And, now this damn cancer…
I have nobody to vent to at this time. I cannot tell my kids how I feel. I don’t want to worry them. Running away may be an option.
And, the doctors don’t truly clarify his situation with him. They offer hope where there is none, they push him for these treatments, knowing that his situation will not get better. He cannot breath without oxygen, he cannot walk more than a few feet. Our life is in our little condo surrounded by four walls and consists of watching tv. He just lays on the couch all day and gets up long enough to walk to bed and go for treatments. There is no fun. There is no enjoyment. There is no sex because he also has a bad heart and cannot breath. There is no life in our lives.
But, yet he fights on and I am resentful because I am the one to have to bear the burden of all of this. But, after writing this, I realize, I am not selfish because after experiencing all the caregiving I have done, I would never do this to someone else. I would never put them through what I have gone through over the years. I would accept my diagnosis and let it take its course. But, that is not him. He cannot give up the control and is afraid. And, I understand.
Thank you for letting me share my feelings. A weight has been lifted from my shoulders.
August 22, 2016 at 12:32 pm #52265
Vent away. That’s a good part of what this space is for. You have no reason to feel guilty about how you feel——I know firsthand what it’s like to live with someone who’s afraid and won’t admit he has no control. My husband was diagnosed with Stage 1A Lung Cancer in 2005 and succumbed to the disease in March of 2011.I was his sole caregiver.
We have a wonderful spousal support group on our site you might want to try. It’s led by Bob Harrison. You might also like to read some of his posts.
I just want you to clarify why you can’t be honest with your children about how you’re feeling. Isn’t it possible they could provide some respite care for you to be able to get away and refresh and reenergize for a few days. Maybe visit a cousin or an old friend.
I also know that many caregivers don’t like asking for help from their friends.The problem there is twofold. You lose touch with your friends who should be there for you and you aren’t giving yourself chance to reach out to them. You might want to try calling someone you were close to and see if you can rekindle a friendship.
Please keep writing. You saw how relieved you felt after unloading here. Doing it regularly is a great idea.
What you’re doing is a lonely thing. No question. I know for myself, once it was over (and so many treatments, operations and therapies were tried) I knew that I had done all I could. I was at peace.
Hugs to you, Adrienne
February 14, 2017 at 3:55 am #61262
This isn’t a new thread but it touches my heart.
I can relate to all that was shared here. All i can offer is to try each day to see a beauty. Some beauty, anywhere. A flower, raindrops, a song, a cup of tea. This is what I have instead of lovemaking instead of humor instead of a partner who is present instead of so much.