Taking care of an elderly loved one is taxing on multiple levels; emotionally, physically, mentally, and psychologically.
You may have mixed feelings. Perhaps this is you: You’re grateful for the opportunity to take care of your loved one, but also resentful for having to give up big parts of your own life. Then you feel guilty for feeling resentful. You’re also emotionally and physically exhausted. On top of all that, a faraway relative visits briefly and gives you “advice” that you of course have already tried. You feel isolated because caregiving takes you away from your friends. Maybe it’s also taking its toll on your marriage.
Then there is the nature of the relationship with your loved one. Perhaps your relationship has always been close and loving. On the other hand, maybe your loved one was not so good to you, and here you are sacrificing your autonomy and freedom for them. You might have a hard time knowing how to pace yourself because you don’t know how much time they have left. You’re in the horrible position of having to consider their financial resources against how long you have been told to expect them to live. Do you have to consider placement in a facility even though you at one time thought that unthinkable? The idea of searching for placements is daunting. “Where do I begin?” You may find old emotions surfacing? You want to do what is best for your loved one, but you feel like you are reaching your limit.
You are not alone!
These are the kinds of experiences that come up for caregivers every day, and yet we don’t talk honestly about what it’s really like.
In therapy with me you can express these feelings freely without judgement. We can explore the dynamic and nuances of your relationship and together come to a better understanding. You can improve on how you are coping. In addition to emotional support and exploration, I can provide practical guidance in navigating the world of elder care.