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molliaj

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Joined
Mar 27, 2007
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Reason
CALS
Country
US
State
California
City
Williams
Hi - My dad has had ALS since 1989. I started taking care of him when I was 23. I'm now 39 and recently relocated him from my home into town to an apartment with a live-in and a p/t caregiver. My family rallied around to get him into the apartment (no easy feat - he's got a brilliant mind and is a collector of all things) but now they've pretty much disappeared. My brother and father are no longer speaking which makes things harder. I visit daily to bring mail, newspaper and laundry. He seems to be losing his will to live and I feel terrible about it. There is no way I could go back to our previous situation though - I was way past burnout. I'm on meds, see a shrink and my mom insists I need counselling to deal with all of it. My past experience with counselling wasn't so positive - I kept getting told that he was terminal and that I was stressed - it was temporary. Not so. Are any other caregivers getting counselling that helps? I did see an ad once for a counseller who specializes in caregiving issues (Chico, CA) but can't find now. Any suggestions would be welcome. Thanks!
 

CindyM

Moderator emeritus
Joined
Sep 17, 2006
Messages
3,543
Reason
Learn about ALS
Country
US
State
New England
City
Anytown
Welcome molliaj. You found the right place on the internet to post this question. From what I have seen here, folks are helpful and respectful and willing to discuss all topics. I don't have advice to give you, I just wanted to welcome you aboard, so to speak. But I do know that taking care of someone else is very stressful. You've been at it for a long time and it must be conflicting to want the best for him and also a life for yourself. Most of us taking care of parents aleady had a chance to go live it up for a bit.

Let's see what some of our more experienced friends have to offer. Surely there is a solution for your situation! Regards, Cindy
 

Adele

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2007
Messages
12
Reason
PALS
Country
CA
State
Ontario
City
Ottawa
Hi molliaj...I took care of my mum for just a couple of months & like you there are differences between family members. That adds more strss to an already stressful situation. I see a shrink to talk about my feelings, especially now that my mum is in a chronic care hospital. I find that it really helps if you can find councilling that you trust...they don't have all the answers. At times they can even bring out emotions that are uncomfortable. But I believe it's all good. I live in Canada so I have no professionals that I could recommend, yet please continue to find someone to confide in. You have to take good care of yourself in all ways so that you can be there for your father. All the best to you & remember that this site is comforting. God Bless you & your family, Adele
 

sufernan

Active member
Joined
Sep 11, 2006
Messages
66
Reason
Lost a loved one
Country
CA
State
Ontario
City
Toronto
Support groups

From your message I can tell that you love your father very much. I believe that by helping yourself you are also helping your father. I found that the best support was a support group for caregivers, it did not run for too long, but I felt we all had a lot to share and it was wonderful to feel understood.
You may want to check with the ALS society in your area and find out if they have a support group.
Best of luck to you!
Sunny
 
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