I feel helpless because of mum. My sister can not help as she has mental problems. I have been so busy supporting my dad eg finding a nursing home etc. now the emotional pain is starting. This will be her last Christmas she has 3-6 months.
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Hi Victoria It sounds like you are in a bit of a bind and the full weight of caring for your family is falling on you. Is it your Mum who is in the nursing home or your Dad? Whatever, the story, clearly your Mum will not be with you next Christmas and that is pretty heavy stuff. At this stage, in the midst of everything that is happening, it is important that you look after yourself - if you fall apart the rest of the family are not going to be helped. It is worth calling the Cancer Helpline 13 11 20 as they will know what other support services you can call on. Carers Australia - www.carersaustralia.com.au is a useful organisation to get in touch with. Try and get some things organised before Christmas as Christmas can be a pretty awful time of the year when you need help. I don't know about other States but the Cancer Council Victoria does have a brochure about coping over Christmas. It makes a lot of good suggestions about things you can do to reduce stress whilst you are caring for your Mum and Dad. Hang in there and I hope it goes well. Cheers Sailor There are no signposts in the sea. Vita Sackville-West
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Hi thanks for your support. I am trying to be strong. My Dad is one of those men who will not let you know what is on his mind. He tells me some things but has never been one of those hug/lovable Dad's. Mum is the one in the Nursing Home. I have to read my dad's face to gather how he is going. Mum is starting radiation, and it will be intense. I am the only other person who is available, and I live 145 K from Melbourne. Dad took her for her first appointment and came home exhausted. I told him that we can share the load and that I can take her to a couple per week, and that he does not have to do it all by himself, he is 86. I get the "OH NO I CAN MANAGE' thing. So I will just turn up. I think my Mum is taking it better than my dad. She is looking forward to Christmas. I read the info on this site about Christmas and how to cope. Things are a bit surreal at the moment with regards to it being her last. Dad is controlling every situation and I have persuaded him to let her make friends with the nursing staff, as she will need them the most later. He has backed off a bit. He was smothering her. Thanks for letting me vent on you. My sister is bi-polar and cannot help. Its funny, some of the younger generation are so preoccupied with their lives that Christmas celebrations are more important than supporting me. I actually live near the sea. p.s. trying to find my way around this site Cheers
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Hi there Victoria. I have just read your story and I am in sort of the same situation. I am 58 and my 83yr old dad was diagonised with oesophageus cancer 12 mths ago. He has had radiation of 8 weeks but the doctors said he was too old to have chemo as he lives by himself. I live a 5hr train trip away from him and I feel useless as I can't be there for him to visit in hospital, make his meals and to be just there for him at the end. He can't swallow at all and can only tolerate pureed food from Meals on Wheels. He is having a stent put in this Fri but doctors tell me this is only a palliative measure to make it easier for him in the end. He is SO stubborn and won't move closer to me and to make things worse family/friends say I'm being silly to cry all the time as he has lived "a long good life and it is his time to go" but I can't handle that thought. He has always been my rock and my emotional strength and I don't know how I can deal with him not here. But my dad is always and has always been so positive but I just can't be. This site has been a great comfort to me even though I only joined today. Nice to know there are people you can chat to and know what you're going through. Hope things are going ok with you. Take care Chris
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Hi Chris, Hard isn't it. We have always had them there for us... and now its there turn for us to keep them safe and love them to the end. I am very tired too. Have just returned home, and then will be off again Sunday. My poor father is trying to manage his feelings by himself. It is not working. I hear him at night when I stay moaning in the dark, and I can do nothing. We baby boomers have learnt a lot from them. Strength. Hang in there. Your Dad will know how much you are trying to do with him, even though like my Dad they keep it all locked up. Be a MAN and not burden anyone.... boo humbug. I am getting firm now, as he is going south with his emotions. I have contacted palliative care for counseling for him, and have said that it for myself, so as to coax him in. Perhaps you can do it too. I will try anything to get through this. Hey let it all out. I am getting very little comfort from people around me. Everyone thinks I am so strong, or some just have their own problems to deal with. I cry alone over the silliest things. Monday it was Mum's washing on the line. How terrible when the time comes to never see it there again. I am with you. I am 56, and have never experienced anything like this before. Chin up, or down for a cry, you have me doing it too. Take care, I am thinking of you too x
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Hi Victoria. Hope you don't mind me msg you but today has been really hard. Dad went hospital to have stent put in oesophageus as he can't eat/swallow but I got a call this morning from a neighbour who checks on him twice a day (I live 6 hrs away by train) and she had to rush him to hospital as he was laying on floor vomiting blood and couldn't even call 000. My daughter and I went up to see him and he is not too good but it is time for him to move down with me and be close to his family. I think he got a big scare too (he is so stubborn and independent) but any tips for convincing him to move. I think he is too scared to make the move. But he can't stay on his own. I don't know what to do. xoChris
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