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Taking care of daughter and grandson and feel too guilty to take a break.
elisnana posted:
My daughter is very ill with a rare disease and has many surgeries and more coming with chemo and radiation planned. She lives with me so I can care for her and her 3 year old autistic son. I work full time and spend every free minute at doctor appointments and therapy appoints for my grandson. I am very tired and feel terribly guilty for even feeling depressed. The depression comes from knowing my daughter may die and being so tired. I have no support system of my own and have lost the few friends I have because I have no time for myself or them. I wouldn't change a thing because I love my daughter and grandson VERY much and would NEVER consider not caring for them. I can't get outside counseling because I can't afford it due to all the medical bills and don't have the time to go. I am just looking for some support and perhaps ideas on how to cope as the full time caregiver. I think the hardest thing for me is to even take a break without feeling horrible. I have turned into a complete control freak and don't want anyone taking care of my daughter and most times my grandson because it feels like it is the only control I have in a situation that seems so out of control. I don't think about or desire a life of my own. I simply feel as if I need some good news and to be able to take a breath sometimes. Thanks for your Reply!
Andie_WebMD_Staff responded:
Hi Elisnana,

It's normal to feel a little depressed with all the changes and extra care you're providing your daughter and grandson. Your social circle may change as you start seeing friends less, but I would encourage you to look for local support groups and begin fostering new relationships with people who can relate to your current situation.

It's so important to schedule some guilt-free weekly "Me" time for yourself. If you actually schedule it into your week perhaps you'll find that subconsciously you have justified the time away because you know what your schedule permits.

Remember that you need to keep yourself healthy and positive, too. You can't share what you don't have to take care of yourself.

You might also consider visiting our Autism Community or our Depression Community to connect with others and share your experiences. I manage the Autism community too so it would be great to see you on both!

Please come back and give us some updates on how everyone is doing. Good luck to you and your family.

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