“I am a co-care taker to my husband’s older sister. She is widowed, has no children, and can not live alone. Like most Americans, assisted living is not an option because of the astronomical cost factor that we can not help to pay.
Therefore, my husband and I took her into our home, a 70-year-old woman with stage 5 kidney disease. In doing so, there have been numerous challenges, two ambulance rides to the emergency room, housekeeping, laundry, learning about and cooking kidney friendly meals with low potassium not too much protein, helping with mobility when needed, taking her vitals, transportation to appointments and arrange for dialysis, administering medication, being a companion, showing support and even encouraging words.
This may sound like an assisted living center, but it’s our home and we take care of her better than any assisted living or nursing home can. The real challenge has been dealing with her emotional angry outbursts as she today shared with me that she is agitated by her life as it is today. A woman that was independent has now become co-dependent on her brother and me for everything. The emotions she feels can’t be understood by anyone, because we have not walked in her shoes.
My advice to other caregivers: have lots of patience.”
– A Patient Sister-in-Law
We want to hear your story! Why? Because your story matters. Have you ever listened to someone talk about their life and thought ‘Oh, someone else has been through that, too? I thought it was just me!’ Every story shared is a chance to aid another caregiver and help them feel less alone.
We hope this information is helpful to you in the important work you do as a family caregiver.
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