This subject can affect the whole family with consequences everlasting. My son was a caregiver to his wife for twenty years, working a full-time job, took on the responsibility of being a full-time parent (soccer mom), only it was dance classes, gym and Girl Scouts that their child enjoyed.
As time passed the level of care required increased, but he refused most help, he was determined to do it all. His job, the last 14 years was stressful, at times it required working double shifts, but he loved that job.
For the last three years, it became difficult to overcome the mental and physical exhaustion. He started slowly to depend on liquor to get him through the week. He tried AA, depressed, his work advised that he get mental health help, but despite his best efforts, he could not deal with the fact that even with those years of care, his wife’s condition was deteriorating. There was no hope no matter how much care and effort he gave that she would ever get better.
After Christmas the worse happened, he was drinking, mad at the world, shouting threats, scared his family, the police were called, he made threats to them, now truly burned out and broken, and in jail for six weeks. He now is in an Adult Rehabilitation Center and we pray, on his way to recovery, but his job is gone, and his family left in disrepair. Be careful caregivers, you must also take care of yourself.