Carers Christmas, Past and Present

Carers Christmas 2014, Past and Present.

20th December 2014

By Maureen & Family Carers

Carers Present
It’s now that time of year again when many unpaid family Carers dread, everyday Services are either over worked or understaffed and some services and support services are closed over the holiday period making this time of year a time of fear and despair.
For many Carers Christmas time is no different to any other day of the year, their caring role and the loved one they care for have the same needs over Christmas and New year as they do every day of the year, this is one of the things that can leave a carer isolated from the rest as they cannot leave the house or have any time for themselves, friends and relatives in many cases keep their distance because they do not understand what it is like, anyone can become a carer at any time without warning, it is only then you understand and believe the isolation and stress it brings.

Carers Past
When the caring ends because your loved one has passed away it doesn’t end the loneliness Christmas time can bring, the empty chair, the empty place at the table, but most of all missing your loved one and not hearing their voice, life is never quite the same, but, we have to keep ourselves going for our own sake and others around us, treasure the memories.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a manageable Christmas and New year, and my special thanks to the member of Chill4us carers that contributed their thoughts, I could not have done it without their help…………….below are some thoughts from Carers and past carers. Please take time to read this.
With my very best wishes for you to have a peaceful Christmas

Thoughts from our members
Christmas day is just the same as any other, as the caring have to carry on and often paid carers are in short supply with limited or no out of hours service, it can be very frightening.
Hubby’s needs will be the same on Christmas Day as on all other days. He is housebound due to many health issues and increasingly due to dementia. We have no family here so we’ll be on our own, again! There is no real conversation due to dementia so although TV and newspaper adverts suggest that the whole world is having a rather jolly time, the reality for many carers is quite the opposite.
As a family carer a loved ones illness changes the way you would like to celebrate. It still revolves around the usual routine, so no break that most look forward to.

In my case with 2 children and my parents living far away we can’t spend Christmas with family and due to the size of our house they can’t come to us. I feel very sad and angry sometimes that we miss out on family time and have done for a decade. My parents are in their 70’s now and I feel we missing out on precious time with the girls grand parents and them with us. The girls have missed so much time with them.
I know this is a selfish thing to be thinking of when I should be grateful with what I have.
Thinking as a past carer, Christmas is difficult when sometimes it feels wrong to be happy if the person you loved has passed on.
No matter how many times someone tells you, that your relative would want you to be happy, it will not take away the pain of loss.
Sometimes it leaves you feeling as if you would like to just sit alone in the corner until the festivities are all over.
Being a carer Christmas Day is no different from any other day except for the present you receive
Christmas is not the same since mum has slight Dementia, she is not interested anymore, I have to do all the Christians shopping, as it frightens her. It is a hard time, just another day.
like all other carers it is another day. Being Christmas or any holiday dosent make the caree less ill
Christmas to me is just the same as any other weekend, I will get my paid carers come in to look after my husband, and they are all lovely.
Christmas is the same as every other day for me. Just got my carer hours for Xmas and got care from people we really like.
Christmas itself will be fine – at home with hubby & 2 children/young adults.
Visiting relatives is a bit of a nightmare. Apparently it is easier for us to go to them as they don’t have time to visit us or bring MIL to visit us. However, being in someone else’s home or at restaurants is difficult – none of the adaptions we have at home such as handrails, ramps, supporting armchair etc are available meaning a lot harder work for my husband trying to cope & for me who ends up trying to lift & haul him & his wheelchair, toilet seat etc around. Consequently it takes days to recover from the 2 hour journey each way & all the extra ups & downs. My husband is left exhausted & unwell from the effort………..obviously it is a lot easier for us to go to them!
It is always difficult at Christmas to take flowers to our son’s grave, who died in his mid life, but it gives some comfort to us thinking that he has a gift.
He was not ill and died of a sudden stroke.
when one is working and caring it is very stressful and tiring getting everything done , as well as all the usual day to day caring duties.

Computers for Carers
If you are getting a new laptop computer for Christmas or have a used unwanted laptop or tablet you no longer need please consider donating it for an unpaid family at Computers4carers and open a window to the outside world.
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