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I'm going through the angry phase. I know it is not a healthy emotion and am trying my best to work it out.

 

I'm sad for my mom, who is my dad's caregiver and has to go through all this.

 

I hate when people ask me how my dad is doing but don't know how to handle the response and ALWAYS say something stupid like it will make me a stronger person or how lucky he survived and something about God bla bla. I'm about to tell people to stop asking me and saying those things. I know they mean well, but what do they know?

On the other hand, I also hate it when people seem to ignore that fact and expect me to be like before.

 

Please, tell me I'm going to stop being angry.

 

 

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Hi and :welcome: to the many phases we go through whether we are the Caregiver or the Stroke Survivor. I'm sure you know there are different phases, stages, we go through. You are in the "Angry" one. I am a Brain Stem Stroke Survivor, November 2003, and I have experienced two TIA's, 12/31/06 and then back to back on 1/1/07. My Hubby is my Caregiver.

No, it's not fair, and it's not been an easy time on either one of us.

I am truly sorry you are having to experience this part of life.

 

When individuals get married they take a vow of "For better or worse in sickness and in health till death due us part". In my case, my hubby is taking his vows seriously. It seems as though your Mom is as well. I don't know your situation. No, it's not fair... but these are the cards that were dealt to us, either we play them our or we fold, for us, we are playing them out.

 

The "Civilians" as I call them, mean well when they ask me "How are you doing".... blah, blah, but, it does upset me when they don't have the courtesy and say and how is Wayne.

He is the other half of our team.

Sometimes, I think people see you and just don't know what to say so they just say anything that pops in their head.

 

Your Dad and his family are on a Stroke Survivor journey. In that journey are going to be ups and downs, twists and turns. There is life after stroke. It isn't the same life as before his strokes, however, there is life. Just keep the Hope alive.

 

I have also found being positive truly helps any situation.

 

I am so happy you are part of this site. There are young members that I am sure will be able to connect with you as you are in their age bracket.

 

Please feel free to come and share your feelings any time you need to. We are here for you.

Have you thought of speaking to a counselor about your feelings? Maybe they would be able to help you. We are not Professionals here. We only share our experience, strength and hope with one another.

 

The only hope I can leave with you is this. I was in a coma and on life support after my Brain Stem Stroke hit me during open heart surgery. When I came out of the coma, it ended up I was one hundred per cent paralyzed. My hubby was told I would be in a vegetative state and have to live in a nursing home for the rest of my life. Well, here I am today, I was told I would never walk,talk, etc. ...... I am typing this to you, I can walk short distances with my rollaider, I was in a wheelchair 24/7. I can talk, so much recovery. BUT, it will be six years for me this November.

It all takes time. But, I will never give up. Hang in there. Just take it one day at a time. There have been many days I have had to take it a second at a time.

 

I hope this has helped you. I have spoken from my heart.

 

:friends: Believe in miracles and soar

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Yes, words of wisdom from Jan. I concur, this is but part of the journey. Unfortunately, people do not know how to handle stroke victims and caregivers. They really have no idea what is going on. They are clueless. I am afraid that I was one of them before this happened to my husband. I really did not understand how difficult it is for everybody. Now, I really now. Unfortunately empathy is not something you can experience without actually going through it.

People do mean well. They just don't know. Perhaps this is an opportunity to teach some of them what a stroke is all about. I know some people will not want to know and some may be amazed by what you can share with them.

This is just part of the journey. It will pass.

I am sorry that you are going through this right now. But, things always change. Understanding on everybody's part is essential to getting on with life.

Ruth

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The quick way to deal with questions or comments of that nature is let it go in one ear, out the other. Some things said you have to act like you didn't hear them. For all other questions I say, "About like usual." What ever that means!

 

You are new at this but in time you will have it all down and the anger will disappear like it did in me. You have love in your heart cause you use that word in your screen name! Just my observations!! Take care and smile or read one of the many humor jokes I see posted!

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Dear Soo,

 

I wish so many times there was some magic way to get out of being angry...there doesn't seem to be though. Changing our own attitude takes hard work. Let me share with you the way I use to tackle this troubling emotion. It's a method I've learned from others who have found it helpful.

 

First of all though, let's take a look at anger toward those who ask how our loved one is and when we tell them their reply is irritating. I've found myself it that situation too. I believe people do want to say something they think would comfort us. The fact it doesn't comfort us is really not their fault. So, the way I try to view it is in just that way. Their intent is not to hurt me, but to comfort me. Then, if I find it hasn't been helpful I try to let it go.

 

The other thing is that if our friends or the friends of our stroke survivor have never been in our situation we just can't expect them to understand what we are going through. They are only trying to help - even when it doesn't help at all.

 

Now, my key for ridding myself of anger. Gratitude. I was once instructed to write a list of 10 things I'm thankful for each morning. At the time I couldn't imagine I was thankful for two things, let alone 10. I tried though. I thought of things that make my life easier...even the shower or washing machine or that I woke up...anything. After a time I could name 10 things I was thankful for that had more substance. It seemed it wasn't so much what I was thankful for, rather it was the act of gratitude that slowly changed my attitude.

 

I've been asked many times how I keep my smile, why I have a positive attitude after caring for my suvivor husband (of almost five years) in spite of his deteriorating condition. The key for me, Soo, is that I imagine that any experience I have can be used to help another. I don't remember when I was able to see this journey in that light. I know it wasn't immediately.

 

Every day is not easy. Every experience is not a happy one. However, the strength I gain going through those experiences can, I hope, be used to help another who will take this journey.

 

Warmly,

 

Ann Rogers

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hi Soo:

 

I agree with Ann & Jane completly. I just want to tell you don't project too far in future. your dad's condition will improve a lot nothing is constant. only change is constant. I suffered stroke at age 34 which left me paralysed on my left side. the first 2 years were the hardest specially first 6-12 months were make-or break period. There were so many changes at all levels of our life. I never knew whether we will make it or not. but I am here to tell you we did make it. My Stroke was just bump in my life's journey. There IS still good life after stroke it's just little different.

 

Asha

 

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First I love your name.....

 

Angry? Oh yeah it can take place and a lot of resentment. I am happy that people still talk to you about the situation. I imagine it is awkward for them and they don't know how to approach any family member who has a stroke. I , at least, sold myself that as I lost many a friend I thought I had. The true firends had an open conversation with me and it was hard saying...this sucks.....

Your mom is courageous as a caregiver and is one of the most hardest jobs. What is hardest for a spouse that I have seen is family members telling them...That is not my mom or that is not my dad.....I have seen that happen.

 

You are a brave person to face this situation and just by getting something out there to strokenet is part of the healing process. Who else knows but survivors caregivers and family......

 

Now off the subject, I would like to know the guinea pigs names. Just courious....Ok will trade, my last pigs name was "squeeky".....Now...Stop laughing Fred

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Hi Soo,

 

Stroke survival and caregiving is definitely not for the faint of heart. Your anger is quite expected at this point. Stroke stinks!!!! We can turn the experience around by teaching others about stroke. I feel that if I can help even one person prevent a stroke then that's one less person who has their life turned upside down.

 

When you get frustrated, know that you can come here as we understand. Hope the days get better for you.

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Thank you, thank you everyone for the sincere replies.

 

I know that from my post it seems like I'm complaining, but I'm not and couldn't, as I'm not the main caregiver and my mom who takes care of my dad and the bussiness does not ever complain. Tonight I was talking on the phone with her and as always I asked her if she was tired and stressed about the situation. She told me to stop asking that and that it made her angry because she didn't think about it and accepted the situation.

Despite that, I know it hard for her and I feel guilty as I can't be there with them.

It is hard to admit that stroke stinks. I guess it is because it's socially unacceptable to admit your weaknesses.

 

When my father stroked, I took a week off from work and when I returned people were concerned and wanted to know about stroke, so I made a brief document from reliable sources about it and handed to several of them. Some of them are trying to lead a healthier lifestyle. :-)

 

I do a list of 5 things I'm grateful for often and I still have more than 5 things. Tonight's list would be something like this:

+ My father, who isn't giving up and has made progress.

+ My mom, for being strong and optimistic. I would be a mess if it weren't for her.

+ My friends, for being real friends.

+ The guy I'm seeing, because he's very cute and for being who he is.

+ My pets: Nina the Cat, who liked to nap on my dad's chest and purr and she makes him smile. Whoever said that cats weren't loyal was very wrong. Tobias and Tubi: the pigs. They make my mom laugh. We have 2 tortoises but they're not very socialble :p

 

Then, I have more things to be grateful for, but I think it's wonderful that the top 5 is of people/pets.

 

cdewald, my pigs are: Tobias (AKA Toto) and Tubi

 

2363724415_39ae82c540_m.jpg

 

Toto is the round one and Tubi is the small one. I love them so much!

 

 

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Hi Ya Guinea Pigs:

 

I have compared your first post with the one above. I have seen a remarkable difference in a serious attempt to understand. Your listing items that were a concern to you was a fabulous idea. I hope you make your way back among us and discuss things that pass your way. You shall always have many answers from all of us. Many deal with things on a different plain so you can shuffle through them and see which one fits you best. We all are different in this world. I am very different.

Cute little pig a roo's. The names fit the pictures for sure. Thanks for sharing a part of your life. I now have one cattle dog, one border collie, one mainecoon and one tabby. Plus I have trained 2 squirrels on my porch and am attempting one chipmunk. The chipmunk is the scariest. Hahahha Reminds me of someone in strokenet.

 

Please come back, we don't bite and if we do...we have had rabies shots...

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Hi: I'm a caregiver of my husband for the last 5 months. I use to say when asked, "How's Ernie doing? i'd say, well, gee, he's paralyzed, cannot speak, or walk, but other than that we're holding our own. Then I got over that phase, went on to "as good as can be expected"....now it's he's doing great, walked 50 feet today with a hemi walker and me hanging onto his gait belt, said 6 new words and slept through the night! Things improve, slowly, but it will go in the right direction. Just hang in there. I know it's not easy to do, believe me I know, but what's the alternative?? Take care, and keep posting....it helps!

Sara

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Stroke stinks that's for sure! All of us here would be saying 'AMEN' to that I'm sure. It's also very frustrating. For us as survivors and for caregivers as well. I have my days that I still feel anger about my stroke. My stroke happened June 08. But, I try so hard not to dwell on it so much now. It's part of my past. I'm still learning to deal with it. So glad you put the pictures of your guinea pigs in your post. How cute are they! Thanks for sharing that with us.

 

 

cuzlin

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Stroke stinks that's for sure! All of us here would be saying 'AMEN' to that I'm sure. It's also very frustrating. For us as survivors and for caregivers as well. I have my days that I still feel anger about my stroke. My stroke happened June 08. But, I try so hard not to dwell on it so much now. It's part of my past. I'm still learning to deal with it. So glad you put the pictures of your guinea pigs in your post. How cute are they! Thanks for sharing that with us.

 

 

cuzlin

 

I HAD MY STROKE IN 2003,I HAVE NO USE OF MY LEFT SIDE. I ALSO HAVE TROUBLE DEALING WITH THIS. I ALSO DO NOT THINK MY SON UNDERSTANDS THE CHANGES I HAVE WENT THROUGH. WHEN WE DO GO AND VISIT HIM, HE WILL SAY THING LIKE MOM GET DOWN ON THE FLOOR AND PLAY WITH THE KIDS. BUT I CANNOT DO THAT. I WOULD LOVE TO DO IT. SO MY HUSBAND WHO IS A GREAT CAREGIVER WROTE A LETTER TO MY SON AND DAUGHTER TITLED LIFE WITH MOM. HE TALKS ABOUT WHAT OUR LIFE IS LIKE EVERYDAY. I ALSO GET FRUSTATED ALOT. I HAVE NOT GOT TO THE ANGRY PART I AM STILL AT HOW DO I ACCEPT THIS AND WHY ME. MJ

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Thank you for sharing everyone.

I just got back from visiting my parents. My mom had a car accident on Saturday morning when our car was hit by a drunk person. The car was almost totaled but she and the driver are ok (she only has a swollen knee). When she called to tell me what had happened me she was very calm and more worried about me and my dad than herself. When people learned about it they said what a bad luck she has lately, but when she came back she was smiling and said how lucky she is for being ok. So yes, it's all about the attitude.

I'm so blessed for having a mom like mine.

 

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So glad to hear the your Mom is ok after the accident!

 

 

cuzlin

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Well it sounds like you and your mom are learning to deal the the ups and downs of stroke life. :dribble: That is indeed what brings all of us here to this great cyer world. :chat: To tell our story and help others and be helped from what we've learned through our own expereinces. :hug: As a caregiver I know first handedly that there will be good and bad days. We need to have spiritual guidance to get through even the hardest moments. I know because I reach for Gods hand daily and ask for patience, guidance, and strength. :juggle:

 

I was glad to hear that your mom wasn't hurt more then she was during the car accident. Drunk drivers make me so angry! :Tantrum: They put so many lives at stake

 

My daughteer Rachel had her stroke 3 1/2 years ago. She was 22 at the time. We've had to make many adjustments but we keep pushing forward. I will pray your family will do the same. :hug:

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Glad to hear your Mom wasn't seriously injured in the accident. Hope the drunk driver had insurance AND will charged accordingly.

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What a Blessing your Mom wasn't hurt in the car accident, Immediately I thought of: "Jesus, Take The Wheel" the song that Cary Underwood sang.... There have been a few times that Wayne or a friend would have to drive me to a Dr's appt. or to the store and someone almost hit us and I would start thinking of that song when we swerved outta the way.... there was hardly a split second to make sure the lane was ok to swerve into. I tell you, some of these people shouldn't be on the roads. NO excuse for Drunk Driving.... They need to be put into jail.

 

I am keeping you and your family in my prayers.

 

Please keep us posted on how things are going.

 

:forgive_me?: flowers for your Mom

 

:forgive_me?: flowers for you

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So, I guess I'm transiting the depression phase now, I think that was the next one.

 

I thought I was better but like every next day I return from home, my feelings get mixed up and I get weepy. Also, I'm having some pressure from work, so today when my boss jokingly asked if I was angry as I was frowning, I cried in front of him. I told him it was not related to work, he understood and said he was sorry for asking and making me cry.

 

On my way back, I took a cab and when the driver noticed I was crying, he proceeded to tell me his story about his ex who cheated on him and got pregnat by her lover and how heartbroken he was at first but now he was ok and ready for a new woman. :wacko:

 

I feel bad for crying publicly. I read your posts and I'm amazed at how strong you all are, though I know you have bad days, too. Then, I feel strupid for being so weak and a cry baby.

 

:forgive_me?: to you too jjohnson and wishing and praying that your daughter Rachel gets better soon, lisas.

Hugs to everyone on this forum. Thank you for letting me vent.

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HI AND I AM SO GLAD MOM WASN'T HURT IN THE ACCIDENT. I HAVE 0 TOLERANCE FOR DRUNK DRIVERS. I HOPE HE IS PUNISHED ACCORDINGLY. ITS OK TO VENT WE ALL NEED TO DO THAT FROM TIME TO TIME AND WE ARE HERE TO LISTEN AND UNDERSTAND. DEALING WITH A STROKE FROM ANY PERSPECTIVE IS HARD. YOU AND YOUR MOTHER ARE TO BE BLESSED FOR ALL YOU DO TO HELP YOUR DAD. CAREGIVERS ARE OUR ANGELS HERE ON EARTH. GETTING YOU FEELINGS OUT WILL HELP YOU TO COPE. IT DOES GET BETTER IN TIME. I STILL HAVE MY DAYS OF TEARS, ITS BEEN 7YEARS NOW. I GET FRUSTRATED MORE THAN ANYTHING AND I START TO CRY BUT IT PASSES QUICKLY. I HAVE ACCEPTED MY STROKE AND NOW MORE FORWARD AS BEST I CAN. WHICH YOU WILL TOO IN TIME. ITS ALWAYS HARD TO SEE OUR PARENTS GET ILL. THE ANGER WILL FADE AWAY IN TIME TOO. I KNOW EVERYTHING TAKES TIME, WHEN THE STROKE HAPPENED IN SECONDS, DOESN'T SEEM FAIR HUH. YOUR DAD IS STILL HERE FOR A REASON, SO FOCUS ON THAT MORE TO END YOUR SADNESS. REMEMBER DAD IS STILL DAD JUST IN A DIFFERENT WAY NOW. I WISH YOU HAPPIER DAYS AHEAD AND WE ARE HERE ANYTIME YOU NEED US. (((((HUGS )))) TO YOU AND MOM WELCOME TO THE SITE TOO. YOU FOUND A GREAT PLACE TO COME TO.

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Hi Guinea Pigs,

 

I am a stroke survivor but I appaled you on your efforts and out look on life. You have to have a positive additude!! You also have a lot of support it souds like. Keep up with that.

 

Bruce Schwentker

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:Tantrum: :ranting:

 

I have only been a caregiver for two months, I don't have to do some of the horror-story tasks like lifting my mother into the bathtub, cleaning her after bowel movements or spoon-feeding her three meals a day in one side of her mouth. She can walk, she can talk, and she can make me wish that my recent cold was in fact swine flu with some of the guilt trips she lays and the invidious comparisons she makes with her friends (whose kids keep the home spotless...) . When the fever hit 101.6, I was hoping for 102 or 103. I have a job that requires me to spend 16 hours/week out of the house and on the road, and on my way back she calls me 4-6 times -- "I'M WORRIED ABOUT YOU!" Never mind that if I answered when she called, I could run my car into a ditch or get killed in a hundred interesting ways by the trucks and lunatic drivers on a rain-sodden expressway. I'm also falling behind with my work, since most days the caregiving lasts until 7 pm; chances are good that I will lose my job in December for underperformance.

 

Today was an exception -- apparently I said "I can't breathe!" in my sleep and that scared her into letting me work somewhat unmolested today. Continually threatening my own death, however, is probably not a strategy conducive to my sanity or her recovery. Anyway, the guilt-tripping resumed at 6 pm.

 

She has also taken a liking to my church -- I should be happy but this means that the 2-3 hours each week I have to myself that are not on an expressway have disappeared.

 

I need to find someone to sit with her, but between work and taking care of her I forget until after the office is closed. She's quite pleasant and witty to her friends and nurses, so that's not too much of a fear.

 

It got to the point where I was wishing my persistent cough (5 weeks) were something like pneumonia or cancer, that way I could be left alone. Then she goes on about how terrible it would be to be alone; there is nothing that I crave now more that a few hours or days alone, perhaps with the cats.

 

There is only one family member left, and he lives 700+ miles away. I'm not a patient man -- I know that lots of what is driving me mad is the stroke and probably distressing her as much as it is distressing me. I am starting to understand just why some parents get left in a nursing home and never visited, and that scares me.

 

Rant over.

 

 

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Anger is a phase of grief but scary enough, some people never leave this phase. It is up to you to move past it. Anger is completely normal and expected. Forget all the stuff about God or how atleast he survived. You dont need that right now. What you have to do is take one day at a time and stop worrying about the future. A positive/negative attitude is what is going to make this recovery great or horrible, so this is a really important time to keep your head up and stay positive. As hard as it may seem, it is what works.

 

Dont be embarassed to ask for anti-depressants either. Many caregivers are in the same position!

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Being a caregiver is not a lot of fun especially when the person you are caring for is full-on and you are tired all the time. Please caregivers, find a way to give yourself a break from time to time, the more you build yourself back up the easier it will be to go on caring.

 

Sometimes we need to acknowedge that there is more than normal caring involved especially if the stroke has triggered mental health issues so make sure your doctor knows what is really going on and can give the care recipient appropriate medication. Trouble is too often we don't tell the GP they are driving us mad, we are angry too much of the time to be normal and that we are overtired. The GP needs to know EXACTLY how it is for us as caregivers as all stroke survivors are different and so degree of difficulty in looking after them differs too.

 

And caregivers, come to chat if you can, every little bit of support and understanding helps. No-one need be angry all the time or feel alone and unsupported.

 

Sue.

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This morning I quit the job, effective December 31. My dream of a Ph. D. by 2011 has gone down the tubes, and I'm convinced that I'm making a grave error yet consoled that every life change I've made has felt like a grave error, so that means nothing. I'll be moving back to her house, which fills me with dread, though less dread than the status quo. The level of anger is down, now that it looks like I'll have occasional snatches of rest and peace.

 

Being that this is the United States, I hope that I'm eligible for some sort of health insurance like COBRA after December 31, but that does not seem likely. The situation is compounded by the fact that I was diagnosed with depression (moderate major depressive syndrome) in 1993 and two of the four episodes I've gone through were triggered by family crises in which Mom played a huge part. (Suicide is not an option -- why kill myself when I can sell my car and hop a bus or train anywhere in the country?) I'm under medication, but the bloody insurance comes into play again.

 

So now I'm worried about how I'll manage the budget and manage to scrape together enough money working from home to pay my credit-card bills and my insurance. Oh well, one day at a time, and if that's too broad, one hour at a time.

 

 

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