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Carers UK Week

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by plum, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    As many of you know I'm a carer (caregiver) and can attest to how unsupported we are in the main. Not simply by government and the NHS/doctors/medical establishment but also by friends, families and the world in general.

    This week is Carer's Week in the UK and one of the aims is to elicit more awareness and support within communities. Pretty much all of the stuff we do goes unnoticed and yet we are the backbone of care for our elderly, disabled, and sick. I'm guessing many people here know someone who provides this invaluable role but I doubt you realise just how much they give and do.

    It is fertile ground for tms. So please visit the link and show some support. It doesn't matter if you are UK based or not. This is a global issue and one that may touch your life in the future if it doesn't already.

    http://carersuk-news.org/74C-49TMK-B8N54M8J6C/cr.aspx (Carers Week is here!)

    Ellen, yb44 and mike2014 like this.
  2. mike2014

    mike2014 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hey My Friend,

    A very important post, Plum. Thank you for sharing.

    It does make me sad that Carers aren't valued or supported in this way. They play such an integral and pivotal role in physical and emotional support.

    In my eyes, a Carer is equally as important as a good Dr. A Dr, at most will spend 15 minutes, but the Carer will support you long after, both emotionally and physically.

    Best regards,
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2016
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  3. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    God Bless You Mike.

    I greatly appreciate your support and hope you realise how much it matters. A kind word can lift the spirits in a way that feeds into the care we give so two lives can be immeasurably improved.

    You have my heartfelt thanks for being such an angel.


    Plum x
    mike2014 likes this.
  4. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Oh dear, this is such an emotive topic for me. I became a carer last year suddenly, without warning. One day I woke up and found I was a paid up member of a club I never asked to join. Everyone's caring experiences are different and mine are not that onerous. The person I care for does not require round the clock help from me or others but the commitment is still there. Yes, it most certainly is "fertile ground for TMS." Some of my symptoms have returned mainly in the form of pain moving around.

    I'm due for my carer's check-up with the GP tomorrow. 15 minute appointment? Nah, lucky to get 7. The last time I went to the GP he spent the entire session asking about the person I care for even though she's not even a patient at that particular practice. He didn't even bother to take my blood pressure. I didn't feel particularly cared for then but I wasn't exactly assertive.

    I'm in the process of drawing up a contingency plan to be held by adult social services in the event of an emergency. This is a list of people who will help out if I am ill or in hospital. I managed to find only two people willing to do this despite it being completely hypothetical. I'm pretty hardy despite all the TMS symptoms. Still it's a niggling worry in the back of my mind. I'll be glad when the plan is done and stuck in a file so I don't have to think about it anymore.

    Thanks for bringing this up, Plum.
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  5. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Fertile ground for TMS indeed. I have been fortunate to not have to be a carer except for a short period when my mother was ill. But I know how difficult it must be and truly applaud all of you who do it. I'm overwhelmed by trying to take care of myself at times, and found motherhood of a very easy child incredibly taxing. So I know caring for someone who is ill or disabled for a long time would definitely be very stressful.

    Thanks for raising the topic, Plum.
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  6. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle


    Thanks for that. I had a pretty similar experience in that I never saw this coming but then what on earth could prepare anyone for this?

    When someone you love is rendered so vulnerable they need care, there are some exquisite moments where your heart floods with compassion and you see them settled and smiling. All of that is lovely. But all the rest, not so much.

    I particularly marvel at the way carers acquire some kind of invisibility as the experience with your doctor suggests. And the way a variant of the law 'if you want something doing ask a busy person' becomes 'if you want someone to care or help you ask a carer'. Yes, I've been through a masterclass in boundary setting.

    I like very much the heads up that Carers Week provides. I doubt it will change much because cynically I don't think most people care. They're just glad it's not them!

    I wish you well with this. After 8 years in the saddle I think my best advice is make sure you carve time out for yourself. We all need the respite even if it's a couple of hours while they're tucked up in bed. And for anyone who is not a carer but knows someone who is, you wouldn't believe how much it helps to have it acknowledged. A hug, a text, an email...it doesn't have to be a big deal. Most of us make the sacrifice willingly but when other people take it for granted, it can cause resentment. A little bit of awareness goes a long way.
  7. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Ellen, you're a gem. Your support is a touchstone for me and I am deeply grateful for it.

    The weird thing is how caring becomes a crucible for all manner of things within yourself, in your relationship with the cared-for, and within the cultural psyche.
    You can no longer defer thoughts circling death for example, and I suspect the distancing a lot of people put between someone who is ill/disabled and themselves is as much because it gives them the heebie-jeebies, as it is an avoidance of getting their hands dirty.

    I don't blame people for bailing out but I do seriously question their maturity. I have a hunch this has a lot to do with living in cultures that are youth-obsessed. It has to force certain grim realities into the shadow.

    I'm doing my best to embrace "Full Catastrophe Living". I love Jon Kabat-Zinn.

    Hugs my sweet xxx
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