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Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 2:25 AM
Joined: 7/1/2019
Posts: 25

Sometimes I wonder if there is anyone out there as alone as I will be soon.  I'm 55 years old, never married and no children.  I wanted a family of my own when I was younger but it just didn't happen.  My father passed away from cancer over twenty years ago.  That was devastating as we were very close.  My mother has vascular dementia. She's 83.  I sold my  home five years ago and moved in with her to be her full-time caregiver.  It has  become more difficult to care for her in the last year sadly.  I have MS which adds to the overall challenge we face. 

During my darker moments, I keep thinking about how lonely, scared and vulnerable I'm going to feel if she goes before I do.  Friends that I had when I was younger have all gone by the wayside.  They married and had children of their own.  We don't know our neighbors very well and have not met anyone in town.  I'm homebound now due to MS issues and wouldn't be able to leave the house anyway because my mom can't be left here on her own.

I guess I'm just wondering how disabled people manage when they are left completely alone in the world.  Sorry for such a depressing post but I'm trying to figure out how one continues on when there is little hope for much of a future.

Posted: Tuesday, November 5, 2019 10:52 PM
Joined: 9/8/2017
Posts: 2329

Hi Donna.  Your story worries me very much.  For me, I wouldn't want to go on caring for anyone if I am to have health concerns of my own.  I have already mentioned to family and friends that's where I draw the line.  Not for the reason that I have to look after myself, but for the reason of being incapable to care for my father.  
I wouldn't care for him if he had broken bones either.  It would be impossible to turn a bed bound person without the person feeling pain.  The job would be 10x harder.

I'm not familiar with vascular dementia and unaware of the progression and stages.  And for how long.  

I cannot imagine how you feel and I don't see how you wouldn't feel alone.  For me, although I do prefer to be a loner, I'm usually surrounded by people whether I want to be or not.  But, that gives me motivation and energy to keep on moving forward.  Without company, I think I would feel like you.

For anger issues and frustration with my father at I time I was dreading the progression of his disease and just dreading him, I gave myself two choices: anger management classes or join a local support group. I ended up joining a local South Baptist Alz. support group, even though I'm not Baptist.  They are the greatest group of folks.  Most of them are seniors and I think I'm the only mid-age person that meets with the group often.  Sometimes we don't even talk about dementia.  Just being with folks even if I don't quite fit in but I join them anyway and they're friendly helps me.  First day they met me I announced, "I'm angry!"  One lady didn't like hearing that, so I told her again several more times.  She finally understood after she got to know me a bit more and by me offering her rides to her house after meetings.  She used to walk to the meetings.

I don't think you should continue closing yourself in.  Find a way to meet with people.  Maybe even start a local support group of your own.  You never know what you might start and how many others are feeling alone too.

I hope to see more of you here and let us know how you and your mom are doing.