How have you managed the emotional toll of witnessing your loved one's decline

How have you dealt with the emotional toll of witnessing your loved one’s decline? I’m finding it increasingly difficult to cope with the grief and loss of my husband’s Parkinson’s progression. It’s terrible to see him whittle away every day, it’s like he’s a shell of the man I married.

I’m so sorry to hear about your husband’s progression with Parkinson’s. It must be incredibly difficult to go through. When my mother’s Alzheimer’s got worse, I found myself struggling to cope emotionally as well. It feels like you’re losing the person you love, just a little bit every day.

I completely understand what you’re going through. My sister battled cancer and it was extremely hard seeing her suffer through treatments and watching her health decline. One thing that helped me cope was talking to others who were in similar situations - it really helped to know that I wasn’t alone in my pain and grief. Many times, we talk to people we love, but they’ve never been through something similar and can say hurtful stuff without realizing it.

That’s a good point, LovingKindness. When my husband had a stroke, my friends were saying all kinds of things they thought were sweet, but really, it was painful to hear them. Finding other caregivers really helped me process my emotions and gave me a safe space to grieve and vent. I think it’s important to allow yourself to be sad and grieve. You want to process whatever you’re feeling because bottling it makes it worse.

Therapy really helps in understanding and navigating the complex emotions that come with taking care of a declining loved one. It was essential in enabling me to care for my mother while also caring for myself. I’d recommend exploring that option if you haven’t already. It can also be a lifesaver if you have young kids around who are also seeing their grandpa get worse.

I feel for you. Watching my best friend battle a chronic illness was heart-wrenching. I started meditating because anxiety was eating away at me. Focusing on the present moment and practicing gratitude helped me appreciate the moments we still shared and brought some semblance of peace.

I think it’s really important to remember to give yourself time to grieve and be emotionally present with your feelings during this time. Grief is not linear, and you don’t want to force yourself to move on or pretend like everything’s ok.

Don’t be afraid to lean on friends and family for support. It can be incredibly helpful just to talk openly about what you’re going through and to have someone listen and empathize.

Thank you all for sharing your experiences and providing some guidance. I’ve been going through something similar with my father’s Alzheimer’s progression, and it’s been an emotional rollercoaster. It’s comforting to know I’m not alone in these struggles and that there are ways to cope and seek support. Taking the time to grieve and explore therapy options may be excellent ways for me to navigate this journey. I hope you all continue to find strength in your caregiving roles and remember to take care of yourselves as well.

It’s so challenging! I’m so exhausted. There is so much guilt. I’m just tired.