Is there a name for what parents go through?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by threeturkeez, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. threeturkeez

    threeturkeez New Member

    We're there, my husband and I. Well, I guess I can't speak for him 100% but I can for me. Maybe you've been there before or are there now. When every little thing to accomplish feels like climbing a mountain. When an interaction with your difficult child makes you want to run from the house screaming "I CAN'T DO THIS ANYMORE!!!!" regardless of how minor it is. When even the small mishaps, accidents, or misbehaviors by the other children make you feel like your life couldn't get any worse. When the dog pacing after you makes you feel like you need to shoot the damn thing to get it to leave you alone. I'm there. And even though I know it won't make a bit of difference if this "state" has a name, identifying it might actually make me feel better. I'm not angry, I'm not resentful, I'm not sad, I just want a ****ing break from my life with this person and it's NEVER going to happen.
  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip


    Yeah, there IS a name for it... PTSD.

    FWIW - I am angry, resentful, and sad. I did not ask for this. NO ONE should have to live this way. But, clearly, many of us do it anyway...

    Right now, if my son comes downstairs one more time I'm going to explode. I've been home less than an hour, upstairs half of that, and he's been down here - 6 times.

  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    It is a totally sane reaction to a totally insane situation. It is also PTSD and anxiety.

    PLEASE talk to your doctor about this. MANY of us have needed to take medications to help us cope. If it hadn't been for prozac and xanax, there is NO way I would have 3 living children. in my opinion those saved more than my life, they saved my kids too. Your sig says you are on medications for depression, and that is a good thing, but you may need a medication tweak or to have the medications changed or to add a different medication.

    Part of being the mom that a difficult child needs is knowing when to take a break and when to get help. Is there ANY way that someone can take your kids for a day or two and you can get a break? You are not some appliance that the batteries can be replaced in. Stress can cause HUGE health problems. We have had Warrior Moms here who had strokes, heart attacks, and all sorts of other very very serious health problems. Then what happens to your kids? Who cares for them if you suddenly have a stroke or other problem and end up in the hospital for 2 weeks? Stress CAN and does do that to people.

    A therapist for YOU is also something you should find. You may not feel mad or sad or whatever now, or you may be stuffing those feelings to have them come out later. It is impossible to raise a difficult child with-o having it mess you up, in my opinion. A therapist can be a HUGE help if it is the right one. You may have to talk to several before you find one you feel comfortable with who has the tools to help you.

    I am so sorry you are going through this. PLEASE go to your doctor, to a psychiatrist if the doctor thinks it is needed, and to a therapist for YOU. While these may not be "for" difficult child or the other kids, it will benefit every aspect of their lives.
  4. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    Oh yes - there are plenty of us living in this "state"...whether you want to call it PTSD, or stress, or whatever...

    I think the biggest thing is just finding the time to GET OUT. Is there anyone who can watch the kids for you for a bit? At your home or theirs? I think we forget how important it is to step away from time to time - and sometimes we KNOW it's important, but just can't make it happen.

    I hope you can find some respite for yourself to rest and re-energize.
  5. threeturkeez

    threeturkeez New Member

    I recently was told about the term "caregiver burnout". Anyone heard of that? It kinda sounds like what I experience from time to time (ok, alot of the time). I am still on medications but I need to see my psychiatrist to see if there is anything I can take for immediate help if I have another moment where I feel like being hit by a truck and spending 2 months in the hospital would be a better alternative to living with my difficult child. Any suggestions on that either would be great.
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    "Caregiver burnout" is a specific type of stress disorder. It's not called "ptsd" because it isn't really a single event - it's the chronic, day-to-day grind. But... the net effect is the same.

    It was first coined, I believe, for people who were dealing with a spouse who has dementia. For those kinds of situations, there are often support networks, respite care, and other lovely things (sometimes, "if" you can afford it).

    When the care recipient is a difficult child... well, there aren't too many support networks (thanks to this board, we have ONE at least), and respite care is very hard to come by unless you have family who can step in.

    I know what you mean. husband tells me I'm less insane now, because difficult child is less insane and less intense, so I'm getting more than 4 hours of sleep a night. But... it's all "relative"... I'm still not exactly sane.
  7. Hopeless

    Hopeless ....Hopeful Now

    Yep I have it and my difficult child is an "adult". But every time my phone rings I get the old feelings rushing back and panic mode sets in. Even if the call is nothing major :(
  8. Methuselah

    Methuselah New Member

    I have it. I don't feel like myself. I'm angry and full of rage all the time. My goal is always to get through the next second of the day. I hate our situation and I hate the difficult children. If you had told me this is where I would be 13 years ago when we adopted them, I wouldn't have believed it. This isn't me. This has never been me. but it is now. And I don't like it.
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'm there with you, Brooke! I didn't realize it was in the category of PTSD ... I'm hoping it's more like caregiver burnout because to me, PTSD implies that it can strike at any time.
    Either way, I hear you!
  10. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I would venture to guess that to some degree, many of us on this board have whatever the name of this specific parental issue is. For me, after so many years of so much "caregiver burnout" the physiological outcome was 'adrenal fatigue' which is what happens to the body after it stays in the fight or flight syndrome consistently, which is what many of us cope with here.
    Here are some symptoms of adrenal fatigue:
    The 30 symptoms include, but are not limited to:
    1. Excessive fatigue and exhaustion, chronic fatigue
    2. Non-refreshing sleep
    3. Sleep disturbance, insomnia
    4. Feeling overwhelmed or unable to cope
    5. Craving salty and/or sweet foods
    6. Sensitivity to light
    7. Low stamina and slow to recover from exercise
    8. Slow to recover from injury or illness
    9. Difficulty concentrating, brain fog
    10. Poor digestion
    11. Irritable bowel syndrome, IBS
    12. Low immune function
    13. Premenstrual syndrome
    14. Menopause symptoms
    15. Low blood pressure
    16. Sensitivity to cold
    17. Fearfulness
    18. Allergies,
    19. Frequent influenza
    20. Arthritis
    21. Anxiety
    22. Irritability
    23. Depression
    24. Reduced memory
    25. Low libido, sexual drive or interest
    26. Lack of lust for life and/or food
    27. Excess hunger
    28. Low appetite
    29. Panic/anxiety attacks
    30. Irritability, impatience, quick to anger.
    If quick to anger, the person will often tend to back down quickly if confronted.

    My response to this was to change my diet,stay off of sugar, wheat, alcohol, dairy and processed food, increase exercise, sleep more, get into therapy again, learn about codependency issues pertaining to me, get as much support as possible, go to an acupuncturist on a regular basis for stress relief and anything else I could find to relieve that stress and change the pattern within me. The external issues may remain the same, however, my response to them shifted and I felt better. Best advice I can offer is do everything you can to support yourself, find places of comfort and relief, look for joy and laughter wherever you can find it, talk to a therapist or anyone who you feel comfortable with to release your frustrations and angers, exercise, eat well and take very, very good care of yourself on all levels. Hugs and best wishes for you to find peace and health in the midst of the stormy sea you find yourself in.
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Wow, thank you! Great list.
    Except that ... I have always had a sweet tooth ... but I'm pretty good at exercising ...:tantrumsmiley:
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I have to say, brain fog is my worst enemy right now. It's better now that I've attended my Dad's funeral, helped my sister clean and pack her house, and attended her husband's celebration of life, but I've still got a full plate.
    Shingles wasn't on the list, though ... lol.
  13. RE - Great list - I have a lot of those symptoms. I have days where putting one foot in front of the other is a good day.

    Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night hyperventilating and having a panic attack - in my sleep!

    I really need to follow your advice and change some things for me so I can get through this and not have a stroke or heart attack.
  14. BeachPeace

    BeachPeace Guest

    I wish there was a hotel for parents like us - no loud noises, free (since many of us cannot work), no kids allowed, very quiet and private where we could go to recharge.....sigh
  15. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    BeachPeace-what a wonderful idea!

    Yes, I think for me it is a sort of PTSD. I really do love BeachPeaces' idea!
  16. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    I haven't read the other posts but I can tell you 2 things. First, you are not alone (I know that doesn't help), and second, our therapist said that parents who have cronic sick kids (including mental health, nuerologic disorders and behavior disorders) often suffer from Post Traumatic Stress. My husband and I were actually treated for it while we went through a horrible stint with a state Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Please take care of yourself-stress will make you very ill. Can you get respite care for your boy?
  17. threeturkeez

    threeturkeez New Member

    Beach, the closest I can think of to match that and have it still be free is the hospital, hence my thoughts about being hit by a truck and spending two months there for recovery. Of course, it wouldn't be a great two months but it sure would be difficult child-free.
  18. threeturkeez

    threeturkeez New Member

    husband is in the navy and we were told the respite care program was really for families where the active duty member is deployed or TAD elsewhere, thereby creating a need for the other parent to get a break. Frankly, I think that's pretty stupid. My husband and I could DEFINITELY use a break. Our son is almost 13 and has been exhibiting behavior issues since before he turned 2 years old. It took until age 6 to get a diagnosis and it's been a whirlwind of Dxs, medications, specialists, and worsening behavior since. We've spent the night at a hotel when we were visiting his fam in OK and that one night was nice, but we are so backlogged on frustration that it didn't do much in the way of actual relaxation. We've both promised ourselves that if we win the lottery we are going to do whatever necessary to find a way for the two of us to spend a week away. Short of that, there isn't much we can do. The people willing to help us, his family, don't live near us. Some of them don't even believe all that we say goes on here. As for my family, my baby brother lives an hour away but has 3 young children with his wife who is in medical school. My sister lives about 3 hours away but her husband and I don't get along and they act like they don't really believe all that we say is happening. And then there's my mom and her husband. They live about an hour away but they act like babysitting a child overnight is a HUGE favor to ask someone, plus they too act like what we tell them is happening is just so unbelievable. Christmas of 2009 Dan was in the hospital with some serious medication reaction issues that led to chemically induced sedation from the hospital so his body could flush the medications. My husband and I both wanted to be with him in the hospital so we had asked my parents to either take the other 2 kids or come down to our home for a night or 2 and manage the kids for us when we needed to be at the hospital. They refused, said they just didn't have time for that. So my husband and I took 12-hour shifts at the hospital that's a 45-minute drive away; it was horrible. So no, they wouldn't watch our children so that husband and I could have a break. Sucks for sure.