Does caregiving ever make you feel depressed or defeated?

My only son was diagnosed with schizophrenia. I battled a bad group home and a psychiatrist on tv. I had to move him to another state with my mother to get good mental health mother helps him at home to get to a center each day. I am looking for a job so I can stay with her. It will be hard to find one. I can see mother is tired. We have lots of bills when he was in the hospital. I have to work. My mother says its hard to think for two at times even though he is better.y job is working in a mursinghome and I stay tired from fighting for rights of mentally ill. I found myself thinking we would be better off if we died. I don’t like to feel like that. I need prayer. God carried me through my husbands suicide and I need help with this. I hate seeing my mother and son suffer. I hate seeing my residents suffer. Pray for me and I will pray for you.

@laurasvineyard I’m sorry to hear of what has been happening. You have been working so hard. I hope you’ll hang in there. Something will change for the better. I know it’s hard feeling like all sections of life are collapsing, it’s like spinning plates and it’s hard to keep them all spinning smoothly.

I admire your work in fighting for mental health rights and change. It’s a long hard battle to be won. Thank you for taking up the fight.

I’ve feeling very defeated today. Somedays I feel like it’s going to be Ok, and the road to recovery has some bumps and hiccups, but it’s not all bad.

But then there are weeks like this past one. It’s not been good. I’ve upset my brother and it’s been going a bit down hill this past week. My problems are nothing compared to struggles of others. But I’m still so bummed that things are going as rocky as they are.

I’m not sure if I should go home yet, or stay with my other brother for a few days and let everything simmer down. I really hate that feeling of not knowing what to do. I usually always have an idea of what move to make next. This past week everything I’ve tried to do to help my brother and look out for him, has made things worse. My confidence is very rattled.

The one thing I try so very hard to do is to:
never embarrass, argue with, or contradict my brother in public or in front of strangers. Well, I didn’t even manage to avoid that.

I’ll be casting a prayer to the ocean and the winds. I will cast one for all of us.

Hi Laurasvinyard, I have felt defeated and depressed many many times during the 4+ years since my son was diagnosed. I understand how despondent you can get because I’ve been there too.

Hang in there, things can and will get better. Prayers and positive thoughts going up for you and your family.

Jelly bean hug…

This is a common problem for many caregivers. Here is an article or two about it:

Take care of yourself. You can’t help anyone if you’re not taking care of yourself. Go see a doctor yourself if this problem persists. You are doing a lot of help and helping many people - you’re the kind of person that make this world a better place for all of us. If you’re depressed - you need help.

Thanks for the prayers. I will pray for you. I guess we just all get tired its hard to know the right thing to do at times . I am reading the information suggested. I guess I feel hopeless getting a job. I hate not helping mother with her tired. I want to be positive. I just have to travel. Someone is always there to lecture me on mother needing me. They don’t have a job for me. Ha! I am hanging on and praying for y’all too. .

As someone who’s suffered from schizophrenia for over 8 years–and as someone who’s lost a few friends and family members to caregiver burnout–the best advice I can give you is to take care of yourself first. You can’t be of much help to your son or mother if you’re depressed or exhausted.

You need to build up your energy reserves, positivity, optimism, and emotional strength before you attempt to help anyone. I should know. I used to be a psych nurse myself.

Early in my career, I had a year where I was just so burnt out on helping others. I was thinking about my patients even on my off days. And always worrying if they were getting what they needed. Ultimately, it started causing insomnia, depression, and anxiety. And, ironically, the work that I cared so much about began to suffer.

That’s when I knew, for my own survival, that I needed to get help for myself. That included treatment for depression and anxiety, as well as extensive therapy. I also did special things for myself, like taking a long walk, swimming, treating myself to a massage every now and then.

And you know what? Taking care of myself helped me to BETTER take care of my patients. It renewed my strength and commitment as a caregiver.

I urge you to take care of yourself, first and foremost. Go see your doctor and get help for your mind and body. I promise this will pay off.

Many Blessings,


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I am going to try to just go on interviews and put it in gods hands if I get another job… I took a nap today.i took a walk with my son. I feel a little better. I am not use to leaving my family in stress. I have to work. I am going to the doctor. I have always been the positive one. Thanks for y’all’s support.

I can`t improve on what anthony said. Best advice in the world–sometimes hard to remember or take the time for.
My son and I have been dealing with this for YEARS! Pretty much alone. There have been many times ( ok, millions of them! ) when I have had to just leave-literally. Tonight, my heart is breaking for my son who has come very far-but cannot break through to him. He pretty much blames everything on me. Hardheaded.
I admire you so much for being able to pick up and go to a place where your son will get better help. So much courage you have! Wonder if you can get some help at home from social services in your area?
Many prayers go out to youXX

I agree w/Anthony about taking care of oneself, but that’s hard too. However, I really try to do that. However I find it really hard to keep a smile on my face when I have to listen to my friends talk about the glowing accolades of their children knowing they will eventually ask about my son and I will try and put into words what I’ve been dealing with and I get that sorrowful pitying look that really bothers me. I know they care, but sometimes I wish I wasn’t the one being pitied. I know we all have our crosses to bear, but it’s rough. My boyfriend (of 10) years is ready to throw in the towel. He’s been a great help and support but says he’s done with it. I guess I feel like it’s easy to say when it’s not your child. Walk away. But I am very glad I found this site. Have read many posts that I can totally relate to. So thanks folks…

I don’t ever suggest anyone leave there children. I lost a boyfriend of four years after my sons breakdown. I don’t want any boyfriend under this stress.hes my son and I’d die for him but I don’t expect anyone else to. I wish I did not have to work but have to work. Made so many bills when he was in group home had to drive four hours to see him. I get tired of paying off debt. I would love to go to the beach. This illness took that financially. The situation makes you depressed.

My best friend asked me to go on a trip with her . I can’t go. I used all my gas money for interviews. She is upset I am sure. I am doing the best I can. People have no idea. This drains as bad as cancer. I do feel defeated but this too shall pass. I am going to be positive if it kills me. Thank god for this support. I know you had this happen. One day I will win the lottery and help parents of children with mental illness.

Jelly bean hug.
You deserve one.
Just because you don’t expect someone else to die for your son doesn’t mean they won’t want to. You can’t go looking for that sort of thing, if it happens it will just happen if it is going to happen.
I love C’s niece and nephew. They don’t have sz or anything like that but their grandparents (C’s parents) are taking care of them along with their mother (C’s sister) who is nuts. Not like us, the impossibly irresponsible nuts. I don’t like it. I don’t like it at all. I want my own house where we can all live together and I can take care of them. Ask them how school was. Help them with papers. Hug them when they get sad and never walk away from them. C’s Mother and Father have done their job raising C and his sisters. I don’t like that they have to raise their grandchildren too.
I don’t know if someone like that will show up for you, but why close the door?

I worked another week in Alabama. My mother said over the phone she needs me. She takes him to a center each day. I am depressed I am not there to help her. We agree we need the doctor we have. I just hate wearing down my mother. If I bring him back we go back to a doctor on tv. It’s cruel to have to make decisions like this. It’s enough to have a sick child.

Sending many Prayers to you and your family!

I have prayed and been worried a lot. I now have chest pains.going to doctor

Yes, my heart bleeds.