Who has time to “get help”? Not me. I have to be working at a job I hate, working overtime and on weekends, just to attempt to cover the bills each month. I have to be monitoring my loved one…making sure the doctor visits are done, the prescriptions are filled, food is in the house, the light and water stays on, meals are prepared and the house is kept clean. With all that, who has time to seek counseling for caregivers?
Most days are a blur… constantly rushing from one point to the next, frequently wondering if I remembered to put on deodorant that morning. It’s like I’m stuck in a video that keeps looping.
It Will Catch Up On You
And then one day, it happened. An acquaintance of mine and I were having a conversation and we got to the “how’s life” part and I just totally broke down crying. Words were barely coming out of my mouth, the ugly cry kicked in and I remember feeling so embarrassed that I lost control and just emotionally collapsed in front of this person.
Thankfully, this acquaintance was quite understanding and patient. They allowed me to just cry and let it all out and then they actively listened to me and did their best to provide support. Lord knows I’m thankful for the reaction I got that day…no judgement.
What Led To This?
So how did I end up here…bawling my eyes out in front of someone? A couple of weeks before, I started to feel the stress coming on and as usual, I pushed it aside and just kept busy with work. As the days passed, I could start feeling the stress in my body in the form of aches and pains. I was constantly irritable and I just felt sad all the time. I was worried about my ability to be a good caregiver, I began doubting myself and I started to panic. Truth is, I really didn’t want the responsibility of being a caregiver, but had no choice. The stress and pressure from being given a responsibility that I was not ready for had gotten to me.
Was I aware of counselors/therapists? Sure. I often encouraged people to seek professional help. Did I know of anyone personally who offered these services? Sure, so I wouldn’t have to look far. In fact, I even knew of counseling being done online, so I wouldn’t even have to leave my house if I didn’t want to. But, I still didn’t go when I started noticing that I was stressed. Why?
I kept telling myself that I was fine, that I didn’t need to go to any therapist, that I couldn’t afford it and I definitely didn’t have the time for it. I told myself that I just needed to keep going…just push through and I’ll eventually feel better. Well, I was wrong. I ended up breaking down instead. Thankfully, it was not in a more public setting, like at work.
You Deserve To Get The Help You Need
Please do not wait like I did. Realizing that you need assistance is not a sign of weakness or an indication of failure. It just means you’re a human being, like the rest of us.
Make the time to get the help you need because the stress will eventually catch up with you and at that time, you won’t get to decide how it shows up in your life. You will just be left to deal with the consequences.
So, my friend, please consider speaking to someone about the challenges that you are facing. Everything is online now, so maybe that’s an option you can explore. There is BetterHelp, 7 Cups of Tea, Breakthrough, Amwell and Talkspace…just to name a few. Check them out and see which one is right for you.
I wish you good mental health, peace, prosperity and happiness. Please take care of yourself.