Through the eyes of a carer for someone with a mental illness

Caring, how it affects me.

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Sitting here after a long and tiring day, listening to the gentle sounds of Cora’s breathing combined with the exact opposite of that that is, Chris snoring, the little hum of the computer and ‘I’m A Celebrity’ on the television. My eyes are heavy and my head is spinning with things I need to get done, have already done, worries and fears. Tiredness is starting to consume me and my bed was calling me back more or less from the moment I pulled myself out of it this morning.

The past couple of weeks have been increasingly difficult for me; Chris has been struggling after an unexpected meeting of the person who caused him a lot of trauma in his childhood, he has been getting worse and over the last week has entered a period of crisis. As always our mental health services couldn’t organise a piss up in a brewery let alone get Crisis care right or at the moment in place at all. I am getting fed up of hearing the line ‘The home treatment team would probably not take you on because you have BPD and it’s an ongoing problem of which you need to learn to manage with your usual services’ or words to that effect. I wrote a letter to Chris Social Worker yesterday outlining my reasons on exactly why I didn’t agree with his current thoughts, feelings; presentation being ‘ongoing’ and that he was in a period of Crisis caused by xyz. So far it would appear it has fallen on deaf ears, because they don’t appear to be listening as they haven’t acted on anything I had said. I will see about adding the letter in a future blog for you all to read.

At the moment I am dealing with lack of sleep which then leads to problems in me remembering things, makes me grumpy, more stressed and my eyes would give a panda a run for its money. Also must admit eating is hit and miss, I am eating mainly on the go, all the wrong things and keeping my sugar intake high to help me stay alert while I am so tired. I feel like I am juggling twenty things at once all of the time and at any one point someone comes along and causes me to drop one, smashes it to bits and then adds all the pieces onto the juggling pile. Chris is difficult while in Crisis, he isn’t always communicating with me choosing to almost expect me to be reading his mind and getting upset when I just haven’t a clue what it is I am meant to understand. He also is walking around often almost half asleep, he is suicidal with periods of actively seeking ways he could possibly harm himself to name just a few issues at the moment. It is extremely difficult to be dealing with your own emotions when you are also helping to carry someone else’s as well, I carry a heavier load than most people and few understand.

So now I have sat for awhile, and wound down before bed, I will go and turn off the hum of the computer, push the button to switch off the television and turn off all the lights. Once I have got into a nice comfy set of pyjamas, climbed into my soft, warm, cosy bed, I shall lay my head  on the pillow and stare into darkness until my eyes drop into the only little bit of peace I seem to find at the moment. I need to get every wink of sleep I can, for I know tomorrow will hold the same kind of challenges and emotions as today.


Author: acarerseyes

I am a mum to four gorgeous girls, and a carer to my former partner of eight years, Chris who has a mental illness, BPD. I blog my experiences.. life is tough! We live in Greater Manchester, UK.

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