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Friends and Family Everyone has disagreements, even best friends and family. If you need advice about a relationship, ask us here.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Celyn Offline
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Nothing has changed - May 14th 2011, 05:53 PM

I posted ages ago about my life. It was a long post and I shall try not to let this be as long as last time. Basically, I am fed up of my life. I'm 18. And my dad has Alzheimer's. Obviously, it has got worse since the last time I posted. In a few weeks time I will be sitting my a-levels. And then hoping to go to university. I am so scared. My mum has to do a lot of intimate tasks for my dad, now that he is incontinent. Right now, my dad is hard to deal with. But because I am not there, actually watching what is going on, all I can hear is horrible noises. Like both my mum and dad are struggling. My mum is shouting and I can hear something that sounds like someone is being thrown against the door. I heard my mum say something like " I wish I could commit manslaughter". I am so scared, that something is going to happen to one of them. I know what the obvious answer is: put him into a care home. Except we can't. The care home he went to respite decided that my dad was too much to handle, so he can't stay there. The social worker said that the next step was a nursing home and then as a last resort a hospital. Somehow, the social worker missed a step, and instead my dad has a hospital placement for respite. Whether or not they can cope with him, I don't know.

I'm finding it difficult to revise for my exams too. There is so much noise in my house! my neck has a burning pain in it, because I am revising on my bed, and not a table. This is because everyone else is downstairs, and I can't concentrate there.

Also, I'm worried that if I do get into university, I'm worried about my family. I have 2 younger brothers. The youngest is 11 and is extremely annoying. He is spoilt, shouts abuse to my mum and dad, and can make my mum very upset. For example, at christmas, he didn't get the exact presents he wanted, so he said everything was crap, and my mum got upset. She spent lots of time and money on his presents. So she ended up crying in the garden, on Christmas day. Luckily, I explained to my brother that he should be grateful for what he gets. However, if I am in university, then my brother will take advantage, that I'm not there to tell him off. Also, I am afraid of him going into my bedroom as I have sentimental stuff in there but I don't have a lock on my door. Also, my mum depends on me in a way. Every time she has a problem or a story to tell, she will tell me. Even if I have heard the story before. If I am not there, no one else will listen to her. And then obviously I am worried about my mum and dad sort of fighting.

I'm worried about getting bullied in university too. I spent most of high school getting bullied, but that's another story.

But I don't always get on with my mum. I really wanted to enter a competition, called perfect day. Quite simple, describe your perfect day and you could win it. I would love to go to the premiere of Harry potter and the deathly hallows part 2 and go behind the scenes to talk to the stars (especially Alan rickman lol) anyway, my mum said I couldnt enter because the perfect day has to be after sepember. But rather than her saying it in a nice way, she just sort of had a go at me. Like I was stupid. The only thing that is keeping me going right now is dreams. And she broke mine, in a rather nasty way. I understand that even if I entered there would be a huge chance that I wouldn't win anyway. But it's just the way she said it. I have an old teacher who I keep in touch with. I wished for years that she could be my mum. And I hate to say this, but I still feel like that (though she doesn't know any of this). If I was upset, I would lay on my bed, and fantasise that she was there with me, hugging me. And in the end, we drifted off to sleep, me in her arms. I thought for ages that there was something wrong with me, like that. I don't fancy the teacher, but I couldn't understand why I wanted to sleep with her like that. A few days ago, my friend dumped her boyfriend. She was upset, but guess what? That's exactly what she did. She was on her bed, her mother hugging her, and they fell asleep like that. What did I get when my first boyfriend for a year and half dumped me? From my mum, a few hours after he dumped me "get over it". From the teacher, some sympathy. (I would put what she said, but I'm afraid of people finding out who I am). I want to go and see the teacher, at her new school, but I'm afraid that won't happen.

But overall, nothing has changed. Same undecorated house, same arguments and same feelings. Except slightly amplified with the fact that I have exams and everything.

I am so sorry about the length of this. I never meant it to be that long lol
   
  (#2 (permalink)) Old
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Re: Nothing has changed - May 14th 2011, 09:23 PM

Hey there! Your post wasn't too long, so don't worry about that. =)

First, I'm sure the hospital will be able to take care of your father. Alzheimer's is a difficult illness, but there are psychological professionals who are trained to handle the many complications that can arise from having such an illness. Smaller facilities with limited resources and incompetent personnel may not be able to handle someone who can become unruly at times, but a hospital has stricter requirements for its personnel and they generally have more government funding as well. If you are ever concerned about your father and how he's being treated at the hospital, you can get in touch with the social worker you mentioned.

Your mother does not seem to be qualified as a caretaker, so I would definitely get your father out of the house as soon as it is possible to do so. Your mother also seems to have a difficult personality all-around. Some people, unfortunately, are just DIFFICULT. It's not that they're particularly mean or anything - they're just hard to get along with. The way your mother reacts to your brother's rude behavior (running away and crying vs. disciplining him like a good mother should) and the way she reacted to your comment about the competition (putting you down vs. encouraging you or at least vocalizing her disagreement in a gentler way) is evidence of that difficult personality. Some people can change, while others cannot.

So you need to decide how you want to approach this. Do you want to believe that, after sitting down with your mother and talking about this a couple of times, she'll begin to develop a more positive attitude toward you and her family? Or do you believe that she will always be this way? If so, you need to focus on learning coping techniques for those difficult moments - what can you do to relieve your depression/anxiety when your mother puts you down? Some people write, draw, or sing, while others focus on physical activities or distract themselves with "spa days" (I personally love to swing by a cafe and get my favorite drink when I've had a rough day).

Unfortunately, there isn't much you can do about your brother. You can continue to talk to him about his unacceptable behavior, and if your relationship with your mom improves, you can encourage her to take control of the situation and discipline him appropriately; however, if he chooses to disobey and if your mother chooses to let things slide, that's not your fault, and you shouldn't feel guilty for what happens when you leave for university.

In regards to studying for exams, is it possible to hang out at the library or a friend's house for an hour or two every day, so you can study at a desk/table and have some relief from all the fighting?

One thing that is very different about university life is that you're meeting SO MANY PEOPLE! People from all walks of life, people who are intelligent, people who may have also been bullied in high school, people who are lonely and looking for friends, people who are ambitious, etc. You're still going to meet jerks, but you're also going to meet nice people like yourself. I have encountered a few rude people during my four years at university, but the nice thing is that I can always avoid them - there are 20,000 students at my university! Roommates are a little harder to avoid, but if you're nice to everyone and don't give them a reason to dislike you, then chances are you won't face bullying to the same degree that you did in high school. Remember, university is a clean slate - you can pick and choose whom you would like to associate with. If someone doesn't treat you well, walk away and find someone who will. =)

I wish you all the best, and if there was something I didn't cover that you would like to discuss in further detail, please don't hesitate to PM me!






   
  (#3 (permalink)) Old
Celyn Offline
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Re: Nothing has changed - May 15th 2011, 08:38 AM

Thanks PSY.

I don't think that my mum will change, I think she has always had a bit of a difficult personality. So yeah, I'm going to need to learn coping strategies. Though for the record, I'm not depressed. I just had a bad day yesterday, but I'm ok now. I don't want to let myself get into a state of depression, after seeing my friend with depression.

As for bullying, I know this sounds cliched, but honestly, I don't give people a reason to bully me. The bullies I come across, bullied me because I was different, you know? I never fight back, nor give a reaction to bullies. And I am a little shy.

As for my dad, we will just have to wait and see. He is getting regular respite every 5/6 weeks, so hopefully, things will start to calm down.

Thanks for your help
   
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