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Yes, I have some ways that I replenish myself, not that I can claim to be a master.

One way is to come on here and offer people a helping hand. It's not like throwing a switch; you don't immediately feel better about yourself. But in the short term, it can distract you from your own troubles, and in the long term, you begin to realize that you have a value, just like the people you're helping.

Another way is to go out into nature. I tend to take a long drive to the mountains, hike to a little-known overlook, and just sit myself down facing the immensity of the world. On the one hand, it can make you feel small, but on the other, it makes your problems seem even smaller. :-)

Yet another way can be to talk to or visit family members, if you find support from them. They can give you a sense of continuity, of togetherness, that other people may not. This one depends, of course, on the quality of your relationship with the particular family members.

A final way I can suggest would be to share with us what it is that is depleting you, and perhaps get some support from us random strangers. Sometimes it feels like, "of course family will say nice things", and that's when it can be instructive to find support from someone who doesn't "have to". :-)

I hope you find a way to feel better, willi.

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Thank you for taking time to share your thoughts. I feel nature, especially the mountains, to be most healing for me. I think of nothing there, I become one with nature. For now, I have been watching the autumn leaves dance across the road. Perhaps a hike to Boreas Pass is what I need.

I would like to respond more to you tomorrow, I have had a long day. Namaste.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Willy,

I went back and read most of your posts. If I understand correctly, and I am not sure that I do, you have a close family member who has dementia due to Alzheimer's disease and you are naturally broken hearted over this.

However, I had the impression, from your earlier post, that a close family member was arrested????? I do feel somewhat confused about the issues that are bothering you and I hope you clarify.

I have a couple of thoughts about this in regards to yourself:

1. We suffer from trauma when someone close in the family has something terrible happen to them, whether it is something legal or something with regard to health.

2. It is always difficult to lose a loved one and grief is inevitable.

3. If we are talking about grief because someone close is dying or has died, one of the things it opens up for each one of us is the question:

"Well, if he/she an die, so can I."

Loss often brings with it the reminder that we are also mortal and that can be very, very unsettling. Ernest Becker wrote a great book when he was dying and he entitled it "Denial of Death." We go through our lives with the notion of our own death pushed way back. When we are reminded of death, it breaks through our denial and then we feel panic and all types of upset. This usally subsides after some time but it is unsettling.

Please clarify and what do you think??


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Guest ASchwartz

Hello again Willy,

I also wonder why I feel somewhat worse than I have felt after a death actually occurred--my father's or other's who have recently died.

The reason is that stress is cumulative. These things build up. It is not that one occurs and its over. Even after years it can stay there. This is not years but very recent. And so the bank account that has the reserves of energy gets more and more depleted.

As far as your mother is concerned, it is really important that you call the National Alzheimer's Association. Do a search of the Internet for them or call information from your telephone. They can point you to many services available for Alzheimer's patients and their caretakers. I seem to remember your once saying that you cannot do that because your mother won't accept anyone. Well, it is not up to her, especially now when her thinking is deteriorating everyday and so she cannot make a rational decision. For your own physical and psychological health you really must contact them for help. You need time to get out of the house and have liesure time. If you tell me you cannot then it is guilt that is operating. No matter how difficult your situation you can help yourself, even in some small way. You must have relief.

Of course you are exhausted. I know all about this having experienced many times in my family and my work in mental health.

What do you think?

Allan :)

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