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Old 05-05-2013, 10:18 AM   #21
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Make sure to check into the side aspects of the caregiver program. Are you allowed to take a side job(in many such programs you aren't), etc.etc.

I would dfeinitely seek other employment if I were you, but I don't know if the caregiver job would be what I would seek out.Caregiver burnout is a very real, and VERY dangerous thing.
Yes. I can work as many hours as I want. I am not employed by the VA. They are very specific about that. They basically said it helps ease the financial burden for people who do work but can't do full time bc they need to help their vet, too.
As for not seeking the caregiver job, that's not an issue. It is my job. He's my husband. The program is not designed to give him a caregiver if I am unwilling. It is to compensate me for the things I already do anyway. It helps ease the burden. Their thinking is they can take away some of the financial burden to help prevent burnout. A lot of people who resent being a caregiver name financial burden as a big reason I guess. Because they have to quit jobs to do it and it causes even more strain.

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Old 05-05-2013, 10:22 AM   #22
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It sounds like you are already his primary caregiver. It would be good to get paid for doing so, but what are you going to do as this situation deteriorates (as you make his health sound like it is failing)? I worry about your mental health also. Being a 24 hour caregiver is a major challenge to deal with long term. I am going on assumptions but I would guess that you have been don't this for a year or two. Just be sure you are looking at this often and that you are willing to reevaluate the situation often. I know your relationship is strained as is, but I worry that will get worse as time goes on because of being a caregiver long term is so very stressful. Please also look into respite care, even if he may be a jerk to them because they will get over it (and are also trained to deal with it) and you both would benefit from it.

As for the dog, look into the housing laqs, but I think your landlord has to allow the dog if it is a service animal, it may be questionable if it is a therapy dog though.
The program does give respite care. A decent amount of it I just don't remember exact specifics. As he gets worse, then we will revisit a home health aide if we need one. I know my limitations and I know I can't do it all but for the right now, it's doable. It just frees up more time for me to do the things I already do. I don't resent having to do them, I just struggle with time management bc if my time suck of a job. I work 30 hours but I can't condense it over 4 days which would be great. I have to work 5-6 days.

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Old 05-05-2013, 01:54 PM   #23
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Re: WWYD

I'm sorry Our DHs sound very, very similar. I think that with my DH, the PTSD intensified some of his not so great traits, like his lack of filter or social awareness. Being around other vets does help some, so I would recommend checking out your local VA and seeing what they have to offer. With my DH, he found a couple hobbies that he really loves. He pretty much looses himself in them and becomes a little obsessed, but that is fine with me. I'm not sure what kind of stuff your DH likes, but I really recommend encouraging him to find something that he really likes to do. I know it's hard though, PTSD is so tough on marriages, even when you are really trying. As far as your job, I would wait until the caregiver thing goes through, give notice at the bank job, and then find something very part time that you really enjoy. Being a caregiver can be stressful. When you are an official caregiver, the person you are taking care of tends to become very psychologically dependent on you. I think it is a wonderful thing, but you are going to need something that you enjoy that allows you to get away a bit.
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Old 05-05-2013, 03:25 PM   #24
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I think I would quit the bank job, take the summer off and find a fun PT low stress job or volunteer in the kids' school or some thing else you enjoy doing if its not financially necessary for you to work. That will also help prevent burn out! I think it's great to help ease the financial burden of being the caregiver for a loved one. Good luck, I hope things work out for you!!
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:29 PM   #25
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Re: WWYD

My dad is a disabled vet. He's rated 100+% disabled due to a service-connected disability. My mom was being paid to take care of him under the same program until recently.

I'm not sure how much you've talked about it with the VA, but the pay isn't super great. (I think my mom said that it was $16 an hour, but I could be wrong.) There was a cap on the amount of hours she could claim. I'm not sure what it was, but it was low - especially considering that my dad relies on others to do EVERTHING for him. My mom's max checks weren't very much. That's just something to consider if you hadn't already.

I will say that the VA is phenomenal at taking care of their service-connected disabled vets. My parents have a very cushy life. Their VA benefits pay very well and take care of them very well. The VA even provided a large grant when my parents built a handicap accessible home, specifically designed for my dad's needs. They provide my mom with a month of respite per year. They also have staff in-home taking care of my dad daily. He has a home health aid, a nurse, and PT visiting all the time. The VA paid a large portion of my college education too. They have been beyond amazing.
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Old 05-06-2013, 06:07 AM   #26
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Re: WWYD

I think that quitting the bank job is a given, and it sounds like you are planing to quit after your co workers vacation anyway. I do think however that getting a part time gig and/or going to school is also a great idea. I think that as his spouse you are of course supposed to take care of your husband. However I think it is both unhealthy and unwise to completely give up EVERYTHING to take care of him. I think you have to have some time to yourself, whether that's hanging out with friends or going to classes or whatever, for your mental health. And I think that financially it only makes sense for you to keep up some manner of income. There are a lot of what ifs in a situation like yours so I think that the more options you keep open the better. And maintaining some sort of part time job is just a matter of keeping one of those options open.

As for going to school and going into law, there is NO SUCH THING as "that ship has sailed" or "to old". If that is what you want to do, then go do it. Make a plan, figure out how to pay for it without creating a lot of debt and risk for yourself, make sure you are going into something your really want to do; but once you have all the details worked out, just go do it. You are never too old until you are dead.
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:08 PM   #27
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Re: WWYD

I really want to go to school for photography. That's what I love. Dh said go for it so I am looking into it
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:12 PM   #28
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I really want to go to school for photography. That's what I love. Dh said go for it so I am looking into it
If you want to be a photographer, you do NOT need to go to school for that. Unless you want the degree too. What kind of photography do you want to do? Portraits? Weddings? News? Artistic?
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Old 05-06-2013, 04:19 PM   #29
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Re: WWYD

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If you want to be a photographer, you do NOT need to go to school for that. Unless you want the degree too. What kind of photography do you want to do? Portraits? Weddings? News? Artistic?
Well I would love to do it for news, and I was thinking weddings/pictures because that would bring in money, but my favorite thing to do is take my camera and get lost in the woods
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