Mental support for the carer

Hi I haven't put any posts on for a while, as I have been struggling to accept my new Dad and the way he is now. This is brought on more so with mine and my partners wedding in a couple of months. I miss my old dad and how strong he was.

I have started a bit a counciling to talk through my worries and fears. People tend to ask how dad is, but forget about my mum who isn't in good help and me. I know that might sound selfish to some I don't intend it that way. 

Hi im a full time carer for my husband who had a huge stroke just over 2 years ago, i had to give up work to look after him. I too miss the strong man he was and worry every day i have just been referred for some councelling hasnt started yet but i know how you feel i miss my pre stroke husband so much

Hi Ann. This is the first time I have posted about being a carer but wanted to reply to you, because you sum up exactly how I feel as well. 

My husband had a stroke nearly 2 years ago, suddenly, no warning, no risk factors at 45 years old. It was a massive, catastrophic stroke that turned his and our lives upside down in an instant.

But I think there is something unique about spousal caring which is hard for others, not in our situation, to understand.

I miss my old husband in many ways, especially with his severe aphasia now and he was so articulate and eloquent before and just to lose that, breaks my heart.

Also, I don't know if you miss the way you can lean on your spouse for support and for being that emotional cushion, at times of stress or during ups and downs. That's disappeared too. 

But, yes missing the strong, healthy pre-stroke husband and now being fully responsible for him and dependant on me is scary. 

I've not seen a counsellor but sometimes really feel I need to. I'm on a low dose antidepressant which takes the edge off. 

Anyway, hang on in there!?

Your words ring very true. I am the SS and I know how much my better half wants to continue to lean on me, and I cant do much in return. Yes one flash and life is changed forever.

I find all counselling etc helpful. Much better than trying to mask the problems with tablets. And maybe a group conselling session would refresh you in many ways. Try your local stroke group. Or the GP surgery. Lots of info there.


Thanks Colin. I've tried a support group run by the local stroke association, but it finished due to lack of people attending. I'm tempted to set up my own but with caring for my husband and two children (one of which has Type 1 diabetes) it's fitting it all in. I have my review of medication coming up soon. I found tablets useful during the transition of hospital to home as my husband was in hospital seven and a half months, and then back in again for a cranioplasty operation. I think now - a year on - things have settled down a bit into a routine I might try coming off the tablets with help from our GP and seeking couselling instead.


Hi good to go to counselling!  Have a lovely wedding too, and relish that your Dad is still here, in whatever condition.  Big love to Mum, you and everyone!  

 My dad had a stroke two years ago and he has came to live with us a year ago since discharge ( after a year in hospital ) I feel guilty saying this but I really miss my dad and the man he was .

I know he's here and he's done amazing but I miss so much of who he was x

Hi Cat. There is no shame in what you say. Why wouldnt you miss your dad and how he was prior to stroke? Strokes are cruel and uninvited, they come with so much stuff that im yet to meet any families that arent rocked by stroke. More often than not family care givers do or are expected to carry on as best as they can and quite frequently bury any feelings they may have which is rarely beneficial.

Its good to express your feelings, in my locality our local carers centre have free counselling sessions for carers, its a well used service. Its certainly worthwhile being able to talk about your feelings its even better if you can do this with someone neutral. Check out they may be able to guide you to localised support for you.

Your dad will need your love and care as well as all the things that you used to do with him prior to his stroke. He may need more time, patience and support than before. He will need cheering on and humour. Sometimes people need a lot of time to develop a new way and its (i believe in my experience) a lot easier if they have supporters who give time and offer space when required.

Continue to miss your dad. But everytime you see a glimpse of the old him celebrate it wholeheartedly and let him know why your celebrating. If you have videos of him pre stroke share them with him, remind him of who he was, it may help. 

Best wishes,



I am a carer too, for my husband who had stroke 14 months ago. Now roles has turned around and it is challenging many times, especially for a woman (me, maybe you too) who used to have a strong man around that I can depend on. What helped me is a deep process of meditation and yoga. As I also had to have up my carrier I spend lots of time at home. My husband is also using yoga and meditation therapy now and he is getting much better. I think without a spiritual approach to stroke and a sudden change it creates for all around the survivor, it would be impossible for me to not get depressed.