Man Praised for Refusing to Take Care of Sister Who Has Cancer: ‘Living For Myself’
A man on Reddit was praised after he revealed why he is refusing to be his sick sister's caregiver.
He explained that older sister was "recently diagnosed with breast cancer" and everyone in his family is pressuring him to "take care of her" and "not be selfish and put her first."
Content warning: Mention of suicide, below.
"I’ve always put other people first from the time I was 11 and my mom got sick. My sister couldn’t stand to watch my mom be sick and refused to deal with it. So from as far back as her original diagnosis I have dealt with my mom's sickness while managing my own anxiety and depression alone," he wrote via Reddit.
"There was one time my mom was so sick she could barely stand and my sister refused to drive her to the ER so I went with my mom and luckily a friend was able to drive us but she couldn’t stay so I did," he continued.
The man claims his sister didn't visit even once during the two weeks their mom was in the hospital.
"I’ve taken care of everyone nearly my entire life and when I ask for help I get nothing. I contemplated suicide and managed it all by myself because every time I ask for help I’m met with 'you’re the strong one' [and] 'I have things to deal with figure it out. I have finally started living for myself and now I’m expected to give up everything I’ve worked for," he recalled.
The man noted that it "doesn't seem fair" and he knows it may seem "selfish," but this time he is focusing on himself.
"I don’t want my life to revolve around someone that wouldn’t do the same and I know I’m the a--hole for it but I can’t bring myself to care," he concluded.
In the comments section, users rallied behind the man, with many telling him to take care of himself first and foremost.
"You're the strong one because you weren't given any other choice. And you have had things to deal with and have figured it out that you are unable to help your sister. You have been caring for others since you were 11. It's time for someone else to step up, or if they can't, they can hire someone to help your sister. Don't feel bad. Carer burnout is very real and you need to keep putting yourself first," one person wrote.
"Self-care is not selfish. It's how you function. If you can't take care of yourself, you can't take care of anyone else, either. Be healthy before you take on additional responsibilities. The rest of the family can step up if they feel so strongly," another chimed in.
"Caregiver burn-out is a real thing. And watching someone die or waste away from cancer is a sure way to spiral your mental health, especially if you're in a better place now," someone else commented.