Resentment. It's a loaded word. If you mention the word to a psychotherapist, you'll probably be told that it's harmful and that you "shouldn't" be resentful. It's OK, they say, to be angry, disappointed or depressed, but don't be resentful. I'm here to say that as a caregiver for someone who has MS, I'm damned resentful! I resent the fact that my wife, for no apparent reason, is saddled with this disease. I resent the fact that "the best years of my life" have been overtaken with caregiver's responsibilities, preventing me from doing so many things that I want to do. I resent the fact that my friends and coworkers so casually do the things I'd like to do and probably take their life situations for granted. I resent the fact that many non-caregivers romanticize the chronic caregiver role. I resent hearing (yes, I really have heard this) caregiving for a loved one with a chronic disease is like preparing chicken soup for one's spouse when he or she has a bad cold, just for a longer period of time. I resent the financial impact my wife's MS has had on us.
My resentment is focused. I don't resent my wife. I don't resent the people who don't and can't understand. I don't resent the people who have the freedom to do what they want with their time. Bud do I resent my wife's MS and the life situation it has put me in? You better believe I do.
There. I said it. I don't think it was harmful. To the contrary, it felt good to just to put it out there. Do you feel resentful?