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I just read an article in The New York Times about child caregivers, a role reversal. I never thought to define it as such, but I was a child caregiver for my mother who was ill and needing bed care from as far back as I can remember until I left home at 16.

And then I served as counselor and mentor for her, as her mental illness waxed and waned, until her death in 2001.

I compare and contrast her with my husband. She battled for health and well-being all her life. He just sinks into the slough of despond and after a tough day surfing the internet, takes to his bed and refuses to cooperate.

No wonder I resent being my husband's caregiver. I feel that I've served my time once; why twice? And why with someone who won't try to help himself? (Though I must admit, I'd rather be the caregiver than be the patient.)

No one promised that life would be fair. It ain't.

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