You were saying that your wife gives you a lot of emotional support?
Oh absolutely yes, and that is... I mean again... I have to say I'm very fortunate with my wife as not only is she an excellent carer but she has a very good understanding because of her own profession, she has a very good understanding how I feel and of course we've been married for forty-nine years so she recognises that, by looking at me.
I mean some mornings I know she gets a bit worried because some days I look... my... I go yellow and all sorts of things so I'm fortunate, I have someone living with me who cares for me very very much anyway but who also recognises my needs.
All I wish is that she would accept a bit more physical support, from outside, but I'm afraid she won't.
Can you tell me the kind of things she had to do to care for you. I know you said she's got a nursing background so that gives her extra skills, but supposing she hadn't got a nursing background would someone in her position be able to cope?
With difficulty because there are certain things for example because I am chair fast I would very quickly develop bed sores, very quickly. Heels, bottom, shoulders. But my wife is very well aware of those problems so the district nurse that comes to see me is amazed [by] the condition of my body, but then she knows and she says, “Well it's good because I've got some patients who have got lovely carers but just got no idea about massaging and oils and different ointments” and I've never actually suffered with any of those things.
I had the beginnings of a sore bottom a couple of weeks ago but my wife then put extra effort. She put extra effort into that and it's cleared up and I'm very comfortable now. But anybody like me definitely will need that kind of help. Now the way to get that, I just mentioned the district nurse, and again they might have to insist on it and that is for the carer or the patient or both, through their GP to insist that they get a nurse in at least once a day and it needs doing at least once a day to give a proper massage of the points that are mostly in contact with the bed or the chair or whatever.
Without that then a patient will very soon become very ill because a lot of terminal people become terminal a lot faster because the nursing care isn't to the standard it should be.