Once the solitary caregiver gets so stressed out emotionally that her own health declines, she can no longer provide the care. The only option left is to place the family member in a nursing home - the last choice of everybody, the most expensive for taxpayers and guaranteed to leave the caregiver burdened with guilt.
While I'd like to note that there are other options than nursing home (assisted living and in-home care, to name a few top choices), Sheehy is right overall. When the caregiver is too stressed to continue care, she is often too stressed to work through creative solutions to care or to make the necessary arrangements, all of which are, additionally, stressful and exhausting.
Sheehy stresses the need to caregivers to take good care of themselves and to form a support circle of family or friends. On these very essential points, I couldn't agree more!
Just one more nudge, too, to family caregivers to get information from whatever source you can to help you provide care is the most effective, efficient and pleasant way possible. Caregiver training, in whatever form it takes, DOES work!