My brothers will not help out. They think it is the sisters responsibility to take care of our mother.

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Our brothers will not help out. We are trying to renovate our family home
so that mother can return home from the Nursing home. But they will not help
us. What can we do to get them to help out? The sisters are doing everything
and the brothers are just sitting around calling each other on the phone
complaining about what we are doing to finish the renovation process. They will not lift a finger. Please help


I grew up with this on my mirror: " A son is a son until he takes a wife, a daughter is a daughter for all of her life"... pretty much the story of my life. My brother only lives about 31/2 hours away, he goes to his 2nd home 17 plus hours away at least once a month. He hasn't managed to see our mother in almost 2 years now. He calls her once a week and thinks she sounds good, because she is such a great fooler on the phone, and that is his idea of being a good son. Meanwhile I am my soon to be 85 year old mothers independence. He has chosen to not speak to me any longer but talks to other family members that all he used to do is critize and make fun of. But he will be right here quickly when it is time for the will. I think I'm a little bitter.
Your situation is more common than perhaps you realize. I am sick and tired of our "sexist" society wherein daughters are expected to take on the care of elderly parents while sons get to have their lives! I am told that is in part due to how men and women differ in terms of how they are "wired." This is a bunch of crap. In my situation, my mother was always there for her son and me her daughter. In fact, as I look back, her son was always coddled and cared for. I was the strong one. I work full-time, recently fell and hurt my back on my mother's steps, and now have my mother living with me. I detest my so called "family." My way of dealing with this is to accept it and keep as much distance as I can.
There is no way to make it equal. No one is obligated to take care of their parents, b ut it's nice if they can find them the right supports and be around for visits. It's ultimately up to the parents if your brothers are expected or not expected to help out. If they are expected to help but don't, I'm sure your parents will see that. If your parents don't expect them to help or any of the kids to help, then you have to back off. You can then make it equal by hiring someone and telling the guys that the costs will be divided or your parents can move into a home. You are putting yourself in this situation. Who is putting these demands on you? Tell the family that it's too much for you and if it's not equal, then you can only visit and not help in any other way. Ask your parents what they expect from their children. Their opinions matter. You didn't say how your parents feel about this or what their expectations are. If they want everything equal, have a family meeting to discuss the will and let your parents have voice their wants and concerns.
To musiclover1: I agree with your comment. I did everything for my parents my whole life while my brother got away with lying on the couch and being served. I suggest that kids talk to their parents and tell them they will find supports for them but that the kids can't stop their lives to care for them. I almost lost my husband and my career to feeling guilty over my father's demands. If you can't help and aren't in the will, who cares? And if there's money left for a will, why aren't the parents using that money for proper care? This is what retirement funds and selling their home is for. Sometimes kids are willing to sacrifice their lives to get an inheritance. If it's too stressful, it's not worth it. Also, women are expected to do too much and every family should make plans while their parents are coherent to discuss living arrangements and kids' responsibilities.
I guess my MIL is lucky, because in our situation it is my husband that takes care of his Mom & his sister can't be bothered. Well actually it is me that is with her all day while he is at work, but he does all he can when he's not at work. His mother was always a very moody & highly critical person before her dementia & his sister uses that as an excuse saying thats why she moved out of state years ago to be away from her. Even if your brothers don't want to take care of her because they think it's a females role, then THEY ABSOLUTELY should be doing EVERYTHING they possibly should be doing as far as the renovations. To me that is a male role.They should be there doing that any free time from work that they have. I would bring that to their attention. Just tell them that. If the females will be taking care of her that is only fair that they do this physical work getting the place ready. As far as I'm concerned they are getting off VERY EASY. At least once they are done,then thats it. Once they are done you females will still be taking care of her until she's no longer living. Good luck to you. My sister in law contributes NOTHING to my MIL. Meanwhile she's the very wealthy,early retired(60yrs.old) ,no kids one living the high life with a giagantic home with the shore of Myrtle Beach as her backyard.I'm having a total knee replacement on Friday & my husband ask her if she would at least have my MIL there for the first 2 weeks after my surgery and the answer was a quick "NO" saying "mom wouldn't be happy here". An gave her long list of reasons why. NONE of which were anywhere near the truth. Go figure!!! Again good luck. I sure hope you have more luck than us!!!!!
Growing up I fully expected care of my parents would probably fall on me the only girl. My dad died 7 years ago and I think it was a wake up call for my oldest brother who lives in the same city. He was always to busy to stop in and see my folks, but after dad's death he realized that mom's time left was slowly ticking away. Mom recently had to move from my home to an assisted living Alzheimers facility and oldest brother was right there helping and coping with me. Our middle brother who lives on the other side of the state.....well he calls occassionally when he feels like it. Through out all of these though my oldest brother and I have become very close, making decisions and dealing with everything that comes with caring for an aging parent. For that I am very grateful.
My mother has 5 kids including me in it and I'm the only one doing it all they are ALL WORTHLESS. They don't care. But they say they do. They told me they have to work they have there lives she should be put in a home because it's just way to much to deal with she has dementia. They said It's my fault that I choose to live in that misery. I have no one to turn to but myself I have been taking care of my mom now for 7 years and now 1 year in her worse case of it.
If a person is beyond care in the home, sometimes a home is better. We as children come to a point where we aren't qualified to take care of someone with dementia. You can help and give support but shouldn't do everything.
I have one brother, two years older. When my mother passed away he retired and moved to Cape Cod, his favorite place, with his second wife. A couple of months after my mother passed my father had to have a triple bypass. With the loss of my mother and his operation he was weak and in didn't want to be alone. I felt sorry for him, sold my home and moved in with him. For me personally it was a big mistake. He recovered well and his old habits of being controlling and nasty started. I do all the regular things such as cooking, shopping, trips to the doctors, laundry, cleaning etc. My brother who lives abaout 2 1/2 hr away visits twice a year. Maybe one more visit depending on if there's a wedding, funeral etc. He calls my father once a week and if he doesn't get him he'll wait for the next week. His calls to me have become less and less. I truly believe he doesn't want to hear what's going on here. He offers no advise or assistance in any way. I tell him how I've fixed the toilet, put a new door knob in and other things of that nature. When he comes here it's like he's a guest. At Christmas he and his wife come here first, bring the usual fruit basket every year. They sit talking, looking at their watches telling us where they're going for dinner. Never, never inviting me and my father to join them. Last Christmas I mentioned it to him that it would be nice if we joined them. He hesitated and said it would be a problem. He and his second wife have an adult son who is married. They try to contact him to join them. Last year they couldn't reach him, so he then tried calling here after they left. I told my father if we aren't invited to go to dinner with them I won't be sitting here when they come. I suggested to my father that we could go some where for dinner. He said it wouldn't be right since they came ALL THE WAY here. I kept to my word and went shopping. When I got back they were gone and never asked my father to go. I could go on and on about different situations similar to that. Bottom line is there are no excuses for healthy siblings like my brother but pure SELFISHNESS! I will continue to care for my father who is 97 and failing. Someone has to do it. I only wish I didn't resent it at times like I do. I often think maybe if he were a female, a sister it would be different???
Wow! I did a lot and my father was also nasty so when he asked to move in, I said it wouldn't be possible. I knew if I did, he wouldn't be satisfied and I would end up getting divorced. We all make choices, and it's too bad you had to go through this, but people are evil and take advantage of those who are helpful.

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