Family frustration...you want it done right, gotta do it yourself.

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A brief rant: Mom's oldest granddaughter is 27. She was always the closest with her grandmother, who was instrumental in raising her when she was young. She's always saying she's there to help, anything you need, just call and I'll be there and etc.

So today I had oral surgery thus I knew I'd be tied up and laid up for a bit afterward. I couldn't reschedule it again, it was a pressing issue that absolutely HAD to be taken care of NOW. I gave my niece seven days notice and emphasized that THIS was the day when I REALLY needed her to fill in, spend some time at the rehab, talk to the nurses and doctors in order to keep me posted and so on. "No problem", she said.

Well, first thing in the morning I get a text..."not sure if I can go today, no money, no gas in car, have to meet my dad (who BTW is and always will be a bum who did nothing to raise his three children and now wants a relationship now that they're grown) will call you later". Great. So I tell her no problem, swing by the house and I'll spot you some gas money. "Not sure if I can, will let you know".

So I have my procedure done, get my scripts filled and all i really want to do is get some pain meds in me and lie down. I text her to see how things are going, no reply. So I say screw it, I'll just go visit Mom now and she can go later in the day or whatever. I get there around 1:30 and Mom tells me her granddaughter hasn't even been there yet. Great. So I gut it out, gab with the PT nurse, chit-chat with Mom for a while and leave.

So I'm barely five minutes down the road and the texts start. "I saw you when you were leaving, visited but she's tired so I'll come back later". She did manage to stop by the house and pick up the twenty I left for her to use for gas, though. I go home, drug myself up and take a nap. I get up around 5:30, sore as hell, no messages. I try her cell, no reply. So an hour before visiting hours end I drag my butt back up to visit Mom again. "No, she hasn't been here since before" Mom tells me. Great.

It's not that she's a bad kid or anything, but often times it seems like all she wants is a quick daily update to make sure Grandma is still alive and once she gets that she stops worrying for the day. It's frustrating to say the least. I've let her know that she really needs to take advantage of whatever time Mom has left before it's too late but it's like talking to a wall. So my new approach is that I'm ignoring the daily update texts and telling her if she wants to know what's up she can either go and see for herself or she can wait around until it's convenient for me to update her.

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Dauph, thanks for sharing! In a nutshell, my niece is the kind of person who SAYS she'll "do anything" to help but when the need for help arises she breaks out the excuses and is nowhere to be found. And it even applies when I request a favor well in advance, too, which makes it even worse, as she'll wait until ten minutes before the thing I asked her to do then opt out, leaving me hanging.
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Your title is right on the head.

You have to do it, especially when you KNOW that your family cannot be counted on. You know it's on you, and there isn't a darn thing thing that anyone will do to help you.

When my dad was ill (he passed in 2012) I had a paid caretaker who I passed off as my boyfriend. (He was gay, I was a single mom, he needed cash, and sometimes I needed a break) "Kevin" could be counted on to check in on dad, run to the store for him, fix small things around the house.

If dad ever knew I paid him, he would have killed me. He had a thing against "paid help" in any way. But since he was my "boyfriend" it was fine. I know it wasn't true, but everyone walked away happier.

I don't know your situation, but if my story gives you any ideas, then I'm happy to have helped. Sometimes, the story is more important than the facts.

$.02 -Dauph
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Just an update: I've decided to just cut them out of the loop unless something fantastic or horrible happens. If anything they've become LESS helpful over the last few weeks. Mom might be 82 and losing it quickly but she sure called it re: the oldest one, she's about as useful as a football bat. Yesterday I asked her if she could drop by and feed the cat around dinnertime, as I knew that between visiting and a social obligation I wouldn't be home until the evening. At SEVEN o'clock in the evening she texts me and tells me that "she can't make it" THEN has the nerve to pepper me with questions about "how grandma is today". I mean sure, the cat was fine but still, not the point and definitely not "doing whatever I can to help". it would have taken her maybe fifteen minutes to get here, feed the cat and go back home and even THAT was just too much. So she's out now, unless something incredible or terrible happens she's just going to have to deal with not knowing anything and feeling anxious and uncertain just like everyone else does.
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Thanks for all replies, I appreciate everyone taking the time to respond to my rants!!

Sendme2help: if I take them all I won't have to hide them! Kidding, at least my sense of humor still works LOL! Doing well, back to real food again and thx for asking! Still sore but manageable. Re: money, that's not a problem as I'm not giving her any. If they'd like to EARN a few bucks I have plenty for them to do around here but I'm not holding my breath.
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Finished reading all above posts. Text reads: UPDATE. Reply reads: Don't have any money for you today.
Text reads: Where are you? Reply reads: Don't have any money for you today.
Next, take and hide all the pain pills. Hoping you are well enough not to need them anymore. How are you, anyway?
I wouldn't worry too much about mom, she already knows about her grand-daughter, as evidenced when she said, "Don't give her my money".
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dmanbro, if you change or tweak your expectations you will become less frustrated. I sympathize with your situation and understand you want the best for your mom. She has been admitted to a care facility for rehab, is that correct? Is that in-patient? Do you not trust to leave mom in their care for a day?
Your neice should not be allowed to visit af all because of the chaos and waking your mom up at her convenience. It appears she just wants "credit" for going so that you will continue to give her money. Stop giving her money, is my advice. I have seen this flaky behavior before. Have you checked for drugs? IMOP.
Sorry if I am way off-base, but can you explain why you are so panicked?
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I'd agree with letting the spastic granddaughter flounder around on her own.

I would probably send her an e-mail (I don't text and in fact blocked that feature on my cell phone) stating the conditions of visitation (I would e-mail rather than call because it doesn't sound as if phone calls are very productive):

1. NEVER wake up your mother when she's sleeping.

2. Either come or not come; don't harass you with explanations of what she's doing or not doing.

3. Take control of the update situation: if there are changes of which she should be aware (important qualifier), you'll notify her by e-mail. If you call her it'll just be another litany of excuses. Otherwise, if she doesn't hear from you, she can assume everything is okay, status quo, or proceeding well.

4. You spend a lot of time ensuring that your mother is getting good care; that's the bottom line issue, not updating someone who doesn't seem to be able to get her act together.

On the other hand, I suspect there are a lot of those in that age group today. And on the other hand, I was surprised the other day to see white haired people sitting in a doctor's reception area playing with their SmartPhones.

Their lives aren't with those who are living; it's with their electronic gadgets.

BTW, somewhere on tv in the last week or so I learned that there are now Internet addiction groups that provide therapy to those who can't get off the Internet. I suspect the DSM will be adding some new syndromes relating to electronic addiction.
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freqflyer: Yup and unless it's important it's going to be ONE call a day, after the visits and etc. are finished. I just don't care about her itinerary or her various woes nor can I plan my schedule around her vague plans for the day.

And that's if she even HAS a phone to use, as "right now" her own phone isn't working (most likely overdue on the bill again) so she has to use her sister's or her BF's phone to communicate. Fortunately, though, everyone's up to date re: tattoos (eyeroll).
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dmanbro, if the niece wants any information have her call you on the phone, no more texting. It is so easy to text, doesn't take much thought for the younger generation, then they are on to something else. A telephone call means she actually has to call and think on her feet when she talks to you.

My sig other's grown daughter [40] life is involved around her Smartphone. Sig other will fly in to visit her and he is competing with that darn phone.
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Update: So yesterday I stopped in to visit Mom right after breakfast. Brought her a few snacks she likes, picked up her laundry, showed her some photos, chatted about stuff, a really good productive visit IMO. When I left her she was (as usual) apprehensive about PT but all in all she was relatively fine.

So all day the niece is badgering me with the same old crap. "Updates? Not sure when I can visit today but can't stay long. Tough time paying for all that gas (facility is seven miles and an easy 15 minute trip away, BTW). Lots to do today (a lie)". At dinnertime (first time I was eating real food since oral surgery on Thursday) she calls me in a weepy breathless panic because "grandma is all groggy and saying weird stuff! What do I do??". Turns out she had PT earlier, which leaves her exhausted and agitated. Niece showed up while she was sleeping, woke her up (because God forbid her elderly grandmother is asleep when she finds the time for one of her ten minute "visits") and Mom was out of sorts and confused for a few minutes. I visited again after dinner and Mom said "yeah, I was dreaming and they woke me up for some reason". Otherwise she was fine.

So that was the end for me. Now I have her number on block. I can still see the messages and she can still leave VMs but I've had it with validating her feelings and reassuring her all the time. Already she's in a panic state, texting me and demanding to know "where I am" as if I answer to her or something. And I don't care at all, as maybe some real stress will be good for her.

Yesterday Mom was pretty hilarious re: her granddaughters and their perpetual money problems. First she made me promise that I wouldn't give them any money (particularly HER money) then she asked me how many tanks of gas they could have purchased with the money the youngest girl wasted on her idiotic tattoo. She's a real pistol and she knows those girls quite well!
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