Feeling resentful.

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I'm taking care of grandparents, i see cousins post pictures of vacations, talking about everything they get to do. I hear uncles talk about the exciting things in their lives, see their new toys.. and I'm here spending my time and money taking care of grandma and grandpa, and they all keep calling me telling me what they think should be done. I'm starting to resent them. I haven't talked to anyone about how i feel because i feel childish for feeling resentful, and guilty because of how i feel. One cousin is off for a weekend with her friends, she does this twice a year.. leaves her kids to go hang out with a friends, stay in hotels, and go shopping... she also calls me and tells me what she thinks should be done with grandma because she seems to think that she is in charge of everything... I have had one day off in a few months.. and it was because my grandmothers sister and and brother in law came down to help. and I i was running a fever so i asked them to help grandma with everything. Everyone lives an hour or more away, i live 2 miles from grandma.. so of course i am the one here to help, and i don't resent my grandparents at all.. But every time someone calls and starts telling me what to do.. i feel like crying and screaming at them. Are these feelings normal, what would you do in my situation... keep in mind i have 6 kids and my husband works out of town a lot.

14 Comments

Do the grandparents have funds? You need to hire some reliable in home care. Are you POA? If not, who is. Did you volunteer to do this? Who decided you and no one else? Or did it start being manageable and now it's not? That happens to a lot of us. You need to tell whoever is "in charge" that you can't do this job anymore, that they are going to have to make other arrangements.

christenejara, call up all your relatives and tell them as of January 1st, 2015 you will no longer be able to take care of your Grandparents per your doctor's orders, and that you will be placing them in an assistant living facility closer to where they all live.

See your primary doctor and explain to him/her what is happening to your physical and mental health, the crying and screaming is a cry for help. Ask the doctor to write a note saying that you are no longer going to be a Caregiver.

Remember 1 out of every 3 Caregiver dies leaving behind the person(s) they were caring. There are times I think my parents will outlive me, so I am very resentful of that... my parents got to have a wonderful fun filled 25 years of retirement.... I am over 65, and I have had -0- years, or months, or days of retirement.

No grandchild should be responsible for the care of their grandparents no matter where they live. It is so totally unfair why one person out of all the relatives is chosen to do all the Caregiving..... we all need to start learning to say *no* and instead say *I can help out if grandma needs to go to the doctor*.
Ba8alou, they have a limited amount of funds that will quickly be eaten up by the out of pocket costs grandpa will accumulate inthe nursing home. Med A says they will only cover the first 100 days, after that tricare takes over. we just this weekend hit the 100 days so tricare takes over but will only cover 75% of room and board, but only room and board, he will have to cover the cost of medical supplies... so I really have no clue how quickly their funds will run out. No one has POA yet.. two of my uncles tried to get themselves as POA, and didn't consult anyone else.. luckly grandpa is still all mentally there and I was there to say no for grandma (she is showing signs of dementia, and may have an MRI this month to confirm or rule that out). I will be appointed Medical POA for grandma here as soon as the paperwork is drawn up.

How this situation developed was that i am the only family here in town, everyone elses lives an hour or more away. It started with me just helping with a few things here and there, but as they both began to decline, i took on more and more. When grandpa was moved to the nursing home, i took on more care with grandma, and thats when i started noticing things like memory loss and confusion. She got real sick and ended up inthe hospital, they sent her home, and i spent a day and a half checking her blood sugars every 2 hours because we couldn't keep them down. She was amitted to the nursing home at that point, for about 3 weeks, she got better, but still memory loss and confusion. So its not that i vollenteered to do all this, but what else am i supposed to do? I cannot turn a blind eye knowing how bad she has gotten. And i am willing to do the work to keep her home as long as possible.. ( i do realize that she will have to go into a home at some point).. but i am sick and tiered of everyone telling me what to do, how to do it. I'm tiered of everyone talking behind each others backs. I have asked several times that all of grandma and grandpas children have a meeting..together to talk about everything.... they all have excuses as to why it won't work, but they all seem to think that they know what is best for grandma.. even though no one is here. I don't mind caring for my grandma, and i feel no resentment towards her or grandpa.. but i feel it towards everyone who is not here, but thinks they know best. Does that make any sense?
freqflyer,

At this point where all of my grandparents children are bickering back and forth, i don't want them here taking care of grandma and grandpa. Many of them seem to think that since grandpa is in the nursing home that he doesn't need to be informed about grandma's health, and think that he doesn't need to know about his own finances. I am learning to balance it all.. and working towards asking for more help and learning the best way to delegate her care and needs. I just don't know how to stop feeling so angry at the rest of the family.. not for not being here, but for the constant opinions, and asking me to do extra, or telling me not to tell the other siblings this or that, or saying "grandpa doesn't need to know about that." They are all acting more and more like highschool girls than grown adults.
christenejara, if you want to continue to keep being a Caregiver for your grandparents, you need to tell the other relatives that you are too busy for that nonsense. If they want to make changes on how things are, they need to physically come into town and help you out.

How old are your grandparents, how long has you been caring for them? Your grandparents could be around for another 10 years. I don't want you to be a revolving door, meaning when your grandparents pass on, that your grandmother's sister moved in, or one of your aunts/uncles, because you have experience caring for the elderly.
freqflyer,

grandpa is 85 and grandma is 86. At the rate that grandma is sneaking sweets she may not be around much longer.. and at how quickly her mental health is declining... i'm afraid she may have to be in the local nursing home before winter over.

I won't take on another relative.. unless it was my mom or inlaws, but both are still in their early 50's and very healthy.

Did you have to put your foot down with family? Did it cause fueds or fights? I'm usually very quiet and reserved. I hardly speak without taking great consideration as to what i am going to say and the impact it will have. I have decided to send one email to everyone laying down rules..... I am still carefully thinking about what those rules should be... i don't want to start a fight, but your right, if they think they can do better, they better move their happy butts down here and prove it. I guess i need to stop thinking about everyone else feelings and just worry about mine, my kids, and my grandparents at this point.
You have every right to feel angry, at yourself! Yes, you do have to put your foot down or else you will have everyone elses feet all over you....it is called being a doormat. We set boundaries to protect ourselves, our families and our homes.
christenejara, just curious why your Mom isn't caring for her own parents since she is only 50 and very healthy? Rarely does one hear that a grandchild is the main Caregiver. Good heavens, you already have a very full plate with your own household, and doing much of that on your own. I would have packed my bags and ran away from home by now.

After 6 years I finally had to put my foot down late week, should have done it years ago... my parents are in their 90's and still living independently alone in their own home.... I live in the same subdivision. What I do isn't that much compared to those who have a parent or grandparent or spouse living at home... but for me it was very stressful and mentally exhausting. I'm on only child so there isn't anyone buzzing in my ear, except occasionally my sig other.
Christine, first off, if you are there "on the ground" you need to have POA. It sounds as though you may need to file for Medicaid soon. Talk to the social worker at the nh about that.

With regard to the buzzing, yes, send an email. It should be polite but firm. People are allowed to have opinions and you are free to ignore them. I'm curious what the aunts think that grandpa doesn't need to know. I know that when my mom got to a certain age, I stopped telling her things in detail that were up in the air" such as a loved one having a medical test or procedure that we didn't know the outcome of yet. This is not hiding things, it's just waiting until you have a complete story.

To be a caregiver, you have to let some stuff roll off your back. Do go see your doc and explain the stress you're under. Take care of your health and make sure that your children are getting what they need. And yes, I wonder why your parents/and their siblings aren't doing more to help in this scenario.
My mom is currently attending college in another state. 4 uncles live in other states, one is 3 hours away, and one is currently only one hour away but has a heat condition and is in no physical state to care for anyone.

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