Feeling very unhopeful for my role in my Mom's future care.

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I did it once and cannot go through this alone again. I am the eldest in a family of five. I am female and single and in my late forties. I cared for my father alone until he died from cancer in 2002. This was an emotionally overwhelming experience lasting 6 weeks living with him full time(and some visiting before that). My mother was reacting unbelievably indifferent about what was happeneing and didn't come near him, I had no help despite my siblings visiting often for weekends and they were bdownstairs watching TV on phones etc. and entertaining themselves. It was worse than if they hadn't been there at all. This made it much harder knowing what was going on, on the other side of walls. I was also an NHS worker and also see it as a responsibility to help our parents while dying as much as possible. In addition my father had anger issues and totally changed personality the entire time. He died throwing his hate at me. My mother was worse. The feeling s of being hated were all lifted away thank goodness when he died. My mother now since 2013 has advanced cancer and other medical issues. Nobody was doing anything, not even accompanying her for chemotherapy, so I came from my job abroad to live with her . Her personality has always been down on me and she is and always has been positive toward the other siblings seeing silmutaneaously many faults with me. Much of this is to do with not being married children and financially unsuccessful. However I m very independent and strong and believe regardless of this she does not deserve to die alone in nursing care since she after all has cared for and worked all her life for her children. Now my siblings have so many reasons/excuses children jobs mortages, evening jobs, living abroad with family, marriage to a spouse who dissalows time away form her etc etc but no time left to give to mother. This schedule is created by them and they wont do anything. My mother has many anger issues at me specifically and again I am the brunt of that. I feel this amongst the overall situation has worn down my confidence now. Mum is currently well but I know it will be bad for her unless some people help her through the dying process. I feel very weepy now each day as I can no longer cope with the critism and insults and then the aura of joy given to my siblings. This is getting so hard I notice I am resentful of the caring ,..the one thing I know I have skills to do. I would love a forum or some local help to mediate through what I can do in this situation so my mother is not alone or put into the lowest level nursing home which I have worked in and really would nt want for a pet let alone an elderly person. I have now got a flat in the city and am leaving my mother high and dry to very skimpy secular services. I am thinking of taking a loan to pay for more professional help. Any suggestions where I can find some support ,.....UK responsabile and try to do the right thing but cant do what I have been doing anymore.


One thing that really rattles my cage is when someone has been a super Caregiver, giving up so much of their life, that later down the road the finger is pointed at them again to be a Caregiver and once again give up their life. It would be different if that person was a paid certified professional Caregiver.

You have siblings, they need to step forward somehow to help you out since you choose to put a hold on your life to care for your Mum. When your Dad needed help, sounds like the siblings were spoiled.... someone needed to stand up and say this need or that needed to be done to help out.

And why is it always the female who does the full-time caregiving when there are brothers who could easily help out or their wives.... why is it always the single or divorced female.... or the female who is single with no children. Isn't her life just as important as a sibling who is married with children? One has to start thinking *my life is just as important as yours* toward their siblings.

As for support in the UK, hopefully others here who are from the UK will be able to direct you in the right direction.
Thank you so much for being able to express the exact issues here in my situation. There is an assumption that I have 'the time' that I have nothing else to do since I am not working. Perhaps I can do more but carry all the emotional issues and a very tight schedule of appointments as well as daily meals etc. in the medium of indifference from immediate relatives, where all of this is in a separate category. The other thing is that I don't see care giving / the practical side anyway as a burden,...I want to take of work if need be, I want to do it I want to be there for my parents,...but feel I am not able to do all this now because of the indifference and lack of any interest from the other siblings (bare one who is in another country and married with family) . People don't all willingly volunteer that is a fact. But now I'm carrying resentment so I have the burden. Apparently there is a law in Ukraine (some country east) where siblings can be sued for not helping with the care of their parents!! Has anyone heard of this?
Do you live with your mother? This would make a big difference. Once you 'establish' a pattern with you mother , it' ll be almost impossible to get out of... So, if you do something like move on your ow (which would force your siblings to get involved)' you'll be stuck with her.
rattles my cage as well. Divorced females seem to be more expendable than even divorced males. 3 older brothers and I wouldn't let none of them care for my pets much less my mom. However, I am so sorry you are facing what many of us caregivers face, all the responsibility without any of their help unless it is to critique what WE somewhat volunteered to do, whether guilt played a part or not, we chose it. Perhaps we all believed our siblings would participate more? Least I did. Sadly, this is a very common behavior amongst siblings, as well as the resentment.

I'd like to drop my mother at one of my 2 brothers who live not far from us BUT, I know it would harm mom more than anything, so I don't, like Felidae said, we just do the best we can. I can't offer much either, a hug, a shoulder, an ear to vent to... one day, when all is said and done, you'll feel better for the love and care you gave to your mom. I can only pray she's angry at you, because of her deteriorating life and probably the knowledge that the rest of her kids don't care. Remember, the caregiver is 95% always the one given the blunt of it all. We always hurt the one we love (the most) is what keeps me some what rational about the way things turned out.

I agree... 8 days and 16 nights a week.

I have heard where some countries allow people to "sue" regarding elderly parent help. Hmmm... that would be an interesting thing indeed!!

Hang in there... talk to us, we listen :)
You have siblings. You cared for your dad alone. Time for those sibs and/nhs to step up, especially if mom has been abusive in the past. Take off the superhero cape and take care of your own career, health and sanity. "Oh, I couldn't possible do that" is a useful phrase when others present you with schedules.
Caregiver's Bill of Rights:
Let's face it, one person usually does it all. Some siblings show up at the hospital. Others show up for the funeral. In reality, I don't mind it now, because my mother is not that much work. I'm sure one of my brother's family would help if I asked. To tell the truth, I have a hard time asking for help -- my problem. I wish that help would be offered, instead of having to ask for it.

My other brother lives far away, so can't help. Even when he and his wife come to visit, they don't stay more than a couple of hours. They want to visit friends and see things that are around. It is apparent they do not want to be here. It always hurts my mother's feelings, since she thinks this son is the best thing since pajamas. He is okay. He just doesn't want to sit for long and doesn't have any real attachment to my mother. He does call every month, so that is good.

I don't expect more. My brothers are busy and not attached to my mother. It would probably be better to hire help if I need it. It doesn't bother me about my brothers, since I know our family is an assortment of polite strangers. It does bother my mother, though. Unfortunately, she didn't pull the kids in when we were younger. It is too late to pull them in now.
Where in the UK are you? I know provision varies, but can you not get some help from Macmillan or similar? Tell their helpline what you've told us, and be guided as to how much you can take on. And then the lovely thing about the NHS - I'm a big fan right now! - is that they're *there.* Perfect, no, but there. If you do decide you need to distance yourself a little, or a lot, you know there will still be care and support for your mother. There is a safety net.

I'm not sure the immediate future is the issue, though, is it? It sounds as if you have a lot of thinking to do about relationships with all of your family - or, as they say, a lot of "processing." You're the eldest, you take responsibility, you also get all the flak. At some point your heart is going to say "not fair" even if your head tells you to be mature about it. Be kinder to yourself. You feel responsible, but you can't *be* responsible, not all the time, not for everyone else.

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