Only daughter with zoned out brothers? Venting welcomed!

Started by


Full Moon Babalou, anything is possible.
Babalou, is this your daughter? And your step sons? Or are you addressing those who might have this situation? I'm kind of confused.
Someone said they thought this needed to be a thread. #being helpful?
Oh, sorry, I'm a bit slow tonight. I agree - complaining about one's siblings is one of the major themes of posters.
I'll start the ball rolling. I read on another thread that people were interested in talking about this.

I am the only daughter in a family of 4 kids. One of my brothers died in his 50s. Two remain. Neither are involved with caregiving. One lives with his wife halfway across the country, so there isn't really anything he can do. The other lives an hour away with his family. They are very involved in their local community and church. Their church relations have become their family, so my brother pays little attention to us here. This is okay with me, since I know people have to have their own lives. It drives my mother crazy, though. She talks about him every day. He is the golden child and she blames his wife for ruling the roost and keeping him away from her. I hear about him and his children so much, especially the eldest son. She doesn't understand why they don't come around or call.

So I don't mind my brothers not helping, but I do wish my mother wouldn't talk so much about the one that lives close by. I think she believes he is her only joy, even though he pays her little mind. Sometimes I write him and tell him to call her when he gets the chance. My brother isn't much of a talker, so the conversation is short. But she usually feels better after talking to him.

Not very exciting, I know. I have a feeling other sole daughters will want to add to this if they see it, so I am bouncing it back to the top.
I think the prodigal sons and daughters are the ones elders often want to bring back into their lives. Perhaps there's some basic sense of abandonment by one's child, or it's the need to have all the children back in the fold as they were when they were growing up. Or perhaps it's a sense of rejection that hurts more as parents age.
I think Christmas hurts the most. At first they are there with their kids. Then the kids marry and the spouses are added to the table. Then there are grandchildren to add to the table. Everything is so full.

But then one or more kids move away. The grandchildren get married and start their own lives. The spouse dies. The Christmas gathering becomes smaller and smaller. Where is everyone? Don't they care about them anymore?

I explain to my mother that it is the way of life, but she finds little comfort. I understand why the family members are absent. I also understand the way she feels. It is just the way life is.

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

Please enter your Comment

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support