I wanted to send a fierce but truthful letter to my brother and sister-in-law to open their hearts. But I thought I'd post for insight first
Initially there was complete family DENIAL of Mum’s dementia! Now your strategy is DENIAL of the caregiving requirements of dementia. This makes complete sense - why would there not be?
I have given you a detailed spreadsheet of the costs of this home and caring for Mum many months ago - this was the same spreadsheet that was given to Revenue Canada. Also a couple of times I’ve sent you what it costs for full time care at home in Ontario. I have even contacted the author and suggest she does an assessment so you can accurately know what’s being provided and what might be needed in the near future.
This you did not feel necessary. Why? Because you don’t want to know - because denial serves you.
Not acknowledging a fraction of these costs is at the heart of what is causing so much stress - and tearing a rift in the family. I have been shouldering a constantly escalating level of care of Mum for 5 years now. You believe that as you did not care for Mum at [brothers house] that anything that I give Mum is without value - as it is not cash (before or after tax).
[Sister in law], I have to keep giving Mum care otherwise she feels abandoned and her mental health and well-being spirals downwards quickly. Otherwise what if I did not care and let you and [my brother] pay for full time care and not worked hard to ensure great caregivers at less LESS than MINIMUM wage - because that’s what I’m managing. $40 for five hours. $1500 a month for 2. 5 days a week of live in care. I did 15 phone interviews and 5 in person interviews for caregivers in the last two months. I handle the training the scheduling the shopping and all the logistics. Your strategy is to devalue what I offer and only place value on the your “after tax” money.
[My Brother], you well know that [our sister] is not capable of consistent care for MUM. However, its very convenient that you constantly offer Playter and Caro. First you denied Mum had dementia - and the care needs that go with it - now you deny the level of care.
[Our sister] has only able to get here for about six hours in three weeks. If [our sister] could do more she WOULD. She has heart and is very well meaning. However she is overwhelmed by the ongoing circumstances of her life and has been so for some time. She, as I’ve said long ago, has needed real help to correct childhood patterns. Hopefully through this business training and opportunity she will get more insight and we can be of more real empowerment and support to her. But MENTAL health has been OFF your radar for as long as I’ve known you - why? The first time I heard you use the word was two weeks ago - in reference to what your students needed. It was good to hear, but a bit overdue. Time to do some reflecting back on how you behaved relative to Mum due to this blindness.
I’ve have over and over made sacrifices, both personal and in terms of Mum’s care and wellbeing, so you'd wake up to Mum’s care needs. I will NEVER DO THIS AGAIN. You are too busy and so you are blind to most of them. Mum is too fragile to leave her in your hands - your ideas of dementia are too simplistic and I will not let you discover through accident her real needs.
Your solution during the past six years was bring Mum back to [your house] over and over as a reason not to offer support - we did this many times - each time Mum was back in the same situation where her care needs were not acknowledged - and no pattern of care was acknowledged or provided. You made an offer that was impossible to accept as you were in denial of her care needs. Now you offer more or less the same thing - and as usual offering [my sister] - who has not been capable of consistent care for many years.
YES, it is a huge undertaking to keep an elder out of institutional subsidized care with advanced DEMENTIA!
Wishing it were otherwise is not going to change the fact that it TOTALLY changes peoples lives to offer LIVE AT HOME CARE at this Stage - or any stage really.
It is a sad fact that Dad left no provisions for Mum. But that is the reality that we must deal with.
Just say it - you are OK with institutional care for MUM. Don’t try to make it cheap. I’ve compensated for years - and I’m still doing it as I take another shot at getting my business off the ground.
These are strong words - but generosity and kindness seem to be of little value relative to money in this family. Why is this so?
I simply want fairness in caring for our Mother. And I am willing to be fierce in our Mothers interest - as she would be in ours. And I will no longer just ignore both fairness and my own needs to keep peace in this family. [brother] you have long wanted power and in this world you have some - but do not throw it around in the family. Family is built on love - Mum has mostly kept to this - even through the hell of dementia. And I am doing everything in my power to help her keep on this path. Except for brief moments you are not helping me serve Mum...