I'm the mother now. Single women taking care of both her parents.

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Emotionally and physically exhausted am I. I'm a single woman, taking care of both parents (one a stroke survivor, the other living w/heart disease and an uncle of diminished mental capacity. Brother, sister live out of state and barely even call to speak to them much less ask me if I need any help or anything.

I'm hearing a lot lately from the older generation of aunts and uncles, that it's a good thing I never married and/or had children since I'm now the "mother".
I hate when they say that, I really do. I'm no one's mother!!! I'm a daughter and a niece. Make that a burnt-out daughter and niece who is fast reaching her limit and have for the past few weeks daydreamed what would happen if she went out one day and never came back.

I'd never do it of course but I never thought I'd get to the point of even wondering about leaving these people I love in such need. But, what about me?

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Beta, I love the fact that you have a church family to rely on. You know, in the old days the church played a major part in society. They would step in and help the needs of the whole community, not just their own members. The whole West was developed and civilized by schools and churches. What happened to the community church reaching out to their neighbors? Our little community church still does, but it seems like it's in the minority these days. Now days it's the mega church, making it a lot harder to get to know people in amongst a thousand people. I should have been born in the 1800's I guess. But then maybe not, not before the flush toilet at least.
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Hi invisible. I have never been married, either, I do not have children. I take care of my mother. There are many married women on this site, and they have children, and they do the same. We are a group of very different women, and we take care of our ill relatives because we are the only ones in our respective families who have taken the burden on ourselves. Very few of us are helped by their siblings. It seems we follow the same pattern - married or not.
This site has been very useful to me. Stay in touch!
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That is an ideal one truly. When do we ever here it has been dumped on "US" as in more than one person? Never. It is so often a single, un- childed person who every one assumes has no life and therefore should be happy to be the designated go to for all the onerous tasks they are just "TOO BUSY" in their full lives to take care of. Right. I understand full schedules but people choose what they will and wont do.
Like that saying: "No one notices house work till you DON'T DO IT." It is The " invisible person" who becomes all too visible when there is a major chore to be undertaken and taken away from others. Maybe we do have more time, maybe we are "Just Here" but still, we can't be 24/7 on such a draining task as full time care giving. We took On and took In the responsibility that should be a whole families duty on our own and when we need help????... Well, who becomes invisible then?........
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i know its hard---my mom of 79 with dementia/alzheimers has been here since feb of this year- she was living in her house with brother that never left home-hes 47. when i went to visit her she was always in pjs, smelled of poop, and was depressed and slept til 4pm. she had stopped driving and was home bound for 3yrs. I could not stand to see her. I lived 96 miles away . My fbrother worked so she was alone alot- she broke her arm. she said she wanted to die in the house- i said house dont love u i do. she finally agreed to move in. my son moved out on sat. she movede in on sunday.americas funniest videos changed her from sad to happy. My church is great - i can go to lunch , bible study , and visit friends and she is accepted. how many girlfriends would want you to bring your mom to the Elephant Bar for lunch. Thank you God that I can have a life- and so can you. ! They also watch my mom so husband and i can go out and my sona and daugter in law live around he corner and they are very helpful!!!
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Invis,
We are her for each other.
Often sibs are in denial. My brother is and I can't blame him a bit. Our oarents are/were far from ideal and many of us are trying to lose the baggage while caring for parents that did not/don't care for us. I hope this is not the case for you.
Long ago one daughter (esp. Irish) was expected to stay single to care for their parents when they became incapacitated. This is a cold and hard thing to accept. Your other relatives may be thinking along this line and I am sorry if they feel this way toward you.
Understand that this is NOT your fate or your value. Please disregard what the other elderly family members say.
You are entitled to a life also. Please try to arrange to have some "you time". What you are doing is very noble, true and good; but please tend to yourself also.
GOD give you protection, stregnth, peace and comfort.
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My goodness, my goodness! You all have lifted my little sad self in ways I didn't know existed. Thank you, so much for the encouraging and warm words I'm not ashamed to say I didn't know I needed to hear them until I did.

I really don't know about the sibling thing. To me, if my bro or sis were in my shoes, I'd definitely be right in there with whatever I could and should do.

Again, thank you all so very much. This is a community I will definitely be a part of and hope I can encourage you along the way as well.
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Always, Too bad there isn't a rewind on life like there is on the VCR. Bummer.
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IO:

You might think you're invisible, but we see you and share your pain. Of course it's okay to vent here girl! Sacrifices have come and gone unnoticed, yet you're still making them for the people dearest to your heart until you decide otherwise.

Some people, perhaps, might think you're a fool but definitely not a quitter. Your resilience amazes me (I'm getting a little misty-eyed here), and everyone in this forum should take their hats, wigs, and hairpieces off to you. ... Because you're living proof of a true caregiver.

My love always,

-- ED
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naheaton, I actually was writing in the past tense. The conversation with sis happened over a year ago.She said I insulted her and no longer speaks to me. Convenient, I think.
Mom, with help from her paid caregiver, disowned me earlier this year,revoked my POA,etc. She no longer speaks to me either or to my family. She doesn't have dementia, she's just always preferred anybody over me. She told me many times that she'd get me.
Can we say "dysfunctional family" and "big mess" and "lawyers"?
WHEN everyone was talking, sister sent mom one check and told her to take the caregiver to lunch as thanks from her. That caregiver should be honored, sis probably still has the allowances she got when she was 12, she's so tight.
Sis flew in to see dad many years ago when he had a near fatal heart attack. The next time she saw him was 8 years later at his funeral.
I understand anyone who admits they can't handle the unpleasant. It's the ones who lie or refuse at the expense of others I have difficulty dealing with.
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195austin, I guess in your case, open communication is really important with your family. I know with my sister and I when we deal with our mother, we have to rat her out to each other, because she never tells the same story twice. She will tell me one thing and my sister another. So sis and I always have to compare what she says in order to get the 'rest of the story'.
Also my mother-in-law does that too. She tells me stuff and then says, 'oh don't tell such and such what I said'. So what do I do? I tell such and such what she said! And guess what? She has told such and such the very same thing about me. I hate mind games. But in her case with her memory in the crapper, I don't think she's being malicious, just forgetful of who she says what to. I think ratting out your mother on a regular basis to your siblings is crucial for all of you.
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