Tip for appeasing oh, so helpful sibling.

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Much like many other folks on here my brother and I deal with our sister who does next to nothing for our 78 year old Mom with sever dementia. This sister calls Mom two or three times a week and harasses, belittles, and humiliates Mom when Mom can't answer questions such as what she ate, did she take her pills, who has she talked to ect..
My brother lives with Mom and does the Lion's share of the work, I go over everyday to give his some help, support and relief. We have both been frustrated with our sister upsetting Mom with her questions and then anger about the fact Mom can't answer.
So after many arguments with said sister about calling one of us and just talking to Mom about things in general... my brilliant brother bought a small-medium size white board and propped it up on a chair near Moms seat on the sofa.
It lists today's date, Mom's weight, AM and PM pills taken, food eaten, if a shower was given, lists folks Mom has talked to, upcoming appointments, bills paid and any other important information.
When sister calls now she asks Mom to look at the board and tell her about her day. Although my brother and I are still fairly resentful of how little she does (her excuse is that Mom was her best friend for 45 years and now "she isn't there anymore") whatever she isn't there anymore for me either but I have a relationship with who she is now.
Didn't mean to start venting just wanted to pass along a tip.

Jennifer

4 Comments

At least she calls. Obviously not the one you would call in an emergency, but she calls. Sounds like she has a touch of pre-dementia herself. Yup that's how it starts, endless inane questions.
It is nice she calls - and now the calls don't upset Mom. She lives 5 minutes from Mom but can't be bothered to come by as it "upsets" her to see Mom like this. I've tried to tell her how lucky we are. Mom is nice, kind, loving and does what she is asked to do.
In former posts I discussed my brothers belief that he could "train" Mom. He finally understands dementia and how lucky we are... all due to this website. He is doing such a good job and between the two of us and our other brother who helps a lot (he is DPOA) we do fine and the caretaker brother gets the support and breaks he needs. If only our sister would get on board and not be ticked off at Mom all the time....I guess I should just count my blessings. This site has been a life saver and even though I don't post often both my brother and I read it everyday.
I would remind my sister that the phone calls are about Mom not Her! If she is checking up on you and brother and has a problem with the care you are providing then she can come over and you will gladly let her help out.

Basicly stop upsetting Mom or I will not let her speak with you!
Jennifer,
Your right, the board idea is brilliant! Thank you for passing that idea along.
It is nice that you give credit where credit is due and appreciate what your brothers are doing for your mom. I don't very often hear of sons doing the "lions share". It's wonderful that you all get along and work together. As far as your sister goes...I have come to terms with, by way of post and articles (Carol's) on AgingCare, that not everyone can or wants to care for a loved one. Many excuses used are all very familiar. It would be nice if those who cannot or do not want to help would just be honest. It would be easier to process.
~Best to you and your family!

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