From the elderly parent's point of view: If you really don't want to care for me then why do you do it?

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Well, I wouldn't if I didn't want to, at least not personally. I would ensure a safe and clean environment, out of decency and obligation. Day-to-day personal contact? Nope, only if I wanted to. My dear mother is a decent, caring person. I think all of us kids have picked that up. But Ma didn't raise any martyrs, bless her heart.
I think your question has an underlying assumption that there are other options and finances to implement those options. I think a lot of people here including me had no viable, safe, financially doable alternative choice in the matter of ensuring the relative we are responsible for is safe and cared for. What I personally wanted was never part of the discussion.
Ms Helen, I think that many people did want to do it when they started out. They didn't really know what they were getting into and how all-consuming the role could become. And now that they have been doing it, perhaps for years, they scarcely have the energy to arrange things so that they can stop.

And I think many people who are doing it because they want to have moments or days when they can't stand it another minute! But that will pass. They come here to vent during that hard time.

People who want to and aren't (at the moment) having a lot of stress from it may not seek out discussion boards at all.

Likewise people who don't want to and haven't may not be seeking out discussion boards.

So what you read on here may look like nobody who is taking care of a parent wants to do it. I don't think that is true at all. It is just the nature of who comes on to these discussion boards and the frame of mind they are in at the time they post.

It is a good question, though, and should stimulate some interesting discussion.

Addie, my heart goes out to you. Caretaking is a demanding, stressful job, and to feel like you are "stuck" in it without having any say in the matter can only make it worse. Are you in the US? I would have thought that virtually anyone could qualify for Medicaid and nursing home care if they could not afford it themselves. Am I niave about that?
mshell, I read on your profile that you're taking care of, what three people? None of them are related is that right? I don't know, it just said 'other' Anyway, if you're not related but are still making sure they're being taken care of, then I'm assuming you have a 'servants heart'. and that in of itself is enough of a reason to reach out to them.

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