I avoid my grandma even though she is screaming in pain and needing help all the time. I'm tired. Should I be "working harder?"

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My grandma has a bone in her back that is painful, also diaper sores. Her head and neck are never comfortable on the pillow, she has scoliosis or something. She's NEVER comfortable when she's awake, and right now she is bed-ridden. She's always shouting from the room "help me, help me," sometimes it reminds me of someone screaming from the depths of hell. I go in to help but I cannot get myself to be with her 24/7. I need to get away and do my own thing. When I am with her, I'll do things and then start to leave, and she says "Wait! Do this" or asks a question that I already answered. She's also a very diva-like person and doesn't understand people when they say they're tired. She says "I know, but please help me." I can't make the pain in her back go away, we have no medication. Also she wants to be changed all the time, and I can't do that, I'm sorry I won't do it. Am I wrong to not want to change her all the time (more than 1 time an hour)? I dislike caretaking when I'm not appreciated for what I am doing either. She just expects I will do this, but is not nice to me in return. She doesn't let me take a break. What is going on here, and what should I do?

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bookworm: The time has come for you and your mom to place your grandmother in a nursing home. She is not getting the proper care at home. It's too much for you to do and it's not fair to either of you.

We've shared discussions before. When your grandmother was last hospitalized she decided that she didn't want to come back home. She was getting better treatment and attention in a professional setting and that worked better for her.

You are not wrong to not want to change her all the time and I can understand that hearing her in pain is difficult for you. However, it sounds like she now possibly has bed sores and that her pain is not being managed It's too much for you and not enough for her.

She has assets that now should be used for her care. To keep her home to protect the assets is wrong. I hope you and your mother will act on this quickly and get her the care that she needs. She is a human being and she is suffering more than she needs to or should.

Cattails.
Please, please, give very careful consideration to "What is best for Grandma?" Even if she is an ungrateful argumentative handful, she does not deserve to be in constant pain, to develop bedsores or diaper rash, to be in wet or soiled disposables. THIS IS NOT YOUR FAULT, and I'm not blaming you for any of it, but it really looks like she needs to be where she can get professional round-the-clock care.

Then ask, "What is best for me?" Clearly, from your other posts, it is time for you to have a chance to make your own way in the world and to be independent.

I know that you and mother do not agree on "What is best for Mother?" She thinks preserving Grandma's assets for herself is the best course of action (if I understood an earlier post correctly). You think some things, like health and sanity, are more important than money.

Of course we only see that much of the situation that you've written about. But from that I'd say that a disservice is being done to your grandmother by keeping her at home when she requires more care than she can given there (through no fault of yours). Your mother is doing you a disservice by keeping you in a situation that is clearly beyond your capacity and terribly stressful to you and against your beliefs regarding the relative importance of money in this case. And it sounds like Mom may not even be acting in her own best interests, considering her health.

What should you do? Try this on: You stand up to Mother. You explain that this is not the best situation for her mother, and it is not a good situation for you, and you are giving notice that you are no longer going to be available for this job at the end of the month. She can either hire someone else, or you will help her arrange for Grandma to be moved to a skilled nursing facility. Be polite but firm. You have had plenty of time to stew about this. If you think that keeping her at home to save some money is not the best for Grandma and not the best for you, stand up for your convictions.

Please know that I care about you. This is the advice I'd give to my daughter or granddaughter: Get Grandma into a nursing home if you can, remove yourself from the situation if you can't.

Best wishes to you, Neesa.
Thank you both so much for your support. I just posted on another of my recent threads about being sad about my grandma's pain, that I struggle with mental illness. Yesterday I started experiencing symptoms of my mental illness being triggered. This has happened a LOT to me in the past and I know it leads to hospitalization and then losing at least a year of my life to unproductive recovery because I am mentally unstable. Basically my whole life has been like this until 6 months ago when I accepted Jesus Christ. I finally have stability now and am able to do things I never thought were possible before, like accepting that I'm gay and losing weight and getting job offers. The Lord is trying to work in my life. I need to get away and live my own life and make my own discoveries and grow in the Lord! I have refused to care for grandma now, not just because of beliefs but just for my health, which are all 1 and the same. I have resumed my old life. It's a long story, these past 6 months and it's not just caretaking, but finally things are LOOKING UP!!!! I NEED TO GET OUT.
Do, by all means take care of yourself, but PLEASE take care of Grandma. She needs your help. If you can't do it, please get someone who can. Don't just up & leave her. If something were to happen to her it would be a tragedy. She doesn't deserve to be just left unattended for.She is helpless. CALL ANYONE who can help if you can't!!!!!!! Take care & good luck to your family.
Zoey, don't worry. My mom is taking care of her, and she is working very quickly now on hiring someone through an agency. We are not waiting for Medicaid anymore. We will have someone starting tomorrow; Mom stayed home from work today to take care of Grandma.
I'm glad to hear you have someone who will be caring for your Grandma. Do you live far from your Mom & Grandma. I'm sure she would still like you to visit her even though you won't have to be coming to take care of her anymore. Now that you will just be coming to visit it shouldn't be so stressful for you. Now maybe you will enjoy her company. How old are you?. You were probably just to young to have that responsibility. Now you'll have time to do things young girls should be out doing!!!! You'll see that you can have fun & still care about your Grandma. She'll see that your happier too. Good luck to you honey!! Be good out there,but still have fun. You deserve to have fun with your friends. It's hard to take on grown-up duties when your still young & should be doing all the stuff the other girls & boys are doing.... Don't forget to visit. You'll put a big smile on her face!!! you just wait & see!!!!!! Take care
Zoey, just some background from other posts. Neesa's mother (Grandma"s daughter) is also a part of this picture. In my mind, that is where the responsibility lies for seeing that Grandma has care, not with her young granddaughter who has her own mental health issues to manage. In suggesting that Neesa remove herself from the situation if she can't convince her mother to use a nursing home, I'm not anticipatng abandonment. Mother will have to figure out what to do.

But you are right. If Neesa sees that her Mother isn't stepping up to the plate and seeing that Grandma is well taken care of, Neesa should act on her behalf, perhaps calling the Adult Protection folks. Let's hope it doesn't come to that. That is no indication that Mother does not love Grandma.

Bookworm - Just one question. You say your grandmother is screaming from pain and you don't have any medication for her? Why is this? She most definitely requires pain relievers - please take care of her pain at least with medication. This is a bad situation; but don't let her suffer when something as simple as a pill would help her. Your grandmother needs to be in a nursing home as she is not getting the care she needs. I don't mean to be harsh, but if I were you; I would call Protective Services in your town and have them come out and evaluate. Your mother does not have to know you called. It could be anonymous. No one, elderly or not should be screaming in pain with nothing to help it. Protective Services will evaluate and let your mother know what needs to be done.
OK, BookwormNeesa, this woman is in need of strong pain medication.....asap. Call her physician. Can you find one that makes house calls? Morphine Pump requires a prescription. Another pain med will suffice for now.
Neesa, you are not equipped to handle this patient, so your mother should take charge and do what is necessary to keep this patient from screaming and being in need of basic hygiene tools.
Unless something is done to protect your grandmother and provide her with proper care, Adult Protective Services may become involved. Charges could be filed for neglect and abuse. The assets of this woman cannot be utilized except for her benefit. To "save" them for one's future use is WRONG!. This is a very difficult situation and as a medical social worker, it is obvious to me that the care of this Patient is beyond what you and your mother are able to deal with. No one should be left in a situation with bedsores and pain while other people "save" her assets for themselves. This is horrible and could involve legal ramifications that none of you are considering. When the sores become so bad that she has to be hospitalized, a report of criminal neglect can be filed. PLEASE place this poor woman in a nursinfg home or hospital where she can get the help she needs. I am appalled that this situation is going on and this poor woman is in pain and getting no relief from her suffering. No amount of money or greed is an excuse. In any case, you should not be forced into a situation you cannot handle ewmotionally or physically. Call adult protective services!

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