Not really a question, but wanted to share something positive that may have come from my stepping away from my dad's caregiving.
After Dad went into a NH in Nov I lessened my role with him to deal with the extreme burnout of caring for him in my home. He still called constantly to complain about literally everything. After my MIL, whom I was close with, passed away a month ago I asked my mom and sister to take over his calls. (*note my parents have been divorced nearly 20 years but have become cordial in the last 5) He would still try to call me with manipulative voicemails left because he was upset I wasn't available to him anymore.
Then...2 weeks ago, my iPhone tanked. Can't afford a new one for a few weeks. Dad literally cannot contact me. At first he raged at my mom about this. Said I've abandoned him, that I'm ignoring the "abuse" at the NH ("abuse" being a broken soda machine and the food not being restaurant quality). His bad behaviors towards staff have kept him from being received into AL facilities. We're talking about throwing food at the walls and staff, threatening bodily harm, threatening hunger strikes, refusing services like PT and showers. As far as all testing and doctor visits have shown, he is fully mentally competent and capable. He is just physically disabled, entitled and a narc.
During one of these raging conversations he was having with my mom, she finally had a "Come-To-Jesus" talk with him. That I cannot rescue him, I am fully unavailable. That the only person who can change his outlook on life and how people respond to him is him. Treating the staff badly makes the staff not want to treat him kindly, in the same way that you don't treat the people who handle your food badly. Acting like a 3 year old when you're a competent 71 year old is fully immature and won't make people want to be around or help. He went radio silence for 2 days...said he was just going to stop eating, stop talking to anybody and just die. She told him that would be his choice.
Well something clicked! He called my mom 2 days ago to say that he's contacted a Medicaid ombudsman about some shady things the social worker was doing. He'd had a meeting with the NH director. Dad said he's changed to having more positive interactions with staff and noticed they are kinder to him. He allowed showers again, and PT has returned. He is applying to get into a VA LTC facility in the area. It's like, I had to leave the picture completely and someone else had to tell him all the things I've been telling him for years before he decided to start doing these things for himself.
I'm really hoping things stay this way. It might be better that I stay fully disconnected (with the exception of moving his things from my home to wherever he lands) since it makes him more productive in his own life! I had felt a little guilty about it, but he's showing some progress in an area I haven't seen since I took on his care nearly 5 years ago. Just something I wanted to share with you all!