I used to think I was the "strong" one in the family. Everyone always turned to me in times of need because I could always hold it together. I can't anymore. It's only been about 6 weeks of caring for my Dad and I am completely at my wit's end.

The resentment and guilt (all magnified by this situation) are almost too much to bear.

I'm approaching the third anniversary of my baby brother's suicide, my BF and I are taking a "break" as a result of this fiasco and I just feel alone. I'm gaining weight because I don't have the time or energy to prepare the foods I usually eat, so I suffer through the horrible greasy cafeteria food Dad likes (or he refuses to eat). I'm EXHAUSTED.

I think I have the flu but can't afford to be out of work, so through my aching body and aching heart, I'm completely done. I can't stop crying... I'm completely miserable.

I miss the days when I would wake up at 5 am to go to the gym or jog. I miss hiking on weekends or just lounging around with my BF watching redbox.

The longer this goes on the more I really don't like my dad. HELP!!!

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Thanks for all the responses everyone! Well, we did find an independent living facility, but my Dad REFUSES half of the amenities.

1) He still wants to do adult daycare, but we can't do both. The VA covers two days plus transportation to and from the center, but he has to take a shower both of those days as part of the deal. He REFUSES to bathe himself so trying to get him to do it at the adult center is a futile battle. He also doesn't like to wait for the bus, and wants me to drive him back and forth. The center is over an hour away from my office in traffic.

2) I've encouraged him to take the independent living center bus to the store, Walmart, etc. but he REFUSES. He wants to go when HE wants to go and expects me to drive him, and I just don't have the time to do it.

3) Though they offer continental breakfast every morning at both the independent living and adult day centers, Daddy doesn't like continental breakfast and wants me to make bacon and eggs or pancakes every morning. For a while, I was stopping at fast food restaurants (I know that's bad), but that was putting me behind, so I bought the microwave meals (Equally as bad), but he doesn't like those either. His solution: refuse to eat.

I'm at my wits end. I know I can't keep going on like this but what can I do? Every time I put my foot down, we get into these huge arguments and he accuses me of taking his money and being mean.

Yes, I'm an attorney, but I'm not rich! I'm still paying back school loans. What else can I do?

This is a woman who had her mother move in and then had difficulty moving her out. She was finally able to get her mother in an Assisted Living. I thought of her because like you, by bringing your father into your home, you just made yourself responsible for your father in the medical and legal eyes. Read her experiences and the steps she had to do. Note - how she got her mother to pay for the 'benefit' of living in her home.

And this note on Boundaries/Detachment makes so much sense. Also provided by a poster here. Setting boundaries/detachment is an ongoing, head butting event....


Accept that others are responsible for their own choices
Anger –deal with it in a healthy way
Blame –don’t blame and don’t accept blame
Consequences – face them and see that others experience them
Decide what you are willing to do and what you are not willing to do
Detachment is not a feeling so much as a choice of behaviours, though the feelings should follow the behaviours. Detachment means you can maintain positive behaviours towards to others –kindness, compassion,
Don’t enable the unhealthy behaviours of others
Focus on yourself
Forgive, but don’t forget the need to protect yourself
Grieve the relationship as it was, the hopes that you had, the mistreatment you received,
Refuse to be manipulated e.g, emotional blackmail
Respond, don’t react
Separate yourself - physically, emotionally, spiritually, mentally, socially from others behaviours/feelings
Set boundaries
Say “No”
Space –create it between you and them
Try not to take the behaviours personally
Treat others and yourself with love and dignity
You can only control /change yourself – your emotions, your behaviours –do not take responsibility for the others feelings or behaviours

Realise it is a process and that you will make mistakes and get “sucked” in, but that you can learn from your mistakes.

Try very hard to set boundaries. Go somewhere quiet, in your bedroom with the door locked, turn on the music to tune him out and wear a headphone that covers your ears. Then take out your pen and paper and start brainstorming. Put down your goals for you and your father. Take one goal from each one. Those you will work on. For example, goal for you, learn more about narcissistic parent. Goal for him, give consequences, when your father is Mean to you. Etc...

Do research on how other people have dealt with a parent like yours. Get ideas and try the same with him. Ideally, it would be best if he was in meds to help deal with his meanness.

It would have been best if you had NOT brought him into your home. When his doctor told you that he can no longer live on his own, this would have been the best time to find 24hrs in home care (and have it failed). Then the next option would have been an alternate living in which they have a lock down room (when he becomes disruptive.) Difficult for that too.

There's a thread here that I found when I first found this site. I'm using the kindle and so it's slow going. It's time for me to get up and start our day. I won't be able to come back and give you the discussion thread I'd like for you to read.. gotta go to work and I usually am too tired when I come home. I will try to give it to you today.

I have nothing new to add to what has already been said. I agree with the others, please get help. SOON!

I brought my mother to live with me last April and I have been just where you are now. This past Saturday is the first time I asked for help from anyone other than my brother. Thankfully, my first cousin was glad to take Mama for the afternoon while I attended to some other business.

Ask friends, family, and anyone you know that cares for you and your dad for help.

Your dad is going to outlive you. Then, where will he go? Wherever that is, it is passed time that he makes that move. There will never be a need, if you are there to take care of him. No one can do the duties of a full time staff, by themselves. Are you even a nurse or nurse's aid? Quit. Give notice. You really did try.

Tinyblu, the first few months are so hard. If it is this difficult after 6 weeks, it may be a good sign that caregiving is not a strong suit. You can take care of your father without having him live with you. Does he have resources that he could afford assisted living? Chances are that he is also feeling the strain of the new living conditions. Having his own place may be more appealing to him. I would definitely discuss it with him.

I am so sorry to see you going through this. Please call everyone you know and ask for help. There has to be someone that will listen, Do you have a pastor? Everyone on this site has been where you are at one time and we are all rooting for you. Please get HELP tomorrow. My prayer are with you.

You sound completely burned out and in need of more than just meds for the flu. I'm sure you are the strong one in your family, but that does not mean you are super human and able to take care of someone all by yourself. That kills about 1/3 of caregivers before the person they are caring for dies and the rest end up with very poor physical, mental and financial health.

Does your dad have any financial resources that could be used to hire him some caregivers for home.

Are your siblings wiling to have a family meeting to discuss a plan so that you don't have to bear this alone?

I see from your profile that your dad has lung disease and is living in your home. How old is he? How did he end up living with you?

You speak of not being able to afford being out of work. What kind of job do you have?

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