My dad is so angry at me all of the time. He says ugly things to me and about me. Most days I can handle it but sometimes like today I blow up at him. He either doesn't understand or doesn't care how he hurts me or maybe a little of both. I try to keep the stress levels down for my mom but sometimes I just have to tell him how I feel and how he is behaving. I have given up my house, my job and most of my friends to care for my parents (which I did willingly) but he tells me daily how worthless I am and how wonderful the other 6 children (who all live out of state) are. These wonderful children that I get compared to have flat out refused to come and help when I have really needed some help. I have called them on several different occasions and been told no each time. I am the one who is here, I am the one who takes him places and I am the one who verbally abused on a daily basis. My heart is broken, I miss the dad I had, and I don't know what to do anymore. My mother is not strong enough to care for him on her own and almost died last winter from the stress. I can't leave her alone with him. Their insurance doesn't cover nursing homes a we only qualify for 8 hours of respite per month. I guess I know the answers to what is happening here, I just feel very alone and unappreciated. No my siblings do not offer any financial help either. I'm tired. I don't know where to go for help. I've talked to every social worker at the VA and talked to their primary insurance for help. There is nothing more they have to offer. I know that I just have to keep on keepin' on. I guess I just wanted to know if there are other people out there that understand what life is like right now for me. I'm not looking for pity. I just needed a place to vent and maybe get some suggestions for how to deal with being the target for all of his anger. How to not take it so personally. Thanks for listening.
I think we need to realize that our parents when they get older are upset at the world in general, that they can't hop out into a car and drive where ever they want to go, they feel like they are trapped, their independence is gone..... so who do they take it out on is the closes grown child... is it fair, heck no.
I use to have such great patience with life in general, until my parents started to age, and in order for my parents to keep their lifestyle, I had to change mine. I found a ton of resentment because my parents had a grand 25+ years of retirement traveling, etc. and they had the responsibility of caring for their own parents.... and here I am now 70 and I don't see any type of retirement, as all this stress has could mega health issues for me. Travel? Forgetaboutit, not happening.
Of course, decades ago our parents never visualize that a grown child would be walking down this path. Never. But as our parents world gets tinier and tinier, they become stubborn to a point where common sense tends to disappear.
Call your State Medicaid office to see if your parents would be accepted into Medicaid. Medicaid would pay for continuing care placement, that is if your parents would accept moving. It's worth checking into.
The truth is that it isn't us in most cases. Sometimes I step out of what is going on emotionally and watch. Arguing back doesn't help anything. Saying No is difficult, too, since we are seen as the willful and bad child who never listens.
I don't understand the anger. It is like they think that if we would only do what they say, then their life would be better. But there is always one more thing to do, so pretty soon our lives are consumed by trying to make theirs better.
When we go out into the world, we act like all is okay. Parent is fine. We are fine. All is good. We protect our family from the bad thoughts of the world. It is so different on the inside. Caregiving children get to see the true ugly. Sometimes people tell me I will be richly rewarded for what I do. I want to tell them "Bite me."
Does your dad qualify for VA Aid and Attendence? Is there a VA NH that he qualifies for?
It sounds to me as though you need to get mom to a Certifed Eldercare Attorney to look into what can be managed.
I would also get dad to a geriatric psychiatrist to see if there are meds that will help with his depression, anxiety and agitation.
I commend you for taking on such a daunting challenge and then getting no assistance from other family members.
I could not do what you do...and despite the abuse you receive constantly, please know that you are a very special hero. All caretakers are, but especially those who do it full time.
The dad you knew has changed, and it is heart breaking. That said, do what you can to preserve your own sense of self worth and sanity. And in my view, it's perfectly ok to turn and walk out of the room or out of the house when his words become too painful to hear.
Free counseling is available at various places. I called the alzheimers.org toll free number one day, was previewed by a volunteer and then put through to a counselor who was very attentive and helpful.
Thanks for sharing your experience...and know that you are not alone. It takes a huge effort to always remember that "it is the disease talking" and not the loved ones we once knew.
We feel wounded and unappreciated, and sometimes we lash out. We're human. It happens.
Vent here anytime, know that you are doing an extraordinary thing for your parents, and there are free resources out there to help you cope.
I live by the advice I once read on a caretaker site: Don't let this disease destroy you, too. It isn't easy, but it has helped me to remember to just walk away now and then when my inner child and/or my adult self feels wounded.