Dear elderly dad and mom.

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Now that you are in your 80's and your health is declining, you are probably wondering will I be there for you in your declining years. As your daughter, my conscience and beliefs would never allow me to do otherwise. Though I was not raised with these traits, my adult life taught me what nuturing and caring was all about. Now I ponder about being the caring daughter and compare it to you as parents of my childhood. Mom, did you care enough about me when you were too busy nuturing a marital affair with another married man? Dad, were you so overwrought with mom's indifference toward you, that I would be a good replacement as a surrogate wife instead of finding someone else to meet your needs? I was just a little girl, too young to understand infidelity and the needs of a husband. I am now your adult daughter, a wife, mother, grandmother and a life encountering aging elderly parents. I will try and care for you as I do my husband, children and grandchildren. It is who I am, but will always wonder who you were.

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littletonway, Debralee is not a better person than you are ... she is a different person. You each are special and good in your own ways.
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JessieBelle,
You are right about the wounds never healing. I have had a lot of therapy and the love of my husband and children. I will always make sure my parents are cared for, but I have not encountered yet their total needs. They are still independenly living. When the time comes for more, I am not sure what I can handle. Caring from a distance is the best choice, but because of whom I am will it give me peace of mind?
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Littletonway, thank you for your kind words. It took a lot to post this, but the love of my husband and children taught me that caring is more important than past indiscretions. Knowing this, I have made sure my children will never have to worry about taking care of me. I want them to have their own lives and will do whatever it takes to make sure they do not become the sandwich generation delemma that I am facing.
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Debralee, I have been following much of what you wrote here and I would not recommend personally providing care for your parents. Your wounds seem to still be open. Cargiving does not heal; it reopens wounds. As littletonway said, you can see that they are cared for but from a distance.
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My heart goes out to you. Obviously, you are a much better person than I. Despite your dreadful childhood, you were able to survive and have what sounds like a very good life. I don't know you but I am very proud of you!

Yes, I would see that they are cared for but from a distance.

God bless!
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