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I've posted before about in-law care-giving. Aged mother in law, lives in same town.


We are at the tail end of a visit from sister in law from several states away. Sister in law has been here for 3 weeks caring for her mother. A much welcome respite.


It had been discussed, prior to her arrival here on the scene, she would be talking it over with her mother, to try and get her mom to come up to her home, for a stay of maybe a few months.


This, in my opinion, is absolutely essential, as I am expecting twin grand-children, due in about 1 month (if they don't come sooner, as is the case a lot of times with multiples pregnancies). The expectant mother also lives locally here, and has a 4 year old daughter. I will be on that front, helping .. as much as is needed. And not on the front with mother in law and care-giving, and have made that as obvious and apparent as I know how to make it. It would be great if mother in law would agree to go to her daughter's home (several states away) for a period of a few months .. and allow me the latitude to put my energies where I want them to be, on my daughter who will have had a c-section .. and my grand-daughter (4 years old) and new twin babies.


Nothing doing. Mother in law has dug in her heels, and will not hear of it, going to stay with her daughter for any period of time.


What are her reasons?


In mother in law's defense ... her daughter ... I don't even know how to describe it. I will say that when her daughter comes here to visit, she all but breathes for her mother and if she could find a way to do that, she'd do that too. She is the most nervous nelly, never sit down - ever ... worry wart, do everything, all the time .. person that I've ever encountered.


A great example, as I was taking her to the airport yesterday for her departure, . I reached into the fridge to grab myself a bottled water and shut the fridge and turned to walk away, as I've done for all of my 50 plus years living on this earth .. and she said to me, "Oh make sure that fridge shut". WTH???? Like I don't know how to shut a fridge? That's just a small, very small slice of what she is ... how she is.


She is so very hyper-vigilant, seeing to every minute details down to it's finest most minuscule point, fine tooth comb, questioning every point along the way, "should we do thus and so, but maybe if we do thus and so, then such and such will happen, maybe we should do it thus and so .. but then so and so might happen, maybe we shouldn't do thus and so, but do "x" "y" and "z" instead, but if we don't do it that way then ..........", on and on and on and on it goes. And usually in hyper warp speed, as to every single friggin thing.


If her mother moans .. "what's wrong mother?, why did you moan, are you alright?".


Mother: "Yes, I'm fine, I was just sighing out loud".


Sister: "Why did you sigh? Are you hurting, are you sure you're alright, why are you sighing what's the matter?"


Mother: "For God's sake __________________, I was just sighing, .. calm down, I'm fine".


Sister: "Are you sure, .. because if something is wrong you need to tell me".


Mother: "Everything is fine, I'm fine".


Sister: "Are you sure, we did a lot yesterday, did we do too much, maybe we shouldn't of gone to two doctors in one day .. was that too much for you, are you too tired now, maybe we need to move those other doctor appointments so we won't have two in one day, is that too much for you, for one day .. is that why you were sighing .. what's wrong, are you sure you're alright".


Hopefully that kinda gives a little bit of a snapshot of what goes on when sister is in the ring directing things.


So in mother in law's defense.. I do get it, why she wouldn't be chomping at the bit to go to her daughter's home.


BUT ....


The only experience she has with her daughter, in the last years as mother in law has aged and been unable to go anywhere much, has been the daughter coming here, periodically, for periods of about 3 weeks at a stretch. When her daughter comes here, she moves heaven and earth for her mother and then some, and doesn't sit down, doesn't stop .. the WHOLE ENTIRE TIME.


Is there a possibility maybe (as I said to mother in law, when she expressed that isn't happening - talking to me - her going to her daughters .. ever) .. could it be possible that maybe if you would go to where she lives .. she'd be more busy managing her own life in that setting than your's and she would get out of your backside .. and not be as hyper-drive-vigilant as you experience in her, when she's here, could that be possible.


The daughter is retired, lives several states away. Does come here, generally, every few months .. and stays for a period of about 3 weeks at a stretch. I wish I could make a list of everything the daughter did when here this last time, but it would take up the whole character allotment:

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Dorker ... 'twas I who defined them as "basically good people." BUT ... to be honest, I like YOUR definition a *heckuva* lot better. Just didn't want to stomp too hard.

Right now, I'm living with some tough consequences that stem from my own husband's lack of action/decision-making, and am more than a bit crispy around the edges. Didn't want to project my own frustrations too much.

Sometimes, lying is The Right Thing To Do. And you're doing it. Please know I'm cheering you on!
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Whoo-Hoo Dorker, your recent post sounded Strong and Determined! Hold strong to those boundaries as you can! I am glad to hear Dd getting out and about, her kind act of visiting her Grandmother no matter how stressful with kiddies in tow, and being of service to her shows real improvement, she could be home with the covers pulled up over her eyes, but she's out and about, that's Great!

Your response to your husband sounds so great too, I hope he is finally Getting how important it is to keep you out of his sad feelings on the subject of his Mother, no sense in both of you being down in the dumps over it, and it would do him a world of good for him to go and talk with someone else about his unfounded guilt, he has been a pretty decent son to her over the years, and most definitely could have been worse. Men, can't live with um, can't shoot um!

I don't blame you for needing to step back in the hands on care of your Dad, OMG, I know I couldn't take caring for someone with Dementia and all it's problems, they need more help and if stepping back helps him to come to that conclusion, then that is help in itself.

Keep on Keeping On!
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Oh and someone had asked, .. and I never answered. When is SIL ever coming back this way.

The thinking at this point is *maybe* the last two weeks of October, she hopes.

The hold up has been . of course, her daughter was to marry . and so . that was beginning of August. She was involved .. somewhat on that front. And, ... her husband developed some mysterious problem in his hip. After much investigation, it turned out to be some ligament or something and so he is doing 4 weeks of PT . taking him thru the end of September. Some other problem they were addressing with her husband's teeth, not sure what, a crown that went bad or implant or something. And ... into October, . they have been dealing with, for months .. their basement .. and it leaking .. I guess the walls were breached (block construction), ..???... I don't know.

Way back when MIL was there, .. she had workers in to take all the paneling off the walls . and go at those leaks and seal them .. and some didn't hold well, so having them back . some other leaks that developed . and getting those sealed.

Now, that seems to be all finally finished, but now time to put the dry wall back (not going back in with paneling) . and get that all sanded and finished and painted and the flooring in the basement replaced.

All that to transpire over the next few weeks . and part of that, the guy that does some of this work, going on a 10 day vacation and not available part of that time.

She says she *hopes* .. *maybe* .. the last two weeks of October to be here.

That too, will be a relief once it gets off of us.

Why don't we just go empty MIL's home . and her not here . oh well, snooze ya loose. Some of what is in MIL's house, she will want .. I don't know specifically what, she doesn't know specifically what.

But that too, a source of DH's sadness. He is the one charged with going there periodically to look it over and/or repair anything critical that needs attention. It saddens him, every time he goes there, to that big empty house that is SO his mom . and he SO wishes she could still be there.

The sooner that is all dispensed with . and no longer having to go there . the better for all.
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CTTN: No, I begged off the other day in conversation with him. Lied, told him I have to work. I do work this week, but not on Friday. But he doesn't have to know that.

I knew, .. I've had my limit as to his wife .. and so ... negated my participation in above.
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Dorker, do you have chemo taxi duty this Friday?
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(cont'd)

clearer than I know how to make it. And you can't, you still work for a living . and aren't retired and while you "SAY" .. you wish you were independently wealthy and could just take care of her, make that your sole focus . you had ample opportunity when she did live at home . and on her own . to do just that .. as in . put aside your churching and hunting . and go take care of her. So your words .. "I wish I could just be independently wealthy and just .. I'd take care of her". They ring hollow, experience at all this says something quite different.

So .. take your sad laments as to her whole setting and predicament at this point in her life .. and .. talk to a professional or don't .. up to you .. but I can't keep hearing it.

Hopefully some of that too is stemmed.

DD went to see her the other day with kids in tow, . .as it was said, to "cheer her up". It sounds like, from what DD said, (who is tough as nails usually) .. it was not a good situation in that you have 2 two yo's . and running amok . and trying to keep them from getting into everything . and an old woman who really is clueless that this is just .. it's a lot of work . for DD . and ya know . a DD who could've stayed home . and had her kids in the closed environment there . and not had to chase them down . and out of things they don't need to get into. And MIL apparently had a pee accident while DD was there . and nobody came . they called, but nobody came . so DD took it upon herself to help get that all remedied . but all the while two yo's running amok .. and trying to police that, keep MIL from falling . as she tried to clean her up and change her . and so forth. Not something DD will be eager to be party to a whole lot, and who can blame her.

This whole thing . it has left me battered and on the ropes .. I mean it. The whole thing with so much .. so much cropping up as to others and their problems . has left me gasping for air on the ropes and in a funk . I can't seem to pull up out of.

I can't go anywhere right now, as I'm working those clinics some in the coming weeks. I will though, maybe sometime in October, scoot away ..
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Yes, I can .. and I will "get away" .. in the coming weeks. Can't do so right now, as I have some work assignments to attend to in the coming weeks.

Someone defined it as I'm surrounded by basically good people . that maybe have their realities a bit skewed. I would define it that I am surrounded by people who are selfish and fail to see the impact of their skewed reality on other people.

No, there isn't a bit of remorse in me, that I would take an approach going forward to "LIE" . and I will. I will LIE . when the truth sounds better, going forward.

I know, thru and thru .. I just cannot be subject to that environment . the dementia . the squabbling and bickering between the two .. and out right yelling . and screaming and cursing. It's . too much for me to deal with. Too much. I won't subject myself to it. I can't "make" my dad sit up and take note that this is not a healthy situation for either of them, her unable to care for him . and him unable to care for himself. I can't make him change their setting.

While my makeup and chemistry is that of someone who can't say . to someone in dire straights ... "No, I've told you before, I cannot be around your wife for any extended period of time, the answer is no". I cannot say that to someone calling in distress. I just can't do that, it's not in me. Even though it wouldn't of been the first time that's been said to him, in calmer more conversational tones.

I can and I will "LIE". "Gee, sorry got the g'kids right now .. can't help ya". Or "gee, I have been really under the weather here, with a stomach bug, best I not be in your midst at this point". Or, . "gee, I'm sitting with a friend who has a family member in poor health at the moment" . or any other number of "lies/excuses".

Maybe he will ultimately have to decide his set up is not tenable . maybe not. But at this point, it's about self preservation.

As to the MIL front .. hopefully in my having expressed to SIL last week, that we have enough on our plates, and can't be concerned with her mom's dropped soap, or knocked over bottle of shampoo, or . they didnt' come get her for her hair appt .. and she missed it. Just . be more discerning .. that which you have as your sole focus . in your mom's happiness or not .... is not our sole focus here. Hopefully some of that has been stemmed, as I haven't heard anything further on that front, as to incidents that are, in the end, . not even something that should rate any note at all.

As to DH .. hopefully he too now gets it and understands .. yep I got it, the first few months or your sadness and despair as to your mom, how sad it makes you, . and even beyond that, suggesting you should maybe talk to someone about it all, . but you haven't chosen to do that .. I get it, it makes you sad. I get that. I hear ya .. but I can't change it. No one can. Your mom was the beneficiary of being able to stay in her beloved home with all of us jumping like trained circus animals to her need, for longer than should've been the case. That is a given! Now, .. she has to be in a setting where . yea .. she messes her adult diaper and no one comes quick enough . yea, . she's subject to the emotional outburst of a roomie that isn't quite with it .. yea . she's subject to the folks sitting in the commons area .. that are not altogether with it . she's subject to foods she doesn't like. I can't fix that either. Neither can you. You, if you aren't satisfied with her setting . are free to go find a setting you find more suitable . you haven't done that. I can't keep hearing about it .. bottom line . she does have to be in a setting that provides her around the clock care.

She is not ambulatory .. she has to be helped to bathe .. should be asking for help to toilet but doesn't . (says they don't come) .. and so she falls . trying to do it herself .. who is gonna lift here and help her here? I've made that
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Dorker, the fact that you cried all night and the next day is an important sign that you have reached your limit. Can you get away like others have already suggested? Can you go visit your mother for a while?

I can really see how you went to the ER on Saturday evening. It was an emotional time, with the discussion between you, H, DD and her husband. You were caught off-guard. And then the next morning when you were awakened after just a few hours of sleep to clean up the chitapalooza, you were caught off-guard once again.

I LIKE your resolve to have a ready answer for your father when he calls for you to do his bidding from now on...a white lie (or therapeutic fiblet, as we call it here). He is a taker, and the more you do for him, the more he will demand (as he's showing you now). You have to preserve your own health and sanity! It may be difficult the first few times (because you are such a helping sort), but it will get easier each time. And your father will be forced to do something about his situation, which he would never do as long as he knew he could call you and you would help so that they wouldn't have to change their living situation.

It seems that DD is doing better, and of the three situations (DD, your father, MIL), that is the one that's top priority. I also like that you spoke up to H that he needs to talk to someone ELSE about his sadness and guilt over MIL's facility placement. Good job!

I know you CAN just say no to your father, because you have drawn and enforced boundaries so well with MIL since you first came here 27 months ago. You can do it again!

Keep us updated!
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I've followed every post on this thread, and I'll post occasionally, usually about some practical thing.

But here ... Dorker? Your reaction is not only human. It's Right On.

You are surrounded by people who are basically good people, but who also (each in their own way) keep a tenuous hold on reality. Their make-believe impinges on your very real life.

Perhaps ... if you were able to take a short vacation from ALL of them - tough, I know - they would be forced to take a firmer grasp on reality. To some degree, at least.
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Remember a while back when I used the analogy of my three dogs following me into the bathroom - each expecting to be pet and ear scratched? And, I’ve only got two frickin’ hands - but more to the point - I’d like to be alone once in a while when taking care of business.

I used this analogy cause this is what it’s come down to - for you and in a much more serious and stressful way. But - it was just an analogy.

If I shut the bathroom door, they stand out in the hall whimpering and crying AND scratching the door - which ruins the door AND pizzes me off. Both the door and not being able to pee in peace.

While I don’t think “shutting the door” is a good idea in any of the situations you’ve described, I do think you can choose who to pet. And, that’s exactly the point you’re now describing. Dh? No. MIL? No.
Dad? No. DD? Probably a good idea to keep an eye on that one.

BUT. Do not think of it as lying. Not when it comes to preserving your own state of mind and physical health. Its commonly referred to here as “therapeutic fibs”. But this time the therapy is for you! Nothing wrong with that. Not in my book.
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Dorker, you have reached your limit, for sure. It is past time that you put yourself first, no matter how difficult that may be to accomplish. Have you given any thought to getting away, taking time off to visiting a friend or relative, or your Mom's place, someone who is fun to be around and let your family deal with their own issues for a while, it really might do you some good, to get off the "merry go round" as they say?

I know there have been times in my life where I have just had to get away for a day or two, even if it was just to a sisters house, just to get away from it all.

My hope is that you can take some time for yourself if you would like, to regenerate and come back feeling better, it does the body and your mind good to rest and relax, even if only a couple of days. Shopping, movies, meals out, you need a break from all of the Crazies, you really do! Nothing will fall apart in only a couple of days away. Sometimes enough is enough, so Do take care of yourself!
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Rainmom, thank you, I did hear you, and I get it.
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Dorker - Of course you can't care anymore. Your sympathy/caring tank is completely empty because EVERYONE wants a piece of you- non-stop, and you as a caring person keep giving and giving until there's nothing left to give. So, please let them care for themselves. If they can't, they can find someone else to help them. You, Dorker, need a long break to refill your tank.
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(cont'd)

Nope .. I will just lie. I've been forthright and up front and honest . about where I stand .. (and my fault I bent that boundary) .. and he hasn't heard it. So now, I will lie.

I wish I could stress and articulate . just how .. I hate to say the word traumatizing . because that's not the right term .. I'm not some shrinking violet that cannot be in the sight of stresses. That's not the right term. But I spent . yesterday and the night before it . after all that saga . .. literally in tears.

A lot of it, . at the feet of that scene . that I found myself stuck in . cleaning up poo . not once but 2 x's . and them arguing . and her dementia at it's finest . just .. it was (not the right term) but traumatizing.

It was also the culmination of .. it's . .as I put it before .. I go from one blazing raging fire to another . it seems anymore. Never able to put out . any one single fire of the many burning.

I mean . last week it was the DD saga . that one really threw me off my axis. The week before that . it was poor poor MIL that got cussed out by her room mate . and of course, DH falling into the pit of despair with his poor poor mom . who is now so despairing that someone must go and hold her hand and "there there dear" . and DH did so . and coming home from there, . bordering on himself, sad . and despair, but also anger . that his poor poor mom . has to be in that setting.

The week before that . it was DH himself in the throes of 2 visits back and forth to the ER . with his own constitution issues.

I could go on and on . suffice it to say . it's running from one fire and tamping it out, to another and that is honest to GOD what it feels like, to be in my shoes.

Spent yesterday . and the night before in tears. As I said to DH ... "this can't be what my life has become . it can't be . there is absolutely no happiness anywhere to be found .. it's run . put out this fire, run put out that fire . and .. it can't be all there is, there is not one single thing to look forward to".

I have made up my mind, I no longer run to dad's fires. I will lie. He doesn't understand honesty . cuz I've da&m sure done that . in spades .. .so I will lie.

I won't run to his fires anymore. I won't put myself in that predicament.

I also told DH ... as to his poor poor mom and his laments on that topic . knock it off . go find a professional to talk to, I can't keep being your sounding board on that topic . it is weighing on me, and I have more than enough to deal with, knock it off .. find a way to deal with it .. your mom cannot live here .. I cannot care for her, and I won't . so lamenting her poor poor plight that she has to live in that "GOD FORSAKEN PLACE" and falling into pits of despair . right along with her, .. go find a better setting yourself, go get professional help for you to come to terms with it, I don't know . but stop bringing it home . stop it".

I have never . in all our married lives . shut him down . as to what he can and cannot talk about, and I don't like doing it . but it's the cumulative effect of it all ..

Between his despair, . the emotional barometer around here, hangs on what his mom's emotions are. Between that, . and the chit with my dad .. and there popping up momentarily was DD unraveling .. I can't take anymore.

I felt .. honest to GOD . I felt as if I can't care anymore . so you wanna go hang yourself DD .. whatever . I can't keep caring. So .. your poor poor mom . and her poor plight .. screw her .. I don't give a chit . my dad . and his plight . he's made his bed . I don't give a chit anymore.

That's not me . I am not an uncaring person .. and no . I don't mean that in a sane mind . that DD should go hang herself. But that whole scene at my dad's . it snapped me . it pushed me over the edge.

So . I resolved .. I won't do it anymore .. I will be on guard, he will hear lies, if it means there is attendance at his trainwreck
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StacyB- thanks for your reply.

For the record - I love your “Mary Sunshine” outlook and positive nature. It balances out a cynical person like myself - and that balance is what keeps the world spinning round on an even keel!
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(cont'd)

She is absolutely astoundingly good ... I'll hand her that. She cleans up poo . and cleans up an old man's nether regions . and anything else asked of her, including staying o'nite if things aren't going well. She is so good.

BUT . .she is human . she gets sick . has problems .and then what? It's not reliable in the end. And I've said it ..

But .. I'm not being "heard".

Just as I said . I have to limit exposure to his wife . it makes me nuts to have to be around it .. and that too, I'm not being heard.

Honestly .. what was the worst of it all. The poo everywhere to be cleaned up .. or was it her dementia .. or was it the two of them bickering .. and squabbling .. what was the worst, . it's a 3 way tie . and .. saddens me, . and .. I don't know . it's just more than I can deal with, the whole thing. It really really is.

My dad . I get it, he doesn't feel good .. (he was never a patient and gentile soul, always had a temper . even when healthy) .. I get it his health is poor . and so putting up with someone who does like she does . is more than he can do. He blows his lid .. and I see why.

And to answer a question here . why didn't K attempt cleaning it up. She did. By the time I got there, . she'd already cleaned up 2 blow outs .. and now a 3rd sat . uncleaned. Apparent by the chitapalooza smeared and soiled towels laying about, she'd tried, . what was the 3rd time now . but gave out.

Whatever her issues are, she refuses to go to the doc. She gets winded .. badly .. pretty easily .. and that was the case above. She has a horrendous .. incessant . non stop cough . (no she's never been a smoker) ... and ... guess what .. ready for it.. refuses to go to the doctor. Blames it on nerves. Yes, that's right . "my nerves are just shot".

Me: "I've never heard of nerves causing a cough, you need to get that looked at".

K: "Oh it's just nerves . my nerves are just shot".

Me: "Well if that's the case, there is medication to calm nerves . .go ask your doc about it".

K: I'm not gonna do that . you take one pill it begs . now you have to take 4 more to counteract what each pill does, I'm not gonna do that".

Evident she had tried, what would've been the 3rd time there was a blow out . but she had to give in . she couldn't go another breath.

Dam&it .. I can't fix all that's wrong there .. there is no way in h377 ..

I'm not going to argue with her about what is .. her too breathless and her refusal to go look into it, .. a cough that is non stop .. and she won't go look into it. Her dementia . that she refuses to go have looked at .. I can't fix it.

But for whatever the reason(s) .. my dad is worse than she is .. he yells at her . thunders at her .. I get it why he snaps . but it's not fair . she can't help it.

It's a wholly unhealthy setting .. it is! And I can't fix it.

So . .I've already told everyone that lives in my radius .. if they see me answer a call from my dad after hours .. (after hours would be outside of what I agreed to do .. in .. going to chemo) .. if they see me answer a call from him and hear me say (a lie) .. "oh my dad, not good . the kiddos are here for the weekend, I can't help you". Or .. "oh man, not good timing dad, I've got a stomach bug . and been so terribly sick . better I not come around". Or any other lame azz something of a lie, I've told them .. shut up and go with it ..

Being forthright with him . as I was yesterday in my phone call with him: "Happy Birthday dad .. btw . you guys both need to be in a 24/ care setting with around the clock care .. you can't take care of yourself, and she can't take care of you, and happy bday btw".

He doesn't "hear" me. I'm not gonna argue with him . it's just not worth it to me . it just isn't. To raise my BP .. over something I can't change.

And to be forthright in the moment chit has hit the fan .. "nope dad . not me, . not this time".
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Dorker, it sounds like you want to be there for your dad, because you love him, and that you have a hard time telling him no. If you can and WANT to be there for him in emergencies, I don't see anything wrong with it, as long as you don't have any expectations about it. Dad is who he is, and most likely isn't going to change i.e. getting organized, appointing a POA, moving to a facility, etc. He's also not going to become less self-centered. I don't mean that disrespectfully, just that it is what it is. If you're hoping to get validation and concern about your needs from him now, I'm afraid you're going to be disappointed. Just be sure you are doing it without any iota of expectation, or if you find yourself getting upset and resentful, let him know you want to back out of helping altogether. It's also okay to tell him no; I feel like you're afraid of him being mad at you.

Could you help your dad line up a backup caregiver (that he would pay for) that he (and you) could have on speed dial in case of an emergency or explosion? (You know he's not gonna do it on his own) That would take a load off of you and off of your mind, and he could call that person instead of you having to rush over.
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Chaps my hide, also .. badly. I don't know, honestly, which is worse .. is it cleaning up chitapalooza .. not once but 2 x's .. or was it the throes of dealing with someone with dementia throughout the whole sordid scene. Both were absolutely .. what's the term to describe "horrible" . because it was worse than that!

Have no one to blame but myself though. I am the one that pole vaulted over a boundary I'd set for myself, without so much as a thought.

I promise you it had a lot to do with not thinking ahead . likely . because I was mired in the fact that DD had been .. at least I thought so .. earlier in the week, suicidal . and perhaps even (my imagination I guess) homicidal. That all, threw me for a massive loop. And .. I didn't recover quickly from all of it.

My dad having told me earlier in the week that c'giver was sick . .and not present. Should've sent the k-mart blue light special flashing bulb in my brain, and it didn't. Had I thought about it, . I'd of been on alert . for *uh oh . c'giver absent the scene . not my fault he fails to adequately address their situation . be on guard . and have an *excuse* ready".

Which is precisely what will occur if there is a next time. He obviously is needy . very very needy . at this juncture in his life . and unable to do for himself, . that is a given. He has a wife . that for the most part, . also is not only no help , she is a hinderance. And he fails to .. at least IMO adequately address it. I don't know why, I can't sort thru 50 years of their marriage and why he cowers .. or so it seems .. at any notion of displeasing her. I don't know. But I don't care to sort thru it.

And btw, . .K does drive (I disagree she should be doing so) . but only to familiar . nearby sites. She does not cook anymore, that whole process .. is more than she can manage. She does grocery shop . but even that is questionable as to whether she actually thoroughly comes home with that which is needed.

And on that note, . dad has told me . that she is not able to care for him .. things such as (and no he's far too weak to do it for himself) .. he will ask her to make him a 1/2 of a sandwich. She will generally argue .. "You just had b'fast". No, . he had b'fast 3 hours ago . but time is lost on her. He will spat back . "no .. I'm hungry .. I ate b'fast 3 hours ago". "No, . we just had b'fast . what is it 9:00?". "No K, it's 12:30 .. we ate b'fast 3 hours ago .. can I have a sandwich".

She'll go to the kitchen . and in there, get distracted with . *oh those papers in the dining room, let me go look thru those, I meant to look for that ___________" .. and 20 mins later, . .dad hollering out . "Hey did you forget my sandwich". At this point, my argument, "I'm trying to find that paper we needed for ___________ I'll do it in a minute". It never happens.

Folks, I have told him that I wish to limit any dealings that include his wife. I find it nearly impossible .. (I guess my own makeup) to be around the dementia . it maddens me to where I'd like to slap her silly. She keeps on and keeps on . and keeps on . until dad blows the h377 up .. I mean it .. cursing at her, raising his feeble voice .. and it's because she has a broken brain . and so I don't .. I don't lose it on her myself, but it taxes me to the inth of anything I am. I can easily understand how my dad, who is terribly sick and frail . looses it with her! I get it.

But .. where I have a problem with all this .. is this. They need a different set up.. so you don't wanna leave your home and you call it that you have a c'giver that comes Mon, Wed and Fri . and sometimes staying the night, on an as need basis.

They are not utilizing a "service" whereby . c'giver is sick .. or car troubles, or family troubles, can't show up . the service inserts a substitute. He uses an individual. I don't find that all that reliable and have said so.
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Rainmom, I apologize for coming off that way, maybe "criticizism" was the wrong word, I certainly never meant to step on anyone's toes, or to come across as a mean girl, I was just feeling that others were putting an awful amount of pressure on Dorker and telling (or implying) her what she should do do and how to react to her Father's emergent situation, whereas I feel it's up to her how to decide what to do and how to do it.

After the fact, recommendations for how she could have done things differently next time, would have been much more useful (IMO!). I Think It's just always difficult to always know exactly what to do in an emergency situation, you just react, that's my take on it.

You might think that I come across as Mary Sunshine, but I faced an enormous amount of pain and agony over childrearing and parental care and loss, just as the next person here has, and yes, perhaps my happy upbringing has a lot to do about my take on life, but I will not apologize for coming across as positive reinforcements in a lot of my posts, I can't change My outlook on life despite my personal journey. Again, I am sorry for how my post made you feel, especially as I think the world of you and everyone here who have made such a positive impact on my life through it's struggles. Thank you for your insight!
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Another reason to be thankful Dorker shares her saga with us! I would have absolutely no idea where to start if I had to clean an adults diarrhea explosion! I’m chuckling reading your responses but also appreciating the info too! I remember when our dogs came down with it mysteriously and one of them had a huge accident on the carpet. My gosh I had no idea where to start and could only stand there for a minutes surveying the damage! I might have cried a bit because I was so overwhelmed and had no idea how to clean such a horrible mess! I am little embaressed to admit that the first time my youngest threw up all of his bed in the middle of the night (we’ve been lucky. The oldest has thrown up once in 11 years), I had no idea what to do. Thank God my hubby wasn’t working that night because he marched in, took the bedding off and went out front & hosed it down and then told me to put it in the washer! I probably would have thrown it all out or thrown it ihnthe washer covered in vomit! Clearly I am not cut out for caregiving. I lack the common sense it requires. Those of you that do it, well you are amazing and deserve so much respect!
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Please, Stacey - please, oh please...please! Stop telling us what we should be saying!

Ive always liked you. You’re a sweet, kind, gentle soul. Always encouraging and always thinking positive.

Youve mentioned what a great childhood you’ve had and how loving and supportive your own family is and was. Although, a different experience with your dh’s.

A lot of us weren’t as lucky as you and so of course- when it comes to parents- our own perspectives will be different from yours. But they are still our own perspectives and just as valid as yours.

You previous post regarding “projecting” was a little harsh. And now you’re telling us - again - what we should and shouldn’t be saying... Part of why I love this thread is that other than the rare post from a non-Dokerite - everyone treats each other well and when disagreeing does so in a fair and intelligent manner - not just telling
folks what they should and shouldn’t be saying. That’s an entirely personal and individual opinion.

I AM sorry and I apologize to everyone else for bringing this up. I honestly didn’t want to do this. After the “projecting”’post I left. For three months. I don’t want to have to do that this time - so I’m saying what will otherwise fester in me.

I think the world of you, StacyB. Please don’t become one of the “Mean Girls” clique. Stop the scolding. Please!
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Lol, Midkid! I have to laugh at the “step back for a minute and think it through”.

Ive cleaned up more blowouts, blowups and blow-everywhere than I care to count. And, BTW the ticker is still running!

But the clean up always starts with that first minute of standing there - eyes surveying the damage, pieces falling into place mentally - assessing just what the plan of attack will be.

For me the very first step is always the same; Put on surgical gloves, grab a canister of Clorox wipes and a large trash bag. Then, I plan the route...

And, yeah - me too. Many an article of clothing has been tossed. I’ll look at it and think “Nope. It’s just not worth it!” There was one time - a brand new pair of Levi’s- which run upwards of $50 these days... I had dh out in the yard hitting them with the pressure washer! He gagged the entire time. Whimp!
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Your Dad needs to discuss this recent episode of constipation/pain with his Cancer Dr/team, and have a plan in place to pre-treat/preempt this from happening again if possible. He should have a fair idea of what to expect after having several chemo treatments already, of what's gonna happen following his cancer treatment and should implement that prior and without fail.

Constipation vs diarrhea post chemo must be a crapshoot in the best of circumstances. Ugg, I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy! Interestingly, I don't remember this being a huge issue when my FIL went through Chemo for Lymphoma. It is so difficult, I wonder if he is up to all this treatment.

On the other hand, when someone you love (with Cancer) cries "need you Now, severe pain and calling 911", you just run, without even thinking, it is the natural course of life if you are an empath and most of us here are. It's not in her to just say "NO, you are on your own " and roll over and go back to sleep, Dorker is just not made that way!

I hope there is a way to preempt this from happening again for your sake, but if there isn't, he needs to have a Caregiver in place, one there without fail, obviously his wife isn't capable of this position.

Dorker should be getting encouragement here, not criticism, as she needs to have a place where she can vent, even if she has stepped over her own boundaries, everybody does that, if not, she will stop sharing and bottle everything up, and she needs our support right now with so much going on in her life and things are likely going to get worse before they get better (ie: 2 parents headed towards death). I guess I just feel differently about it, and I understand the constant pressure from it all with similar experiences to hers when chitz was hitting the fan in my life.

It does get better, Eventually!
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That’s true Rainmom. I don’t have a lot of first hand experience with dementia but I just wondered if K is able to comprehend what had happened and that it need to be cleaned. I’ve read many posts here where someone with dementia is relieving themselves in places they shouldn’t or sitting in a mess and don’t even realize it. Wondered if in K’s mind, nothing was wrong with the chitapolooza situation But like you pointed out, if she can grocery shop, cook and drive then she’s not bad off.

I too wonder if occurred to dad to have K clean the mess.
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I doubt K has the wherewithal to know how to organize a proper cleanup of massive proportions. Driving a car requires a set of skills she hasn't totally lost yet. Cleaning up rivers of poo are a whole different thing. When my FIL would paint the town brown, as it were, I'd have to step back for a minute and think it through (all the while DH is sitting on the couch, gagging). Yes, I've changed a million diapers (and so did DH)….but an adult male in pants and thong undies---where to start?

Mostly it was a ton of towels, I finally got huge adult wipes and told dad to clean himself best he could and get in the shower. Then it was bleach, bleach, bleach and the hottest water. I threw away a LOT of clothes, just too much work for me.

Also using pet chemicals to clean carpeted regions. Carpet cleaner was tossed after FIL's death. I never felt like it was clean.

FIL's in home CG would NOT do bowel explosions. I didn't ever see that in their contract but they'd call me. Lovely.

The worst one was in a Mexican Restaurant...………..I just will never, ever forget that one.

Dorker--how many chemos has your dad finished? How many more to go? If he is routinely not going to chemo--then what is the point here? Mine is set up such that I have to have them no more than 23 days apart, 21 being the 'perfect' time table. If he is just sort of going now and then, he is not getting the benefit.

Might be time to see if the docs are just 'humoring' him. If this is what his EOL looks like, is it what he wants? Maybe it's time for Hospice, or palliative care. I'm sorry, but his life sounds just miserable. I can say that b/c I have chemo s/e and if I thought my chemo wasn't curing me, I wouldn't do another round.
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Worried - It doesn’t sound like K is that far gone. She is still driving, cooking, grocery shopping, etc. after all.

But more to my point - Did it even occur to Dad? K doing it rather than ringing up Dorker.
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With Dementia would it even occur to K to clean up the mess?
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And, AND - AND...

Just the fact that dad said “...way beyond anything you wanted to get stuck in the middle of" - tells me that he heard you, Dorker. Dad heard you state your boundaries. BUT he still called you anyway. TWICE in the space of a few hours AND to do the absolutely worse of the worst!!!

What does that tell you?

Sorry. But this entire event just chaps my hide.
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And, AND - why couldn’t K clean up the rivers of diarrhea? Or does that
not fall under her notion that it’s HER job to take care of HER man?

Yeah, I know. K has dementia. But has she forgotten how to use Clorox? Cause frankly, I’m my book - if she can drive a car, she can drive a sponge.
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Rainmom: "The idea of 'we’ll see' about addressing ALL of the need that should be addressed now - it’s quite frankly - absurd."

Good point!

If constipation is a side-effect of the chemo, what happens the next time he's stopped up and then there is chitapalooza? Watch the caregiver be sick on that day/those days, once she figures out the pattern. Who wants to clean up chitapalooza?

Until/unless Dorker starts standing up to her father, this is where I see her life headed:

Answering calls and running over every time her father says he "needs" her. Spending increasing amounts of time with her father, doing the caregiving, cooking meals her father can tolerate, etc. Cleaning up the chitapalooza (and whatever else) because there is no one else to do it. Spending nights in the ER with her father, which of course also involves policing K.

And then, when he dies, having a big mess because there was no will.

I hope I'm wrong.
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