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I've given up 4 months of my life to take care of my mom. I put my life on hold, took family leave, neglected my sons, neglected me, neglected my friends, and just neglected life trying to take care of my mom since October while my sister never even took any time off.

My mother gave me DPOA Financial and it's been that way since October. I've taken care of everything with little help from my sister. Every time I take a break (3-4 days away) my sister would get sick and have to go to the hospital, as some of you know.

I have all my moms paper work and there is none at my moms house. There are different people coming in and out, caregiver, and she asked me to take it. Now this last week she'd been asking me to bring the paper work back. I finally said OK, knowing my mom cannot even READ now, she will look at something and can't read one thing. Her eyesight has been effected and the doctor knows it. Anyway I'll continue....everytime I am away for a while my mom starts calling me asking me a bunch of questions. I answer them then she calls back with the same questions again and again and again. Beginning Dem/Alz I realize this by reading from these posts. I also realize she's just a shell of the mother that was and although that in itself is very very hard to deal with, I've dealt with it continuing to go over and do what was needed to be done.

Everything that my mom needed I ordered. Everything that needed to be paid I paid. Everyone that needed to be notified I notified. I even alphabatized all her paper work and put it in a nice file cabinet and in a safe deposit box.

Keep in mind that my sister, her husband, and their 2 teenage kids live in my moms house yet I've been the delegated one so everyone else just kicked back. Anyway everytime I am gone for a few days when I return I feel like a stranger in my moms house and I feel my sister is busy undermining everything I do. Well here goes the killer!

Low and behold my sister convinces my mom to remove me as DPOA and make her DPOA. Can you believe it. But although I am very dissapointed in my mom I know she is being manipulated and handled but I am going to look at it this way.

They need not bother calling me when she goes to the hospital. I won't fill in. My mom need not call me when she THINKS no one is there with her, I will not respond. I will not answer my phone.

I have made myself sick, literally sick from all of this. I actually now know that one can become sick yourself just from doing so much for that "special parent". I do not plan on being sick anymore.

I've been complaining about my sister not doing anything for a while on line here but now the ball is in her hand and I am passing the batton on to her. She can have at it and I will become the complacent one. I will become the one that has been talked about and been called the deadbeat. I will take all this in stride, although I am hurting at the thought that my mom has agreed to this. I am truly hurting.

I'll allow about 3 days to hurt and then I'm gonna pick myself up, get back in shape, and get back to work. I'll let my sister take care of all of this and I will feel no shame about it.

Now don't think I'm not rulling out praying because after I finish this bottle of wine, I'm gonna open up my Bible and ask God to remove this malice I have in my heart. Gonna ask him to give me peace, gonna ask him to show me how to forgive and forget. Oh I'm gonna fall down on my face and pray because no matter what no one says there is power in prayer.

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Oh by the way, my mom was denied for Medical so she will have to use her savings to pay for the care giver but let her and my sister worry about it now.
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I'm new here, but saw your post and I'm so sorry for what you are going through. Working through those emotions and allowing God his rightful authority to deal with your sister and mom is much easier when you don't have to continue to "walk" in a situation. But I'm praying that God will help you to do just that as I pray the same for myself in my situation.
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wow. 4 whole months? you're lucky. Run and don't look back. Sure it hurts now but when you're out of the situation for a few weeks it should feel a lot better. Please understand that you have dodged a MAJOR bullet. Your mom has spoken for your sister and there you have it.

You have much to be thankful for. You have a job to go back to and a sibling to take charge and let you GO! You may not like her methods but you are free, are you not?

I've lost everything, including the job of my life and my pension and portfolio. I'm in my 6th year and an only child with no siblings, good or bad, to help, take over whatever. Of course your mother is being manipulated. Thank God.

Let go and let God. He has already relieved you of this burden and he will remove the malice from your heart when you realize that He removed you as caretaker because He loves you so.

Hang in there Pamela6148 and drink a toast to those of us who rejoice in your freedom.

love,
Bobbie
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Thank you Bobbie. But I have to tell you, yesterday my mom called me and asked me if I was going to bring her some lunch. What did I do, I not only brought her lunch, but I went to the grocery store and brought her some groceries. I wanted her to know that I am not mad and that "WE" are OK. I'm betting that she isn't even remembering what has happened.

I have let go, and I'm letting God take the wheel!

Four months took a toll on me like you wouldn't believe, well I guess you would.

Thank you again Bobbie.
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I know the toll, Pamela. I have aged 20 years in 6. This is why I'm talking to you like this. Girl if I were you I would be doing the happy dance except I feel too old and sad to dance. I am totally used up. Run.
When mom calls for lunch, send her a pizza. Give yourself a few weeks to get over this first phase and you will see that your sister will handle it. She may not do everything the way you want, but consider it a delegation which means you have to accept the other person's methods.

Your mom will be fine, your sister will have an omg moment any minute now and you need to be NOT AVAILABLE.

It takes 21 days to create a new habit. Just focus on not doing and overdoing (lunch winds up with additional groceries) and just letting your sister handle it. Do you think you can get away with being unavailable for 3 weeks? You will heal and your outlook will be dramatically different.

I'm very excited for you! write back and tell me what you think.

lovbob
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Bobbie are you serious, go 3 weeks without going over there, or talking to my mom, or anything. Don't you think this will reinforce all the bad things that my sister had said about me to my mom. Don't you think my mom will think that I don't care? and that care giver (whom I hired), don't you think that will make me look awfully bad?

The last thing I want is for my mom to think I don't love her. But maybe she does need to realize what she's done to me huh. Stay away whoaaaaa that might be hard for me.

Oh also I had to go and take that In HOme Care Giver's bill to my mom for my sister to pay which is by the way for 2 weeks...are you ready for this $1,900.00.
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Pamela:
I understand your frustrations and have been dealing with my mother on a daily basis for over 2 1/2 years now. My brother does not help at all and only lives 20 minutes from my mother. (I live only one mile away from my mom.) When I ask him for help, he claims he can't help because he has a full time job and a family. Duh, so do I!!!! We had a very good relationship before my father died, but now I can't stand to be near him. He has charged things on my mother's charge card without her permission and has borrowed money for bills a few times. Yet, when we get to his house for one of his kid's birthdays, he shows us the new furniture he bought and renovations that he has done.

I wish he would "step up to the plate" and help me out. Do what is in your heart for your mom alone (ie: bringing her lunch) and let your sister deal with all the bullsh*t that comes with taking care of our elders.
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I am on my 10th year and I salute you to have the courage to walk away. Just remember that you mother most likely has no idea of what she is doing on the consequences (no more than a 3 year old child) so don't make her pay because of your disagreement with your sibling. I, too, am losing everything...my parter of 13 years has decided he no longer wants to continue our relationship because of my constant absence as I go back/forth to look for my folks and if I do move home, I will find myself looking for a job at almost 50. The guilt. The guilt of knowing no matter what I do, someone somewhere will be unhappy, including myself, because I wasn't able to make everyone happy and be in two places at once. Run, Pamela, as fast as you can and save yourself and whatever else you have to salvage. You may be luckier than some of us out here. I salute you.
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Right on memsobelle!!

Yes, I am serious! Your sister is going to say whatever and your mom is going to believe whatever. You actually have no control over it. Who gives a damn what the caregiver thinks. You didn't hire her to judge you and if she's any kind of experienced caregiver she KNOWS you have to get out of there for a bit. Sure, talk to your mom on the phone but if that's how your mom manipulates you and gets you to do stuff you don't want to do, just don't call until you know you are stong enough to say, I love you mom, but I can't today.

By staying away for a time you enable yourself to realize that all will actually be well even if you are not there everyday.

Listen to what the other caregivers have to say and of course you are going to do what you believe is best. I think that we all know that no matter what you do, someone is going to be upset. For once, that someone doesn't have to be you. Let it be someone else for awhile so you can heal. Your sister will be hollering for time off in a bit... let her holler for 4 months and then maybe you both can come up with a viable solution that doesn't cost both of you your sanity.

So what did your sis do when she saw the 1900.00 bill?? Your plight is awful but it is helping to take my mind off of the fact that my mom just crapped her brand new pants, doesn't recognize a banana and thinks that it isn't food, and is in general a total mess to deal with at 89. I love her very very much but I am dying.



bobbie
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You are only responsible for your actions and reactions! I have to tell myself that daily, minute by minute. You have to do what you have to do - parenting the parent, parenting your own children.. balancing it all. Hard to clean up the messes others leave behind! Also hard to say NO and not start the wiping - ha!
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Pamela,

I was where you are now, 7 years ago. I felt I was fighting my mom and brother. My brother had no clue what I was going through and mom, well it seemed she felt she deserved a slave. After 3 surgeries and an amputation, I left. Ha, I even went so far as to move overseas. When I left, everything fell apart. My brother finally gave up because he couldn't keep up. Sometimes you NEED to leave it all behind.

I've been back for well over a year now and my brother dang near bows to me when we need something. As long as he isn't the primary caregiver. Mom of course enjoys having her slave back, but complains when she wants to do unhealthy things that I know isn't right for her(I think she kicks me out maybe 3 times a week hahaha). But my brother sticks by my decisions as well as her doctors.

Stick to your guns. Your sister needs to see how much she needs you not to mention your mom! If all youre doing is banging your head against a wall. GET AWAY. If they feel they can do a better job, then by all means let them try. The resistance you receive is not healthy to YOU and YOU are #1.

Best Wishes
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I understand the frustration but don't take it out on your mother despite what you feel for your sister. I've been to hell and back with my sister, I'm still going through it with my sister. We've been dealing with this for 5 years with 2 sick parents and now her mother-in-law who has dementia. I have a 3 year old, my sister is a widow with an adult daughter. She's been through alot in her life.

We fight over how my parents are to be cared for, over the caregiver. But one thing we don't do is abandon each other and we support each other still even if we don't agree with things. We are a family of 6, but we are the ones who are the planners and executors. We have another sister who is also involved but not on a planning level because she has emotional issues. Whatever you are going through with your sister---she's not the one you should be concerned with. It should be your mother. And despite what you THINK your mom is doing. If she does have Alz/Dementia...then you cannot realistically expect her to be logical or to see things from your viewpoint. You really need to go to a caregiver support group if you are not getting it from your family. AND you should voice your opinion to your sister and decide on the responsibilities together. If she's unwilling to work with you, then you do what you feel you need to do to contribute and leave it that. If it's just doing errands for your mom, or just taking her to doctor's appointments. EVERYONE should be involved.

At least take a week off to reflect and then come in with a fresh outlook.
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Remember also that no one really understands what a caregiver goes through until they've done it themselves-I am surrounded by family who thinks all I do is sit on my butt all day and "babysit." So your mother and your sister are going to be mad at you because they have never looked at it from your point of view before; but your sister is about to get a firsthand view, and you need to step back and let her have it. And if your Mom calls you again asking you to do something, tell her very kindly that your sister will take care of it then change the subject. Keep praying for guideance every night and God will tell you what to do.

bobbie - don't worry, my grandmother, who is also 89, messes up her pants all the time. The smell is what annoys me the most-it goes through the whole house! Can you change her to diapers? might make cleanup easier :)
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I don't understand why it has to be either/or when becoming the POA. My mother-in-law has me, and one of her sons as POA, and all three sons are on all her bank accounts, but I'm not. I pay the bills, but when she dies they take over, which is how it should be. Why can't both you and your sister be POA? Your sister needs to know that if she is laid up and unavailable to sign checks, no one else can do it legally at your mothers bank. Not very good planning on her little deceitful, conniving, scheming self I'm thinking.
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arrg. yes'm. I know that it's time for the Depends. Mom has worn them before but takes them off every chance she gets and doesn't have an accident for awhile and we all get into a false sense of security! she just got me today.

it is a rather ripe situation! My husband made a gagging noise I have never heard before. it really made me laugh and I'm laughing again just thinking about it.

I asked him a few hours later: so what was that noise you made and he got urpy all over again. He's a good guy. without him I would have put mom on an iceberg and caught the next berg for myself.

His dad is beginning to show symptoms of dementia and we are wondering if we can move to Costa Rica. Probably a bad choice. No icebergs.

Thanks you guys for cheering me up while we are trying to cheer up Pamela!

irony alert: I posted on the 'constipated mom' thread today before mom had her blowout. I was all proud of the carrot juice, etc. well, let me tell you...

lovbob
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Well Naheaton if you've followed my posts remember that my sister goes into the hospital atleast once a month then so be it.

Yeah that would be the right thing to do, both of us have POA but my sister has totally convinced my mom otherwise and really and truly I was so overwrought I'm glad. Now let her hair turn gray, let her hair and nails go raggedy, let her life be turned upside down because it surely will. I'm tore up from the floor up and have had it. I'm just tired out, ya know. I don't want anything more to do with it.

Let all of them wallow over there in the mess that they've created. As for me and my sonz we cleaned our own house and I do mean clean. It's been a mess for 4 months.

POA to me means Poop On All of you.

I still have all my moms paper work that I placed in a safe deposit box. The Trust, the Deed, the Insurance papers, adoption papers for my sister, although I'm sure they'll be asking for all of that back soon enough. Now here's a question for you all....Should I make copies and give it all back? I've been thinking about that.
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Why is your sister going into the hospital every month? I don't think they have a way of removing the cussedness gene, (yet) so why then?
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touche!!
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I have 5 brothers and sisters and they do not help. I am sorry to say I can hardly stand my older sister anymore as she gets very ill anytime that someone needs help. She is a hyprocondriac and only talks about herself.

You do have a lot of malice in your heart as I also do for my family, and praying doesn't seem to be working maybe you could take advantage of a EPA programs if your employer has one. I am considering talking to someone.

I just feel like my dad and mom have taken control of my life and it will be this way for the next 10 years or so. They are in their late 70s. My husband helps me a lot but now his mother is going over the edge and his two sisters are whiny people. I do not know how much more we can take. Life doesn't even seem worth living if this is what we have to do until we turn 70.

We have no children or I would pay them to help me with my mom and dad.

Maybe your mom and sister did what they did because they have read your posts in the past and felt they needed to give you a break.
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You are very lucky you had to deal for only 4 months. I had to quit my job almost 2 years ago, and live in Mom's 4 family home. I have 6 siblings, but get little physical help from them. Half of them back me up in everything I do, the other half sometimes question what I do and why I do it. But I ignore them because they either do not help at all, or show up very rarely to even visit. They are all younger than me, and HAVE A LIFE! At least that is what I am told. I guess I'm not entitled to eat meals with my husband, or have time off to go out to eat occasionally.

When we make the decision to sign on for the duty, we never expect it to take over our lives, but it does. Unfortunately, no one else sees how bad things really are for us. We do what we have to and don't complain, so everyone else thinks we are good with the way things are.Once and a while, a sibling will ask how things are going, but they don't really hear what you are saying.
My experience has been that if you need help or relief, you will have to get it for yourself. The only people who get what we are going through, are the ones who are doing the same thing for their loved ones.
Pamela,Thank your lucky stars that you have your life back so soon.Don't waste a minute of it. Good luck!!
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amen amen amen
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To SoAlone I say, "get thee to Hawaii" and leave them all behind! With no kids to keep you here, sail off into the sunset with your husband... Get the old folks set up in an asst living or whatever, and set yourself free while you can. Like you said you're looking at another 10+ years of this.... I can hear the surf calling, can't you?
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amen amen amen....I know I hear it calling me!!!!
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Hi Pam~
I just read your story-and gee can I relate to it. I too was the primary care person for my mom as well-next to the facility she eventually had to be place in. Although there was family around...things somehow, someway fell onto me to do. I was quite resentful over the situation-HOWEVER-it did not change anything.

A suggestion for you Pam is to seek some outside help on the best way for you to handle your situation-and just do your best. If anyone has a comment to make-tell them-politely-try waking in my shoes.....We all have different degrees at which we loose our cool. If your sister wants to take over-why not let her-and let her see all that is involved. If you Mom does have a dementia-I am not sure if things can be legally changed (DPOA)-this is something you may want to check out.

What I have learned on my caregiving journey-to be a good caregiver-you must first have to meet your own needs. Strange as it may sound-there is a lot of truth to this. If you are able to take some 'me time', you will recharge or rejuvinate-and thus become more effective in your caregiving.

Can you seek some advice or support for your agency on aging, and listen to what they have to say, as well as the folks here in this forum?

Good luck!

Hap
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PAMELA:

Everybody, at one point or another, will need a source of strength other than their own. If prayer helps you heal and move on with your life, it's all good. But if you're using prayer as a refuge, the only thing you're doing is hiding from problems which one way or another you're going to have to face.

You think with your heart, and your family knows exactly where to hurt you. And little by little, your pain trickles down to your own family; but they suffer in silence. This has to stop.

If you can, remove yourself from the situation now that your sister has manipulated your mom into giving her DPOA. Let her live in your shoes for a while, and see how much she likes it. Perhaps she'll develop a greater sense of appreciation and understanding for what you've been through while everyone else lived high on the hog. This kind of toxicity is no longer an option for you dear, so step aside and let someone else carry the torch for a while. ... But every once in a while remind your mother you love her very much and respect the decisions she has made about her care arrangements.

Stay in touch.

-- ED
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Ed you truly spoken to my soul and I thank you so very much.
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As far as all the paperwork goes-make copies to give to them but KEEP THE ORIGINALS. Count on the copies getting lost, getting messed up, etc. The documents are in a safe place with you, and your family is going to need them sooner than expected.

I've read all the posts, and basically we are all saying the same thing-let your sister take over. Even though she did it to be manipulative and nasty, she will soon find out that she has only hurt herself. Besides, your mental and physical health was starting to suffer terribly, so this is probably the perfect time for this to happen. Take care of yourself, recharge, reconnect with the rest of your family and friends, and get some rest. Eventually your sister will come back to you for help and advice, and hopefully by then you will be ready to handle it. Good luck.
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Thank you too Rephill for your honesty.
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Pamela, oh Pamela, I feel your pain....I too have been dealing with a similar situation. I quit my job knowing that my dad and his wife were going to need some attention. She was in the early stages of Alzheimers. Lo and behold, I early retire, go on vacation and before we return find out that both of them have ended up in a nursing home. That was May of '08 and I am still dealing with all this. Oh and I am an only child, my step mom has no children so it's all on me. I too have a nice box, actually 3 now. I hate to even say this but it's so nice to see others with the same situation. I just discovered this website yesterday. I have learned a LOT in the almost two years so the one thing that confuses me is how is your mom able to make a decision about her DPOA when she is not able to make decisions on her own? I know how awful it is in the early part of dealing with this situation and believe me, you will get over the hump but yes it takes it's toll. I too, prayed and told God that I know he doesn't give us more than we can handle but he was really pressing his luck or had mistaken me for someone else. I also was getting sick, body aches, chest pain and had physical therapy to take the kinks out of my neck and shoulders from all the stress I held in there. I hope your sister and her family will soon appreciate how hard it is to do all that you have done. It takes forever to get paperwork processed and payees to talk to you about personal information, some are great after you have sent in the required documents and others it seems is an uphill battle. I wish you the best and when you pray, let it go completely. It's all we have. Our families can be there for us but they have not worn our shoes.
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Well care-giver family I took your advise and have stayed away from my mom. It's Saturday morning, and she has just called 3 times. She asked me if I could come over on Monday and take care of her. Says they are trying to get the funds 2gether for the primary care-giver to be there 5 days, (guess my sister is seeing it's not that easy, just as all of you said). But I see my sister still wants to have her there on the weekends, why else would she want me to come over on a Monday.

So my mom wants to know if I can come over and take care of her Monday. I told her that I'm working and I would have to look at my schedule. Sounds kind of cruel as I write it. But she went on to tell me that she would pay me to come over. It kind of sounds like a trick and I am a little reluctant because of the way my sister did things and I don't know if my sister is putting my mom up to asking this.

Anyway I am leaning towards not going, and just letting them hammer out all the manueverings that I just got out of. Besides that since I've gone back to work I really don't want to fall back into that depression state of mind.

Mom also said that she went to the eye doctor who told her she has 20/20 vision. I really don't know how that could be though, however if it is I'm glad for her.

Bottom line, it's not been long enough and I don't think I'm going.
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