I have been the caregiver for my father-in-law for over two years. He is end stage stage copd and currently receives Hospice care at home.
To say he is a controlling man is an understatement. He is, at best,a difficult man and very stubborn about his medications or listening to the doctors/nurses/social workers.
I know everyone expierences dying differently. That's all I keep hearing. That it is his decission about end of life care. He has the final say so, etc., In my brain, I know this. I am a very logical person, so it is diifficult for me to even try to understand an irrational behavior, but I try my best.
It seems as if I keep getting mixed messages from his care team and to be honest, I am fed up! Don't get me wrong, for the most part they are angels and great people. But, I ask you, if every person expieneces dying differently, wouldn't that also apply to caregivers? That our type of caring style would be different from each other?
I was very honest with my father-in-law in the begiining of my choice to be caregiver. I told him that I am not a very affectionate person, but that I am caring. I told him that I am tough ( being raised by a srict military father ), so that I would push him to do the things that I felt he could do for himself. I told him that I am not one to do a lot of small talk and I also told him, that there would be some things pertaining to his care that I could not do, such as bathing, changing diapers, etc., On the other hand, I cook very good meals, do his laundry, run errands, take care of all medications, clean the house and take care of his fianances. I might also add, that last April he was given four months and that was almost a year ago.
So how do I cope? I vent. I listen to music. I write. I work in my garden. I pray.
My father-in-law, comes home from respite care today. Two days ago, he was already giving me orders over the phone. The Hospice nurse told me he was disrespectful and bossy, not to mention argumentative. I told her that was something I expierence everyday with him. I was happy that she went through that, so maybe now, they will get it.........that I am doing the best that I can in a difficult situation.