I have been the informal caregiver for my mother for 7 years now. I am blessed she is such a dream. However, it that does not mean I have been without stress. After years of the stress of working 30 hours a week, caregiving to mother and helping with my grandchildren I became ill. I also lost my father and lover during that time. Career gone. Social life gone. Physical health gone. I am wondering while my 3 siblings have gone on with their lives and careers, How much some one would be willing to pay for my services? The services include handling all financial issues, paying bills, handling the trust, doctors appointments, arranging and transportation, church and family functions. Emergency services also including hours at the hospital, often spending nights, washing clothes, obtaining clothing. Really anything the assisted living does not provide: like managing insurance issues. How much are my services worth? I tired of feeling like a victim of circumstances, no breaks, no vacations, etc. no career and not able to travel or save for my future. I am now 59.

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Many thanks. Mother is still lucid and we have talked but I don't want her caught in the middle of all this. I am the head of the trust. My brother says do what you have to do and if the other 2 have a problem, he will talk to them. the other 2 say nothing when I tell them my circumstances, they are fully aware of all I do, because I send updates. I was thinking take a 1,000.00 to cover my unmet bills, and another 1,000.00 a month for my future. What do you think? They are listed on the trust, but I manage it. Thank you so much for helping me. I have felt like a victim, but no longer. It is time to take charge and love myself. They are so use to me "handling everything". Even now when I ask for help deciding if mother should have an operation, they just leave it to me.

You deserve to be paid for your caregiving or possibly your mother could leave you most of the inheritance. Frankly, if your sisters do virtually nothing to help out, I don't think they deserve two cents of the inheritance. There are many hours in a day and your siblings could find time to help out, at least for several hours a week. It is baloney that siblings "do not have the time" etc. for caregiving. If a sibling was single and Tom Cruise was coming to town and wanted a date with her, she "would have the time". People do what they want to do. Do not let your sisters get away with this crap of not helping out!

At least $25.00/hour.

Here is what I did with my siblings:

Research online what caregivers get paid.

Create a spreadsheet or the like and itemize all you do for your Mom - providing round the clock care. Multiply out by hourly rate and then tell them you have done all of this for free for 7 years. Now, with great financial loss, you need to either be compensated to care for your Mom (also include in the spreadsheet the cost of local assisted living costs - base + additional fees).

Set strong boundaries. Your siblings will be angry at first that you are requesting help because you are asking them to step up. Another option to present is that you need them to care for your Mom equally - like 3 months there, 3 months here, so forth.

My siblings blew a gasket - especially my older sister who is a stay at home mom to boys in school - and lives minutes away from Mom. She was really, really ugly - as was her husband.

Do what is right for YOU and your Mom. You are not asking your siblings, you are giving options and telling them to make a decision. Do a free conference call (freeconferencecall).

Blessings to you. Be strong.

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