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Big difference. Yes kids are a huge handful, can be a nightmare and put you in the poor house, but normal families (I've heard there are actually some out there) raising kids is fairly routine. Kids get smarter, learn good judgement, take care of themselves go away and support themselves. Elders who are failing physically and mentally are going the opposite direction. I'd take the terrible twos any day over dementia and dying. Should we be expected to return our parents child raising work with total devotion to their elder care? No nursing home? Gotta live with them or they with you?

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If you're pretty busy, you can explain if you have a job for starters and kids to care for. You can also explain that not everyone is cut out for caregiving
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Graygirl, it would be totally unprofessional for the caregivers at the facility to say that about you. I suspect your mother said it to them and they listened without saying a word. You aren't doing anything wrong. Your mother is receiving the care she needs. I have a feeling that it would be a mistake to move her into your home. Her personality sounds like a difficult one that would make your home an unhappy one. IMO, it is better to arrange for her care in an AL facility. Guilt can push us into doing things that is bad for everyone involved. Your mother and you will be able to live more independently if she is in AL.
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Hang on in there, Graygirl. So your mother's been in the facility for less than a week, yes? And it's only two months since her stroke - essentially, you and your mother are both in the very early stages of a huge adjustment and there is bound to be emotional turmoil. None of this is your fault!

You've done really well for a start to organise the respite stay, it's the ideal half-way house for her while you get your head round everything that's been going on, what's changed, and what's best for next steps.

If you'd been independent and then had a stroke that landed you in a care facility, you'd be angry and depressed and lost too - your mother's venting, basically, and I'd take her interpretation of what the caregivers are saying about you with a very large pinch of salt. But even if you could magically move her to your home she'd still have had a stroke, she'd still be feeling terrible, she'd still be angry and depressed, and she'd still have lost her independence. Upending your life is not going to improve hers, is the point. So don't do that :)

Of course you want your mother to be comfortable and happy, but the saddest thing of all is that no matter how much you want that it doesn't mean you can make it happen. But you are Not Guilty - you didn't do any of this, and you can't cure it.

For now, just give it time. It can take months for the immediate effects of a stroke to ease off and you may find your mother very, very gradually improves over the next few weeks anyway or, if not, that her doctors can consider medications to balance her mood. If I were you I'd be talking to the facility now about repeat extensions to her respite stay so that you don't have to make final decisions under pressure. Is she all right financially? Do you need to organise Medicaid or anything? Is all the paperwork under control?
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Graygirl - you don't need to feel guilty. You're not doing anything to her - the stroke is what damaged her, not you. Your mother's expectations are unrealistic. She didn't live with you before the stroke (I'm guessing since you said your house isn't big enough) and there's no reason for her to expect that you would move to accommodate her needs now.

I'm curious though - what is the plan for her after the 30 day respite? Stay in assisted living? Go back to her own home, with an aide?
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My Mom had a stroke 2 months ago and has been in rehab the last 55 days. She is doing a 30 day respite visit in an assisted living facility but is fighting it choosing not to engage in the activities because she thinks every one there is old and she's not even though she is 83. She is not dealing with losing her independence well at all. She is so angry and puts a guilt trip on me every chance she gets by saying her sitter or nurse says they can't believe I would do this to her I work 3 part time jobs and still have a teenager at home plus a husband. My house is not big enough for her to move in or handicap accessible I am eaten up with guilt because I don't want to sale my home which is paid for to buy one big enough for her plus she would have to have a sitter 24/7. She's been diagnosed with dementia along with effects of stroke. I feel like my life is over can't release the guilt.
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Crouded, I looked after my son's girlfriend's 5 y.o. daughter today, from 7am til 6pm, im 55 y.o., and while the little girl is a total sweetie, I'm exhausted! I really don't know how you are going to keep up as both oldie and we one continue to grow old at a rapid rate! I'm thinking of you, as it going to get tough! My FIL, had a pressure sore on his backside, ya, great fun, my husband would have nothing to do with it, and being a retired Medical Assistant, I was the one "assigned" to do the twice daily bandage dressings as wel as the twice weekly trips o the wound care specialist, great fun! It only gets harder as time goes on. FIL, is a stubborn cuss, who always waits too late when things get bad to address things, like Rx refills requiring Dr approval, and medical issues that could have been nipped in the bud. I'm tired tonight,! Hang in there!
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Stacey, thanks. I will tell you all what his father and my husband told me once. They told me his dad use to bathe his mother in law when she needed help. I told my husband, I sure hope you two are trying not to guilt me into it because I am not there yet and not going to bathe your dad, sorry honey. I will bathe my husband, not his dad. I am sure my husband grandmother was embarrassed to no end if that was really the case.

Stacey, also if it ends up that I truly have health issues myself. I believe it is time for heart to heart with my husband about his dad staying here. I do feel like we are missing out, and have had private tears for just that because we couldn't do something. We are hoping he is up for our little girls birthday party soon. We decided to have it hosted at a place rather than home to take the stress off of me this time, but we know she will love it.

True me, you have said alot I have thought, I just keep a brave front.
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Stacey, thanks for a little bit of needed extra confidence that I am doing the right thing in insisting my father move to AL. I also wish I had found this site sooner, before I agreed for him to move in with me and my SO. I didn't expect it to be easy, but I never imagined the scope of the problems. And this while he still needs emotional support more than hands-on care. I am amazed by what some of the people here are able to do, just as I am amazed by how gently and effectively the AL staff treat their residents.
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No problem Windy, we all good 😊...hope I answered the questions okay too.
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Crouded, kudos to you for sticking by your husband, but in my experience, the "short term" can and probably will grow lengthy in caring for your FIL, as we have been doing for 11 years now. Yes the guilt, and carrot dangling goes on and on, and almost always pits you against your hubby, and with a small child afoot, must be grueling! I truly with all my heart, recommend that you don't let it carry on too long in Your home, as the years soon accumulate and your earning power and retirement planning will set you back so fast, as well as job potentials diminish the older you get, rendering you redundant in this fast paced world. There are really great senior facilities out there letting him be close to you, yet letting you get on with your own lives, as we only get one go around. I truly wish I had done this with my FIL, now wasting away in my own home. Things could have been so much different, if only! I also wish I had found this site back then as well, so much great information! Really, get on with your own lives! Its not fair to be guilt ed into giving up your lives to our parents, we didn't ask to be born, it was their choice to have us, and we must take a stand for what we want in our lives! At this point, I/we would love to downsize into a small condo, but can't because of a very ill thought out Promise, we Never should have made, and now really can't get out of. I never thought he would live this long. Food for thought!
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Stacey, that is one amazing guilt soap opera. Hang in there kid.....
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Crowded, that last post of mine came out all wrong. I didn't mean to admonish you for straying from the subject. Hell, let's take this disscussion anywhere anyone wants to go. I was just curious about your situation. Sorry that came out wrong.
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Windy, I am definitely one of the lucky ones when it came to a happy and healthy family dynamic. My parents came here from Wales, UK in 1950, they had been separated for a year, as my Mom , the youngest came over at 19, and had been dating my Father since she was 16. Her family was all being sponsored over by her American GI BIL, and my Dad came over to marry her upon turning 20, the legal age at that time, to leave the country w/o parental permission, which his mother wouldn't give. So, they had a fantastic love affair and they married when he got here. They went on to have six children, and we were raised quite British having only family to rely on. I was very lucky to have an idyllic childhood with many cousins and Auntie and uncles. My husband's family, was quite different. My husband's father married his wife who had a previous child out of wedlock, however they never told her and she found out when she was about 17 and raise hell about it. Their family life was very strict and filled with secrets and lies. The children were pitted against one another and the favoritism so many problems. My husband's sister went on to have a lot of drugs and alcohol problems and then does to this day, and his brother went on to have at least 11 different marriages that I can count. And the saga continues to this day, trying to unwind all the secrets and lies of the past. His father while suffering from age appropriate dysfunctions at 85, still has a good mind but he fails to be able to recall conveniently, things from the past because it is all so convoluted. As I previously stated, we lost three of our parents both mine and Jones mom about 11 years ago and immediately John's father moved in with us. My husband's brother and sister has not ever being to my home since John mother's wake 11 years ago. His sister calls drunk now and again but there are always issues such as she's dying and/or traumas, and/or she was moving from one state to another and she's frankly crazy. John's brother has been m.i.a in the past 11 years has married or different women and currently live in another podunk town in Arizona. However, in the last 3 months they both have been calling quite often and in my opinion sort of circling like vultures as it becomes apparent John's father is failing Healthwise and they are kind of winding up to see what's left of his money in round about ways by the comments and inquiries, offers to NOW, 11 years later, to help "next year" when BIL's wife of 6 years, whom I've never met or spoken to retires. The old man may not even be here next year, ya I'm bitter. Never before, from either of them has ther been offers to help, give us a break, or even a inquire as to how we are coping with 11 year of solely caring for their father, through, dealing with their Mother's dying, and arranging her funeral and wake at our home, Johns sister had the gall to come up the day after her own Mother died, which she wasnt even here for, nor here through her 1 week hospitalization, and she is a geriatric nurse, rensacked through her things, liturily dumping her dead mothers belongings onto the livingroom floor taking only what she wanted, and left the rest there as she thought thar would help her then 74 year old Father, go through her belongings to sort through. Meanwhile, my husband, FIL and I were left to sort out MIL'S funeral arrangements, wake, her legal affairs, her belongings, clothing, downsizing his belongings and moving their Dad into our home, Dad's grief, then his Cancer dx, Lymphoma, where wew they then? Not helping us. Thank God for my sinlings, who themselves were only just dealing with grieving of our own parents. They all stepped up to help us with everything, and John's sister and brother gave absolutely zero help nor input into the services and wake arrangements. It was astonishing, but at the time, I was on autopilot, just getting through each day. Back to GUILT, my FIL, I'm sure feels scared and abandoned by his other 2 kids, but continues to guilt my husband or a better word is bait, my husband at every turn to keep him here til death, safe from his other kids, and out of any nursing facility, so that in the end, there may be a little payoff for him, but in all honesty, we feel robbed of probably the best 11 years of our lives, having raised our 4 kids to successful adulthood, and being able to enjoy our lives with them and our grandkids. There is NO AMOUNT OF MONEY worth That! Guilt? We have piles of it over here, and see no way out, as that mistakenly was Our Promise. We had No clue!
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Oh sorry Windyridge, did I stray. I do that sometimes. Yes, I hear the guilt trips a lot between my father-in-law and my husband. I do my best to stay out of it (per my mom's advice, probably the best advice a mom could give). My husband's father can 'lay' it on, saying "I changed your diapers" when my husband is there cleaning him up, or "well, maybe you should just put me in a nursing home" in a way that both end up in tears. I think my husband feels he owes his dad this, and truthfully I feel I owe my mom when the time comes. My mom did it for her mother (but she had siblings to help). My husband is an only child. I have siblings to help as well. My daughter is an only child, and I sure hope I don't have to put her through this and financially able to care for myself or strong enough to say, sweetheart best place for me is in a nursing facility. They really have come along way. Some in our area are not great though.

As for my health, I hope they figure it out soon. I was involved in a car accident in Jan. 2014 which landed me with a constant pressure headache and migraines that have spiraled into episodes of either seizures or fainting with stroke like symptoms recently. Absolutely crazy! My neurologist has me seeing all sorts of specialists, thus the heart monitor strapped to me for two weeks.

I personally don't know how long this family dynamic can make it, but doing it as long as I can for my husband.
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Crowded, what a plate full you have. You're in your 40s with a 3 year old and FIL being cared for in your home and going to work with a heart monitor strapped to your chest? How on earth can you keep this up? This thread is about guilt from our parents. Any of that going here?
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Methink depending on the age of our parent(s) is how they stereotype nursing homes. I think our parents picture nursing homes as asylums of the early 1900's, dark, dank places with unsmiling faces. Thus, the reason we can't even get them into the car to even take a visit and have a free lunch... they are hanging onto their front door jams with their hands for dear life.

With the nursing homes that I have viewed on my own, out of curiosity, I can't wait to be in one to let someone else do all the cooking and cleaning, and let me enjoy BINGO and whatever else is offered..... I could be in the computer all day and not worry about cleaning the toilet :)

But our parents guilt us into promising that we will never put them into a nursing home.... of course, back then when the promises were made Mom and Dad were still driving, going on vacations, sight seeing, doing their own yard work, etc. We, as the grown children, never pictured them using canes/walkers and not being able to hear/see.
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vstefans, you made me think of something. I have worked for people in the past who paid for private care to care for their parents. Possibly because they could afford to do so and their parents didn't mind. Both situations parents had Alzheimer's and they liked keeping the same people. I know in a lot of our cases we wonder if we could afford to do so. I think my Father-in-law feels it would take every penny he has, but we are thinking he may have to start hiring in some help at least part time if he doesn't improve. I recently went back to work part time (currently have heart monitor strapped to my chest at 44 years old, ugh), and my husband knows he may have to go back to work himself soon as our money is running short. He is full time caregiver for his dad, and he needs 24/7 care nearly! We also have preschooler running around about to turn 3. I worry about our financial future, luckily we haven't touched our retirement, but haven't been able to contribute in the last few years. My husband feels obligated to care for his dad and against putting him in a home. I sometimes regret okaying the move in last year, but I did. It sounded temporary, and he didn't seem in as bad of health, but declined so rapidly it seems. He has all his mind though, just no strength it seems.
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I second what Windy said above about getting updated Wills, Trusts, POA's, etc while one's parent(s) is still in clear mind.

My parents had a Will drawn up 12 years ago, I dug out the copy they gave me and almost had a heart attack.... my parents were giving some stock to various siblings and sibling-in-laws, ok no problem even though the vast majority named had already passed away... then came the word "or their heirs".... does that mean immediate heirs? family tree heirs? it wasn't clear. I had visions of spending months and months trying to locate my Dad's sister-in-law's heirs from her side of the family. Good grief why give away stock to people you never met. Once Dad realized that could happen, it lit a fire under him to look for a new attorney.

Thank goodness I got my parents into an Elder Law Attorney with the new Living Will none of those names are on it, whew. From the estate I could just write a nice check to those who are still with us :) I tried very hard to get my parents to do a Trust, but Dad was taking way too long to fill out the paperwork, so we just gave up on that. Six months later he's still working on the paperwork.... [sigh].

Yet part of me thinks my parent's are throwing guilt at me with their inheritance. Something they should use for themselves to make THEIR life easier [and mine in the process].
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I had given some passing thoughts to my, and my parents affairs as severe all getting older. Having a wife who's a lawyer also was helpful. We've had wills and end of life documents for quite some time.

My sister died suddenly of a drug overdose about 5 years ago, leaving a husband and 2 small boys. My folks were about 80 then and this was awake up Call to them to get their affairs in order. I was able to get them to update their wills, brat livings wills and grant me a very broad POA.

At the time,I'm thought my dad was being a little stupid and stubborn. We had a huge screaming match over the filthy carpet in their house that he refused to get cleaned. I just could not believe how he could be so thick. I now realise he had the beginnings of dementia which has progressed over the past 5 years.

So, in my case it took a tradgety to get things in place but if I had not done it then it would be totally impossible at this point. I'm now taking care off all the bills, monitoring doc apps, checking on investments, and a number of other things.

If parents are younger and still competent, don't let them put this off. Explain what nightmare it will be for you to deal with their affairs and care. Demand that it gets done!
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Windy, my parents bought the full estate planning package over 20 years ago. I did my own plan about a decade ago, after becoming friends with an attorney who specializes in trusts for care of companion animals. Need to give her a buzz about making updates, thanks for the reminder.
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Stacey, what interesting comparison between your family and your husbands. This discussion started as how can sibs be so different. Now you've raised the question of how can some families be emotionally healthy and others so dysfunctional. Not to mention, how did people end up well adjusted with abusive jerks for parents. I don't know how you have put up with the FIL for 11 years. Good lord.....
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Wow! Where did all these 40 something's come from? I know I sound like a broken record ( those round things that would spin and emit music) but all you young folks get those wills, POA s , etc done now! I just got in under the wire with my folks. Now it would be impossible.
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Se above comment.... Now on to my husbands parent situation. He is one of 3 kids, and came from a incredibly dysfunctional family full of secrets lies and favoritism. His Father ruled with a leather belt, and understandably the siblings aren't close to each other and the othe two kids split as soon as possible. My husband, the baby, (now 59 ) is the only one who remained a constant, and we as a couple, remained close despite the dysfunction, I slowly learned of over 36 years of marriage. I as his wife, who hailed from a healthy family dynamic, made sur they always were included in all aspects of their grandkids lives, unlike the others, we included them in holidays and vacations, and did, despite old hard feelings on my husband's part, enjoy a good adult relationship. Unfortunately as mymy husbands Mothers health declined w/COPD, my FIL would often broach the subject of "if something happens to Mother, can I come to live with you guy's" and wabd after seeing how things worked wirh my own parents, , I can see why. Well my husband's Mom did pass, we in fact lost three parents in 14 mo., and FIL moved in with us 11 years ago this mo. The mental mind games this man plays is unbelievable! It drives my husband crazy, and I am always stuck in the middle. The gilt trips, the dangling carrots, the multiple Will changes al add up to big time regret on our part. Every situation is different ad there is no right way I think it all comes back to the environment in which you were raised, as he alienated his other 2 kids, yet revels in hearing tidbits of their screwed up lives. Yet he claimes no responsibility as to why they are messed up. Gilt? If he left tomorrow one way or another, I would have No Guilt, as we have given up to him the best 11 years of our lives.
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I'm one of six kids now 53-65 of age. We happily took care of our own parents working together till the end of their lives, never having to put them into skilled nursing care, however we are are all so close, and each fulfilled a specific role in their care, so that one didn't have more burdens than the next, or at least as fair as it could possibly be done. We all also really enjoyed them before the big decline in each of their health began, taking turns vacationing, as well as downsizing them from family home, to apt, to sisters M-IN-LAW attached apt. They were such incredible parents. They saw us into the world, and all together we saw each one out of this world, and for that I am so proud of each and every one of us!
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Another 40-something here. At what's supposed to be my "peak earning" years, having finally gotten myself well established, only to see much of it blown away in the last year because of parent crises. Not sorry I took the time last summer to intervene for my mom, but finding it nearly impossible to rebuild now while dealing with Dad's issues.
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Windy, Dad is still fighting the idea of AL. Even as he admits he's miserable here, and occasionally acknowledges that he's made my life more difficult.

FF, he actually pulled that line on me!! That brother and I will need professional care when we're old because neither of us has kids, so "we" should be conserving his estate now by not spending money on AL for him. Of course "we" means me doing all the work, brother is not expected to contribute only benefit.
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There should be a rule that if you are a senior yourself, you cannot take care of senior parents !! Honestly, I am too old for this. I find myself napping during the day, some days doze off while reading Aging Care as my home office chair is so comfortable :P

My parents still try to guilt me into helping them with their yard work... until I tell them that *I* have been hiring a landscaper to take care of my own yard.... and no, that doesn't mean I now have more time to help them with their yard... it means I can't physically do that type of work like I use to. How I wish I could spend all day out pulling weeds, mulching, planting flowers, like I use to. That wheelbarrow has left the building.
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Like sandwich, I'm in my 40's (48 actually), with my mother now almost 85. It's not nearly that usual now for parents to start their families in their mid-late 30's, and even 40's. But (sounding geezer-ish now) back in the 60's-70's, my parents were mistaken for my grandparents quite a bit.
In some ways, I feel like the age I am now is pretty ideal for dealing w/my mother's issues. I'm not a kid, a newly married spouse, or young parent -- and (knock wood!) I'm still pretty "young feeling."
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That is so true, sandwich. Many women are having kids in their 30-40s now. Elderly parents are going to be a middle-age concern for people in the near future.
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I'm 44. Hardly anybody my age has "elderly" parents - yet! It's coming people!

My mother's mom lived into her 90s. Mom's oldest sister is going to do the same. I honestly can't tell where my mom is headed or what the roadmap is. Nobody can know.
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