cmagnum Posted January 2012

The Caregiver & Dysfunctional Families: How are you doing?

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Many of us, myself included, come from a dysfunctional family which adds a lot of weight to the challenges of caregiving. I have read stores on various threads on other topics and decided it would be good to have a thread just for this topic for people to share, vent and discuss.

The idea for this thread originated on the thread named "The Caregiver....How are YOU doing today?"

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bookworm Nov 2012
Oh, Gabby! I feel so sorry for your mom. I can understand (somewhat) my family's attitude to the parents. We were raised in a very, very dysfunctional family. If I hadn't "found God" at age 23, I would have walked out and not look back. But, for regular family (loved, cared for, etc...), I just don't understand why the kids are so selfish. It's only me, me, me and me. They could have just visited or celebrated TG in the mid morning at your place or the night before. There are all kinds of ways of celebrating any holiday with their parent (if they did not want said parent on Their Holiday Celebration) by visiting said parent. You know - Compromise. Sigh... My bro and his family of next door - celebrated TG at our Front Porch but not one of them went inside to at least greet the parents.
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Gabby503 Nov 2012
It's been about a week since I've been here. Most of my extra time (what little I have) has been spent trying to keep my mother too occupied to think about her other 3 children that really show no concern for her. We had a quiet Thanksgiving....just me and my mother. I never assume that we will receive an invitation, so we shopped for a Thanksgiving meal for just the 2 of us. It wasn't until late last night that my niece called and invited her to dinner, but she declined the offer. Mom thought it would make me feel bad since I did my best to make sure that we were able to have a celebration, even if it was just the 2 of us. I insisted that if she wanted to go, that I would gladly make sure she gets there. She sees me everyday......she sees them maybe 4 or 5 times a year. She told me that she wanted to stay right here at home since this home & this comfortable life that I try to give her is what she is most thankful for. Of course, I was in tears by then.

So we spent our day cooking & laughing. But out of the blue, she looked at me and asked, "What's wrong with my children???? What have I done that makes them treat me this way????" I had no answers because I could never do that to my mother & I certainly didn't understand how my siblings could.

We blessed our meal & gave thanks. I'm thankful for being able to do whatever I can for my mother, and she was thankful for me. It was a very powerful moment for us.
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lildeb Nov 2012
Cmagnum, I do feel for you n I do hope you n your family have a very blessed holiday. Look at that, u r their n able to at least try n help your son with the car situation. Also, that your wife can at least walk around a little bit with the crutches. That at least u have two sets of clothes that u have washed n r ready if you still decided to go on that trip. She is at least not going butt naked. I had to throw that in for you need to get a sense of humor with the mess you got going on. However, You are manage everything that crosses your path n that is amazing n I admire your strength n love that you are able to give during this time. Don;'t forget about yourself n take time to breath. Again, I hope that you n your family have a blessed n safe Thanksgiving. Smile we all love you....
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cmagnum Nov 2012
This afternoon, we saw the doctor for my wife's knee surgery pre-op. The surgeon did not back me up today about not going at all. He did tell my wife that she could walk on that sprained ankle using her crutches, but if it is not healed in time for knee surgery on the opposite leg on December 6th to let him know. He also told her to just use the crutches to hope to the bathroom in the hotel room vs taking the bedside toilet. Well, the pre-op visit today was not a total lost, but once he said what he did about walk on it using your crutches, I made sure to ask about the trip and about the beside toilet. My wife only has three outfits that she can wear in this cold weather with her left knee brace and right foot ankle splint. I'm washing two of them tonight so that all three are clean for our three day trip. Also, the doctor did not think my wife qualified for our insurance to cover home health care now or post op.

This morning, we had to get some maintenance work done on our youngest son's car. The EGR valve had gone bad and a transmissioin sensor that keeps you from starting the car in gear. I've gotten my Highlander some running boards and had those put on today by the same mechanic.
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Margeaux Nov 2012
Bookworm,

Thanks for the email and pointers about the Stress.
I really liked especially the last one, love chocolate!
Much Love, Margeaux
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cmagnum Nov 2012
This is a very big battle for me since I don't like confrontation and my wife like my mother is not submissive. Tonight's getting into bed problems made her wonder outloud about the beds in the hotel. Maybe she will wake up in the morning in more ways than one.

Rest sure is important and last night, I did not get much sleep. With her limited mobility, I got her some depends and a bed pad last night. Today, I checked out a bedside toilet from our church and rented a transport chair to help her in the house. Unlike last night, she could not get up into our bed tonight for it is on the high side and she is short. So, she is sleeping in the lowest bed we have. Our oldest son will just have to sleep in his brother's room since his brother likes to sleep on the sofa. What a day and week, this has turned into. Wew!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Good nite!
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golden23 Nov 2012
cmag - scripturally you are the head of the house. It sounds like far too much to drive, visit in the lobby, take a toilet etc.. I agree that it is a bad idea. Your wife has a limiting physical condition - it comes to us all sooner or later. What would her doctor say about her taking the trip? Would he back you up? I think you could just say no. It definitely is in everyone's best interests. (((((hugs)))) Joan
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cmagnum Nov 2012
Margeaux, my wife will not listen to reason about not leaving home for Thanksgiving which I and my therapist thinks is a bad idea. We also don't think the doctor will go forward with the knee surgery on December 6th when he learns about her injuries on her good leg tomorrow in our pre-op meeting. She wants to take the bedside tolliet that we have borrowed from church with us to use in the hotel room. This is going to be a rough holiday. I guess that I could have said, well I'm not driving you there no matter how bad you want to go because you are in no condition to go. BTW, she talked with her mother today and told her that she and her sister could visit her in the hotel lobby while we are up there. That's great. :(. This means 3 days of eating out or taking out and bringing back to the hotel for 4 people over 3 days with two nights in the hotel. I'm ready to exploud!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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oh boy, I definitely fit in here. I am the caregiver for my ex mother in law who lives with my ex husband. He is an addict, and she has dementia and is mean, mean mean. I got the job of caregiver by default, but there is no one else, and I seem to be able to calm her down and get her to listen. But I don't know how to deal with her smart aleck behavior and meanness.
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195Austin Nov 2012
Envision since she will not help herself-call social services there are services available for those with little or no money give her a week or two to find other living arrangements and be firm she did not avail herself to the lifeline you gave her and will never clean up her act if you provide a home for her-you do not deserve to be treated like this by anybody.
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