When the absentee family visits...

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...so after two years, one of my Dad's other children (the one who he gave the house and conveniently disappeared for two years) has obviously received word that Dad has declined and wants to come and visit.


Well, she SAYS she's coming. I've heard it before, but something always "comes up" and she doesn't make it. It took her longer to drive to visit last time than she stayed (I guess about 30 minutes), and I. DON'T. LIKE. HER (or her bratty daughter that called me selfish a couple years ago because I couldn't answer the phone when she called).


Needless to say, I won't be there when they come. I literally can't stand to be in the room with any of them, and I know I wouldn't be able to keep my mouth shut in her presence.


Anyway, I've tried to give her a heads up about Dad's condition since she last saw him, but the control freak in me is all over the place. I don't want Dad upset, and I'm not thrilled that she's going to have an infant with her (apparently the bratty daughter has birthed some demon spawn and wants to show it off).


Is it OK to bring an infant around a legally blind 88 year old with end stage COPD, dementia and limited use of his left hand? I have no idea because I never had the pleasure of having kids. While they post pictures of their MANY vacations on social media (easily paid for since they have NO MORTGAGE!!!! - but complain about the house needing repairs) I've been shouldering ALL of the responsibility.


UGH!!! News of this pending visit has just put me in a foul mood...


On the bright side, my new "warm and fuzzies" toward Dad continue...

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I think the black sheep ends up being less shined upon because with the elders aches, pains, end of life depression - there is a degree of envy. For those of us who are there doing the do for them, we become the background noise which melds into the chaos of their lives as elderly. As such, I think we become "guilty" of or synonymous with all those symptoms that are lumped into the walk to the final line. There is no broader perspective - it seems they are looking for an exit from reality and that may be why they shine with others - they are new, they have some time to refresh their daily routine and it helps them feel renewed and important.

Sadly - we don't get the same and no matter how much we try, their narrow lens is - limited. We are the periphery.
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Tinyblu, it sounds like the visit went better than expected. I am glad that you "used psycho babble" when your sister asked about your Dad's condition and that you left the room instead of getting upset at your sister. KUDOS to you!!!!

In regards to your "Dad...beaming about the visit for the entire weekend", I think that our parents start to "See" the child who is taking care of them as "Staff" and not as "Family". Also, if you think about it, don't you get more excited when you see someone that you haven't seen for a while then when you see or talk to someone that you can see or talk to every day??

Take care of yourself and your Dad.
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Well, I survived the short visit. Thankfully, they didn't bring Bratty Mini Me with them. It was just the daughter and her husband.

The only "negative" I had to deal with was her asking why I didn't tell her "Dad was so bad off..." I bit my tongue. I could have easily gone into a tirade about how his decline would seem a lot more gradual to someone who sees him on a regular basis. Instead, I used psycho babble.

"I'm sure it's hard and hurtful to see Dad in his fragile state. Let's focus on enjoying our time with him rather than his condition... blah, blah, blah. She accused me of patronizing her, and I exited the room.

Of course, Dad has been beaming about the visit for the entire weekend (funny... he never seems so happy to see me... oh well).

It's over. Probably won't have to deal with it for another two years or the...inevitable

There won't be any guilt tears in my future...
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Sorry, but your post gave me a laugh. Like the way you are looking at things.

First, I know where you are coming from, there is always one child who is the caregiver. Where would Dad be if it wasn't for you? Thats how I looked at things with Mom. It looks like, on this forum, that some caregivers get s _ _ t on by family. I love my brothers. Was thanked by them for caring for Mom. But...I did it all and still am. I refused to get mad about it. What goes around comes around. Sometime in their lives they will have to deal with something.

As u have said the daughter spends little time with Dad when she comes. Its like "look what I did for Dad". The baby should be no problem. I think not being there is a good idea. Let Dad have a nice visit and enjoy the new baby. Don't tell him about the visit till your sure she is coming. When you tell him ask him to call you when they leave. Then just ask how the visit went. If he is upset then go help calm him down.

Really, nothing you can do about the other kids. Please, don't let this effect your new attitude. 😊
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Will your Dad be at the AL or at your house when the "other child/children" visit? Even if your Dad is at the AL, I would suggest that you at least "be in the AL building" (sitting in a conference room or out-of-way alcove). Because your Dad has declined so much, I can imagine them yelling at the staff and blaming them even though you "tried to give her a heads up about Dad's condition since she last saw him" You need to be available (but not in the same room), so that you can watch what is happens when they visit and if your Dad overacts or acts out, then you can calm him down.

YOU will need to be as calm and respectful as you can to the other children (despite your history with them--I know that it isn't easy to do. I had to be "nice" to my cousins at their Dad's funeral after they had stolen $75,000+ from our Grandma.) If they stay as "long" as they did last time--30 minutes; I think that you can tolerate them that long. They will try to "get under your skin." Please do not give them the satisfaction by reacting to what they say. Be the "BIGGER PERSON" for the sake of your Dad's wellbeing and show the "other children" how a child should act towards their elderly adult parent. Good Luck.
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In a small way, I know how you feel, Tiny. I have a rather acrimonious relationship with my husband’s family that made me glad I am an only child. Hubby is bedridden and I can’t remember the last time I got a call or email asking how he was doing. My son has tried keeping the family together, but at his last “doings”, no one from the family approached me or asked how Hubby was doing. I decided then that that would truly be the LAST get-together.

Who is going to be with Dad when they visit? No, the baby will be fine. He has nothing contagious. How long are they staying? If it’s just an afternoon, I’d be damned if I’d let them chase me out of the house. Don’t let them bait you with snarky remarks. Smile and say, “Oh, I’m sorry you feel that way. Have another piece of pie?” Come out of it being the better person and smelling like the proverbial rose. Don’t roll around in the mud with them. It covers everyone and makes everyone look the same.

Glad to hear you still have the feelings about Dad. These are what you’ll remember in the difficult days ahead.
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