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My aunt died in the post-op rehab facility on the 28th. For her, it was probably a blessed release. Her sister, who is my mother, is like a vulture picking over her meager belongings and accusing (everyone) of pilfering my aunt's stuff. That's irritating, but she is in dementia herself, maybe an early stage, so it was to be expected. I will just minimize my contact with my mom so that I don't get triggered, at least until I have a bit more closure about my innocent old auntie, who was mentally handicapped since birth and who had a sad, lonely, confusing life for 73 years.


My stepmom, 81, fell a few weeks ago and insisted that "exercising" was the solution, so she kept making it worse. Never listened to me or the doctors. She also refuses to use her walker because they're for "weaklings", so she fell AGAIN a week ago. She's been lying on her back, writhing in pain in bed, sucking down Extra Strength Tylenol. Refuses to go to the doctor's for another set of xrays. So on Sunday, I said, "That's it. We're going to the doctor's on Monday." Compound fractures/severe osteo/on codone now.


I spoke to the doctor this morning who said instead, to take her to emergency. So poof! There went my work day. I'm worried my company is suffering because of their endless needs. I barely know my stepmom, but today, for the 3,000,000 time, I heard all about her eldest brother's eldest daughter's high school play (the kid is now older than me, and my stepmom has never met her even once!), and how her other brother Ben, "Why he was so funny, one time he said to Mother..." except it happened at least 8 years before she was even BORN and I've heard that story SO many times. I smile sweetly, do my duty, but later feel waves of rage at everyone else in the entire world...like the dingbat at the pharmacy who double parked and the ditzy girl who...you get it.


Then my biological mother called today to whine (and I do mean whine) about why I never come visit her...just as I was finally leaving the pharmacy to go BACK to my stepmom and bio dad's house for the third round trip today...


Tonight, my introverted, entitled boyfriend called around 8 PM and told me his news for the day. I really wanted to interrupt and say, "I don't give a $%^&!" But I got through his monologue and then he had the AUDACITY to say, "So tell me about your day in 10 words or less, because I don't want the whole story like usual." I wanted to beat him senseless!


Three people today were incredibly kind. Two of them were the electricians I'm trying to hire to come rewire my late grandpa's dilapidated house - at my expense, so that I can sell it and give every penny to my mom and her husband in exchange for "letting" me live here while I care for them. One said, "You spent six hours at the hospital today? You must have wings!" I felt like weeping when he said that, a man I've never even seen in person.


The third one who was SO kind was my stepmom when I brought back her medicine. But in between, all I could think of was, "Why did I get my Covid shots when all four of them tell me daily they want to die?"


I want to run away.
I want to stop being their daughter/slave girl
I want to be 100% selfish and go back to the beach city I come from and leave them all to die in this ugly, dilapidated midwestern town.
I miss all my friends at home and I am so soul-lonely here!
I want to live the second half of my 50s completely on my own terms, spending my time and money on things that matter to me and only me.
I want to change my phone number.
I wish I hadn't volunteered to help all these people.


OK. If you've read my outburst this far, you're a freakin' saint. I had to get this off my chest in a place where other people "get it" and know how flippin' hard this is to do this. I feel like they are sucking every ounce of life out of me. I feel like the Dread Pirate Roberts in Princess Bride when he's strapped to the machine by the evil count! (Ha ha!)

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It is so hard. So.hard. Please, do something tomorrow to make yourself feel a moment's joy and then savor it as you need it. How can we live without joy or hope? I send you a big hug and please know I felt the same way today about wanting to give up. I acted in a way completely abnormal for me because it is just so taxing. Please, anyone reading this who has strength to give a caretaker a break, help them. We all need it dearly.
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Hugging you and ready to run - jog - walk or drag by tired body right along side of you :)
Good for you for purging!! You Aced step one!!
I see that there are many comments so hopefully there is good advice in them because I’m off to do meds - bath and changing and I will have to come back and gather suggestions alongside you for step 2!
Just know - you are not alone - every one of us has looked at that front door and had the vision of what it would be like to RUN out of it. For now I just wanted to say just that - “good for you” purge away! 💓
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Hi. While my heart goes out to you, I love your story. You manage to find a little humor in all the chaos, still maintain your sanity, and fulfill Matthew 22:39 (having an acceptable god-oriented measure of love for self and others).
Your ability to articulate the drama surrounding your circumstances is extraordinary! Keep sharing your experiences with others who can both empathize and sympathize, or in a journal, or/and in prayer. Doing so, may just be a good way for you to carry on day to day. Take each day as it comes. As you continue to look for kindness you will find it-because he/she who is truly kind readily sees it in others. Keep your sense of humor.
If/when our days look a little more helter-skelter and weighs on you mentally, there's a remedy that can help us reboot. I like to pick something positive to ponder from the list of things to consider given in Bible book Philippians 4:8 (things that are chaste, lovable, well-spoken of, virtuous... )
Take care of yourself and recognize and respect your limitations.
Thank you for sharing your story.
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I so understand and so don't judge you..... Although my sister and mom have since passed away... I felt so many of the things you are feeling during the 5 years they were sick, ill, and eventually passed. the first weekend I didn't have to get in my car and begin my 600 mile round trip to see them in 2 different LTC, and Demenia locations..... after 3 years of trying to care for them in their homes.... working full time and spending my weekends caretaking..... I didn't know what to do with myself... I felt like a stranger in my own home.
Now... 2 years later... I realize what an amazing experience it all was. I am thankful for the time I spent doing it... although there was no appreciation on the other end, due to family history and dementia.... I came to realize, it was just the way it was meant to be.... Good luck and prayers to get you through your journey....
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I can relate and am only carrying half your load. Thanks for your honesty. Yesterday was a struggle for me. My Mom has advanced dementia and lives with me. She was totally "off her rocker" and I was very snarky. I didn't want to be mistaken all day for my dead aunt or unravel word salad. I appreciate your rant. Hang in there sister 🌹.
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you are a saint and I think you need to blog, because I can relate to everything you are saying, and yes it is crazy nuts ridiculous, and that wish list you made I want too, you are a really cool person. I know this is probably nuts, and where will you find the time, and not very helpful, but you should write a book about your experiences. I enjoyed reading your rant :) I had a really bad day... sorry
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You need to take a brake. Do it for yourself
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Imho, the moral of your story is that there ARE STELLAR individuals in this world and you are one of them.
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SS, Q1 are the 4 still living in their own homes?

Q2 On a scale of 1. independant (like the Golden Girls) to 5. Fully Dependant (like a rag doll) where would each one be?

Q3 if you went on holidays, who would be OK & who would be left in danger?
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Wow first of all you are amazing and don't you forget it. You have too much on your daily schedule something has too change or you are going to lose it! You need to reach out to other family members or get outside help for your stepmother who should be very grateful for all you are doing for her. I know it is so hard taking care of a loved one I take care of my husband of 32 years. You give up so much and you can lose so much of yourself in the process. As I stated above, you need to makes some serious changes and you boyfriend sounds like a jerk too. I wouldn't blink an eye if you did just get on a plane and go back to the west coast. I wish you luck and I hope you are going to do something to make your life better for you not your loved one. Hang in there dear lady!
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I remember your previous post. I'm sorry for the loss of your aunt. Why wouldn't you feel like running away, you still have 4 left. I often feel like running away. My husband's health is starting to decline and I feel he is becoming demented. He's always had a forceful personality but gets easily offended if I treat him the way he treats me. I am sort of a caregiver to my soon to be 88 yo mother - who thankfully is relatively healthy and doesn't have many needs, MCI is her biggest problem at this point - other than still being unable to leave the ALF she lives in - though thankfully she is again allowed to have visitors again. Dad was my problem child before he died - and he wasn't that bad - just the constant calls he again fell - I swear a weekly event at least. By his death his bones must have been made of rubber - at the end more of a slide to the floor rather than bone breaking splat. Anytime the phone range early in the morning or late in the evening I would cringe because I knew what the call was about.

I am lucky both my parents entered the facility in Independent living, moved to AL when dad kept falling; then dad moved from AL to SNF where he died about 4 months later.

You on the other hand have 4 high demand care-ees. I too would want to run away. You need to delegate. As much as possible they need to take some responsibility for themselves - I realize that is not possible with those suffering from dementia. Make a schedule and stick to it - except of course in emergencies - an emergencies are broken bones (step mom), fires, earthquakes, pestilence and the like. Make them spend their money on their needs - not your money - what will you use when you're their age? I was also lucky in my parents were and are grateful for what I do and insist on paying for my gas or lunch (preCovid). Make lists of who needs what.

Whether they like it or not they need to get some in home help - you can't do it all and you need a vacation at least a long weekend to recharge. I don't know how you do what you have done? You are amazing and I'm glad one of the three kindnesses shown you was from your step-mother.

I also suggest you learn how to virtually scream - I took this up at one of my jobs I had over the years. It doesn't take much to stress me out and get to the flight or fight mode. I found opening my mouth, scrunching up my eyes and shaking my head back and for while looking at the ceiling and doing a totally silent scream (just releasing some air, so inhale first) really helped me release some tension. It did make my co-workers laugh as they observed my totally insane action. I'd also get some strange looks from other drivers while I practiced this at stop lights.
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I totally understand where you're coming from because I literally feel nauseous when I wake up in pain myself and know that I have to come & deal with my mom's Dementia, Anxiety & Halleucinations. I feel guilty for feeling this way but I do understand that it's the disease and it's getting worse really fast. Just like we keep telling each other: Just hang in there and PRAY because GOD is going to make a way thru all of this.
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Wow - I can 100% relate to your feelings even though I am only caring for my Mom with dementia. One person. YOU are indeed the freaking saint. Vent away. That's the very least you an do for yourself.

I don't know if you have any chance of getting these people placed or cared for by someone other than you, but I hope that you can regain your life soon without any regrets or guilt. Volunteering is not meant to be a life sentence. You have done more than your part and deserve to enjoy your life. If you don't have that opportunity, know that you have a community here who completely understand how you feel.
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Sending you a huge virtual hug. You need a safe place to vent, and here there are people who understand and are going thru the same thing. I can't offer you any different advice than what has already been said; just take what you can from all the experience on this post.
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Some of us have or have had irrational thinking when it comes to caregiving.

We placed their needs above ours. Why aren’t our needs equally as important?

We realize our needs count just as much, but for whatever reason we never found the courage to act on behalf of our own interests.

Until you decide to value yourself equally to those that you care for, nothing will change.

You are deserving of a wonderful life. Please take your life back.

Haven’t you lost enough time? With each passing day, more and more time is slowly slipping away.

I know that you care for all of your parents but be honest with yourself.

You bit off more than you can chew. It’s time to make permanent plans for others to care for them.

Then you can visit with them without the hardship of bearing the heavy responsibility on your shoulders.

Trust me, I have been in your shoes. It will only get worse, it never gets any easier.

Go speak to a therapist. I did. They will help you sort out your emotions and hopefully you will start thinking rationally again.

You won’t be depriving your loved ones of anything. In fact, you will be helping them a great deal by allowing them to receive around the clock care.

I realize that you are seeking comfort and want compassion. I do have compassion for you but look at the answers that will help you the most.

Compassion from others won’t solve your problems. Hearing viable solutions to your situation does help.

Speak to a social worker that deals with the elderly. Ask your parent’s doctors to put you in touch with a social worker. Get a phone number or email and get started on this right away.

I pray that you will find the courage to do this. If you don’t take these steps forward you are allowing the agony to continue for everyone involved.
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What you are feeling is quite normal and do not feel guilty. I have a belief and it is when people around you, due to physical and mental behaviors, do things that are affecting you and destroying you, and you have a right to a normal life, it is time to do something - and sometimes that means placing them into a facility. You cannot allow them to do this to you or you will go down the boob tube. Start investigating your options - there is help - you just need to search so you can solve this problem. And as to your boyfriend, there are two points to be made. First of all, anyone would get mad if they heard the same issues over and over and over again. This is true especially if nothing is done to fix them. Second, maybe you should find a different boy friend who is more empathetic ad compassionate and loving and understanding.
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I'm sorry that some of the responses don't seem to get what you are going through. Most of us who are caregivers know exactly how you feel. We often want to run away, be selfish, question our decisions to become a caregiver, and miss our old lives. But these feelings don't mean we don't care for our elderly loved ones. If we didn't we wouldn't be caregivers in the first place. We realize that our loved ones are in their last years and we sincerely want to make their last years as comfortable and happy as possible. But it does often feel like the life is being sucked out of us.
My 95 year old mother lives with me and there are daily "minors" that I have learned to ignore or I would go stark raving mad. I hope you can find some time for yourself to recharge. What makes you happy?? It's ok to find time for yourself. It's kind of like the instructions on an airplane to put your air mask on first then tend to others.
Know that you are not alone and prayers are coming your way.
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Yes getting old is hard and I'm sure it sucks for the people who are going through their illnesses as well because they once had a life that they were able to be selfish in as well.. They once had a life where they didn't have to care about anybody else and they were able to do whatever they wanted and spend their money on themselves too...but then they got sick. I've been a caregiver and hospice provider for 20 years now,
there are times that I feel like dragging up but never do I WISH leaving anybody to die in an ugly dilapidated place. And it sounds like you've been able to live your selfish life (as you said), for quite some time & this is a Thorn In Your Side for what may be a couple of years??...why don't you realize that their life is ending and your life will continue..... and you'll be able to go back to your nice life🙏
I can usually identify with people and the issues they're going through, but IT SEEMS YOUR REAL PROBLEM IS THE BOYFRIEND, and you're taking it out on these very very elderly people.
I have been through some Whoppers in my caregiving time. I have done live in hospice, taken care of dysfunctional families, etc. and let me tell you,
if it wasn't for my awesome husband...
a good support man and my TEAM member, my spirituality, love, kindness and understanding.. I never would have made it through all these years💕🙌
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Yes, I read to the end. Perhaps you could feel yourself being enveloped in a virtual hug from afar?

I do not do any hands on care, but I was talking to a couple fellows on Monday who are drawing up a plan to replace the septic system on a family property. It going to be very expensive, upwards of $30K. And no, I should be be the one doing the work, but the property is in a trust and I am a remainderman. The person who is legally responsible for the repairs, Dad spends all his money hoarding and prepping.

There are an additional $20K in repairs that need doing, at least half this year to prevent further deterioration of the house.

Mum is suffering from depression triggered by a complete lack of activities during Covid. She has become needy and I cringe when I see her name on my call display. It gives a sense of my state of mind, that when I son told me he had possibly been exposed to Covid (I was with him on Eater Weekend), I was happy that I could tell Mum I would be seeing her for 2 weeks.

Luckily contact tracing has determined that the person who got Covid was exposed after he had finished working on the job site I son was working on. I will have to tell Mum later today as she is worried about her grandson.

Feel free to rant about your days here. And your fellow needs a lesson or two on tact, or perhaps your relationship needs a reality check?
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Your feelings and your post are full of stress. You probably need to have better boundaries and a good plan for your life. You are more than the "just servant to everybody" - and that includes the boyfriend. May I suggest a good start - read any of the "boundary books" by Townsend and Cloud. They are counsellors that have successfully helped people deal with difficult behavior of others - and you have a family full of these type of people. May I also suggest that you see a counsellor to help you outline your responsibilities to family, boyfriend, and your own life and to help you make a plan for moving forward from the situation you are in. There are options other than feeling like your life is being sucked out of you. Praying you surround yourself with kind people who can help.
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I totally get you. And despite others telling you to put yourself first and run away or just say "no", you will not because you are inherently the kind of person who just cannot turn your back.
So.....find yourself help in other ways. See if you can find and hire a Geriatric Mgr. to handle your Stepmom's care. Develop your own schedule whereby you do errands and/or visit ONLY during those days and times. Inform them both and post it on your Mom and your Stepmom's fridge and be firm about not being there if you're not scheduled to be.
Install wifi cameras so you can monitor them from your smartphone. Arrange for a neighbor to make a daily or bi-weekly call or brief personal "check-in".
The point here is not to wait for their permission to do anything because you will never get it. They are feeling entitled to you being at their beck and call. You can't control their feelings, but you can set small boundaries, which will help you catch your breath and maybe take stronger steps in the future.
My heart goes out to you, you are a humble, kind warrior! Find comfort knowing we caregivers share and feel your pain. And keep that sense of humor! The beach - I promise - will be there whenever you are ready.
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I had lost the thread but remember you writing about your Aunt recently. I am truly sorry for your loss. (((Hugs)))

It does all.sound exhausting & time for some self-care.

Book a holiday to that Beach City & start looking around? A seachange does sound like a wonderful plan...

You know it sounds silly, but this book really helped me.
The life changing magic of tidying up by Marie Kondo (aka Konmari).

Find what sparks joy. Beautiful, useful or treasured memory. Discard the rest.

Many people found their boyfriend & many relatives also in the 'discard' pile... 😉
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I totally get it and bless your heart! You wrote many things that I feel daily. My 90 year old dad lives with us. My husband and I have been married 30 years. This should be the time in our lives where we’re traveling, like all our friends and family. I get soooo tired of seeing everyone else’s trips and vacations. My dad has dementia and can’t be left alone. My mom passed away 4 years ago, from dementia and now I’m going through it with him. It’s hard! Sometimes I get mad at him for absolutely no reason. He’s such a good patient. Never complains and will eat anything I put in front of him. So I realize I’m lucky in that aspect. But....I’m totally home bound! He is pretty much bed bound because he can’t walk. We have cameras in his room and I have taught him to shake his walker when he needs to get up. I swear I hear that walker rattling in my sleep!! My husband is very supportive but will not change his depends or help him wipe! Lol. I totally understand that. He will stay home with him on the weekends sometimes so I can at least get out for a few hours. It’s just hard being a caregiver as you know. It’s like we, as caregivers have absolutely no life. I told myself after we finally had to put my mom in assisted living that I would never do that to him. I’ve tried hiring people to come sit with him while we get out for a few hours together but he doesn’t want anyone but ME! I literally get sick to my stomach when I know I have to give him a shower. It’s such a job!! I love him with all my heart but It’s not easy. I also have a brother that lives 10 mins away that never comes to see him. Oh wait! I take that back. He comes on Christmas Day for 10 mins. Never calls...that’s a whole other topic. Anyway, hang in there and know you’re doing a great job. I also get mad for absolutely no reason at times! Sometimes I just wake up mad😂
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Dear Senior
RUN to the BEACH!!
Dont look back!!
YOLO
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I’m sorry you’re going through this. You are a good person.
Try to get your step mom on Medicaid waver or something. They will come every so often to help with her. They even have a person that will come in cook and sit with her. If you can get her on it then on the days they are there take time for yourself. Enjoy life.
Personally I think you need to find a boyfriend that will help you instead of you having to listen to his complaints.
God bless you
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Sending you a hug today. I pray that you will figure out how to get on w/ your life (with no guilt) before you lose more time.
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You're still capable of smiling, sweetly or otherwise? You are amazing! Thank God someone noticed you're killing yourself. Unfortunately, it was nobody in a position to intervene. You need to step back a little before you crash. And talk to the BF about his stunning lack of supportiveness and listening skills. Tell him he can listen to you vent or he can spend time with your parents and stepmother himself. I wonder which he'll pick. It sounds like you're not living with any of them at least. You don't HAVE to take all the phone calls, listen to the stories and complaints, and let them push you around. The great thing about all volunteering is that they need you a lot more than you need them, so you do have some control. Just remember to use it. If you can't handle the same story again, interrupt and deflect, and either change the subject or leave the conversation (or room). You have a job, errands, and work on their house to take you away from uncomfortable situations. Limit your visits for your own good. Good luck.
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You just need a comeback pill from ‘Miracle Max’ right now. First thing’s first: get a break anyway possible for yourself (anywhere from 3-24 hours), pay for it if you have to. Recharge the battery anyway you can. If you find it’s helpful, start researching the heck out of reputable home health agencies. They can do 10-15 hours per week for you at pretty low rates, which will be a welcome relief throughout the week. This is not a solution but it will be helpful for you. Also: watch Princess Bride....which is ALWAYS a good call!
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I laugh and commiserate with you. Like you I’m RAGING mad, lonely, soul tired, no support, sick and wiped out. Thanks for screaming into the void for me. I don’t have the energy. Hugs to you!
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I so hear you! I just have no advice to give as I feel like you do.
I just wanted to let you know that your are not alone. I have all my sympathy!
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