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Is it wrong for me to be upset with my sister who is helping me during this coronavisrus time take care of our elderly mother?


My older sister is helping me taking care of our 90 yr. old mother during this coronavirus time. We split the week taking care of her. I am with Mom 4 days of the week and she takes care of her on Friday’s and on the weekends.


I just learned that she will be going to a birthday gathering on Thursday evening. Is it wrong for me to be upset with her that she is starting to socialize knowing that she will be putting my mother’s health in jeopardy, as she will be taking care of her the following three days.


Background: We love our mother and years ago we agreed that we wanted Mom to stay at her own home and would not put her in a Home. Our Mother is a very special, sweet lady that dedicated her whole life for her family. It is an Honor and joy for me to take care of her. I was so relieved that she was going to give me a hand so I can have much needed mini breaks. I am the youngest of 3 sisters. (All sisters over 60 yrs. old)


I feel so hurt, as we spoke at the beginning of this coronavirus and we agreed that we would only go out to the the grocery store and agreed that we would not go to gatherings.


I am just venting right now (and crying over this) and wanted to hear from this forum if you think I am wrong in being upset/hurt with her.


Thank you for just being here in this forum.

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You and your sister discussed social distancing at the beginning of this crisis and both of you agreed that you would comply with advice, yes?

Now you have learned that she is planning to go to an indoor event the day before she herself is expecting to take over care for three days.

Have you discussed this particular birthday gathering with her yet? If you haven't, then you're not so much wrong to be upset as getting way ahead of yourself. Talk to your sister about your concerns and ask her to explain.
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Part 2. A plan.
What's the plan if one of you got sick? Covid, regular flu, broken ankle etc? Currently Mother's care would fall 100% on one - leading to caregiver burnout.

What if you both for sick? What about taking holdiays?

Do have also use home help/aides? A respite care service of some kind?

It's fantastic you & your sister are sharing the care & that it's working well. Just be aware there will be a limit that each of you reach on caregiving & it's OK if they differ! You are different people after all!

I know you love your Mother ❤️ but please make a plan that suits you all. Where you all get a life. Please don't fall into the lone caregiver martyrdom if your sister hangs up her hat.

Come back & chat.
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Im the youngest. I thought mom could stay in her home. WE managed until hubby noticied I wasn't sleeping at all. go to moms, follow her all night, get up, and go to my house, and get kid ready for school, then I would go to work, and start all over again... It took a huge toll. getting it together somewhat..

good luck
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Part 1. Risk Firstly, your feelings are not 'wrong'. You feel what you feel. Worry about the risk is understandable.

I think how I'm managing is accepting I cannot remove ALL risk - but to minimise the risk as much as possible.

My children are back at school, part-time job & socialising, my DH & I working. We are all living in this 'new normal'. How & when will it be safe to visit my elders? I don't have an answer 😶.

Your sister has to resume a life. As do you. I would discuss with her being as safe as she can to minimise risk: social distancing & washing hands as soon as home from anywhere. To be viligent for symptoms & stay home if any.
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Give your family a break, before they break out in odd ways. be safe. When she steps out of the car, demand she takes her clothes off down to the niddy griddy's, you are her sister, she knows you, so not too strange. attach a disinectant sprayer to the hose, maybe with a bit of distilled water, and acetone, or bleach, or colored water... amything will work, by golly... point it at her away from the car, dont want to destroy the paint job you know... hit her from head to toe. TAke some copper, any kind will do, pennies, sheets, tubes, balls of copper.. check at home depot they may have some in the cash registers. Throw those at her from 6n feet after you throw beach towels at her... YUP SHE SHOULD BE READY TO GO AND TAKE CARE OF MOM AFTER THAT ,IF SHE IS UP TO IT AFTER YOUR CLEANSING GREETING. PLEASE, PLEASE, REMIND HER YOU WANT A PIECE OF THE BDAY CAKE !!! EVERYONE WANTS A BITE OF THAT CAKE , YOU KNOW,,, WE DON'T GET OUT MUCH NOW....Im substituing sweets for a salad :) yum yum
Get a few balloons for mom, and give her a small racquet to swat at them, get rid of the corona floating in her room,,, the more she pops, the funner it will get.
We have early curfew.. looking on the road, we all seem to be lil marchers driving as told backk to our little juts.. no questions, no racing, .. This is getting really nuts with theprotests, looters and riots... I just want to get to the store before thy close at 5 pm.... no can do....i plan to leave early tomoorry
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I agree with WorriedinCali that you have to start thinking about the long game in your coronavirus strategy for your beloved mom.

I too share the at-home care of a sweet, wonderful frail parent with my sister. We do not want him to get this virus. If possible, we want to shield him until there is a vaccine or MUCH better treatments, reliably effective treatments. But, life DOES go on and unfortunately it is looking as if we may be waiting until at least the end of the year for a vaccine, if Dr. Fauci is correct in his latest estimate. And even then the immunity conferred may not be 100%! And what if it takes longer, or doesn't work out as everyone hopes? This is not pleasant to think about, I know.

Would it be possible to ask your sister for a compromise? Would she be willing to agree to wear a mask except when eating and drinking and to stay outdoors for the party, keeping 6 feet apart as much as possible? I would have to think at least a few other older attendees at the party would be in the same boat and would want to be as prudent as possible while having some much-needed social interaction, say in a fun little group in the backyard or in the driveway. Some people legitimately need that face-to-face time more than others to stay sane, find enjoyment in life, etc.

I am thinking you are going to have to be open to some compromising with your sister about this to avoid the very real risk of damaging your relationship with her. It is also not healthy for you to try to soldier on alone 24/7 somehow without any help. And it is just not sustainable to continue on in high-alert lockdown mode indefinitely. Perfection is just not possible for many of us, on and on into the forseeable future. I know it isn't for me.
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You should he asking yourself how long you are willing to put your life on hold and give up everything to take care of your mother. It now takes 2 of you to keep your mother living at home. Do you realize we now are going on 3 months of this? And that there won’t be an overnight vaccine and herd immunity? I think the problem here isn’t your sisters plans. It’s the unrealistic expectation that you both should drop everything and stop living, stop seeing her friends and other family members indefinitely. I think your approach should be how you all learn to live with this virus.
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I haven’t read anything about building an immunity by contact. Possibly, if you actually get it and have antibodies, but, I would also be upset if my sister, who made a promise changed her mind. I would calmly approach her and explain my concern. If you read about transmission and how it’s greater in indoor surroundings, I’m not sure how she justifies it. It’s still spreading. I would ask her to quarantine at home for 14 days after the party to make sure she’s clear, before she returns to care for mother. Can you take her spot for that time period? If not, I’d get very real with her and ask her to decline the party invitation. Mother’s health is more important. More parties next year.
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Susiei Jun 3, 2020
Thank your for your 14 day quarantine advice. Yes, I would have to take her spot, as there is only her and me taking care of my Mom. I will ask her to quarantine for 14 days before showing up at Mom’s. I was so relieved to finally be able to take little breaks. (I’ve been taking care of Mom straight for 8 years) since her health started to deteriorate. Thank you again.
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If it's an outdoor event, that should be less hazardous than indoors ... IF social distancing is kept.

Do you know any details about the gathering?
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Susiei Jun 3, 2020
It’s an indoor gathering with people that have been out and about in other gatherings. That is why I am so concerned.
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At some point we all have to start living our lives.

I don't think that you should be mad. I am sure that your sister will take precautions to protect herself and your mom.

From everything that I am reading about this bug, you really should be out and about getting exercise and fresh air, it builds your immune system and laughing with loved ones further increases your immunity. Stress on the other hand destroys your immunity.
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