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Feeling guilty. As I have posted before, I have 5 kids, 3 are young. My mom lives behind me and I have been caring on and off for her for many years. The last two have been almost constant. I am burned out and my youngest kids are struggling with all the time grandma is requiring. I finally have hired in three aides. One for an hour in the mornings to get her up and ready. One from 1-3 to help to bathroom and clean house as needed, and one at night to get her to bed. It's weekdays only. I will do weekends. This frees me up to be with my children and visit mom so we can have quality time instead of all my time with her being just to perform daily tasks. And I will still be helping in between as needed. I should be relieved but as its getting closer I am feeling so guilty about it. Am I wrong to hire in help? Am I shirking my duty? I have been feeling so resentful of her needing me all the time and how it is effecting my kids. I feel like this will give mom and I our relationship back as well. But why the guilt?

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I know saying "don't feel guilty" won't help but....don't feel guilty. You did a loving thing for your mom in hiring caregivers and the way you described it solves all the issues. You get to spend more time with your own family and will have the energy to pop in and out at your mom's just to have nice visits with her.

You did a very positive thing!
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Not wrong to hire help! I've seen many threads that share this theme and it's a war/battle in and with hearts and minds. Add in family, friends and/or neighbors to pour on the guilt and consternation if we don't do literally all the care ourselves every moment of the day.

This is something we all struggle with at some point in time and it takes a certain mental will and discipline not to get caught up with feeling guilty over doing something that is showing love for our parents AND for ourselves. We simply cannot do it all and be everything to them 24/7. We are not built that way and the costs are often disastrous with loss of self, loss of marriage/relationships and the ultimate loss, death.

It didn't take me long to understand this in my own situation. It's bad enough to feel held hostage by them or others, but then worse when he hold ourselves hostage. We can get away from them, but no escaping ourselves. You need to be well and functioning on all levels for your own health, your family and parent. Not to mention others who dearly love and need you too and want you to be around. I'm learning to take those thoughts captive in Christ.

Please, please, please don't feel bad. Swat those thoughts right away! And do it often:-)
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Kannie, re-read your above plans for the hired help. That was the best schedule planned ahead that I have seen so far. Can you update us how that has worked out, and how is your mom today?
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Boundaries, boundaries, boundaries. Like fences make good neighbors, boundaries make good relationships.

Unless your mother is emotionally blackmailing you, there is no reason for feeling guilty. You are very right in hiring help and that boundary might help your relationship with her.

Frankly, as a mom, your main duty is to your own children. I guess that since you don't mention a husband that must mean you are a single mom which limits your energy and time even more.

How young are your younger ones?

My wife and her sister were basically abandoned by their mother in taking care of her mother and then her aunt. On the other hand, all they experienced from her what the verbal abuse of someone with borderline personality disorder with some very strong narcissistic traits.

While your children need you, you also need to regain balance in your own life so that you can breathe. You are valuable as well. Don't sell yourself short or put yourself under the bus. When do you ever get a chance to do something just for you that you enjoy?

Take care, keep in touch.

Love, prayers and hugs
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Kannie,
I was reading your post and trying to figure out the reason for your guilt. Hiring those people to help your mom sounds like a very loving and caring thing. I'm confused why this would make you feel guilty.

Are these people you have hired sufficient to care for her? I couldn't find what her condition is. Does she need round the clock care? That's the only thing I would consider. Some people due to mobility and/or dementia, can't be left alone at all, but assuming that's not the case with your mom, then I don't see the problem. You kids are only young once, I wouldn't miss time with them when someone else could help with mom's needs.
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U R NOT WRONG.!!!!
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Here is a schedule for 24/7x365 days:
It cannot be done without help, without losing your sanity.
12 hour shifts x 3 persons when things get worse.
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Kannie, there is nothing wrong with hiring help for your Mom. If you don't do it, your Mom could outlive you as you try to balance two busy households.
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Sendmehelp, the schedule has worked well. My mom has been a bit difficult in not accepting the help. That's really not worded right. She accepts the help but as soon as they leave will call me with a need. I had to get rid of the morning aide on Mondays and Wednesday's because she came "too early" for mom and mom would demand to go back to bed. One hour later she would call me to get her up. She would be wet and I would have to redo everything the aide did. So I got rid of the aides those two days. Silly to pay someone for me to go back over an hour later. The other three mornings are working out. The first week was hard on me as I felt guilty but the second week, oh my, such freedom!! No more guilt!
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Kannie, I feel guilty too! Not just for getting help. If I eat without mom and she's so thin and dad's on a feeding tube. If I watch a film or tv show and don't include them, if I get a manicure and don't bring mom, the list is endless. I know it's not logical and I try to control my guilt. It's like self pity, you can't let it get the best of you.
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