My 72 year old mom has been having issues for the past year. It started with a broken ankle that required surgery, then a kidney infection, then another ankle surgery, then a back issue that required surgery, then more digestive issues, gallbladder removal, cardiac arterial blockage that required two stents, more vomiting and kidney issues, and now likely a procedure requiring a stent in her celiac artery to hopefully address the recurring gastric issues.
She also is the primary caregiver for her 77 YO husband who has Lewy body dementia. I live in another state, my younger brother lives two hours from her and does not have a car (he lives in the city), and my older brother lives 30 minutes from mom. Older brother refuses to talk to any of us, much less assist mom with anything. When things first started happening, he was somewhat helpful, but now he has completely refused to even communicate.
Mom has pretty much refused to communicate plans for the future or put anything in place for her husband, which creates a great deal of anxiety for everyone every time something happens. Funny, she told me Sat that she was going to talk to their financial advisor to discuss options this week, but…now she is back in the hospital.
I am struggling with worry over what will happen to her, and yet I also know that I am not cut out to move her in with me, which I suspect is what she has in mind. I haven’t been able to have that conversation with her because every time I get things started, another crisis comes up. My MIL has told me “you can’t expect your brothers to do anything. You’re the daughter. It’s your job.”
I feel guilty and scared and overwhelmed because things never seem to get better. Mom doesn’t get along with her husband’s kids, and they don’t like to talk to her so they try to go through me to get her to do things. Mom is worried about older brother but doesn’t talk to him, so she tries to go through me.
I’m trying to get my own affairs in order and have been working with a financial planner, but my SO refuses to do this with me, so I am on my own with that as well.
I truly worry that I am going to be expected to figure all of this out for her, and I do not know what I am doing. I believe she is going to make me her POA and I have no idea what that means. I am not knowledgeable with financial matters or legal things. I feel guilty that I cannot seem to do this and I feel like I am failing.
My younger brother is not very financially stable, so I worry about him as well. I wake up every day with a pit in my stomach and I am sad pretty much all the time. My job is great but very demanding, and I’m having a difficult time trying to coordinate things from out of state for my mom while working full time. Also trying to maintain a 30 year relationship that is feeling the strain of this and take care of my own health. I miss being happy, and that makes me feel guilty for being selfish in wanting to be happy.
Does it ever get any better? It doesn’t seem to.