Anyone else feel like a slave?

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My 82 year old dad is in a group home. I stress myself out calling and going to see him, but the only time I hear from him is if he needs me to do something. I have 2 older sisters, but they are no help whatsoever so it falls to me and my husband. My dad can be very, very difficult to deal with. He expects us to be at his beck and call. We've told him time and time again we both work, have our own family and have our own health issues.

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That is some serious disrespect and contempt.
If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it is just not some sweet old lady talking.

This behavior must stop because not even a slave deserves that. Hire a housekeeper to come in just for that, instruct the housekeeper in front of your mother to just pick up all the tissues, bottles, empty the trash, and this nice lady here will be paying you today. Then walk away. Be sure to explain to housekeeper that you will be adding a little bonus for hazard pay.
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Kootie, you say you call your dad and it stresses you out, and then you say he calls you alot? Stop calling him..LOL let him continue to call you, and let the answering machine handle it, Then call back once a day (if needed) and handle it all at that time if possible? If you are not so readily available maybe he will realize what you are telling him about your and hubs health. He is in a group home, surely they can handle some things? He has you trained to run when he calls.. you need to take back some charge here!
And Jessie,, what sort of trash is she throwing on the floor? nasty smelling stuff or just papery junk? Maybe I would let it lay for awhile ( and I am OCD so I know how hard this could be)... But if she wants to sit around in trash.. so be it. If she gets on your case about the mess,, remind her it's her mess...LOL and if she wants to live in filth you will be glad to relocate to her liveing area, bedroom,, wherever she wants. Since she is sooo attached to it and doesnt think it belongs in the trash can.
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I agree with Pamzimmrtt, you do not have to answer the phone. Even though you've told him not to call and he does it anyway means he doesn't respect your boundaries. The more his behavior gets his desired response the more he will continue to do it. Since he doesn't have dementia and is only calling because he needs you to get something, then there is no emergency. Here is my suggestion...buy him a small pocket size spiral notebook and tell him when he needs something to start a list and add to it. You will call before your Saturday visit and bring him those things then. If you must, type up a list with bullet points to remind him of the new protocol that you've decided upon. Such as: do not call to tell me you need an item, put it on the notebook list, do not call me at work, I will call on Friday to see what you need, we will take you to lunch on Saturday etc.
You should not feel guilty for wanting to have peace of mind and quality of life. You are not there for his every demand. The more you set boundaries the easier it becomes. Bravo that you cut out the Wednesday visit.
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Oh, yes. I told my mother she should have bought a slave instead of having a daughter. Her recent thing is throwing all her trash and water bottles on the floor for her slave to pick up. It feels a lot like contempt. I know she could at least put the bottles on the table, instead of throwing them on the floor. She could actually put them in the garbage, but she is lazy. Lord, help us through this disrespect!
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I'm not sure what your dad's circumstances are, but my mom is going into the advanced stages of dementia. Obviously she doesn't know any better, but when I am at her house, she treats me like a maid. She will hand me a used tissue and tell me to throw it away or to do this or that. One day I told her that I wasn't her maid but her response was "you're younger than me". I am 64 years old and her dementia has aged me like I can't believe. Now when I get to her house with her dinner every night, I bow down in front of her and ask what "Madame would like". It kind of breaks the tension, and after 2 minutes, when she forgets I do the same thing!
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Kootiebear, you have described my Dad to a T. He told my sister and I that it was our responsibility to take care of him. He only called when he wanted something. When I went to visit, he would start giving me orders before I even got in the door. I got to the point I dreaded it when he called, so I set boundaries. I only answered the phone once a day. I made a list of his wants, shopped for them once a week & then delivered them that day. I still felt guilty, but I just couldn't handle the constant demands & griping. He was in a very nice AL facility and I knew he was being taken care of. He passed away recently, but I have no regrets about his care. Between the AL facility, my sister & I, he got the best of care & his every need was met. Just not in the way he thought he was entitled to.
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My husband is bedridden, only able to feed himself and nothing else. He was in rehab for 4 months and made only minimal progress. I am the only one who cares for him. We were married 43 years ago when most women WERE treated like shaves and expected to be. We were raised that way and so were our mom's.

I am "on duty" all day, every day. If I get angry enough and blow up, he will be "nice" to me for a few hours. The other day he told me I "need to learn to shut up". This is absolutely not how I expected to spend my retirement. I have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome plus arthritis so bad in. Y shoulders I can't lift. Y arms above my shoulders. My husband weighs 350 pounds but I have to roll and pull him over, move his medical equipment and change his bed and diapers. I have a health aide once a week, but she is not there to clean up his diarrhea or deal with his verbal abuse.

I am seeing my PCP today, and I am going to ask her to provide the name of a counselor or I will lose it completely.

Know that you cannot be used unless you let yourself be. Dad is safe and cared for and you don't need to supervise him. There is staff for that. You have the opportunity that I don't. You have someone else to watch over Dad while you go on with your business of daily living. Distance yourself as you can from this. Keep in touch with his caregivers and don't worry so much! Good luck!
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Coralmae, No he does not have dementia. He has been evaluated several times and he has his mental faculties. He has pretty much been a pain in the behind all his life. My mom use to complain about him and I just thought she wasn't being compassionate enough. Now that she is no longer with us and I am stuck with him, I totally understand her frustration.
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All sounds very familiar, my Dad keeps telling me that I do too much and I am always rushing about, when I say he is very much part of the rushing about, he looks at me as if I am speaking alien! When I am 5 minutes late, he texts or calls me, wanting to know where I am! I have posted on here before recently about being torn between so many responsibilities. Today I took in to the GPS, accompanied him shopping, walked his dog and when I carried in the shopping and said I'd see him later, he wanted to know why I was rushing off!
What can you do... sometimes I cry , walk away or answer back . It seems as if they lose any perspective on life but their own. Hope you can reduce your stress. I too dread calling him as it just unleashes more problems to deal with. Take rest when you can and step back.
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I agree with Harpcat - that your dad needs a notebook that will stay handy - room for big print, whatever works for him at this stage. And you call and visit on your schedule, twice a week is fine - and when you are there, if other items, put them on the list for next week's list. If there is an answering machine, let him leave an item on that. I don't think negatives work very well, but by emphasizing the plan - OK, good, that's an important item, I'll put it on the list, and I'll bring it on my Tues visit.... you are then refusing, in your mind and actions - to do more than you plan, yet you are positive about what you are doing, and reliable, or apologize if you forget something.

Many people need to allow actions to teach, reinforce the plan, and let the upset sit there, "I'm sorry, I can come on those days, and I'm glad to come. I hope you'll help me to know any items you want by my call on Tues AM."

A great social worker years ago helped me with my disabled brother that I helped to start adulthood. She asked both of us in the presence of each other, how often we each wanted to see each other. I said twice a week, he said every day. "Fine", she said. "Both of you take responsibility for the time you choose: Joe, you call Cassie and ask for anything you need or want; Cassie, you only call Joe the twice a week that you chose, and answer his calls as fits your time otherwise. Fact is, he never called - he just wanted to get me to take care of him as mother used to do - and I stopped feeling responsible for every moment during the week, focused on my time. The issue was to get ME to stop worrying if he got upset, just say, sorry you were worried, here's what I can do - and accept inside, for YOU, that you are doing a great and valuable job.

Every once in a while, there will be an emergency, and it matters to hear those - but don't give in on the phone right away, say, you'll see what you can do. Decide off the phone, and maybe it's, "I'll be there tomorrow instead of Tues" or you can get to know the staff and call and ask them to find someone to get what he wants.

It's a shame if negative attitudes build resentments. Worth it to consider, choose, and affirm often that you're glad to be in touch. Start your own list of names and numbers of whom to call if you can't do something soon. If you know you are paying steady attention, you are doing your best, and letting them fuss if you stick to a plan. They gradually come round!
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