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I am the one who lives closest to my mom. I have taken care of both of my folks for many years. All I asked my brother and sister to do was to call me periodically so I could explain what was happening to my folks. They refuse and only call my mom (dad passed away last year). She doesn't know the full story on most things, but they refuse to call and check it out with me. Now they are trying to tell ME what to do and I'm the one here, they aren't. I'm so frustrated! And they are BARKING orders at me from AFAR! Who this ultimately hurts is my relationship with my mother! Just wondered if there were others out there who have experienced sibling issues. (Also.....my brother handles the finances and is POA from 10,000 miles away!)

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Yes one of the major problems here is that my brothers wife is a thief and was stealing from me and my mum. And they only live down the road my brother visits mum but shes not allowed anywhere near my mum. everything would have been ok here as my brother and his wife could have stayed here and looked after mum is she was a normal caring person but thats not the case and I dont want her anywhere near my mum. Yep in laws cause so much trouble I was close to my brother before he married her and of course he resents me for his wifes stealing and never beleived it so things are hostile between us. My brother is busy every wkend doing things with his wife but never spends time for mum? ive seen the sad look in her eyes when he tells her that he was such and such a place at weekend would it kill him to take her out even once a week for a nice meal? My other brother says let it go he will regret this when mum dies!
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You bet! This site is a great place to get things off your chest. In the end, we can only do our best. Leave the rest in the hands of a higher power. Be good to yourself.

Cindy
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Thanks, Palmtrees and Cindy -- it helped just to get it off my chest.
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Real time, I think you should do your best to keep up the relationship with your brother but also realize that he will likely side with his wife when push comes to shove. It makes me sad when families break apart because of a inlaw....my sister married a man that has really changed her. It stinks. Good luck and hang in there. Don't forget to take care of yourself!

Cindy
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Realtime, mental illness is a bitch. Sounds as if you sister in law is not balanced. I hope she gets help and I hope you can continue to talk to your brother. Maybe he can help her in some way.

My husband's sister has problems. Hated me, my girls, my pretty French sister in law. Trouble maker. No one really dealt with her when my husband's mother was alive. No one would talk about the elephant in the room. But when my mother in law died, something happened. She is now nice and trying very, very hard to make amends. I know she is taking some medications and they seem to work. So maybe your sister in law is mentally unbalanced as well. Have you discussed this with your brother? She may just need some medical care and things could be much better.
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I'm lucky. My brother is a sweetie. We cooperate on all the things having to do with our mother's care (in an assisted living facility). Both of us live long distances from our mother and each other, but we communicate with each other by email and text. Both of us call our mother often and visit her several times a year. But ... except for a single annual family reunion, we visit at separate times, and all communications between my brother and me are "secrets." He keeps a special phone and PO box for our communications (and probably other people's) that his wife doesn't know about. She goes into a rage if she finds out he has talked/texted/emailed to me (maybe to others, too---I don't know). Her own kids have, understandably, skedaddled to the opposite side of the country from their parents. Obviously there are mental health issues involved. I think she thinks that when my mother is gone, she will be able to separate him completely from me and my part of the family. And maybe she will --- I'm afraid the cost of conflict is just too high for my brother. He's a very gentle man. I swear, I've always tried to treat her with respect. I guess this is off topic --- but does anyone have any suggestions? I want a relationship with my brother and his children. The idea of drifting completely apart after our mother is gone fills me with sadness.
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jaks258 pretty common occurence here! Yes I get really annoyed when my sister calls and asks to speak to mum? NEVER once does she ask about me how am I doing? Lucky my brother rings almost every night and first thing "how are you coping" they both live abroad. Looking at these posts has made it even more clear to me now that my mum moves with me my house my rules or she goes into a NH i hate the town she lives in and need to think about my own future I am currently living in her house and she can no longer be left alone here a brother down the road who although does the odd repair dosnt spend TIME with her so she really only has me to look after her. My family are coming home next week to discuss mums future as we just got the diagnosis 2wks ago she has dementia and diabetes. One good thing about mum moving with me to a place where i want to be is that I have more control over who comes to visit! I am only taking mum with me until I get her name down for a NH which could take awhile so at least I know its not longterm. I understand why you moved out me id no choice here i had a bad accident and had to live with mum but have been here 4yrs now and enough is enough like you no friends,or social life ive realised lately that this could be the start of my decline give up more of my life to look after mum OR mum moves with me temporarily and then goes to a NH near me where I can be her daughter again and visit her everyday bring her shopping and out for dinner which is what my sister has done for years shes never been part of her CARE when my sis comes to visit(she also lives abroad) she says im here to relax!!!!!!!!! yep makes your blood BOIL!
Im looking forward to having more control so when mum and I move into my house when sis visits I will not be there and she will see for the first time just how hard this is! cant wait!
Hugs to you its so hard when youre on your own but one day we will have peace just hang on to that! 10yrs is a long time to have your life on hold please try and get doing more things for yourself because when this is over its all about you and your life this is what keeps me going that one day I will have peace and wake to look after ME and noone else!
Like your mum my brother and sister are the golden ones they can do no wrong sometimes ive been driven mad thinking she MUST know they dont spend time with her she MUST realise that I am here caring for her? I think deep down they manipulate us because we have a heart and they play on that!
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My brother calls mom a few times a year, her birthday, mother's day, Xmas, thanksgiving... He is her hero, my life has been on hold for over ten years, no job, no relationships, she gets upset if i go to the store. I moved out of her house and back into mine, just couldn't take it 24/7. When my only sibling calls, he just speaks to mom, think that she is manipulating the whole thing. Would like him to take more interest in her, she is 88, blind, essentially deaf and in great health.
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Hi
I can totally relate as I have 2 older brothers who live with my parents. I can count on my older bro and not my younger one. Anytime my parents need help in any way my second bro act ignorant and care two hoots. I use to fight a lot with him as my dad sacrificed a lot of money to educate him . But today the only thing he does is stay at home and behave like a tenant and only pay for the house installment shared by my other older bro. When my mother had health issues ie Alzheimer's it was me who did everything for her and till today it's only me and my dad who really takes care of her needs. I can understand your pain. It's bad enough we are going thru a lot of pain, mental torture taking care of of sick parents but to not have any kind of support from siblings is even worse. It's hard I know but the only advise I can give you is pray to GOD for strength if all else fails. I stopped expecting anything from my siblings for a while now and to be honest it works better the moment you stop expecting. First step , slowly learn to accept you can't change your siblings behavior . Secondly do what you can in your own means and don't push it too much and be hard on yourself. I learnt all this in a very hard and painful way when my health took a bad turn last year. I learnt I need to live for my own family as I have 2 kids and a husband who needs me as well. We need to be there for them as well. We can't torture ourselves and think we can change them . Just slowly try to let go and stay away from them to keep your sanity else it's going to destroy your health and mind.
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kazaa, just remember, you are the one doing all the work as caregiver. They can give you all the suggestions they want but when they all go home, you are the one who will be taking care of all of the details.
When my dad got sick I emailed them all constantly. I wanted them to know what all was involved in taking care of their issues. There are so many details involved in taking care of an elderly parent. Siblings just don't realize all of this.
I've learned that if I know in my heart that I have done the best I can, then I will be happy with myself. Whether it is finding her the best assisted living facility that I can based upon her needs, or taking care of her in my home. That is what I will take to my grave. Whatever my siblings have to say about it all is all based upon their own guilt at not doing their part.
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Roxanne, I have four siblings. Two have been out of the picture for two years. One is an alcoholic and has issues of his own. The last one visits about once every two months. I get sick of the " I'm busy " excuse, it's the lamest excuse. My mom moved next to me after my father died three years ago because she knew my other siblings were too self absorbed.
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I understand how you feel. My siblings are not very invested in helping with Mom's care. My sister takes Mom once a week for the afternoon/evening, but my brother does pretty much nothing unless my sister goes out of town. It's so upsetting to Mom that he doesn't want anything to do with her. He used to call her several times a day, but lately isn't calling much at all. My sister finally told him that Mom's upset, so he called and made excuses about "how busy" he is. I finally have changed my expectations and have come to terms with the fact that things will never change.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to complain! I think the people on this site are compassionate, wonderful, and understanding. You're at the right place.
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These siblings choose to not understand what we caregivers go through. Out of sight out of mind is my guess. I'm done asking for help! I've gotten every excuse in the book for lack of helping. I even told my one sibling " excuses are like A$$ holes, everyone has them and they all stink". It made me feel better. Lol
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So sad Pink. My siblings are coming next week to discuss mum I havnt eaten much in 3days so stressed as I know a row Is on the agenda.

Lucky I have ONE brother who has been there for me emotionally and calls most nights to check on how things are going.

Like you when mum passes I will change my email,phone and only keep in touch with my one brother who was always there for me.

I will forgive my sisters but couldn't have them in my life again as if this has never happened you can forgive but ill not forget.

Just hope I have the strength next week to lay down the law and let it all out then so what I have to do and move on from them, have given up trying to get them to help let alone understand!
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I have sibling issues.
I have 8 living siblings.
One hasn’t been seen in over 20 years. She is the mother of an evil niece and nephew that my mother and father raised.
One hasn’t even asked how my mom is doing since my father passed away in January 2013.
One (who was the closest to my parents) didn’t even drive by my mom’s house for 3 months after my dad passed away. Had no idea where she was.
One volunteered to take in my mom after my dad passed but failed to mention that his wife is extremely OCD and couldn’t deal with the complexities of my mom’s dementia.
Two are more concerned with whether or not they can get some of mom’s assets before she even passes away.
Two have been helpful.
I spent four years filing paperwork, taking care of medical issues for my father while he was ill, driving 11 hours (each way) to their home, once a month, and was on call all the time for one issue or another. I used to email all of them all the time to let them know what was going on. It would take weeks before I would get any response from some of them.
Now that my mom is living with us I’m not interested in updating everyone on a daily basis as to what is going on. Taking care of her is time consuming and I really don’t care what their issues are anymore.
I have DPOA and am taking care of all the medical issues that she has that were neglected for so many months by others.
I’m tired of worrying about getting help from them, because they won’t help. And, that isn’t going to change.
I don’t think that a single one of them have even picked up a book to read about dementia. Not one of them has helped in finding an assisted living facility for her when she does need to go into one. Not one of them has helped to fill out Medicaid or medical paperwork for her or my father for that matter.
For four years they all told me what I should and shouldn’t do to take care of my dad and mom’s health and financial issues. Not one of them lifted a finger to help deal with the niece that was stealing from them.
I finally told them that if they thought they could do a better job then I would buy a plane ticket for mom and send her to them. Not one volunteered (except for the brother with the controlling wife who made my mom’s life a living hell for 6 months).
I have 8 but I may as well have 2.

The happiest years of my life is when I had a falling out with my parents for about 2 years. I didn’t hear any of the drama that went on in my family and didn’t have to hear about all the things the niece was doing to my parents.
When my mom passes away, I will change my phone number and move on with my life and finally be free of it all. It simply isn’t healthy when you have a negative dynamic in your life. Not that my life is perfect. It is just easier without my siblings in it.
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Have both your Mom & Brother re- read the POA papers. TELL Mom it is your brothers lawful duty to uphold them! Let her know that you won't break the law! ( scare her) Hopefully she will realize that YOU not your brother should have POA.. good luck.
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I have some similar problems 1 brother and 1 sister, neither one give a crap about their mother. When I look at my brother I see evil, my sister moved so now she has a new excuse not to help since she's not here, and Mom & I don't know where she moved to. Mom and I are better off without them. I agree with Jinx4740, find a Church, make friends if you don't have any (I don't have any friends left, I don't have time, except for my new friends at Church). I also agree with kaythecashier, get the POA in your name. How can anyone have a POA and not be there to know the situation?
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I had been accused of financial exploitation by both sisters. They actually came up with some times when mom's money had to be spent on major items which I originally paid for with my funds, then was reimbursed by mom. All is documented with receipts and cancelled checks.

I too, at times, have felt that I am losing my mind. How can our mother raise such drastically different children?
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Thank you both for your responses..it is helpful to hear others stories....I have been wondering if it's me and if I am going crazy. My sister was so mad at me when I confronted her about not giving me my half of my dads assets ....accused me of being selfish etc. but she was the one who stole money...how do people do that? Turn it around so that you actually start to question yourself....I have decided to basically let it go and stop worrying about the money and who took what, and leave it to a higher power. My only concern now is that my elderly family members are safe and cared for.
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I empathize with you on your sibling issues - I joined this site just so I could ask for advice about my sibling. I'm in a similar situation, being the only one who's here, not 3,000 miles away like the others. I'm coming to the conclusion that I should get legal advice and counseling for myself, and I would suggest it for other caregivers with sibling issues. So often, caregivers' work and expenses are undocumented. We're criticized for not doing enough and even falsely accused of stealing, abuse, or neglect. I think that, even though we know we are caregiving out of love, our siblings who do not generous with their time and affection can only understand the situation the way *they* view the world, which is that they are the center of the universe. So they can't understand that someone else isn't doing something just to get compensation or brownie points. I would suggest documenting what you do for your mother, getting some legal or professional advice, and making sure your siblings get a copy of your caregiver agreement. If you're doing the caregiving, you should have the medical POA for your mom.
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Yes, money makes people crazy. Mine is a very ugly situation and suggested a geriatric care manager to which sibling with POA refused. But, now we have one, and a conservator and guardian, very long, crazy story!!
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Sad..but glad to know I am not alone. My dad died 3 years ago..my sister(the smart one in the family) was executor of his estate...she gave me my share of the sale of his house, but decided to keep about 7k that was due to me according to his will....she feels she worked hard on his estate and deserves something...I too worked very hard....and at any rate, no one should be paying themselves, it should be done out of love and respect. My sister never closed the estate and did not file the appropriate paperwork beyond the sale of the house...and after 3 years, the judge declared it closed...I had no idea that could happen! I kept thinking...he has a will...eventually it will get straightened out....

So no my relationship with my sister is done. It is a small amount of money...but it's not the money that bothers me...it's the fact that she stole from me...and my dad. I never would have guessed she would do that.

Recently I have been helping a family friend who is elderly. She was put in a nursing home against her wishes. After being there for 10 months, my mother asked for my help. Long story short...I got her out of the NH and back into her home with 24 hr. Care. She is very happy and I was happy to help. It was, and continues to be, a lot of work....but soooo worth it.

I just found out that my sister is listed as second to be this ladies POA....if my mother is no longer able to do it. Well, my mother is no longer able. She is 90 and having lots of troubles with her memory and just fell and broke her hip....

The kicker....my sister live pretty far away....is not an unselfish person...and my mom listed her as second to be POA because she is a CPA (the smart one...). I am a special Ed teacher....

I don't particularly want the job...but I would do it for this kind lady and because I know I would be honest. This lady has a lot of money....and I am sure my sister will somehow get a piece of that, for her troubles....it's so awful. She already got this ladies car, and got paid a lot of money for moving her from a second floor apt. To the first floor...a lot of money! I would have done it for free!

It's just so depressing. Money makes people crazy.
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We have one sibling that lives near our mother and three of us live away. There was some miscommunication at times between all of us. So, we have taken a few steps that have helped. 1) we hired a geriatric care manager for professional, objective advice who visits our mother on a monthly basis, provides feedback and is available to our local brother for support 2) while we still use email to keep each other up to date, I started setting up regular SKYPE conference sessions with everyone on the phone at the same time, including the GCM. Everyone listening at the same time really makes a huge difference, and having a non family member there keeps everyone in line. It takes a lot of cajoling to get the SKYPE sessions done but it is really worth it. Emails are so easily misunderstood. I strongly recommend the group phone sessions (even if you can't Skype) and include the spouses if needed. It's still not perfect, but it feels like we are all generally heading in the same direction instead of at war.
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This seems to be a problem that is all too common. My mother passed away last year and I have had nothing to do with my two sisters since. And by the way is a real relief! Her elderly years and her death destroyed any hope for a relationship. If your brother has POA he legally is in charge. I was the " loving one " too, and did most of the hands on stuff. The legality of an executor over rides that however. Keep all your emails. Hire a lawyer to interface with your siblings and to explain the legal aspects of the estate to you. Don't expect to have it explained by your siblings. It will only get harder as the time goes by so for your own sanity line up some legal help now, then you can distance yourself from that aspect. It will cost a few thousand $ but it is well worth it for your sanity. I found someone local who was familiar with the lawyer handling my mother's estate. That was helpful. At least you will know exactly where you stand and will be less of a victim.
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Thanks gladimhere but im living in Ireland and dont know what my rights are yet so much to do and too tired to do it! the only thing that happened to me recently was I went to see a Medium my grandmother(mums mum came through) she said I was to get the house as im the only one who cares!!!! I asked the medium if I could have that in writing!!!!!!!!!!! LOL
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Arizona and kaz, did you know that the home can be quick claimed to you if you have been living there and cared for mom for two years prior to entering a facility without Medicaid penalty? This is commonly called Medicaid planning and reserves the main resource a parent has. Would your folks rather the children receive the benefit from the home or see the money spent on facility costs? I know how my mom would answer.
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Jinx you are so right my family are coming soon to DISCUSS mums future Lucky I have ONE brother who is 100per cent with me my little sister and other brother are the ones who I have issues with. I am making it very clear to everyone that I have been mums main carer for the last four years with very little help or support from them and IF they even ONCE question my care of mum they will never hear from me again. I could suggest mum goes into a home right now and her house pays for it? im sure they wouldn't like that? I refuse to put my mum into NH because I want to look after her as long as is humanly possible for me my life is on hold not theirs, and the stress of caring is bad enough without siblings interfering. Im lucky in one way that my sis lives abroad and my mum is deaf and cant answer the phone SO she has only me to answer the phone to speak to mum and I have caller ID so if I don't want to speak to her then I don't have to.
Main care givers should put their foot down more and have very little contact with siblings who think they know better.
In four years no one in my family has been with mum 24/7?? how the hell would they know what its like?
I am dreading this meeting as a row is going to happen just glad my mum dosnt realise how much crap goes on behind her back! OR does she?
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Anyone with siblings is probably having problems with them. My brother shows up every so often. My 2 sisters have moved out of state and occassionally offer dumb advice, due to the fact that they haven't lived with mom and don't know the circumstances. My husband suggests we put mom on a plane and send her to them for their turn. I told him that no one would show up to get her, that is how selfish they are. In the last several years, not one call or a card on Mother's Day or her birthday. When I post something on facebook for my friends benefit, cause they have been here to help me, they would understand.

When we go to the doctor's or something happens to mom, I post it on the family section of facebook and that is as far as I will go.
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You have my sympathy, Arizona. My sisters and I take turns caring for our parents. None of us lives locally, so we have to be away from our own homes and families and travel quite a distance to do this for our folks. We make it a practice to write an email to all sibs once a week to update on what is going on with Mom & Dad. If there is something more urgent, an email is sent right away.

Since the sisters know how hard the caregiver is working, we pretty much don't criticize or advise, unless asked. Our brothers are different. They are just full of...advice. Of course, they NEVER come to see the parents, they just stay home, 2,000 miles away and tell us what we OUGHT to be doing, feeding them, etc. When they respond to me with their "big ideas" I just tell them that their sisters will put that idea on the agenda for our next staff meeting (NOT!!!)

As for the brother who has the financial POA, if he gives you ANY trouble, tell him that Mom will be on the next plane, train, taxi, etc., to come live with him and his wife. You wanna make the rules bro? Then you do the caregiving.

As for Mom's stories being less than accurate, that is typical of dementia. We have a problem with Mom telling home health care people that she is being abused and mistreated by her daughters. I was known in the past for blowing up when I heard those lies! Then one nurse told me that they can tell Mom is well cared for, clean, well-fed, obviously getting her meds, etc. They don't see bruises and there is no evidence of abuse. She said yelling at her in front of the HHC people just makes US look bad. So now when she starts complaining, I just calmly tell her that obviously, if she is being mistreated or not receiving adequate care at home, we should find a professional care facility where she will receive 24/7 medical care for the rest of her life at her expense. If she would like me to, I can try to have her moved there by the end of the week. That generally shuts her up for a few weeks.

Is your mother mentally capable of making her own decisions? If not, you could apply to the court to get a general power of attorney, that will give YOU legal control over medical, legal and financial decisions. I HIGHLY recommend you find a local lawyer who practices elder care law. Some family law attorneys will do this. In the state where my parents are, they have to be evaluated by their own doc and by a psychologist to assess their mental state and ability to make decisions on their own behalf. If you can get that done, I doubt a judge would object to giving you a general POA especially since you are local.

Good luck. Caring for Mom is hard enough without back-seat drivers who are too far away to have a CLUE what's going on. And I don't buy for a minute that it's because they feel guilty. If they feel so darn guilty, then they can offer to help.
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You can see that you are not alone and this sib behavior is more common than uncommon...sad but true. Everyone wants to quarterback. You received excellent advice here. Another point, next time they make a suggestion, reply "wonderful idea sis, when can you come and do that for mom, she's waiting right here and all excited about hearing more about your plan?"...then let it hang and await her stammered response. When she makes excuses, tell her you're doing your best and if she has better ideas, you know mom will love hearing about them from her IN PERSON.

Doubt it will stop, but you'll feel better about saying it.

All you can do is set boundaries, easier said than done. But I'd certainly write ea sib and get my feelings out on the table and tell them the most constructive help needed is their physical presence for a few days while you take a break or money to hire in home help a few days a week.
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