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Parents should be there for their children. How do you deal with this day in and out when they expect care because "your my daughter"? It seems the natural relationship of the parent supporting the child is reversed eventually to the point where you become disillusioned. Any insights?

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Ah, yes... only my IL's don't have daughters - so they tell me "because you are the daughter-in-law". The list is endless and it is just going to grow as they age. set boundaries or you are going to spend the next several years or decades exhausted and angry and it will never be enough (read the stories out here). Right now, with your life and your immediate family - decide what you will do and can do without anger and resentment. That is what you do. Your parents have resources in the community that they have not explored. Why use senior transport when we have a daughter? Well, if you can't do everything - they are going to have to look around.

My own mom - told me she expected to move in with me so i could take care of her. I said NO and got the whole "but you are my daughter" manipulative speech. I told her i loved her and would help her research living, transport, meal options - but that i just couldn't be a caregiver with a full time job and young child. (plus my mom would drive me insane within a day). She didn't want to hear it and after several years i still get the guilt trip "Linda moved home to take care of her mom - wasn't she in your grade in high school?"

Bottom line - they are not going to be happy with your setting boundaries. You will be happy and have health and a life.
Alternative - they are still never happy and you are exhausted, sick, resentful, and it will never ever end.

Stay strong. Read the stories out here. Seek advice. We wish you the best.
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Ah, the adult/child dynamics when it comes to dealing with elderly parents. If a grown child lives at home helping their parent, eventually the dynamic goes back to the parent being the parent, and the child being the child. We are the "kid", and what do we know ??

Even though I didn't live in the same house as my parents, I felt they were still under the impression that I was still in my 20's or 30's and could still do everything..... hello, I was a senior citizen myself with my own age decline issues. Even waving my Medicare card and AARP membership didn't seem to phase them :P

This was before I knew it was ok to set boundaries, to learn to say "no" to my parents.
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Dear Chill,

It is hard caring for an aging parent. I know we all have to do what we feel is right. Always know there are options. Yes, we are the daughters but we have to remember we have choices.

For me, I was the oldest of my sibling group. My parents were immigrants and struggled their whole lives for their children. I was put into a helper role with my siblings from an early age. I think that carried over to when my parents were aging and facing health crisis.

I have a lot of anger and resentment. I always felt overly burden and responsible where as my siblings were "free." My father passed away last year and I am still guilt ridden about not doing enough. It felt like no matter what I did, I could not get any validation or acknowledgment or even make my father happy. I am trying to come to terms with my decisions. For me, I don't regret helping my parents, but I wished I had found a better balance.

No matter what, just remember to do what you feel comfortable with. And always know there are resources in the community.

Take care.
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"You're my daughter" is being said to manipulate you. But, your parents cannot walk all over you unless you lie down. You are an adult, as are your parents, and caring for them must work for everyone involved, and not just them. Set healthy boundaries now before it's too late.
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Oh, please.... stop with the "they took care of you as a child". My 200+ lb dad gave me a black eye, concussion, numerous bruises as dementia took over. I never did that to him. There gets to be a point when professionals are needed.

Also - as a child I never expected my mom to be my slave and cater to every damn whim - as my mom and my IL's do.

My parents raised me to be independent, to make decisions for myself, to not mooch off them but seek out my own solutions. Why is this unreasonable to expect of them as they are capable? My mom is capable of driving herself, doing her laundry, etc but DOES NOT WANT TO. Sorry - i'm not going to step in.

I will; however, see that as she ages, she is taken care of with me advocating for her care and visiting her. I just won't be doing the hands on that she wants.
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I feel there is a middle ground between giving over your life to take care of your parents and just ignoring them. I am struggling to get that balance. A major problem that I see described here is that parents don't just seek help. They seek help on THEIR TERMS. My mother wanted everything to be as it always had...the two story Victorian house immaculate, the garden lovely, groceries from five stores and so on. And she wanted no one in her house but me. So while working full-time, I stupidity tried to please while also taking care of my own house. One day I found myself 80 miles from home, driving to escape. It shook me. It took me a while, but I started setting limits. I should have done so from the beginning, but no one prepares you for this role.
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Boy, I can relate to this! Over the past year, my mother's health declined and I was constantly running from work to deal with doctors, ER visits, rehabs and moving her from independent living to assisted living. I returned home late last night to be called to her assisted living because the air conditioning was not working. This has really caused damage to my business. My two brothers refuse to do anything but criticize what I do. Of the three of us, I have the most demanding professional life. My mother told me during one of her ER visits that it was the "girl's responsibility. When she was young, people her age just sat there to be waited on by the girls. Boys don't know how to do it, and they are too busy." I was appalled, and told her that times have changed. It does not sink in. It is a generational thing. You can try to set all the boundaries you want, but it is not going to change their way of thinking. I realize how hurtful it is. You feel taken for granted and end up burned out.
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OnlyChildCarer: "A social worker visited to suggest people who could help with shopping, laundry, bathing, etc. My mother's response was, 'My daughter will do it.'"

How often do you go to her apartment, and how long do you stay there? I am sorry that your mother is such a selfish narcissist. What does your therapist say?

CarlaCB: "but it's only the authoritarian parent-controls-child aspect that remains after the caring, supportive aspect of the relationship is gone. A lot of parents seem to find that to be the easiest way to deal with the fact of being dependent on their children. If they act like they're still in control, maybe you'll be fooled into thinking they are, and they can also feel as though they are, instead of feeling like helpless, dependent old people. "

I think there's a lot of truth in the above. My mother likes to order me around, and expects to be obeyed. Yet her abilities are so compromised -- she must think she's fooling everyone!

One time at the coumadin clinic my mother prounouced for anyone to hear, "I don't know what people do who don't have DAUGHTERS!"

Well, she has a resentful daughter (me). I don't want to do much of anything for her. I wish she lived near one of my Golden Boy brothers. At least I've put it out there for the Golden Boys to know that if at some point it gets to be too much, that I am walking away from it all. And I will.
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"Because you're my daughter"... sounds manipulative... (But that's my experience and without a doubt my mother "groomed" me to be her "caretaker" at my great expense, personally, emotionally and physically). What do you think he/she means? Is this new behavior for this parent or have they always had a selfish, or self-centered personality? How old is this parent and how is their health?
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Wow, so many responses I can absolutely relate to perfectly! I was the youngest and the only daughter out of 4. My oldest brother passed away in my late 20's and that was the beginning of my mother's mental decline. I am now approaching 50 and my mother chose me as her caregiver and put me in charge of everything. My other two brothers stand on the sidelines and criticize and accuse me of having ulterior motives. Oh please. My life revolves around her now that she is over the halfway mark in dementia land. My career was expendable to her yet she always makes excuses for my brothers why they do absolutely nothing (and never did) but hey, they have families, one is a produce stacker at a grocery store, (same job from being a teenager) I know, how ambitious. The other went on permanent disability and they live in the area. I was a kitchen and bath designer but I was the one who ended up having to sacrifice my career to take care of Mom. The only reason this is possible is because my husband makes a good living. She could not afford long term assisted living and had I said "No" to her, she would have been broke by now and looking at going into a State Facility. I cannot imagine. She worked as an RN in assisted living facilities her whole life until I got her to retire in her early 70's! That is when she started showing little signs of forgetfulness and I knew what was coming down the pike. She is now 81, lives with husband and I (per her request) in her own seperate cottage next to us, (that is how we stay married 😉) and I realize I have become a slave to Mom's every need and whim. She still has issues with me telling her what to do and what not to do, she doesn't seem to comprehend I am an adult and actually do know what I am talking about. She has always given men more credit as far as knowledge, even though she will tell me how smart I am and obviously she trusted me with her full care over my brothers for a reason. I think the dementia makes her forget how old I am, forget I gave up my freedom and career for her so she would not end up broke in a State Facility, it is very difficult to swallow at times that it all just seems expected that the daughters are the chosen ones and the brothers get the excuses why they can just go on with their lives without any responsibility to the parent. Yes, I agreed to do this, did I have any idea what it would be like in reality? No. Nothing can prepare you for this except reading others experiences to get some concept of what you are in for. Wish I had known about this website prior to making this commitment but it is water under the bridge at this point. Deep down, in the end, I will feel like I did the right thing for her as opposed to what my brothers would have done with her but it is a high price to pay, mentally, financially and physically. Our bodies are aging too now and we have our own health issues but, we cannot falter, we are still expected to do our daughterly duties. I do wonder how many more years I will essentially be a prisoner just making sure Mom is safe and all her needs are being taken care of all the while making sure she has money enough to live on for however long that might be.
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