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I am young and have a family of my own, my father lives with us. Myself, husband, and two daughters. Recently we decided to add to our family and planned a pregnancy. My father is paralyzed from the neck down and I have been caring for him alone four years now with no help from my siblings. However, he has MS so he has been immobile for about 15 years now. We have all taken care of him as children into adulthood. My pregnancy went horrible. My water broke at 18 weeks. I ended up losing my son but was able to carry to 25 weeks with a ruptured amniotic sac. The entire time, father was horrible to me. I was ordered to be on bed rest and no longer lift him or change him. We hired an aide, and he complained about how i cook, although i was not cooking at this time. We make him drink green smoothies every morning, one day he refused and personally requested that I go to the store and buy him sausage and grits regardless of me leaking amniotic fluid every time I stood up, bring the food home and cook him breakfast. That was the last straw. He was actually happy that my baby died because my high risk pregnancy was an inconvenience to him. I have alot of anger towards him. During the time I needed him the most, he would glare at me, talk bad about me, not talk to me at all, and caused a considerable amount of stress on top of everything that was already going on. I am two months post partum and still healing. They did a vertical incision to get him out. I am now back caring for my dad daily with the help of my husband. He never tells us thank you, no gratitude, no reassurance, emotional support, nothing. I want to have more children, but I fear I can't as long as I am taking care of my dad. My father was able to have six kids, and I can only have two. I am living his life. the horrible eating habits and refusal for medical care for decades is now very evident due to his poor health. One time I tried to get him to acknowledge that him drinking Pepsi and eating honey buns religiously may have contributed to his nueropathy in both legs from mismanaged diabetes. He also has a nuerogenic bladder and prone to UTI's from diabetes and he refuses to consider he had any parts with his health deteriorating. However, I am now left to deal with the poor choices of his consequences, even if he is in denial. I've come to realize how incredibly selfish my father is. He raised us to be financially dependent on him and to be his personal slaves. My siblings now have relief. They could no longer care for him and started to neglect him. He was very abusive, controlling, and manipulative of them and in turn they also became abusers by taking his money and not having food in the house. That is why I have my dad now. They were burnt out and rightfully so. We have been dealing with cleaning him, urine, feces, necrotic wounds, etc since were we preteens. He actually forced us to go to nursing school just so we could properly learn how to care for him. I refused. My siblings accepted him paying for their college. My sister HATES nursing and hates that he forced her. I will never do this to my children I would die quietly and alone without then knowing I suffered.

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Place your dad in a nursing home and detach with love. I urge you to seek counseling for self esteem. Family counseling would also be wise so that you and your family can put your father in the past and move forward.
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You are not a bad daughter. Your father is a bad parent. MS or not, mental health issues or not.

While your husband is your rock (and exceptionally understanding), your children are witnessing a sh*tshow of epic proportions. Regardless of the words you & hubby use to explain this to your kids, it's the actions that resonate with them.

Your children's home life revolves around your mean, self-centered father treating you like dirt. They are internalizing a twisted dynamic that cannot be adequately explained to developing minds.

For the health of YOUR family, put that hateful old crank in facility care ASAP. One to 2 more years of Love Equals Abuse and Duty Supersedes Self-Respect could warp your children irreparably.
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Thank you so much everyone for your answers! :)

CTTN55- There are six of us and four of us have put in more than half our lives caring for him. I am making this decision now because I am the last step before him going to NH. I am the only child left that is willing. My husband helps me get him out of bed every morning now. My dad doesn't give me dirty looks often when he is around. So my husband said he'd be my emotional support every morning and try and protect me from that. When I was pregnant, I was very sensitive to the dirty looks and actually cried on DH shoulders a few times. Now we have an agreement that he helps every morning, I'm grateful. He deals with the diaper changes, smells, launrdy, etc just as I do. Thank you for your condolences. It truly has been the toughest year of my life.

BarbBrooklyn- I am just now realizing how extensive his mental health issues really are. Just recently he has been put on Celexa for depression. I caught him staring at the walls or a blank tv and not telling us the show went off. I was thinking it would also help with him wanting to interact with us more, but it hasn't. He won't even speak to his grandkids. I have begged so many people to get him a behavioral health nurse, but they don't feel he will benefit from it because he can't communicate well-he only communicates when he wants to. His voice cuts in and out and I thought it was from his MS but his speech therapist told me he is doing that on purpose. Even she didn't keep him as a patient because he refused her services. She said when they don't have the will to want to get better, you can't force them. I am looking forward to the day I will be free. This will not continue, you are definitely right about that.

blannie- yes, my daughter complained one day. She said, "Mommy all grandpa ever does is boss you around. Do this! Do that!" I told her that it wasn't right. I told her that's why the rest of the house always makes sure to say please and thank you. I told her I will always tell her that I appreciate her for doing her chores and her homework. His negative energy affects the household 100% He wants to keep the front of the house pitch black and never crack a window for fresh air. Every day I tell him I'm opening the curtains for sunlight because he wasn't born a vampire lol. He absolutely hates it! I fight with him to eat his veggies more than my 5 year old. I will never care for the elderly again after this. He has scarred me for life.

Midkid58- Thank you for your condolences. I take care of him because as of now, I am compensated to do so and he has promised to buy me a house. We are actually trying to buy a house in six months. Once we have acquired some property to the family name from him, the time of me caring for him is coming to an end. He lost his house because my siblings took over his accounts and his house went into foreclosure. They ruined his credit so we are just now getting everything back in order. I am trying to be smart about all of this because when i first got him, I spent my life savings on his late bills, medical care, and relocating him. In a year I should have all financial affairs in order and will be able to properly place him in a home. I might sound mean or money hungry, but I assure you I am not. I have given this man my life. He is my dad and I do love him, just not in the way I want to love him. I've come to accept that. If the shoes were on the other foot, he would NOT take care of me in this manner. It is way different caring for an adult than it is a child and I told him that. He said he used to change my diapers. I said WOW...there is no comparison! You change a baby's diapers for about two years. It has been 15 with him! Yes, my siblings were fed up so it is now my turn. I left and had a family for a few years then returned home from out of state and saw they weren't emotionally capable anymore. They wanted to place him in NH but I said no, I will care for him. Now this time is coming to an end. My DH gets upset when my dad upsets me or hurts my feelings. One day my dad had a BM and my DH was helping me. As i was wiping his butt clean, he said "I am so lucky to have you as my wife. You are such a good daughter. You should be proud of yourself." I wouldn't have been able to come this far without him. He is really my emotional haven for support. He knows we need to go off and live our own lives. We are both looking forward to it. It's going to change our marriage for the better.

Again, thank you all for responding. It just reconfirms how I already feel. I felt guilty for feeling this way, like I was a bad daughter. I see I am not alone.
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My heart aches for your loss--and for the horrible treatment you receive at the hands of your father.

I guess this is on everyone's mind: WHY do you keep caring for this man? Why? You have given him all you can and then some. He sounds purely mean and self centered.

I had an uncle who was like this. Treated his wife (my angelic aunt) and his 4 kids like they were dirt under his feet. I was terrified of him, until I realized that what he was, was a BULLY, a big fat bully. He was never actually mean to me, but the terror of "cousin sleepovers" that we'd have, I'd lay in my sleeping bag and scootch under my cousin's bed so when he came in to kill us (which in my child's mind, seemed very plausible).

He worked in education his whole career. My aunt predeceased him--the kids felt that his toxic behavior caused her to develop cancer--who knows? Anyway--when HE died, there were 20 people at the service. 20. 8 or so were people who HAD to be there. It was the shortest and most depressing funeral I've ever been to. NOT ONE SOUL mourned his passing. His kids hated him fervently. Not one ounce of kindness in this man, and he too, hastened his own death by poor choices.

You father sounds the same. Why NOT move him to a NH? WHY do you put yourself and family in this kind of daily stressful nightmare? NO amount of "payback" for his "raising you" is worth this, and I'd say he OWES you big time.

How does your DH handle this? My hubby would have kicked this man to the curb years ago. He is toxic to you and your kids. You are young!!

It's very telling that the last sentence you wrote says "When he goes (into the NH) I will be saying goodbye".

He could live for years and years. You want your kids to grow up around that? Do you want them to think that this is "normal" and healthy??

You do plan to move him sometime----personally, I think that time has come and gone. And if the NH doesn't treat him with kid gloves, then so what? Of COURSE he isn't going to get A+++ care anywhere, 'cause he's trained YOU so well.

My poor cousins--growing up with this toxic jerk--they are all in their 50's and 60's and NO they are NOT "OK". Or anywhere near to it.

Think of your kids, if you won't think of yourself.
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Why is his life and happiness more important than your own life and happiness and the happiness of your husband and children? You have three members of your immediate family (your husband and your children) who depend on you. Why are they forced to live in this environment with an ungrateful, demeaning father? Do you think it's good for your children to hear your father belittle you and treat you like a piece of property to be ordered around? What is that doing to their own psyches? What lessons are they learning about how it's acceptable to treat other people?

I would suggest you do a LOT of reading on here about narcissistic parents. You've been groomed by a narcissistic father to operate in a place of FOG (fear, obligation, and guilt). You've totally put your own needs and the needs of the rest of your family below his needs and in my opinion, that's wrong. Your first obligation is to yourself. Then your children and husband. And THEN comes the obligation to your father. Right now you've got that reversed. He has the highest place of consideration in your household. He has no right to put you in this position. The rest of your siblings have figured that out - now it's your turn.

Your dad has lived his life and made his choices. Now it's your turn to live your life in happiness and good health. Please, please, please place your father in care outside of your family - you and your immediate family (particularly your existing and future children) deserve that respect and compassion. Your father deserves compassion and care in placement. He doesn't deserve to take over your family's life.
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Check, my heart so goes out to you.

Your dad clearly has mental problems. Whether these are lifelong or the result of his MS is unknowable by us. Is his mental health addressed by the medical professional he sees?

I imagine he is Medicaid Eligible? Does he have a social worker who can advocate for him? Are there funds ( his) that can be used to hire a care manager? Just trying to think of ways to address this issue.

Because this situation cannot continue. The stress of caring for him is affecting your physical and emotional health and that of your family.
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Wow. Do you think you will ever be able to put him in a facility? How come you ended up with him to have to make that decision? How many siblings do you have, and have they all put in four years?

You lift and turn and do all the caretaking for this bedbound man?

My condolences on the loss of your baby. That is a tough, tough loss. And my condolences on the loss of your mother.
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Also, let me add that when I do finally place him in a NH, I will not be visiting regularly. I have done that and I always see the lack of care, so then I go and care for him at the facility. Bringing food daily, checking for sores, etc. It becomes another full time job. I will have to detach all the way. When he goes, I will be saying good bye.
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golden23, yes I can see why they would recommend that. My dad has been in a facility two different times and he refuses to speak up for himself in that environment for some reason. He won't get turned every two hours and he develops bed sores. He is over 6 feet tall and heavy to turn/bathe/dress, so he is given to the new girls since he is harder to care for. He actually gets worse in a facility and this is something social workers have also told me. That nursing homes aren't able to provide as much one on one care. Also, the nutrition he gets at home is better in comparison. There are many variables why it would be his best interest to be cared for at home, but they are not necessarily MY best interests. The day is going to come when I will place him in a NH, but it would be end of life for him, He will die in a nursing home. I ask him if he wants to continue living, he always says yes. I believe I have a good year to two years left in me caring for him. Whether he passes or not, I will still have resentment. Death doesn't relieve you from everything. I'm mad at him for not taking care of himself, he would't be so bad off if he would've ate healthier and did PT thirty years ago. What is even more frustrating is he refusal to look at his actions. I don't know why, but that would really mean alot to me if he said, "I'm sorry I didn't take care of my health." He would never even imagine to say such a reasonable, logical statement to me. Old age doesn't equate to severe medical issues. He places blame on his age, he is 70. He has always been very stubborn, and I'm positive all the help and support was there, he just didn't take it. My mom left him when he lost his ability to walk. I'm sure there was more going on psychologically between the two of them and it wasn't just an insensitive and selfish act on her part. I don't think she could take it anymore. She just died a few months ago. I think her leaving added years to her life or she would've died being miserable taking care of him. Now, I am stuck with him. The choice is either I care for him, or he passes away within months in a nursing home. I am 30 and I would honestly not be able to do this if I was in my 50's and older like some of you on here. I'm not going to continue to let him rob me of my life forever. This is something my husband and I have already discussed multiple times. We have a five year plan and my father is not in it.
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97yearoldmom, I continue for some of the same reasons that all of us do. Empathy, compassion, obligation, love, just to name a few.
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ceecii - ((((((hugs))))) my view is that this situation is very unhealthy for you, and your family, and that you need to make another arrangement for your dad. It is recommended by some psychologists that adult children of an abuser do not do hands on caregiving. I think that would be very wise for you.
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Why do you continue?
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