After mom died and dad had to move out of his place due to no money and falling and being lonely, well I stepped in. My one sibling lived close by and worked with dad and was single and had a house, but no offer to help. The other sibling lived 5 hours away and made a paper-thin offer to take dad but dad called me and asked me to help (I am 7 hours away). Me having one child still home I made the best of it. Sibling #2 said "you take dad 6 months and I'll take dad 6 months. After the cleanout and move nothing. A few trips to #2s house once a year for a week or 2 for a few years but that was it. Now 8 years in and covid and I am stuck. #2 retires soon but has a grandchild on the way. So I ask for #2 to take dad for a month so my wife and I can go on vacation. Nope, "Covid" Dad gets his shots soon, She is retired and the baby is not due till summer. Nothing, "nope there is Covid here". But number #2 can drive 5 hours to get a haircut in another state because the state they are in does not allow the same way due to covid. Then another trip to the same town 5 hours away and will be painting a grandchild's room in their child's house (grandchild wants her grandmother to do it) in another state but that is OK, I guess no covid in that state? Did I mention #2 is a nurse? So it's OK for #2 to travel and go to all these places but not for our father to spend time and see his great-grandchildren some he has never seen.
I'm just tired, our marriage is suffering, not bad but we are stressed and I am asking for help from my sibling. #1 is a write-off so we don't talk. #2 said will still work a couple of days a week after retirement so to have travel money. Funny, I can't travel because our father is a fall risk and can't be left alone for a weekend. #2 calls dad every other day and plays doting child all the while I have to deal with meds, dr appointments, dehydration, altered mental status when a UTI appeared, falls, 3 surgeries, rehab daily visits after surgeries, cooking and shopping, technology support paying for the roof overhead and no financial assistance at all. Anytime there is a funeral I have to drive him many hours to it or in one case flew across the country with him and a wheelchair through airports. At the airport #2 went and got a wheelchair so he didn't have to walk back to the car from our gate after our flight got canceled and #2 ran back to her gate to fly to vegas and left me there having another night in a hotel and meals to get a flight back the next day.
Didn't think this one through when I stepped up to the plate.
Just burned out that siblings do not care one bit to help.

Maybe your siblings are off skiing with mine 😅

Time to face facts. They can't or won't help.

Neither guilting, pleading, pressure or agro will force them.

'They should help' thinking has not changed things & is not helping you.

Time to flip the script:

Something like - I am a great caregiver. But I have limits. I will think about what help I need, research it & implement it.

Many many people (so so many) have had this sibling issue. I'm sure it makes siblings become distant... but it seems you can choose how to respond: to be bitter about them not doing as you would wish or accept their boundaries.

You may currently be the family *Resuer*. But I say your first responsibility is to rescue yourself.
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to Beatty
WantingPeace Feb 21, 2021
Boy, you hit the nail on the head. I have one sister and have pleaded, begged, yelled, had a meltdown and it will not change her participation. She comes once a week and will bathe her, change the sheets and do 1 load of laundry then hightails it outta here. I guess I should be grateful that at least she does that? Ha, but ok I guess! And that only happened at my insistence about 2 years ago, never her initiation on anything. I've been wanting to post about this for quite awhile now and will hopefully do so soon as I do need the support. I do find comfort in knowing that others understand the situation because of their own personal experiences. Like you said Beatty, so many others have this sibling issue. It's such a shame!

So to tgengine, if having a sit down with them and laying it all out (either again or for the first time as a group) feels right to you, then go for it! Just know you may not get the response you desire but who knows, you may be surprised. Even though I know my sister will never initiate any help, and I have to find a way to make peace with it, it still is challenging. Look into the other suggestions here about finding help. It's available and you deserve to have relief!
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This may be the time to give up thinking that the siblings will help at all, and put some changes into place for YOU.

Can you get a sitter for any time at all during the week?

Does Dad qualify for an in-house aide for a break?

Any possibility that Dad can move to Assisted Living?
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Reply to cxmoody
tgengine Apr 1, 2021
No, he can't and that is not in the plan. If I did that I'd have burning pitchforks coming my way. Not that any one of the pitchforks is going to help.
It took years of agony for me to realize that the conversation should not have been about my siblings at all.

The truth is that we place entirely too much importance on what others think and not nearly enough on what matters the most in our own lives.

Focus solely on making arrangements for the proper care of your loved one that doesn’t include direct care from any family members including yourself.

One step at a time, one day at a time, things will fall into place.

Once you step away you will breathe more freely and be proud of what you have accomplished in spite of any bumps in the road.

It’s normal to grieve for what could have been. You’re entitled to those feelings.

Perhaps this all seems easier said then done. I know how hard it is. Difficult challenges are resolved everyday by people all over the world.

You have taken the first step by reaching out. Stay focused, trust your instincts and move forward in your life.

If you need help, don’t hesitate to speak to an outside objective individual such as a therapist or another caregiver who has let go of the primary responsibility in caregiving. They can help lead the way.

Speaking to others will help you gain a proper perspective and receive new insight.

Best wishes to you and your family. There is peace after the mayhem.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

From your profile you have too much on your plate. Do u still care for SIL and BIL? I will assume SIL stands for wifes sister? Is BIL her brother? If so, maybe its time too get their families in on their care. Both my siblings have adult children and significant others who can very well take care of them. I don't expect them to do it for me either.

My brothers did nothing, one being 8 hours away with MIL problems and the other 30 min away. I excepted the fact that it was just me. The oldest and a girl.

I would not have gone thru what you did when it came to flying Dad. Sorry, ain't going to happen. Funeral hours away, because of Dads health, not able to come. You want to see Dad you come here. If you want him to visit, I'll meet you half way and you can have him a week or two or more.

You don't say how old Dad is? Does he now need 24/7 care? Maybe see if he could get respite in an AL or LTC facility to get you some time to yourself. It will cost u but it may be worth it. Does Dad suffer from a Dementia? If so, may want to consider LTC with Medicaid footing the bill.

Life is not fair. If you read other posts you will find your not alone when it comes to siblings and help. I found by just excepting that its just me, it made a difference. If you don't expect others to be a certain way, life is easier. I had POA and did what I thought best.
So, when it comes time when Dad needs more care than u can give, you make that decision to place him. If its questioned, u may want to say that if you had more help maybe you wouldn't have had to place him.
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Reply to JoAnn29

You really cannot count on other family members to help in care. Especially when there isn't clearcut discussions and rules (and even they will go spotty.) It is one of the most common complaints on Forum.
I hope you will consider for yourself how long you can go on now without help. Why not sit together and talk, tell them you are exhausted and burned out and didn't understand you would bump up against your limitations so fast. Honestly ask them if the are able to do more, and if not, then placement is likely the answer. So sorry. Hard realities biting.
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Reply to AlvaDeer

TG, you made your decision those years ago, and your siblings made theirs, and it is utterly pointless to blame them now. Actually, it isn't just pointless, it's unfair and unreasonable. You *knew* this would be how it would go. You even joined this forum and discussed the issues back then, before your Dad moved in. You did think this one through - and you decided to tough it out.

If you want things to change you are free to change what you do; and you can do so with your head held high. But blaming your siblings, resenting their freedom of action, bemoaning their uselessness when they do make any effort, won't help.
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Reply to Countrymouse

It is not unusual for one sibling to have to shoulder the burden of care. I did it for 15 years without help from my brothers. I love my mom and I did not mind, but it also ate up my life and financially impacted me for the rest of my life. In other words when I "retire" I'll be living in poverty. It affects your retirement considerably.

You literally have to sacrifice your entire life to be caregiver full time; either that you stick them in a nursing home. I could not bear to do that. You have to love your parent than yourself in order to become that sacrificial lamb, and mom was my entire world. Until she died. Age 90, three months. Her Alzheimer's did not kill her. Insulin-dependent diabetes, liver and kidney diseases did it, even with excellent controls on her sugars. Diabetes does its number even with great control. In the end I had a feeding tube put in my mom because I did not want her to die of dehydration. She did great with that until her kidneys and liver did her in. She died without a single mark on her skin, no bedsores, and she was only bedridden for 2-1/2 months because it was hard work keeping her moving until she forgot how to stand and could no longer focus on that.

Do I regret doing that? No. I love mom. She was my world. Her death really impacted me and, well, that's just part of life. We all die. Her ordeal of living is over with. I miss her, but I'm working and trying to get my Master's degree. You have to carry on. You just have to. I know mom would want me to, so I keep on going for her sake.

Mom died very peacefully and hospice never had to opened up that emergency pack. They came over daily to make sure she was comfortable and she was. I never had to give her any narcotics or psychotropics her entire life. She did great without them. I used exercise to control her behavior. I walked her in the park everyday for 5 years. EVERY SINGLE DAY. That really kept the "crazies" down, and for the most part "sundowning" was not a big problem. I kept her awake during the day and she slept good at night.
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Reply to cetude

Realize that every family member is different. Each can provide different types of help: finances, hands-on care, taking care of home or supplies,,, There is no law mandating that family take care of a senior. So, ask your family members what each is capable and willing to do - and lean into whatever their agreement was. Realize that life situations change and a well-meaning offer for help may be rescinded.
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Reply to Taarna

No, I never had one sibling offer. I was the only daughter: OF COURSE it was my job. Thanx to a mother, wonderful in many other ways, who fell for the myths of male superiority & traditional attitudes toward women “hook, line & sinker.“
DON’T fall for it: stand your ground. All kids should do what they can -not more - what can be managed while taking care of your own health & your other family responsibilities. It should never be the responsibility of one, especially just because that one is a daughter. Do what you think is doable AND fair; then tell your siblings to get their butts in gear to do the rest!
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Reply to annemculver

What were the dynamics of your family growing up? Was it dysfunctional? Were there different rules for different kids depending on favoritism? Did some of the classic roles for siblings get played out: Golden child, Scapegoat, Lost child, The Baby? I foolishly believed all that stuff was behind us as I took on the role of being primary caregiver for our Alzheimer mother. I believed all the heartfelt promises that "caring for mom will be really hard, but we will be there to help you." All three of my siblings, plus their husbands and older children showed up to help me move from my house into our mother's house. It was wonderful and supportive and lasted until the very first family meeting a month later after I had time to access Mom's situation and the work was to be divided up. Suddenly, the lovebombing honey moon that tricked me into taking the role in the first place was over. Instead, the first phase of the gaslighting and emotional and financial abuse started. Gaslighting was insidious as the three siblings all insisted that they were doing just as much for mom. One held the purse strings and paid the bills at the end of the month. The other was suppose to take mom to her doctor's appointments. Never happened. The third supposedly met mom's social needs and took her to lunch six to eight times a year. All three of them did not do in a year what I did for mom in a matter of a few days. I took care of mom for six years before finally giving them a month's notice (like the unpaid help I'd been reduced too) and putting her in a nursing home. At the end of it, one of the siblings wanted her daughter to live in mom's house rent free, plus all utilities paid, plus a housekeeper "just while the daughter was doing her flight attendant training." When I said no, that mom's house needs to be rented out and the money used to pay for her nursing home, I was told that "family helps family, and I'm not helping the family". WTF? It's been three years nowsince mom was put into the nursing home. The siblings have taken over her assets and use them for their own needs. I got a lawyer, but they seem to be taking their own sweet time cleaning out mom's house and getting it ready to rent, one knickknack per month while the grandkid lives there "house sitting". I don't have any more money for lawyers. My sister uses my mom's money to pay for the lawyer. They have already changed her trust twice in their favor. It's messed up. Anyway, looking back, I realize that not only did my siblings not help, but they actually enjoyed the abuse I went through doing all the work. Three years later, I am still working through the complicated emotions and CPTSD left. I wish I had gotten my head out of denial sooner. In truth, my sisters enjoyed watching the abuse of the caregiving from afar. In their reality, they were entitled to have the scapegoat sibling do all the work for them. In their minds, Mom would have wanted it that way. Ask yourself, is some of this happening to you? I wish I had woke up sooner to the true nature of my siblings. I am still horrified by it. In your case, is it possible that not only do your siblings not care one bit to help, but was her trip to Vegas made that much sweeter knowing she left you behind to suffer?
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Reply to ptreyesbunny

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