I'm at my wits end with his behaviour now.
I could probably write a book with some of the things he's done last few years and how downright selfish he's been. Its got the point now where I dread speaking to him on the phone, dread visiting him because every encounter he manages to wind me up.
He's 84 now and lives alone. 30-40 mins drive from me. Health wise his legs are not great but for his age he's pretty good.
I visit him whenever I can and phone him often. Over the years, I've sorted walk in shower, stair lift, scooter for him. I work full time, my wife has health problems, we've got a teenager with aspergers (see my other posts!) and a 5 year old. Like a lot of people I've got a lot going on and a lot of worries!
BUT, as far as Dad is concerned he is number one priority for me. He's even said he expects this.
I've tried to explain to him the other issues I have to deal with. BUT, its as if he's saying "ah that's not good but what about me". He is manipulative and tries to blackmail me ALL the time.
He completely ignores his grandchildren. To him they are just something that is a distraction taking my attention away from him. (He even says I shouldn't have had last child at my age!).
My wife has now washed her hands of him. I can't blame her shes spot on - his behaviour has been terrible at times. When he's visited us at xmas he's been rude to her, rude to everyone else, and generally completely selfish.
One big bugbear is his attempts to manipulate. He'll phone me and ask me if I'm visiting at the weekend. Generally I will say probably. Then he'll say he's got no food in the house, so I'll have to come to do his shopping. Any doubt and I'll get well I need someone to help me and can't you spare any time for me?
I do on call at work and I've told him time and time again that if I get called then that might mean I have to change my plans. In one ear and out the other. His attitude is "well work will have to understand I needed you to help me out". Same with kids/wife- woe betide they've got something on that affects my ability to visit him. In the past when I said I cant visit x day because daugher has a party he'll say "well she'll have other parties to go to if she misses this one". (He ignores my kids- they just take away my focus from him so I think he doesnt like this)
He will manipulate the situation to get what he wants. It's like a game where Im forced to justify everything. He seems to have no qualms as long as he gets what he wants. Every single time I speak to him I end up annoyed that he's tried it on once again.
The food thing is a joke. Hes got a chest freezer that is 5% full. Goes mad if I buy more than about £15-£20 worth of food to put in there. I'm constantly telling him I'll get home delivery from tesco sorted so there are no emergencies when I'm not available but he refuses. Of course, having a freezer full of food or the ability for me to get it order takes away his biggest bargaining chip.
Like I said, I've tried to explain to him but he is just not interested.
Its really sad because he was such a great Dad. But honestly, it can't go on like this. Any suggestions?