Follow
Share

I sold my house and moved in with my parents 4 years ago. My mom has multiple health problems and takes more and more care all the time. I feel like I have to check in and out with them before I can go anywhere or do anything. I am 39 years old and feel like a teenager yet. If I take a day off work they always have a list of things for me to do. Unless I plan to be gone somewhere I can't just take a day off and stay home and relax. If I do they make me feel guilty and make plans for me. I would like to take one weekend a month and get away somewhere but I have no where to go. At this point my dad is still able to care for my mom for a couple of days while I am gone. It will get to the point eventually that I can't go away at all. How do I talk to them about needing my space and freedom a little bit without making them feel bad? I love them and want to be there for them but I was recently told by my counselor that I needed to decide how much my own life was worth to me. Any suggestions?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Sami74, the title of your post says it all for me, too. My parents are in their 90's and I am worrying myself sick over them because they still live in their own home by themselves which isn't elder proof [my home is even worse].... Dad falls on a monthly basis, half the time he can get up on his own, and some day I know I will get a call that either my Mom or Dad had tumbled down the basement stairs or the stairs coming down from the bedrooms.... or the step leading out into their garage.

I can't sleep at night, I can't leave my own home thinking the phone will ring, and forget about going away even for a weekend. I keep telling myself that it was my parent's own choice not to move to a retirement village and that they have to take responsibility for their choice. The only time I am not worrying about my parents is when I am at work, too busy to worry.

I can't shake it... at least I know what NOT to do as I get older.... sell my home and find a really nice retirement village :)
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

"They make me feel guilty." Don't let them do that anymore.

Believe me, as people get older, they become very egocentric. "It's all about me" becomes their mantra. You are an angel to do what you're doing. You will be utterly USELESS to them if you continue to let them call the shots.

You're the boss, Applesauce. Be assertive. Realize you are doing for them what 99% of children wouldn't do in a million years. Become a benevolent dictator. You deserve it. And, if you don't? You'll burn out and won't be any good to them at all. You'll get resentful, if you aren't already. You'll wonder why you've put your life on hold. When what you SHOULD be doing is giving yourself a huge pat on the back and being sooo proud of yourself you could burst.

"Yeah, dad, hold that list. I'm just going to veg out today." Let that become YOUR mantra. ;)
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Yes, I just moved Dad in with my wife and I, we get along fine, he is not ill at all but I have this overwhelming guilt I cant shake. I don't know why,I talk to my wife about it, she doesn't understand why nor do I about the guilt thing. If I leave the house it follows me. I work at home which makes it 10 times worse.I have not enjoyed one ounce of summer yet. Wife is due back at school soon and Dad and I are going on an 8 day trip I put together at a weak moment when mom died. Now I am regretting it and I haven't left yet. Even trying to get away for a weekend is difficult for me. I guess I have to buck up and do it so I know how you feel, the above answers are correct, I will use some of their advice.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I have a friend who always had a dinner meeting every Tuesday evening. Where? A restaurant and Barnes and Noble -- just her. It was her "me" time. While she loved the time with her father (he lived with her), she realized she had to have a regularly scheduled time each week that was just for her. Going to a hotel is a great idea. Checking out a cabin at a state park is also a place for wonderful R&R. Both, though, are possible only if you have the financial resources to do so. Having watched my mother care for her bed-ridden mother at home, a horrible journey for Mom with lasting health and financial consequences, I agree with the others. Get out! Get your own place and come over to help your parents. They don't need you to be there 24/7. And, the longer you're there, the harder it will be for you and them for you to leave. Blessings to you for your wonderful heart and willingness to help your parents. But this is one of those times that you MUST take care of yourself before you can help them. Take your own life back!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

When I cared for my dad in my home I would go to a B&B on a Friday and come back Sunday morning. My 18-year-old daughter lived with me so as long as she agreed to not stay at a friend's overnight I felt secure to sneak off for a day or so. It was heaven and I tried to do this about every 6 weeks or so. There came a point when I was unable to but I did it while I still could.

Do it!!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I don't know how many times, my late sister said "I have no life." If she did go out, Mother would phone her. I begged her not to baby Mother. To go visit her sons and friends. I said "Do not answer the phone 15 times a day."

Well, my sister didn't survive the stress. I think that you need to get out permanently and start earning your Soc. Sec. and health insurance.
Helpful Answer (5)
Report

Yup, I can agree with you. Im caring for to ill adults, different houses, and its not getting any easier, Im 37 with two kids,trying to look for work. You have to, have to( yes purposely said that twice) Get extra help now, the more they get used to you being there all the time they will get upset your not there in the future. Its harder to break away and the guiltier they will make you feel ( not meaning to its just that they will be counting on you for everything and used to it) or you will feel. Im living it and have also been told this on here!

Your counselor is right, see how much time you need and how much you can give your parents, work and gently let them know you can do this and that and certain times or days. Good luck
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Agree with Rocknrobin, just go to a motel with a pool and chill for a weekend. Then think about why you thought that this was a good idea to move in with your parents. Their health is not going to get better. One person cannot possibly handle the needs of two aging and ill persons.

Get them to an elder care attorney and have them make a plan for their long term care. Find yourself a therapist or counselor and work out a plan for getting your life back. Read the other posts on this site and be forewarned about what could happen.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

you might have to show some teeth a couple of times to get their attention . this isnt the same world they lived in where a job came with benefits , a lifelong guarantee and a great retirement plan .
struggling under caregiving , loss of self determination and a crippled construction industry , i told my mom once if she nagged me about a buick recall notice one more time id cram the car in a dumpster and burn it .
ocd dont cut it with me . i see now that the ocd was part of dementia but idda still burned the car .. armpit deep in broken exhaust manifold bolts on my work truck -- it was the straw that broke the camels back ..
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

You say you have nowhere to go for a weekend. Go to a hotel with a pool and spa and spend the weekend doing nothing. You need "me" time.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Sami, how old are your parents? If your father can handle your mother alone for a couple of days, do you really need to be living with them? You are only 39, so I imagine that your parents are not very old. Maybe you could find a place of your own and help them with chores. I have been living with parents now for almost 5 years, so I know it is stressful. When you move it with them, it is their house, their rules. It is like returning to being a teenager. My mother (father dead now) and I are much older than you, though, so care needs are more immediate. Would it be possible for you to move somewhere nearby so you wouldn't feel like you are under their thumb? It would give you a chance for a life of your own.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.