My family has always let activities revolve around my stubborn, outspoken, and often unreasonable and selfish dad. Now this intelligent, yet extremely overbearing parent is very fragile both physically and mentally. I never had that big, cathartic "F-you, Dad!" kind of moment that would have been helpful when we all were younger and stronger. I feel so badly for my dad. At least there seems to be a protective mechanism that comes along with dementia...he just goes along with things and has not complained once about his "new normal". He does complain about physical ailments, but not only to me, and kind of treats me like hired, but unpaid help!
But now I am feeling guilty for feeling stressed out, exhausted, angry, and resentful about "my" new living situation. I moved my dad from his own apartment in another state into an assisted living facility 6 minutes from my house. I have been going over almost every day for the past 2 months, but there have been about 5 that I haven't gone over. Lately I've been sticking to my work schedule and doing other activities that I'd canceled in the past so I could hang out with Dad - though he doesn't really talk to me. Now he's in the hospital and I still went to work and even went to "fancy" dinner with a friend the other night. I know we're supposed to take care of ourselves, but all I hear in my head is the voices I assign to others: "She's so selfish!" "If I were her...", etc.
Anyone else feel (know?) they're doing it all wrong and not doing enough ever??
Am I safe in thinking that you are a woman?
First off - good for you for going to the seminar! It sounds like your mom lives with you. You have good reason to be crying and exhausted.
My theory: your brother being there was a novelty for your mom. Her daughter is old news. If your brother is not there all the time, she was probably on her best behavior to impress him enough that he'll come back more often. She's showing off for her son.
Has your brother told you he thinks you're a big drama queen? If he has, try to let that roll off your back, and if you want to reply to him, stick to the facts about your daily schedule.
If he has not actually told you he thinks that, he probably does not. I was always worried that my family would think I was a big whiner too, but I was projecting. I hope you are too! But if you're not...maybe you could be a bit devious so that he comes back and does the more day-to-day tasks - flatter him! Compliment him on how well Mom did when he was there and say wouldn't it be nice if it were always like that? :)
It really is an awful situation.
But whatever you do re: your brother, don't ever feel like a big complainer and whiner. You are going above and beyond. Every day. Your brother came in for one weekend, like some hot-shot firefighter, but you're the bigger hero.
So she kept it up for a weekend, big deal. If your brother is the kind of caring and game human being he sounds, given that he actually bothered to do this stint for you, then I am 100% sure that he will realise that this caregiving business is a lot less amusing once the novelty's worn off.
One time Dad laid the backyard for almost an hour, Mom tried to call my house but her phone wasn't working for whatever reason...... thank goodness a neighbor saw Dad lying on the ground, she's ask my Mom for my phone number and used her own cellphone to call. Thus my panic of not being too far from home.
Said neighbor suggested my parents get one of those medical alert buttons for Dad to wear. Dad's answer was "that's for old people"..... [sigh].
Really wished I could have talked my parents into a retirement community a decade ago, but now at their age it would be too difficult. Been trying to get my parents to downsize within their home, but that is very slow going.
One time Dad layed in the backyard for almost an hour until a neighbor saw what had happened and she called my significant other
Well now. I always think, when there is a possible sacrifice to consider, that it has to have a POINT. And what benefit would your father have gained from your sacrificing that good dinner and good company? None. So what would have been the point? Now if a nurse calls you and says it's not going so well and your father is asking for you, of course you'd make your excuses and not stay for dessert. Otherwise… dine on! x
What would you tell another member on here who was asking the same question? I thought so...Try your own advice....At least give limited visits a try..
freqflyer I found most friends don't understand and I lost one friend due to the fact that I was always strung out and miserable which makes people not want to be around you.
I've resorted to changing my phone number and having it unpublished to avoid the screaming tantrum phone calls from my mother (in a NH) which were making me ill.
When my parents were in their mid 60's they were traveling, vacationing, enjoying life to the fullest, and never had to help their own parents.... now that I am at that age, I can't do any of those fun things because who would get their groceries, take them to the many doctor appointments, to hair cuts/salon, to the mall, etc. My life has stopped, and it's been over 5 years now since my Dad stopped driving.
I had friends who would remind me that my parents took me everywhere when I was a child..... then I remind those friends," yes my parents did that but my parents were in their 20's and 30's, not in their 60's when I was a child, big difference".
You are lucky that you were able to have your Dad go to an assisted living facility, so many elders refuse to do that. My parents are in their 90's and still living in a single family house.... there aren't any neighbors their age to chum around with.... if they were in a senior community, there would be new friends to bond with, plus such communities has transportation.
I, too, feel like I am not doing enough. And how I resent when the phone rings and Dad wants me to drive him and Mom somewhere. I am tried after work, I want to stay home.