How should I handle my father (96) who is stubborn and disrespectful to me and my daughter?

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My daughter and I are both collecting SSI disability benefits, I have a disability pension from work due to mental health issues. My mental health status is once again going downhill. I have to take a lot of medication to keep my stress level low. My daughter and I are picking up most of the household bills. He will come busting in our bedrooms without knocking. He also has his own ideas about how we should live our lives. I understand it's his house and he still wants his independence. But, me being the only caregiver is a nightmare. We have tried to get outside caregivers, but we live in a very rural location. I can admit he is not receiving the best care by me. I do try, but on days when he pushes me over the edge, I can't function as a caregiver. I've tried different options to make the living arrangement work, but no success. HIs hours are not normal. We have tried Meals on Wheels, but they did not meet up to his standards. I've also tried to get a list of meals that he would like to eat. That way I can prepare some and have them in the freezer for his late night meal. I'm trying to find a local caregiver support group I can go to in person. I'll welcome any advice.

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You and your daughter are both disabled and you are living with your father, in his home. He needs some caregiving help. You are not up to providing it. Is that about the size of it?

Could you and daughter manage financially to live on your own, perhaps in subsidized housing? Could Dad get by on his own? Are his impairments severe enough so that he'd need to be in a care center if you weren't there?

It really doesn't sound like you are in a situation good for you or your father.
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I agree with Jeanne. If you can't live peacefully with your father, you and your daughter could find another place. Your situation reminds me of my uncle who is very demanding but mean to everyone. No one can stand to be around him. His sons come by to help, but they try to leave quickly. I don't know what is going to ultimately happen with him, since he refuses to leave his home. He only wants free help from his sons.

I would tell you to put locks on your bedroom doors, but wouldn't be surprised if he just pounded and yelled about how it was his house. There is really no option for your own peace of mind except to leave. Is your father able to care for himself at his age? That is a huge concern. There has to be a better option of you being pushed to the edge.
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Most nursing homes have monthly caregiver meetings, which invite outside caregivers as well as relatives of residents. Find one near you. Accept the reality that he is a caregiver too, by taking you in. Keep a record of all you are paying for, so Medicaid will cover him if he ever needs it.
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Here is what I will tell you. I was pushed to the caregiving edge. I didnt think I could take it a minute longer but since my father passed I would give anything for five minutes of him being difficult. Identify what issues are really him and which ones are really YOU. We are all responsible for the energy we bring into a situation. He cannot control his any longer. That is likely not even his fault. At 96 his mind cannot be trusted or blamed for his behavior. His filters are likely gone. But he still loves you. That is all that has to matter. Dig down deep and just live where the love is and try to let the rest go. Once he is gone there will be decades without him here in which you will have time to figure out why he drove you crazy. Those days are lonely.
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Very well assessed Dianemarie. That's a beautiful answer to the Question buckeye82 asked.
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omg...keep looking for a place to move ... this is very abusive for your daughter too. i surely would do anything to get her out of that home!! good luck
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I can identify with your problem. People can elude to making walking away sound easy, but I understand it is anything but - we are the ones who step up when everyone else has stepped out.

With dementia and elder rage in some folks, what seems rational & equitable to most in a more balanced mind is not so in the other. It is makes for the sensation of feeling crazy.

Boundaries are tough when living with elderly parent/s - especially when at a bare minimum, we hope to have the simple respect devoid of narcissistic interruption. It may be more than that, of course - his own depression, fears, etc about his life and add into it - dementia if applicable.

I am in a similar situation and making plans to leave but being hired is tough at my age. Many companies ay not recognize caregiving as a valued or relevant experience. Especially when we are doing it for family and unpaid. In caregiving employer situations, we would actually have clear hours, benefits, a paycheck and boundaries. Very different animal which compounds the family obligatory and guilt additive.

In what ways are you not the best caregiver to him? Are there areas in which you are positing behaviors that are influencing how he behaves towards you? Is there anything you can change about that, if so? What would help you best? Can you and he work as a team to establish boundaries and can you improve your caregiving skills?

Best wishes.
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Excellent answer,Dianemarie. If a person has the ability to be a caregiver full time,without damaging his/her health,that is great. On the other hand,some of us just do not possess that charisma and need help ourselves. I found some college,even high school seniors who were happy to come by for 1 hour and talk to the patient, or read.Even the local school nurse from a grammar school might be helpful.You really have to take out the magnifying glass and scrutenize the neighborhood. Local paper??Community services? You have to think 'out of the box' and ask for help from above. If you ask, you will receive. Best wishes. Malachy
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At 96 yrs. your father's own mental state should be questioned. If it were me, and I say this because we have a mutual disability, take care of yourself and your daughter first, and when you cannot manage his behaviors any longer, leave. Living in a very remote and rural area sets you up for any number of stressors which will only end in disaster. People seem to think they have a license to abuse their children and get away with it. You need to survive for yourself and your daughter and let your father fend for himself. You have gone out of your way, and now it is up to him to survive on his own. Take your social security funds and move. Your own safety and mental health depend on it.
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This sounds like a question you have asked and answered for yourself. You admit you need to take better care of yourself--dad isn't "allowing" it. The fact you state your own mental health is declining--and dad is a pill (was he always this way? Or is this new?)...sounds like you know you have to distance yourself. Look into a place for you and daughter, at the same time, look into placing dad. It will be hard, but it's just going to get worse.
Self preserve---for you and your daughter's sake.
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