Help, I cannot take it anymore.

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HELP!! CAN NOT TAKE IT ANY MORE! I LIVE WITH MY DAD AND MOM WHO HAVE MILD DEMENTIA. MY DAUGHTER HELPS WITH DR. APPOINTMENTS SHOPPING AND COOKING, HOUSE WORK. I HAVE POA. THEY FIGHT WITH ME EVERYDAY THEY DONT WONT TO PAY ANYBODY TO HELP THEM. THEY THINK I SHOULD DO IT ALL WORK FULL TIME AND ALL THE THINGS THEY WANT TO BE DONE. I FEEL LIKE GIVING UP AND LET MY DAD GO AHEAD AND DRIVE THEM TO THE STORE AND EVERYWHERE ELSE THEY WANT TO GO. HE SHOULD NOT BE DRIVING HE GETS LOST AND IS SICK AND WEAK WITH OTHER HEALTH PROBLEMS. I HAVE TOLD HIM HE COULD KILL SOMEONE OR MY MOM, HE JUST DOESNT THINK THIS WILL HAPPEN. I JUST WANT TO GIVE IT ALL TO THEM AND BE DONE WITH IT. I KNOW THIS IS BAD TO SAY, BUT I DONT KNOW WHAT ELSE TO DO OR TURN. I HAVE NO ONE ELSE TO HELP THEM. I JUST WANT TO RUN AWAY. I AM SIXTY YEARS OLD AND FEEL 90 BECAUSE OF THE STRESS. PLEASE ADVISE ME!

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Springbird, I so sympathize. The early and moderate stages can be the hardest. Our parents are still controlling everything. Everything has to be their way -- no facilities, no help in the house. They can tell us we're young and we should be able to do it all. We can try, but it gets physically and mentally exhausting. It is especially hard when we live with them, because we can't just go back to our own place. The best we can do is escape to our room.

You can do what I did when I came to stay with my parents. Originally I tried to keep everything clean. Then I decided that the bathrooms and kitchens only had to be cleaned once a week. I make easy and nutritious meals. I don't let parental needs interfere with my work. Work is first. I am second. Parents are third. I take at least two hours a day for myself to get out and go to the gym and talk to people. When we first start laying down boundaries, it can be hard. They'll keep pushing on them, trying to make them give. After a while they learn that things still get done, so maybe they'll relax a bit.

Later stages of dementia get easier when it comes to personality. At least it has been that way for me. My mother has been a lot nicer and a lot less combative. Sometimes I wish she was the same mean person, since I still have a lot of anger in me. It doesn't seem right to be mad at someone who is being nice, so I carry it inside. I've been at it 7.5 years now and see no end in sight. It isn't easy. I get the feeling you are feeling a lot of the same things. It would be easy if it were a few months or a year. When we think about 10-15 years, it becomes more desperate. I hope you're able to get your parents into assisted living. I wish I could get my mother there, but she is adamant about dying at home. She is still legally competent, so I can't force her to go. All I can do is decide if I leave or stay.
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Have they had a "needs assessment" from their local Area Agency on Aging?

How did you come to move in with your parents? Do you have a home to return to?
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YES MT, WASHINGTON KENTUCKY I SURE HOPE SO. AND THANK YOU!
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Shirley, no one individual can care for a person with dementia alone. Caring for two? Oh my -- no wonder you are overwhelmed. In a care center there are three shifts of rested, trained personnel to keep the residents safe, comfortable, and healthy. And they have backup to call upon when they need it. For one person to duplicate this at home is just impossible.

1) You need help
2) You need respite -- time to yourself
3) You need emotional support

Tell us where you are located (US?) and you'll get responses about how to get what you need.
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