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Back story, my husband and I were high school sweethearts, married for 30 plus years now. My husband is youngest of 3 but his older brother passed in 2019. Shortly after his brother died, his Mother (74) was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer and at the time was told it would take her quickly. By then Covid was in full swing and we only had 2 options. Place her in care facility and not be able visit her, or take on all of her care ourselves. Long story short, “OURSELVES” became “MYSELF” real fast. Because of COVID we had to limit her risk and my Husband was still working so I had no choice. In March of 2020, I took a leave of absence from my job, move out of my home, and stopped seeing my grandchildren to move in with and care for my MIL. (Side note my SIL who worked from home, lived alone, and was only 5 houses from her mom, decided this wasn’t her problem). By July 2020 Covid was slowing down and my MIL needed a second surgery to try to remove as much of the cancer as they could. Afterwords she would need 6 more months of chemotherapy. I couldn’t do it alone anymore, so she sold her house and moved her in to our home. I thought having my husband around would make things easier and it did for a little while. But both him and my MIL were uncomfortable with him helping her with things like dressing, bathing & Doctors appointments, so once again her care was left to me... fast forward to Feb 2021. She did it, she beat the odds and is now in remission. She isn’t the same as before this happened but she no longer needs the constant care, in fact now that I’m back to work, I believe she would benefit from being in a senior community where there would be someone around to check in on her. I believe I’ve done my part, the crisis is over and now it’s time to pass the torch back to her and her children. Only now they like it the way things are... and by “THEY” I mean all three of them. MY MIL is happy living with us, she has become comfortable with me being there to take care of her, (my issue is, why try to do things like cook or clean if you have someone else do it for you). My husband likes having his mom living with us, (she never asks anything of him so he doesn’t see what’s wrong with letting her stay). And his sister gets the best of both world (her mom is being care for and she gets to go on with life like nothing ever happened). I’m at that point where the only way things are going to change (and I need them to change) is if I stand my ground and force them to ... But how do I force my Husband & SIL to step up and do their part without making my MIL feel I’m rejecting her?

It isn't really up to you to decide what others will do.
It is only up to you to decide what YOU will do.
You will never force anyone ELSE to care for someone. I would think that would be clear by now. People decide what "doing their part" consists of. I myself would never take on in home care of an elder. I know my limitations clearly enough to know that is no option for me. Apparently you SIL does as well. And your husband who works was happy enough to keep his job so he can get away from it all while YOU give your job up and become a full time caregiver. So everyone here is quite happy now. Your MIL, your hubby and your SIL are very happy indeed. Why would they change?
You will have now, if there is to be change, to explain that you are unwilling to continue as you have been, that you had utterly no idea how your sacrifice would be taken advantage of, and that you cannot continue on as things are. Will that be hurtful for them to hear? Sure it will. They can rage and rant and cry and do whatever they have to; it will be a shock for them all. But you are a human being with your own rights to your own life choices, just as they are.

We tell people who we are and what we are willing to do for them by what we DO do for them. They accept us at our word. They EXPECT it of us and will accept the sacrifice with very little thanks. You have told people what you are willing to do. Now they accept you will do it.
The way to change all this is to tell all that you are no longer willing to do this, and that MIL must go into what care is affordable to her, or accept support of Medicaid for placement. If they say no, tell them you will work out a way to move now into a small studio and resume working. Give them a three month timeline, tell them there will be no reminders. See a Lawyer and get ready to leave.
As I said, you cannot force others. You are in charge of your own life unless you choose to throw your life, like so much meat to the crocs. Trust me. They will gobble it right down.
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cxmoody Mar 19, 2021
This reply should be made into a huge poster.

Man, how it applies to so much of our lives.

Bravo.
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By talking to her. "Mom, I'm happy that you are in remission. I'd like to talk to you about a lovely senior community that's not far from here. I'm not getting any younger and with me going back to work, I would like for you to consider the peace of mind that comes with living in a senior community where you'll have the services you should have and can socialize with people your own age. I'd like to schedule a tour for you and me. What do you think about that?"
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ChrisDeann Mar 19, 2021
You get it, I care about my MIL, but can’t be her best friend.. she need to have friends her own age, doing things she likes to do. Thank you
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Maybe start with talking with your husband. He is your Husband, and YOU are his Wife! The health of your relationship now takes precedence over your MIL's situation, now that she is in remission and can care adequately for herself with appropriate assistance. Tell him how you feel; ask him for his support. You are right. If you don't bring your feelings/thoughts to the attention of your husband and your inlaws, they will take the easy, nonconfrontational route and avoid the situation. It is human nature; sometimes you just gotta be the squeaky wheel to get any action from others. Ask you husband to be a united front with you, and then approach your in-laws, and then your MIL. It won't be easy, and her feelings may be hurt, but if you do it as kindly and lovingly as possible, she will adjust. Good luck with this. My thoughts are with you.
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ChrisDeann Mar 19, 2021
Thank you, my husbands does try.. but feel he finds himself between a rock and a hard place. He wants to support me but worries about his mother.. I like your suggestion of being a united front.. I’ll give it a shot! Thanks again!
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I would have all 3 meet with MIL and explain that you are going back to work and you feel MIL would now benefit living at an assisted living place or Senior Home.
You then suggest in front of everyone the only alternative you see is for MIL to move in with her daughter.

I would also have a couple places picked out for MIL to go look at.

Yoy might also line up a Vacation fir yourself only and let husband and daughter take cane of their mom for a week by themselves.

If you can't go on a vacation then at the meeting, you should let them know that you have stepped in and now that MIL is on to recovery, you feel it is now the daughter's turn to let mom live with her.

If none of the above works, stop doing everything!

Let husband and MIL's daughter do everything.

Daughter can come over to give her baths, change her clothes, take her to Dr's appointments, ect.

Mare sure you start staying later at work, past dinner time and eat a sandwich on the way home, letting husband know he'll have to fix himself and his mom dinner.

You deffiently have done your part.

It is time for someone else to take over.

Be strong and Do It For You.

Prayers.
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There was a super-mega thread of one woman's struggle as her kind nature was pushed to the limits by her MIL's situation. She loved her MIL but her entire life was being eroded by her care needs, the wants, whims, calls & falls. MIL's actual children were so very comfortable with the arrangement. "Family should help family" they said (as long as it wasn't them doing the helping).

They never stopped assuming, pushing & trying for that lady to be all the solutions, until she STOPPED being all the solutions. Then they were forced to find alternatives.

That story saved my sanity & showed me how to stand up for myself & start setting better boundaries. And how it could be done in a loving, honest & kind way. (Thank you Dorker 🤗).

The best bit was the daughter-in-law & MIL relationship stayed good til the very end.
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ChrisDeann Mar 30, 2021
Thank you, I’m sorry you had to go though what you did, but glad to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
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I just want to give you respect for all you did. You went above and beyond. You got her through the crisis even at considerable cost to yourself, and it is turning out to your relationship with your husband and your SIL. Your husband needs to understand that this has in fact caused damage to your relationship and will continue to if it continues. There's that little nagging part of your brain that has lost a certain amount of respect for him because he bailed and allowed you to shoulder this responsibility by yourself. And then it is continued because he is blind to the fact that he is STILL doing it. You have shown him that you have a great amount of love for him BECAUSE you were willing to care for HIS MOM at your expense. He needs to understand that you did it primarily for HIM. I would leave SIL out of the equation. She doesn't live in your house and you are not bound to her by love or law. She really doesn't get a vote unless she wants to take on the responsibility of HER MOTHER 100%. I think that perhaps you should schedule a long weekend-or even a week- away with just your husband where you can talk freely outside of the responsibility of caring for mom. He needs to let his sister know that she is in charge of mom while you are gone and would she like to come stay with mom at your house or her house--those are her only 2 options. Then have some reconnecting time as husband and wife, and make those tough decisions. Good luck and God bless you!
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ChrisDeann Mar 30, 2021
WOW, I knew something was off between my husband but didn’t know what, you put that thought into words.. and gave me the words in need to help explain it better to him... thank you
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I expressed to my hubby that I found winter's unsafe where we lived. Since I cooked and cleaned for him even though he retired before me. I have the bad back. Once I retired, I took a 6 week vacation to stay and help the grandkids, while I started to look at homes in the vicinity. Those plans included moving my mom from one MC to another. Once I returned, I spoke to hubby that within 6 months I would be moving back 700 miles south. He followed and loves yhe social life here including grandkid diversions.

Several options here: I recommend you seriously think about finding a place for mom and take her to visit once you narrow things down. If hubby and sibs do not budge, then think about a few week vacation, even if it is across town since you work. Your other choice is to stop cooking and cleaning up in a form of protest. Or insist that you both see a therapist.
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ChrisDeann Mar 19, 2021
Funny you should suggest running away, I was actually thinking about finding myself a seasonal campsite for the summer...😏
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I'm so sorry that your husband isn't seeing this for what it is. I would suggest starting to go to counseling, with or without him. Tell him you are done caring for his mom and that it may mean you need to separate. It may get him off the dime. It may not and, of course, you don't WANT to do that. But this isn't fair to you at all. She's not even YOUR mom. It's great if you wanted to do it but if you don't, you shouldn't have to.
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Ideally you should be able to go to her directly and tell her that you just can't continue and she will agree to let you help her find another home - is there a reason you feel a need to exclude her from this process?
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ChrisDeann Mar 19, 2021
Thank you for your question, I guess I forgot to mention that I have talked to her and taken her to visit two communities very close to our home. But because she feels she should continue living with us and her children are content with the current status quo, my words go in one ear and out the other... sadly if anyone is being excluded from the decision process it is me.
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I admire people who give up their lives to care for their in-laws. To me, if the person is not my spouse, my parent, or immediately related to me by blood, caring for the person is not my responsibility.
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