My 85 yr old father has been admitted to rehab every two years since 2015.

The first was after a stroke and the others for falls. He has resided with me after the fall prior to this current one. Almost two years to be exact.

Although He is well aware of his limitations and medical devices are in place to assist as well as family.

Falls still occur because he is stubborn and or wanting not to be a burden.

My question is how do you ask your sibling, who resides nine hours away to assist you in caring for our father?

What I would like to happen is for my sibling to take on some of the responsibility of caring for our dad in their home.

I am torn ,because a year ago their spouse passed.

Prior to that many years were spent being the spouse caregiver. As well as how traveling would affect our father.

My sibling would get to spend whatever time my dad has left caring for him.

My sibling hasn't seen our father in almost six years mainly due to what I mentioned prior.

In addition to my sibling, other family is close by such as adult grandchildren and adult great grandchildren.

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I would not ask my sibling to take our dad for the rest of his life. It is not an honor or reward to be the caregiver, as you well know.

I would be honest and tell him/her that it is just more then you can handle and you want their help in convincing dad to go into a facility.

That is the only help I would ask for.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Isthisrealyreal

If you feel you can no longer take care of your father alone, maybe you can hire care to come in for so many hours a day or x number of days per week, so that you can catch a break.  If you don't want to do that, you could call you sister and tell her that you can no longer take care of dad on your own and ask for her to come visit for two, to visit her ailing father whom she hasn't seen in six years and secondly, to assist you in choosing the best LTC facility to place him.

With her experience of taking care of her husband until his death, she has experience with all of this and may have some suggestions for dads care.  She will certainly understand your burnout.
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Reply to Jamesj

it might be unreasonable to expect your sib to come and help with the physical care of your dad.

I suggest you make a list of all the things you are doing for your Dad. Then go through the list and decide which items your sibling might be able to do long distance. Call sib answer ask him/her for help, read the list and ask which tasks he/she is willing to do. And be ready with specifics about what you expect and need.
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Reply to Frances73

I think some of you are missing the point here, the sibling has not seen Dad because they were caring for their own spouse in that time. And that spouse died only a year ago. Do u really think they want to jump in and take care of the father? OP is asking that the sibling take care of Dad for the rest of his life. Also, maybe they live nine hours away for a reason.

After caring for my Mom for 2 years in my home, then an AL, then LTC, I said at the age of 68 I was not physically caring for anyone else unless it was my spouse.

Like said, OP can ask but don't be surprised when the answer is No. I think if things are getting to much, then place Dad. It isn't fair that one child has to take on all the care. But, its rare that a family all pitch in.
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Reply to JoAnn29
Isthisrealyreal Jun 16, 2021
I totally agree. The statement that "my sibling would get to spend whatever time dad has left caring for him", makes it sound like she is bestowing an honor on the sibling and we all know what a crock that is, especially after years of caring for their spouse.
I would just call my brother and tell him I wanted to discuss dads care. No one could understand better how hard it is to do what you are doing. Together perhaps you can come up with a care plan to ease your burden. I would not expect him to take on the care. Your dad doesn’t need another worn out caregiver. But brother may have a thing or two he can share that he did or wished he had done and I would think it could bring all three of you a degree of comfort to discuss life in general.
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Reply to 97yroldmom

Your sibling lost their spouse only a year ago after caring for that spouse for many years. Surely you don't expect her to take on a similar situation after what she has gone through with her deceased spouse. If caring for your father is becoming difficult for you, placement is your solution. Not grandchildren or great grandchildren.
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Reply to Labs4me

"...What I would like to happen is for my sibling to take on some of the responsibility of caring for our dad in their home..." What you would like and what your sibling would like are two different things. What are your expectations? Who is going to chauffeur your dad 9 hours each way? How frequently? Have you considered that your father could feel like a ping pong ball, bouncing between two homes?

I think it's time you have a candid discussion with your sibling about your father's longterm care needs. What is your sibling willing to do? You may not like the answer if it's anything short of agreeing to give you respite from being his full-time caregiver.

His needs are only going to increase. Better to figure out a plan now before you burnout. What can your father afford? Is there a senior living community nearby where he can live?
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to NYDaughterInLaw
NeedHelpWithMom Jun 15, 2021
A candid discussion is a great suggestion and would be productive. This would ease the OP’s mind because she would then know exactly where her sibling stands on the matter. No more speculation and hopefully no more unrealistic expectations.
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You mention caring for your mother as well. That she is in a facility.
Is it possible for dad to be placed in the same facility?
If caring for him is getting to be more than you can do yourself there are options.
Placing him in a facility. Hiring caregivers. Ideally dad's assets would be used to pay for caregivers. If that is not possible having your siblings split the cost would be fair.
Is dad a Veteran? If so the VA may have programs that can help.
Is dad eligible for Hospice? If so you would have help several times a week and can request a Volunteer to sit with him while you get things done.

You can ask siblings to help out. Those that live a distance can come and stay and you take off for a few days. Or if it is not to confusing bring dad to them for a visit.
You can ASK for help but you can not FORCE someone to help.
As you spend dads assets for caregivers it might dawn on siblings that if there is the possibility of an inheritance in order to preserve that they need to pitch in.
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Reply to Grandma1954

This is a typical family dynamic. You choose to take care and sib chooses to stay away. You cannot make him do anything. You are starting to discover that things are getting worse and you are starting to sink.
I assume you spoke to him already. Do you need funds to pay a caregiver? That may not go over too well. While you still have some time, start thinking smart and research facilities and means for financial support before all of your time is sucked out of you.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to MACinCT
NeedHelpWithMom Jun 15, 2021
Really good point about the OP sinking. She is grabbing onto her sibling which won’t help. She needs to grab onto a ‘real’ lifesaver such as a facility.
While I agree is should be a shared responsibility even concerning how to move forward it usually isn’t.
I think you should most certainly speak to your sibling and ask what they can offer for respite care to give you breaks. Also reach out the the other family and ask if any of them can commit to once a month visits to allow you a few hours here and there. You may not get any answers that fit your ideal - but I do believe you have a right to ask them - not only if they care about him but also if they care about you.
I think from there you will have some answers - then will be able to look into other things such as adult day cares - in home aides or even if you decided to find him an assisted living locally.
Your sibling may offer to share in the care more or not but at least you will have the answers to then figure out a better way for all of you. Best of luck. 🌷
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Reply to Momheal1

Just ask. Be straight up.
"Did you want to take in Dad to look after?"

As sibling lives 9 hours away, has not offered to be a hands-on carer & travel is very hard for your Father anyway - I think you can already guess the answer... but you never know until you ask. Maybe sibling thought you wanted to do it all? Or wanted to help but just couldn't before & now can? Or maybe had no intention or ability to help then, now or ever.

Best to know where you stand.

Or is your question less about how to ask, but how to make your sibling step up?

This is very common I am afraid & a valid thought. But doesn't seem to ever work.
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Reply to Beatty

Get these thoughts out of your head immediately. They aren’t helpful to you.

You know how tough it is to be a caregiver. I am sure that you are aware that your sibling isn’t going to volunteer to help. You don’t have a right to expect help from them. Yes, it stinks doing it alone. I did it alone too. Let it go.

Hire a caregiver with your parent’s money or look into placement for them.

I know that my answer is short and simple but nothing more needs to be said.

Best wishes to you and your family.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

I think that you must understand already that if your sibling wished to/were willing to take on care of your father then that sibling would already have offered to do so. Given that the sibling hasn't seen the father for six years it should be crystal clear that there is not a whole lot of love lost here. Your sibling will not be taking on any of this care. That you have chosen to is your choice; honestly we cannot make choices for other people.
I think that it is time to recognize that you are close to your limitations. At 79 I can guarantee you that your father is not falling because he is stubborn, but because his balance is poor, and he is more infirm. Would you want him to call you for every single move he makes? Would that not increase your burdens exponentially? The truth is that this is not going to change nor get better as well.
Placement may be the only answer. I am not saying it is a good answer, because you are well out of range now of any "fix its" that will make everything "good". The end of life, the stages of it, are not happy times. You have done your best; do consider now how much more time you can sacrifice of your own life going forward. Your Dad has HAD his own life. This is your one and only.
I wish you luck in making decisions going forward. If you think you could benefit from a bit of counseling to comb through your choices then do consider a Licensed Social Worker specially trained in life transition work. A few hours can often be of great value in acceptance and planning.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to AlvaDeer

"My sibling would get to spend whatever time my dad has left caring for him."

You sound like this is a privilege. I think your sibling is well aware what is involved in caring for someone. I think they need to be able to get their life together before taking on caring for someone else who could live another 10 years. I don't think grandchildren should be expected to care for a grandparent either when a child/children are available.

Ask your sibling to come and care for Dad while you go on vacation, no problem.

Try Adult Daycare using Dad's money. I had my Mom in 3 days a week. They supplied transportation, breakfast and lunch. Even bathed her for me.

If he has money, maybe he would enjoy living in an Assisted Living. He would have socialization and activities and not be a "burden".

Hire someone, with Dads money, for a few hours a week or day so you can get away.

I really understand where ur coming from. But at this point it looks like your it. And many of the members are in the same boat ur.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to JoAnn29

I don't think you can force anyone to do anything. My sister should have stepped up for my dad but won't do anything more than a respite visit of a few days. Now he is in a facility and if I'm going away, I ask for her to visit or call...but normally she doesn't even call (talking to him on the phone is problematic between his hearing and dementia so I get it).

Maybe if you just put it as a respite for a limited number of days you'll have some luck. At least she'll be able to see what he's like and later if you talk, she'll know what caring for him on a longer basis would be like. However, she's done her duty with her spouse so she may be very intentionally not offering. Anyway, you can't force it but you can tell her that if she can't help, then you need to place him somewhere else because you need a break.

Good luck.
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Reply to marydys

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