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I firmly believe that as adults, the hierarchy of our obligation is first to our minor children and spouses. Providing hands on care for our parents is a CHOICE not an obligation.

Call your local Area Aging on Aging and arrange for a needs assessment and help with figuring out her how to pay for her care. Remember, HER resources are what pay for HER care.
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paulfoel123 Jul 16, 2019
My Dads idea is his resources (i.e. money) are there to stay in the bank and never be used.

My resources especially time are there for his benefit...
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It is hard, even when you aren’t a “hands on” caregiver & live 5 min. from the aging parent! When my mom was getting in very bad shape, but refused to spend any of her money paying someone to help her, I was the one expected to do most everything. I didn’t work, lived 5 min. away. However I was homeschooling three kids. Trust me, if you take that seriously, you can’t just be at someone’s beck & call! Mom never ever fell at a convenient time, sometimes multiple times a day. And a Dr. appointment an hour away in a large hospital takes half a day! And then all the “little things” she needed help with!

My kids were suffering, hot dinners weren’t ready when my hubs came home from work & Mom still needed more help.

My husband NEVER complained, but one day I realized I was essentially being home for my mom INSTEAD of my husband & kids. I backed off a lot, only doing Dr. appointments (numerous) & shopping for her once a week. She couldn’t believe that “I wouldn’t come help her” and “how could I do her like that”.
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Sassifrass71 Jul 18, 2019
Ummm you only have one mom and your hubby didn’t know how to help cook meals and I don’t think he would of died with not having a hot meal hun sometimes But remember she did give you life and love you !! make it sound like she was a burnden for you to even help her
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Barbs right here.....

I've been through this. Got a daughter 6 years old, teenager with Aspergers and wife who has long term illness.

Dad pushed it and pushed it to get what he wanted. In the end, he spouted out "yes but everyone needs to understand I need you're help and you've got to put me first".

At this point I realised he did not give a monkeys about me, my kids or my marriage. Even when I tried to explain to him his answer was "You need to tell them how its going to be. Have a word with that wife of yours and tell her hard luck this is how it is". (I didn't do that - I now know why hes been divorced twice and I've been married 23 years).

I would have ended up divorced if I'd carried on to be honest. Wife can't stand him these days (and shes got a very good point) but its all his own doing I'm afraid.
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pamzimmrrt Jul 16, 2019
Paul my FIL is the same way about me that your dad is about your wife. If I answer the phone while hubs is out, and he doesn't call back,, I didn't give him the message. If something he wants done ( like potty seat put on at the river) its my fault. I headed him off last time, about the seat.. Told him I told hubs.. Then I told him I am not my husbands boss.. he got in my face and yelled "The hell your not"! So I feel for your wife..
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I think the more help you give, the more help is expected.  You must set clear boundaries for yourself so that you can meet the needs of your family and keep your sanity!  Remember that our elderly parents don't have much to do but sit and think (stew?!) about things - they forget the days of spouses, kids, work, home upkeep...  My husband has been wonderful at helping me with this; I will say things like, "I am going (for a run, cleaning the house, running errands, doing homework with the kids,etc.) right now so I will not be able to respond to your texts; I will touch base with you when I'm done - in about an hour or so."  Then I set my phone on do not disturb and give myself that period of time to myself or to accomplish a task.  Do not feel badly about carving out space for your and the family's needs.  I've had to plainly say "I have a lot of responsibilities and am doing the very best I can."

Oh, PS - in terms of money I have the opposite situation - I have to manage finances yet money is being spent like crazy.  When I ask about, say, a big purchase, I'm met with animosity for "being bossy with MY money."  I can come home to carpenters giving estimates on home remodeling - I'm not kidding.  I can't tell you how stressful it is to sit down to pay the monthly bills and fear what you're going to find...I get a big stomach ache every time.
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paulfoel123 Jul 16, 2019
Liz - definitely. If my Dad could swing it he'd sit in his chair and let people feed him if he could get away with it. Hes is good shape for 84 but you'd swear he was bedbound the way he goes on.

Yep I've had the "responsibilities" talk MANY times. In one ear and out the other. Hes even said "well you need to put me first". What do I say to that? lol.

Yes Im the opposite. Hes got about £35-£40K in the bank. Hes NEVER going to spend it EVER. But he won't even spend a few pounds to make like easier for himself.

He moaned about not being able to carry battery for his mobility scooter upstairs (it is heavy) so I said I'd get electrician in to fit outside plug. He almost had a heart attack at the thought - anyone would have thought I'd suggested getting a team of naked strippers to paint the inside of his house with gold leaf paint.
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Unless both spouses have 'caregiver' hearts and minds, there is no real balance. If patient is not really kind to the spouse, it will create problems no matter how much the spouse tries to do.

If finances allow, use the patient's money to pay for things they need - in home care, household chores, etc. When you jump in with both feet, it will be much harder to give the tasks you do to someone else because patient has already seen you do them, assumes you had/have time to do them, and (most) are saving their money for 'old age' and want to hang on to it.

If you cannot make a decision to put mom in a facility, you probably already know how the marriage is going to go if you continue in caregiver role. It's a decision you may have to make. If your marriage is strong and won't allow for time caretaking, the other decision is facility. Hard spot to be in, but your decision to make. If you happen to be in a bad marriage anyway, this could be your out.
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vicky64 Jul 18, 2019
Having already gone through this, I have read all the replies. Excellent.  I love what you said 2cents about them wanting to
save for their old age!!        My husbands grandmother used to tell us what the 'little old ladies' were talking about.  The gossip!  He and I laughed b/c we were in our late 20's and Grandma was the same age or older than the  "Old Ladies".  She just did not feel old, which I guess is good, to a point!!  40 years later,  I know how easy it is to deny we are aging.  some days.  Other days not so hard!!  You all have a great summer!
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Amen^^^
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Dolly: Thank you. My late mother left us no choice. I had many relatives and friends who said "How on earth can you do that?" Well, the answer was that my mother gave me no choice. At the end of my caregiving, I was under so much stress that I actually swallowed a LIVE hearing aide battery (number 13 size) as I was getting ready to take my night-time medicines. That was scary at first, but then when I called the battery company toll free #, they assured me that I would be fine. However, this company had a plan to periodically check on me - 10 days out, 30 days out, 3 months out, 6 months out and one year out. I was okay! Phew! I will pray for resolution to you with your mother. That sounds like my mother. So hard. My mother gave me what I like to call "The you wait and see story." My response to her was "I won't be putting MY daughter through this."
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I was fortunate. My DH had been widowed after being a Caregiver for wife #1 and having to assist her parents.

My DH insisted that I tend to my father's needs. I was blessed.
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Only through respite will both work. Also the power of prayer will get you through. It did me. I had to leave my husband and move away - where my mother demanded to live alone in another state 7 states away from my own - until it was evident that she could no longer LIVE ALONE!
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paulfoel123 Jul 19, 2019
Llama - so you're mother demanded she live away and you left your husband to accomodate her?

Out of interest would you have left your husband anyway or did you just do this for your mother? How did husband take this?

I'm glad the power of prayer worked for you. Unfortunately, not all of us are that was inclined.
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Im pretty lucky with my Dad by way of his understanding that we have our life. My husband is a very kind, selfless and understanding man. and reading some of these stories on this forum. I know a lot of you aren't as fortunate.
Dad is still able to drive, though not at night. He is very intent on his religion, but if it helps him and keeps him happy, I'm happy. He's just grateful that we come to visit and doesn't demand our attention constantly, but we are more than happy to help. My sister lives too far away to help. and my brother does sweet F A.
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paulfoel123 Jul 19, 2019
Glad to see you've got an understanding Dad and a good husband.

My wife is good. Shes put up with loads with my Dad. Not sure if I'd be so calm if it was her mother to be honest. She has now lost patience though and I can't blame her.

Dad does not give a monkeys about me or my family. Its all about him. Hes awful if I'm honest. If I let him, I'd be divorced by now....

Some days I wish I lived in another country so he couldn't call me and demand I do his shopping. Alas, I live 30-40 mins drive away - close enough that he can expect to click his fingers, far enough that its a chunk of the day to visit.
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