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He has his own side of the house but is constantly staying in our living room. I recently told him 50 percent of his time can be with us, 50 percent in his own living space. we offered to take him to senior center, he doesn't want to go there. he has no interests or hobbies nor any friends and never has. I am sick of his listening to all my conversations, intruding when friends come over and watching me when I do the house work. I bought him little projects to work on. He wants my husband and I to do it with him and makes no effort to try. He is used to being waited on and could do things himself but expects us to do everything for him. I am about at the end of my rope. He has done this off and on for 2 years.

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I hope that the poster, whose in-laws were thinking of moving in with their son's family, reads all of this.
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If you are in my house more than 3 days, you are no longer a guest. This means I can ignore you, fix what is convenient for food, come, go, fart, burp, not wear a bra, be in my pjs, take a vacation without you, etc. You will have chores to do. You will need to arrange your own transportation and friends.

This arrangement didn't suit my mom at all. She pitched some ugly fits to disrupt our lives. It was scary for my kids to see this old lady acting like a two year old. I couldn't go to the bathroom without mom screaming fo me because she thought I had left. It got worse & worse until we all dreaded coming into the house.

I always say that if you are lucky to live in the Walton's house with all generations doing swell beside one another, good for you. The rest of us have to figure out what else we can do with our babies and grannies here in the real world.
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i am assuming this is YOUR house you are speaking of…..you are lucky my friend to have this…we have a 100 year old colonial home with no separate space for my mother but a 10 x 12 bedroom…..she is in the living room 8am to 8pm as if i let her go to her room she will sleep the day away and be up all night long….i think he needs to be told you and your husband need your own space and he needs to adhere by YOUR rules…i think many parents will treat you like doormats either by their choice or by the tole of their illness….if you give them the chance to run the show im sure they will take it
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Then why are you and your husband suffering? If your marriage and life are really being disrupted, tell this in-law he will have to find space elsewhere regardless of whether he wants to or not. When he goes to an independent living situation, he will have to do things for himself unless meals are provided. You have done your good duty, now make your own life with your husband and friends. Best wishes!
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If he's capable of clear thinking, problem solving, etc. perhaps give him an ultimatum...IF you're willing to back it. "Dad, if you want to continue to live in our home you will have to follow our rules about staying in your own area. Otherwise, we will find somewhere else for you to live. It's your choice."
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I also deal with the peeking at me behind doors, listening to my phone calls, standing outside of the bathroom when I am trying to get some privacy. It is all crazy stuff, just dementia and paranoia about who knows what. She follows me from room to room, gets in the way while I am trying to clean, goes out to the trash to see what "treasures" I may have thrown away - it is sooo exhausting.
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I have been my Mothers caregiver going on 3 years and the first year I was here I felt like I was the "cruise director" - always trying to entertain her and get her interested in something. I grew resentful and angry at her during this time until I realized that she really has no interests anymore and nothing I can do will change that. I refuse to be her entertainment now. I take care of her needs, make sure she is safe and fed and her environment is clean. I sit and watch TV with her for maybe an hour and only if it is something that I want to watch also. I do not try and fill up the silences with chatter. I am not a big person on small talk and when I talk I wish to communicate not just listen to gossip or the endless talk of aches and pains. You are not there to entertain him - that is his problem. Good luck with everything and stick him in an assisted living if the situation is making you that miserable - you are entitled to a life also.
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Always Learning, I couldn't have said it better.

I've compared caregiving to being caught in a whirlpool, sucked in, going round and round, with no seeming way out, little perspective on how important our own needs are, and struggling just to survive let alone get ahead. I've felt that way many times and still do.

It's difficult when in that situation to see a way out though, and perspective is hard to find, but the first step is recognizing the importance of one's self and the facts that:

a. We can only do limited things for our loved ones.

b. Some things just aren't going to get done, but that's been a part of life forever. It seems more pressing for older folks because they're sliding into the ends of their lives, but it's also a time to prioritize and decide which are the most important things to address, like health, safety, nutrition, etc.

c. Caregiving causes a loss of perspective of our own needs, and the fact that if we don't address them, we can't successfully address our loved one's needs.

d. There can be a lot of manipulation and domination by needy old folks, and even though we feel sucked in, we have to take a stand even if it means someone's feelings are going to be hurt.

RoHo, this man is manipulating you and your husband, getting away with it and likely enjoying himself. You had no idea when you established this 50/50 arrangement that he would abuse it, but he has.

It will probably be hard, but put your foot down and stop this by making him stay on his side of the house. If you do have him over, say for meals, advise him afterward that your family has private plans and even though you're glad of his company for dinner, it's time for the family to be alone. Then get up and escort him back to his side of the house.

I would suggest taking him to a senior center (I don't think he needs day care) but I suspect he'll throw a fit.

Maybe the best thing you could do is put locks on your doors so he can't come over.

And make sure your family is on board and doesn't undercut you by thinking you're being too harsh. You've been too kind for long enough.

Good luck; I hope you can find the strength to do this as I know it isn't easy.
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Look at all the people who should be in that "club" and their screen names: LoveStinks, GoingBonkers, 1tired. There's a lot of pain and exhaustion being expressed here, and it shows up all over this site. Some of that is unavoidable but a lot of this suffering is from being afraid to say no, or what ohmoondance right calls "entitlement." We've all got to prioritize what's necessary for the WHOLE SETUP to work, which includes our own needs. Here you have one bored lonely person and one person craving to be left in peace. The bored lonely person doesn't get to call all the shots or just refuse to go be somewhere else; and the person needing privacy shouldn't just cave to what the bored person says he will or won't do. It's a systems dynamic kind of thing, and you have to develop a system that works for everyone.
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I had this quandary with my own mom. She had no interests, no hobbies, no favorite anything. She sits and watches TV and expects the world to wait on and entertain her. I put my foot down and said it isn't going to happen. I have a full time+ job, two teenagers, a marriage, and my own life. I have lots of hobbies & interests and it's not my fault if she never cultivated herself in life. I'm not going to put my interests aside to sit and stare at her all day long.

My mom is in a senior housing community where they have a long list of activities all day, every day. If she doesn't go, it's not my problem. Others have also mentioned day centers.

It is really unhealthy for someone to sit and vegetate in front of the TV all day long. You have to take the bull by the horns and setup some kind of arrangement for FIL to be occupied during the day time. He might not like the idea or be willing, but too bad. I wouldn't present it as an option. I also wouldn't cave if any tantrums happen. Sometimes the change in schedule or day is a little upsetting, but in time it becomes the new routine and is fine.
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Kcandrick got the idea get him to that senior center and don't wait till you POP ..been there we waited too long ..I was in tears by the time I got him in there ,he drained me completely ...the I'm going here today and your coming with me was a fight but it was the rest I much needed !
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As for the senior center, why not take him there and you "volunteer" for the first few times with the workers....he is either forced to socialize or help you with your "volunteering"....it may be that he just needs to be pushed in the right direction a bit.
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And 4 for me! LOL, we should form a club. We finally put our foot down and said that the 16 hours a day of TV watched will not be in our space. The only privacy we get is when we walk the dog in the park in the morning...so now we walk her in the evening too :) He does drive and visit a "girlfriend" twice a week but she is 92 and apparently not very entertaining either. He literally spies on my activity, house cleaning and cooking hiding behind a door way watching.
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I hear a sense of entitlement here. I would let a physician make the diagnose, not some one on this site. Loved what CAPTAIN said- Be real....if in question-get to a physician.
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It's year three for me.
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He is a perfect candidate for Assisted Living. Lots of people there his age. Seniors really do enjoy contemporaries.
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