How do I involve siblings that ignore my parents?

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My parents still live independently but need care with meals, appts, etc. I have recently put them on a program where some meals are made for them so that relieves some of the stress. I still do a fair bit of cooking, baking, etc. I have a couple of siblings that live nearby (within 30-40) minutes drive. I live 20 minutes drive from my parents. Another sibling lives out of town. I very rarely hear from my siblings - they just assume that since I'm living nearby I can do the work. To complicate matters, they also know that my Dad gives me a bit of money to help cover costs. I was even told my one to just ask my Dad for more money if I think it isn't enough. Honestly, I don't want the money (Dad insists) - I just want support because it is getting too hard emotionally to be on call for them 24/7. I also have my own family and thankfully a hubby that is very supportive.

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Here is a bit of an update - I only post this with the hope that this will help others in the future going through the same scenario. As stated above, my out of town sibling and spouse came to stay with my parents for over a week. When they were first there we were asked if they could come over to talk about the care for our parents. We told them that we would love to have them come at the end of their stay with my parents. We figured that then the honeymoon period will be over and they will see both our parents for what it truly is. This is exactly what happened because they wanted to know what the rest of the family could do to support us after they left back for home again. We stated that what we need is appreciation for what we do and also that all family members have to visit my parents on a consistent basis to at least show some emotional support and care for us as well. The meeting went well with them and we hope that this will bring some changes - only time will tell. They leave for home again tomorrow and then we are back to caring for our parents again.
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Thanks for your response cdnreader....a family meeting will not accomplish anything. At the moment my out of town sibling is staying with my parents and I know it will be an eyeopener. I am staying out of the way for the time she is with them and getting a bit of a break, also mentally. I am dealing with anger which I need to put aside and carry on. If one of my parents end up in the hospital, I will ask friends to help me if my out of town sibling isn't able to come. For the rest, I know I have to let things be until they see for themselves how they are neglecting their responsibility. I can't fix it but can change my response and that is what I am working on.
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Dear Caring2,

You are an amazing person. Its a lot for one person to have their own family and also take on their elderly parents increasing needs. I'm the oldest of 4. Since I was a child I seemed to always be the caregiver in the family. I didn't know how to ask for help nor accept help from my siblings. And I had to make a mental adjustment but I didn't. The one sibling tried to help, but I was never happy with the amount of time she put in. I always felt all the responsibility was on me. After my dad's stroke, the resentment and anger just built and built over how much I was doing compared to my siblings. I would suggest calling a family meeting including mom and dad. And laying out all the facts and see how much each person is willing to take on. And the answer could be nothing. Then you know what you are dealing with and where else to look for help like Medicaid. Hard truth is sometimes our siblings just aren't willing to take on too much. And as hard as it is, as the main caregiver we have to accept this and explore other options.
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A few new developments. I am noticing that my Dad is not taking my mom's chronic pain seriously and that is difficult. As it turns out, my Dad has a large influence on my sibling that shows little interest in even visiting my parents one on one. So, while I am grieving the loss of my mother's independence, my one sibling (living within driving distance) shows no empathy. Even a visit that was planned was cancelled hours before because they 'were busy' and leaving for holidays. By they did have the nerve to tell my Mom that there is no reason why she can't travel to their place to see them. My Mom is in chronic pain and it is very difficult for her to sit for any length of time so she had to make the decision to limit her travel.

I took it upon myself to read up on chronic pain and the fact that people don't understand this condition. I copied an article and gave it to my dad to read. He will probably ignore it but there is always hope. I don't get treated very well by him (only when others are around will he be ok). I could scream but suffer in silence.
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One of my siblings ignores my parents totally - unacceptable and no excuse for that. I don't care if they would be difficult to visit with (they are not). The same kids who ignore their elderly parents are first in line to take their money - sad!
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Are you looking for them to visit or to take on caring for your parents? I see your point about visiting. But taking on caring for someone is an entirely different situation. I am an only child so whatever had to get done fell to me. I knew right away to put up hard and fast boundaries with my father or he would take over my life. Even doing simple things for him were so stressful trying to schedule into my already hectic life. Then there were the 'emergencies" that never really turned out to be emergencies. I fell for that a few times then learned.

My father complained to my daughter that I never 'visited'. She pointed out to him that I was there alot and he said "but she is always doing stuff". So my helping him did not count as visiting. Even if I did just go to visit I have found it is very hard to have a discussion with him. He has no interests in other people, just himself. His favorite topic of conversation is what he does in the bathroom....which is one of my boundaries...no potty talk. So he has nothing to say. I try and get him to talk about his childhood and he doesn't really want to. Visiting with him is uncomfortable and a bit painful. Maybe that is how the siblings feel. Or I could be totally off point.
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lkdrymom - I do see your point but this doesn't apply to my siblings. If they can find time to go on holidays six weeks of the year, surely they can visit once a month at the very least.
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"Some siblings are more willing to be around their aging parents than others. Others are too self absorbed or thoughtless. It's just the way some people are. Fortunately for your parents, you are not that way."

I don't think this makes people self absorbed. Not everyone is cut out for caregiving. Not everyone has the extra time it takes to devote to caregiving. It is unfair to condemn anyone because they are not willing to do what you are/can do.

OP if it gets to be too much for you tell your parents. If they need that much help they really aren't living independently ...you are just enabling the illusion. It is their responsibility to take care of themselves or find the means to do so. And if they want your siblings involved in helping them THEY need to ask, not you.
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"One thing I will say is that I would not count on your parents calling up their other children and asking for help. Quite the contrary! I would count on your parents pretending like everything is fine, life is good, and they get along just fine. You have to see it from their perspective, which likely is that they would never want to alarm their children or be a burden on their children."

That is my mother when she talks to my three brothers -- showtiming or showboating to the max! One time I reminded her that one of my brothers hadn't come to visit her (and my father, as he was still living) for FIVE years (and no, he wasn't in the Sahara; he was in NJ!). "Oh, don't you talk about HIM!" she ranted to me. "We have our own relationship, and it's none of your business!" Well, it IS my business when he is lazy like that and will share equally in the inheritance. That was when my relationship turned somewhat sour with my mother (and also for other reasons). The upside is that she does NOT call me as much. I have told my (other two) brothers that when it gets too much for me, that I am going to walk away (even though I am the only local child and only daughter).

My mother made it loud and clear that she will not expect anything from this brother (and even much from the other brothers, really, except that when she can no longer handle money, it will be THEIR problem, since the other two are her successor trustees and the accounts are all locked up in her trust). Of course, she will never accept that she can't handle money anymore when that time comes. Not my problem. They will have to be a LOT more involved than they are now. And I am NOT going to be providing free home health aide or housecleaning services for my mother!

(For those who wonder, I never had a good relationship with my mother; she is borderline narcissistic and was extremely controlling and punitive when I was growing up.)
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Some siblings are more willing to be around their aging parents than others. Others are too self absorbed or thoughtless. It's just the way some people are. Fortunately for your parents, you are not that way.

One thing I will say is that I would not count on your parents calling up their other children and asking for help. Quite the contrary! I would count on your parents pretending like everything is fine, life is good, and they get along just fine. You have to see it from their perspective, which likely is that they would never want to alarm their children or be a burden on their children.

Now that you have realized that you do too much and need to step back from some things, I think you have a good reason to have a conversation with your parents about what services you think they need and to manage their expectations of you. Carefully craft your words to explain your limitations, changes you are making, and changes they can make that will give you peace of mind.

And your parents do need to help themselves. You cannot do everything for them. They still have control over their lives. Parents can get quite upset the first time one tries to talk to them about caregiving and planning for their caregiving needs. You may need to bring it up several times before you make any progress. But do not drop the subject just because your siblings stick their heads in the sand.
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