So my mom and I take turns caring for my grandma. It's a hard job 24/7. My sister is always so flippant about it comparing it to caring for her 14 month old and 3 year old stating that she understands sleepless nights as sometimes Emmett cries for a few hours a night and it's just like grandma. Now I try to make her understand it's not that easy. Grandma might not 'cry' all night long but she certainly doesn't sleep either and unlike a child, she isn't distractable (although I do try) and she isn't going to get better. Our nights are not just part nights. When it's a bad night we get no sleep because unlike a baby who sleeps and you don't have to worry about them getting out of bed, even when grandma is sleeping we are watching and waiting making sure she doesn't wake up and try to get out of the chair. We know it's just a matter of time before she wakes up having to go to the bathroom and will get up without her walker and try to go and we don't want her falling again. It's this constant fear we are living in and it's never ending. This isn't a phase in life that she will grow out of in a few weeks or months. This will only get worse but my sister seems to think it will just get better.
She frustrates me by just assuming that life is just like it was years ago. A lot has changed and she was just here watching it go on and still she discusses us coming to Maine for a visit (10 hours with grandma in the car? I think not for 10000s of reasons), she talks about how she doesn't understand why we can't just take her out where we want to go when we wish to go shopping, and she just seems to think this is just like a child where you pick them up and go where you need to go. It's tough and frustrating.
Has anyone been able to successfully explain caregiving to a family member who just doesn't seem to get it? It's not like caring for a child as a child gets better, and smarter and learns and remembers. My grandma has dementia and I'm blessed when she calls me by name and remembers to bring her walker with her somewhere and goes in the right direction without being reminded. I'll feel even more blessed if she ever remembers to ask for help when getting up rather than having me make a mad dash across the room or causing me to throw whatever is on my lap aside just to be there when she stands up since she always forgets to ask and probably always will.
I know I shouldn't let it bother me but my sister and I have always been so close and I want her to at least recognize what we are doing and why instead of just act like it's not a big deal and doesn't deserve understanding. I'm even giving up my trips to Maine to see the kids since I don't want to leave my mom without her second shift person because I have heard so many horror stories on here about how caring for someone by yourself 24/7 will kill you or at least make you really sick. She's already a person with remission from cancer only 2 months ago so I don't want her even more sick.
Any words of wisdom on how to help family members understand?