My siblings and I feel helpless to help our difficult to deal with father. Any suggestions? -

My siblings and I feel helpless to help our difficult to deal with father. Any suggestions?


Where to begin? mom left and divorced my dad 4-5 years ago. My dad thinks it was 3 months ago. Even though my mom told him to his face and wrote out the reasons why she left him and mailed it to him he still claims he has no idea why she left him. His life has not improved at all during the 4 or 5 years of being on his own. After my mom left my dad he lived on his own for approximately 3 to 6 months. He was eventually evicted due to not paying his rent. From there he lived with my sister for 2-3 weeks. That living situation ended with police involvement and a lot of different versions of what may have or may not have happened with the whole situation there. From there my wife and I let him stay with us. That lasted for 2 weeks. During that time I saw sides of my father that I never thought I'd see. He became unpredictably threatening and very verbally abusive. His living with my wife & I ended with police involvement due to my dad threatening to climb to the top of the nearby water tower and jumping off. The local police took him away to a mental health clinic. I have no idea what tests may have been done to him while he was there. When it comes to doctors my dad is not very cooperative. I was not impervious to any results or findings while he was in that clinic. From what I know he left the clinic of his own volition. He was dropped off by nursing staff at a local hotel motel. I had to pick him up and bring him to a pay by the month hotel. My mom and I found him an apartment in a 55 and older independent living community. He hated it. He thought it was a nursing home. While he was living there he had many complaints from the various tenants there. Some incidents required more police involvement. All he ever did was complain about living there. He was eventually evicted due to not paying his rent. Then from there my brother and sister found a small townhome for him. Once again he's not happy there. All he wants is my mom to come to him to make every thing better in his life. My mom is not going to go back to him. She has told me that on several occasions. I would never want my mom to go back to him. My dad is his own guardian. My brother, sister nor I want to be POA for my dad because of how overly difficult he can be. We've been firm with him. We've been kind and caring toward him. Nothing seems to work. He is once again being evicted. This place he's been living in is a clustered mess of picked through boxes of miscellaneous and furniture items he has no space or need for. My siblings and I know that he's done this to himself. We don't know what more we can do for him. Other than giving him realtors contact info we don't want to help him out of this current situation. If he does get evicted we don't know where he'll end up. He's refuses to get rid of various possessions because he thinks my siblings or I want them or he's saving them in case my mom comes back to him. He fabricates stories that are nothing but lies. He has no one else but immediate family to turn to yet he's cried wolf so many times that no one wants to respond. Feeling frustrated and helpless. Don't know what more to to do or if I should do more than I have already. If he gets evicted with no place to go will he become ward of the state? Where do I even begin to look for info on this in the state of WI?



Everyone in your family has to be on the same page regarding your father. Your sister should have informed you what she was doing with and for Dad. If she wants to be involved with him, you can’t stop her. It seems like all of you have gone WAY above and beyond to catch Dad every time he falls. He knows you’ll do this, so he makes no effort to change. He is very ill and he needs to be in a facility. Come back and let us know how you are.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Ahmijoy

I thank all who replied to my post here. The advice offered is/was very helpful.
So, about a week ago I took a day off of work to call the local ADRC to see what can be done to help my father. Since he's his own guardian things that can be done for him are limited. The woman I talked to about my dad contacted adult protective services and from there.... my dad can accept or refuse any assistance offered to him. I was also given an address and phone number to a homeless shelter 15 -20 miles away from where he is/was living. As of right now I have no idea if he was evicted. My sister chose to put herself in charge of his finances and taking him to various doctor appointments. She would know more than my brother or I of what my dad's current situation is. She also knew, at the beginning of June, that he did not pay his rent. Why she didn't tell my dad to pay his rent or she pay it for him is beyond me. I've called her several times and no answer. I left messages for her to call me back but so far no return calls.
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Reply to KenNoth47

Your family might want to attend the Family to Family course run by NAMI. You seem to be dealing with a mentally ill adult. They might have some good ideas for you.
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Reply to Marcia7321

Stay out of it. The next time he lands in a hospital, sit down with the social worker and set them straight with his history. And say that nobody in the family can or will take care of him, social services will have to get off their butts and find a suitable place for him. Ask government agencies for advice and put him on their radar.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to Evermore99

I have a similar situation with my own father. Him and my mother split up a few years ago and he's gone downhill ever since. He is currently in jail and this isn't the first time he's been there. He's also been hospitalized and baker acted twice for being suicidal. He is an alcoholic to the point where it has affected his physical and mental health. He has lost everything including his job and our family home. Once he gets out of jail, we don't know where he will go because he can no longer legally stay with my aunt and grandma. I refuse to let him stay with me because he would ruin everything I have ever worked for. We are going to try, again, to get the government involved to get him into some sort of rehab program.

I know telling you this isn't helping but I want you to know that you are not alone. There are lots of broken families out there where everything seems hopeless. Sometimes, there really isn't an answer to situations but you can't let them destroy you. You often can't help someone, even family, unless they want your help. Just do what you can and live your own life the best way you know how. Best of luck.
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Reply to Caregiverology

Your father sounds mentally ill. I'd contact the Area Agency on Aging and identify him as a vulnerable adult who is being evicted to see what they advise. I agree that you should stay out of it - he needs professional help far beyond what you or your siblings or your mom can provide. Please keep us posted. Others may have good ideas too.
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Reply to blannie