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She had broken a hip and is now in a nursing home.

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Absolutely you should be upset. Was their relationship good or strained previously? Sons should visit their mom’s, but all too often it doesn’t turn out that way. It’s good you’re there for her. Please don’t waste precious time and energy resenting the sons, it makes you bitter and doesn’t change them at all. It’s fine to contact them and ask that they visit, then if they don’t you’ve done all you can
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Daughterof1930 said almost exactly what I was going to say - of course you have a reason to be upset but it really won't get you anywhere. Family dynamics are all different and family conflicts can be full of hidden minefields, this is something best left to your spouse to sort out.
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I would call each of them and ask that they come and see Mom. Explain that a broken hip in older people can be serious. She would be so glad to see them. If they hm and haw around, then just say you hope they won't regret not seeing her. Then say goodbye. Then let it go.
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Hi Kdfors
Im sorry for your wife’s health issues.
Did your wife visit back and forth with her sons before her health issues, when she was able?
There are so many reasons why people do or don’t do things. It’s difficult to know.
I think all you can do is let them know where she is and that she would like to see them if that is the case. Beyond that, let it go.
Maybe help her make calls to them once a month or send them cards for their birthdays. If there are grands, she might include them in those activities. But only if she wants to.
You aren’t responsible for their relationship.
It won’t make her feel better to hear you complain about their not visiting.
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Yes, I would be upset. But I guess another question is “Is your wife upset?” If she’s aware that they don’t visit, and it upsets her or makes her sad, I would be inclined to pursue it vigorously. If she doesn’t know or doesn’t care, then maybe this is something you’ll just have to deal with knowing it’s their loss. Either way, have you told them you’d like them to visit?
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Some people are very afraid of going to a nursing home to visit their parent. They only see the damaged people, hear the ones that are hollering out, and they just can’t do it. They want to remember their parent as they were when young and healthy.
If they already know she is there, they are probably avoiding going.
Of course you are upset, I see nothing wrong with telling them you love her and think they should visit her. Then I agree with “Let it go”.
Just focus on your wife.
Hugs, families are complicated.
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Visiting can be hard, particularly when nursing homes are depressing, when conversation runs out after five minutes but the trip takes three hours, LO doesn’t seem all that pleased to see you, may be tied up doing something else, or at worst may not even recognise you. A couple of comments, for and against pushing.

One ‘for’ suggestion would be to ask sons to send her cards in the post every couple of weeks. I found that they were a big success for a LO who was a long way away, as they were ‘an event’ to receive and the staff often used them as conversation starters. Are there daughters in law? Wrongly or rightly, they might be a better bet to ask for this. You could even try sending them a stock of cards to use – a fairly solid hint!

Against is that if relations with sons are not good, they can always get worse. You can end up on bad terms with them, and the situation can stress your wife out if she understands that something is going wrong. You may be better off letting the whole thing fade. Sad but true! There may seem ‘no point’ to her sons now, but it may change if there is a crisis. That will be easier if your relationship with them hasn’t deteriorated.
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MichaelC Sep 10, 2018
I wwould also ask for pictures of them, their families, etc... With the phones almost everyone carries that is simple and they can send them to you to share...
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If she is not asking about them it might be best to let these boys slide.
My wife and I visit my parents daily, it’s a half mile away. We run to the store and try to stay out of the way.
A year or so we were mad at the 20 or so children, grandchildren, etc who certainly enjoyed the help my parents provided. We sent a photo of my mom after a fall, mom is on blood thinner and it looked so bad my grandchildren would come to her.
One of her favorites was so mad at this visual prompting they excluded my wife and I from their wedding. And, I had to explain this to my parents as well.
You can’t make punk kids grow up.
I hate an ingrate.
I pray that peace and comfort will come into your home.
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robin4gsltw Sep 8, 2018
So sorry to hear but know how it is. Some do nothing but just want the money. You really find out what people are made of in a time of need.
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Yes -- at least I would be. It's a matter of respect, no matter their reasons for not visiting.
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I have to dam near cuss my brother out to pay his mother attention and he lives and works five minutes away. If it walks like a duck and sounds like a duck.... its a duck!
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Of course you are upset! My only advice would be that when people do show up, try very hard to be welcoming and encouraging. Avoid any "It's about time" comments no matter how justified you would be in saying that. Reminding people that what they are doing isn't enough doesn't encourage them to do more.
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You don't need permission to be upset. You are upset. Of course, they SHOULD have come, but there really is no point in worrying about it because they are obviously not worried about it themselves. Besides there is nothing you can do to change them. People always end up doing what they want to do. In any case, If they did come you would know it was only out of a feeling of duty. Just chalk it up to experience.
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Being upset is natural, and justified in your case.

But it can be difficult to visit a really sick parent- I went through that and felt like I was having an out-of-body experience the entire time mom was in hospice before she died.

You don't want to say 'How are you?' because you know how they are- sick and unwell, and may never be well again.

You don't want to seem cheerful- because they aren't. And it seems selfish on your part to be happy when they aren't.

You don't want to talk about your life- because theirs is now confined to a bed or room.. what kind of life is that?

That's when it gets tough, to put aside your own feelings for theirs. To smile when you don't want to, to cry in private because it would upset them. Sending cards is a great idea... short phone calls, too. Just saying 'Mom, I love you' is usually exactly what she wants and needs to hear.

So-- get in touch with those boys and tell them to man up and call their mom and at least send a card. They just may need to be reminded that this isn't about them, it's about her.
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Yes! Don't care what kind of relationship they had with their Mother prior to this. It is a matter of respect for not only their Mother but you as well. I am sure you could use the support. NO EXCUSES! They are adults now & need to "man up" as TC said.

I told my SIL that my bro needed to "man up" post stroke for Mom. Got results immediately but not for long. Am not recommending that approach for you but if you knew my chauvinistic bro you would understand.

I guess this is the treatment you can look forward to when your time comes. I know some folks will take issue with this but here goes! Cut them out of any inheritance now while you can or at least reduce it. You will need that money for your care and maybe now for a companion for your wife to give you some well deserved time off. Clearly they will not be there for you either. It is the right thing to do...they only deserve to get what they give.

As a matter of fact tomorrow Mom and I are cutting my brother out completely. I will use his inheritance to put Mom in respite so I can get my first vacation in 5 yrs! Mind you he lives 5 doors down & does not call or mow the lawn (takes 30 min a week) as I have asked him to do. He visits and brings dinner once a yr for Mothers day, calls on her birthday, has Christmas @ his house and if she can't make it ...o well..

Nope...not enough....I have moved into Moms house for 3 yrs now doing everything including taking care of my house which I miss so much. No guilt what so ever. Why should I have to "pay" him when all is said and done. No way ....and if we never speak again.....whats to loose? we hardly speak anyway...he made his bed.....

Sorry for the rant but I wish more folks would take a stand...spread the word.. you get what you give...their is no free lunch...change the whiny lazy people who "can't" man up and their entitlement expectations.
Do all the Caregivers want to do what they are doing...NO...it is heartbreaking and difficult for us too.
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lucyinthesky Sep 11, 2018
Forgot to add as others have so wisely advised: When you have done what you feel you need to do with respect to the absent sons then yes by all means let it go knowing you did the right thing by your wife.

Mom and I met with the attorney today. It's a done deal. I told the attorney that my brothers inheritance( which is now ours) is his contribution to Moms care since he could not "show up." I feel a weight has been lifted and I feel no guilt.

Moms attorney so "gets it." His Mom just had 2 knee replacements ...some siblings showed up...others did not. Some friends his Mom took care of in the past didn't show up for her either. It's heartbreaking for our LO's.

Mom has a profound hearing loss so is dependent on her one VERY expensive hearing aide. A few wks ago I almost stepped on it as it was on her bedroom floor! Talk about a mini panic attack..she can't hear with out it. Why should a new hearing aide come out of my inheritance or deplete Moms accounts even further as we have been doing a spend down for a possible Medicaid situation.

It feels great and freeing to have that extra financial cushion. And should he ask about it I will certainly thank him for his contribution to Moms care.

I know you feel as I do; I wish he would have showed up for Mom's sake and well being. I hope the sons show up too after you ask and plead once again for your wife's happiness.
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I was. 2 of DH's children hadn't seen their dad in over 3 years and I could count the calls on my hands. No calls, texts, or cards for 2 of his children - the 3rd kept in touch almost weekly.

Now I have nothing to do with the other 2. Their dad is gone now, and I have as much time for them as they had for their father.
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The excuse of a NH being too depressing or you run out of conversation is for the birds. Suck it up. She is your mother and they owe this much to her. You don’t have to speak, just be there and hold her hand. You don’t have to stay in the depressing areas, take her for a walk or to the living room or even back to her own room for privacy. There is no excuse good enough for me to hear that’s acceptable. Sorry I get so passionate about this subject.
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Daughterof1930 Sep 10, 2018
I replied earlier to this, but will say I think you’re very correct. During my mom’s nursing home time we heard the most ridiculous excuses for not visiting, by both family and supposed friends. I told people she’d be happy if they simplay came by and held her hand, the touch would mean the world. So what if it’s a depressing environment, grow up, so are a lot of things!
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So, it sounds like these are not your sons together.  Hard to know what kind of relationship they had.  As upsetting as it is, it's not your feelings that are at the crux of this, but yours for your wife.  Is she upset about it?  If she is mentally capable then it is her issue primarily to deal with as she sees fit. 
As for the sons, they will have to deal with their own feelings.  Seems like they do not much care and you don't mention how far away they are, if they are. 
In time you may get to the point of acceptance and realizing it's not worth your energy to deal with the issue.  I may cuss under my breath when doing things for my elder parents, but it will do nothing to change the situation or make my only sibling offer more especially with her being out of state.
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You can't make someone come visit if they don't feel comfortable enough to. However, once she's gone they'll wish they had of taken the time to do so. What upset me the most after my mom's passing were the ones that never came to visit were sitting at our house grieving and ignoring the fact that, when they had the choice, they couldn't take the time to see her while she was still here. It's not worth getting upset though...trust me on this..you will be able to take comfort that you were there !!
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Like a lot of answers here, I have the same advice... Yes, you should be upset. However, it's not going to help you take good care of your wife to be angry, nor help her to feel bad about their inconsideration. Let it go if you can!
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I have the same problem with my three sisters who rarely came to visit or help me with our mom's Alzheimer care even though two of them lived less then 5 minutes away and passed the house every day picking their kids up from school. I use to beg them to stop by, even double park and at least let the kids run up the stairs to kiss grandma on the cheek then quickly leave. On Halloween, we would wait by the door hoping each ring would be the grandkids. Nope. When I asked why they didn't stop to trick or treat, I was given various answers. The worst one came the first year when one of the sisters said that she didn't know we were giving out candy. Please! So, I share your pain and disappointment with family members. This is not how we were raised. I'm left confused and bitter by the treatment because I am sure all of them will remember to show up when it comes time to read Mom's trust. Please let it go if you can. Don't end up like me bitter and prone to ruminating on the hurtful treatment. I'm working hard on stopping my brain from torturing me with past thoughts on family that were no shows.
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Remember, holding on to resentment is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die. As my mother said, "Just consider the source".
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YES!
Any child or grandchild or cannot find the time to visit the person who had unconditional love for them is just waiting in the wings to see what or if they're getting any monetary gain after the person passes.
Right now, Glen Campbell the singer, has 3 children from his 2nd marriage who are going to Court BECAUSE HE DIDN'T LEAVE ANYTHING TO THEM. His entire estate was left to his ex-wife and their children.
That my friend is most likely what you're seeing.
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Not unless you have specifically suggested that they might come and visit her, and, ideally, suggested good days for it.

If you have done that, and they've responded with feeble excuses or indifference, then you should feel free to make your own estimation of their qualities. But don't share your opinion with your wife, and if *she* is upset - which is actually what matters - then try to stay supportive but neutral. If you try to explain away their uselessness, you're undermining her justified feelings. If you join in with the condemnation, you'll make her feel worse and make it harder for there to be any rapprochement later. So you can't win, there.

Pointing out that you're with her and you love her, or that other people come and see her (if they do :/), or that the NH is looking after her nicely, or any other kind of positive distraction is a better bet.
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As caregivers, I think we are all entitled to feel whatever we feel.
I have always tried with everything I could pull together, to be the “cheerful visitor”, even when, in one case, my relative was actively suffering and gave me the impression of not wanting anyone present.
In that situation, other survivors requested me to stay at the bedside so that THEY could have a few hours’ respite, and I complied.
I’ve gone in snowstorms, when loved ones are physically ill, combative, agitated, hostile, needed eating or toileting assistance.
I give myself NO PERSONAL CREDIT because I go, nor have I EVER received anything as any inheritance after they’ve gone. I just do it because I love them.
On the other hand, our once large family has produced a few “crepe hangers”- people who visit once, cry over the patient, leave the room and whine piteously about how terrible Uncle Andrew looks, say they’ll come often because Uncle Andrew and Aunt Pauline “need” them, then vanish, never to be seen again.
In my present caregiving setting, I am close enough to drop in almost every day, bring whatever is needed, share a discussion, and let my LO “throw me out”.
Crepe hangers have not seen LO since July.
I personally can’t think of any advantage to begging or guilting people into coming. If it takes a huge effort on my part to drag someone to showing up, it’s more energy to do that than I can summon.
Part of MY personal responsibility to her as I see it, is to remain neutral about the Crepe Hangers, and to leave it to a Higher Power to figure out what should happen in her future.
My LO enjoys seeing us, has come to miss Crepe Hangers less all the time, and doesn’t actively ask for them.
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