Should I just give up family for my mom? - AgingCare.com

Should I just give up family for my mom?

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My mom had a brain tumor removed 5 months ago. She has weakness on her left side and needs 24/7 care. I live 150 miles away but at first, I left my family every week for 2-3 days to take my turn staying with her. After 5 months everyone was exhausted and needed an out so they looked to me. My mom does not want to move closer to me because her family of brothers and sisters are near her and have been helping with caring. After the last fall, in hospital for 3 days, 21 days in rehab she decided to go home with caregivers. I had already set up an assisted living facility but it was her decision. Her sister who leaves 1 minute away visits everyday. We travel the 150 miles to take her to doctors or to just visit and then travel 150 miles back home. I used to travel alone until I had a scarey road incident, now my husband drives. My husband and I are retired and take care of our 2 grandchildren, so we plan visits around them and other obligations. My mom was just taken to hospital for a severe UTI recently. The nurse and nurse practitioner called me to ask questions. Family never contacted me. This has happened before and she is given antibiotics. She has chronic UTIs . We have our grandchildren for end of summer camping vacation another 60 miles further away. We did not drop everything to go this time. I have been in phone contact several times a day to nurses to check in. She has been sleeping a lot which is why I call nurses instead of her room. I ask the nurses everyday about calling in her room and they tell me to just let her rest. My mom's sister, my aunt is not helpful to me. These relatives are very close knit and they tell me very little, which is why I call nurses. My family has been supportive but it is starting to weigh on my physical as well as mental health. I have read about people losing friends and family taking care of a parent. My husband keeps telling me I need to take care of myself. I do not want this to happen to me. Thank you for listening.

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If she has assets &/or income, look into Memory Care or AL. Their patient/staff ratio is usually much lower, so they can just be a nicer alternative. My plan is to keep Dad in Memory Care until he's beyond a two-person assist or passes. If I use up all the money, at least during that time he'll just have a better living arrangement. I want to add that I kept him with me for 6 months, and yes, I did have to give up my life. (He has PD with dementia, wheelchair bound).
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Like said, have her evaluated for a nursing home. It is lots easier taking her from a hospital right to home than getting her home and then find out she needs long-term nursing. Medicaid can be applied for if she has no money. If she has money, use it for private pay until time to file for Medicaid. If her family is her age, they may be relieved they no longer have to care for her. Hope you have POAs in place. Makes things easier.
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There is not a lot more you can do. Your mother refuses to move closer so let the people who are close to her look after her. You can't seriously consider living up your life so hers does not change. That would not be fair to your husband...or you.
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I believe you need the help of the social worker in the hospital. This is what happened to me. Mom was admittednto the hospital with a severe UTI. She was hallucinating, delusional, paranoid and combative. The hospital got my permission to do a psychological evaluation on her and then told me mom could no longer live on her own. Moving in with me was not a consideration. I am a full-time caregiver for my husband and also help care for my grandchildren. Mom complained loudly and constantly how miserable she was in the nursing home but I knew in my heart that this was the best place for her.

Truth is, you can only be used if you let yourself be. It sounds like you already have back-up from family, so let them help. Slowly phase yourself out. That's not to say you abandon her, but don't be quite so readily available to reschedule your life and drop everything to drive all those miles. My grandsons are my life and salvation as I'm sure your grandchildren are. You won't regret spending time with the babies, but might become resentful of Mom taking your time away from them.
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Listen to your husband and take care of your grandchildren. If you mother can't be moved closer to you do what you can but don't change you family Dynamics. If it doesn't work out the way it is now your mom or her siblings can come to you if they need you. Your grandchildren should come 1st.
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