My mother is very sick she has high blood pressure, diabetes and is on dialysis and other health issues I am the oldest of 6 kids, and I am the only one she can depend on to take care of her. I am constantly fussing at my and sisters to help me out because my kids need me too. I am not getting paid for expenses such as gas, I can't get a job now because I love my mom and I want to be there to help her bust is becoming to hard, I am starting to feel tired and burned out, I need help

I don't know if I can say "hate" my siblings, or not. But as they have for the past 40 yrs basically chosen to pursue their own lives, geographically and/or emotionally far removed from my mother, and myself, providing a pitiful amount or type of support that "families " need, in order to not just survive--but thrive, now that she is gone, I feel there is no future for this set of 5 siblings. But who moved? It was not me. My job may have kept me here, or not (spouse had multiple offers to relocate, we turned all down, for sake of my parents). Siblings all just couldn't wait to "get away" from home. So they did that, and never returned. I feel divorced from all of them, because they withdrew their affections, and other relationships were clearly much, much more important to nuture, than their family of origin. I was left to take care, increasingly, of both my parents. I enjoyed it, because all the everyday things I did for them, we're watched by my 3 kids, and you can't fool kids. The other grandkids were coached to send artwork or make phonecalls, and write thank you notes. Surely these actions were "noticed" by my mom. But there is no substitute for spur of the moment ice cream cones between grandma and grandchild. Just the same as there is no substitute for Being There, Every Day. Some kids think they can get away with every other Thanksgiving, or a 5 yr reunion, or sending a gift basket at the holidays. If that feels good to you, do it. However there are those of us who have slept many hours in a green vinyl chair listening to mom breathe raggedly for a couple weeks and also witness her last groans. Do I hate my siblings? No I think they are to be pitied. They missed Life, and Death. May they have courage as they face the rest of their lives, and their deaths, and beyond. No one can ever take away the love and sacrifices we make for our seniors.
Helpful Answer (15)
Reply to malloryg8r

This seems to happen with nearly every family who has a loved one that needs care. Both my friend and I have experienced this with our mothers. Both had Alzheimer's. And in both of our families we had siblings who just weren't around. It's very hard, and yes, I did become very bitter toward my brother. But not so much because he wasn't helping as that he made my mother question whether he really loved her or not. And that's what hurt. To see her go through that pain. I think it's perfectly natural to feel resentment and anger. Just don't let it affect your loving care of your mother. And at some point you will have to let it go. Because you just can't make people do what they're not gonna do. Much love to you.
Helpful Answer (13)
Reply to writervicki

I don't dislike my brothers who don't help. I understand why they don't, so usually don't feel much resentment. When I do, it is because of the position that I am in and not because of anything they haven't done. I won't press upon them if my mother's condition worsens (which it will). When I need more help, my mother has money and can either enter a facility or hire someone to come in. There is no need for everyone's lives to be upended.
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to JessieBelle

I used to "hate" but found it changed nothing, and only harmed me and made me resent having to put my life on hold to care for Mom! Actually, I prefer their silence to their meddling ant critiquing everything I door don't do!!! Mom CHOSE to live with me....and I was at a place where I could take care of her.....yes it's a lonely road....and those who have siblings, family, that supports and gives breaks are VERY few and very, very fortunate.

My recommendation to you is, let go of what you cannot change (yes it's hard!) and focus on finding other ways to get a break...enroll her in a senior center (if she's physically able), some even have transportation available....they pick up a senior take them to facility for lunch and a couple fun activities and bring them back....this gives you a 2-3 hour break! Go to your local chapter of VSN (visiting nurse Assoc) and see what options are available to your situation that would give you a break, help, with your Mom's care! For a while I had a local high school student we knew from church who would come Granny-sit so I could go out to a movie or dinner....unfortunately Mom's health has deteriorated now so it's no longer an option....

Just have to think outside the box....this is a tough time...but it does have its rewards!! You will find you have more energy, the whole tone of your household will change if you let go of that/those you cannot change!! You are in my prayers! (((HUGS))) and God bless you for caring....!!!
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to Quecamom3

First of all, I feel for you and you have come to the right place for advice. We are sort of in the spot your siblings are. My husband moved across country for school and work and is not available to help his parents, who are leaning more and more on his only brother. His parents moved recently - not into senior housing (they are almost 80) but to a new house in a tiny town with NO senior services. So they expect his brother to drive a hour each way for every showfall so he can blow them out - and it has to be right away. They also depend on his wife for laundry and cleaning. Now, it is getting to the point that they don't want to drive in winter and expect their son and daughter in law to drive them to doctor appointments, grocery, bookstore, coffeeshop - etc - ON THEIR SCHEDULE, never mind that the two work full time.
so yes - my brother and sister in law are very angry with us who live across country because we are not helping.

We've suggested that MIL and FIL hire someone local to do the snow blowing and yard work, hire Merry Maids to clean and do laundry, and look into social services for things like driving help. (my mom lives in a tiny rural town and can use a car service for $2 a trip - set up by the county social services). My inlaws refuse because they do not want to PAY someone or have someone strange come into their home. And my brother in sister in law cannot say "no - you need to find local help" so they blame us for not helping. AND they all are mad at us for not coming out every vacation to help - how dare we take our son for a week at the lake instead of coming out to do their work!!!!

My point is - why are you giving up your job and your life? Mom should pay you for gas. Mom should be looking at services that do much of what you are doing. Help ONLY with those things where ONLY you can help. Just because she expects you to do them, does not mean you have to.

Just another view point and probably not a very popular one :(
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to Kimber166

With all due respect, I don't think the choice is between loving and accepting, and hating and fighting. I don't think it's actually a choice at all; I think it's a process of coming to understand the situation you're in and determining what you're willing to do about it, if anything.

Caregiving for a parent is a huge eye-opener for many people. You learn that your family members are not the people you thought they were, that your relationships with them are not what you believed them to be, that their loyalty and concern for you is not anywhere near what you expected or believed it to be.

I personally have been bitterly disappointed by the family members I once was closest with, and painfully disillusioned with the whole experience. I no longer want those "rare, peaceful times" or those "little moments of joy", not with these people. I wouldn't trust them. I don't want to get sucked in again to believing in the goodness or caring of these people, now that it's become abundantly clear that they don't care one bit if my life is miserable as long as their lives go on as before. I go through the motions, making nice at family gatherings etc., but that's all it is. I wouldn't say I hate anyone. Rather, there is a loss of trust, loyalty, and caring connection that I doubt could ever be restored. I doubt I'll have anything to do with the rest of my family once my mother has passed away.
Helpful Answer (9)
Reply to CarlaCB

Hate my siblings because of decisions they've made regarding our mother? No.

Out of 7 kids, 4 of us (the daughters) share the load. I think it has brought us closer together. Two brothers are involved minimally because of health issues. The third brother is not involved because, as far as I can tell, he is a jerk. On the other hand I have no idea of the nature of his relationship with Mom or the state of his own mental health. I'm having a close relationship with my mother and my sisters. Poor guy. He is not.

I have exactly the same opportunities regarding Mother that all seven of us have. I can decide how much I want to be involved. So can they. Hating them for making different decision than I did would hurt me. Why would I do that?

mlanette0079, I think you would be better off psychologically and emotionally if you just consider yourself an only child (in this regard). OK, it is all up to you. You have to figure out a way to see that Mom gets good care while at the same time not shortchanging you own children or harming your family financially. You have already seen that fussing at your sibs is not getting that done, so you need more practical solutions. If you want to start a new thread with questions about practical solutions, I'm sure you will get a big response. Many people struggle with this.

You do need help. Accept that you are not getting it from your siblings. Whether you hate them or not is irrelevant to the solution.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to jeannegibbs

I lost it with my mom tonight when she said she was going to ask my brother for help with her taxes. I have been estranged from him for over 10 years. He sees her maybe every 6 weeks and is NO help. I guess I'm just offering empathy, not answers, but yes it's okay to resent!
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to iloveleah

I can understand resentment. My question for you to answer is how did it end up being you? Do they all live in the same town as you? If not, then of course that makes a difference. You should not be sacrificing your family for your mother. She would not want that. If she's not living in a facility then She should hire the help needed to give you respite. Your health matters too. If your sisters live there and are able to share the load then sit down and make out a rotation calendar and split up the weeks.
I have 3 sisters who live in different states and can not physically be here. But one is close enough to drive and help out as I need when a major situation occurs. She and I made a pact that we are a team. We've even given our team a name and have a mascot and that makes it more "fun". Get rid of the it for a higher purpose. BUT set boundaries and care for yourself.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to Harpcat

I am glad I read these.Makes me feel better, I am not alone. I am the youngest of 6 siblings, but no one cares for my mother. They want to be free and not shoulder any responsibility. Not even lip service. Yeah, we will do it for love and duty inspite of the highs and lows. We are fortunate. But I guess mom would be much happier to see each of her kids shower love and care on her.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to Madhuri24

See All Answers