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That just sounds horrible does'nt it. My husband and I have been caring for my father for 15 years. He has lived in our home in an in-law suite that we built on for him. I have two brothers and two sisters and only one of them has just recently started helping us. My father has had 12 cornea transplants, has diabetes, arthritis, is depressed and sits in his part of the house all day now doing absolutely nothing but trying to watch tv and listens to the radio. I have tried to get him outside help by having someone come from the office of older adults to talk with him and offer him transportation options during the week so he can get out. He refuses. My husband and I work full time. I have to schedule all of his many doctor appts. late in the day or use vacation to take him. We have no real time for ourselves. He makes us take him shopping every Saturday whether he really needs to go or not. I understand his need to get out but he refuses help outside of ours. How do I approach the subject of assisted living outside of our home. He gets angry at everyone and everything that is not done the way he wants it. I want my life back. I have sacrificed 15 years for him with no appreciation. Maybe it would be different if he were a nice old man but most days he is not, at least not to us. When he is around other family members or out in public he is a totally different person.

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You've gotten some wonderful tips here. I just want to emphasize that you are not "horrible" for thinking and feeling the way you do. You've done so much. Changes need to be made. Think it through, but do what you must. I loved the comment above that said most people don't want to move to AL - until they get there. Once they adjust to having peers for company, many if not most, love it. It opens up whole new horizons and many bloom. Of course, this is not always the case and it does depend on finding a good AL. People in AL also need family care. They just get extra care, and that is good for a lot of people.
Carol
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You know, I've heard Dr Laura say in the past that 'honoring your father and mother' means: making sure they are fed, safe, being taken care of. She never said that the honoring part means the parent has to LIVE with the child. I don't agree with everything she says, but in this instance I do. Why is it the only alternative that many adult children consider when they want to 'honor their father and mother'? Not everyone can do it and not go insane. There is no shame in saying that 'I'm just not able'.
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Your job as caregiver is to make sure that the person's physical needs are taken care of and that they have a chance to socialize and have activities if they want. Ensure their environment is safe. You can't make someone happy if they are inclined not to be happy.

I always recommend that caregivers take time out for themselves because you will be able to give more in the end that way.

One suggestion is to get a home health aide for all of his or her waking hours.

Many elderly parents do not want to go to an assisted living facility - until they get there. It's freedom for them
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You need to do what's best for you at this point. I truly understand your situation. Pray about it and ask God to help you make the decision, and forget about everyone else's comments. When you enter into peace with your answer, you can believe that's from God.
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My parents (mom dimentia/parkinson's, dad - alzheimers) have lived with me and my family for over a yea now and I wish they were somewhere else. it's a smelly, confusing, stressful, depressing, expensive, smelly dirty bizarre, sleepless nightmare. They don't know who I am, they don't know that they live here, I'm taking care of 2 strangers. I am burnt out . I want out.
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Elaine...I am so with you on that one..almost have the same situation. For the past 12 years I have been doing my mom's bidding. For the past 12 years I have given up Sundays to take her shopping and do various things. She would never ever take up the notion by me having someone else do it...never. So now as she is declining I am even more stuck. She refused to go to an NH, even though she claims she is so bored living alone. I come over there on Tuesdays and Thursday eves and am there practically all weekend. She has a caregiver 20 hours a week. She has her nasy hooks into me until the day she dies or has to go for some reason into an NH...and then her nasty little quip of 'NO WAY' of not going into a NH will change...I can't wait. She has Narcissitic Personality Disorder and they don't change until their dead. I have researched this subject and nothing changes these types of folks...they train a family member to do their bidding..it's a sick type of personality. So I am totally burned out...can't wait for this hell to be over with her. She has been my nightmare all my life and it won't be over until she is gone gone gone!
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I'm addressing this to everyone who has commented. Hind site is twenty-twenty but these situations can be avoided with planning ahead of time. Get your parents needs and desires written down while they are in their right mind. Discuss a plan and pick out the living arrangements. Every situation is different so have different scenario's in place for different health care issues. Most parents don't want to be a burden on their children or grandchildren. When these situations are planned out ahead of time, arrangements can be made to place in independent "step down" LTC facilities. Parent's and/or grandparents can visit different facilities and be in control of there own future.
FYI, In my experience as a nurse working in LTC, 9/10 times, the older they get, the more they revert back to child-like behavior. And as with children, boundries need to be established and followed through with. Most of the caregivers commenting in this thread are being manipulated to the fullest extent. Your loved one is using the love and obligation you feel for them like a weapon. You are being bludgeoned over and over by the "guilt" mallot. The loved one is the Puppet Master and the caregiver is the puppet.
My second best advice for the caregivers struggling in this thread is this; Do you feel as though your loved one is getting the BEST possible care living with you? Are all of their psychosocial needs being met? Are they truely happy? Do you provide activities for them on a daily basis? How much time do you have to spend with them? It's not just the safety, nutrition, and medical needs that need to be met. It's so much more. Like children, they need A LOT of attention. Your loved one will kick, scream, manipulate, and guilt trip you all the way to a LTC facility but in the end, they will adjust and be happy because they KNOW, deep down inside, they are a burden to you but are too scared for any kind of change. Therefore they would rather torture you and live in the condition they are in because the alternative is too terrifying to even consider.
So, sit down, communicate your intentions with your loved one, visit several LTC facilities and include them in the process, then let them pick which one. It will provide them with the empowerment they need and put the decision in their court. The only decision on the table will be which LTC facility they have chosen. YOUR HOME is off the table! Be Strong and Good Luck Caregivers!
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I feel for you. I finally threw in the towel and took my mother to a nursing home. I understand taking care of a parent that does his/her share (even if that share is very, very small), but to care for someone that truly doesn't care anymore is exhausting. And I don't think it is fair to the children, grandchildren, or anyone else that has to give up most, all, or even part of their way of living for no appreciation, consideration, or even a kind word. Consider getting him into a nursing home. He will be better because he will have all the care he needs and you will have your peace of mind back. Then the only thing you have to worry about is visiting every so often and keeping up with his well being by phone/visits/email/whatever. The guilt will be there, some stress will be there, but it all comes out fine at the end and it will be only part of your time, not your entire life. We weren't made to carry the burden of thoughtless parents or grandparents. I don't have kids, but even now I'm thinking of a niece and nephew that might be kind enough to take me in when I'm old, and if they are so kind, I sure am going to do my best not to be a big pain in the ass to them. It is simply not fair.
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I know that this post above regarding the couple who took care of her father for 15 years was back in 2009. I too, am dealing with a problem that appears to be so much worse than anything else in this world! I am an only child with no family and no support, no friends as I have isolated myself, drowning in deep depression and seeking psychiatry visits with meds to sleep, anti-depression meds, psychology appointments and counseling...I have given up my workouts being a fitness nut and body builder. I am only 42 years old and the last 3 years have been a wreck...as my 78 year old father came from overseas at his disposal to his home in America. I had him evaluated, and advocating using all of my strength and power, found the rare brain disorder called "NPH"-normal pressure hydrocephalus, where most doctors told me that he had Alzheimer's as the symptoms are exactly the same. Going through all the "riff-raff" trying to get him the surgery to save his life in dealing with all of the medical bureaucracy, appointments, the emotion, finances, and the list is endless. It is now 3 years later...he got his surgery and as of the first of this year, I had decided to come take care of him surrendering my apartment. He is better, but the disorder was found too late, so there is permanent damage. He has left me with a nightmare and an international apartment that he owns that I know nothing about and he claims that he needs to go there....as he can't even barely take showers on his own.

I am at witts end and about ready to have a nervous breakdown! His demands are great, he rehashes the past and we argue saying that I am jealous of him, and he has no appreciation for the fact that I care for him. He doesn't support me in anything that I do financially....as with him its all about $$ and he won't let me hire people to help him....even though I am POA. I simply don't have the heart to place him somewhere, but my health...mentally, physically, emotionally is at stake. I don't know what to do and I have reached out to everyone that I can image.

Thank you. LEE from Oregon
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Desperado, what did your counselors encourage you to do? I can't imagine one worth his or her salt would say maintain the status quo. Weather you have the heart to or not does not really seem to be the issue for it sounds like your health is about to crash and then what would happen to him? Is he a Vet? If so, they supply support for those in need to go to a nursing home. It sounds like for your well-being and his safety and care that he needs to go there. Has the doctor told you if he thinks your dad is competent or not? If so, then it is time to take charge and use that POA for what it was entrusted to you to do in a situation like this.
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