My dad is caring for my mom and is burnt out. He is negative and complains constantly. I already help a lot, several days in a row I care for mom so he can have breaks but he still complains. He says hiring someone 6 hours per day wouldn't be enough. To be frank he is stressing me more than my mom who has Alzheimers and it isn't fair to me. His negative attitude and inability to care for mom is infringing on my time and health. I actually know how to manage her very well but he refuses to listen to my suggestions. It's not fair to mom either. What on earth can I do? I'm losing all respect for him.

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It's time to take the pressure off of dad (and you) and start looking for care facilities for mom. I understand that you are helping out, but caring for a spouse with AD is the highest level of stress a person can experience. Dad's not going to get any better emotionally and your mom will continue to decline. Dad has reached his caregiving limit. Once a caregiver gets to that point they become desensitized to the needs of their spouse and may themselves decline physically. It's time for a new "home" for mom.
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It's time to place your mom in care. My husband has dementia and I'm sure it seems easy to care for him as he's pretty easy going. But I know I started losing the man I married and became frustrated with him years before even I realized he was losing his mind. Even after he was diagnosed with MCI, he could seem fine to those who didn't live with him. He chats well, but not a damn thing he says has any basis in reality. It's all quite true to him, but NONE of that stuff happened. He doesn't remember anything of his actual life, but his delusions stick with him like glue. He has now progressed to the point that it's obvious to strangers that what he's saying isn't quite right, but I've lived with the "truths" that help him make sense of his world for YEARS and it's taking a toll on me to have to live in his crazy world. And my husband is most likely to get confused and have a million stupid questions at night. And when I've patiently answered his questions and he goes to bed, he comes back 15-20 minutes later and we get to do it all over again. Yes, he's easy to manage, but it's emotionally exhausting and the worst thing is you can lose your ability to be compassionate. It sounds like your Dad is experiencing something similar. I've been here with parents and grandparents. Trust me, it's different when it's your spouse. And as a spouse, realizing that this is likely to be the REST OF YOUR LIFE can be demoralizing and depressing. When I helped out, I got to go home. While getting out of the house and away from a spouse with dementia helps, you get to a point where it just doesn't anymore. You still have to go home and face it all and I know I find myself checking my watch the whole time to see how much time I have left to enjoy my "freedom."
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If he can't do it, he can't do it. He's older than you so his energy level of being in this atmosphere 24/7 has taken its' toll. If you think he is infringing on your health and time and you feel it isn't fair to you- look at it from his perspective. He's telling you he's had enough.

Living in the situation is much, much different than coming and going. Ask him if he is ready for her to go to facility. Or you can offer to take her to your house. You do have a choice to give him relief.
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Beatty Aug 2020
Excellent answer.

I too want more relief for my Father. But I choose not to sacrifice my health to be his substitute. I encorage other supports.
Dad may have to place her. Assisted living and Memory care are private pay. Before this is done though, Dad needs to secure his half of the assets. Mom can be placed in LTC then Moms half will be used to spend down until she is under the Medicaid cap and then Medicaid can be applied for.

If Moms split is enough, she maybe able to private pay for an AL or MC. In my state, if you private pay for an AL for at least two years, u can apply for Medicaid to keep her there.

Dad should talk to a lawyer well versed in Medicaid..
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I agree that his saying that 6 hours is not enough is probably code for he does not want to do it anymore. You might want to evaluate facilities near his home where she could be placed.
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Imho, it's time to place your mom in a facility. Dad is probably not joking about being burnt out.
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Get some home health care with Covid-safety precautions and try to find something to keep dad busy when they are helping. Maybe you can get a little rest.
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Ask him if he would be willing to try 6 hours a day. Personally for me 6 hours was a great help BUT I had to get to the mind set that I was going to LET someone help out. He may feel letting someone help it is admitting that "he can't do it all" and that it is somewhat of a failure. or letting someone help is just going to make your mom more anxious.... or...he may feel guilty that he can't do it all..
there are lots of reasons that someone resists help. One of the biggies is "No one can do for XXX the way I do", "they don't love them as much as I do so they won't do a good job."
There are frightening statistics that 1) Many caregivers die before the person they are caring for due to failure to do "self care". ALSO..2) A good many people that have been caring for someone with dementia also develops dementia. (not sure if that is just due to age and they would have been diagnosed anyway or if it is due to isolation since they begin to shut out others and the only constant contact they have is with the person with dementia)

Tell him to try out the 6 hours a day. Let him choose the 6 hours that would be best for him. Is mom better in the morning? If so let him take a morning with her and have someone come in at noon.
Make some plans to do something with him, just the 2 of you while the caregiver is there.
The first few times he can stay and observe then go out for an hour or two then return. Again so he can make sure for himself that all is well.
If he still resists you could take the hard line and tell him you are concerned about his health and if he does not do this you might be forced to obtain Guardianship and place mom in a Memory Care Facility.

Another few it possible that your dad also has some memory issues and caring for her is part of his routine and he would not know what to do if he was not doing his daily routine? Does he have friends that he can do something with? Is there an Adult Day Care that mom could go to if he really does not want help in? Is she a candidate for Day Care?
Is there a Senior Center open he could go to for socialization if there is a caregiver or if mom is at Day Care?
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What's your own opinion of Mom going into a care facility?

Sometimes a parent has accepted the idea but is waiting for approval from the adult children... but the adult children are against the idea.

Sometimes the parent feels they are too old, the kids should take this on instead. (Or a daughter should).

No judgement - families differ in structure, support & values.

Can you have an honest chat with Dad? Find out his thoughts. If Dad clearly says, "no more" (as he has the right to do) can you work together to get a new care plan that works for BOTH of your parents?
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Hi what level of care is your mom at? Can she still do a lot for herself or is she total care?
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