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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 1 of 11

I'm so sorry that you are in this situation. But you should never allow your father to treat you the way he does. 

You simply must confront him and tell him that its not acceptable to treat you as he does. Follow up by letting him know that there are consequences for his snotty unloving behavior.  You are not his slave, you're his adult daughter. 

If moving out turns out to be your best option, then get in touch with your local health and human services because, chances are, he'll get into trouble. They will step in.

I agree with one person who wrote that you should get him to a doctor for a check-up and psychological evaluation. Something there just doesn't sound normal. Some of what you mentioned sounds like a form of dementia, like the kind that affects reasoning and behavior.  I can't remember if it is Lewy Body disease or what, but you may have to do some research.

 I have to wonder if his behaviors are the result of him having been abused by his own parents. In any case, he would probably be better off with a male caregiver. Start making calls to agencies and see what it's going to take. Your health is certainly going to suffer if you aren't taking care of yourself. 

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 2 of 11

You really need take a step back and look at the person that is treating you this way. Your mother saw that he only thinks of himself and doesn't care about you or anyone else as much as he cres about himself. Sometimes they act that way to make you feel everything is your fault so you will stay and keep putting up with their actions.I'm sorry you feel you should keep putting up with his actions. THINK OF YOURSELF, and change who is taking care of him.

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 3 of 11

Please now that a support group will help you, i take care of my mother who is 90 with minor dementia, arthritis and scoliosis.  Things I wish everyone knew: 

1. Get a Dr. who will do a complete check and make sure Medications are correct. 

 2. Keep a journal of what is happening with behavior and health.  Make sure to be honest and share it       with the dr./drs.

 3. Disposable underwear is awesome! If it is necessary, do not make it an option- just fact.

 4.  Eliminate keys for car, door, etc. if those things are dangerous. Replace them with fakes.

 5. Understand that you may be able to reason thing through---you may not. Don't try if it is impossible

 6. Get all the legal things in order as early as possible.

 7. Remember you are watching someone go backwards.  It is painful and natural.

 8. Take care of your own needs.  You need your own life, activities and friends. Get help as needed.

 9. Instant breakfast is about the same as dietary supplement drinks and lots cheaper. Ask your Dr.

 

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Hello there Sole Caregiver, and the two others who are solo and nearly burned out. You all must be exhausted and the frustration must make you ill sometimes with the stress. 

 

You've gotten great advice, including the inspiring story of a caregiver who moved out and taught the care recipient an important lesson!  

 

I wish that the next steps could be done by someone else on your behalf, since you have so much to juggle already. If you can afford it, you can hire a geriatric care manager who would immediately intervene with your dad, provide you with supportive counseling, and provide a comprehensive plan for his care and your detachment from this prison you're both in.  Care managers are a little bit cheaper than paying out of pocket for a psychologist or social worker, and way way cheaper than a lawyer. My agency charges $115 an hour here in the Washington DC area. Seriously, think about it. You can find one at www.caremanager.org based on your zip code.

 

For free advice, someone mentioned Area Agency on Aging: you can find the one for your area at www.eldercare.gov. It's a government site because it's your tax dollars at work. Every person in the USA has free access to services for people 60 and over. This includes a social worker who knows how the system works and can figure out what your father is eligible for. She (most of us are women) will hopefully also have some wisdom about how to give him some tough love and advise you on how to detach and let him take some responsibility for himself. 

 

Yeah, he's your dad, but that does not give him the right to ruin your life. 

 

I, too, agree with retired traveler. 

 

If he is competent to run his own life, then he needs to run it. How he's managed to blame you for all the woes of the past 12 years boggles the mind. But you don't have to agree with his fictional account. 

 

You have a new-ish job. You are new to the community and so are trying to establish a community of friends and perhaps a faith community, some hobbies, something else. You have some trouble with your eating, and boy can i relate to that. Your boyfriend is away a lot, and probably doesn't have a huge amount of sympathy for your plight with your father. You DO have a lot on your plate, and it ain't all healthy stuff.

 

So, as they say in Alanon, take what you like and leave the rest.

 

What resonates with you? What is one next step you can take that will begin your journey of reclaiming your life?  What else can we help with? We can listen. We have lots of wisdom here. 

 

BTW, my mother didn't take one word of advice i gave her. She died at age 55 from entirely preventable illnesses. I went to Alanon and to a psychotherapist to help me with my guilt. What i learned is that you can take a horse to water but you can't make them drink. And, you don't have to take on the responsibility of the resulting thirst. For Pete's sake. 

 

tell us more.

 

jane

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 5 of 11
I can totally identify with your situation. I am also a sole caregiver for my 79 year old mother. In addition to her immobility, incontinence and heavy dimension, she suffers from many other things such as kidney disorder. I also feel as though I am at the end of my rope.
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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 6 of 11
Please--save YOURSELF. This could drag on for a long time, and you should be on your own. My mother is 88 and won't allow me to bring anyone into the house to help. I don't live with her and I'm 63, but even my intermittent contact with her winds me up like a cheap watch. (She's always had that effect on me.) It's too late for me, but not for you.
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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 7 of 11

You have a lot on your plate!! 

 

I know it is much easier said than done to cut a loved one lose. Despite how he treats you, he is your dad and you feel an obligation to him. You-and no one- though deserves to be abused, and that is what your dad is doing. I don't know if he has always been like this or if it is just in the last few years, but no one deserves to be treated like he is treating you. Is getting help in the home possible? Some businesses/places of work now offer elder care services and support. It would be worth asking someone, maybe in your HR department. There are also services through the Area Agency on Aging, and you can try the website Benefitscheckup.org. 

 

As difficult as it may be, it may come down to you having to put some distance between you and him. After living with my grandparents for 5 years, my grandpa passed away. My grandma and I were never very close, and we clashed after he died. I know now we were both grieving in our own way. She had always been a very demanding person who did not appreciate anything anyone did for her (something that my grandparents fought over), insisting she could take care of herself despite all her medical issues and being blind for 20 years. She was stubborn and despite having 4 kids, none of them would help with her because of this. It was very hard living with her. I ended up moving out for almost a year, and that was the best thing I could have done. She asked me to move back in, and I did very hesitantly. She was so different than she was before, much more patient, appreciative for the help and not nearly as demanding. We became very close and I enjoyed my time with her. It wasn't perfect, and we would still have disagreements, and it was easy sometimes for her to slip into that demanding mode, but it was so much better than before.  We would never have had that relationship if she didn't have that time to try on her own, and realize that she needed help. 

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 8 of 11

@retiredtraveler wrote:

Sure. The advice is to move out (you are 30 years old), and help him find someone to assist him. If he won't cooperate in getting home health care, then he's on his own. I'm sure someone else will take great offense at my attitude, but it is NOT your responsibility to take care of him. Especially if he is, as you say.

   It's his life, he chooses to be a so-and-so.

 

   Don't ruin yours.


I am in agreement with retiredtraveler. It seems your dad forms a toxic relationship with all those that have tried to be near him. His lack of respect and gratitude for the things you do for him shows the value that he puts on those things. If he doesn't value them; then you shouldn't either.

 

Suze Orman says people first, money second, then things. This is a case where continuing to help this person will eventually affect you as a person (has already), your money (has already) and your things (has already) more than you are even talking about now.

 

He has put himself in the "PLACE" where he is now; not you. It is not your responsibility to take him out of that "PLACE".

 

Try to get a professional to talk to him, and if he doesn't take their advice; cut him loose.

 

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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 9 of 11

I agree with retired traveler.  You and your dog need to get out of that house.  From the sounds of it, he appears to be able to take care of himself in some form or fashion.  I say that because you mentioned the motorcycle.  Is he healthy enough to ride it?  If so, that seems to be enough evidence that he can still take care of himself.  Can you enroll him in Meals on Wheels?  I'm sure part of your worries have to do with the smoking.  "Will he fall asleep with a lit cigarette?" and "Will his COPD become worse?" are questions that many of us would ask.  Does he still dress and bathe himself?

 

You need practical advice and a plan.  There are several posters here who are very good sources of just the type of information you need.  Keep checking back for other replies.  This is a busy season and I'm sure those posters will see your post soon and share their collective wisdom with you.  It may be helpful to include the state you now live in because most states' information on Social Services and matters concerning the health and welfare of the elderly are available online.  Good luck to you!  ~  Mimi

“The third-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the majority. The second-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the minority. The first-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking."
War With Honour, 1940 ~ A.A. Milne
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Re: Sole caregiver, can't take much more

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Message 10 of 11

Sure. The advice is to move out (you are 30 years old), and help him find someone to assist him. If he won't cooperate in getting home health care, then he's on his own. I'm sure someone else will take great offense at my attitude, but it is NOT your responsibility to take care of him. Especially if he is, as you say.

   It's his life, he chooses to be a so-and-so.

 

   Don't ruin yours.


"...Why is everyone a victim? Take personal responsibility for your life..."
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