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.