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Old 02-21-2013, 06:26 PM   #1
mad madam mim78
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Tell me how you would feel....

I'm going to try to sum this up the best I can. Insight would be greatly appreciated.

My father is an old man in pretty bad shape. He has survived cancer last year and suffers from a bit of dementia. My mother is 20 years his junior and is now in charge of taking care of my dad. She works full time and basically is his caregiver.

My father has 2 other children from previous marriage. We have all remained fairly close. My mother has always claimed to like them but she has many issues with them. They are nice people but have never made major efforts to visit. The occasional call or Father's Day, birthday, or Christmas is about it. I will admit i am the same. We're all busy yadda yadda yadda. My father has never been much on reaching out either. Apples don't fall far.

I am now in between my brother and my mother.

My brother just wants to visit my dad when he gets a chance. My mother is basically holding my dad hostage and won't allow his other children to come see him. It's always too inconvenient for her. She has to clean. She has stuff to do. She has to take a nap. Whatever. My brother just wants to visit for a bit.

She is upset because she feels they basically only want to come around when its convenient for them and tread on her time and don't respect all she does for my dad when they contribute nothing except the short visit or call.

My brother is upset because my mom NEVER thinks its convenient for them to come over and he thinks the next time he's allowed to see my dad will be in a casket.

My mom insists that "anytime he wants to come pick your dad up and take him over to their house they can."

My brother doesn't do this so my mom takes that as they don't want to see him that bad. I know how I feel. I just want to know how others would take this. Any advice from people who have dealt with similar situations would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Disers.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:30 PM   #2
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Is there a reason that your brother can't take him to his house? Can he just take him out to lunch? Not sure how far the dementia has gone, but usually people can still go out for short jaunts until they are moderately affected.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:33 PM   #3
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that is a hard one
I would think family should be able to come over at anytime no matter what a house looks like - your mom shouldn't have to clean up for family
but I know my mom would feel like she isn't good enough if the house isn't clean up for company
I think your brother needs to tell your mom that he isn't company he is family & they are going over there to see how clean the place is - he just wants to see dad where dad would be comfortable

maybe try meeting for lunch someplace if you think your dad is up to it
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:42 PM   #4
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My dad is pretty much a fixture on the couch. He only moves to go to the bathroom and get food. I would think taking my dad out of his element at this point is a little overwhelming. He can't walk without assistance and when he's in strange places i can tell it bothers him. I'm sure my brother might think it would be an inconvenience not only to himself but also my dad. Not that I necessarily think my brother has solely my dads best interest in mind.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:43 PM   #5
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So why can't anyone have him over? Or go sit with him so she can go out? Maybe there is more to the story but it sounds like she is the main/primary caregiver, probably stressed and overloaded with little help from his kids. If I'm reading that wrong, please let me know but my guess is that she is tired so she's reacting to that.

Can you set up some regular visits to give her a break? Rotate kids going over to help her out, then you can see him.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:46 PM   #6
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I think your mom needs to be a bit more accommodating, but it probably wouldn't hurt if brother took Dad with him once in a while.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:52 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by StephMK View Post
So why can't anyone have him over? Or go sit with him so she can go out? Maybe there is more to the story but it sounds like she is the main/primary caregiver, probably stressed and overloaded with little help from his kids. If I'm reading that wrong, please let me know but my guess is that she is tired so she's reacting to that.

Can you set up some regular visits to give her a break? Rotate kids going over to help her out, then you can see him.
I would agree with this.

My brother does try to come over when she's not there too but my mom says this is a bad idea because when my brother does leave then my dad gets to moving around and does things he shouldn't do like wander outside. The only option my mom has given him is basically "take your dad to your house". They won't for who knows why. Probably because of the hassle.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mad madam mim78

I would agree with this.

My brother does try to come over when she's not there too but my mom says this is a bad idea because when my brother does leave then my dad gets to moving around and does things he shouldn't do like wander outside. The only option my mom has given him is basically "take your dad to your house". They won't for who knows why. Probably because of the hassle.
Has the brother said to mother "tell me a time when I can come see him."? Maybe if SHE is forced to set a date and time it will be harder for her to back out of it?

Not sure how I would feel if I was you, other than stick in the middle. Although if you see/call dad as infrequently as the brothers, and she doesn't give you the run-around like this, then she is acting like the wicked stepmother.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:05 PM   #9
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Please note that I mean this kindly and in no way am I being snarky.
That said- I think your Mom sounds exhausted, overwhelmed, angry, depressed, and resentful. That is not to say she is a raving loon. I am simply saying that being a caregiver and holding it all together is hard. She loves her husband and is probably grieving him. She is working to pay the bills which is always stressful especially when you are praying all day that your dh didn't wander outside and get lost or God forbid do something to hurt himself because he doesn't realize. I think she is resentful of the way his children want to waltz in and out to visit and she gets to do everything else. I can understand that. She may be thinking-"Oh, you want to visit? Really? God forbid you strain yourself and actually help out. You want to visit then take him to your home where I don't have more work hosting you. See what it is really like. I am struggling here and nobody is helping me at all. Darling son."
Or she may just be tired and simply does not want to deal with anyone. I would probably be mad too. She has a lot on her shoulders. Of course I could be totally wrong but that is my thought on this.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:06 PM   #10
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See if your Mom and brother could work out a weekly visit, say for a few hours on a Sat or Sunday (assuming your Mom has a M-F job). Then your brother and Mom both know he'll be there from say 1-4. Mom can get out and have time to herself, and she knows what time she needs to be home if your Dad can't be left alone.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:08 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by mad madam mim78 View Post
I would agree with this.

My brother does try to come over when she's not there too but my mom says this is a bad idea because when my brother does leave then my dad gets to moving around and does things he shouldn't do like wander outside. The only option my mom has given him is basically "take your dad to your house". They won't for who knows why. Probably because of the hassle.
If your brother will not go pick up his dad and have him over then that is on him.

It is apparent that your mom is not accomodating so you have to work with what is given.

If brother and your mother want to be in a pissing contest then oh well. I would tell you to tell your bro to suck it up buttercup.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:08 PM   #12
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Being a caregiver is extremely difficult and stressful. I do understand that so please don't take my question to mean I don't.

Is your mom doing this to make it difficult for him to help her so she can turn around and either complain about not getting help or control everything because she's doing all the work?
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunshinehighway
Being a caregiver is extremely difficult and stressful. I do understand that so please don't take my question to mean I don't.

Is your mom doing this to make it difficult for him to help her so she can turn around and either complain about not getting help or control everything because she's doing all the work?
That is a good question. My aunt is one who makes things as difficult as possible because it gives her something to complain about, and sympathy from those who don't know better.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mouse House Mama View Post
Please note that I mean this kindly and in no way am I being snarky.
That said- I think your Mom sounds exhausted, overwhelmed, angry, depressed, and resentful. That is not to say she is a raving loon. I am simply saying that being a caregiver and holding it all together is hard. She loves her husband and is probably grieving him. She is working to pay the bills which is always stressful especially when you are praying all day that your dh didn't wander outside and get lost or God forbid do something to hurt himself because he doesn't realize. I think she is resentful of the way his children want to waltz in and out to visit and she gets to do everything else. I can understand that. She may be thinking-"Oh, you want to visit? Really? God forbid you strain yourself and actually help out. You want to visit then take him to your home where I don't have more work hosting you. See what it is really like. I am struggling here and nobody is helping me at all. Darling son."
Or she may just be tired and simply does not want to deal with anyone. I would probably be mad too. She has a lot on her shoulders. Of course I could be totally wrong but that is my thought on this.
I think you hit the nail on the head here!
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:14 PM   #15
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Has the brother said to mother "tell me a time when I can come see him."? Maybe if SHE is forced to set a date and time it will be harder for her to back out of it?

Not sure how I would feel if I was you, other than stick in the middle. Although if you see/call dad as infrequently as the brothers, and she doesn't give you the run-around like this, then she is acting like the wicked stepmother.
Part of me thinks this. I know without a doubt if I wanted to come over my mom wouldn't bat an eyelash. She says the difference between me and my brother is I have kids. She will make any excuse for me but my brother has none. I am equally guilty of being distant.
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