Clueless and Annoying Coworkers

One of my biggest challenges is clueless and annoying coworkers who always ask me clueless questions like, "What did you do over the weekend?", "Are you going anywhere on your vacation?" or "Do you have any plans for the weekend?" I am getting tired of answering their clueless questions.

Having an elderly parent whose health is tenuous and having no backup coverage, I have not been able to travel away from home for a number of years. My parent refuses strangers to come in and it's not something that I choose to fight with her about. So I take "staycations" which at least are relaxing and I am getting my affairs in order in the event that her health declines further. I am downsizing my possessions and getting my house ready for eventual sale since I do not plan on staying in it after my parent is gone. However, my coworkers do not seem to understand my lifestyle and seem to be constantly judging me, my mother, and what they believe my life should be like. I find this very tiresome and I find that I am constantly defending my life, my mother, and my choices with my coworkers.

I have not encouraged any conversation with them about it and in fact I am very reticent and almost isolate myself from conversation on the job but invariably my coworkers do ask a few questions and even when I give them very short answers, they often make judgmental comments.

I often feel upset and defensive after contact with them so I have tried to isolate myself in my cubical and not talk to them. How do other people approach this situation? Do you run into clueless and often nosy coworkers who try to give you unwanted advice about how to handle your parent?

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I Understand
by: Anonymous

I know exactly how you feel. I take care of my elderly parents and disabled sister and when my coworkers ask if I have plans for Labor Day weekend or what I did over my summer vacation (I'm a teacher), I just say, "The usual."

Luckily, my colleagues don't push it, since it's been five years now. But you'd think they'd know by now.

Their Turn will be Soon
by: Anonymous

I have not been working very much in the past few years and I too wish I have coworkers to distract myself from the stress of being a 'caregiver.'

Let's face it, no one is not going to ever understand or emphasize on what we are going through. I find when I go on interviews, people ask me what I have been doing for the past few months. When I said, I have a ill and disabled mom that needs my constant attention 24-7. They said well we will let you know which means don't call us we will call you.

It is What it is.......for You
by: Debby

Don't let their comments or questions upset you. It just wastes perfect energy. Most people do not understand how we (caregivers) can give of our time so freely to our parents or anyone we love so unselfishly. They could not do it but forget that there are people who do.

We are special people and Thank God for us. I have lived next to my parents all my life and have always been there for them. Yes.....I sometimes get frustrated and wish my life were my own but I pray each night that God will give me time for me to have after my Mom passes. My Dad is now gone and I would not have changed a thing......I would have done even more........We are blessed and we are special and you hold on to that in your heart.

Our parents are blessed to have us. I feel so sorry for the ones who do not have children like us and I see that all the time. I'm blessed for having 2 ladies that I work with closely and are going or have gone through this themselves and completely understand.

Good luck to you and hopefully one day you will peek into the next cubicle and there you will find an understanding new friend.....I wish this for you.

I Get It
by: Anonymous

I don't have the co-workers (wish I did) but I understand the questions. Your life becomes no longer your own, especially with elders who do not want other people into their home, so you're stuck. Bring your potential caregivers in while you are there to hopefully begin a bond.

Caregivers aren't always in it for the patient, so keep your eyes open. When you find someone special pay them well, and then take the well-earned time you need for you.

Sounds like a lot of work, but it's worth it. Mom/Dad doesn't want "strangers" but you need a break.

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