Dealing with Siblings about Elderly Father - Frustrated!

by julie
(aurora, il)

when talking with my ailing father, i try to engage him in questions related to his wishes for care and finances. i also have attempted to mirror back his responses when the response he gives appear to go against medical care directives. too many times, i am finding that my older sibling is controlling of his care and decisions without even allowing me to engage in the decision and has assigned her husband to speak on her behalf and therefore, it is more than stressful to accomplish anything positive in regards to my father's care. my father has been left with too many unanswered concerns regarding his care and recently has displayed distrust in my sister and brother-in-law. a close friend of my father has also contributed to back biting by talking to my brother in law about anything she and i have discussed regarding my dad's care and my concerns. he lives out of state and so do i and my sister, so it is difficult for me to know what is going on. no responses are offered to me when i attempt to engage in my father's care and i find my sister through my brother in law to be excessively controlling. i left my father's house recently after one day stay which was to be 3 due to the on going stress and back biting between my sister and my dad's friend. my dad has a serious spending addiction with what funds he has and has drained more money from my sister and my dad's friend for nonsense spending. he is also struggling through serious health issues amongst diabetes and congestive heart failure, so finding his house cabinets filled with alcohol and high fat processed foods

was disheartening. no one in my extended family seems to take seriously that he appears depressed from losing my mom in 1996 and i really think he is drinking and constant impulse spending to soften his pain from not being able to talk about his loss. please, please can you offer some sane direction in dealing with the controlling brother in law speaking for my sister and the non family member that continues to back bite? i have ceased communication with his friend and need to discuss this with someone before speaking again to my sister/brother in law. my dad is in a nursing home and begs me incessantly to take him home to his house. he is wheel chair bound and cannot stand by himself or lift himself to a walker. he still owns a large house on a large area grassy plot and insists that he will go home without home care, ride his tractor, drive his cars, stand behind his tiller and eat burgers and fries at local fast food places. his house is filled with homeopathic that the doctor absolutely stated that these must go. I found this week expired food from 1983, alcohol, and hundreds of prescription and non-prescription meds in his house. when i try to take a stand and remove these items, my brother in law and my dad's friend completely flip out and threaten that my action will cause family problems. i am led to believe that since i have been firm with him (my father) that these issues must stop, i sense that they are contributing to his behavior and enabling further unhealthy choices. they now own my dad's house and control decisions for his care (power of attorney)

please help!

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by: Dane

It is actually a good question and I do understand the concerns you are having about your father. I think it would be best if you have a discussion with your elder sibling about this matter and get to an ultimate solution.

by: Anonymous

My much younger sister means well. She is 200 miles away. But over the years, she has not proven to be of much real help to elderly dad with multiple health problems. She is very beautiful and the baby of the family, so she gets by with a lot.

Dad is very stubborn and independent. He wants my help when he's in a bind physically, but wants to be rid of me as soon as the doctors have him on the mend. To the point of emotional abuse, I am afraid.

I suppose it's his way of feeling like he has some control left. At the same time, I'm taking him to doctor's appointments, and cleaning, yard work, etc. He feels it's his right to have me slave away and then gripe about every single thing I do to help him.
It's all very confusing and hurtful.

I Understand
by: Suzanne

Hang in there. I have kinda the same issues with a younger sister. They live in the same state as my Dad. I was called out to take over everything as far as his care which I did set up Hospice and a dog walker and housekeeper. When I left,my sister and her husband undid all the plans.

Granted, my father did not like the term Hospice but it is what he needs. He has stage 4 lung cancer diagnosed over a month ago...inoperable. Well, so far no one my sister has hired has worked out, and after 2 1/2 weeks of stopping by 2x a day (they live 15 minutes away and it is on their way to and from work to stop at my Dad's)they say they can't do "this" anymore.

It is a frustration, and to top it off my Dad has decided to give up. He will not shower, is having toileting issues, will not eat on his own or take his medications. And no one wants to be around him cause he is angry and scared and is mean to everyone around him. I can look beyond all that, but they can not. But I can't get my Dad to us by plane and they don't want the responsibility.

Tonight he is alone, and I know he should not be. But I have not control over it. I have decided since my Dad is in full faculties mentally, that this is his decision and until he wants other choices...this is how I have to let things be.

Hope your situation finds a better outcome than ours has. Support your Dad's wishes if he is terminally ill. Explain why you wish him to do otherwise with his health. But think of how you would wish to be treated in your later years. Do you want family to support YOUR choices? Even if they are bad for you...they are your choices. I hope that helps you see things a little differently. good luck.

by: Anonymous

I am so sorry for your dad and for the whole situation you are experiencing. (It makes mine seem sooo small.) Try to help whatever way you can and also try to take care of yourself.

by: Sandra

Julie, I am so sorry you are having such problems with your family. Geesh. You will be in my prayers!!!

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