Double Whammy

I am experiencing a double whammy and would like someone in the same boat to give me some support (please, no comments from others who are not in the same boat!).


I am a single woman in her 50's who is taking care of an elderly parent. My married sister doesn't help at all. She used to help a little but then got married and moved away and eventually had children so she hasn't helped at all since the children came along. I've pretty much accepted that I am alone with the care giving, but it still bothers me from time to time, especially when she and her husband go off on a nice vacation.

The double whammy is not only do I have to cope with doing all of the care giving by myself, but I have to deal with the family dynamics of having a married sibling with children who gets all of the attention and affirmation whenever she visits.

It is just very difficult to cope with seeing my sister idolized because she gave birth to grand kids. At the same time, my mother treats me with the usual "oh you again" attitude, because I'm the one helping her deal with all of the unsavory aspects of her aging which she would love to deny. I'm the one who has to remind her that it's high time to start getting rid of her knick knacks or that she isn't eating properly or that she needs a bath.

My sister strolls in and commands my mother's respect and admiration because she is a "Mom" like her, whereas I am a single career woman who has led a life that my mother cannot relate to. My mother criticizes me for how I cut the ham or how I hang the pants in the closet but she absolutely idolizes my sister. She is full of bear hugs and compliments for my sister but then as soon as the door is closed, she turns into the Wicked Witch with me.

This is the double whammy that I deal with. Not everyone on this post has this issue so please, do not respond back to me unless you are in the same position as I am (single and never married woman with a married sibling).

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by: Christine

Your parameters for answering were very strict; hope I'm not intruding. I'm an only child, divorced from a nice man who I was never in love with, but married to leave the house. Dad's a tyrant. 20 years of apathy later my husband and I divorced and it wasn't his fault. But my parents still think that I did nothing but the wrong things.

Mom's now had a heart attack and two strokes and I live with them to care for her. Dad still thinks all I do is evil, although I cook, clean laundry and bathroom mom every single day. Nothing I do is correct, so I empathize. What good do you have to do for someone to just get it...?

I'm with you...

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