Eldest daughter caring for mom and dad

by Susan
(Broomfield, CO)

Six months ago I moved my mom and dad to Colorado to be closer to family. Namely me and my brother. Mom has late stage Parkinson's and dementia and had to be put into a nursing home. Dad had numerous health problems right off the bat. Long story short, I have made all the arrangements as far as finding health benefits for mom to be in a nursing home and managing all her care and then once that was done finding dad a place close by so he can visit mom. I have done all the care taking, cooking meals, driving dad to doctor appointments, etc, etc. I lost my job prior to all this happening but now I cant even consider going back to work. I have too much responsibility with my parents.

My brother and his wife live the same distance that I do and neither one want to hear about all that I do or offer to help. My sister in law does not work and my brother is much to busy with his life and fancy vacations. When ever I bring it up they avoid the subject all together. They only visit mom and dad once in a while but don't do anything to help.

I did not realize how many people that are out there that feel the same way I do. I am just now starting to feel the anger,resentment and guilt. Any suggestions?

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Stay strong
by: Anonymous

I do understand what you are going through. My mom has Alzheimer's and she is at home with split shift / twelve hours of care. She has four home health aides that care for her two shifts daily.

However, I have to give her the medications she needs twice a day and handle the food shopping, the calls to the doctors and dealing with the home care agency and the re-certifications with medicaid and any other agencies that require paperwork. I have not gone on a real vacation in seven years. My sister, died in July and would come on Thursdays and help out financially. My brother works too many hours a day and cannot come here to help. However, he has picked up some of the financial burdens that I cannot handle.

You need to sit down with your brother and discuss how you feel and explain why he needs to step up and be there as a support for you and the parents that raised him. There is always one child that does everything in the family. There is no reason why your sister in law cannot help take your father to see your mother. My cousin had both parents in an assisted living at the same time. When my uncle became too ill to remain there he went to the nursing home part of the facility.

Does the home that your mother is in have an assisted living part that your father could live in? Your brother needs to assist you financially to help with your father's expenses too even if he cannot visit or take care of him.

I know you feel angry and resentful- don't even if it is hard. You are doing something wonderful caring for you mother and making sure that the care she is receiving in home is the right care and your presence is very important. The nurses at the home need to know that you are on top of her care and you are visible. Hope this helps Hang in there... you are strong and can handle it.

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