Financially, Emotionally and Physically Exhausted

by Dee
(Maryland)

Since my mother passed away unexpectedly, my father feels that his adult children should assume his care because he does not want to leave his home.


Since none of us live nearby or even in the same state, we arranged for care in his home a few hours every day and set up a schedule to visit on weekends.

Unfortunately, my sister was diagnosed with cancer so more frequent visits were required.

Eventually, the strain of working full-time and serving as caretaker was too much and I ended up in the hospital. My youngest sister assumed all of the weekend duties until I got better.

It has been almost one year and we cannot keep up this pace. My father is either unwilling or incapable of taking care of himself and his home. He cannot shop, cook, get his own meals or clean and needs some assistance with dressing.

He is living in a large two story home but cannot walk up and down the stairs or keep with the maintenance. We go in every weekend to shop, provide upkeep on his home and prepare food so he just reheat but even this is too much for him.

Financially, he is well-off but he refuses to pay for his groceries, medicines, clothing, etc.

Since he wants to stay close to his church and friends, we suggested that he sell the home and move into assisted living. He is objecting saying that he cannot afford it but I know better.

I am just so tired, angry and frustrated. I think some of my childhood scars from his alcoholism and abuse of my mother have resurfaced. I feel like I did when I was a child...totally helpless and overwhelmed.

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Not As Easy As Some Think
by: Anonymous

Sometimes unless your parent has been declared incompetent or one of the children has power of attorney, you cannot force he/she to move or sell.

We tried in the midst of our Dad being in a Nursing Center to rehab after being released from the hospital. He checked himself out and moved back to his house.

There was absolutely nothing we could do.

We begged and suggested he at least move into a Retirement Community. He refused. Our Mother is with me - going on 4 years now. She has Lewy Body Dementia. I have burned out so many times.

I am trying to take care of myself better... the cortisol stress hormone seems to be my worst enemy these days. We even had his house inspected. It is a total mess and run down in need of repairs etc.

Still,he is still living there. Mom had lost so much weight and other symptoms were pointing to her being ill : long story short, she came to live with me as I took her to Doctors and finally got diagnosis of her condition. She is getting worse and they do not have long term care insurance - yet she does not qualify for Medicaid.

I also made her a promise that I'd never place her in a nursing home, as she had a fear of being placed in one. I am trying to find ways to cope and to help myself stay healthy. It is hard. Takes a lot of prayer and determination.

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You can do this!
by: Anonymous

Dear Dee,
You are right, you Will Burn Out. My brother and I did (after more than 2 years trying to keep mom at home). The sooner you get the ball rolling to find the right assisted living for your dad the sooner he will adjust to it.

Mom did not 'want' to go into assisted living (who does?) but when we laid out all the facts of money and abilities she saw the truth and agreed to go.

It took her a while and we had to move her 3 times in 3 months (one place raised her rent over 1000.00 a month-other place too big and she fell (A lot!) but she is lovingly cared for now and has been in the same place now for a couple of years.

You can do this, you will feel guilty, it may not be easy but 'this too shall pass'. I have found that our job's not done once our elder is living with help but it is better.

Let us know how it goes.
m-santa rosa ca

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Selfish
by: Anonymous

Please learn to stand up for yourself and put him in assisted living. He is just being selfish as most elderly men are.

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Dear Exhausted
by: kaypasa

Contact some of the assisted living homes in his area for information. Review it all with your siblings and, if you know his financial situation, narrow the choices down for him to just a couple.

Get all of the siblings together and make a visit, with him, to the facility. There will be a social worker there, and, if it's determined he cannot live on his own, and you all are unable to be present often enough, for his own safety, they will help to get him to move.

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