I Love my Elder Parents but the Stress of Caregiving is Really Taking it's Toll

by Kathryn
(Franklin, IN)

My parents have always been good hard working people who did the right things, I suppose.


We are now at the point where we all (my sister and I) just found out how destitute they are and really have few options, if any, really.

They do own outright their home which that is a good thing and since we began caring for them several months ago, we have been beating back the creditors that we did not know existed until we started answering their phone as we are now there most of time...I am working part time and my husband is gone most of the week in the oil fields 125 miles from here.

The creditors are nasty to say the least and looks like we have a good deal of work to do to

Care for my parents

Pay off their bills

Begin planning for the future...

as this is a very difficult situation to be in...I have read a number of stories on this site and it seems to me that we all have essentially the same issue or issues...what to do with Mom and Dad and how do we care for them without help or guidance. Kind of like "I know you don't about any of this, but do the best you can, with know knowledge or experienced help from anyone".

This seems like a one time experience in which I have ZERO knowledge of, that is doubly troubling since I really was not prepared nor do I want to do this caring and waiting on them hand and foot thing and field calls from creditors.

My sister and her husband know that I am alone most weeks as my husband is out of town and as they are close by I would think that they would want to "pitch in" from time to time but so far nothing, and as a matter of fact it seems they have chosen me as the primary and secondary and IF ASKED...should I say BEGGED to help out they will but almost to the point of doing me a FAVOR....did not see this coming as if I knew then what I know now I would have had a better position to bargain with her.

Has anyone else had this issue with the sister (or other sibling like a brother) being conveniently busy or out of touch? My husband says to just stop going over there to help them but that is not the answer as Mom is now walker bound and Dad is slow and clueless about food/kitchen/cleaning etc.

If anyone has any ideas I would be glad for some help..thanks!

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Please Call for Help
by: Anonymous

Please call the Agency on Aging they can put you in touch with help in your area.

My mother gets food stamps on a card and I take the card to the supermarket because she is housebound and I explained that to the manager.

They said they don't care who uses the card as long as you know the pin they give you it is okay.
Look at Federal and State programs.

A reverse mortgage might be a good thing, if you think your mom and dad might be against that, older people don't understand when you try to take their house. They want to leave something to their children.

If your parents take a lot of medication and they have a lot of bills check with Medicaid they may quality if they don't know a lot of assets.

If either of your parents were in the military check with the VA they may qualify for pension benefits.

I have had my brother take over for a while because my mother complains about everything we do for her.

She asked me to get her pants at the store the other day, I found the most reasonable ones 50% off $24.99, she bitched me out saying you didn't look on the clearance racks. I told her I did and they didn't have what she wanted, she is very very particular.

So, I buy 130.00 worth of pants and take them over for her to try them on. Oh that is kind of expensive she says to me, I said what planet are you living on mom. So I get defensive and tell you why don't you just order the $9.99 pants out of the catalogue you get. She said those don't fit exactly. Well I finally said take it or leave it.

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I love my Elder Parents...
by: Anonymous

You can't just forsake your parents as your husband suggested. My brother is not good about volunteering help either. My mom's care is all up to me.

However, if I ask, he will help. Like you, my issue is, why do I have to ask? But, ask I do and will continue.

I'm wondering if a reverse mortgage would help your parents financially? Have you looked into that? I'm in the US and we have that here, but don't know where you are.

I'd suggest also calling your Area Agency on Aging to see what help they may have to offer.

Good luck. Seems we all need it more than ever now.

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