Ran away from Katrina, turned into the Only one of 3 Who is a Caregiver...

by Deborah
(Louisiana)

Shortly before Katrina, I decided to move back home...came home, watched my N.O. life flood and all of the sudden my mom had her first hospital visit in a while.


While I was glad (thankful) to be there to see that she needed help/emergency care, it has turned into me being the only caretaker. My mom is always so thankful to her sons when they offer to do anything for her, I feel that she takes advantage of my care for her, as it seems my brothers do too.

If it were not for me, she would have to first FIND someone to take her to the doctor, PAY them, FIND someone to shop for her, PAY them, FIND someone to cook for her, PAY them, etc., etc. I have my own problems, and am on Social Security Disability. Ever had to take someone to the doctor who needs a walker and you need a cane? Not easy.

I think my brothers take what I do for granted because, as someone else said, I needed a place to live. I came fully expecting to move to my own place and start MY life.

NOW, I have NO life except my mom. I'm grateful someone (me) is here that loves her to take care of her, but it can be very frustrating. When a possible emergency was looming (we were waiting to see if we would have to evacuate due to possible flooding situations), my mom was crying every 10 minutes and was on edge and seemed angry with me that I wasn't as upset as she was. I had made hotel reservations in case we had to leave, I helped her gather important papers, etc. - go "space bags" for clothing we just couldn't carry with us, as well as large duffel bags and garment bags to take with us...then, one of my brothers said he and the other brother would rent a truck, if evacuations were ordered, and take the most important pieces of furniture to store in a town/city close by.

After that, I heard her (in the same day) tell 2 different people how lucky she was to have THEM. Talk about being hurt! I started crying, when I overheard it the second time and when she asked why, I told her. She apologized, said she didn't think she said that and that the people she was talking to KNEW how lucky she was to have me, yada yada yada. It still stings.

Now, I have to work at being pleasant to her. I don't know how to get over the hurt. PLUS, she - for the last 5 years - has reminded me that when she dies I will have to pay my two brothers to buy their portion of the house. Nope, I have no life here and I can find a place for me, a retirement community for lower income folks (I'm almost 59) who need both physical and financial help. Gonna get the h*** outta dodge, as they say...start fresh as some ripe old age.

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Abdicate!
by: Anonymous

This sounds like a real nightmare for you and I'm sure that you have had all the thoughtful, caring, advice already!

I just want to say that you are doing an incredibly difficult job, but what you are doing is really a job and, if you need to, you are allowed to resign! It's not callous or selfish, if this is not working for you don't worry about what other people will say.

It sounds like there is equity in your Mums property.... use it to fund her care. You won't get a financial inheritance, but you and your brothers will make an equal "sacrifice" your mum will get the care she deserves and you can rebuild your life.... you all win! Remember that you do have choices!
Good luck!

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