Stressed Out Caregiver

by Sheri
(Manhattan Beach, CA)

Hi, I am going through a very difficult time. I moved back home in 2005 due to a chronic medical condition, and have been in poor health off and on since then. Fast forward 12 years, I still live here and the tables have turned. My parents are 78 and 79 and since about a year now, I have seen the decline of my parents mental faculties and they are declining almost at the same speed.

My Father has become more and more angrier and resentful as he gets older. He can't remember what day it is quite often, and forgets where his keys are, what he gets at the store, and he cannot retain information that we speak about for more than 20 to 30 minutes.

I've been used as his human punching bag for quite a while now, just like he did when I was an innocent child. He chooses to focus on my Mom's memory problems rather than to come out of denial and admit he has major issues also.

I finally got to the point where I had a private conversation with his GP ( We both have the same one) and she said that without being obvious, she will do some memory testing which is done around his age anyway.

My Mother is 79 and her mental decline has slowly progressed for the past few years. She forgets what she has watched on TV, I will say something to her and within 5 minutes she forgets what I tell her. Her hygiene is taking a
lower priority.

Her hair is long, grey and beautiful but she needs to get it trimmed and every time I offer to take her to my girl or offer to just go with her she says" maybe sometime". She only washes her hair maybe once a month if that.

Her and my Dad are getting all mixed up about their bills, where they have been paid or to, and it ends up with my Dad yelling at my Mom if she makes an error in checkbook. And also when my Mom is watching TV, she just has a blank look on her face, and once again does not have much memory of what were watching.

BTW I am 55 years old. My brother is 57, and is a retired Fireman who lives 20 minutes From us and I spoke with him about what is going on with our parents and his reply was "this happens when you get old" I knew right then to have no expectations of him of being any help, and if so it will be minimal.

So, to sum it up, I'm really stressed out, resentful towards my Dad for lashing out at me, and towards my brother for showing little concern about my parents decline.

I really need to find a support for caregivers. I not officially a caregiver but it's coming soon, and I'm scared.

Thank you for reading what I am going through. I hope someone who is going through something similar can share with me how they are getting through it.

Kind Regards,

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