What do YOU OWE to your parents?

by Beyond Reason
(Tulsa, OK)

Dear Caregiver Group: I've sat on the sidelines for too long and simply just read others stories and comments from others but today I'm going to put it to you straight.


If your Mother and Father raised you, put a roof over your head, food in your mouth, clothes on your back and gave you care when you were sick/ill then YOU OWE THEM SOMETHING!!!

I read the long string of barbed comments flying back and forth about the name calling and mudslinging relating to what income bracket you happen to be in and how you think your Mother or Father should be treated when they are old and gray and too frail to take care of themselves any longer.

Shame on people for making this about some sort of CLASS WAR! It is about HUMAN BEINGS AND COMPASSION PEOPLE!!! COMPASSION FOR YOUR MOM OR DAD WHO BROUGHT YOU INTO THIS WORLD!!!!
I'm so saddened by the lack of humanity displayed by some of these folks who call themselves a daughter/son.

A society is judged on how they treat the very poor and their elderly. Lets not lost sight of that simple fact folks.

If your Mom or Dad was unkind and abusive to you then I can fully appreciate your lack of involvement with their care when they get old.

But, if they were a decent provider and showed you kindness, understanding, love, compassion, unconditional love, then you need to be INVOLVED! Did you ever stop once and think what will happen to you when you get old and gray someday? Are your children going to take care of you? What kind of a parent have you been? Do you show your own children love and affection and the same kind of unconditional love your parents showed you growing up?

Today, men and women or so all consumed with work and earning that living so they can live in the nice, big house, drive the latest model SUV, and be donned in the latest fashion that they lose sight of the most important reason for their existence!

Being a good role model for your children and showing them to respect their elders is very important but sadly forgotten these days! Being the Chosen One is not always a picnic but someone needs to step up to the plate and be your parents advocate and voice when they can no longer be heard.

Lets be there for one another on this forum and lets give positive feedback and not attack one another for our obvious differences of opinions.

And remember that someday your Mom or Dad will not be there to take care of or go visit at the "home" and then you will be forced to deal with your demons if you chose to neglect your duties as a loving daughter or son. Talking to a headstone in a cemetery is an empty, hollow feeling and I know because I've been there.

Love your parents and show them the respect and dignity that they deserve. They need you.

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Dear Beyond Reason
by: Anonymous

Can you tell us exactly what your situation is or was in your own caregiving experience?

Did you care for both or one parent? How long were you doing it? Many months or many years? Did you have help from siblings or outside the home? Did you move into your parents home or have them move into yours? How much care did they require?

Did they have illness, disease or mental, emotional or physical problems? Were you with them on a daily basis and responsible for all their needs? Did you financial difficulties? Were you employed, raising your own children, keeping your own house and maintaining another residence at the same time?

Did you lose anything in the process like a relationship, a job or a home? Did it cause you hardship on a daily basis and yet you persevered because of your beliefs?

I'm not criticizing your perspective, I'm just curious to know how you maintained this perspective during your own caregiving role.

Maybe if people knew how hard your situation was for you, they could relate better and be inspired by your response.

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Bad statistics
by: Anonymous

"95% of us were abused, neglected or ignored". Bad statistics to me--far more likely is that most of us received "average" parenting (a mix of positive and negative) with a small minority experiencing bad parenting and a small minority experiencing great parenting.

I'm not saying this to judge anyone but simply to state what the experts have stated. Ultimately, when we become adults, we need to make peace with our childhood and get over our resentments and anger towards our parents.

It is also helpful to remember that each of us has our own negative traits too.

Ultimately, the kind of parenting one received isn't really relevant to whether our parent "deserves" our help or not.

Those who consistently open up their hearts to do altruistic activities in society do not look upon whether a certain person is "worthy" or "unworthy". There are scores of addicted, homeless, mentally ill, and other people in our society whose behaviors and personalities are negative yet they are still human beings of worth and dignity who need help.

Our elderly parents need our help. Please open up your heart a little bit. If not for your parent's sake, at least to help your sibling. If you cannot bring yourself to do something concrete for your parent, then at least offer some financial assistance or try to give your sibling some emotional support or help with insurance problems or other behind-the-scenes help.

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Where's the Compassion?
by: Brianna

I agree 100% with everything you stated! You are so very right about treating our parents with respect and love especially if they were a good parent. It sounds like the previous two posts had terrible upbringings and that is truly sad.

If I read your statement right, didn't you say you understood if people weren't involved if they didn't have good parents (abusive)? So really I'm not understanding where all this hate is coming from about your post. You said what many of us would like to say and I'm glad for it.

You Rock! God bless all caregivers tonight!

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I wasn't abused but...
by: Anonymous

My mother and father raised me very well and gave me a few extras in life. But, I have been my mom's caretaker for I'd say at least 7 years. It has been a gradual care taking role and took me awhile to realize I was a caretaker.

But, as my mom gets worse, she wants more and more of my time and isn't satisfied with me providing assistance for her, she thinks I should do it all. When I give her what she wants, she wants more.

She complains to my out of state siblings that I don't call or come over enough. And maybe I don't, but when you are told that know matter what you do it isn't enough you quit coming around. When I do go over, I dread it because I don't want to hear the put down she has for me.

My siblings come once a year if I am lucky and I would really like for them to do more of the hands on, which means they need to come more. I do feel guilt, but I want out.

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Robbed Blind!
by: Anonymous

Robbed blind being the eldest of four I can relate, so you don't know it all!
The rest of your comment makes no sense whatsoever!

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BRAVO
by: Anonymous

I say, BRAVO, BRAVO, BRAVO!!

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The Dark Side
by: Anonymous

Apparently you weren't beaten, neglected, and treated like you were a burden to your parents.

You must be very lucky,

Enough Said!

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Really?
by: Anonymous

One of your statements were that we shouldn't attack each other, but the majority of your blog was an attack on people who are venting their feelings.

Believe it or not, most of those of us taking care of elderly parents were not raised by loving, kind people. I would wager that 95% of us were abused, neglected or ignored.

From your writing, I doubt that you can relate to how it feels to have your youth taken from you and then have your mid-life stolen, too. That leaves most of us with nothing and no hope for the future.

By the time the nightmare ends, our lives are changed forever. We lose all of that precious time and have become so isolated and alone that we don't know how to rebuild our lives or what's left of them. The last thing that these people need is one more person judging and criticizing every word they write.

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