Caring for a Parent
Is it still safe for Mom to live on her own? What to do about Dad's difficult behavior? How to manage incontinence, or problems with siblings and other family members? Discuss these topics and more in this online support group for adult children caring for a parent. Get tips, advice, and support for your parental caregiving questions or concerns. Connect with others who understand what you're going through.
Additional resources that may be helpful:
- Alzheimer's Info Center
- Memory Care Communities in U.S.
- Professional In-Home Caregivers
- Senior Money and Legal Resources
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What's New Today
1 day ago
Does anyone else feel guilty about setting caregiving boundaries? My father was hospitalized, then sent to a SNF for rehabilitation. His disposition and lack of patience has us three siblings doing shift-work, just to make sure staff meet his needs. (quickly). My mother shames everyone into going there daily, then visiting her to see what she needs. The stress is taking its toll: siblings fighting and we are all developing health problems. I pointed out to my mother that she was going to end-up burying her children, because of the stress of caregiving. Her response was: "That's what happens; it's not easy."
I have explored placement options for her and at the last minute, she smugly declined saying she was bringing my father back home and we can keep doing what we are already doing. I tried to get her to understand that we had to let staff do their job and that everyone was going there because that was what she wanted.... that is when she started giving me the silent treatment.
I know aging/later years is difficult, but I would think that watching your adult children sacrifice their health for your care would be devastating. I feel guilty for setting boundaries. I feel guilty their care causes me so much stress. I feel guilty when I speak-up and tell her that I am stressed-out. I feel guilty that I don't want to go to the nursing home everyday to overtake his care. I feel guilty that I felt defeated when she decided her/my father wanted to remain at home, rather than placement. I feel guilty that I don't have what it takes to just suck-it-up and let them live out their lives at home. I feel guilty that mentally, I have started packing my belongings with a plan of moving far, far away from them. I have detached from siblings, as they are not happy with my reluctance. Sorry: I have written on this forum when tears have been cascading down my face, when I feel as if I have successfully set boundaries and now when I am feeling guilty about the boundaries that I set.
1 day ago
I'm at my wits end. Here we go with my Father again with his back problems. He's taking day off work left and right. He can't even make a full work week. If he does, it's a miracle. He just assumes I'm gonna make calls, pick up after him and what not. I'm tired. He got angry with me last night when I told him that I can't take care of him anymore. Either the other daughter gets over there to help out, or I'm gonna have to explore putting him in assisted living. He refuses to go though. So I might have to either get his doctors to reason with him, or haul him into court which I don't want to do. He can not walk well anymore, and I understand wanting to stay in your home. But he refuses to understand that the home he lives in, has multiple staircases. He cannot do them anymore. The doctor told us he needs to go to Physical therapy to strengthen his back. He told me that Physical therapy won't help him. I'm getting resentful that everything falls on me! I work, take care of my own home and all, plus I am vision impaired and have my own health issues! I'm tired. I don't want to have another heart attack. I don't know what to do. Part of me wants to video how he acts with my IPhone, and text it to his doctors. Maybe they can reason with him. If not, I don't want to have to do it, but I might need to either have help come in to care for him which he won't have either, or like I stated, get him to realize, that he needs more than I can give him.
My husband has his own health issues and he can't reason with my Father either. I'm tired tired and I'm tired. When I'm home with my husband and kids, I turn off my house and my cell phone, just so I don't hear from him. When I have to make a call, I block out the call waiting. The other daughter's just livin' her life not even caring what goes on. However, she'll be the first one to tell ya what she thinks aught to be done.
2 days ago
I am a caregiver, along with husband, of my 94 y.o. mother. She is in a cottage we built for her next to our house. She is physically frail but making it. What I am writing about is her mental condition. She seems to be getting more forgetful every day. It is truly frightening to watch her lose words, forget people, events. I worry that she will one day not know who I am. It hasn't happened but it terrifies me to think that it might. Then what do I do? Also, she is beginning to skip pills. I give her a pill cup for evening and for morning. I have always been able to trust that she take them properly..... Any advice?
2 days ago
My MIL accuses my husband of stealing from her and has changed the locks and called the police on him over 5 times. Usually she enjoys when my children and I go over there and visit and she doesn't mention my husband. Today she started in accusing him so then I thought maybe she is having a medical problem. I don't even know how to get her to the doctor.
3 days ago
I seem to be on an island. My mother is 91 and fell, breaking a hip about a week ago. After surgery the surgeon told us that the bones were VERY fragile and that recovery/ rehab would be a slow and careful process. Since mom has always been extremely strong and independent my family has the idea that she'll be completely back to normal in a couple weeks. She was mentally slipping a bit before the fall and since surgery has been lucid only about half the time at best. She's very argumentative and even bit a nurse. Not at all the woman I've known as mom for 57 years. I think this has been very traumatic for mom and affected her mental state. My family thinks I'm the one who's mental state is in question.
4 days ago
Hello I'm 40 year old who found out in March that my mom has dementia. I always knew she was a little off but I noticed that she kept repeating things. She also is disabled and she thinks I'm supposed to drop everything and take care of her. I work two jobs and have 2 kids. I'm exhausted but at the same time I feel guilty. How does one balance all this, I'm so overwhelmed
6 days ago
So my Father just went back to work after being out for 8 months from having a back operation. Everything was all hunky dory till last week. He started with the "I can't do for myself" routine again. Everyday I come their to see him on my way home from work, it's a daily conversation. Pills, arthritis, the same questions over and over and over and over and over again. I have rheumatoid arthritis myself among other health issues. I'm sick of hearing when medications come on the television, "Why don't you ask your doctor about this. Their you go, ask him about taking that." I tell him time and time and time and time again. I can not take certain medications, because they counteract with my medicine. I can understand him being in cold, it's bad because I'm bad in cold weather. But today it's 60 plus outside and he's still complaining. I'm not sure if it's all just psychosomatic and he thinks he's in pain and what not. I'm getting sick and tired of it. Really bad sick and tired.
I juggle a husband, 3 stepkids, and it's getting to the point where I hate going over to see him. I told him time and time and time, "Do not eat beaf because it's bad for any arthritis." What's he do? Order a cheese steak and wonder why he's in a lot of pain. I'm tired. Tired of talking about pills, tired of talking about his AARP dental insurance, tired of it all. Mom's lucky, she's in Heaven and doesn't have to hear this crap.
9 days ago
I am a 20 year old female caring for my disabled mother. In 2015 my mom had an open colectomy and almost died due to Crohn's Disease and I left school so I could work full time and take care of her. She's had an extremely hard transition. She was extremely ill before that, but in denial. She was in the hospital for 4 months, her leg muscles atrophied and she has since regained >75% of her mobility. She still gets winded and can't walk long distances. This past November she had a heart attack and had triple bypass surgery. This set her back and she is extremely limited in what she can do. We currently live in a 3-floored townhouse which I maintain and clean (barely), plus I work full time and was recently denied a promotion because of my "persional issues" regarding my mom. Since my mom's heart surgery, we've done nothing but fight, argue, scream and cry at each other. Today it all came to a head and we hit rock bottom. My mom recently told me she didn't have the will to live anymore and didn't think it was worth it - that she was exhausted mentally and physically, which I understand. I don't know what else I can do. She can't live by herself, but I'm going crazy. I still have curfews because she's afraid to be alone, she won't let me go more than 30 minutes away, and unless I'm going to work or thsleep grocery store, I'm home. I feel guilty for all the feelings I'm having, but I'm angry. And resentful of my situation. I'm jealous of what few friends I have left because they're in school or going out or enjoying their life. And I hate my life. My mom doesn't trust anyone and doesn't want an aid to come in, and she's not healthy enough to move into a smaller house or whatever. I just don't know what to do. I work 40 hours a week and I'm late on all my bills as is. My tank is so empty, and I can't give her anymore because I have nothing to give. But that makes me selfish in her eyes.
An anonymous caregiver said...
10 days ago
When is it selfish to start thinking about yourself? I am 26 year old female, taking care of her mother. She had a tumor on her spine that has made walking almost impossible, and she is in a wheelchair. She also deals with constant nerve pain. She has bad incontenence problems. Despite all of this she actually takes pretty good care of herself. Sometimes she needs help in the bathroom. I do most of the cooking and cleaning. She cannot drive anymore, so I do all things needed outside the home. I take her to the doctor, but she makes her own appointments. There is nothing wrong with her mind. I don't think she is any where near the stage for a nursing home. The problem is I have been taking care of her for three years. I currently have no job, no friends, a mountain of student debt, and I am still single. My older sister died 5 years ago and my mother is single herself. There are no more family members left to assume responsibility. We live in a very small economically depressed area and jobs are hard to come by. I really need to move to a bigger city and start taking care of my own problems. I believe she is capable of taking care of herself with the help of a home help aid. But she refuses to get outside help. I know the day may come when she will need more help. I'm afraid if I don't get out of my small town and start making better money, I won't be able to afford to give her the care she needs. I thought about trying to take her with me, but the medical expenses will cost more in a bigger area. I can't afford that starting out on my own. I feel the only option right now is to consider leaving her and moving out on my own. If she gets and keeps a home health aid, I think she will be Okay for a year or two. But at the same time I feel this overwhelming guilt. What should I do? Am I being selfish? Should I consider moving out to secure a better financial future for the both of us? How much sacrifice is too much? I love my mother deeply and I just don't know what to do. Has any body else found themselves in a simular situation?
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