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We are exhausted!

(15 Posts)
Pepperonipeteczar Sun 14-Jun-15 06:11:32

I have NC as this might out me and I will try and keep it breif.

DH cares for a family member, not immediate family, he isn't terminally ill and is quite independent but disabled and occasionally falls or injures himself or generally needs support so he is allocated about 35 hours a week care from social services (if that gives anyone an idea of the level of care required) he has required this care for nearly 20 years, DH mum has taken a back seat and left it all to DH, DH brother and his wife (no children or commitments) have not and will not help with this relative in any way, he has other people around yet the care has been put on me and DH.

I am heavily pregnant (due any day) and I have a toddler who has been quite poorly this week and not sleeping well, DH worked all week which resulted in me having to cancel important ante natal appointments as I couldn't take DS with a contagious illness. Family members gave us a wide birth as they didn't want to catch what DS has.

So last night DH was working a night shift and I had finally managed to get me and DS off to sleep around 1:00 when I got 2 missed calls and a voicemail from relative asking for me to come over as he had an issue at home, DH couldn't get out of work and nobody else was answering the phone, I explained I couldn't come as DS was in bed and I was home alone and it would have to wait, it wasn't a personal care issue he had damaged part of his house.

Sorry if you are still with me I'm nearly finished. So next week when I am due (and its DS birthday) DH parents, brother and sister and this relatives dad are all leaving the country for 10 days, leaving us in charge of the relative and I am terrified that something will happen to him while I am in labour, I have chosen a home birth in case of this so we aren't stuck at hospital but I feel like we really need and deserve a break.

AIBU to tell DH we need to either arrange alternate care for this relative or tell PIL they need to start taking responsibilty for him? Or do I sound like a diva and cruel for not showing the relative more compassion? Had about 12 hours sleep this week so I'm running on empty.

BugPlaster Sun 14-Jun-15 06:28:06

That would be completely more than fair and you should do exactly that. If it raises eyebrows or makes anyone uncomfortable remember you aren't responsible for their feelings, you are doing the right thing for you and your family. You are asking no more than it would have been reasonable for the PIL to offer, anyway.
Do it, be strong, feel better for it.

Chottie Sun 14-Jun-15 06:34:37

You are not being at all unreasonable. Your health and the health of your unborn child are your priority.

Please make other arrangements so at least you can relax have your baby, recover and enjoy being a family with your toddler and newborn. Do not feel at all guilty, you and your DH have been very supportive, but you now need to step back and let someone else take over.

Do not get guilt tripped by the family.

yearofthegoat Sun 14-Jun-15 06:39:05

You must step back from this now and the rest of the family must step up. Doing your fair share is one thing but it sounds as if you have been taken advantage of.

Can you discuss this with the relative's carers? They need to know that there will be no one for the relative to call. Alternative arrangements must be made. Once the family are back then they will be the first point of call.

Pepperonipeteczar Sun 14-Jun-15 06:41:44

The relative only has 8 hours a week from someone else, 10 off DH and then the rest of the hours sit unclaimed. I dont get anything as I wanted the option to say no as he was doing innapropriate things every time I went round alone and refused to stop.

Pepperonipeteczar Sun 14-Jun-15 06:43:01

I have said a few times an agency needs to step in but it's MIL that arranges all this and she has still not done it, we have nothing to do with the financial side of it all, just the actual care. DH does a lot more than 10 hours also.

GirlsWhoWearGlasses Sun 14-Jun-15 06:53:44

Reading your second last post, I'm wondering if this should be about more than just the short term around the birth. It's not ok for you to be treated like that.

NannaFaye Sun 14-Jun-15 06:57:00

You poor thing! Your situation is so heartbreaking! Have you given any thought to hiring someone to sit with your relative part time? Perhaps the other sibling and mother and the relative himself could help fund the payment. I am in the US so I am not aware of your systems of care for persons with handicaps such as social security, etc.
Sometimes people will become dependent on one person and will be unaware of the stress it is causing. Maybe it is time to sit down and have a frank, open discussion with him. You did say he is independent and has others around.
Another thing you can do is invite everyone who is in this person's circle of family or friends over for tea or a pot luck, and openly and honestly discuss how he is going to be cared for going forward as you and your husband can no longer shoulder the burden alone.
If you cant' have them over, write to each one. Ask them to commit to one or two days a week, or more if they can.
And if it comes down to it, tell this loved one that you cannot come for any reason but an emergency. You might also have him get one of the emergency assistance call buttons that is worn around the neck and has someone who answers when called. They can send help if needed or contact someone on the person's responder list of names.
Last choice would be to have him look into an assisted living facility.

Saying no can be so hard. It is something we don't ever want to say to someone who needs attention. I can assure you that there are others who will do it if you stop. Who would do it if you moved to another city?

Congratulations on the new addition to your family. May your child be blessed with good health and happiness always.

Pepperonipeteczar Sun 14-Jun-15 08:09:52

Thank you for kind posts and there are some good ideas, today I am looking for agencies myself and will present MIL with the list of agencies and ask her to give them a call to get care arranged before her Holiday, the holiday was only booked 2 months ago so she knew the position she was leaving us in and still chose to go. I just feel like this situation is really unfair

PeppermintInfusion Sun 14-Jun-15 08:35:03

Have a look at the mencap site they have a look of info on arranging care and I think they can also facilitate discussions/provide advice.

Littlef00t Sun 14-Jun-15 08:40:19

I assumed at first your DH was doing additional hours on top of the 35 allocated. As that's not the case and these are funded hours, I seriously recommend getting your DH on board about stopping them altogether and just offering additional ad hoc care when it suits you. He's not looking after his own family adequately, you need him more than his relative does.

If the hours have gone unclaimed in the past have these been saved up? If there's a stash of hours available, make it non negotiable that these are to be used while you have a newborn and DH is simply unavailable.

Balaboosta Sun 14-Jun-15 09:23:22

My symapthy OP this is not a good situation for you. But I am very conecerned that you are having a home birth because of this. You should choose the type of birth that is best for you and the baby, not to fit round relAtives care needs.

CombineBananaFister Sun 14-Jun-15 09:34:04

Crikey, know wonder you're bloody knackered. I think it's time for you and DH to step back as you've done your bit and let others plug the gaps. Maybe as a family decide a better care plan and where you are willing to do bits but be firm and don't pick up all the slack - it is on their selfish heads not yours.

ChuffinAda Sun 14-Jun-15 09:37:54

Ring social services. If they're not using the money for carers it needs paying back. Also tell social services you can't Continue your caring role due to impending arrival

Honu Sun 14-Jun-15 10:14:31

SHOUT! I care for my disabled DH and, six months in when I was on my knees, this was the advice given by the nurse at the surgery. She said that as long as you don't complain no-one takes any notice. Five years later we have got all daily care totally sorted.

Is your relative self-funding or having direct payments? We found that, because we live rurally, no private agency would come out this far. However, the main provider to your council is obligated to fulfil the care plan designated by social services. Although we are self-funding (bye-bye our retirement savings) our care is arranged by SS whom we pay since this is the only way we can get action.

Also, since April 2015, the care plan must give equal weight to the needs of the carer as to the needs of the disabled person. We now have exactly the right plan for us and, when the care agency falls down, we complain - every time! Believe me, this works.


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