AIBU To expect my sisters to help in caring for my father?(11 Posts)
My father lives with us (DH & DC) suffers from poor health but tries to maintain his independence as much as he can and we encourage him to, we need some work undertaking on the house, mainly the hall, stairs and landing but I'm worried about my fathers safety during this time. I have hinted (and have on occasions even out rightly stated my concerns) to my 3 sisters and other family that it would be helpful if they could take dad out for the day so that we can get some of the work completed but no offers of assistance have been made. I know that in having my father live with us was a decision we made (and gladly) but can't help feeling that family feels that this thus negates them from any responsibility in supporting my father, but am I being unfair?
No I do not feel you are being unfair at all.
You said you have hinted. Could you be more direct but without being accusing? State what you need.
For example: " I am telephoning to ask you all to make a rota to take turns to look after Dad while we have this work done."
Do they resent you by any chance? Did your father favour you?
No you're not BU but I wouldn't hold my breath. My Dm often complained that her brothers did nothing to help their mum. She raised it a few times and only one had the excuse of living a couple of hundred miles away. The others were round the corner like she was. In fact it would be me doing am 800 mile round trip to help in many cases (never complained as I loved my GM). My DM would raise that point but it never helped. Some people are just selfish like that and will come up with all sorts of excuses.
Tell them directly the dates your father needs to spend with them. They probably won't step up but at least you and he will know that.
Hmm. Not sure.
My DSis insisted on caring for DM herself quite a way past the stage when DM really could have used some outside help. Then things would get tricky or DSis (understandably) would get tired, then I'd get guilt-tripped into taking over for a while at no notice, often meaning time off work with no notice.
Left to me I would have asked DM to think about having a cleaner and carers in at an earlier stage, or maybe even a warden-supervised type flat. So I'm a bit on the fence.
And possibly about to be flamed for being a heartless cow. Which was just how it was back then, too.
I think YABU, in the nicest possible way. You made the decision to have your DF live with you, but actually no-one owes any support. If you can't cope then you have to look at outside agencies.
I can sympathise. My mum has Alzheimers. It falls to me (being the child living the nearest distance away) to care for her on a daily basis. She is adamant at this point that she is not going into a care home. When we went on a weekend break recently - the first break in 4 years ( I have 4 children under 15) - I asked my brother to look in on her and make sure she was ok. (I stocked up on food for her before we went). Brother presented her with a bill for £200 petrol money for the weekend he called in - twice!). He lives less than 10 miles away. That caused a great deal of problems within the family. It isn't easy and I have the utmost sympathy for you OP
Coldtoeswarmheart you make a good point about how you would have done things differently by setting up outside help so feel it is unfair if you are made to feel guilty.
DIdabdoo, is there any possibility that you have taken on too much, and should get outside help?
Fluffy I think it must be very difficult for you too, have you taken on more than you
can with all your children under 15? Your brother sounds an absolute brat/monster actually, Fluffy.
If your family won't step up you have some other options. Day club or respite care would work. Don't count on people who've made it clear they won't step up.
It really does depend on the situation.
My mum and two of her sisters were trying to get their dad more help. Their other sister kept blocking al attempts. They all cared for him together. The sister that was trying to stop them involving anyone else would switch her gone off at night. So if grandad fell over and pressed his alarm it would fall to the other sisters to get up and go round.
In the end he was admitted to hospital and they decided he needed to go into a home. Which has caused problems with the other sister. Had she have moved him in with her, we wouldn't have helped much. Because we felt he need more care than she could give.
Does your father have any money of his own?
This is a problem that can grow over time as needs increase and if you can, find a respite service for those days when you want to do things in the house or just need a day of space.
There are some day centres around for older people and some nursing homes offer day respite. It all depends on where you are as to whats available. Your local council may also be able to put you in touch with local care agencies. I'm in the North West and the council pay respite carers £8/ hour.
Paying for support can be a bit eye watering to start with but try not to compare no cost vs cost. Instead think its a bit of respite cost vs supported accomodation or nursing home.
Family dynamics are so complex. Your siblings may just be busy in their lives and subconciously denying your DF is getting older. Some people just don't cope with caring. This is where if he has any money of his own its any inheritance that gets used to provide any extra care and direct support needs.
If moneys are tied up then maybe a contract agreement with your siblings could be a way forward (and bring the whole topic of care into their consciousness), that you keep record of additional care related costs and this bill is settled with interest before the rest of his estate is settled.
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