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Looking after brother while mums away

(178 Posts)
PeekabooISeeYou Sun 04-Sep-16 10:12:16

My mum lives 50 miles away from me with my brother (we're twins, 25).

My brother has depression and anxiety, and he never leaves the house, spending most of his days in bed on his PlayStation.

Since moving in with my now husband whenever DM goes on holiday I've moved in with DB and their two cats, too look after the cats DB says they're not his cats so not his responsibility and keep an eye on my brother. This year however I have my DD, 14 months, who goes to nursery nearby and also a cat of my own so I don't really want to be moving in with my DB.

So he's coming to me as of tomorrow. My mums booked a pet sitter for her cats and my brothers moving in with me for two weeks. Train tickets are booked.

I'm dreading it. We live in a two bed flat, so we're going to have to move DD into our room so DB has somewhere to sleep, so there's going to be 3 of us in one room plus the cat.

He's a fussy eater and I know he'll moan about food anyway because I don't make the same things my mum does - due to her work she makes quick convience foods like pizza, fish fingers etc whereas I work 3 days, and DH 4 so we do a lot of home cooking; lasagne, spaghetti bolognese, shepherds pie etc. DB won't cook for himself and needs to eat on the tablets he's on or he'll be really ill.

He won't help round the house either, or look after DD, or even offer to walk her to nursery (10minute walk away) so I can have a lie-in.

Last time my DM dragged him for a visit he complained that our 32in TV was too small for him to play his games on.

I've booked a few days off work in the first week, and DH has changed his work hours for the second week but I'm not sure why we bothered because he'll likely sit in our living room all day, and complain. If we invite him out he'll say he's not interested in doing whatever it is we're doing.

I don't want him to come. I'm doing it because my DM will relax on her holiday knowing my DB is being looked after and kept an eye on.

Help me get through the next two weeks please?

DerekSprechenZeDick Sun 04-Sep-16 10:13:43

Say no, you're 25.

Let him fend for himself

hesterton Sun 04-Sep-16 10:16:18

Why are you colluding with the infantalisation of your twin? This is highly unfair on both of you. How can he get to the point where he's been an adult for 7 years and can't look after himself, even with depression?

Trifleorbust Sun 04-Sep-16 10:16:59

This is sheer enabling. Your brother is an adult and can take care of himself unless he has a serious mental health issue, surely?

PeekabooISeeYou Sun 04-Sep-16 10:18:39

hesterton because DM likes to baby him; makes his meals for him, cleans for him, sure she'd wipe his ass for him if he asked.

I've agreed to it now but think next year I might just book the same fortnight away with my own family to save my sanity.

Soubriquet Sun 04-Sep-16 10:18:59

He is 25 fucking years old!!!!

No way! Make him stand on his own two feet

Would you mother do this with you? Or is it just her baby boy that needs infantilising?

Trifleorbust Sun 04-Sep-16 10:20:03

Not too late to change your mind. If you don't think he needs care, and you don't want him staying, just tell them. This is a piss-taking situation and you are not being unreasonable to put a stop to it now.

notaflyingmonkey Sun 04-Sep-16 10:20:59

I think you can make changes this year as well by telling him some ground rules for staying with you that he needs to abide by. After all, he is the same age as you!

Soubriquet Sun 04-Sep-16 10:20:59

If you can't change your mind, don't look after him at yours. Make him do it himself

He can't moan about the food then if he has to cook it himself

God help any woman who ends up with him

AliceInUnderpants Sun 04-Sep-16 10:21:05

Are you sure that his issue is just depression and anxiety? He seems fairly low functioning for that.

PeekabooISeeYou Sun 04-Sep-16 10:21:23

Soubriquet She wouldn't need to do this for me because I've lived with my DH for 5 years, I'm quite self sufficient and can manage to look after myself, DD and the cat on the two occasions DH has been away in the past.

LagunaBubbles Sun 04-Sep-16 10:21:38

Complete madness. If your Mum wants to treat your DB like a child that's her choice but doesn't need to be yours. If his depression is so severe he can't look after himself then he needs specialised psychiatric help. But I'm a big dubious about that.

NavyandWhite Sun 04-Sep-16 10:21:46

Sounds horrendous.

25?!? Can you speak to your mum and say you can have him for a week but no longer?

anyname123 Sun 04-Sep-16 10:21:59

I'd probably do it this ti.e, for the sake of your DM having a lovely holiday. But I'd be meeting up with her in the weeks following her return to explain that you won't be doing this again, that she is unfortunately enabling his shocking behaviour etc etc. It sounds more like a case of refusing to grow up, than crippling depression.

Soubriquet Sun 04-Sep-16 10:22:34

I get she doesn't need to, but if the situation was reversed and it was you at home, would she do it?

Or would she say your an adult now. It's time to grow up?

potoftea Sun 04-Sep-16 10:23:10

I think at this stage you just have to suck it up for the next two weeks, you are doing this for your mother and that's lovely of you, even though you are heading for a horrible fortnight.
However, this isn't sustainable long-term, you have other commitments now and its time to discuss future holidays with your mother. Is she planning on providing this level of care until she dies! And after that even, how will he cope without her?
Its time for a frank discussion about his needs, his future and what you are willing to offer.

Blueshoessingloose Sun 04-Sep-16 10:24:33

He's an adult, your mother is making him sick by infantalising him. No wonder he's depressed when he has no job, no independence, no dignity, no self respect, no worth as a person and no prospects if he continues as he is.

Depression does not make you as incompetent as a five year old. Behaving like a spoilt five year old and having to interact with the world as one in an adult males body will cause lots of psychological and emotional problems.

Your brother needs to be forced to live in the adult world before it's too late. He will continue to regress if he carries on like this. Your mother and him are feeding each others dependencies, help him to escape by all means but don't indulge either of them. They have a toxic relationship, until he realises that and understands he needs to escape, he will forever be 'depressed' because of his environment and self.

Don't babysit him.

phillipp Sun 04-Sep-16 10:24:59

Whatever you decide about this year, make sure you make clear you will not be doing this again.

If he is really so I'll he can not be left alone, then your mother needs additional outside help from professionals.

Not you.

The other option is that he is making up or exaggerating his illness so your mum keeps treating him like a baby. In which case, she and your dbro are creating the problem and they need to sort out the consequences of it

MoreCoffeeNow Sun 04-Sep-16 10:25:08

Next year offer to have the cats instead.

PeekabooISeeYou Sun 04-Sep-16 10:25:26

AliceinUnderpants my mums babied him, never expected him to do things himself. He can do it when forced too.

LagunaBubbles Sun 04-Sep-16 10:26:05

Phillip that crossed my mind to.

happypoobum Sun 04-Sep-16 10:29:03

Dear Lord No, I would not do this.

Tell DM you can't have the time off now or something.

If the issue was that his depression was at a level where he might harm himself whilst DM was away, I would be far more sympathetic. But from what you have posted, it's nothing to do with that, it's just that he is a spoilt little mummys boy?

Arkhamasylum Sun 04-Sep-16 10:29:44

This forum is probably full of people who suffer from anxiety and / or depression. Unless it's a clinical necessity, I doubt many of them are being cared for as if they're children.

Your mother is enabling him. You don't need to. If he can't feed himself, he should have professional care. However, if he's just using this 'he'll be really ill if he doesn't eat with the tablets he's on' thing to blackmail your mother (and you) to run around after him, he sounds like he needs a boot up the arse. It's called learned helplessness. Maybe looking after himself for two weeks will do it.

Sitting in a room with a PlayStation all day and doing nothing for himself is going to be doing his health no good at all. If he's finding things difficult, he needs help but this is the wrong kind of help.

Kenduskeag Sun 04-Sep-16 10:35:05

Does she want you to change his nappies and spoonfeed him too?

He can sort himself out. Unless he has a debilitating, chronic disability he does not need this level of care.

DerekSprechenZeDick Sun 04-Sep-16 10:35:37

Just think, when your parents aren't capable to look after him anymore due to age or illness what happens?

He moves in with you. That's what happens if you don't tell them no now.

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