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Parental Obligations

(3 Posts)
AlderTree Fri 03-Jun-11 18:44:02

Not sure if that is the best title or if this is quite the right place to post other than that my family fits this thread.

One of my parents is currently in hospital awaiting surgery. The other parent is happily married to a step parent and has been so since I was very small. The married parent/step parent brought me up. The question is where should my loyalties lie regarding their eventual aging and care. Especially regrading the parent patient who does have a partner, but they are not married. When the 'parent patient was ill previously it was me at the bedside though for reasons relating to my own immediate family and distance I could not run around sorting things and wasn't ever asked to. This time the partner has done the running around and I'm not sure what my daughterly duties should be and whether I should feel put out that I haven;t been asked to do anything.

Any thought wise step parents? Thank you

mdoodledoo Sun 05-Jun-11 22:41:35

I'm not sure if your post hasn't had any replies because it's a bit complicated to understand - I had to read it twice.

I can empathise with your situation a bit because I feel an obligation to both parents, and my StepDad (I don't have StepMum). For me, that obligation extends to my StepGrandparents too and I visited almost every day during a long end of life stay in hospital when my StepGrandma was taken ill a number of years ago. I don't have a massive distance challenge to overcome though - a 20-30min drive each way.

I'm a 'people pleaser' so maybe that's why - but for me, there's a family tie and therefore a family obligation which is willingly fulfilled. My DP struggles with my approach to this stuff and gets frustrated that I feel a strong obligation to anybody at all - so I do appreciate there are many different perspectives on this.

If you don't have strong or meaningful relationships with any of the people involved then the situation could be different - but I don't get that impression from your post.

Sorry if I've misunderstood your OP and gone off on the wrong track!

AlderTree Tue 07-Jun-11 19:55:27

mdoodledoo you understand correctly. Maybe I was a little confusing in what I wrote. Didn't mean to be but divorced/step familes are complicated.

In a standard family the partner of the ill person deals with it. If the life partner is no longer there I suppose the children do - usually the eldest or nearest I guess.

I would like to read how other's have handled this. As a child all my friends always had one mum and one dad in the same house. I had no one to work out these thoughts with and as we moved alot friendships were not lasting.

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