I Ask For A Break For One Day And....

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Suzanna1969, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. Suzanna1969

    Suzanna1969 Registered User

    Mar 28, 2015
    Today was the day that my Dad (88, Vascular Parkinsonism) was supposed to have his work reunion lunch.

    I am currently doing a 6 week life drawing class which happens to be on a Wednesday.

    My brother agreed to take today off work so that he could take Dad to his reunion, then take Mum to lunch at a nice pub I usually take her to on these occasions.

    So off I went to art class thinking all was well.

    Bruv got to parents' early which was a good idea as Mum often faffs around because of her Dementia. He then left early and got to the reunion venue just before 12 and walked Dad in as agreed. They waited until about 12.10. Then they assumed they had got the day wrong and left. Bruv took them both for lunch at the nice pub I usually take her to.

    Dad got a call this evening from one of his ex work colleagues asking if he was ok as they had missed him at the lunch.

    They must have arrived a couple of minutes after Bruv drov off.

    If I had done the run as usual I would have got there about 12.15 so he wasn't the first one there and waited until 12.30 at least.

    But because I chose to do my art class my Dad missed out on his reunion and then worried about the cost of the extra meal in the more expensive pub. He didn't like the puff pastry in his chicken pie either!

    And Mum is the one with Dementia!

    I feel selfish, exasperated, resentful, depressed and just so angry about everything. Bruv did his best but he didn't do what I would have done and so we have this missed opportunity. I don't regret doing my art class but I am in conflict about what happened because I did it. And I know it will only get worse.
  2. nae sporran

    nae sporran Volunteer Host

    Oct 29, 2014
    That was unfortunate to say the least, but I would not beat yourself up Suzanna. You might want to beat up your brother for being impatient, but it sounds like he made a genuine mistake. If it were me I would just put it down to experience and hope your brother is more careful next time.
    On a positive note your dad's colleagues obviously still care enough to check he was ok and sometimes you do need to get a bit of time to yourself in order to be a better carer so I would not give up the art class. All the best, Rob
  3. Adcat

    Adcat Registered User

    Jun 15, 2014
    Hi Suzanne,
    I think Nae sporran has given you sound advice. I just wanted to say that I totally understand your frustrations though. I have two older siblings. Neither of whom I could or indeed would ask for help. Pit it down to experience and don't give up those classes x
  4. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    Is it really such a big deal? It's unfortunate but we all make mistakes, and life goes on regardless. It isn't your fault that you had other things to do, and it isn't your brother's fault for giving up too easily. These things happen. Chalk them up to experience. There really is no reason to feel selfish, and anger won't help the situation. In fact, if you berate your brother too much he might not want to help you next time. So thank him very much for his help and move on.
  5. Suzanna1969

    Suzanna1969 Registered User

    Mar 28, 2015
    I would never berate my brother, that's why I chose to rant a bit on here. He is my rock and, having read on here about other's experiences with their siblings, I know I am lucky in so many ways. But my brother lacks common sense in certain areas and it drives me barmy!

    Things like today make me think that I can't delegate the simplest thing. Thing is, Dad only has a reunion every 2 months and, at nearly 89, that's a big deal as each one could well be the last.

    It makes me very fearful for what will happen when things deteriorate further or we lose one of them as that will be a real game changer and I will need more support from my brother as my Dad will refuse outside carer help.
  6. CJinUSA

    CJinUSA Registered User

    Jan 20, 2014
    eastern USA
    Aw. I can see why you are upset, but this could happen to anyone. I wonder if you could get one of your father's friends (or his friend and child) to come and pick him up one time, so your brother could just be responsible for your mother.

    You need your own outlets. If something arises on a day you've planned to be away, that's not your fault, and you know how it is . . . things happen. Brava for you for having an art class and for your brother for stepping up to the plate.
  7. Mrsbusy

    Mrsbusy Registered User

    Aug 15, 2015
    I understand your frustration but like everyone else in this world you can only do your best. Your brother can only do his best too, which he did. Had he been my brother I would have telephoned, asked what to do etc .....

    Instead of worrying about your dad missing a chance of his reunion why not be glad about how many reunions he has managed to attend, and instead he didn't get returned home for another boring day, he got time spent having a meal and quality time with his son.

    Don't stress about things you can't change and nobody was hurt by the changes made, give your brother a hug as mine is useless!
  8. cragmaid

    cragmaid Registered User

    Oct 18, 2010
    North East England
    Could you not ask one of Dad's colleagues to collect him next time? Brother did his best, but he hasn't learned the ways of the force ( caring) yet....and he won't if you don't let him try. Dad still got out for a while and you managed your class as well.

    You have to learn to let go of the small stuff, otherwise you won't have room for the big things when they come around.
  9. whileaway

    whileaway Registered User

    Dec 11, 2015
    I sympathize, and would love to see your drawings, but have a suggestion too.

    I feel your exasperation and stress! But you are doing beautifully in all your roles, I just wonder if your need another way of dealing with this pressure. https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/mindfulness-wellbeing-performance I have enjoyed these free classes, very much. This one on Mindfulness I have looked forward to especially. It is without any strings attached, just sign to the course (it began last week) listen to the videos, do the exercises, and meet a host of fellow learners- if you want to- with their own understandings of calming stress.
  10. Quilty

    Quilty Registered User

    Aug 28, 2014
    I think the clue is in "I cant delegate anything". If you ask someone else to do something you need to accept that it might not be done the way you want it done. Your brother used his judgement and while you might think it was flawed, he had a nice lunch with your parents while you went to your class.

    You need to allow your brother to do his bit. My sister has seen my mum 3 times in 12 months even though she is in a care home 10 minutes walk from her house and she does not work. If you ever need the help of carers they are sure to do things differently to what you want or expect. In these situations you need to step back and look at the bigger picture. Other people means compromise.

    Would you like your brother to expect you to do anything his way? :eek:

    Keep going to your class and handover responsibility for everything that day. You deserve to be a bit more selfish!
  11. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    I think you are really disappointed because your Dad was let down for a one-off difficult to replicate event that you knew he was looking forward to so much. I get that. I've been in that situation with my Ma when someone else briefly stepped in so I really do understand.
    Trouble is you can't change it so you have to let it go and my guess is that you will do that, you do so much else for you parents that they would be the last people to think that you had 'slipped up' or 'taken your eye off the ball'. Of course you didn't.

    I do agree with others though to try not to let it get to you so much that you stop your brother helping out and doing his bit however small, you need all the breaks you can get!

    Take care and be gentle with yourself x
  12. Suzanna1969

    Suzanna1969 Registered User

    Mar 28, 2015
    Thanks everyone. Fizzie you are spot on, I know how much Dad enjoys these reunions. Most of his friends have died in recent years and he so misses company. Mum can't have a conversation anymore. They live in a village outside the town and we couldn't ask anyone to pick him up. Bruv was out of credit on his phone (seriously WHO has Pay As You Go these days?!) and the top up service was temporarily unavailable so he couldn't ring me. They must have missed the first arrivals by minutes. It was like a comedy of errors. And I'd talked Bruv through everything step by step thinking I had covered all eventualities!

    And Dad didn't enjoy the meal in the other pub, he has very simple tastes and also hates spending money. His reunion meal would have been very cheap, the other pub is a bit more gastro. Mum enjoys the food there as do I which is why we go. I really don't know why they didn't just stay in the first pub to eat. Obviously then they would have met up ok with everyone! Argh!!!

    And it does seem that whenever I relinquish control something goes wrong. Last year I was in London overnight and Bruv had to take the cat to the vet as an emergency. It was half an hour before opening time so he got the out of hours vet who was unfamiliar with our cat. I'd switched my phone off for the theatre the night before and forgot to turn it on again. If Bruv had been able to get hold of me I could have suggested the treatment given the time before. As it was the out of hours vet said it was best to put the cat down and Bruv followed his advice. My cats are my babies so I was devastated. I shall never forgive myself for not being there, we might still have him with us if I had been.

    I know it's no good dwelling on these things but it's hard not to, especially when things go wrong when they shouldn't.

    Hey ho. On the plus side, I got chatted up TWICE in town today, got an AMAZING bargain handbag and my hair, which was misbehaving last week, is suddenly and inexplicably looking AWESOME!

    Oh and next life drawing class we will be getting a MALE model! :D
  13. whileaway

    whileaway Registered User

    Dec 11, 2015
    You seem to be just fine!

    You are lucky to be born You! Attractive and competent and energetic. I was ever a bit of a "gawd 'elp us", from birth, so , am glad you forgive Bruv, because I always mess things up and am confused. I wish I was more like You, and blessings also to your compassionate nature, that is so sorrowful for your Dad's missed fun.
  14. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    Bruv's an idiot lol! I have to agree after hearing all that!!!! I too would have had trouble forgiving the cat debacle! I do like the positives and I do hope you enjoy the next life drawing particularly although he may not be Adonis, I shall look forward to the report!!!!!!!!!
  15. Suzanna1969

    Suzanna1969 Registered User

    Mar 28, 2015
    My expectations are not high I have to say. I am anticipating a 'last chicken in the shop' situation. Promise I won't post a pic of my efforts!
  16. Suzanna1969

    Suzanna1969 Registered User

    Mar 28, 2015
    Bless you, that's really cheered me up thank you Whileaway.

    Trust me I do have my 'Gawd 'Elp Us!' moments in bucketloads...

    But at least now when I get them I can curl up in the foetal position and stroke my Kate Spade handbag for comfort!

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