Sister not doing it for herself

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by northumbrian_k, Dec 4, 2019.

  1. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    897
    Male
    Newcastle
    One of the staff at her care home asked if my wife had a winter coat as her sister had been there wanting to take her out – I wouldn’t have done as it was still very cold – so I have been sorting that out. I have now put labels on a coat, a puffer jacket, 2 body warmers and some long knickers that she used to like wearing in the winter. I’ll take them up today when I go for the pantomime.

    Her sister has been on the phone twice, once when I was visiting my wife then yesterday morning when I was stirring my porridge. I let that go to the answer phone. Her messages were that my wife was aggressive when she visited - there is some correlation there - and that she was wondering about her clothes as she didn’t have a winter coat to wear …

    Unfortunately her sister doesn’t get that, no matter how many clothes I take up, my wife will contrive to ‘lose’ them or bundle them in an untidy heap in her wardrobe then stop me or the staff from sorting them out. It was May when she first went into residential care which is why I did not pack a winter coat. Her sister may be genuinely concerned, but her messages come across as somewhat critical so I haven’t bothered ringing back.
     
  2. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    367
    Male
    Morning @northumbrian_k, I can totally understand your frustration. The astonishment that visitors express that someone has changed as their dementia progresses is very annoying to hear (although it sounds as though there has been an underlying tension between the sisters). The 'so much worse' comments, when you are living it every day can be infuriating, although as most have absolutely no idea (unless they have walked those shoes) you just have to accept that they probably mean well. Hope it goes well with the winter coat operation, and perhaps speak to the sister (who's not doing it for herself) when you feel in a more mellow mood! All the best.
     
  3. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    897
    Male
    Newcastle
    Thanks @Pete1, unfortunately sister-in-law has just been on the phone again bemoaning the fact that my wife has 'no clothes' to wear, asking why etc. etc. I am really not sorry to say that I lost my temper with her critical and somewhat confrontational approach and ended the phone call rather abruptly. I am not answerable to her for the way in which I continue to look out for my wife's needs. The mellow mood that I was in this evening has now evaporated.
     
  4. Bod

    Bod Registered User

    Aug 30, 2013
    1,202
    Well done !
    It sounds like your SiL needs a wake up, call regarding the true state of her sisters condition.

    Bod
     
  5. jenniferjean

    jenniferjean Registered User

    Apr 2, 2016
    615
    Female
    Basingstoke, Hampshire
    I suggest you ask to her to think before she sounds off. Think about what you've been through and what you are still going through. Ask her to try and be more productive rather than criticizing.
     
  6. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    70,102
    Kent
    This reminds me of a friend of my mother`s who phoned very early one Sunday morning and woke me. She had visited my mother who had said no one comes to visit her. The friend phoned me to remonstrate.

    I don`t know how I controlled myself.
     
  7. TNJJ

    TNJJ Registered User

    May 7, 2019
    967
    Female
    cornwall
    You are better than me..I didn’t!
     
  8. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    897
    Male
    Newcastle
    Thanks all. It says a lot when the support that I get from yourselves far outweighs the contribution by family members.

    If her sister had stopped to listen, I had a few good things to tell her such as the enjoyment my wife and I shared at the pantomime, and the staff view (which backs up mine) that rather than wandering she is now settling and engaging in conversations and activities in a more active way. And that she seems less worried. My guess is that it will take some time for the flea to crawl back out of sister-in-law's ear and that she'll not be contacting me for a while.
     
  9. Pete1

    Pete1 Registered User

    Jul 16, 2019
    367
    Male
    Morning @northumbrian_k, I can't blame you at all for dispatching that flea! It does sound like an all to common theme unfortunately (I am grateful I never experienced it myself) - how sad is that. At the end of the day the 'well wishers' dip in and out when they please, its those that are left dealing with challenges and occasional joys that the daily life with dementia brings. All the best, and I hope you have mellow day.
     
  10. White Rose

    White Rose Registered User

    Nov 4, 2018
    233
    Don't they just manage to make you feel guilty with their criticism. You do everything you can in hellish circumstances to make your loved one comfortable and happy and all their other family members can do is make you feel you aren't doing a good enough job. Urrrrggggg. I'm thinking of my partner's children, there's barely any contact now but when their was it was 'why are you doing this', 'why aren't you doing that'. @northumbrian_k just carry on what you're doing, sounds like you're doing a very good job.
     
  11. northumbrian_k

    northumbrian_k Registered User

    Mar 2, 2017
    897
    Male
    Newcastle
    I was astonished once that my stepson's wife told me off for not cleaning off my wife's eye make up. Too busy at the other end dear!
     
  12. Bunpoots

    Bunpoots Volunteer Host

    Apr 1, 2016
    3,626
    Nottinghamshire
    I know I shouldn’t but that made me laugh. Some people are so clueless!!
     
  13. White Rose

    White Rose Registered User

    Nov 4, 2018
    233
    Made me laugh too, hope you don't mind @northumbrian_k. Good job we still have a bit of a sense of humour left.
     

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