Why do some family members not want to bother with their Parents.

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by sunny, Jul 27, 2010.

  1. sunny

    sunny Registered User

    Sep 1, 2006
    I am writing this because so often in families, one person is unofficially designated as the CARER, the others dont seem to see themselves as the carer and the burden does seem to fall on one person.

    It would be much better if caring was shared but I know it isnt and I know from a lot of people on here that is not the case too.
    So what can be done to force ALL the siblings in a family to participate in the care. How can this be formalised. Any ideas?
  2. ringo

    ringo Registered User

    Apr 15, 2010
    This happened to me, because my brother lived with my parents he assumed he was doing more than he actually was. His life hadn't been affected by my dads dementia at all he still had his holidays and social life came and went as he pleased!

    Me however my life totally changed I took on the finances at my parents wish had POA, hospital appts etc and did the personal care of both parents. Havent't had a proper holiday in years lost contact with all my friends, big strain on my marriage and the relationship with my children affected!

    His behaviour as affected the way I feel about him now we were close but not anymore!

    I thought that it was because I was the daughter and thats why it was just accepted that I would do it all but I think I have a different relationship with my parents and just want to do it!
  3. Carer1

    Carer1 Registered User

    Jul 26, 2010
    Hi Sunny, I too found that I was left to care for my gran, my mum and more recently my father... alongside raising my family. My three brothers didn't want to know until the time when the estate for my gran and mum were shared out!

    I guess in my case it was because the brothers lived so far away yet I travelled 250 miles to bring my dad up to be near me.

    I don't think even the courts could FORCE siblings to share the care of parents or relatives... I only wish they could, it would have been a lot easier for me. But perhaps then the siblings would only have resentment and not give the care required?
  4. flowerpot

    flowerpot Registered User

    We look after my in laws with no help from my husbands sister! I have three sisters and myself and two of my sisters help out with our parents but you can't make family members help they have to want to do it unfortunately.
  5. CaPattinson

    CaPattinson Registered User

    May 19, 2010
    West Yorks

    Hi sunny, I'm afraid no one can be forced to become carers. Thank goodness for people like you who take on the role. I've only just heard this myself but people here refer to those who stay out of the picture Invisibles. There's a recent thread all about it. It may help to read it and you would see that you're not alone in this. Take care XXX Chris :)
  6. miss cool

    miss cool Registered User

    Jul 20, 2010
    Famly members

    Hi I felt i had to reply. I have 3 grown up children.I have alz .People take the news better than others. Its hard for you to understand as people react so difforntly. Ido not see 1 of my children .the other is still in deniel.Yes you are rite just one of my chilren help me .But i would not wont eny of my children looking after me that wasent what they wonted to do. So i hope this will help Love Miss Cool
  7. sunny

    sunny Registered User

    Sep 1, 2006
    CaPattinson - thanks for pointing me to the thread the invisibles - it has made interesting reading. Thanks all for having a chat.:)
  8. Princess M

    Princess M Registered User

    May 20, 2010
    Father in law

    This is a difficult one particularly if the siblings are all spread out. It has fallen to my husband to look after his father's interests even though we live in Cambridgeshire and my father in law lives in Devon. My brother in law lives in Newcastle and has chosen not to have any contact with his father at all.
  9. sunray

    sunray Registered User

    Sep 21, 2008
    East Coast of Australia
    In being the sole carer for my Mum who is in care, and for my husband who is at home with me I find it all a burden sometimes.I feel as if I am somehow letting others, like my sister, who should help, be selfish and uncaring by doing so much myself and expecting nothing from her?

    I'm wondering if sometimes in "coping so well" we make it all look easy and therefore others think there is no need to step in and help?

    Just a thought.

  10. Izzy

    Izzy Volunteer Moderator

    Aug 31, 2003
    I can really relate to what you say here Sue.I care for my mum at home (Vasc Dementia) and also my husband (Alz Disease) and I work full time. I do sometimes think that we make it look easy - and as you know, it's not. Take care. Izzy x
  11. BeverleyY

    BeverleyY Registered User

    Jan 29, 2008
    Ashford, Kent
    Bottom line is some people are just cut out to care, and others are not.

    My sister seems to have actually no social conscience whatsoever. I don't think it remotely crosses her mind that she doesn't do as much as she can. She's just inherently selfish.
  12. elaine n

    elaine n Registered User

    Jun 1, 2010
    west country uk
    You're right Beverly
    I think in this life there are the cares and the cared for and we all know which category we fall into don't we?! xxxelaine
  13. Jancis

    Jancis Registered User

    Jun 30, 2010
    Hi Beverley,
    Do also take a look at Martina's thread "The Invisibles"
    Best wishes
  14. lesmisralbles

    lesmisralbles Account Closed

    Nov 23, 2007
    Because that is the way it goes

    There is always the one.
    I did not want this thrust upon me.
    I could say no.
    But, I am just a girl that cannot say no, not to family.
    That is how some are made, and others are glad to let you take the strain. Do not blame them. Come on, you would do the same, I would. Or, would I ?
    Barb X
  15. Carolyn1

    Carolyn1 Registered User

    Jul 31, 2010
    I know what you mean

    This is so true. My mum went in to a care home last week so its all new to us. I havent stopped crying and feel so guilty every time I leave her, before I get there I feel ill. She is at me constantly because I put her there, saying what a bad daughter I am and if (anyone elses name - her 6 children) were there they wouldnt let her be there. This adds to my guilt, but in truth, I wouldnt see an animal living the way she was. The carers we had going in to her were lovely and did what they could in the little time they had with her, but what about the hours in between. she got that way that she cried everytime I left her, and was so unsteady on her feet I wondered how she managed to walk to the door never mind the stairs. So, yes, i have pushed the move and I feel so very guilty. As its been said on here, some people go the extra mile for a loved one, because I personally put myself in her shoes and think..if that was me how would i feel? Thats why I feel bad now too. leaving her in a care home with people who seem to be 'worse' than her. Its all very heartbreaking. So, you arnt on your own, there are lots of us out there who do 'put themselves in their shoes' its a good job really(still hurts though!) take care, and thinking of you.
  16. Loopiloo

    Loopiloo Registered User

    May 10, 2010
    I think many have families who do not 'participate'. I understand siblings and adult children who live a distance away, and cannot be of practical help. They have their own busy lives of work, family, social, domestic. In our case, adult children. But it doesn't take much effort or time to lift the phone and give some encouragement, emotional support which can be a help. I also understand the part denial can play, but...

    Yes, Sue, I think that is also part of it. others think you are "a strong woman". If only they knew how you do feel.

    But there is nothing can be done about it. It has to come from the other person/s.

  17. MJW

    MJW Registered User

    Sep 24, 2009
    East Sussex
    Some of us have no choice. As an only child I was bound to be lumbered, the alternative being to just abandon my parents to the tender mercies of the state. The only upside (if that's the right word) is that I get to make all the decisions, but I'd really rather not have the responsibility, and to be honest if I had any siblings they would not have seen me for dust. Unfortunately, I suspect that even then it would have been a case of "pass the parcel" because mine were not the best parents in the world. The fact that I'm emotionally distant from the situation makes it easier, but doing something out of love must be better than doing it out of a misplaced sense of obligation.
  18. WendyJ

    WendyJ Registered User

    Jul 29, 2009
    What about families where no-one elects to be the carer. I have an elderly friend whose family flew in from the states, looked at a few care homes, dumped her in one of them and flew home 24 hours later. The dear lady did not know where she was or why. She has grandchildren in this country - and she's had 3 visits in 6 months.

    It's been down to me to visit her - which I do every evening with her dog and we go out for walks and on the weekend we do other outings or she comes home with me. This is a strain because I have a fulltime job and also a lot of rescue dogs to care for and exercise.

    Her family seem nice folk but there's something missing. It is a large family with happy times and get-togethers well documented by millions of photographs. But they hardly ever phone her now and write less. On a recent visit to sort out the financial affairs, her son took her out on an outing just once in the week - to the bank!

    I give them regular reports on her progress and they are happy.

    Their mum is still planning to run away, bless her.

    Some families, huh?
  19. PostTenebrasLux

    PostTenebrasLux Registered User

    Mar 16, 2010
    London & Oxford
    The Invisibles' story

    Hello Sunny,

    I have spoken with some of the "Invisibles" in trying to understand why they abstain...
    One of the responses I got: "For some unknown reason a visit might even upset her [the Alzheimer sufferer], there is a mysterious (not known to us) antipathy towards X, who is a very guileless person but seems to present an abrasive character. ... that sort of thing existing in all families, quite arbitrary and with no one to blame."
    and yet.. this "Invisible" person and I communicate via his wife (by internet to the USA) as he does not type. Yet again, he does not communicate by voice but uses his wife as a "go-between"...
    Another one of my "Invisibles" has bickered with her sister most of her life and now, at the eleventh hour, is mortified, humbled and feels cast aside, that repairing a life of strife is too little too late.

    I always remember Princess Michael of Kent's reaction to the Harrods' bombing: along the lines of - it doesn't feel real when it happens somewhere else, but when it is in your back door, it hits you and then it is a different matter.

    Some people just simply have never loved and lost and thereby don't understand real joy and pain.
    They have probably never been brought up with

    John Wesley (1703-1791):
    “Do all the good you can,
    By all the means you can,
    In all the ways you can,
    In all the places you can,
    At all the times you can,
    To all the people you can,
    As long as ever you can.”

    You for sure are not an Invisible :)

  20. nicoise

    nicoise Registered User

    Jun 29, 2010
    #20 nicoise, Aug 3, 2010
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2010
    My rant!


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