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Parents are a package deal
Livesbythebeach
Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 6:52 AM
Joined: 4/3/2019
Posts: 61


I've always had a terribly dysfunctional relationship with my mom, while my dad and I were always so similar.  Now that she's showing signs of cognitive decline, she's become incredibly difficult. She has many, many delusions, all of which get spewed out in a completely disjointed fashion. And she's mean to me and my dad all the time. None of this is ok, and none of it is easy since she basically thinks I'm a lazy bum. Dad thinks I'm a pretty cool kid and I think he's cool. 

They ARE coming to visit next week, I didn't agree, but resigned myself to it because they come visit every year, and I'd never forgive myself for not seeing my dad.  They will stay with me only two nights, which I can handle.  Not easy, but I can manage. They've been married nearly 50 years and come as a package deal.  I have to tell myself that this makes my dad happy, and that this visit is about supporting him, and respecting him, and maybe taking the burden off him for a couple of hours. A friend who has a rental property up the street offered for my parents to stay there (for free) so I may take her up on that.  Her house is cute and no stairs. 

Also, I called the alz hotline and got a LOT of good advice (and cried a lot). Amongst other things: I'm going to try to talk to Dad about getting mom to the doctor.  They live 1,000 miles away so I cannot coordinate that. Also am going to ignore my mother when she starts rambling, whether it's redirecting or walking away or pretending I have a phone call to take.  And I know it's ok for me to be kind of angry and stressed, I have a lot on my plate workwise and stress has been manifesting itself physically.  I just need to get through this. Having work to focus on helps me- during my sleepless nights, I worry about my next big proejct instead of my parents' visit!

I also just have to let go of trying to do what I always did- clean frantically, get her favorite foods, etc . . . nothing ever makes her happy, so I'm going to keep it simple and take care of dad.  Dad's happy with a cup of good coffee, a glass of red wine, a nice walk, reading news online, talking about my job, etc. Mom lives in her world of delusion where I find some handsome prince to rescue me from my sad life of living like a raggamuffin and then I can afford endless trips to the beauty salon. 

We already have a clear plan for the day they arrive (taxi from the airport for them, order dinner in, and then they will head off to their beach house).  Then the night before they leave, back here, dinner in (dad will be exhausted from having had to manage eating out with her for so many days), then they head to the airport early the next morning.  Praying the weather is good for their visit - but I can't control that, nor can I control how they respond to bad weather. My dad and I are the kind of people who go for a hike in the rain, while mom sits around and complains. 

And while they are at the beach house, mom's texts are blocked.  I have way too much to manage and so I've been keeping her blocked except for one day a week when I text her quickly and that's it. I sent her a mother's day card so I could avoid having to actually speak to her, which made me less stressed.  She texted saying she loved it, and then sent another text cc'ing my brother (who I haven't spoken to in over four years).  Deleted, and blocked again. 

Sorry for the long post, but I have so many thoughts and feelings and somedays I think reading everyone else's posts here is the only thing keeping me sane!

 


gubblebumm
Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 10:39 AM
Joined: 7/12/2017
Posts: 1068


are the POA set up? You know that caregivers, like you dad, often get sick and die before the person they are caring for, and you need to be mentally and legally prepared for his illness or death, sadly.  So while he is doing it all, there needs to be NOW a plan in place for mom if he gets ill, paperwork set up, information, all of it and if he does get sick, where will mom go? Your house? Now is the time to have this hard conversation if you  havent already

Livesbythebeach
Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 1:53 PM
Joined: 4/3/2019
Posts: 61


Gubblebumm- Yes, I have POA for both my parents. We set it up a couple of years ago, so my plan is to have a talk with Dad when we have a chance, without Mom present. 

And definitely NO- Mom should not move in with me.  I'm definitely clear on that!  

They are going to look at some condos nearby and hopefully will think about selling their home and making the transition in the next year or so.  


 
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