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Re: I'm not sure what to do

Re: I'm not sure what to do

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Posted by Betty D. on September 03, 2000 at 19:38:04:

In Reply to: Re: I'm not sure what to do posted by Lila on September 02, 2000 at 11:31:40:

: : : My aunt fell down about a month ago, and broke her hip. It's a long story, but she has been living with my husband and me since my mother(her sister)passed away in 1986.
: : : My aunt and I have never been what you would call close. In fact, we barely had a relationship at all. She became the life tenant in this house because my mother wanted it that way. But now she is completely dependent on me. I have 5 kids, one of whom is almost 2, and 3 boys who are all mentally disabled. The oldest, 16, who has PDD, is completely dependent on me to do everything for him. I have no siblings or other relatives to turn to. My aunt is aware of my situation, but seems not to notice all I go through. She expects me to take care of all her needs, including dumping out her commode because she is afraid to walk to the toilet, even though she spent 2 weeks in rehab, and was told by the therapist that she should be walking and trying to regain some of the mobility she had before the hip replacement. She was diagnosed with anxiety disorder just recently, but I have tried to get her to see somebody for a couple of years now. She's suffered from agoraphobia for decades. But now she feels no shame in asking me to do all of her grocery shopping or picking up her meds. If I try to get her to call her doctor for an appointment, she makes up some excuse like "I'm not ready yet". I have a 22 year old son who could help, but won't--he just keeps saying "what do you expect ME to do--I HAVE A LIFE!!!!!!" My husband doesn't handle stress well, and he's going through his own battles at work. I feel like I have nowhere to turn. I also am expected to make most of her meals (although she does get meals on wheels for lunch during the week) every time I suggest looking into an assisted care program or nursing home she starts crying and starts saying how she wishes she wasn't a burden, and maybe the good Lord will take her, but in all honesty she has been pulling that stunt for years now--she used to say that when my mother was alive too and tried to pull that on her when she didn't want my mother to go on vacation. Am I wrong to want her out of here? I feel like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. My husband and I were sort of thrust into this situation, and it's causing tension between the two of us, and I can't stand it. Can anybody give me some advice?

: : Lila, Lila, Lila!!! You DO know what you must do. You have a husband and family that should come first. You have yourself that you KNOW YOU MUST TAKE CARE OF. When your Mom asked you to take care of the aunt, she didn't mean for you to wreck your health and marriage for her SISTER. Come on, bite the bullet and get your Aunt placed in an Assisted Living home. You can do it, and you MUST!!!! She may be kicking and screaming about it, but be firm, and strong in your decision. If it would make you feel better about doing this"Good" deed, talk with a counciler, minister or Doctor. I am positive they will all agree that you must make this move.
: : Since she has no concern for your well being, I feel trying to reason with her will be a waste of your time, and will really cause a big rukus in your relationship.
: : Is she financially able to go to a Home? How old is she? Does she not have children of her own?
: : Is she on Medicaid? I assume she doesn't have any expenses, since she lives with you????
: : Go visit one of the homes and find out about expenses,etc. The manager there will be able to answer your questions and give you some good advice,and will have suggestions on how to make the move. Don't ask her......tell her.
: : I wish you the best of luck in this most upsetting situatiion, but you must decide to make this move for your own health. You know, as long as you let her impose on you, the longer she will. It is UP TO YOU to right this wrong!DON'T BE HER DOOR MAT ANY LONGER.
: Thankyou so much Betty for your kind and supportive words. You don't know how much I needed to hear that. But to answer your questions, she is 84, has no children, is on Medicare, and has about 20,000 in the bank. I have been asking everybody I know what they think I should do, and the only person who could tell me anything was my sister in law, who took care of her grandmother while she had ovarian cancer. But it was her grandmother, and she had no children to worry about. But she basically said the same thing you did. I should just be firm,and you are so right. So thankyou, thankyou for taking the time to show concern.

Lila, thank you for your post. I have certainly thought of you and your situation, and hoped that the situation is being taken care of. I know it is so easy for someone on the sidelines to offer advise. No one really knows until they walk in "your" shoes. You do realize that caretakers can take on so much and that is it! You have gone far beyond the care that caretakers are expected to do.
Your Aunt, having Agoraphobia, has taken you as her Obligatory companion, and doesn't want to go anywhere without you. This condition is usually brought about by anxiety attacks, probably happening at earlier times.
It is possible for her to form other attachments when she gets settled into a home, especially if she has a roomate.
We placed my mom in an assisted living when she was 9l. She soon made friends, the ladies were ambulatory, there were activities, good meals,maid service, etc. A semi-private room ran around l700.00/mo. A private was about $2,000. It was really according what level they were on. By this I mean how much assistance they required.
Of course, after their finances run out, medicade can take over. We never got to that point, as I lost her in March of this year.
I am so sorry about your children. That, in itself, is such a heavy load for you. You certainly do NOT need another to care for.
I do hope you are making progress . You must make some time for yourself! That is just a bunch of bull --it, isn't it? Moms, never get through. Hope your son will make a turn around and be of great help to you.
Let me hear. I will keep you and yours in my prayers. Blessings, Betty D.

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