Caring for Both Elderly Parents AND Your Own Children - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 04-17-2010, 08:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is anyone else in this situation? We have 3 children - aged 4, 2 1/2, and 6 months and over the past few years - especially more so in the past month - we are caring more and more for one set of our parents.

I am wondering if there are others, and how do you manage your time???

WAHM to a toddler, preschooler, and kindergarten student. 
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#2 of 9 Old 04-22-2010, 09:30 AM
 
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Hi there!

I couln't do it. We tried for 6 months, and my baby was a year old when we began and 18 months when we decided it was not possible. My mother was in a wheelchair, with osteomielitis and depression. Also early onset dementia. Many times, I left baby unattended to help my mother to the bathroom or something. Or left her waiting while tending to my son. It wasn't easy.
Then, my mom's mental health started deteriorating more. She suffered an amputation and at night she was screaminf for me, and i would find her on the floor because she tried to get up. Or she would be all dressed and telling me she wanted to get up for the day, and it was 4 am.
The last thing, was a psychotic episode, where she got agressive and delusional. Then we decided it was impossible, and that i had to care for my child. My mom lived her life already and if she would have been faced with the same desicion when me and my brother were young, she would have chosen us. It's very very sad, but it's the order of life.
Nw she is in a group home. she is cared for, we go visit every week, she's stable, contained and has social interaction. Given the circumstances, it was the right thing to do.
Sorry, that was not fun to read. Please take care of yourself, it is very taxing, and you need help. Just you with 3 young children and two parents (I don't know their conditions) must be very very hard.
I send you a big hug!
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#3 of 9 Old 04-26-2010, 02:17 PM
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I am the caretaker for my mom, who has Alzheimer's. She lives in an assisted living facility, but I still consider myself to be her caretaker. When she was home with me, it was extremely difficult - even dangerous. She ran away a few times, and had some violent and aggressive behavior. On some occasions, I had to choose between dealing with my son and chasing after her. It was really taxing. Things are a lot better with her living at assisted living, but it is still very very hard. I am in constant fear that she will be kicked out (common for people with violent behavior), or that she will refuse to go back when I take her out (such as for a doctor appointment). I WOHM, so I have to leave work a lot to deal with her. I am hoping that she dies soon to put an end to her suffering.


Mom to DS 12/07 and DD 11/13, plus a bunch of chickens, dogs, and cats.

Moving past many years of infertility and always thinking of my friends in the infertility forums.

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#4 of 9 Old 04-30-2010, 02:16 PM
 
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We cared for my almost 84 yo mil for years. She lived alone in her own house but dh went over there to prepare her breakfast before he went to work. And was with her in the middle of the day for lunch and to do her housework, personal care, and yard work (he works a split shift). Our son (12) and I would take dinner over to her, eat dinner with her, and stay for a couple of hours. Then we would come home. She has refused to have us live with her or to go to a senior complex.The last 2 years our 32 yo dd and her family (dh, 2, now 3 kids) live with us. And I watch our other dd's girl several times a week. Now she has to go to an assisted living complex because she can no longer live in her house. She is beyond our ability to care for her even if we did move in with her. And she is mad at all of us. BUt there is no alternative. She is out of it most of the time, has very limited (to no) mobility on her own, is legally blind (she gave up her car years ago), can't hear well. All of the legal things we are doing now should have been done years ago but she refused. So now it all has to be done in a rush over the last 10 days. It has been very dark time for us. She has been a wonderful mil, almost a 2nd mom and my best friend for almost 37 years.

Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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#5 of 9 Old 05-09-2010, 01:19 AM
 
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I'm bowing out of this thread as my mil died this morning. Not only has dh lost both his parents now (his dad died 18 years ago), I have lost my best friend and 2nd mother.

Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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#6 of 9 Old 05-11-2010, 11:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sewchris2642 View Post
I'm bowing out of this thread as my mil died this morning. Not only has dh lost both his parents now (his dad died 18 years ago), I have lost my best friend and 2nd mother.
I'm sorry for your loss

Scarlett bfinfant.gif , DH Boris geek.gif , DS 1/29/08 Julian kid.gif DD2 6/7/12 babygirl.gif missing our DD 1/06/06 Sonja angel3.gif and MC @ 9 wks 11/18/06 Satchel  angel.gif

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#7 of 9 Old 05-11-2011, 03:36 PM
 
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hi all,

 

I searched for a tribe for mamas caring for mamas, and this came up- hope it's OK if I join.

 

sewchris, I'm so sorry for your loss.

 

My mom isn't elderly, she's only 63, but she is dying. She has stage IV cancer; it started out as uterine cancer and has recurred and spread to her lungs. Her doctor recently gave her 1-5 years to live. Right now she lives about 4 hours drive away, but her living situation isn't good and she has decided to move to my area so she can spend as much time as she can with her grandkids before she dies. My kids are 2.5 and 5. She just told me today that she wants to come live closer. I have such mixed emotions about it. I love my mom, but we get on each others nerves pretty badly after anything longer than a 4 or 5 day visit. She is an alcoholic, she has an anxiety disorder, and she has boundary issues. She's also one of the sweetest, kindest people I've ever known. The kids adore her, and she them. I feel horribly guilty about it but I don't feel like we can handle having her live with us, so we're going to look for an apt nearby. I think it will be best for everyone and I just hope her feelings won't be too hurt.

 

So that's where I stand now. I've been crying on and off all day, first at the finality of the lifespan prognosis- we kind of knew it already but this is the most clearly it's been spelled out- and then at the prospect of being my mom's main caregiver (or care-coordinator) while also struggling to care for my own family. I just want to crawl into a hole and escape from the whole situation. I wish a secret long-lost millionaire Aunt would swoop in and buy her a lovely condo with maid service, cook, and nurse so I could focus on spending time with her and not worry about the details. As it is, it's just me and DH. My sister lives somewhat nearby but has fragile bipolar and pretty much can just care for herself. My moms' siblings either live far away or are unable to help. My father left her 10 years ago and is remarried. So that's it. Time to build my own support network and take on this challenge without falling to pieces.


SAHM to 6.5yo DS and 4yo DD. PCOS with two early m/cs. Married 8 yrs. Certified birth doula, writer, editor.

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#8 of 9 Old 05-12-2011, 07:33 PM
 
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Thank you Scarlett and Katielady for your kind words.  It's hard to think that it has been a year.  Mother's Day dinner was bitter sweet with out her.  But life is a lot less stressful.

 

Katie, start researching what community support and services are available to you now before you (and your mom) need them.  We were surprised at the wide range and number of services that are available in our area.  Everything from meals on wheels to door to door transportation to hospice care and everything in between.  Some are income based, others aren't.  We didn't use any of them as my mother-in-law didn't want any strangers taking care of her.  And other than housekeeping and transportation, she really didn't need any help until the end.  And then we found a care facility for her.  But knowing what was available relieved a lot of stress on our part.

 

 


Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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#9 of 9 Old 05-13-2011, 12:52 PM
 
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thanks for the advice, sewchris. I have signed up for the local chapter of Gilda's Club, which sounds like a great resource for families dealing with cancer. I'm going to an intro meeting for that next tuesday. Hopefully that will lead to all kinds of other info. Meanwhile I'm trying to find housing for her. She'll stay with us at first I think but we're hoping to find her her own place. A big challenge, as housing is super expensive in my area and my mom is broke. She is eligible for senior housing but there are long wait lists and I have to find out if she can even get on the lists not having been a resident here. It's a lot.


SAHM to 6.5yo DS and 4yo DD. PCOS with two early m/cs. Married 8 yrs. Certified birth doula, writer, editor.

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