Readers Respond: Plight of caring for aging parents touched many

I am the youngest of 11 kids. The oldest is 27 years older than I, almost like three generations. My parents left me & my sister in charge of their needs, (POA put in place 17 years ago). My siblings do not want to help keep my mom at home since my dad died, but yet they complain constantly and make our lives miserable about our choice to put her in a nursing facility. She requires skilled care and seems happy. I have never been close to my older siblings and find them very self centered. Most of them turned their back on my parents when their health began to fail more the past two years, but now, they want a "say so". I love my parents and have only ever done what they asked of me, I have sacrificed a lot, while the others sit back and judge. I feel like we are on an island battling for our lives. How do we cope with this stress and the self centered siblings? I know it is easy to judge, but they won't do. My two sisters and I spent all of our time at my mothers caring for her, while some of our siblings lived just three houses up the road and would not help stay with our mother, or help with her care. I live 45 minutes away, and do all Dr. appts., medicines, etc. I feel guilty moving her to a facility, but I know we are not capable of reacting to her needs. I just can't stand all of the hate around this situation. Bigger families mean bigger problems, more headaches, etc. Do we just write them out of our family, there is no reasoning with them at all.

LSW wrote:

My dad suddenly dropped and passed away in front of my mother and I almost 6 years ago. After running back and forth between my home and my mom's home because I was worried about her (and going through a nervous breakdown) my husband decided we needed to build a home and have a walkout basement apartment for my mom... I have 3 other siblings... not one of them jumped in to help out! As a matter of fact, one of them hasn't talked to my parents for 11 years — when my dad passed, she hired an attorney to get a copy of the will. My oldest brother hasn't talked to my mom since the funeral. My other brother makes visits 2 times a month (he is about 45 minutes away) with no calls in between. This article hit the nail on the head that I know they feel that the other siblings feel "she's taking care of her so I don't have to worry about it" — but you know what? It's ok, I love my mother and I will take care of her. I would have done it for both parents and even my dad had it been my mom who had passed. They aren't animals, these are our parents — for better or worse, they raised us — I know some folks have issues with their parents, but this is when you need to be the better person and step up to the plate... what goes around comes around... This has also shown my kids the value of family, the love, the patience, the commitment and sacrifices that life is all about... I thank God for my husband, my kids and my parents and pray for my siblings to wake up one day before they find themselves in the same situation... Oh, and I've been accused by one of my siblings spouse and their daughter that my mother bought my house! I keep offering to show them the mortgage statement... I charge my mother NO rent, nothing... she has her groceries delivered and pays her phone bill... but it's ok... I know the truth and I am a better person because of all of this... I worked in a nursing home, my mother will NOT go into one if I can help it!

Nursing home experiences

sharona wrote:

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