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Worried about Dad - need advice / thoughts please - Carers UK Forum

Worried about Dad - need advice / thoughts please

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Hi Maria

Welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear about your Mum and your Dad trying to cope as her carer. It must be so difficult caring for a partner. Harder I think than caring for a parent. I dont know.

I'm not replying to give advice but to let you know that I have been through something similar.

My Dad met someone else when he was looking after my Mum for the first 2 yrs after her brain haemorrhage. This woman was horrible......evil. She was a care co-ordinator for a national respite care company not mentioning any names and abused her position to get my Father where she wanted him. Obviously I am biased. But at the time, I warned my Dad against her and he wouldn't listen. I couldn;t understand what a 38 year old saw in my then 52 year old Dad! Anyway, I lost touch with him for years. He married this awful woman after living with her for 9 years and looked after her two children, putting one through university. Then she left him and ran off with a childhood sweetheart of hers after 2 years of being married to my Dad and she made a handsome £80k out of it! Stupid man - serves him right. I am back in touch with my Dad (he got in touch with my sister & myself last year, probably because he's lonely) but I have lost a great deal of respect for him.

I'm always astounded when I hear about these sorts of women that prey on vulnerable, tired and needy (and in my Father's case, weak men).

The woman who has "befriended" your Dad does not sound like she has his best interests at heart. Why would she talk about you like that? What right has she to comment on the level of support you provide? If she really cared she would keep her mean opinions to herself. She sounds very jealous.
I am really worried that this woman has more on her agenda than simply being a supportive friend/girlfriend to Dad.
Yes, I would agree with you on that score. It sounds to me that she has alterior motives.

It's up to you whether you broach the subject with him but it might be in your Mother's interests to do it sooner rather than later, but that's just my opinion. If your Father is interested in this woman, there's nothing you can do about that, and that may be upsetting. He knows you are there when he needs you but I'm sure he realises that you have your own life to live and a family to support.

Perhaps you could encourage your Mum and Dad to move to be nearer to where you live? Or at least discuss it.

Anyway - good luck.

I hope he sees through her.

All the best

CB xx
Hi Maria

now I haven't got any experience of this kind of behaviour and I am probably the worst person to respond as I drive my family mad with my 'always seeing the good in people first' attitude, but even I would be concerned with the fact that she is obviously bringing you up on a regular basis when your dad has got more than enough to worry about. It sounds like you have a very strong relationship with your dad, would you be able to bring up the possibilty of him 'finding a friend' for support and that you wouldnt object to this, would he then be able to 'confide' in you that he already have found that friend and you go from there, asking gentle questions about her and what she is like? You also said they are unwilling to move closer to you, of course you cannot force that upon them, but would there be anyway that when your mum goes into respite that your Dad could come and stay with you for a few days, show him the distance it is to yours and although I have had the guilt card played on me all my life and hate it, could you play on the distance, the difficulties in dragging your child along etc and once you have him with you, show him the area and whats on offer etc - just a thought that probably wouldnt work but unless you say/try/think you never know.
I dont think you are being paranoid as why is she being so wicked about you and as you say he is obviously very happy with your support and yet she still questions it, but remember that it is hard for the children, my uncle lost his wife of 47 years in February, they had had 17 months to do and say all that needed to be done before she passed over, I was speaking to him on the phone last week and he has a 'friend' - long story short, she lost her husband at the beginning of last year and being a part of their church, my aunt and uncle took her under their wing and supported her through it. When my aunt was in the hospice she called this lady in and said look after him when I'm no longer here. They have been supporting each other since, nothing too outrageous, but they obviouly talk about which direction this relationship is going in. My uncle has 3 kids, all in their 40s, who all know this lady, all know what their mum said and yet 2 of them now think not very nice things about their dad and this lady - so it is perception, worry, and timing I guess is a huge issue - but at the end of the day as my wise sister keeps reminding me, life is too short. I think what I am trying to say is dont let this eat away at you, find a way to approach your dad, as with most worries, we make ourselves sick and then they turn out to be less than half as bad as we think, you'd think we would have learnt by now.

best of luck

best wishes, Sal x




Just a little thought about all this.

Your Dad probably sees this person as a friend in his time of need, and may not realise that other things are going on. Especially if he's tired, because that's when our judgement falters.


Hi Maria,
What a worrying situation this appears to be. You mentioned that your parents had friends you trust nearby. It could be worthwhile getting to know them a little. To illustrate how this could be useful, this is what I did when an elderly neighbour's husband became increasingly ill.

I care for my elderly and disabled father, living with him in a hamlet in a rural part of Wiltshire. We had already established a neighbourly relationship with Mr & Mrs M. Initially, I would get bits of shopping, give Mrs M lifts occasionally, etc, but I suspect the most useful thing we did was to listen. This meant we got to know what was bothering her or causing her most difficulty. Her son was at the time travelling all over Britain for his work, spending extended periods in Scotland, her daughter is living in Edinburgh, but they both visited as often as they could. Just as my own mother did with me when she was in the earlier stages of her final illness, Mrs M would often put off their visits. Mrs M is relatively fit, but in her eighties, so was becoming very tired, despite being exceptionally good at looking after other people all her life. Her son and daughter quietly asked me (out of her hearing) to let them know if Mrs M appeared to be nearing the limits of coping. Neither they nor I wanted daily bulletins or anything like that, it just helped them to know that there was someone to sound the alarm - even if all that was needed was an extra phone call to their mother. Your parents, my father and Mrs M are all of a generation which resists asking for help. It would be useful all round if you could let at least one of your parents' local friends know your phone number, perhaps telling them that you are concerned your father is getting very tired, it would be helpful if the friend could let you know when your father needs a little extra support. It is likely your father will tell a friend things he might not consider talking to you about, so they might get a better idea (or sooner) how he is feeling.


Morning Maria,

Just want to welcome you to the forum.I cant add anymore to what the others have said but so pleased that you are feeling better for joining.

Look forward to reading more from you.