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My first post - Carers UK Forum

My first post

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
Hello - I’m Rebecca and I am carer to my father who I also live with. I moved in here about fifteen years ago. I had lived next door but I was finding it difficult to finance , being divorced, and only having one income. The living arrangements are that I have the upstairs, and he has the downstairs, and we share kitchen. I have never got on well with my parents, but until my mother died two years ago, when I also cared for her at home until her death, my parents were fairly self sufficient, and we lived reasonably harmoniously together. My father is 91 now and is very difficult, and issues that we have stemming from childhood make it impossible for me to either respect or like him.
I’m sure most of you love your fathers and don’t resent them the way I do mine. He’s very physically fit and I see him living at least another five years and possibly more. Meanwhile I’m now 69 and feel that my life is over, and I resent him for that.
I can’t move out, I spend time with my children , I try to have outside interests etc but honestly I hate every minute I have to spend in his company and I can’t wait to be on my own again.
I’m sorry if this post shocks you, I can only speak honestly, and I hope that someone will be able to empathise with it.
I would love to know if anybody else here is having the same experiences as me, and if nothing else at least we may be able to offer each other some support and encouragement.
Rebecca
Hi Rebecca, welcome to the forum.

Lots of us have had less than perfect parents, it's OK to say how you feel, in fact that is a really important step in moving forward.
I'll ask you a few questions at a time, to avoid bombarding with you, to help us understand more. I'm not going anywhere at the moment!!

The most important question, although you might not realise it, is whether dad owns or rents his house?
Does he have over £23,000 in savings (Yes/No)
Does "we share the kitchen" mean you have to prepare his meals and wash up?
Do you have a kitchenette upstairs? Would you like one?
Do you share a bathroom?
Hello

I had issues with my late father too and am an only child. I did not love him or even like him. I have to say I am caring for my much older husband and frankly it is hell. I do not think you should feel guilty for expressing your feelings. A lot of older people and this includes my late father and husband are very difficult and their own worst enemies/.

No one can make you care. Is there anyway you could get onto a waiting list for sheltered accomodation? Could you rent somewhere locally? What do you have to do to care for him?
Feeling sympathy. My Dad wasn't a particularly good one and I resented the burden that care for him put on my family. He died over a year ago and I still struggle with the feelings of resentment. And I wasn't a live in carer, so I did have an escape.

Please don't feel guilty expressing these feelings. Let them out. And don't waste your life caring if you don't want to.

Sending lots of sympathy.
Hello Rebecca

You're not alone and I'm certainly not shocked. My dad lives with me, slightly different situation - when diagnosed with terminal lung cancer 20 months ago I insisted he move in with me and my partner so I could give him a comfortable end of life. I adored my dad, he was my only source of affection as a child as mother had no interest.
Didn't realise that I actually adored a man I didn't know at all, so blinded and needy for the 'love'

4 months later my partner moved out. 3 months after that we split up as my partner very quickly saw exactly what my dad was. It took me a little longer for the blinkers to fall away.

Now I find myself living with a selfish, manipulative man so far removed from the dad I thought he was. His friends and wider family think he's this great jolly fun bloke, salt of the earth, adores his daughters and grandkids. In reality he shows or withholds affection in order to manipulate (which I now see a mile off and refuse to be played any more) he sulks (also now ignored) and his sense of entitlement is absolutely breathtaking. He genuinely seems to believe its his god given right to be as happy as possible and my duty to provide that.

The anger, frustration, feeling trapped, it's overwhelming sometimes.
In addition to the above, we're very different people too. Politically polar opposite. I'm vegan, his favourite TV program is alaska survival families where every episode is some poor animal being trapped or killed and skinned.

It's very tough but sharing frustration and ranting does help. I'm incredibly lucky my sister understands, so does my best friend and I rant away to them. My partner and I got back together at Christmas, he's a great comfort and I see him some weekends (although obviously no longer) so I completely understand the life on hold thing. I feel I'm waiting for dad to die so my life can restart. I'm 46
Please feel free to send me a message. Ranting to someone who doesn't judge, who understands, and will just listen is massively helpful.
I honestly feel for you, message me if you need a rant x
Tina
Rebecca_2004 wrote:
Wed Apr 08, 2020 7:43 am

I’m sorry if this post shocks you, I can only speak honestly, and I hope that someone will be able to empathise with it.
I would love to know if anybody else here is having the same experiences as me, and if nothing else at least we may be able to offer each other some support and encouragement.
I can empathise completely, although in my case my problem is my wife. Possibly this makes it even harder, we can't choose our parents but I did choose my wife, but she is no longer the girl I chose almost 50 years ago. It's not her fault, she has MS, she has serious memory problems and imo the beginnings of dementia. There are times when it's difficult to even like who/what she is now.

I cope by doing my best for her, but also looking after Number 1 first, I don't feel guilty about that, it's just how it has to be for me to be able to continue.

Her biggest problem is mental, in that she thinks she is going to get better one day and be able to walk again, she won't, and I do tell her that, possibly too often and too forcefully, I don't know, I'm not a psychiatrist, just honest with her, but she doesn't want to do anything that she used to do unless she can do it how she used to and that's not going to happen.

I've tried pointing out to her that it's the equivalent of just waiting to die, but I know she won't change, both her mother and her grandmother were equally stubborn.

That's my little rant over. :blush:

Good luck and don't ever feel guilty, feeling sad is allowed, (but not for too long).