[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 585: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/phpbb/session.php on line 641: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable
New to caring - Carers UK Forum

New to caring

Tell us a bit about yourself here.
Hi I am new to caring and didn't realise how tiring it would be. I have been caring for my father who is 89 since my mother died last June. He was her carer and neglected himself and the house. They refused to have help, even from me. Now I have left my partner and moved in with dad because not only is he grieving, he has serious arthritis in his hips and this has become worse over the last few months, also other minor health issues. He is waiting for a hip replacement. He is able to do very little for himself.
I feel very isolated and I have no life of my own. I retired from my job. My brother lives in France and my sister lives about 300 miles away. People tell me I need to look after myself but how do I do this. I have no one to help me. I have not been able to gt to a carers meeting so far. Most of our time seems to be taken up with hospital and doctor appointments.
Hi Catherine
The answer is that you must get someone to help you, even if it's only for a couple of hours a week initially, or maybe more.
No one person can care for another 24/7/365. As his needs increase (which they will, people don't recover from old age) so will the need for help increase.

You need to contact social services for a Needs assessment for him, and for a Carers assessment for you. You will need to be assertive to get these, as the meek and mild, or those who don't ask repeatedly, get nothing these days

Hopefully someone else will be along with the pointers regarding finances and benefits etc

Hi Catherine, welcome to the forum. Dad is no doubt expecting you to fill mum's place in his life?!

He is probably oblivious to your situation, all you have given up for him?
If you are not happy, then only you can make the changes needed.
First, a few questions.
Do you have power of attorney?
Know what dad's financial situation is?
Does he own the house? Has he made a will?
Hi thank you for your reply. I have come to realize that I need help and I am trying to find ways of getting it. Dad seems oblivious of what I have given up for him, but he must realize that I am here with him now and not doing the things I used to. We have applied for power of attorney and waiting for it to come through. Yes I know his financial situation. It makes me angry that he has money sitting in various accounts and won't spend any of it on the house to make life easier.
At 89. He's classed as very elderly. A very common problem is being totally "self focussed" as a natural part of the ageing process, so he may be incapable of "realising". He will gradually become an elderly toddler, needing someone else to run his life. Has he signed the POA?
I agree, he won't 'realise' anything! My poor MIL with dementia develoiogn didn't either - she didn't twig I was giving up my own life entirely to look after her.

It's the same with your dad alas (with or without dementia!)

The essential thing is to get PoA - once you have it you can really get sorted.

That said, your dad needs a Needs Assessement, and you a Carer's Assessment, to see what benefits you are both entitled to - that will provide some money to get care-workers in.

Will your dad pay NOW for care-workers (or any other kind of support to lessen the load on you)? What are your own funds? Can you 'loan' your dad money for carers coming in, that he must repay out of his own funds, once you have PoA.

Also, if he has under £23,500 in savings, he should, I understand, be eligible for some 'free care' by the council, so press ahead on that.

You will have to take charge of his life, and his care, and his money - think of yourself as a care organiser, not only as a care provider.

You need to get SOME of your own life back at least, and the only way is to have 'outsiders' come in to do what you are now doing.

Looking ahead - is your father likely to need (or benefit from) residential care? And, grimly, but essentially, what is likely to be his life expectancy?

If he goes into residential care, or reaches the end of his life, then you get your life back.....

How have you left it with your partner? Have you split 'totally', or could your relationship be put 'on hold' until you free up more time to resume it, or could it be adapted to you living with your dad, but having time with your partner as well (once your dad has more outside help?)

One thing please undertand - do NOT expect your dad to 'accept' outside care! He will probagly only want YOU, and that is understandable - BUT, the point is this. His choice is not 'you care' or 'outsiders care' - the choice is 'outsiders AND you care' or NO ONE cares/he goes into residential care.

If he wants you AT ALL, then he HAS to take outside carers as well - that's 'the deal'. he won't like it, but that is all that is on offer for him. YOU TOO have a right to a life.
Thank you Jenny.

We are waiting for POA. We went through all the benefit stuff when mum was still here, they had too much money to get anything for free. Now he has her money as well! I have my pension. I can't loan him any money, he would forget to pay it back. He has lost all sense of money and is having difficulty with paying bills, part of my job is to try to keep track of everything and the complicated systems he has. At the moment his real problem is arthritis, he is waiting for hip replacements.We think he may have some dementia, but this could be his medication. Otherwise not much wrong with him. We don't foresee a need for residential care. I am seeing my brother and sister soon so we can have a discussion about getting outside help. I have split totally from my partner, things hadn't been right for a while, no wish to carry on the relationship. Yes I need to get some sort of life back.
Once the POA arrives, your dad can pay you back for whatever you lend him now - as in, YOU can use his PoA-available money to pay yourself back!

Best to write a 'note of hand' on a piece of A 4 saying you are lending him x amount, to be repaid from his funds, and sign and date it. If it's going into a bank account, put the bank account details, and the date it went in, and maybe a photocopy of the statements (his going in, and yours going out!

Then when you get PoA and can access his funds, repay it to yourself, and write on the Note that it has now been repaid, and date t, and, again, to be absolutely safe, photocopy the in/out bank statements.

That then protects you from any 'accusations' that you are taking his money for yourself!