Caring for a complainer

Hi, I am new here, and looking for support. Can anyone help me with the following questions?
How do people cope with being a carer for someone who is difficult, proud, and ill at the same time? How do they rebuild their lives after? Does putting up with the situation damage your self-esteem irreparably? These questions occupy my time a lot. It eats away at me, and I find even when I have time to myself I don’t use it well.

You need to give us a bit more info?
Both your ages and relationship? Do you live in the same property?
Owned or rented?
Health issues?
My reply would be very different depending on circumstances.

Hello and welcome!

What is the nature of her disability? Is it physical or cognitive or both?

Thanks for getting back to me. I am sorry, but I feel bad about even asking for help, as if I am being disloyal. I am also a bit afraid that he will see this and use it as an excuse to be hurtful.
The basics are : This is my Dad. I live very near to him, in his property as I could not afford to buy in his area. I used to own my own home before I got divorced, but right at the time I was about to buy my Mum got sick and I was approached by family asking to help out. I could have got my own place if he had agreed to move to where I lived, but he likes it here. He has heart issues which is currently making him a bit housebound, but I have been here to support him through other illnesses for several years. Every time I make plans to move away, to get on with my own life, something else comes up. I am then told I am a failure for not moving forwards, which is hard to hear. It is as if the only people around here who get respect are those who are self-centered and focused on their careers.
I accept I need more drive and to not let things get me down, but how can I be more like this?

He sounds like he is using what is called coercive control, undermining your self esteem so you feel worthless and so stay with him. Nasty. He is treating you as if he has all the power, but in fact he needs you, you don’t need him! My father in law was like that, no point in confrontation, so don’t give him the satisfaction of getting upset. The rest of the family want you to look after him so they don’t have to.
Does he own or rent his house?
Have over £23,000 in savings?
Claim Attendance Allowance?

When did you last have a holiday?

Do you claim Carers Allowance?
Does dad give you anything for the work you do for him?
When did dad last have a Social Services Needs Assessment and a Carers Assessment for you?

I know he can be controlling, but I am never sure how much it is him, and how much it is my siblings. They are the sort to refuse point blank to move in, it would not enter their heads to do so, so they think I am weak. For me at the time I thought it would be temporary, but once here my self-confidence took a down turn, mainly due to the things Dad said to me, but also other people. Is this something that happens to a lot of people?

I work full-time so don’t actually need to claim, plus my Dad is not on benefits so I don’t even know if I could claim. This might change if he gets a lot worse though, so maybe I should look into it. Dad pays for petrol if I or another person takes him somewhere, and he pays the fuel costs here, but it costs me a lot of money each month to keep my belongings in storage, as much as household expenses would be. I would move it all in here, but Dad has his furniture here, and does not want to get rid of it. He has suggested I sell my stuff, but that makes me feel insecure as he does that ‘move out if you are not happy’ routine. Basically I am no worse or better off than if I was living in my own home, but I don’t think he sees it that way. Plus I don’t have freedom I would have in my own home.
Never had any assessment as Dad has been pretty much independent until recently.

Dad should claim Attendance Allowance, it’s not means tested.
What will happen to you when dad dies or needs residential care???
He needs you but won’t let you have any of your stuff there?

Thanks for the advice. If I need to reduce my hours some extra cash would be helpful. I do need to take action about my stuff, maybe we can compromise. It helps to be able to talk about the issue, I am alone a lot of the time, or with people who are not interested in my problems.

I’d forgotten you were working. Unless you earn under £123 after various deductions, you won’t qualify for Carers Allowance.

Hi, Funny you should say this but my Ex-husband used coercive control, and made me feel as if I could never be anyone without him. Eventually he found a newer model (lucky for me, once I got over the shock of having my life turned upside down), and it took a while but I was getting my life back. Whether it is my Dad, or the rest of the family, this feels a lot like it. I feel at times as if I am unable to start over somewhere else. My mind cannot encompass what is needed to do. I have lost touch with a lot of people, and feel ashamed to be honest that I have let this happen again. Funnily enough a lot of people told me they looked up to me in my last job, and thought I was ok, but I hid it all too well. I hate asking for help, or admitting weakness as the controller often seems to enjoy his, and find ways to blame me for it.Does anyone else find this?

Start by making a list of goals and dreams.
Make another one in priority of the things you want to avoid most as far as dad is concerned, and share it with us, the top two. Get a book called Starting again by Sarah Litvinoff, really easy to read with ideas. Cheap on eBay.
You haven’t said if dad owns or rents the house?
Presumably family will quickly come running when dad is dead and they want their share?!