Gnashing my teeth

My Ghost Sister pulled another stunt at the start of lockdown. Initially she insisted she had COPD which surprisingly she’d never mentioned before so absolutely could not risk coming to help look after Mum. Leaving me to struggle on my own. Not one phone call did I get to see if I was OK, nada!

I finally shamed her into coming out when shielding finished and on Sunday she graciously condescended to rejoin us.

On Sunday she didn’t give Mum her meds and came up with some half arsed excuse. Then she didn’t turn on the water heater so mum had no hot water. (she didn’t know how apparently, poor baby). Today, however she hit the jackpot. I am currently in hour 3 of a wait in Casualty because she’d arrived to do her bit and found Mum bleeding from an injury to her arm. She didn’t bother contacting the doctor, didn’t try the drop in centre and didn’t bother to call me. I asked her why she’d just left it she insisted mum had told her she didn’t need it. Mum has dementia and couldn’t even remember how she’d hurt herself. GS is obviously too hopeless to take her phone into the garden or the loo to call me.

Instead she left it until I got in from a full day at work before buggering off at the first opportunity, leaving me to cart my poor mother up to Casualty by myself. And she managed to mess up mum’s pills for a second time!!

I’m just at the end of my patience with her. She’s got this faux incompetence trick down to a T. ‘If I make a rubbish job of it they won’t ask me again and I can go back to doing what I want.’

I think to put it nicely this is neglect and very serious, leaving someone injured and doing nothing.

You just cannot leave someone injured and bleeding and do nothing especially if the person has dementia.

At the very least morally wrong.

What if it was something more serious, your mum had a fall, leave her lying on the floor? until you come back home.

And not giving your mum her medication, again that’s neglect.

Hello Nikki

I almost can’t believe what I’ve just read: you could be describing my sister. I don’t want to depress you even more with another story similar to yours, so I’ll mention just a few details from the last 11+ years.

My sister lives next door but one and no real help was ever forthcoming for the first three years of mum’s Alzheimer’s disease, except calling in once or twice a week for a cup of tea and a chat. She has never contacted social services. The only phone call I’m aware she has ever made was with regard to mum’s being overcharged for the council tax. “It’s our inheritance.” Notice how I was included.

As with you, my sister failed to give mum her medication. On one of the two occasions that mum stayed with my sister a full weekend’s amount of meds weren’t given. And they were in a tray.

But the incident that sealed this situation was when I suffered a tonic clonic seizure while driving to the shop. This came out of the blue as there’d been no seizure activity for seven years. I called my sister from the hospital in the presence of a policewoman. Five times I asked her to call round at mum’s, a distance of about 100 ft including driveways. This simple request was denied five times and my sister hung up. Even the policewoman was shocked when I held up the phone saying “She’s put the f… phone down on me”. I will say here that she did call round after this phone conversation. Four years after this crash we discussed the telephone call and my sister said she couldn’t understand what I was saying. Enough was understood to refuse the request repeatedly.

You will lose your patience with your sister Nikki, if she’s anything like mine. That’s inevitable. And you’ll do that simply because you’ll realise you’re doing it all. The lonely emergency hospitalisations. All of it is down to you. Not one phone call during the virus here. She’s seen our mother 3 times this year, and two of those occasions were in January in hospital.

I wish you great strength; I hope you will not become as angry and beaten down as I have over the years.

My very best wishes, David

She’ll hot foot it round there when it comes to getting her inheritance I expect???

You are all right of course. She didn’t even notice that Mum was having problems with her memory until I mentioned it. Mum’s friend and hairdresser mentioned it to me well before GS even grasped there was a problem. She is neglectful that is very true. Her habitual cry is ‘no one told me, I didn’t know’. She’s got this faux incompetence down to a fine art. She did ring Mum every day during lockdown if only for about 30 seconds of conversation but not one single call to me to see if there was anything she could do or how I was bearing up. Too much to ask.

We started to work on POA forms for Mum - well, at least I did - and GS immediate response was ‘did Mum have a will’. I know she did because I drove her to the appointment although we went into separate offices and I’ve no idea what’s in it [nor do I care]. She was supposed to do the health and welfare forms while I did the financial as Mum was adamant that she only wanted me as her financial POA. I asked GS about it and she did her usual trick ‘I didn’t have the forms! No one gave me the forms’. She’s obviously incapable of googling the thing, as everyone else does and finding the first link up takes you straight to the government website to either request the forms or download the blessed things.

I will make sure in future that I give Mum her meds. I can’t afford for GS to mess this up for her.

She pulled the hot water stunt before. She does sound deliberately useless. Does your Mum have any paid care as well as you? I think they would be a better alternative than your useless sister. She causes more stress than good. I know in a way it would feel like she had ‘won’ but it might be less stressful than having her involved.


To my way of thinking your sister has forfeited any right to have any influence on what care you provide mum with, or any alternative care you arrange. She is a liability, not an asset.
Take total control now. She hasn’t won anything, she is a scheming b****!
Now think about what YOU want to help you with your caring role. What job do you have most?
Cleaning tidying etc. just needs a cleaner, not you, for example. Mum’s Attendance Allowance should pay for this.