My Dad collapsed Christmas Day 2021, at the hospital he was diagnosed with vascular dementia and placed into a care home. When he was admitted the consultant at the hospital told me we’d be lucky if he lasted six months but here were are 18 months later with no sign of anything imminent. Its a weird sort of limbo in that he is in a constant deep sleep, I rarely see him awake, and when I do he has no clue who I am, so its like you’ve already lost the parent and dealt with that and you’re just waiting for the inevitable. That side of things has thankfully been relatively straightforward apart from the never ending funding meetings, council meetings, NHS meetings, reviews etc
The bigger problem is my Mum. When this first started all the advice I could find was don’t visit every day as it will take over your life but of course she’s doing exactly that. She decided she would go Monday to Friday and I would go Saturdays. When we were looking at 6 months maximum that seemed manageable from my perspective but now not so much. My life is basically working Monday to Friday, I get back from work too late to have much of a life in the evening, then Saturdays at the home and Sundays at my Mums. If there’s ever a hint I will miss a Saturday she makes it clear she will go that day as well.
She won’t do anything for herself, to the point that she recieves letters and emails and says ‘I’ve had a mail from the council’ for example and when I ask her what about it get ‘I don’t know, I left it for you’. Every week there’s a list of jobs, normally things that don’t really need doing or things she’s created.
She’s insisting on staying in a house that is far too big for her, it was too big for two of them let alone one, that she increasingly can’t manage. I’m struggling to find time to get stuff done with my own house let alone having another to look after.
It’s hard to explain because a lot of it is passive aggressive, she always leaves herself a get out in case it’s ever bought up as an issue. Obviously most people will be reading this thinking I need to have a serious discussion with her but that’s impossible, as soon as I start to talk about any subject she doesn’t want to discuss she just shuts down and says I’m shouting at her when I’m just trying to have a conversation.
I feel like I have no life at the moment and every day I try and arrange to do anything it’s needlessly stressful and leads to feelings of guilt that I’m having a day doing something myself rather than running round after her.
She has zero social life, turns down all requests from friends to meet up, turns down any suggestion of going to local groups or anything to get her out of the house yet constantly complains she sees nobody and doesn’t do anything.
I don’t know where to go from here. Both her parents lived well into their 90s and she’s got no health issues at all so I’m potentially looking at up to 20 years of this which is a terrifying prospect. Not even got any siblings or other family to share the load with. My mental health wasn’t the best before this but it’s terrible now. It really does feel like not having a life and no prospect of that changing anytime soon.
Not sure if there’s any solution to this or if I’m just venting hoping someone else has been in the same situation and might have something to be optimistic about.