The Ghost Sister strikes again

Mum finally came home today. I’m really glad she’s come home but of course now we have the wrangle as to who is doing what. Day one and already I’m struggling with my temper.

I was held up a bit this morning en route to meet up at Mum’s a do a last minute do over. SHE was standing in the car park like I’d kept her waiting for hours with the one item she’d bothered to arrange. Then she proceeded to sit on her bum the whole morning while I hurtled around sorting out. She has this ‘feigned incompetence’ down to a fine art now.

Then when I mentioned I hadn’t managed to sort out the Lifeline thingy yet she had the nerve to say ‘Oh I thought you’d have had that sorted by now’. Since Mum went in I have been in and out of her house, moving furniture [disabled myself but there you go], climbing up and down putting up curtains, replacing books, dvds and ornaments, sorting out clothes for her while in hospital and doing the resultant laundry, sourcing various bits of kit for her, being in attendance when the OT wanted to bring some stuff for her, working 8 hours then spending 2 hours with Mum of an evening before trotting home to sort out and spend some time with our animals by which time I’m far too tired to have an appetite so I don’t bother with an evening meal. She, meanwhile has spent just about an hour with Mum and gone down the pub. She’s also been away for 10 days which she didn’t bother to mention until the night before they left.

She’s now having to do her bit and spend alternate nights at Mum’s and I can already see it falling to bits. Mum doesn’t like her there, she argues with Mum and patronises her. There is likely to be WW3 by the time I get back there tomorrow.

I’m thinking of setting up an ISA to save towards the bail money I’m going to need before we are done.

What care did the hospital arrange? Mum was entitled to 6 weeks enablement care! Back off and look after yourself now. It’s sink or swim time for her now.

You need to find another occupational therapist. Preferably one who is kind. Find an occupational therapist RCOTSS-IP
Use the search box to filter out results based on age/need.

Most of Mum’s reablement support team have been gems I’m glad to say. It just twangs a nerve when someone bitches about a minor glitch when you’ve been running yourself ragged to get so far. I can’t do everything but you are left feeling that it is all your fault over a dozen or more minor issues especially when your so-call co-carer is about as much help as a fart in a spacesuit.

I got in from work yesterday and before I even got my coat off I was met with a litany of things she could have sorted herself including the bathroom fan [just needed someone to use the step stool for a millisecond to switch it on at the mains plug] the state of the knickers she put out for Mum to change into [Never bothered to do a stitch of laundry the entire time Mum was inside] and a problem with the shopping order I had arranged. It was like a complete barrage. Then today she wanted to know what bus she’d need to get to Mum’s - this was for one of her sons who is quite old enough to know to look on t’internet for
this kind of thing. What am I now? Karnak the Obscure?

Short post. Your Mum knows who she can trust That is you and not the useless Sister, maybe ask your Mum to tell the useless Sister how disappointed she is in her…

My Mum despises my little Sister to the point she doesn’t want her in the house!!!


the cynic in me, wonders if your sister is being so incompetent in helping in the hope that you take over and she doesn’t have to carry on helping out. A bit like some of my friends who complain their husbands make such a mess cooking, it’s just not worth it and so take over and 20 years later all the cooking, washing up etc is down by the wife …

However, it could just be that she isn’t used to thinking on her feet - maybe her husband does all the practical things at home like working out why the computer won’t come on - it’s not switched on at the wall etc If she is car driver, she probably doesn’t have a clue about buses etc I’m not making excuses for her, she is just on a steep learning curve.

Although frustrating, try not to engage too much with all the agro;
complaining about the switch on the heater - “Well, you’ll know for next time.”
Complaining about the shopping; “If you prefer, you (sister) can do the shopping in person and decide what is best.”
Re the pants, “yes, she has run out of her best ones, could you put the wash on tomorrow/ buy her some more.”
Easier said than done, I know …

I agree with BB, she should have a free care package in place as she has just been discharged from hospital.


Don’t let sister get away with this, she’s trying to be useless on purpose. The more you do the less she has to do.
Pants? “Could you buy some more on your way here…”
Switch on heater - did you ask mum?
Someone on the forum talks about a Teflon Raincoat, so everything falls off it, rather like a duck’s back.
Shopping order? Definitely get sister to do it in future, so that she can get it right all the time.

I know it’s difficult not rising to the bait, but you can do it.

Teflon raincoat is just about the best word for it. My GS has always managed to dodge any sort of responsibility unfortunately. It’s been a life long problem. Feigned incompetence. She seems to be of the opinion only she has any sort of life. I should be used to it by now considering her extensive history of dodging the bullet. The problem is that I can’t take up the slack as I did. I have my own health worries and although I am determined to help Mum in any way I can but my reserves of energy are more limited than previously.

I can see me losing it and saying things better kept to myself.

Is that actually long overdue?
Have you always thought that it was best to say nothing, or that she was in some way more important than you?

Maybe have some counselling first, so your counsellor can help you work out what to say, and how to do this. I think revenge, or anything like it, is “best served cold”!

It is LONG overdue to be honest. Our family motto seems to be ‘least said, soonest mended’. :unamused:

My nickname as a child was Vesuvius because I had such a temper and I was never one for a controlled explosion unfortunately. I’m nervous of letting rip once I start and all sorts of ancient history will come out.

Me, I wouldn’t care if I never saw the idle mare again but I can’t manage Mum’s support on my own. If she’s called on her behaviour the GS is likely to waft off never to be seen again.

Perhaps getting some counselling advice might be a sound idea. Finding the time for it may be a bit difficult though.

Mum should be having all the care she needs arranged for her, as she is just out of hospital.
What are you having to do that the carers provided won’t? Does she need more care than she is getting at the moment?

Mum has ‘reablement’ carers coming in. They are meant to encourage her to do what she used to do before the fall and the hip replacement. Mum has a bit of Stockholm Syndrome and is struggling to adapt to the outside world. She’s got used to stuff being brought to her etc and now she’s being encouraged to do for herself she isn’t very keen. She’s inclined to make out she’s forgotten where the tea things are and what not. It is possible, of course, that she has forgotten. I’ve tried to encourage her as much as possible but GS comes in and Mum’s willingness to give stuff a try goes out the window.

My mum is on week four of enablement carers, started off with three a day and has been cut down to one a day in the morning. She too has struggled with the idea of doing things for herself again, sometimes it’s difficult to work out whether she really can’t to things due to a much reduced mobility since hip fracture and a month in hospital, or whether she just prefers to wait until I turn up to do things for her. She seems ten times worse mobility wise since being discharged from hospital.


She seems ten times worse mobility wise since being discharged from hospital.

Mmmm … a potential unsafe hospital discharge ?

Care plan … recovery on schedule ???

Occupational therapist … what’s their view ?

If the reablement care provided isn’t enough, then have you asked for more?
In some circumstances the Care Act makes it clear that it can be provided for longer than 6 weeks, so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!


Care after illness or hospital discharge (reablement)

If you or someone you know has been in hospital or had an illness or fall, you may need temporary care to help you get back to normal and stay independent.

This temporary care is called intermediate care, reablement or aftercare.

Most people receive this type of care for around 1 or 2 weeks, although it can be free for a maximum of 6 weeks. It will depend on how soon you are able to cope at home.

If you need care for longer than 6 weeks, you’ll have to pay for it.

Care after illness or hospital discharge (reablement) - NHS

Thank you for your support everyone. I’m trying not to be too much of a helicopter and encouraging Mum to do for herself and she does seem to be picking up. I think the problem to a certain extent is that while in hospital everything was done for her and she thinks she has forgotten everything. Now we are coaxing her to make her own tea and do her own sandwiches she seems a little brighter. GS is still wafting about being completely useless.

I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop - she and her partner will probably be disappearing off for another holiday in a couple of weeks leaving me holding the baby. If it’s like last time she’ll mention it very late on a Friday with her due to bog off on the Saturday morning.