I Need Your Input Please

mimi427October 29, 2005

I'm sitting here, doing a slow burn, and really not sure how to respond; I'd love some thoughts from my friends here. As most of you know, my mom lived with me for the past year. Three week's ago, she moved to my sister's home. Tonight, I get an email from my sister asking me and my other sister if we would commit to "a couple of days" NEXT AUGUST, because a group of their friends are going to Ireland for ten days and she needs to put down a NONrefundable deposit. She feels she cannot ask my mom's aide to be there day and night for ten days, so if me and my other sister would each take a couple of days, actually the aide would be there during the day, when we work, and then we'd go there and spend the night. We'd also have Sat nite and Sunday, and Sunday night.

I guess I'm upset for several reasons. First,I barely got any help from either of my sisters when mom was with me. It wasn't until mom had been with me for six months, and I was about to lose it and finally had to ask my sister did she agree to take mom overnight. Then, two month's later, again, I was ready to lose it, and had to ask again and she agreed to a weekend. Here we are, just three week's and she's planning a ten day trip and wants us to commit to something that is TEN MONTH'S AWAY. I don't see how I can feel comfortable committing to something that is ten month's away. I don't want to be responsible for them losing their deposit. Besides, I guess my nose is a bit out of joint because I was left to take care of mom on my own 24/7 for the first six months, untl she took mom one nite. Am I not seeing this clearly?

In addition, she's been to Ireland before with this group.

Also, this is a large group, about 20 people. Wouldn't you think if she explained to the travel agent her situation, having her mom living with them who has Alzheimer's and not really being able to plan ten month's in advance they just might waive the "NON"-refundable deposit? I mean, with that many people traveling, and having put together many of these trips previously for this group, I would think the travel agent would be willing to bend a bit. I don't know, maybe I'm just not seeing this clearly because I'm pretty upset right now. I'd sure appreciate your thoughts,


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No they probably won't waive the deposit, that's what travel insurance is for.

Tell your sister you can't go through that again. She can easily hire an aide for the night shift, most home health aide agencies have 8 or 12 hour shifts, it shouldn't be a problem, and you and your sister can visit in the evenings for a few hours.

Don't throw your past experience back at here, she doesn't care and it won't help the situation. Just smile and say you don't want to care for your mom again 24/7, even for 10 days. Explain that it's too stressful, it certainly won't be a vacation for you or your sister and present some options. And most importantly, STICK TO YOUR GUNS.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2005 at 12:43AM
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My guess is that she's not going to be able to handle your mother for ten more months. So maybe the problem would be solved by then anyway. Suggest that she investigate respite care for two weeks at a Nursing Home. It may be that would work out so well, that she would decide that's the place for her to be. I wonder if she knew about this trip when she decided that she wanted to keep your mother. Tell her NO and stick to it.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2005 at 6:55AM
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She said she "just found out" about the trip, but this is a group that goes away every year together, usually to Europe...they're avid golfers...all but my sister - her hubby's the golfer, but she goes just to go and the shopping. In any case, this is no surprise, as I said, they've gone every year for at least the past 6 or 7 years, and always in August.
You said what I was thinking...bottom line, we can't predict what will be in ten month's; where mom will be, where we will be with our own health. In just 11 months, I know now what happened to my own health, how much I declined and I'm still not back to where I was -- well, it's only been 3 weeks.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2005 at 9:54AM
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Mimi, you gave me some wonderful advice before -- what goes around comes around. i agree with everyone else, don't give in. it's a shame though that your mom is in the middle. i guess your dear sister will have to look into respite care or maybe offer your mom's aide a bonus to look after your mom. i personally do not make any plans more than 2 days in advance, because from experience things change here from day to day and not to mention from hour to hour. right now it's your own health that you should be worried about, your are tired and stressed abd need to get yourself back on track. i know what it's like i do it all for 24/7 and while my mil has had this pace maker put in and has been at home for 2 weeks, she says she cannot plug in a kettle, or even open a jar, however she did go shopping the other day. Mimi, like you i am soooo tired so i do know how you feel right now, so stick to your guns! debbie

    Bookmark   October 30, 2005 at 10:52AM
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I'll play devils advocate here.
If when you were caring for her, you had taken time for yourself, once or twice a year for a week or two, you might be healthier for it. Do not blame you sister for taking care of herself, on the other hand, it is your right to say, hey I am glad you are doing this, wish I had done it that way, but my health right now will not let me be the caregive-figure out another way and tell her you are glad that she is taking care of herself and Mom. There are lots of ways (many already mention in the other posts). Mom may not like it, but Tough as I use to say to my kids or anyone else that complained.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2005 at 7:24PM
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Families have to work together in these kinds of situations. Getting your mother cared for and giving your sister the break she will need by then is in the best interests of all. Lots of good suggestions above. Maybe financial is the way you can help. Derry

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 5:59PM
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