autism

Dealing with Ageing Parents

Do your parents say or do things like this?

      You want to put me in a home?                                                                                                                                                                                         When rearending four cars; it wasn’t my fault they stopped to fast!                                                                                                                             The trashcan jumped out in front of me.                                                                                                                                                                           The curb was too close to the street.                                                                                                                                                                               Won’t take a cab; even though they can darn well afford it?                                                                                                                                           Leaves water running over in a bathroom sink for an hour and does damage to areas of carpet in four rooms?                                                     Leave milk out or other cold items for hours?                                                                                                                                                                 Other forgetful indicators of dementia of some sort?                                                                                                                                                     Has a personality change; either becomes really negative or sweet sweet?

Here is a letter I wrote to my sister in a journal but never gave her.

       

        Dear Sister: 
        I know you love mom.  You are an angel.  You have been in some ways more of a mother to me than mom sometimes.  You want to               mother everyone, including my son Tanner. You are warn out.  I know you are working on getting mom help.  Sister it is okay to give up.         Setting boudaries is okay.  Or, but mom in assisted living for a while until the medication either works or doesn’t work.  You are showing         signs of being worn out.
        I know you don’t ask more of me than I can give. At one point I would have drained myself like you are.  I realize now that I can no longer         drain myself and take care of an autistic son.  Plus, ______(husband…fell at work needs knee surgery but ended up with Deep Vein                   Thombosis, and Pulmonary Emboli…but God saw these were caught and he is alive…with filter in place to catch clots) needs specia                 attention.  I also have been sick with high fevers over the last two years.  The only thing showing up is high C-Reactive protein and                   cortisol levels; indicating stress.  Well now that I have gone 2 months with only two fevers and one sinus infection; I am exercising and             committed to preserving this break in my health.
        The bottom line is I can help but not on the level mom needs.  Sister, I can’t tell you what to do. I can tell you that none of us are                       equipped to help 24/7.  Or, total to fill in the holes.  You have a job.  I don’t want you to carry such a burden.  Think about what I have               said.  You are a loving carring person but overloading yourself may make you not able to be there down the road when mom may need           us further.  
       We have tried to get her to go and get medication that would help her to stay in her home. If being in assisted living would help until                  medication or a solution would help….that would be great.  However, I am worried she may be unsafe by herself.  Unless she agrees to           having help come in a couple of days a week and going to adult daycare 2 days a week; I feel she must be placed in assisted living.                 However, my sister is in charge.
 
My therapist has taught me about boundaries.  She uses the airplane analogy about parents putting on your oxygen mask first before placing it on small children. If a parent isn’t breathing; they cannot help their child(ren) effectively.  The same goes for helping their parents.
 
Here are some resources that should be helpful for caregivers and some specific to elderly.
 
 
 http://www.caregiving.org/data/Emblem_CfC10_Final2.pdf   
 

http://www.dshs.wa.gov/pdf/Publications/22-277.pdf   

Remember by setting boundaries you take care of yourself which allows you to care for those you care give

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