My mother is 85 and in the advanced stages of Parkinson’s - has had it for years now. My dad, also 85, is taking care of her and my 56-year-old sister lives at home with them (and has her whole life). Sis is an artist, doesn’t make enough to live on, and has retreated from the world so much that now she doesn’t want to drive or go anywhere except to the grocery store (with my dad) or answer the door. She used to work outside the home, date, even went to college for a while, but won’t do anything now. She isn’t really painting that much any more, either.
Mom sleeps most of the day, can’t read or do anything any more and just sits in a chair when she is awake, isn’t very responsive. My dad is in good health for his age, but he spends most of his time taking care of my mom and I know he’s tired out. Their house is a mess, full of stuff (a lot of it belongs to Sis and my other Sis, who lives in another city 3 hours away and has a hoarding addiction - but that’s another story).
I live 7 1/2 hours away and see them about twice a year. I just came back from visiting them last week and am very concerned about them. I think Dad is in denial about Mom’s condition, and Sis cooks and does laundry but is an emotionally needy person and I think that furthers the burden on Dad.
I just found out that Dad and Sis go to the grocery store together and leave Mom at home by herself - I told Dad I didn’t think that was a good idea. The day after I left, Dad went somewhere and left Sis with Mom. Sis was supposed to wake Mom to give her a pill, but she couldn’t revive her. Instead of calling 911 (there is a hospital within half a mile of their house), she called my Dad (who was 20 miles away). My dad came home and managed to revive her, but he admitted he thought at first that she might be dead.
Since I can’t get my dad to listen to me, I e-mailed my brothers to ask them if they could persuade Dad to get a home health care aide to come in and help. I also expressed my concern over the growing clutter and dirtiness of their house, and someone to help with that. One of my brothers basically belittled my concerns and pretty much made me feel that I was overly critical and putting my nose where it didn’t belong, although he didn’t say so in so many words. I took a deep breath and decided that I am going to just put this in God’s hands, as I have been trying to do for months now, and stop trying to rouse others to action.
Please pray for my mom, and for my dad, and that my family will not totally explode when my mother passes away, which is another thing nagging at me. God bless.