My father is a nice man who genuinely cares about people but is also controlling and verbally abusive when stressed/angry/sad/etc. Lately his health has been declining and is under quite a lot of stress due to poor finances and an never-ending stream of problems that simply build upon each other. He unfortunately cannot seem to settle down and stop worrying even though he needs to do so and has been told to by many (including myself). He is also very easily saddened, discouraged, angered, etc. and has always been even when in better health. My mom told me that my dad has always been like this even before they married each other. And when my dad gets like this no amount of reason will ever get through to him.
So lately he has been getting angry at me for no reason at all. He claims I am mistreating him and that I don’t love him. What he continues to fail to realize is that my sister and I have our own lives (I’m a student and she is a student/works quite a bit) and that we cannot be there for him at every turn, especially since our schedules don’t always allow for this. He unfortunately has few friends and they’re all far away from him. He spends most of his days alone and in his apartment when he’s not going to and from the hospital. But what is problematic here is that he insults me, belittles me, and continues to bring-up things from the past that were hurtful and which I seek to forget and move on-from (difficult when he’s constantly bringing them up over and over in what I see as an attempt to guilt me into something or attack me).
But at the same time he has no one else to help him through his problems other than my sister and I. But I’m getting to the point where I cannot take the abuse anymore. Again, he cannot be reasoned with when he’s like this. Yes he needs help but my self-esteem is low enough and this verbal abuse doesn’t help. I find that I can only spend time with him in moderation as extended periods with him don’t always work well (although lately it seems that most of our meetings in person are decent).
I don’t know what to do. Give him an ultimatum to get him to stop what he’s doing or cope with the verbal abuse?