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Caregivers: do you feel family/friends have "abandoned" you?


Karen.Lyn

  

30 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you feel family/friends have "abandoned" you?

    • No, not at all
      3
    • Somewhat
      4
    • Very much so
      23


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Curious. I have experienced this and was surprised to hear it from others - wondering how common this disgrace is, that people, after - even long after - a devastating loss decided not to visit or perhaps even keep in touch much if at all.

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Curious. I have experienced this and was surprised to hear it from others - wondering how common this disgrace is, that people, after - even long after - a devastating loss decided not to visit or perhaps even keep in touch much if at all.

Hello

My name is Derry and this is my first post.

I joined just minutes ago and THIS message struck a chord with me.

My care began in the Fall of 1994 when BOTH of my parents came home from the hospital on the SAME day.

Mother had a knee replacement and Daddy was coming home from ReHab after a stroke.

While my Dad's family was all deceased, my mother still had 7 sisters living....5 locally.

It was strange. They would call...offer to help whenever I needed it.....but was ALWAYS busy when I really needed them. (while I ran errands, etc.)

Dad died in Jan of 95....Mother's health was a roller coaster for about 12 years. I quit my job in fall of 2009 to care for her full time.

My SISTER that lived next door was JEALOUS that mother had the "special" attention that SHE so longed for......and NEVER helped me with mother.

I saw my sister 3 times in the last year....she lived next door....always an excuse to not come over. Sister passed away at end of March (age 75)

Mother passed on April 14 (age 95).

My 2 remaining brothers simply want to sell the house and divide the assets. I am now left without an income, no transportation, no health care for myself in over 5 years.....and must find a home by July 10.

Abandoned? Yes.....I feel abandoned.....very much so....but I still have my Cat!!!.....and fragments of my humor.....and God's Love...yeah, that.

*sigh*

Well..........Howdy Everyone! Guess I needed to vent a little....so sorry....I promise to keep it shorter in the future.

Love to All,

Derry

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While the results of vote surprise me somehow (that so many have felt abandoned) i truly believe that it is not because our relatives, friends are cruel...They just dont know how to cope themselves, they dont know what to say, how to behave...People dont want to live in discomfort and being with someone who has lost someone dear is so scary, because it reminds that no one is protected from that. And dont we ourselves somehow close down? Dont we just assume that others have to see our pain and help? Do we reach out for help? I dont put judgment to neither, it is as it is. But my experience is that the more i dare to become open and vulnerable, the more support i find around. And I also believe that everyone does the best they can in any given situation. Shall we have more compassion towards ourselves and those around - even if they dont help?

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Well..........Howdy Everyone! Guess I needed to vent a little....so sorry....I promise to keep it shorter in the future.

Certainly no need for apology and vent away any time. I feel confident in saying that's part of what this place for. As they say "you can't choose your family......" Sorry you had/are having such a bad experience.

While the results of vote surprise me somehow (that so many have felt abandoned)

Not me. The more I see/hear/read/etc the more I see this is shockingly common. What amazes me is this getting well over 300 looks and only 7 votes. ???
i truly believe that it is not because our relatives, friends are cruel...They just dont know how to cope themselves, they dont know what to say, how to behave
I'm sorry but what a poor excuse. How about something like: "hi I just wanted to see how you were holding up." Nobody is asking for magical insights or pearls of wisdom. The call itself is what matters, not so much what's said.
People dont want to live in discomfort and being with someone who has lost someone dear is so scary, because it reminds that no one is protected from that.
You'll excuse me if I don't break out the violin.
And dont we ourselves somehow close down? Dont we just assume that others have to see our pain and help?
I can only speak for myself in saying no, although I'm sure it applies to others. PS and I find that assumption a reasonable one. What they don't know? They think we just went "bummer" and moved on?
Shall we have more compassion towards ourselves and those around - even if they dont help?
For me, yes. For people I thought cared about me who abandon me? Sorry, no.
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Widower2,

i might be making an assumption, but it seems that anger, resentment, upset, pain is taking over in you. And that's ok to express it. I totally believe that feeling abandoned and not supported is how you felt, and it might be true from their perspective or not, but you cant change them, can you? The only thing you can change is how you react to that. You have the power to choose.

i do believe each of us does the best we can every moment. Have you tried to express your anger to those people who have left you without support, have they heard exactly how you feel? We are so different that from their perspective things might look different. But unless you directly ask, you dont know. And it takes courage to ask, but if we have been presented with situation of loosing someone, we have also been given inner resources to handle that.

Blessings,

Inga

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i do believe each of us does the best we can every moment.

I don't. In fact I'd bet my life on it because I see examples of it all the time (and I'm not immune by any means, btw).

I appreciate your reply and no offense, but I think my anger/etc is well founded and justified and I have no stomach for making excuses for inexcusable behavior. In fact, I think that's part of the problem: our society LOVES to make excuses and let everyone get away with inexcusable behavior (this goes well beyond the grief area) and is afraid to call a spade a spade or God forbid call people on it.

"Tolerance" has gone WAY too far.

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Widower, i hear you, and i do not justify people's indifference to other's pain, but we see the world through our eyes. What is intolerable for you, may not be such to other. So what will you do - kill them because they dont think as you do? Any attempts to change other people's thinking and behavior has failed throughout history. If you dont like something in your reality - change your inner world, the way you think and then observe the world around you change. Or - if it is more comfortable (and i bet it is for many, because we prefer what is uncomfortable and painful to something where we would need to change and any changy is so scary) for you, keep blaming them and calling for justice. The choice is yours.

Well wishes,

Inga

I don't. In fact I'd bet my life on it because I see examples of it all the time (and I'm not immune by any means, btw).

I appreciate your reply and no offense, but I think my anger/etc is well founded and justified and I have no stomach for making excuses for inexcusable behavior. In fact, I think that's part of the problem: our society LOVES to make excuses and let everyone get away with inexcusable behavior (this goes well beyond the grief area) and is afraid to call a spade a spade or God forbid call people on it.

"Tolerance" has gone WAY too far.

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No, frankly it's clear you don't hear me, ie you aren't really listening, or grasping the topic at hand for that matter, preferring instead to go on with this broad brushstroke nonsensical "inner enlightenment" spiel. Frankly it comes off quite condescending. I'm sorry for any losses you have endured but I doubt I'll be responding to you again.

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That's fine, Widower, you dont have to reply.

Im sorry if i sounded patronizing, that really was not my intention.

All the best to you!

No, frankly it's clear you don't hear me, ie you aren't really listening, or grasping the topic at hand for that matter, preferring instead to go on with this broad brushstroke nonsensical "inner enlightenment" spiel. Frankly it comes off quite condescending. I'm sorry for any losses you have endured but I doubt I'll be responding to you again.

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Yeah, no surprise there. Not the 1st time I've heard of the occasional at best family visiting, not only NOT giving the caregiver any time off, but extra chores to do , like forwarding mail, shopping for their houseguest visits, cooking for them. Not a surprise that they are now circling like vultures for their "rightful inheritance". Truthfully, sometimes the person you are caregiving for is remarkably rigid, and doesn't want to go anywhere or do anything, so even if family wants to take them away for a visit and off your hands, they wont go. Trust me on this: you need a good lawyer who is experienced in this type of situation. Whatever you do, don't trust in the family which ignored you and the situation for years. The brothers are not to be trusted and they can wear you down because you are probably shellshocked. You gave up so much of yourself, that you need time to decompress before making decisions. Get the lawyer to handle the practical. Your services over these years should be reimbursable. Amazing how so many parents kneecap the chosen one when he/she is still young, so there is someone to care for them when they become old and infirm. Then they make no provisions to care for this child in return, just trust on the siblings to divvy up the estate. They get to have full lives and an equal share of the estate. You get to give up vacations, your own home & income, prospects of a partner, everything you love but have no time for because you have no more than an hour or 2 at any given time (always a good chance of being pre-empted), and the same share as those who were free to live lives. Parents are short-sighted and selfish. Hug your cat (I have a dog, which has kept me in this world), and don your armor. You are fighting for your future against those who only care for the money. YOU should win for a change. Your post made me register to reply.

Hello

My name is Derry and this is my first post.

I joined just minutes ago and THIS message struck a chord with me.

My care began in the Fall of 1994 when BOTH of my parents came home from the hospital on the SAME day.

Mother had a knee replacement and Daddy was coming home from ReHab after a stroke.

While my Dad's family was all deceased, my mother still had 7 sisters living....5 locally.

It was strange. They would call...offer to help whenever I needed it.....but was ALWAYS busy when I really needed them. (while I ran errands, etc.)

Dad died in Jan of 95....Mother's health was a roller coaster for about 12 years. I quit my job in fall of 2009 to care for her full time.

My SISTER that lived next door was JEALOUS that mother had the "special" attention that SHE so longed for......and NEVER helped me with mother.

I saw my sister 3 times in the last year....she lived next door....always an excuse to not come over. Sister passed away at end of March (age 75)

Mother passed on April 14 (age 95).

My 2 remaining brothers simply want to sell the house and divide the assets. I am now left without an income, no transportation, no health care for myself in over 5 years.....and must find a home by July 10.

Abandoned? Yes.....I feel abandoned.....very much so....but I still have my Cat!!!.....and fragments of my humor.....and God's Love...yeah, that.

*sigh*

Well..........Howdy Everyone! Guess I needed to vent a little....so sorry....I promise to keep it shorter in the future.

Love to All,

Derry

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Curious. I have experienced this and was surprised to hear it from others - wondering how common this disgrace is, that people, after - even long after - a devastating loss decided not to visit or perhaps even keep in touch much if at all.

My friend, who moved to another State, is visiting her former State. We were friends and visited each others' homes. Now that I'm a time-limited caregiver, we are facebook friends. This is the second time she has come up to visit only an hour away from me, staying at a family rental. She is getting together with her high school friends, and doesn't want to see me. This is the second time she's done this. The first time I commented, and she just sounded exasperated, said she was only there for a short time to see family. This time? No family so far, they're all out at the Jersey Shore. I am thinking of blocking or unfriending her, or just hiding her posts. Yes, its common. I can name a couple people who have had this happen to them.

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My friends barely talk and never seem to have time for me and my kids. My brother, who has had a traumatic brain injury in tje last year rarely recieves visitors. He was very social and had tons of fb friends and real friends. Oddly the people that visit are older friends he hadn't seen in a while. I know people don't know what to say to either of us, especially him. That still doesn't make it ok for family to abandon him. I try and that's all i can do but that still doesn't stop me from being disappointed.

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I don't. In fact I'd bet my life on it because I see examples of it all the time (and I'm not immune by any means, btw).

I appreciate your reply and no offense, but I think my anger/etc is well founded and justified and I have no stomach for making excuses for inexcusable behavior. In fact, I think that's part of the problem: our society LOVES to make excuses and let everyone get away with inexcusable behavior (this goes well beyond the grief area) and is afraid to call a spade a spade or God forbid call people on it.

"Tolerance" has gone WAY too far.

Widower & MST make very good points. I was my husband's caregiver for 11 years, the only time his family saw him was to show up at the hospital with a wad of balloons and act like fools. Fortunately the hospital staff & doctors saw right thru this. It went downhill after that as the only time his children saw or called him was to hit him up for money.

The grand finale was his daughter meeting me at the funeral home waving a copy of the will with her husband announcing how much they were entitled too, and blowing off the arrangements. I had been trying to be considerate and asking their input. ( I'm a idiot!)

Bad behavior IS too easily excused and shouldn't be! Derry please don't expect people to "do right" by you! You WILL have to stand up for yourself! A lawyer is paid to be YOUR advocate, and can deal with any unpleasantness from relatives.

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Sorry to hear this. It's amazing how much slime there is in the world, isn't it? But I think people tend to get what they deserve and it evens out in the end, so hang in there and try to keep that in mind.

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LOL Widower! I don't really have the patience for "karma". Found out a few days ago by finding a receipt that my OWN daughter had stolen her step-father's silver coins and sold them. Tomorrow morning I'm off to go press charges. My husband was nothing but kind & generous to her!

I'm not entirely sure when the world decided I was a victim, but it stops now! The word "abandonment" doesn't really begin to cover this crap.

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I'm starting to hate my friends. I decided I won't call them next until they call me. I can't be bothered anymore and if they never call me again which I see likely or by the time they do it'll be too late b/c I really don't care anymore. I'm at that point. I figure if my friends couldn't be there for me at my WORST point then why do I need them at all? After all isn't that what friends are suppose to be for? Maybe I'm just resentful. I don't know, but one thing I know for sure is I'm angry about it. I've been having thoughts like just wait till you lose a parent or have to care give and then I feel terrible that I even thought that! Because I wouldn't wish grief or care giving on anyone. I guess it seems that's the only way they'll ever truly understand how I feel. I feel like friends stop calling because I have nothing to talk about other than my parents because all I ever really do is work and help care take my mom. I lost my Dad 8 months ago and my sister and I have been co-care giving for BOTH of our parents for the last 10 years. And we're young only in our 30s and 40s now so it all started in our 20 and 30s. So while all our friends forged ahead with their lives meaning got married, had children, established careers while my sister and I sacrificed all of that, and it wasn't always easy, to take care of our parents. My parents were late bloomers :) so we had much older parents than our friends. I just don't think we relate anymore. I do still have single friends and I think they are the worst, just self-absorbed with living their own life.

Anyway sorry for the long vent, but thanks for reading. I'm sorry that we all have to be here and for all of your pain.

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I can't say that my husband or I was abandoned. My husband refused to let me tell anyone about his condition so only our closest friends had any idea. And I don't think I could have got through this without them. After my husband passed, I made all the calls to his family. My step daughter helped with all the arrangements and Andy's brother came up from California to help out. I got calls from people I hadn't heard from in years, including friends who are living in Australia.

My step daughter and some of our close friends still check up on me to make sure I'm all right. I'm not. But I feel better knowing there are people who still care.

Karen

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