MY ELDERLY PARENT REFUSES HELP
MY ELDERLY PARENT REFUSES HELP
You beg. You try to convince. You scream and even cry. Sometimes you want to just pull your hair out and yell “My elderly parent refuses help…I give up!” But don’t give up just yet. When an elderly parent resists help that you know will help them be more safe, it can be the most frustrating thing for adult children. When your aging parent refuses a caregiver, or your elderly parent is resistant to moving to an assisted living, or stopping driving, what are you supposed to do? In this video I’m going to discuss 4 things that you need to consider when your elderly parent refuses help or to make a change.
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Thanks for this video 💕😇
Agree with this video, but the problem is if you’re the responsible child then you’ll be picking up the pieces when everything falls apart. It puts you in a situation of either turning your head because of your parent’s (possibly bad) choices OR just waiting until the s**t hits the fan and then having to do additional work because your parent refused to be proactive and make changes ahead of time.
Thank you. This is SO HARD!!
My EXCAT problem
Would it be a good or bad idea to show this to my grandparent? She needs somebody else to hear it she won’t believe me but I do live with her and I do Over Watch her and make sure she doesn’t hurt herself in her daily life. She gave some kids $60 for shoveling to the driveway, and just way overpays people in general and I cannot help her manage her money when I offered to do it for free
i have no family help. my mothers other daughter always did minimum. she puts her family first and has no respect for my time
Thank you —
Oh my goodness this was very helpful!!!! God bless you and thank you!!
Thanks for this. Even if I can’t get her to change, I’ll feel better about the situation
Narcissist parents r the ones that make it difficult so look that up if u r having trouble. Its 730am i havent slept a wink.
The only time I’ve ever heard of someone complaining about their parent refusing a nursing home is when they want their assets.
Hubby don’t like strange ppl in home only me ( Wife)
I’m dealing with terrible stress and now health issues because my parents both are older and in bad health , can’t do anything around the huge 3,000 square foot house anymore and I’m stuck taking care of them but they won’t downsize and move to a smaller one level place. I’m 50 years old now and the house is in bad shape, filthy and full of junk everywhere in it. It took me 3 years to get them to do their wills and now it’s been taking me even longer to convince them the time to move is now. The stress is killing me big time and I don’t know what else to do. I’m the one who has the responsibility of handling this house when time comes to do so and I want to deal with it all now, not later down the road when I won’t physically be able to do anything anymore. I need some good advice on what I should do.
Help! I need help getting my mother out of our home and into assisted living or a nursing home that can help my mother. She is a complete danger to our home if not watched and to herself. Help!
What if the parents have mild-moderate dementia where there is no reasoning?
I like elderly people should pair up for comfort to stay in their homes!
Something you touched on is so important and needs to be really looked at, changed, or something. It’s about Adult Protective Services. First, I need to tell you a little about my dad. He’s an abusive narcissist hoarder. Before he lost his home, it was a horror. No electricity worked, rats chewed through the wires, no refrigeration, heating, air conditioning, and junk piled to the ceiling with small paths through them. Floors were falling through in areas. This all spilled to the outside of the home and covered 2 full acres. On top of that, he has MS and diabetes, and is in his early 70s and literally sometimes has to crawl from the living to his bed. He is also mentally ill, and said that one of his grandchildren planned to shoot and kill him. I heard that conversation and it’s not even close to true. He’s burned all his bridges, of course and now he’s living in a travel trailer in a park and the living conditions are already just as bad as in the house he was in. So, my mom (who is separated from him and lives with me, the "scapegoat") and my sister have both tried to help him to hire someone to do repairs, cleanup, and eventually suggested retirement home. All of these things he refuses to this day. He refuses all senior resources like Meals on Wheels and transportation, etc. We have called Adult Protective Services (the point of my post), and they went out to talk to him and give him pamphlets, telling him resources and help available to him, etc. And he listened and they left but of course, my dad just throws it in the garbage, refusing help.
Here’s the problem I have with Adult Protective Services and why I am so grateful for your video. They were NO HELP to us. They were simply too focused on "he has his rights to live how he wants"… I said "But he owns several guns and he’s mentally ill, and afraid his grandson wants to kill him! Isn’t there SOMETHING we can do based on that for safety of others, himself?" they said the only thing we can do is take him to court to get conservatorship but that it’s expensive and hard to do. This didn’t come from just one visit and team that went out to his house, it came from THREE. The same thing…. there is simply nothing we can do. Our dad lost all the money he had and then out of the blue sold his house without anyone knowing for pennies on the dollar for what it was worth, not giving any of us a chance to at least buy it and turn it over. But, that’s beside the point except to say that there is no money left for the court that APS said we need. Nothing. We’re left with only one option. Take his abuse to get him to his doctors appointments and to bring him food and take a verbal pounding while doing it. That’s IT!! And, as Wayne Dryer has said "allowing yourself to be abused is an act of abuse". Seriously, he is VERY verbally abusive. The one person that takes it well is my poor mom. And, I know that with things how they are and the experience I’ve had with Enablers Anonymous, is that she is probably hurting him more than helping him by helping him at all. BUT, in your video you gave options I didn’t know about and I am definitely going to make calls. So I want you, and others to know just how unhelpful APS is to families in situations like this. (or, how they CAN be, I’m sure that some are more helpful than our experiences with them, somewhere). And I think this needs to be addressed. I’m going to write some letters and do what I can, but I wanted to get this out there. Thank you so much for your wonderful advice, it’s just what we needed!
The stress and frustration is unbearable.
Joanna Ibanez Kauai Hawaii
Thank you for your suggestions. I’m really struggling here…
Thank you for pointing out that incompetency according to the law is a very different thing than ‘incompetency’ according to relatives that are often bored, busybody perfectionists that overlook similar shortcomings in themselves.
This comment is not intended for situations in which a person does need care for safety reasons. Some families do go hard after a person at the first long term health issue, and at any age.
Quit being mean and impatient! Remember one day you will be old and in need of help. Now an elder formerly the nurse, case manager, ombudsman, advocate etc etc …. I now find myself afraid of youthful impatient people who over react, push elders to be faster and more able. Many are bullies. Even doing all possible to plan for aging in place….someone young is always lurking to criticize . Even doing my best to minimize asking for help has not worked to eliminate feeling like a pest.
I think I might fall into the "waited too long" category. I’ve left voice messages for several elder care agencies this morning to get advice on how to get help for my parents-no return calls yet. Out of complete desperation, my mom asked me to pick up her prescriptions yesterday as she had been out of her meds for almost a week. My stepdad is very ill with terminal cancer and my mom is his caregiver. They both appeared to be in very poor condition, physically, when I visited yesterday.
They have socially isolated themselves for years prior to the pandemic. It’s probably been a decade since they had any visitors to their house aside from me, and I’m only allowed to stand at the front door, no one is allowed to enter the home. My mom is mortified of their hoarding issues, is partially disabled and is now having trouble with things like fixing meals and bathing. Her clothes were all ripped up thanks to a puppy my mom decided to adopt about 6 months ago. It’s a german shepherd puppy, and it is completely untrained and is presenting a huge hazard to their safety. She has said that the dog has tripped her before. I suspect the puppy was a way to have an excuse to keep them living in the house. I can hear my mom now, "I can’t move to a little apartment with a big dog! The dog has to have a yard!" 😣
I did get eyes on my stepdad, he looked terrible, but was awake and able to stand up to say hello. He did not participate in the conversation, and I suspect that two years of chemo have left him mentally impaired. Both of their cars are broken down now, so they are completely dependent on delivery services for groceries. They haven’t taken the trash to the curb since last September. I don’t know where they are storing all their garbage, but they are definitely storing it somewhere in the house.
I’m one sibling of 6, and the other 5 kids are estranged. A part of me wants to just pretend everything is fine, they are adults who can make their own decisions. There’s another part of me that knows that I’m the one who will have to deal with any aftermath of a crisis and would really prefer to avert that crisis first. I suppose that is selfish of me to want them to bend to my will for my comfort. I think I’m going to have to get some authorities involved, but I wish there was another way.
I’ve been using "I" statements when talking about helping them move to a safer home, but it doesn’t matter. My mom, who is in control of everything–money, access, medical care, etc.– keeps pretending that everything will be better soon and she’ll just take care of getting them moved into an apartment herself. She’s had magical thinking for as long as I can remember, but this just seems beyond the pale for what she says she thinks is going to happen moving forward. "When [stepdad] is better…" is how most of our conversations go when talking about me helping them move.
Sorry for the novel length comment. I have friends who have had to help their parents transition to senior living, but in those cases, the parents were in agreement that help was needed. My mom, however, is waiting for Jesus to show up and make everything perfect for her. I wonder, though, if Jesus –in the flesh– showed up, if she would accept his help? Probably not…
What is the median age of folks caring for their elderly parent? Why aren’t there more comments? I’m 58 years old and use you tube all the time. Is the reason their are no comments is because the age of most caregivers is much older and they are not internet savvy?
So glad to find support on your channel . My mom is 87 with a hip problem , but can still get around some . But I can see she’s going to be impossible to deal with . She has never even taken out medicare because she doesn’t want any medical treatments ever , but that leaves me not knowing what to do in an emergency and not getting any help for her when the time comes that she can’t do anything for herself. She doesn’t want anyone in her home but me , but I can’t do it all because I already have a problem with one arm .
Stop fighting it! But that doesn’t mean stop caring. What can you do when your parent refuses help?
In a lot of cases though it’s not that they refuse help, they just expect YOU to be that help at all costs.
My dad is utterly alone and for the most part has himself to blame for it.
It didn’t seem to be a problem while he was healthy ( which he kept a strict regiment to be),
Working ( successful construction company he built from the ground up), and independent( Beautiful two-story lakefront home).
But six years ago when he was in his mid-70s he was plagued with an overwhelming amount of health problems. Caught a bad flu, which turned to pneumonia, shortly after diagnosed with an auto immune disease, and to top all that off was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma.
It was a lot to take, for both of us. To see the once invincible man I knew my whole life be reduced to a shuffling skeleton was a hard pill to swallow. I knew if he lost his independence he was finished so I’ve done everything in my power since then to give him the space to make his own decisions and treat him like an adult. Which isn’t easy to do when the person you’re trying to help lives in the middle of nowhere, down a 3 mile dirt road, 25 minutes from the nearest town, and an hour at least from most dr appointments.
And just like before his stubbornness, temper, and selfishness has become absolutely unbearable. The same traits that drove my brother ( only sibling) to the other side of the country with minimal contact, contributed in part to my mothers raging alcoholism and later suicide, and has driven off almost every other friend and family member. When I say I’m doing it alone I mean it. Drive him to his specialists.
Put all his bills on auto pay and keep an eye on his accounts. Maintenance the house and yard. Move the boat dock when the lake levels rise and fall. Cook for him when I can because if not it will be a crap TV dinner. Cover for him with the doctors on the multiple times he’s been admitted to the hospital by saying that I’ll be with him 24/7 when I know I can’t. Have changed diapers, bandaged wounds, administered oxygen, and wiped his drooling lip more times than I can count.
His living situation is not safe. He still tries to drive and it’s not safe. Almost everything he attempts to do is not safe. I am in a constant state of worry and stress when I’m not with him, and when I am with him I’m in a constant state of frustration and angst.
He’s my dad and I love him but when is enough enough? He’s currently in the hospital with pneumonia again, aspirating food which could be a feeding tube situation, is definitely going to need oxygen, and also had an acute heart attack which means surgery is in the future. He was barely capable of working his flip phone properly and now this. The doctors, as they always do, are inching him back to a stable state and are talking about releasing him next week. He is already talking about “ when I get out and get back to the house we’re gonna need to…” and I’m about ready to scream. His location makes any kind of home health assistance a brief glimpse or nonexistent. Getting him into a rehab after hospital visits it’s like pulling teeth with insurance. And my family “ I’m so sorry you have to deal with this” is about as good as it gets.
I have a wife and three kids. A full-time job and a house payment. Coach youth soccer and volunteer hours at the school. A multitude of responsibilities and people depending on me that I have put on the back burner a lot of times and put my life on hold so he can have just a little bit more of his…..his way.
That’s what brought me here and I hope I can manifest some of this information into something positive. My mom‘s alcoholism I witnessed as a child made me vow as an adult that my kids would never see me drunk, and they haven’t. This situation as an adult has made me vow when/if I become a senior citizen I will never put any of my kids through this. And besides my wonderful and understanding wife the only place I have to talk about it is the emptiness of an online comment section.
Ain’t that something.
My 93 year old mother has Alzheimers stage 4-5 and has lived alone for 31 years since my dad died. Mother is one stubborn woman and still fiercely independent. She has carers for one hour per day, a home hairdresser, cleaner and chiropodist services. Mother has now reached the stage where her safety and welfare are compromised by her stoic and relentless stubborness to receive help. She refuses to let her carer perform simple household tasks by insisting she can do them herself, or will do it later. Mother refuses to wear hearing aids,glasses or use a walking stick. She is deaf and becoming incontinent. She will not tolerate any wearable safety or emergency devices,saying she doesn’t need them. Mother cannot use a microwave or oven and relies on a paltry diet of a few steamed vegetables, cold meat, toast and a multitude of biscuits.
Adult Social Care Services have now been involved and mother is starting a new care package which will help her to become more involved in daily tasks, thus allowing her to salvage some independence.
This is mother’s 3rd set of Carers and if she fails to comply this time, she will be placed in a Care Home because there is no other solution.
My mother has advancing dementia & I am in end stage kidney failure but she refuses to she how sick I am (I have a caregiver) & weigh 82lbs & then being left alone w her for over 6 or 7 hours & not safe for either of us but other family members won’t do anything about getting caregiver services?
At this point, I have no control over my older brothers lack of calling in anyone & I am physically & mentally unable to do it 🥲!!
Your post spoke directly to our situation and your suggestions were very helpful. Thank you!!
My mother will never, ever accept any kind of help other than her daughters’. She has said so herself. I doubt even a serious fall and bazillions of broken bones will ever ever ever change her mind. In Canada there is no legal recourse for this type of situation. You can’t force help on a person over 18 who is of sound mind enough to make their own decisions, even if said decision might eventually lead to an accident or even more ill health. Good luck to anyone living this situation. It’s hell.
My in-laws are incredibly frail, have many serious conditions, and it’s unsafe for them to be alone in their house without round-the-clock care. But they absolutely REFUSE our attempts to get the care they need. They will not go into an assisted-living facility (they have the money and in fact have been paying over the years to be able to move if it were necessary). Nope, they insist on living at home. They refuse to have anyone come to the house to care for them. We are all at our wits end. Additionally, we don’t live near them; we’re scattered all around the country. Both are fall risks. In fact, they fall regularly. Thank God their falls weren’t bad falls. We’re all freaking out because it’s only a matter on time something dire happens. Legally, we have no recourse. 😢 They are both 89.