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My mother has fairly severe dementia, is in an assisted-living facility near my home and I am her legal guardian. Although my mom and I get along very well, my siblings have turned her care into a nightmare for me. These siblings are significantly older than I am and are nearly strangers to me, as they were not in the home when I was growing up and I have had little contact with them over the years. They are hypercritical and question every little thing...right down to the medications her doctor prescribes! I am trying to be patient and address their concerns, but frankly, I am getting tired of having to justify every decision. For people who, for years, made little effort to see her, they certainly consider themselves long-distance experts on Mom's care.

My husband is getting so fed up with them that he's of the opinion that I should resign my guardianship and let the rest of my siblings figure out how they're going to take care of my mother without my assistance.

I think I'm just venting, but any suggestions?
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Aloha "westerngirl",

Something you might try with those "old" siblings. Send each of them a note telling them that you will no longer communicate with them about your mother's condition. They'll have to deal directly with the doctors, etc. (probably no one will tell them anything). If they call be very polite and tell them you will not longer talk to them on the phone and from then on if they call just say "I have nothing to say" and hang up. They'll get the message if you stick to it. Whatever you do, don't let them and their attitudes disrupt your own home and family. You'll have to be firm, have to mean it and have to stick to it. Ain't family grand ? HAH!

Pomaikai (Hawaiian for good luck), Judi
Hi Westerngirl, Wow, more long distance caregivers. Oooops, excuse me,care-talkers I mean. Sounds as though you are in the same situation as I was a few years back. I hospiced my Mom, at my home, paid all her expenses,had holiday dinners for the entire family, only to have my Dad and my older sister (who by the way is a Catholic Nun) and I guess she has MD after her name too. She questioned EVERYTHING!!! I could have handled that but If I ever in my life hear " well, I think you should" I will hurt that person. LOL! She lived in Cleveland, and wanted control over everything going on here. Well, I got caller ID and it helped, she still showed up too often at my house and told me what to do, how to do it ect. Well, all that is h2o under the bridge, as my Mom has passed away over 3 years ago, and the Dear ole nun ran the funeral and everything since then. I also let her run my 94 year old Dads affairs, house, cleaning, cooking, medical affairs, and did I mention her 58 year old diabetic, on diaysis 3X weekly, lazy brothers problems too? Trust me, I do not tell her what to do, how to do it, in fact, I do not talk to any of them anymore! Hey,she is no longer 'Bettye Crocker- big talker. She is trying to fill my shoes as a caregiver and she will never do it. You are doing a fine job and you can tell the others to 'put up or shut up'. Caregiving made me a much stronger person and I no longer feel as though I must please everyone else. My Mom was happy and that is all that matters. just do it your way!!!!!!
Thank you for replying to my rant. Since I am new at this site, I have only just begun to read some of messages posted on earlier dates. I am dismayed that family interference is so often experienced by caregivers. What a sad commentary on our society that when our parents are most vulnerable, our families tend to fail us by raising old hurts and assuming old familial roles. Why can't these people grow up??
Hello westerngirl

Welcome.. your last post seems to sum it all up... hoping you are feeling stronger... it isn't easy dealing with siblings who have not been in the picture all along...

unfortunately with HIPPA, doctors aren't able to reveal a lot of information, but you can always direct them to her doctors to take the pressure off yourself... keep your power and keep us posted....

richest blessings
Hi Westerngirl.

I understand how you feel. It is a bit much, and I have basically severed ties almost all of my family. It is difficult to be in the position where people you always believed would be there for you all of a sudden are not. I'm sorry for how this is going for you. All you can do is tell them to be there or not. If they must put their two cents in, then they must be around more. If not, oh well. If you ignore them, they WILL go away. Best of Luck!

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