Thursday, October 18, 2007

Uh oh...

So, just got off the phone with H's sister and dad. Apparently, the whole family is in an uproar because I've "decided to send him off to die at a facility that is a 'cemetery'. People die there," they said. "Yes, they do die there. It's a hospice and nursing facility."

They are also upset because I have not taken some steps they wanted me to take some time ago to "reduce my burden." Translated: bring in some care from outside. I keep coming back to how this won't help me, but "if you had done that in the past, you might not be in this situation." "That may be true, but here is where I am," I say.

H is terrified they say. He "is still cogent enough to know that he's being sent off to die, that you're trying to get rid of him." And everyone is crying about this.

Yup, me too.

Sigh. I told them that I'm willing to consider other options, but I'm not certain what they are.

When I talked with them earlier, they weren't happy with my decision, but supported it. Now...guess it's sinking in a bit more and, of course, they don't want H to be terrified (neither do I), but he is very afraid and has talked with them all. I would be too.

And they chew on me for making a unilateral decision and presenting is as a fait accompi.

OK, so I walk through all this with them. How conflicted I am, how desparate I am, how this is bad for my health & his, how I just can't do this anymore, I'm at risk of getting fired, etc. Fine, you all recognize that I need help, so help me...I've been carrying this for 10 years.

"But you promised that he wouldn't go until he wasn't aware of where he is and that is what marriage is about."

"I'm sorry that I can't keep that promise. I shouldn't be making a promise to someone when they're crying, " I say.

Sadly, I agreed to put my arrangement on hold pending: looking at other places besides the "cemetery" (sic), letting H move into the other room (why this helps I don't know), and have a "family conference" about what we're going to do.

Funny, they never asked for a family conference before about him. Guilt raises its ugly head, no?


Y | O | Y said...

Convince them to take him for a week, then change all the locks and disappear for a month. Maybe that'll change their attitude!

I'm so pissed for you right now, I just wanna come over there and bitch slap them!

Y | O | Y said...

Oh, and then they can bring in some help to reduce their burden.

A Single Man said...

Thanks, YOY.

I'm mad too right now. It's like "OK, we support are the spouse." But when it comes time and H is so upset, then they're PO'd.

In some ways, I think that they're just shooting the messenger.

One sister and parents don't live locally, so they are feeling helpless. The local sister won't even talk with me, in spite of me leaving voicemail for them.

Should've realized: telling them that I am done is the wrong spin. They need to hear that this is best for H.

Live and learn...I'm extending the courtesy of continued conversation, but yea, they don't want to believe H is there, they're afraid too, and now, with me "bailing" (to use their word), then just what the hey are they going to do?

Elanor said...

please don't let this family 'guilt' you into changing your mind about placement. It is always the people whoe don't do the caring who want to run the show.

They have no idea what you are living with and badly it is affecting you.

It is thier own guilt that they are projecting onto you, don't accept it!

You have done more than enough, and getting extra help won't work in the long run. That is a solution from people who don't have to live with dementia.

I'd like to slap them as well!