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What can I do to silence critical brothers?

My brothers criticize all of my caregiving decisions yet they refuse to take part in caring for our parents. How can I get them to either chill out or pitch in?
Status: Open    Nov 27, 2014 - 01:25 AM

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Expert Answers

Dec 05, 2014 - 08:35 AM

You can only control your own actions and or response to others. If your brothers are not willing to help with caregiving of your parents or offer some better options for decisions that need to be made then I don't believe anything will change. Therefore you could choose not to listen or partake in a conversation with their criticism, if it lacks alternative ideas or suggestions. When you need help you could solicit assistance from other extended family, friends or neighbors of your parents, or volunteers from a local church or senior center. Also you could contact your local agency or aging for other resources.

It is important that your parents have a durable power of attorney naming someone of their choice to make decisions for them in the event they are not able to do so for themselves. That person should be responsible for decision making and their welfare.

If they are still capable of making their own decisions then perhaps they could solicit help from your brothers if they desire their help in certain matters.

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APFM Staff Answers

Sep 08, 2015 - 01:08 PM

There is a new article on the A Place for Mom blog that discusses this: You’re Doing It All Wrong: Handling Caregiver Criticism.

Source: www.aplaceformom.com/blog

Voted Best Answer

Dec 05, 2014 - 08:35 AM

You can only control your own actions and or response to others. If your brothers are not willing to help with caregiving of your parents or offer some better options for decisions that need to be made then I don't believe anything will change. Therefore you could choose not to listen or partake in a conversation with their criticism, if it lacks alternative ideas or suggestions. When you need help you could solicit assistance from other extended family, friends or neighbors of your parents, or volunteers from a local church or senior center. Also you could contact your local agency or aging for other resources.

It is important that your parents have a durable power of attorney naming someone of their choice to make decisions for them in the event they are not able to do so for themselves. That person should be responsible for decision making and their welfare.

If they are still capable of making their own decisions then perhaps they could solicit help from your brothers if they desire their help in certain matters.

Source: 

Answers

Mar 08, 2015 - 04:13 PM

My sister was very critical when I was taking care of our dad. She never came to see him, although she continued to call him on the phone, which at times had bad consequences and would get him all mad. I believe she was in denial of him aging and declining and did not support his diagnosis or what I was doing for him. AFter talking to her about his issues, she would dismiss me and get me so upset that I couldn't even think straight. Her tactics continued until she stopped talking to me. At the time it upset me, but in reality it was a blessing.

When my sister was out of the picture, I was able to focus on my dad and really consider all the options for him. If I needed to dicuss the difficult questions with anyone, I would always talk with other caregivers which included My cousin, a dear family friend, and all the other caregivers at the Assisted Living complex at our monthly meeting. It was with these people who were also caregivers, that we could really discuss difficult conversations. We'd talk, we'd cry, and talk some more, but a perfect answer for my dad's treatment was always found. Because in the end, that's the topic at hand. The parent you're caring for, not the drama of others.

I also considered my sisters behavior to be a smoke screen. While she was complaining loudly, it took the attention off the fact she wasn't helping or even visiting. Then there are many people who never come to terms with an aging parent.

Your attitude to ignore them will help you. Going to a support group is a great way to hear other creative ideas for this situation, plus it is a place for you to unload all their drama.

Good luck.

Nov 08, 2015 - 11:08 AM

Thank you all for the great answers, I am dealing with exactly the same situation. I'm sole caretaker for my 92-year-old mother even though I have to perfectly healthy sisters who completely disapprove of how I take of her but don't want to get involved other than to xxxx at me when I tell them they need to come see their mother. We are completely estranged, there will be no holidays for us to share as a family. Because ever since my moms strokes last winter that put her assisted living ( which I did totally on my own, I not only moved her to my nephews home and then spent months cleaning out her house, then fnding The Westmon through your organization and moving her by myself back down here after my older sister told me her son and grandson wanted her moved out. I end up paying for things she needs simply because of her fixed income. We squeeze by barely every month. Even more of a downside has been the decline of my own health, which is why the latest call for help went out to my two sisters.....who still haven't come to see her and help with some things, errands, dr.appts, shopping, grooming.

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By knit.n.needle on Jun 03, 2016 - 04:20 PM | Like (0)  |  Report

I am dealing with the same issue. My brother sabotages anything I do with my mom. I dont complain when he doesnt help. My sister (who lives away) have organized her care. But he undermines everything I do. I plan to have her up for dinner-he takes her away. We plan renos on her house so she can be safe - he backs out on plans to open doors for contractors. If there is a consult with doctors he calls family members to give false info. I have been reduced to tears dealing with him-not with my mom who needs understanding. And everytume I want to trust him and open my heart , only to be hurt again.

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