On parenting parents

So my dad woke up about 5am and was fine. He turned the heat up, went back to bed, and woke up not so fine anymore. His left leg is completely numb and he can barely move it. My former Cub Scout dad, raised by a former Girl Scout, was prepared and had a cane. But he’s having a minor attack of vertigo and can barely use it.

Mom and I have told him to call the doctor, but he won’t. He’s too stubborn. He also feels obligated to stay home and care for my recovering mom.

He already feels helpless, having been forced to retire in June due to his disease. So being laid up now is not an option to him. I can completely understand where he’s coming from. After all, everything I know about being a good man I learned from him.

But I also learned about being a responsible adult from my mom, who argues the point, “How can you take care of me if you’re dead?” A very valid point since my dad is currently experiencing symptoms of a stroke.

My grandparents are the same way. They refused the nurses hired to help care for them, and went so far as to call the police to file kidnapping charges on the assisted living home the court ordered them into.

This is why I can’t leave. I don’t want to get that 4am phone call telling me Mom fell or Dad had a stroke. I don’t want to see them turn into my grandparents, with my dad being forced to relieve himself on the floor because he can’t make it to the bathroom and them having their home condemned.

So I stayed, pretending their helping me by saving what I would pay for rent in an account for retirement or school.

But all pretense is now put aside. I make enough I could move out and still save money, so I had to tell them. That was a mistake. Now the little things I did for them I can’t do. They’ve lost that feeling of being the parent and gained the feeling of being parented. And it sucks. For everyone.

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1 Comment

  1. […] messaging relationship. As anyone who’s read more than one post on this blog knows, my life has been hectic these past couple months. I’ve been working anywhere from 50 to 60 hours or more a […]


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