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s/o do you expect your children to care for you in old age?


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ETA: You're also not considering their future spouses in the equation either.

 

I am, actually. One of the things that we will require of our children before we will support any marriage is that they have these kinds of value-based discussions with potential spouses.

 

While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

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I've got to say, it is encouraging to hear that so many of you take care of your parents and are training your children in that direction also, and that you would even expect it. I do believe our society's view of family is so free and loose that it no longer means what it should mean. I think families absolutely *should* take care of each other, esp. the weakest and most vulnerable members. So this thread is encouraging to me, and convicting that I should model doing more to help my own parents.

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Faith, I've seen *exactly* what you describe from the pov of the in home health care professional, there to give the family a much needed break/assistance. And it absolutely colours my willingness to either take in, or be taken in.

 

Even if my parents/MIL were God's gift to the world, wonderous human beings who were an absolute joy to be around at all times, I wouldn't move them in when they were unable to manage on their own. First off, that would be pretty much any day now w/MIL, and I have young children, and she has possible dementia. Not a safe environment.

 

Second, I've been raising kids since I was a teen. Once they're launched, I need/want/deserve a break from taking care of someone 24/7. I know, I know, SELFISH!

 

Third, I've seen the pressure it puts on the caretaker, their marriage, their kids, and nobody is worth destroying those relationships for.

 

Fourth, I have a severe chronic pain disability. I'm not physically capable of ensuring safety or assisting w/activities of daily living.

 

I am completely and totally willing to visit MIL on a regular basis in a care facility if we can either a) convince her to move close enough, or b) end up moving ourselves w/in a day trip distance. That I can and would do, despite the difficulties in our relationship.

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I am, actually. One of the things that we will require of our children before we will support any marriage is that they have these kinds of value-based discussions with potential spouses.

 

While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

 

I agree. It is a hope and a prayer that my boys will all marry a kind and gentle woman with strong family values for all family. Of course in the end it is their choice, but that is definitely what we will be encouraging them toward. Not only for this issue, but for every issue in life. Then it is our responsibility to be good parents in law. But I have noticed a trend toward having no grace toward in-laws for any kind of mistake, and I hope my daugthers-in-law will have grace for me someday. Idealistic, maybe. But it is my prayer. :001_smile:

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Those of you who are saying yes, do you actually know what is involved in caring for an elderly person once they have reached the point of needing care?

 

Yes, I watched my grandmother take care of her father and, then, her mother. It was incredibly difficult, but she did it and they were better off for it. Now, when my great-grandmother's health deteriorated past my grandmother's abilities, she put her in a nursing home close to her home. That was the right decision.

 

I don't think there is a one-size fits all plan for care of the elderly. I do hope that my dc will make the best decisions possible for me depending on family resources. That may involve some sacrifice. I hope they are happy (for lack of a better word) to do it when the time comes.

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I am, actually. One of the things that we will require of our children before we will support any marriage is that they have these kinds of value-based discussions with potential spouses.

 

While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

Oh, so if their spouse isn't physically capable of taking on care of an elderly, than what? If their spouse isn't able to manage the needs of a young family + an elder, they have poor values? Really? :001_huh: And what if they're already caring for an elder, and there's no more room at the inn?

 

And what you *think* or *agree* on when you first get married can absolutely change yrs down the road, according to the reality they're living in.

 

I think there's an assumption here that their kids are going to be financially healthy, in their own homes w/extra room, and either them or their spouses at home.

 

None of that may be true. What then? Do they still get tarred w/the selfish/poor values brush, if they're not willing to sacrifice their ability to manage?

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We're talking about adults here, right?

 

Yes, but again, I don't believe that parents are servants. We don't order our entire lives to the good of our children for two decades and then turn them loose. If I've done my job right (guess we'll find out), then my children will WELCOME our input into their potential spouses. And if either of them cannot be bothered to have values-based discussions before they get married, then it tells us that they don't take marriage seriously, and so we would not support the marriage.

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I agree. It is a hope and a prayer that my boys will all marry a kind and gentle woman with strong family values for all family. Of course in the end it is their choice, but that is definitely what we will be encouraging them toward. Not only for this issue, but for every issue in life. Then it is our responsibility to be good parents in law. But I have noticed a trend toward having no grace toward in-laws for any kind of mistake, and I hope my daugthers-in-law will have grace for me someday. Idealistic, maybe. But it is my prayer. :001_smile:

 

Yes, that does seem to be a trend. I think it goes with the whole trend that treats parents as servants of their children, rather than as family members serving a caretaking role for a season. You're supposed to give them everything and then get out of their way and expect nothing in return.

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Hmm...I guess I'll be the lone opinion so far. Yes, absolutely I expect my children to care for us when we are older. That may mean just helping around the house, or doing errands, or it may mean hiring help/live in nurse, etc. If I need to be in a nursing home, I expect them to handle that and my affairs while I'm there.

 

I can't imagine not helping my own parents when they are older and I will raise my children the same way-we take care of our elders.

 

 

I feel the same. My mom took care of her parents, she was the only daughter. I've promised my mom she or my dad will never go into a nursing home. I have four siblings. I expect all of us will chip in and help them out.

 

I will raise my son to do the same, and see he will see the example he will be moved to imitate us.

 

He's too young to talk about it right now, but he does tell me he will always live with me. :001_smile:

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I guess I differ on this. I don't think it's beautiful. My mother did this for my grandmother and it totally tanked her own health. Her back is ruined, her knees are ruined, she develped several health problems related to exhaustion and some of it is not reversible, and it's going to rob her of years she could have spent with her grandchildren. She loved my dad's mom, but now, looking back, she resents it. My dad thought it was beautiful too at the time. Now that he is considering retiring and thought he'd have a wife to do all of the things together he thought they would finally be able to do, but instead he is going to be a young caretaker of a disabled wife because of the beauty of having mom care for his mother. He now VERY MUCH regrets that he allowed that to happen or supported it.

 

I will be a very young woman and face caring for my mother while still raising children and it all relates back to my mom caring for grandma when she should have been placed in a medical facility.

 

Dh's mother took care of her husband who died a very slow, agonizing, long drawn-out death from cancer. It was horrible. Even hospice wanted him in a facility. She wouldn't do it. Hospice would only give her 4 hrs. of in home respite care per week because they were hampered by state guidelines that said if a spouse is a medical professional (MIL is a retired nurse, but still licensed) then they do not qualify for as much help. She nearly died from taking care of him - no exaggeration. When he finally passed, we had to have her hospitalized for neglect of her own health. (We lived six states away and couldn't help her.) There wasn't even a funeral. Dh's brother, a 12 hour drive from there, and his sister, 8 hrs. away, had used all of their vacation visiting in order to help her when they could and dh had flown down four times in one year to the absolute angst of his boss...one more trip and he'd likely have lost his job.

 

We now have MIL near us and deal with the fall-out of her doing all of that physical care for 1.5 years, 24/7.

 

I don't find it beautiful. I find it horribly tragic and when the end comes, the caretakers have all of the consequences that come from not having appropriate help.

 

But, everyone sees it differently and obviously, some caretakers never have to do that level of care before the end comes and their health survives quite nicely. In that case, I could see how it would be wonderful! That just hasn't been our experience.

 

Faith

 

:grouphug: I can see how that would color your views on the subject. I am so sorry that you all had to go through that.

 

In our family, it played out differently. No marriages were ruined strained. No jobs were in jeapordy. My grandparents moved to where my Mother lived (8 hours away) and my mom's siblings came to help as often as they could without hurting their jobs. One sister could come often, the other came as many weekends as she could. We all recognized that everyone did as much as they could and no one bickered about it.

 

In fact, one of the best decisions they ever made was to split the care into 3 different ways. Mom took the physical help. She had the time and ability to do that. One sister (the one that couldn't travel much) took care of the paper work, the legal work, etc. The other sister took care of financial help, moving them out of their house, etc. Each child had a specialty and helped where they could. I can EASILY see how the situation could have been different with fewer/less varied children.

 

All that to say, I do realize that all situations are different and not every one will play out the same. And its apparent from here that not everyone even WANTS their children to take care of them. I do get that. But for ME, for OUR family, this is how we work. We take care of them as long as we are able - without ruining our own family or finances - and do the best for them that we are able to. We are not expected to ruin our lives in servitude, but it is hoped that we will love our parents enough to do whatever we can do for them. Just like they did our whole lives.

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Yes, but again, I don't believe that parents are servants. We don't order our entire lives to the good of our children for two decades and then turn them loose. If I've done my job right (guess we'll find out), then my children will WELCOME our input into their potential spouses. And if either of them cannot be bothered to have values-based discussions before they get married, then it tells us that they don't take marriage seriously, and so we would not support the marriage.

Uh...you do realize that refusing to support their marriages could very well end up w/estrangement, right?

 

I can't imagine having a relationship w/anyone that let me know they didn't support my marriage/choice of spouse. :001_huh:

 

I'm also guessing, since you don't say, that your kids are still quite young.

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Oh, so if their spouse isn't physically capable of taking on care of an elderly, than what? If their spouse isn't able to manage the needs of a young family + an elder, they have poor values? Really? :001_huh: And what if they're already caring for an elder, and there's no more room at the inn?

 

And what you *think* or *agree* on when you first get married can absolutely change yrs down the road, according to the reality they're living in.

 

I think there's an assumption here that their kids are going to be financially healthy, in their own homes w/extra room, and either them or their spouses at home.

 

None of that may be true. What then? Do they still get tarred w/the selfish/poor values brush, if they're not willing to sacrifice their ability to manage?

 

You're making a lot of assumptions that simply aren't present in what I said. What I said is that I expect them to have values-based discussions before they get married. Values are VALUES, they aren't plans. A plan is informed firstly by the values and then by the possibilities and lastly by the desires.

 

As I said before, I expect my children to do what they are able to the full extent that they are able. I don't think that anyone is suggesting that you expect people to do more than they are actually able.

 

Some of your assumptions are based on different value systems. My children are being raised not to date, much less marry, before they are financially healthy. They are being raised to view marriage as a lifetime committment based upon values, rather than changeable desires. While one can never foresee all the possibilities ahead of time, they are raised to do as much as they can to plan their futures to put themselves in the best positions to fulfill their duties (and we do see elder care as a duty).

 

As I said, there is no formula for this. Just values. Like everything in life, you know what your values are, what your possibilities are, and you go from there.

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Uh...you do realize that refusing to support their marriages could very well end up w/estrangement, right?

 

I can't imagine having a relationship w/anyone that let me know they didn't support my marriage/choice of spouse. :001_huh:

 

I'm also guessing, since you don't say, that your kids are still quite young.

 

I have kids very young and teens.

 

If my children chose to enter marriages that we did not support, I would imagine there was already estrangement. Their anger would not stop me from refusing to support a marriage that they would not take seriously.

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I read a statistic once that the only thing that will give a person less than a 50% chance of ending up in a nursing home is having three or more daughters, or three or more daughters in law. So the odds are that our children will NOT take care of us.

 

 

Wow, so what you're saying is I really hit the lottery with seven daughters, eh? :D

 

Do I expect them to be live in care providers when I am feeble and require tons of care? No. Do I expect they'll visit me often and love me a lot and call and send cards? Absolutely. Eighteen years of wiping disgust off of every part of their body had better buy me some devotion. :P ;) But, no, I don't expect to hit 65 and move in with one of my children.

 

Though I would say, after watching my grandparents grow old and watching my parents get older, I DO feel children have an obligation to have an aging parent live with them if they just need someone around.

 

My grandmother recently passed away. She lived in her own home with her husband and with two adult daughters coming in every day to help care for them and the rest of the NINE kids visiting often, bringing meals, etc. She moved into a nursing home in the final 6-9 months of her life when my grandfather wasn't able to provide the physical daily care and the children all have full time jobs. However, that woman had visitors EVERY. SINGLE. DAY of her stay until she passed away.

 

My great grandmother had four children. Three of them (all sons) lived near her. When she moved into a nursing home (at 98) they took turns feeding her lunch and visiting in the afternoon until she died at 103. Not ONE day ever passed that she didn't see one of her children.

 

And when my parents are old and I am unable to physically care for them, I will visit them with the same care and devotion that has been shown through four generations.

 

Doesn't our beloved older generation deserve our time or is that just for us?

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if something ever happened to one of my kids as an adult and they needed me I'd be there for them.

 

This, exactly. If, heaven forbid, one of my children got into an accident at college and ended up quadriplegic, I would fully expect to do everything necessary to help that child for however long it took.

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Do I expect my kids to help care for DH and I when we are older? Yes. What that means or how that looks depends significantly on the situation. It may mean living with them, it may mean them visiting regularly and being an active part of my care in a nursing home. As others have said, there is no one size fits all answer, but I do believe that caring for aging parents is a part of being in a family.

 

While care or circumstances may necessitate it, I can't see any of my sisters or cousins putting our parents/aunts/uncles in a nursing home unless it was medically necessary. We've always cared for the elderly in our family in their homes as long as possible.

 

While I can't give you the specifics of what I expect, I can sum it up by saying I do expect my children to be an active presence in my life when I am old.

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You're making a lot of assumptions that simply aren't present in what I said. What I said is that I expect them to have values-based discussions before they get married. Values are VALUES, they aren't plans. A plan is informed firstly by the values and then by the possibilities and lastly by the desires.

 

As I said before, I expect my children to do what they are able to the full extent that they are able. I don't think that anyone is suggesting that you expect people to do more than they are actually able.

 

Some of your assumptions are based on different value systems. My children are being raised not to date, much less marry, before they are financially healthy. They are being raised to view marriage as a lifetime committment based upon values, rather than changeable desires. While one can never foresee all the possibilities ahead of time, they are raised to do as much as they can to plan their futures to put themselves in the best positions to fulfill their duties (and we do see elder care as a duty).

 

As I said, there is no formula for this. Just values. Like everything in life, you know what your values are, what your possibilities are, and you go from there.

You're assuming about my values ;) Funny, b/c I'm raising my kids w/same ideas, but considering my own personal experience w/life throwing situations that couldn't be predicted/prevented, I'm a lot more flexible in my perspective in how it may play out in reality.

I have kids very young and teens.

 

If my children chose to enter marriages that we did not support, I would imagine there was already estrangement. Their anger would not stop me from refusing to support a marriage that they would not take seriously.

Wow. Ok, we're very, very different, b/c I can't imagine withholding my love and support for my kids, unless they were doing something illegal/dangerous/abusive. I readily acknowledge that they will marry whomever they choose, and when it comes down to it, I do not get a vote. It's their life.

 

Am I teaching them about the seriousness of the commitment of marriage, choosing a spouse, etc? Of course.

 

Doesn't mean I'm entitled to a vote though.

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Your plan works for those who are light enough to be helped physically by the caregiver and can cooperate. Many elderly don't fit that description, even before their mind goes. I could not help some of my elderly relatives even if I had muscles like Arnold; just don't have the strength to lift someone three times my weight.

 

Yes. Different situations are different situations.

 

People who are immobile need to be repositioned at least every two hours, around the clock, to prevent skin breakdown. That is simply too much for one person to handle over a significant length of time, especially if the person isn't emaciated. That level of care is crazy-inducing with a 7lb newborn, and at least that phase passes quickly.

 

I would not want my children to feel they had to provide that sort of care for me, and I hold absolutely no judgement whatsoever on the families I deal with daily who have had to put someone in a nursing home who require that level of care.

Edited by ocelotmom
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One of my dearest friends cleans houses for a living, and she has several elderly folks she cleans for. She has now had to cut back on her houses she cleans because she is taking some of these folks to doctor appointments, PT, etc. At least one of these ladies has a grown child living nearby who could do this running (does not work, is healthy, and has no children), but doesn't.

 

Admittedly, I don't know the specifics, but in a situation where an adult child just chooses not to help their aging parent...well, I think that's profoundly sad. There are many reasons why it may not be possible, but in the scenario where an adult child doesn't want to accommodate that need? :001_huh: Sometimes in life you put on your big girl panties and do the right thing.

 

(And before any big girl panties get in a twist, let me reiterate that I know there are LOTS of completely valid reasons why adult children may not be ABLE to care for their aging parents. But just not wanting to? Nah. Not cool for me.)

Edited by rutamattatt
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The seriousness of the marriage does not depend on my approval.

 

I sincerely hope that I raise children who can function independently, making moral and value decisions without needing to "run it by mom first." And I certainly won't be asking, "And do you agree to take care of me in my old age because that is what will make me value you, approve of you, and otherwise not be ashamed of you."

 

 

 

I have kids very young and teens.

 

If my children chose to enter marriages that we did not support, I would imagine there was already estrangement. Their anger would not stop me from refusing to support a marriage that they would not take seriously.

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I am, actually. One of the things that we will require of our children before we will support any marriage is that they have these kinds of value-based discussions with potential spouses.

 

While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

 

Good luck with that! :lol:

 

Let me guess...you have young children.

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One of my dearest friends cleans houses for a living, and she has several elderly folks she cleans for. She has now had to cut back on her houses she cleans because she is taking some of these folks to doctor appointments, PT, etc. At least one of these ladies has a grown child living nearby who could do this running (does not work, is healthy, and has no children), but doesn't.

 

Admittedly, I don't know the specifics, but in a situation where an adult child just chooses not to help their aging parent...well, I think that's cr@p. There are many reasons why it may not be possible, but in the scenario where an adult child doesn't want to accommodate that need? :001_huh: Sometimes in life you put on your big girl panties and do the right thing.

 

(And before any big girl panties get in a twist, let me reiterate that I know there are LOTS of completely valid reasons why adult children may not be ABLE to care for their aging parents. But just not wanting to? Nah. Not cool for me.)

I don't want to have anything to do w/my parents ever again in this lifetime, regardless of what the distance may or may not be.

 

Yep, that's my choice. I make no apologies for it.

 

However, considering my parents were abusive growing up, and continued to be cruel and maniplulative and deceitful in my relationship w/them as an adult, I'd say it was a case of them reaping what they've sown ;)

 

There are those horrified by my choices. But, they either cannot imagine parents who would be so willingly damaging to their kids, and therefore cannot understand how it's genuinely a protective measure to preserve everyone's mental health (by that I mean myself, dh, and kids), or they think that I should simply allow them to continue their abusive and toxic ways under the guise of being a good daughter and honouring my parents.

 

When it's to the point where your dh requests that you don't leave him alone w/your mother b/c she's coming on to him, all bets are off :tongue_smilie::tongue_smilie:

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You're assuming about my values ;)

 

I'm sorry. Maybe I made a mistake? I thought you posted earlier in the thread that you wouldn't want to take an elder because you feel like you need/want/deserve a break after you get done raising kids. That would be a completely different value system than mine. But if you aren't the one that posted that, then I apologize. My mistake. Very sorry.

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No because I've seen too many bad stories in my family. And most of it due to selfishness on the aging persons part: No, I'm not leaving my home. You come here and take care of me. No, I'm not going to get that operation even though it might save my life or even make things easier. No, I'm not doing x, y, or z. Cater to me.

 

I have one set of grandparents who has moved to a smaller house because they couldn't take care of their old one. They are the only ones with realistic expectations about their health and future. The rest expect to be taken care of with no thought to how it affects anyone else. So put me in a facility if necessary. I don't expect my children's lives to revolved around me. I expect them to make sure I'm cared for, but I don't expect them to do it themselves.

 

Due to ODS's brain damage, he never developed past 2 months of age so I've had 5 years of taking care of someone. Completely, extensively. He was hooked up to many machines at the end of his life. And I spent many nights bawling because he was about at the size of what I could care for. He was going to have to go in a facility because I was almost unable to care for him. Our life was centered around taking care of DS. It is a complete drain. Because I've done it and know what it's like, I will not do it for an adult. Nor do I expect my children to do it for me.

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My husband and I have talked about this. We only have one child and I don't want her to have the stress of deciding how to care for us. So we are going to make our own arrangements before we need care and won't be able to decide for ourselves. There are some very nice, graduated care facilities in our area, where in the early levels you have your own private apartment, and when medically necessary you can move to a new room or arrange nursing care as needed as your needs change. A place like that will give us flexibility as we grow older. If we don't choose a facility like that, we will arrange nursing care at our own home for as long as possible. But when retirement comes, we will plan for and make those arrangements.

 

Along that line, we have already discussed our funeral and burial arrangements, because we don't want our daughter to have the stress of deciding that for us either. It is too much to put on one child, who we love so much.

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Your plan works for those who are light enough to be helped physically by the caregiver and can cooperate. Many elderly don't fit that description, even before their mind goes. I could not help some of my elderly relatives even if I had muscles like Arnold; just don't have the strength to lift someone three times my weight.

 

 

I do understand this. And I did have to lift for awhile, but she got better.

 

I'm saying that even light duty caregivers are expensive, and that we blew through over $10,000 just paying for those for a time. So if one has a plan to pay for actual nurses, better have a big bankroll. Believe me, your insurance is not going to do it.

 

Ridiculously, insurance won't pay for home care, but will pay (some) for nursing homes. This is why there are so many people in nursing homes who don't actually need to be there (not discounting the ones who do, who require meds that cannot be done at home, tubes, or are violent and destructive).

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TexasRachel: No because I've seen too many bad stories in my family. And most of it due to selfishness on the aging persons part: No, I'm not leaving my home. You come here and take care of me.

 

Don't be too quick to jump to the conclusion that this is merely selfishness. Older people do better in their own environment. They die quickly when moved to nursing homes, generally speaking.

 

No, I'm not going to get that operation even though it might save my life or even make things easier. No, I'm not doing x, y, or z. Cater to me.

 

Well, maybe they have actually considered the operation and realize that the quality of life would be no better afterward. Some do.

 

I have one set of grandparents who has moved to a smaller house because they couldn't take care of their old one. They are the only ones with realistic expectations about their health and future.

In my experience, these people are the more typical ones, not the "cater to me" crowd.

 

 

Due to ODS's brain damage, he never developed past 2 months of age so I've had 5 years of taking care of someone. Completely, extensively. He was hooked up to many machines at the end of his life. And I spent many nights bawling because he was about at the size of what I could care for. He was going to have to go in a facility because I was almost unable to care for him. Our life was centered around taking care of DS. It is a complete drain. Because I've done it and know what it's like,

 

I'm sorry. God bless you for doing that. You did something to be proud of, and you did your best. If you could not have continued, then everyone would have understood that.

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My parents live in one of these. They currently live in a small house, but they bought in so that they will be cared for should they need assisted living.

 

They have also already planned their funerals and bought burial plots.

 

Dawn

 

My husband and I have talked about this. We only have one child and I don't want her to have the stress of deciding how to care for us. So we are going to make our own arrangements before we need care and won't be able to decide for ourselves. There are some very nice, graduated care facilities in our area, where in the early levels you have your own private apartment, and when medically necessary you can move to a new room or arrange nursing care as needed as your needs change. A place like that will give us flexibility as we grow older. If we don't choose a facility like that, we will arrange nursing care at our own home for as long as possible. But when retirement comes, we will plan for and make those arrangements.

 

Along that line, we have already discussed our funeral and burial arrangements, because we don't want our daughter to have the stress of deciding that for us either. It is too much to put on one child, who we love so much.

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I have young children and teens.

 

:lol: But way to make assumptions. :lol:

 

Your statements about "shaming" adult children and telling them that their spouses are not of good moral character tells me quite clearly that you have not ever parented a young adult. No assumption necessary. I can also guarantee you that if you take this attitude with your children's future spouses, you will most assuredly NOT be cared for by them in your old age. In fact, you won't even have to wait until you're old...they'll be sure to tell you not to let the door hit you on the way out of their lives much sooner than that.

 

So like I said...good luck with that. You'll need it.

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Yes, but again, I don't believe that parents are servants. We don't order our entire lives to the good of our children for two decades and then turn them loose. If I've done my job right (guess we'll find out), then my children will WELCOME our input into their potential spouses. And if either of them cannot be bothered to have values-based discussions before they get married, then it tells us that they don't take marriage seriously, and so we would not support the marriage.

 

I am, actually. One of the things that we will require of our children before we will support any marriage is that they have these kinds of value-based discussions with potential spouses.

 

While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

 

 

I think I agree with everything you've said in this thread so far.

Of course, no, if my daughter marries a man who is physically incapable of caring for me, or himself, or whatever, I will stand by her. But I fully expect, if she marries a man of average physical health, that he will be in line with our values.

Yes I have young children, and you can call me idealistic...but these values are something we talk about every day. They are things I discussed with my own husband before we got married and you can be sure my daughter will be raised to do the same.

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I don't really know because I don't have any experience in this area. DH has a decent retirement fund and will reach social security age 11 years before me. We're hoping we can afford to stay in our home well into our elderly years. To be honest, I'd much rather move into a retirement community where we have no maintenance of a home. I don't want my children to care for me medically (physically) but I do expect them to take an active part in my life. I'm sure I will need help navigating the unknown of being old. I am scared of being in a nursing home because I hear such horrid stories of the elderly not being cared for by staff. I really can't say how I'll feel about being old until I'm actually old. I can say I don't want my kids to take me in when I'm old now, but when I'm actually in that position, I may be heartbroken if they don't. I don't ever want to be a burden, but I don't want to be alone. Ever.

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Impish: I don't want to have anything to do w/my parents ever again in this lifetime, regardless of what the distance may or may not be.

 

Yep, that's my choice. I make no apologies for it.

 

However, considering my parents were abusive growing up, and continued to be cruel and maniplulative and deceitful in my relationship w/them as an adult, I'd say it was a case of them reaping what they've sown ;)

 

This is not so much "reaping what you have sown", which is more of the nature of natural consequences.

 

Gleefully stating that sticking it to them now as a point of pride is shameful.

 

There are those horrified by my choices. But, they either cannot imagine parents who would be so willingly damaging to their kids, and therefore cannot understand how it's genuinely a protective measure to preserve everyone's mental health (by that I mean myself, dh, and kids), or they think that I should simply allow them to continue their abusive and toxic ways under the guise of being a good daughter and honouring my parents.

 

Or maybe everybody could and did grow up over the years. Even the parents. You are a parent, and if you are like the rest of us, you have done some things wrong and made some bad decisions. Hopefully, your kids are graceful enough to allow you to repent of this.

 

If they do not allow this, well, you have indoctrinated them that we cut off parents.

Edited by TranquilMind
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I'm sorry. Maybe I made a mistake? I thought you posted earlier in the thread that you wouldn't want to take an elder because you feel like you need/want/deserve a break after you get done raising kids. That would be a completely different value system than mine. But if you aren't the one that posted that, then I apologize. My mistake. Very sorry.

Nope, I did post that. I DO see needing a break btwn raising kids and taking care of someone again 24/7.

 

However, as I also stated, my disability makes caring for an elder impossible.

 

My preference for a break was simply one of the reasons I listed.

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Yes I have young children, and you can call me idealistic...but these values are something we talk about every day. They are things I discussed with my own husband before we got married and you can be sure my daughter will be raised to do the same.

 

Well, everyone with young children is idealistic. We have to be or we wouldn't make it through. It gets worse before it gets better.

 

Agree with you that everyone should discuss all sorts of issues before marrying. Everything.

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Your statements about "shaming" adult children and telling them that their spouses are not of good moral character tells me quite clearly that you have not ever parented a young adult. No assumption necessary. I can also guarantee you that if you take this attitude with your children's future spouses, you will most assuredly NOT be cared for by them in your old age. In fact, you won't even have to wait until you're old...they'll be sure to tell you not to let the door hit you on the way out of their lives much sooner than that.

 

So like I said...good luck with that. You'll need it.

 

I don't see that she said she would shame adult children or tell them that their spouse was not of good moral character. Just that she would not support a marriage if the engaged was of poor moral character. That is a different thing, IMO. We also don't know what that means exactly, nor does it mean that she would be withholding love (depending on how this is carried out).

 

There are many families that function this way. I know several personally, and it has worked out very wonderfully for them- they are happy, the kids are happy, the in-laws are happy. 2 public families I can think of off the top of my head who do things this way are the Duggars and the Bates. They seem happy enough to me.

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I expect my kids to be involved in my care when I am old. That doesn't mean they need to be the ones giving me a bath, with no help.

 

I expect to take care of my mother, and my mother expects to take care of her mother. That means that we love these people and will ensure they are cared for.

 

I would be surprised to hear anyone else in my family expects me to care for them, much less any elderly uncles who haven't had anything to do with me. I am not giving old uncles I don't know a bath. Sorry.

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I've been in that situation. The bottom line for me is that it's not right to inconvenience others, especially when it jeopardizes their health or their livelihood. It's very easy in my area for a senior to get to a dr. appt -- the county has a regularly scheduled bus set aside to pick up from people from their front door and take them. It costs $1 each way. PT was a $5 taxi ride. Not good enough. Adult children are expected to take vacation days and use them for chaueffering plus a meal out. I suspect your friends' clients are perfectly happy about her reducing her income in order to support their needs. I don't agree that it is right.

 

Transportation to and from appointments is only part of the equation. The other part is listening in on the appointment and helping the parent be an advocate for their own health care. My mom would get confused (who wouldn't with her multiple chronic issues and long list of medications) and ended up in the hospital because she didn't hear the doctor say that she should substitute one med for another. She thought she should take both. That is when I started going to appointments with her and helping her ask questions. Having me at some appointments actually saved her life. I was able to clarify things. My mom had a wonderful doc who was very attentive to his elderly patients. But, he didn't go home with them and make sure that the remembered all the instructions. That was my job. I saw my role as so much more than a chauffeur. This is what frightens me about getting older - not having anyone to help me be an advocate for myself.

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I don't see that she said she would shame adult children or tell them that their spouse was not of good moral character. Just that she would not support a marriage if the engaged was of poor moral character. That is a different thing, IMO. We also don't know what that means exactly, nor does it mean that she would be withholding love (depending on how this is carried out).

 

There are many families that function this way. I know several personally, and it has worked out very wonderfully for them- they are happy, the kids are happy, the in-laws are happy. 2 public families I can think of off the top of my head who do things this way are the Duggars and the Bates. They seem happy enough to me.

 

Then again, the families I mentioned and know personally do not do dating in their families. I agree that if your kids are away and dating, you really have zero say and should expect no say.

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Now that the conversation has switched to talking about our parents and ILs as well, I'll chime in again. I think the conversation gets muddy when you say "care for the elderly" because there are varying degrees of care. I'm very fortunate that even though my parents are 86 and 90 years old, both live independently and are doing quite well. But all of my siblings chip in to help them do so. We take them to the doctor and the store and carry heavy things for them. So far we haven't had to do any actual nursing care. We all chip in and pay for housekeeping help twice a month for slightly deeper cleaning. Even though we don't physically pick up a vacuum, I still consider it helping them when we hired the housekeeper and paid for it.

 

My ILs are younger than my parents but are not in as good health. Both dh and I have done actual nursing care of MIL. Dh has an "extended leave for family medical care" form all filled out and on file with his HR and should he need to use it all he would have to do is to make some phone calls. Different family members help with chores, and I've often taken them to the doctor. This does not mean that we will not help to hire and utilize more extensive health care for them if they need it. I consider that "caring for them" just as much because it would be dangerous for them to have family members who are untrained in certain procedures try to care for them if that is what they need. So as long as we are taking care of financial, physical, emotional and medical needs in some way, I consider it all part of "caring for" an elderly member of the family.

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blessedwinter: I don't see that she said she would shame adult children or tell them that their spouse was not of good moral character. Just that she would not support a marriage if the engaged was of poor moral character. That is a different thing, IMO. We also don't know what that means exactly, nor does it mean that she would be withholding love (depending on how this is carried out).

 

 

Right. Loads and loads of assumptions were made there.

 

If she is like most parents, she will just keep her mouth shut, or maybe offer a careful opinion if asked. Most kids are going to do what they want anyway, and we all know this.

 

There are many families that function this way. I know several personally, and it has worked out very wonderfully for them- they are happy, the kids are happy, the in-laws are happy. 2 public families I can think of off the top of my head who do things this way are the Duggars and the Bates. They seem happy enough to me.

 

 

I have serious Duggar envy. I want to be as kind and patient as that woman.

 

And yes, it is always, always best when the spouse-to- be has the blessing of the parents.

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I guess I differ on this. I don't think it's beautiful. My mother did this for my grandmother and it totally tanked her own health. Her back is ruined, her knees are ruined, she develped several health problems related to exhaustion and some of it is not reversible, and it's going to rob her of years she could have spent with her grandchildren. She loved my dad's mom, but now, looking back, she resents it. My dad thought it was beautiful too at the time. Now that he is considering retiring and thought he'd have a wife to do all of the things together he thought they would finally be able to do, but instead he is going to be a young caretaker of a disabled wife because of the beauty of having mom care for his mother. He now VERY MUCH regrets that he allowed that to happen or supported it.

 

I will be a very young woman and face caring for my mother while still raising children and it all relates back to my mom caring for grandma when she should have been placed in a medical facility.

 

Dh's mother took care of her husband who died a very slow, agonizing, long drawn-out death from cancer. It was horrible. Even hospice wanted him in a facility. She wouldn't do it. Hospice would only give her 4 hrs. of in home respite care per week because they were hampered by state guidelines that said if a spouse is a medical professional (MIL is a retired nurse, but still licensed) then they do not qualify for as much help. She nearly died from taking care of him - no exaggeration. When he finally passed, we had to have her hospitalized for neglect of her own health. (We lived six states away and couldn't help her.) There wasn't even a funeral. Dh's brother, a 12 hour drive from there, and his sister, 8 hrs. away, had used all of their vacation visiting in order to help her when they could and dh had flown down four times in one year to the absolute angst of his boss...one more trip and he'd likely have lost his job.

 

We now have MIL near us and deal with the fall-out of her doing all of that physical care for 1.5 years, 24/7.

 

I don't find it beautiful. I find it horribly tragic and when the end comes, the caretakers have all of the consequences that come from not having appropriate help.

 

But, everyone sees it differently and obviously, some caretakers never have to do that level of care before the end comes and their health survives quite nicely. In that case, I could see how it would be wonderful! That just hasn't been our experience.

 

Faith

 

 

I agree. :)

My parents do not want us to care for them in old age. Visit lots - sure. Help with things - sure. But 24/7 - nope.

 

I suppose I think of it this way. I would never wish the following on my kids for an extended length of time:

An adult with the impulse control of a toddler, mixed with the occasional abilities of an adult (ie. can maybe half operate a car, stove, ...) who may have a sex drive but zero memories or even knowledge of morals, and may have an awful temper and the ability to express that temper with adult words and adult strength. That is not who I am, and if that becomes who I am I hope my kids don't have to deal with it 24/7, or in any case much at all.

 

 

And that is sadly how some old people go, or at least in my family. So I'll be making my own arrangements just in case.

 

 

I also know that nursing care, that sort of thing can be expensive. Happily my parents were able to budget for it, and so are we.

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While I can't control their choice of spouse, I can let them know that I would be ashamed of them if they chose a spouse with poor values.

 

I'd much rather have a daughter-in-law who honestly couldn't cope with the idea of wiping my behind than drive away one of my sons by saying that I was ashamed of his choice.

 

To the OP. I would hope that my children will want to help me, but I have no expectation. I tried to persuade my mother to come and live near me (she has no friends where she lives now and loves our part of the country) so that I could keep an eye on her and allow her to be largely independent for longer. She is not prepared to do that, which I regret.

 

Laura

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Your statements about "shaming" adult children and telling them that their spouses are not of good moral character tells me quite clearly that you have not ever parented a young adult. No assumption necessary. I can also guarantee you that if you take this attitude with your children's future spouses, you will most assuredly NOT be cared for by them in your old age. In fact, you won't even have to wait until you're old...they'll be sure to tell you not to let the door hit you on the way out of their lives much sooner than that.

 

So like I said...good luck with that. You'll need it.

 

I'm sorry if that's your experience, but in my community, children simply do NOT speak to their parents that way, even as adults.

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No, they said they would be DEEPLY ASHAMED of their children for not caring for them.....so they will not "be shamed" but they will be deeply ashamed of them.

 

They also would not support their marriages if it isn't up to their value standard.

 

I don't see that she said she would shame adult children or tell them that their spouse was not of good moral character. Just that she would not support a marriage if the engaged was of poor moral character. That is a different thing, IMO. We also don't know what that means exactly, nor does it mean that she would be withholding love (depending on how this is carried out).

 

There are many families that function this way. I know several personally, and it has worked out very wonderfully for them- they are happy, the kids are happy, the in-laws are happy. 2 public families I can think of off the top of my head who do things this way are the Duggars and the Bates. They seem happy enough to me.

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Now that the conversation has switched to talking about our parents and ILs as well, I'll chime in again. I think the conversation gets muddy when you say "care for the elderly" because there are varying degrees of care. I'm very fortunate that even though my parents are 86 and 90 years old, both live independently and are doing quite well. But all of my siblings chip in to help them do so. We take them to the doctor and the store and carry heavy things for them. So far we haven't had to do any actual nursing care. We all chip in and pay for housekeeping help twice a month for slightly deeper cleaning. Even though we don't physically pick up a vacuum, I still consider it helping them when we hired the housekeeper and paid for it.

 

My ILs are younger than my parents but are not in as good health. Both dh and I have done actual nursing care of MIL. Dh has an "extended leave for family medical care" form all filled out and on file with his HR and should he need to use it all he would have to do is to make some phone calls. Different family members help with chores, and I've often taken them to the doctor. This does not mean that we will not help to hire and utilize more extensive health care for them if they need it. I consider that "caring for them" just as much because it would be dangerous for them to have family members who are untrained in certain procedures try to care for them if that is what they need. So as long as we are taking care of financial, physical, emotional and medical needs in some way, I consider it all part of "caring for" an elderly member of the family.

 

 

As usual on the internet, different people mean different things and many are misunderstanding each other.

 

Visiting my parents and in-laws and helping them with chores is not elder care as far as I'm concerned. I see that it does mean elder care for you, and that is fine. I am using it as an example for how people think differently.

 

We pay for lawn service and snow removal for my in-laws because we live 30 minutes away and can't be there in time to get it done. So we pay a service to do it. My parents live 5 minutes away, we do their lawn and shovel their snow for them. I don't call this "elder care." I help them all with housework regularly and often drive them places. To me, it's just helping them.

 

"Elder care", to me, is when they cannot take care of themselves anymore, physically. When they need care 24/7.

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. They are things I discussed with my own husband before we got married and you can be sure my daughter will be raised to do the same.

 

And just so we are clear, having those discussions with your husband (as I did with mine) before marriage was a BENEFIT to your marriage, right? It made it easier because you knew you shared values, right?

 

There seems to be this idea that insisting that my children discuss values with a potential spouse is some kind of torture. I see it as a blessing. If they find they share values, they will be happier and more secure. If they find they do not, then they can avoid a huge and costly error.

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