Loco Sister Vent

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by hearts and roses, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    My mom will have been here for 3 weeks this coming Saturday. So far, my loco sister and I have been working well together = or so I believed.

    When one of us goes to see mom, we grab whatever laundry is there. I take it home about twice weekly - sometimes it's a full load, sometimes not, but I always take it home. LS (LocoSister) takes it home when she visits as well, however, based on some of her comments, I think she's under the impression that she's doing all of my mom's laundry.

    My mom is obese and has diabetes. She's had 5-bypass surgery and because of that, she has suffered in the past with congestive heart failure. This past weekend, mom was off. She was foggy, retaining water (had severe edema in her ankles and feet), her appetite was low (very unusual for her), had great trouble breathing and very wheezy and coughing, peeing unbelieveable amounts of urine (wetting through diapers and chothing several times a day!), sleepy all the time, non-conversive...you name it, she was not well. Initially, we thought she was having asthmatic symptoms so we asked them to give her breathing treatments, which they did, but they didn't make anything better.

    Then, on Monday we had a care conference with the home. We learned that in addition to all these symptoms, my mom has been very non-compliant and refusing physical therapy and the aid of the CNA's in regards to toileting and cleaning. At that time, we requested that the Dr look into possible CHF and get an xray done. They finally complied after 4 phone call requests and it came back negative. They upped her diuretic and insulin - it's only been 3 days counting today. They claim that her ankle is going down; I will see it today when I go in at lunchtime.

    Yesterday, LS went to the home and apparently had a little pow-wow with the head nurse regarding my mom's care due to all our questions about cleaning, the CHF, walking, etc., which ordinarily I wouldn't mind so much, but she deliberately told me not to go to the home yesterday AM (I had called her and said I was heading over) because she had to go in the AM because she couldn't go in the PM. Whatever. After the meeting, hours later, she called me and started speaking to me in a very condescending manner - which is her way, always has been. She said the nurses told her that I sneak food into my mom and that even if I bring mom breakfast I also allow mom to eat their breakfast. First of all, I have NEVER given my mom anything without nurse approval. Secondly, the ONE time I brought my mom a piece of homemade healthy quiche, I had the CNA take away her breakfast tray so she wouldn't eat two breakfasts. I told my sister this and she wasn't deterred from her overall message that I need to stop bringing mom anything at all to eat period. Well, sorry, that's BS. The one thing lacking in nursing homes is fresh food, so I will continue to do as I've been doing and LS can kiss my behind. The nurse also told my sister that I bring my mom Tastycake treats. OMG. I brought them TWICE and both times asked the nurse on duty prior if it was okay, because they are sugar free - I always make sure things are sugar free - and both times the same nurse was on duty and said it was fine because mom had already eaten her meal and had her insulin shot.

    It is unbelieveable to me that my sister would A) think I would every do anything to jeopordize my mom's health and B) would speak to me as if I don't even know this woman. Ugh.

    At the home in PA, my sister M provided all my mom's snacks and those included string cheese, lf/sf pudding, yogurts, and jellos, as well as sf snack cakes. And mom would have something in between each meal. At this nursing home, they provide all the snacks and all they have for snacks are Lorna Doon cookies and graham crackers, which in my opinion, are not exactly healthy or low fat/sf snacks.

    And then there is the calendar! LS wants us to sit down with the monthly calendar the home provides its residents and go over it. For what? To create a schedule of visits so we don't overlap. WTH is she talking about? She doesn't want us to interrupt Mom's schedule of activities. I reminded LS that I work during the day so when I visit, there aren't usually any activities going on and on the ONE time there was, I left and went back later. What is ironic (and incredibly annoying) is that everytime LS plans something or schedules something or tries to adhere to a schedule of any kind, whether for pleasure or obligation, SHE is the one who is chronically late or cancels altogether. If I commit to something, anything, I follow through. If I say, "Okay, I will go Mon evening, Wed early AM, Thursday lunchtime and Sat"...then I will be there - no matter what barring illness or death. Not so for LS. If she says noon, she will show up - maybe - at 3PM. Seriously. I do not want to go over any calendar with her, but I will - just to keep the peace. But I'm not changing my schedule because I work full time, go to school part time and have a household to run and a family to care for. My LS's entire life is a volunteer thing she developed at her home - sorry, not nearly as pressing as my life.

    I do not feel any resentments whatsoever over having my mom here. In fact, I cannot even describe what a lift it is to spend so much time with her, even if she's not 100% with it anymore. It's been such a joy and fills my heart. What I'm picking up from LS is that she's overwhelmed and becoming resentful. She wants me to back off on visiting mom, I think, so she doesn't feel bad about backing off herself. She even mentioned in passing to me that her H (my brother in law) has been annoyed with her for spending so much time at the home with our mom....wth?

    I'm just peeved and needed to vent. I scheduled an appointment with my counselor for tonight. I need to put into practice techniques of allowing my LS's BS to roll off and not allow it to get to me. I know I'm not crazy and I know I haven't done anything wrong so I'm just going to continue as I have been. Thanks for listening if you've made it this far.
  2. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Hmmm. Can totally get the needing the vent. lol I'm guessing sis is a "take charge" type of gal, bit of a control freak, little martyrdom tossed in for good measure?:sigh:

    Sugar free snacks are not hurting your mom in any way. That is why the darn things were invented. And while all nursing home food isn't bad, 99.9 percent of it is disgusting, awful at best. Mom is elderly, she's in a nursing home, she has chronic illness. Let the poor woman get some joy out of life for pete's sake. As long as staff knows you brought her such and such (make sure it's the nurse and not the aide you're telling as she's doing the medications and aide may or may not relay the message) you're good to go.

    I have seen this so many times over the years and it still burns me up. Families of nursing home residents for those who will never be discharged will behave as if it is just a short visit and the patient will be home in a matter of weeks.....thus being overbearing to staff to toe the line ect. When in truth, the resident isn't going anywhere and why not do as many little things as possible to make their lives a bit more pleasant? That can and should be done while following a treatment plan. Nursing homes are depressing places even when the facility and staff do their utter best to make it not so. Patient morale is huge.......and not easy to keep up.

    mother in law was diabetic although type II. Still, sorry but I'd bring her things she liked, especially once she was in the nursing home. This could be a normal snack such as ritz crackers or candy or oreos. I informed not only her nurse of the day but the head nurse and the aides that cared for her that the foods were in her chest of drawers. So staff made it a habit to ask her if she'd had a snack periodically throughout the day. Checking blood sugar each shift is routine. Worked well and mother in law got to have some of the simple pleasures.............good as their food was downright gross most of the time and she'd have starved.

    I love the way she would grin at me like a little kid when I surprised her with some treat. It made her whole day.......sometimes her whole week. lol

    As far as visits.................You go when you can and sis can get over herself. If mom misses and activity it will be there next month.....or two weeks from now (depends on how they schedule). She'd much rather see you than do an activity. Trust me.

  3. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member


    I definitely think the advice you gave yourself is a good idea - Try not to let your LS get to you!!! Life is too short, it just isn't worth it. Continue to spend as much time as you want with your mother according to your own schedule. Bringing her treats to make her day a bit brighter, in my humble opinion, is good for her!!! Hugs... SFR
  4. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    The appointment with my counselor went well - I just needed to hear from her that I'm not crazy or on crack and that I'm doing the right things in regards to my mom and my response to LS, which she provided.

    The one thing she suggested to me was that when LS makes one of her stupid suggestions or condescending remarks to just yes her or say, "Okay" but carry on in my usual way, which was my plan, but it was nice to get the okay from the professional, lol.

    My counselor put her mom in a local nursing home a few years ago, so at least she understands a lot of what I'm going through with this situation. She has been a good support.

    Thanks Lisa and SFR.