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It's the saddest thing to feel you are watching one's family beginning to dissolve.

I'm an ancient gay by anyone's standard, going on 72 in ten months. My Father passed away last September at 92. My mother is quite healthy and mentally sharp, but after 73 years of marriage, being alone has taken a toll. One of my sisters is dealing with metatatic breast cancer that has invaded her left eye with new cancerous areas in her lungs and bones. I'm dealing with the return of prostate cancer for the third time, but in comparison, it's no bigge. Fortunately we comprise a large family, but all the rest have families except for one of my brothers and myself. Once my treatments are completed, I am seriously considering moving back to my Mother's home. She gets very upset when I mention this as she is fully able to take care of herself. I just can't handle thinking about her being alone so much of the time.

Needless to add, these are trying times, but I keep reminding myself how much worse these conditions can be for many others without means. Still, it's new sadness for me.

by Anonymousreply 3001/27/2013

Sorry for the mixed tenses in the first sentence. I'm not thinking too clearly to have post this on an internet site. .

by Anonymousreply 101/25/2013

Op, my heart goes out to you. I hope you can help your family with all these struggles cause it appears you're a strong man.

by Anonymousreply 201/25/2013

OP, you are a good person. My father recently passed away and my mother is lost without him, they got married when she was 19 and he was her whole life. Thankfully my brother has a huge house and is very wealthy and they are letting her stay there for as long as she wants. She wants to get a condo but I think she needs to be with people right now.

by Anonymousreply 301/25/2013

Yes, when you're without means, having a sick family member, in my case, two sick family members is devastating . I'm sitting around now trying to look for a free clinic because we have no medical insurance.

by Anonymousreply 401/25/2013

That's a lot to deal with, OP. Best of luck to you.

by Anonymousreply 501/25/2013

OP, if you and your Mom get along well, then you should absolutely move in with her. My Mom and I lived 2,000 miles apart and I could not retire before she passed away.

Best of luck to you, I am sorry you are going through this.

by Anonymousreply 601/25/2013

OP, that is a huge amount weighing on you and those you love. You articulated it beautifully for so many who have felt that sadness and pressure. You have all good thoughts coming your way, and I hope you find some support, as I hope r4 does.

by Anonymousreply 701/25/2013

I ave just gone through something like that, my heart goes out to you. When you can, embrace living your life.

by Anonymousreply 801/25/2013

OP, big hugs. God Bless.

by Anonymousreply 901/25/2013

OP, I don't have any words of wisdom, but will be thinking of you.

by Anonymousreply 1001/25/2013

OP, my heart also goes out to you.

My mother is feisty as ever and doesn't want any help and she's 80, but she needs it.

I figure I'm not likely to meet anyone. Why not go home and support her?

by Anonymousreply 1101/25/2013

Well OP, its very sweet of you to want to do that for you mother, but she might want here space if she gets upset talking about you moving in. She is probably in the depths of bereavement right now.

If the situation was different and your father was still alive, would they be joyful if you moved home without a dramatic reason?

If so, then yes, maybe she is putting up a strong front. Hard to tell, dont know her, you do.

In that case, you could ease here into it by making it seem like you need her help instead of you helping her. Then over time it will work out that you start doing a lot of little things for her.

My own family had a similar situation. One of my siblings moved back home after a divorce. It turned out to be a good thing, dad died and mom was all alone. She really springed back knowing she had family in the home. Was happy for many years until she passed.

That's the other thing. If you do that, you will become VERY close to her like when you were a child. When its her time, the devastation will feel exponential. Just be prepared for that. Hopefully you other siblings can help out in some way.

by Anonymousreply 1201/25/2013

Sending good thoughts your way OP.

by Anonymousreply 1301/26/2013

Losing your family is hard OP.

I am the youngest of four kids and we were never the mega super close call every day family, but we were solid.

My mom died five years ago and we lost our center - we all didn't realize how much she really WAS the center of our family until we lost her. And we lost my sister a few years later - devastatingly, when she took her own life after fighting illness and an abusive spouse.

As far as moving back, it might be worth it to move back to the same town, but she may feel very encroached upon if you move IN and take control.

The better thing to do would be to tell her that you want to be closer, and that you want to help her maintain her independence and plan for the future. Then give her some time to think about how you can do that.

by Anonymousreply 1401/26/2013

The last of my father's siblings Thursday night.

I'm trying to deal with my mother's dementia and manage her finances from 1000 miles away. I thank my father every day for being so prudent with the little money he made during his lifetime.

Another eldergay here (60). I was hoping life would get easier at this point and to slow down, but I'm busier than ever with work and helping my mom.

by Anonymousreply 1501/26/2013

((Hugs)) OP

by Anonymousreply 1601/26/2013

OP and everyone else posting here who is in a similar situation, you are in my thoughts. Dealing with aging, illness and death are life's biggest challenges, and much to our detriment, our culture does very little to acknowledge or support those of us who are confronting life's denoument. Which is sad, since we will all go through it at some point. Loss of a loved one is devastating, but please remember, you are not alone. There are many people out there struggling with the same reality. We all are in this together. Stay strong.

by Anonymousreply 1701/26/2013

sending vibes OP. I'm a lot younger, but currently watching my dad die from liver cancer.

this just a few months after being in hospice everyday for 2 weeks, spending time with my best friend as he died of cancer as well (he was 36!).

i pendulum between being totally detached and a complete quivering, tear-soaked mess.

it is so so draining.

wish i could give you a hug. we all need one every once in awhile.

by Anonymousreply 1801/26/2013

Wishing you well, OP.

by Anonymousreply 1901/26/2013

Yes you're not alone OP and my heart goes out to you. Taking care of an elderly parent is draining, difficult and complicated - I think more so than you realize if you are living there - if you can afford it, can you take a small apartment nearby? Whatever you do, it really needs to be punctuated with some joyful moments for both of your sakes, so no matter what you do make sure and take time to have fun with her, whatever that may be. Sometimes finding fun and joy is harder, sometimes easier, but you need to always look for it. For me and my mom sometimes it's just watching a cooking show together and laughing at our own critical reviews of everything they do like we did on Saturday mornings when I was a young boy. That's my advice - because there will be times when you just feel, well, let's just say - completely spent and if you don't watch out, it can quickly spiral down and the negativity sets in. It works - That's my advice to you.

by Anonymousreply 2001/26/2013

I'm also empathizing with you OP.

It's so very hard to balance your love for parents - even when those same parents may have treated you badly in the past - with the guilty feeling of wanting your own life.

My parents were 40 when I was born, an only child. They disowned me when I came out, but that only served to build a better relationship when reached out to me a few years later.

They're gone now, but it was so difficult to be in NYC while they were in FL. I got off somewhat easy since my mother was there for my father and lived indepently for years after he died until a week before she did, and I'm in my mid fifties. But it was an every day thing to be involved in their affairs, and I'm glad I was. But I also feel like I could have done more.

Good luck OP. Give yourself the room to do what you think is right for them AND for you.

by Anonymousreply 2101/26/2013

OP, sounds like she might not want you living with her even if she needs it.

I'm dealing with something like that with a disabled sib. She wants to live alone but can't keep up her house. Every time I go there it's a mess, I could spend 8 hours just cleaning and sometimes have to. Still, she refuses to live with someone. If her health gets really bad, it will be a fight to get her to accept me moving in, but she has no one else.

My suggestion is that you look into living close to her - I mean really close, like next door or down the block. That way, mom can have her independence and you can be there for dinner or if she needs something done. Also, you can see her every day or two and be able to monitor her general condition. I did that with my dad, and he still hid health issues he was having. Old people tend to want to conceal their illnesses from others, and they lie about how well they are when they're not doing well at all.

My extreme sympathy to you about your family situation, I lost three family members last year and there were two serious illnesses. I am the youngest, so a day will come when I have no family at all. I dread it horribly.

by Anonymousreply 2201/26/2013

I sympathize with you too R22 but that sounds like a situation where if she's really not able to care for herself, it's time that someone legally steps in for her....

by Anonymousreply 2301/26/2013

Thinking of you, OP. You're not alone.

by Anonymousreply 2401/26/2013

Oh, but OP is alone, #24. The worst part of his thread is that he appears to have no one to talk to, other than a faceless gay celebrity gossip board.

by Anonymousreply 2501/26/2013

I've never met a 71-year old whose mother was still alive, you can count yourself lucky & try to make the best of the time you've got left together... Especially while she still has her marbles. Things can go downhill in the blink of an eye at that age.

It's probably a good idea to live together just for the safety/health factor, but kept in mind people still want their privacy. Who knows what she's up to in her bedroom :)

by Anonymousreply 2601/26/2013

R26 you need to read those tips on what to say and what not to say when people are in distress.

Best of luck to you OP. Hugs

by Anonymousreply 2701/26/2013

R23, you must not have any experience with declining relatives. There is no such thing as "step in for her" any more. My mom was a thousand times worse, she had dementia as well as physical disability, and we could do nothing to force her to receive help. We tried, believe me. Nothing. Her house looked like something out of Hoarders. I even called the Health Department to do an inspection, it was so bad. Nada.

If people don't want help, you can do NOTHING unless they physically are having an emergency. My mom fell down and couldn't get up, she had to go to the hospital. Before that, nothing. Even then, if she had lived, it would have been a huge, expensive fight, and we had no money for lawyers.

by Anonymousreply 2801/27/2013

STFU and move in. What's she gonna do?

by Anonymousreply 2901/27/2013

Um, call the police and have you arrested? You can't just "move in" to somebody else's house without their permission.

by Anonymousreply 3001/27/2013
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