You grew up in a home where your mom or dad made hurtful comments. You may have had a great childhood, but your parent’s health issues have changed how they react around you. When you’re with your parent, spite, anger, agitation, and insults are the norm.
Your parent needs you now.
You’re the only person that can be a family caregiver to them. What you need to know is that you’re not alone. Many adult children find themselves in this situation. Are you obligated to be there for a formerly abusive or hurtful parent? Can you even be a good family caregiver in that situation?
Ask Yourself Why You’d Want to Be a Caregiver to a Hurtful Parent
Why do you want to be your parent’s carer? Is it because you feel obligated? That’s not enough of a reason. If you’re doing it because you feel you have to, you’re not going to offer the best care your parent could get.
If you insist on being your mom or dad’s carer, set rules and boundaries. Make sure they know them. If they get physically or emotionally abusive, tell them that that will be grounds for you to leave and find them a paid caregiver. Limit your hours so that you’re not stuck there 24/7, and if your parent pushes for more, be firm with your refusal.
Talk to your area high school to see if students are required to volunteer before graduation. You may be able to get a local teen to help out with some of the chores you do. It counts for their volunteering hours, and you have some assistance with things like mowing and gardening.
Be prepared to seek emotional support. Vent to your friends, join a support group, or schedule therapy sessions. You don’t have to feel guilty for not wanting to be your parent’s caregiver. You have to be kind to yourself first and others second.
You Have to Put Yourself First
The most important thing to remember is that your needs have to come first. It doesn’t matter if your parents don’t have another family member or friend who can help, do what’s right for you. If you can’t care for a parent who is being emotionally or physically abusive, that’s okay.
Instead, call a senior care agency. Talk to that representative about arranging home care services for your parent. A senior care expert will talk about possible service and prices and answer your questions. Let a caregiver take over the care while you focus on your emotional well-being.