When Adult Siblings Fight–6 Steps To Heal The Hurt

October 9, 2007 at 8:39 pm 2 comments

By CK Wilde for 3GenFamily Blog

The court reporter was readying her equipment while waiting for the next case to begin. The bailiff brought in the defendant. The court reporter glanced up to see the next man on trial. Imagine the her shock to see that the defendant being brought into criminal court was her mother’s court appointed guardian!

This man was accused of embezzling from his nephew’s trust account. Was this the same man who was managing her mother’s affairs through the county’s Public Guardian Office? Yes, it was.

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Entry filed under: aging parents, Dementia, Estate Planning, family, Living Will, Medical Power of Attorney. Tags: , .

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2 Comments

  • 1. gillian williams  |  June 23, 2008 at 11:44 am

    I am the eldest daughter of a Dad with Alzheimers, he lives with us. I have 2 brothers and a younger sister. We have fallen out badly. One brother lives in Australia another in S Africa just come home to England (for now). We have Power of Attorney and have tried to register it. They have objected mainly on the relationship between my husband and my father. We are waiting for the Court of Protection to decide. I am feeling so very hurt and bewildered and now it is impossible for the others to see Dad as I do not want to see them. We look after him full time they haven’t rang to see how he is for months. How do we carry on like this.

  • 2. ckwilde  |  June 26, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    Dear Gillian,

    I am so sorry to hear about your issues with your siblings. It is very normal to feel upset when siblings barge into a situation that you have been trying to handle on your own for some time.

    Even though it is extremely difficult, resist the urge to say “Where have you been all this time?” Instead, try to say “Thank you for coming all this way.”

    We had a similar issue with my husband’s mother. When one is at a distance, it is hard to believe that a parent’s condition could deteriorate so much. We had to travel to his mother’s home to see for ourselves that her situation was at it was described to us.

    I am not familiar with the adult protection laws of the UK. Here in the US, the court would want all of the siblings to have the ability to visit with the elderly parent unless one of the children had been abusive to the parent.

    If you can find a way to allow your siblings to visit with your
    father, it may help to reduce the tension that exists right now. Is there an understanding member of the clergy who can be there with you?

    Caring for an Alzheimer’s patient is exhausting. Being involved in a legal action in which your basic decisions are being questioned is upsetting. I can understand how hurt you must feel.

    If you can release these feelings, you will be better able to care for your father, meet with your brothers and sister and perhaps even cooperate with them to give your father the best outcome. You can use the technique I wrote about in my blog post

    1. Acknowledge your anger and resentment. “I am angry because . . .”
    2. Acknowledge the hurt and pain it created. “This hurt me because . . .”
    3. Acknowledge the fears and self-doubts that it created. ” It made
    me feel . . .”
    4. Own any part you may have played in letting it occur or letting
    it continue. ” I did . . . to contribute to the problem.”
    5. Acknowledge what you were wanting that you didn’t get, and then put yourself in the other person’s shoes and attempt to understand where he or she was coming from at the time, and what needs the person was trying to meet — however inelegantly — by his or her behavior.
    ” My brother (sister) was trying to . . . .”
    6. Let go and forgive the person. ” I forgive and release . . .”

    You can write down your responses to each step and then tear it up or burn it so that no one sees it. Go through it separately for each sibling.

    I can assure you that you will feel better going through this
    technique. And, you will be better prepared no matter what the Court of Protection decides.


Copyright 2007-2008 CK Wilde. All Rights Reserved.

All writings here are copyrighted by CK Wilde. You may not use them without written permission but you may link to the posts or give out a link to the posts if you provide attribution (tell your readers where you got the link).

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