Living With And Taking Care Of A Parent

It isn’t easy to live with a parent when you are an adult. When you add illness into the equation it’s almost impossible.

Unfortunately, it isn’t just one of us that is ill. We make quite a dysfunctional pair. We probably even enable each other. That’s hard to admit.

My dad is 73 and on dialysis 3 times a week. He has never listened to Doctors or anyone else except for my mom. He used to call her “Serge” short for “Sergeant” because she gave the orders. He hardly ever listens to me. I’m just his daughter who is “mentally ill”, never went to college, drank most of her life, and lives with him. Somehow, I’m his favorite.

Watching the man who raised you go from Superman to a skinny, pale, cranky (crankier), old man is painful. He had beautiful hobbies at one time that have now become hoarding and dangerous to himself and what he hoards. He has loved birds from an early age and has always had them. I loved it when he had exotic birds that he was trying to increase the numbers for because they were threatened. He had a permit from the Government to do this. He would then donate a successful pair to a Zoo or Research facility that was trying to do the same. It’s the pigeons that have taken over. He hasn’t had exotics in many years. Having over 200 pigeons to feed and water up to 3 times a day is too much for him.

If he’s too sick then I have to do it. I have little to no immune system. I shouldn’t be out there with that many birds and their feces either. He isn’t able to maintain their environment. He refuses to admit.

Inside the house we have a Moluccan Cockatoo and an African Grey Parrot. We’ve had both for at least 15 years or more. The Cockatoo started to pluck out her chest feathers a few years ago and they never grew back. She was okay though. Until the other day when I went to say Good Morning to her. I noticed a big hole in her chest. It looked like a bullet hole. I started to cry. There was no blood which I found odd. I told my dad who sitting in his chair in the living room. He never got up to look. This killed me. I wanted to slap him. How could he just sit there when one of HIS ANIMALS was hurt?

He finally looked and said it would be fine. It’s been almost a week. It isn’t fine. She’s been digging in the hole with her beak like she’s trying to find something. It’s 3 times the size it was. It can’t even be sutured. Their is necrotic flesh which will have to be cut away, the wound flushed out and packed. I KNOW ALL THIS! My father continues to do nothing.

I told him this morning that if he didn’t take care of Rosie that I would. I told him she should probably be euthanized. (Most birds do not recover well from this type of self mutilation) I told him I would put her down myself if I had to or I would call a Vet I know that specializes in Exotics.

He screamed that he would “put me down” if I didn’t shut up. He told me to pack “my shit” and get the hell out of his house. He also had his fist pulled back ready to hit something. It sure as hell wasn’t going to be me. I’ve been there, done that, never again.

As usual there was no answer at my twin sister’s house. How am I suppose to feel? What do I do with all of the feelings I keep stuffing down inside. At some point I will crack and everything will come out like an exploding volcano. His dialysis doctor put him on an antidepressant that has made him worse. I know it well and knew it would make him worse. No one listened. img_20170104_104124_302.jpg

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About darie73

I have lived with Bipolar Disorder since my early teens. I have lived with Social Anxiety Disorder for even longer. I self-medicated with alcohol for over 20 years, that's how long it took to get a diagnosis. I'm open and honest about my mental health so hopefully one day the system will change. View all posts by darie73

7 responses to “Living With And Taking Care Of A Parent

  • Echo

    Hmm…ok first the bird…can they have coconut oil? If so its a “miracle drug” for other animals and if she licks it off it’s still works. Poor baby…that looks painful ): I understand dads rage at feeling responsible…years ago I did the same with a dog I loved (before I knew I was BP) and the Hub had to point it out and give me some hard truths that made me cry but it also made me admit to myself for the first time that I was NOT ok. I’m not sure we can do that with parents due to “powdered butt syndrome” and personally I’m an enabler but if you think you can, and that it’ll help, try. Some seeds take a while to grow I know I’m taking forever. If you can’t talk to him maybe he has an old friend or someone who would be willing? I understand raging against the dying of the light and all but…he’d get a lot more joy out it if he could accept his position (and some help). Good luck sweetie heart goes out to you guys xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • darie73

      My dad is has always been stubborn. He refuses to ask anyone for help. This is how bad he is: While mowing the lawn he fell backwards and brought the lawnmower over his foot. He walked up the stairs in the backyard with half of his shoe shredded and some toes missing. I came out of the house, saw him and freaked out. All he said was “Can you get me a towel”. He didn’t think he needed to go to the Hospital. He REFUSES TO THROW UP!! Instead he swallows it back down. In his head he’s Superman. The bird is so much worse. She will most likely die. If there was a way I could grab her I would take care of her myself. But the only person she doesn’t bite is my Dad. If they want to they can bite your finger to the bone and break it. I’m sick to my stomach about it. Not to mention today is my Birthday and it’s just another day. My dad keeps suggesting more shock therapy. Ugh!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Echo

      Well first of all happy fkn birthday! Take a day off even if you couldn’t today…tomorrow maybe? Just you gotta have some chill space lady hmm…got a good set of headphones? They have changed my life…having music surround my brains. I saw a thing on Pinterest today for pets with wounds they won’t leave alone…but it requires kinda stuffing the bird into a sock…which sounds impossible now fk…it looked comfy and effective but I did not consider the wrestling match getting the animal in. Stupid Pinterest. Omg your dad…I was like that for my first 25ish yrs but then my brain broke lol. Bc it’s fkn impossible tbh…you know carrying all that weight in your head it’s a lot of work. Maybe he’s…tired?
      I know you’re WAY more informed than I but I read your shock therapy post and girl…I do not like the sound of it. I’m sorry. But…what if you went into lil girl mode again and needed ppl to care for you? Also your poor brains…I love the idea of a great yr and getting to feel normal. I want it so bad too. But some things are not worth the price ya know? Just sayin. Something about it concerns me. You’ll do the right thing tho. Whatever that may be. Xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  • Rob

    I would never condone his behavior towards you, andviy so sorry you’re going through this. Let me ask you, is it posdiblebin some way that his reaction is resultant of feelings he’s having about his condition that seems to be keeping him from something that he so dearly loved to do and now can’t do and you confronting him about the bird somehow triggered his sadness and anger over his condition so that he projected it into you? Or am I going through too much therapy lol.

    Liked by 2 people

    • darie73

      No you are absolutely right! The problem is I know this and he knows it too. He has apologized for it before. The problem is he understands that my Conversion Disorders stems from a violent event/events but it doesn’t stop him from using his “Darth Vader” voice while yelling at me or acting aggressive by pulling his arm back and making a fist. He’s also broken down the bathroom door while I was in it because I changed the living room around. And still nothing from my sister. I was going to go somewhere for my Birthday to relax a little. I can’t even make a decision or put my thoughts together to do it. lol

      Liked by 1 person

    • Rob

      Well focus in hard and get yourself to go somewhere and chill!

      Liked by 1 person

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