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To be fuming ?

(152 Posts)
gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 11:02:34


I take my elderly father shopping twice a week, Tuesdays and Fridays as well as seeing to his other appointments etc. He is a creature of habit and for some reason once a week isn’t enough. I have done this for years. On top of this I look after my 4 DGC 2 days a week (including an overnight) which is fine when they are at school as I do the school runs and take my dad shopping with the baby in tow. The other 3-4 days of the week I am at work 9-5.

Today and tomorrow I have the 4 DGC on my own. I texted my father this morning to remind him that I wouldn’t be able to take him shopping as normal as I can’t fit everyone in the car and the older DGC wouldn’t want to trail around a supermarket today anyway. I told him I will try and take him tomorrow when DH gets back (he’s working away for a few days) .

The text I got back from my dad was..... oh I have had an invite out to lunch from your sister and her partner anyway so wouldn’t want to go shopping . Really? Oh yes they’re both on holiday this week. Well can you get them to take you for some shopping then?

Five minutes later a telephone call from my sister saying “we are taking dad out to lunch but won’t have time to take him shopping as we’re heading away for a few days later today”

So for once in a bloody blue moon she could have taken OUR dad for some shopping but no, her time is precious . Mine is obviously worthless and I am fuming.

Sorry about the rant.

kittylester Tue 13-Aug-19 11:07:48

You are not being unreasonable gilly but I think your sister (and, to an extent, your dad) is being really thoughtless.

kittylester Tue 13-Aug-19 11:08:10

And, rant away! grin

Luckygirl Tue 13-Aug-19 11:09:55

Oh - fume away! Entirely justified!

Maybe when she returns from her precious "me" time (how I hate that expression!!!) you could sit her down and decide some sort of rota for taking Dad shopping.

4 GC all day!!! - I take my hat off to you!

dragonfly46 Tue 13-Aug-19 11:17:09

Oh I totally get it Gilly. You are not being unreasonable.

For years after my parents moved nearer to us I would take my mother out every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning shopping as it was then my DH played golf. My parents felt I had nothing better to do.
It got to the stage where I really resented it. I was also on call for the middle of the night calls and the evening calls when one of them had fallen or my dad's catheter had come out.

I am an only child but would have loved some one to help ease the load. Your sister, I think, needs reminding of her responsibility.

gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 11:21:23

I just said that exact thing to my DH on the phone lucky I’ve done this for years and years and can count the times on one hand she has ever offered to help. My sister is very selfish with her time and tends to do exactly what she wants to do when she wants to do it. After all I don’t have a social life so why should I spoil hers? I am probably being bitchy now but wonder just who is paying for this lunch out? My sister is always broke and her partner is very tight fisted so I suspect it will, be my dad.

gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 11:23:56

The thing is dragonfly I have looked after my dad, my late mum and grandma, which was almost a full time job, since I can remember and it’s just assumed that I will do it. I am now starting to feel quite bitter which is nasty I know.

Minniemoo Tue 13-Aug-19 11:24:46

Carry on ranting, gillybob!

Been in a similar position with my sister and it's infuriating!

annep1 Tue 13-Aug-19 11:30:22

Gillybob as someone on GN said to me its time to speak up. You shouldn't have to though. I dont understand your sister letting you cope with so much alone. Time to sort out an equal schedule. I don't know how you manage. Not much time/energy left for a social life..

cornergran Tue 13-Aug-19 11:33:49

Of course you aren't being unreasonable gilly. In fact you have been more than reasonable. Is some straight talking with your sister and gently with your dad called for or would it fall on deaf ears? It sounds vital now that you are clear and firm about what is possible for you, but of course that takes energy. What's the saying? Always ask a busy person? Time to be too busy sometimes if you can bear to.

We fell into a pattern of having my parents to Sunday lunch, then my Dad alone after my Mum died. We discovered once a pattern was set it was almost impossible to change it, the expectation had been set in concrete. I vowed I'd never do that to our children. So far we've managed not to, having said that their chaotic lives don't actually allow for patterns!

You have such a busy life, I'm in awe of your capability. Having spent the day yesterday with one grandchild and two of us I know I'd never manage four at once. You're an absolute star.

Septimia Tue 13-Aug-19 11:35:20

Been in a similar position with BiL - he lived nearer FiL than us but seldom even visited. It is infuriating.

GrannySomerset Tue 13-Aug-19 11:36:09

Your dad likes to shop twice a week but it can’t be necessary. Time to do one big shop a week only? What will happen if you are ill? A bit of future proofing might be wise, for your sake.

Nonnie Tue 13-Aug-19 11:40:22

At first I thought it was going to be about stuck in his ways and wanting to do the shopping on the same day. How wrong I was! Perhaps when sister gets back you could have a chat with her about sharing the tasks more? I know its hard when we have allowed ourselves to become the doer.

Witzend Tue 13-Aug-19 11:54:41

Time to put your foot down - hard! - and tell your dad and sister that in future it's a once a week shop only - or else the 2nd will be done by your sister.
If they make a fuss, let them. Say it's non-negotiable.

One thing I've learnt in this life is that if you make yourself into a doormat - however kindly and helpfully - people will wipe their feet on you.

leyla Tue 13-Aug-19 12:01:21

I agree - time for one shop a week, and explain that this event is what has led you to make that decision. Tell both DF and Sister that it is time for Sister to take on her share.
Tell Dad that you will pop over for a coffee or that you can go out for lunch but that you will not go to the shop!

EllanVannin Tue 13-Aug-19 12:23:53

How about a tattoo on your forehead-----MUG !
You've got it tough,gillybob and I know how difficult it is to refuse everyone but you really need some time out before you meet yourself coming back.

It's as you get older that you'll feel the effects of having worked hard and the way you've scurried around and it will take ages before you'll feel anything like " human ". I know because I've done it myself in the past and wore myself out.

You're a willing horse and unfortunately you'll be put on. xx

eazybee Tue 13-Aug-19 12:29:27

I hope I don't offend you, but I have noticed that you cheerfully do an awful lot for your family, as well as helping out financially; do they appreciate it?

Why does your father need to be taken shopping twice a week as he lives on his own; surely one shopping expedition most weeks should suffice? Your sister's attitude is not unusual, I gather, (no siblings) but dig your heels now, while you are angry, and insist that she takes more responsibility.

You should start asserting your needs; I was very surprised on another post when you mentioned that you had no female friends, as you are always the first with kind words and practical advice on here. Coping with four grandchildren at least two days a week is hard work and very time-consuming, even though I am sure it gives you, and them, pleasure most of the time; you also recently devoted precious spare time to creating a new garden for one adult child.
I really hope you take a much needed break, and start devoting some of your limited time, to you.

Callistemon Tue 13-Aug-19 13:05:33

EV My friend used to say that: "have I got MUG written across my forehead?"
Her mother and sister took her for granted and sadly, she died before her mother, far too young.

You sound so kind, gillybob but you need to be kind to yourself too and assert yourself but nicely before you blow your top!


BlueBelle Tue 13-Aug-19 13:18:36

I once had a moan about being an only child and it all falling on my shoulders but was reminded That however many siblings there are it always always seems to be one it all falls on
I can well understand your annoyance and frustration How about started to make some demands on the others

sodapop Tue 13-Aug-19 13:24:55

Gillybob time to take a stand with your family. They are all expecting a lot of you and you are letting them do it. Decide what you can comfortably fit in to your time including your own leisure. Then sit down with your family and negotiate. Your time is just as important as everyone else's.

maddyone Tue 13-Aug-19 13:25:02

My sister does sweet nothing as well. My mum moved 250 miles to live in a sheltered apartment near to my house because my sister wouldn’t even get on a bus/train to go and visit her, she lived 20 miles from mum and doesn’t drive but refused to use public transport. When mum was moving, my sister refused to visit or help out with packing, she did absolutely sweet nothing. We arranged everything, soliciters, moving company, everything, including driving up country to collect mum and bring her down. DH then drove back up country a couple of days later to finalise completion and help removal company to ensure all went well. Now I take her shopping, take her to all her medical appointments, take her out, bring her to our house for visits and meals. My sister? She has visited twice in the last year and a half, and expects to go out for meals and socialising. Mum pays. Mum also pays for her accommodation in the visitors room in the sheltered apartment.

maddyone Tue 13-Aug-19 13:26:58

Incidentally my sister did nothing to help when my dad was dying, but that’s another story.
Gillybob, your sister sounds just as selfish as mine.

Namsnanny Tue 13-Aug-19 13:45:33

Rant away gillybob, better on here than in rl! It may give you the opportunity to plan your next conversation with sister and dad!
Do try to point out to him how nice it would be for him to see more of your sister...perhaps once a week to go shopping together??
BTW I could be mistaken but was it you who took her father to the bank to get money for said sister, and father Mistakenly thought it was for you?
Anyway, you’ve done above and beyond what’s required well done!

Namsnanny Tue 13-Aug-19 13:46:40

Sorry everyone, I forgot about paragraphs!sad

Jacks1 Tue 13-Aug-19 13:46:59

Do feel for you and understand your rant. Your time is important too and to feel unappreciated is not very nice. I'm a full time working granny too and look after grandkids regularly. Havent got my parents as they have passed now.

Oldwoman70 Tue 13-Aug-19 14:01:04

As others have said - rant away! Your sister is taking advantage of your kind nature. Is it possible your father says he needs to go shopping twice a week because he sees it as an excuse to get out of the house.

It is difficult to say no to a parent but perhaps a quiet chat over a cup of tea explaining your other commitments may make him more accepting of only one shopping trip a week (or suggest he ask your sister to take him)

Keeper1 Tue 13-Aug-19 14:02:28

Gosh Gillybob when do you have time for yourself. You sound so kind and giving and someone said that you do not have any friends, Well it is hard to meet people as we get older but you have to devote some time to yourself So that you can meet people. As others have already said perhaps you should speak to your sister to share the responsibility after all he is her father too.

Wheniwasyourage Tue 13-Aug-19 14:03:58

Oh dear, gillybob, of course YANBU!


mumofmadboys Tue 13-Aug-19 14:07:03

I would let a week past. Then when you are calm say to your dad that taking him shopping once a week is all you can manage but you could pop in for a restful cuppa another time. Then ask your sister if once a month she could do the shopping trip to give you a break. Tell them both you have been feeling tired and washed out recently and you know you need to decrease the things you do to preserve your wellbeing. Smile sweetly and keep calm! I hope you get some time to take it easy.

KatyK Tue 13-Aug-19 14:16:55

gilly You are, and I would imagine always have been, a willing horse with a kind nature. Unfortunately people take advantage of willing horses.

petra Tue 13-Aug-19 14:28:32

If it was me there would be no 'chats' or ' conversations'
There would just be a text to say sorry,dad, can't make the shopping this week
No explanations. No need to.
The onus is then on him to make alternative arrangements.

GrannyGravy13 Tue 13-Aug-19 14:52:14

gillybob, you can only do so much, rant was appropriate 💐

ginny Tue 13-Aug-19 15:15:39

You are not being unreasonable.

You sound to be such a kind person. However, the only person who can do anything about your situation is you.

mcem Tue 13-Aug-19 16:03:24

Overstretching yourself and feeling stressed is not a good way to go. Maybe this well-justified rant is just what you need to stop and reassess.
Remember the advice that you have to put on your own oxygen mask before you can help others.

gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 16:19:55

Well first of all ... sorry for the rant and thank you to everyone for kind and understanding responses .

It’s true eazybee I don’t have any real life friends at all . My own fault I suppose.

I have always been the do-er in the family so this is nothing new really . I think I was just feeling a bit sorry for myself .

Yes Namsnanny you are correct in saying it was me who had to “borrow” money from my dad for my sister ( to get her out of a tight mess) . He ended up making it a gift to her but it was me who got the “telling off” as though he was giving it to me !

To those who have asked why he needs shopping twice a week . Good question . I don’t know ? I tell him every week to make sure he has got enough in to last . I even plan his meals with him. He just texts or rings me the following Friday /Tuesday first thing and reminds me he needs fresh shopping . What can I say ? He has got a social life ( unlike me) and sees friends at least 3 times a week so he’s not lonely .

It’s silly how little things break the camels back isn’t it?

Thank you all again for listening . We are all just sitting drying out, after we got soaked in yet another downpour .

I don’t know what I would do without Gransnet x

Gonegirl Tue 13-Aug-19 16:25:02

Well, tbh, if she is going away later on today perhaps she really won't have time to take him shopping. I think your dad could have put it much more nicely when he answered your message.

You do do a lot. It can't be easy for you. Sorry you are feeling so bad. x

Gonegirl Tue 13-Aug-19 16:25:58

I thin k you need to suggest your sister takes a turn with the shopping trips. You have to speak up for yourself.

gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 16:39:48

Yes Gonegirl you are right, she may not have had time later today . But what about every other day ? This morning ? Yesterday? .

I don’t begrudge her some time away and maybe I am being unreasonable after all . My dad wouldn’t think that I might be upset/ cross ( he doesn’t do feelings) and would just enjoy his lunch out . smile

Day6 Tue 13-Aug-19 16:41:53

You are not being unreasonable gilly. You sister is being thoughtless, as is your Dad who could have texted your sister to see if she could take him shopping.

Your post struck a chord with me because when my elderly Mum was alive, all the work, caring, outings, fixing things, Drs appointments, shopping, company etc, etc was down to me as my siblings lived further away. I was the only one with no husband (divorced) a full time job, young children and a life full of worry. Looking after my Mum was a labour of love, because she was lovely and appreciative of my help (and apologetic too because she felt she was a burden - she wasn't) but my brother and sisters let me get on with it. They thought they were doing me a favour if they came home at the weekends to see Mum for a cup of tea. They really thought that was sharing the load! I used to fume too.

It seems the more you do, the more you are expected to do gilly. It is good that you are capable but you could do with a break too. Some people have a thick skin and no empathy or conscience it seems.

Summerlove Tue 13-Aug-19 16:50:30

This is exactly the time to rant “irl” at your family.

You need to set firm boundaries with them.

They will run you ragged until you have nothing left to give, then move to the next willing person. Let that process start now. You can’t be the only person in your family who does not get to enjoy your life.

When would you have time for friends if you had them? It’s not hard to see why they fell by the wayside

What would you advise your daughter/granddaughter in this situation if they were being so badly taken advantage of?

Nannarose Tue 13-Aug-19 16:54:30

Just sending sympathy. Sometimes it can be harder to try to break a habit than to go along with it. Also I guess that you want to spend precious time with your GCs?
It's just the lack of appreciation!

When life got bit difficult for my elderly parents,about 20 years ago, I cut my work hours (and therefore pension contributions) so I could help out a bit - not physical caring, but just checking in, sorting stuff out and taking them shopping. I didn't expect my siblings to help, for lots of practical & financial reasons. That was all done & over 10+ years ago.
However, recently, during a completely different discussion, my BiL said 'it would have been nice to drop working hours before retirement like Rose did, but we can't afford it'. I said 'I didn't do it for fun, I did it because parents needed me' and he scoffed.
Suddenly, I felt all the resentment that had never been there during those years - just because he hadn't appreciated it!

gillybob Tue 13-Aug-19 16:55:26

When would you have time for friends if you had them? It’s not hard to see why they fell by the wayside

You are right Summerlove I wouldn’t have time anyway grin

My DD knows the situation full well and knows I would never want this for her, not ever !

midgey Tue 13-Aug-19 16:59:45

gillybob these are for you! flowers

dragonfly46 Tue 13-Aug-19 17:07:30

No no no Gilly you are not being unreasonable, nor are you are nasty person for feeling bitter.

You are probably one of the kindest people I have come across. You are there for everyone despite doing a job you hate.

I don't know how hard it is talking to siblings but I know how hard it is to say no to parents. They can be so unreasonable. I am not sure what I can suggest to help but hope it helped a little to offload on here.

I do envy your closeness to your children and grandchildren though.

Brunette10 Tue 13-Aug-19 17:12:06

Gillybob - I hope you have calmed a little. It is so unfair you have all the responsibility for your dad, I think perhaps a little talk with your DS may help, I certainly hope so. You will run yourself ragged I'm afraid and be no use to anyone, that's not a life! Rant away whenever if it makes you feel better. Wishing you well, I hope you get it sorted very soon - flowers

annep1 Tue 13-Aug-19 17:15:24

Gillybob after reading all the comments it seems to me you care more about everyone else than yourself. Your needs/ wants are just as valid as theirs.
Secondly you are too kind (soft) which allows others to put upon you. (Already you are backing down on criticising sister).
Time for some hard thinking.
You can be kind without being a doormat. You will get more respect.

GillT57 Tue 13-Aug-19 17:35:51

Rant away, that's what we are here for! I would suggest you wait to tackle your sister because if you are anything like me, you will get all emotional. Stay calm, keep your powder dry and then tell, not suggest to, your sister that she is taking your father shopping every other week. By the way, is this holidaying sister the same sister who got you to borrow money from your father because she was broke? Hmmm.

FarNorth Tue 13-Aug-19 17:36:02

Gillybob, tell dad you can't continue taking him shopping twice a week. You can visit him on one of the days, if he likes.
If he insists he needs two shopping trips, suggest he asks Sis to do one of them.
If he texts on a 'wrong' day, reply reminding him you can't do it.

Continuing as you have been doing means they will continue to expect it.
You need to tell them what's changing and stick to it.

Glammy57 Tue 13-Aug-19 17:37:49

gillybob. 💐☕️

petra Tue 13-Aug-19 17:53:08

Your still doing it and maybe I am being unreasonable
'Some' of your family are being thoughtless/ uncaring/ selfish and your still putting yourself in the wrong: I could shake you ( but in the nicest possible way) 😩

Auntieflo Tue 13-Aug-19 18:53:57

Gillybob, just caught up with this thread, and everybody has said all that needed to be said, so I can't add anything new, except you are one wonderful mum, wife, grandma, and friend to all of us here on GN.
Chin up, gird your loins and tell it like it is to your selfish sister.
flowers and yet more flowers

annep1 Tue 13-Aug-19 20:22:20


gmelon Tue 13-Aug-19 21:16:45

Take your Father shopping once a week.
For the second lot of groceries Father could tell you what he needs and you buy it at your own convenience. Drop it off and have a cup of tea and a chat.
As for your sister I doubt she'll be of help with shopping.

Lessismore Tue 13-Aug-19 21:21:11

So, to recap , you are doing several jobs which would incur salaries at a basic rate of about £ 10.00 an hour?

Must add up to a small fortune??????

Cherrytree59 Tue 13-Aug-19 21:22:24

Gilly up until very recently, I was also part of the sandwich generation trying to spread myself between parent/in law and DC and DGC , it was bloody hard work and relentless!

If you wear yourself out and become ill everyone will have to manage, so time for the worm to turn.

A straight talk with your sister.
And a compromise of only one shopping day with your father.
After all he was quite happy to for go it for lunch with your sister.

Is it possible that shopping trips are really just outings and is not because he needs shopping twice a week?

Tedber Tue 13-Aug-19 21:47:47

Gilly you have been given some great advice here what are YOU going to do to change things?

First of all tackle dad....."No dad I am going shopping once a week end of"

Then sister.... "I am going shopping for dad once a week, can you help out the other day"

Then Children " I can do x,y,z but am busy x,y,z.

Unless YOU do something about it, things will never change.
Be kind, but assertive. YOU have a life to lead as well and everyone should not be looking at you to solve ALL their problems. As said has to come from you to stop it all.

Buttonjugs Wed 14-Aug-19 10:15:52

My elderly father came to live with me two and a half years ago. One brother takes him shopping once a week but the other one, who lives 13 miles away only comes to see him three times a year, birthday, Father’s Day and around Christmas Day. I feel bitter because I have been almost entirely responsible for both parents towards the end of their lives and to compound the issue they were both very selfish people and rubbish parents. Everyone knows that I am feeling very negative about him being here except for my dad and brothers!

justrolljanet Wed 14-Aug-19 10:21:44

Don't get me started on this one ! I really feel for you, x x

Juliepuk Wed 14-Aug-19 10:22:25

You sound like a wonderful and kind person but you need to put your foot down with Dad, sister and kids as your time is becoming their time. I agree with Tedber, you need to be more assertive. That doesn't mean nasty just be firm. Good luck.

henetha Wed 14-Aug-19 10:25:36

You're not the unreasonable one!. You are being taken for granted. Put your foot down, - in a kindly way, -but be firm.

jean6enie Wed 14-Aug-19 10:25:54

GO ON STRIKE! Totally unfair that you are bearing all this weight. Grandchildren are exhausting - two days a week plus a night, you are a saint!

Philippa111 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:26:28

It’s definitely time to take your power back, or find it for the first time. The current situation is a well worn groove but you can step out of it. I think to change patterns takes persistence and courage as the other people involved will want to keep you exactly in your current position as it suits them all very well. I think making a specific time and saying I need to talk to you about this as opposed to just dropping it into the conversation works well. It let’s others know you are serious.
You are entitled to a life and freedom. It sounds like you take on whatever is asked of you. The word ‘no’ is a good one! It can be said firmly and kindly. Breaking unhelpful patterns takes a few attempts usually. Stand strong and just keep saying to yourself I deserve space and time for me. Get your alies to support you and back you up. Good luck.

Greciangirl Wed 14-Aug-19 10:26:31

I would be fuming, I know if that was me.
Also I would be extremely upset to think that I was being taken for granted. And you are being taken for granted.

If I was you, I would get in touch with sister and explain your position. She may not realise how busy you are. If need be, sound desperate. She really does need to know how things are.

inishowen Wed 14-Aug-19 10:26:47

You have so much on your plate. In every family there seems to be one that does it all. You're that person. Maybe it's time to have a chat with your sister. Lay it on a bit, saying you are so stressed and can't cope with all you have to do. She must step up and help you out a bit.

Ffion63 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:32:50

I feel for you, my dad is now in a home and I get all the abuse, complaints from him, moans, abusive and demanding phone calls yet when my siblings call or visit they find him in great form. He is full of chat about them coming and what they did. I remember my mother finding the same thing when she looked after my grandpa. Very difficult. Xxx

jaylucy Wed 14-Aug-19 10:34:11

Yep, can understand why you're fuming!
Your sister could very well have said that she'd take him shopping BEFORE taking him for lunch, even if it wasn't for all of the things he'd normally get.
I had a similar thing - i used to do some shopping for an aunt - one week I couldn't because I had had to work on what usually would have been my day off, so rushed around in my lunch hour getting a few things for her to keep going through the next week. Dropped them off on my way home. Just finishing cooking my dinner (late because I'd stopped off) and the phone rang - SiL - to tell me that she'd called in to see the aunt and was told I was at work so no biscuits SiL didn't think to go to the shops because she thought I'd be upset if she did !!! Yes and she didn't seem to understand when I got cross when I pointed out that I only had 1 day off that week and she was on school holidays!

Foxygran Wed 14-Aug-19 10:36:25

Of course you’re fuming.
So would I be!
But what can you do?
Maybe tell your sister how you feel in the gentlest way, but she is likely to take offence. So is it worth it? I’ve been there and got that t-shirt. Telling my sister how I felt only resulted in defensive actions, making the whole situation worse. Though to be honest, I think I was more aggressive than gentle because you just get so frustrated 🙁

Nannan2 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:37:59

Yes time to make a rota.and when shes back tell her your having a holiday too and then book one.and make sure your GC parents know too- you& your hubby deserve a break! Is there no one else can do childcare for them? Other parents seem to have nurseries,child minders,after school clubs,etc set up if they are working parents? You need to stop everyone taking advantage of you.and help your dad do shopping online to be delivered.its a godsend it really is.or organise him meals on wheels etc.(and AGE UK do a stellar job providing people to 'help' with cleaning or taking them shopping etc for a few pounds an hr if it can be afforded.)(your sister cant be so broke if she can afford to 'go away' can she?) Theres even hospital transport volunteers can come collect him for appts and bring him home again if hes able to go alone to these.(or other arrangements for kids& shopping would free you up for just his hospital need it sorting now as otherwise you'l run yourself into the ground& then whose going to do it all then?They would have to make other arrangements,so let them do it now!

Hm999 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:46:40

I've heard similar sibling stories from others - and raged on their behalf too. You have a right to be very hacked off, but sadly none of them will change IMO. You're a lovely daughter and grannie though ⚘⚘⚘

Sugarpufffairy Wed 14-Aug-19 10:50:34

I used to be in the same position as you. I don't know how I did it.
My parents are now dead. I became more in demand for babysitting and child minding.
I was diagnosed with a permanent illness. The DC could not be bothered to accompany me to certain appointments.
I then noticed that when the DGC were dropped off or picked up the DC were in such a tearing rush that I was hardly able to have any conversation with them.
I dont have any local friends and a few others have died. I am alone a lot now that I expressed my displeasure with the way I was being treated but it is better than having my own much loved DC abusing my good nature.

JANH Wed 14-Aug-19 10:51:03

Families, so many problems.
I am sorry that you are doing so much for your family, you obviously need some down time.
We have had experience of this type of situation. We always took my mil shopping however she felt guilty as we were both working full-time. She asked her daughter to take her shopping, big mistake. she piled her own shopping in mils trolley, mil paid and sil even charged her £5 to get in the car. Please be careful as if she is not good with money, you could have more problems on your hands letting her take your father shopping.
Is it possible for you/him to do an on-line shop?

Chinesecrested Wed 14-Aug-19 10:52:01

It's time you went on an extended holiday and let them all sort themselves out. Do you know anyone in Australia? Would a world cruise be out of the question?

GabriellaG54 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:53:34

It's my view that far too many GNers
allow relatives and friends to ruin their lives by asking and indeed expecting too much.
GNs do an amazing job of juggling childcare with their often elderly parents needs and wants plus financial help to AC and often the problems associated with separation, no contact and arguments, all the while putting their own health, social life and retirement hopes on a back burner.
That's a heck of a burden, at a time when one hopes to be enjoying a lessening of responsibity and more time to enjoy the fruits of many years of employment and bringing up a family to stand on their own two feet.

Tea and cake Wed 14-Aug-19 10:54:55

If your dad gets out and has a social life is it impossible for him to do some of his own shopping? Just a thought. And is there online shopping serving his area.? I'm horrified how much you do and how little time you have for yourself x

lovebeigecardigans1955 Wed 14-Aug-19 10:59:23

You know what Solzhenitskin (I think) wrote, "The willing workhorse is always asked to take on an extra load but the lazy man is never asked," As true now as when it was first written.

Do you ever manage to get away for a break? Now's the time. Let others pick up the slack - it's about time.

I assume your dad lives alone - why on earth does he need to shop three times a week? From now on it must be cut down to once.

I feel for you gilly you're probably too nice to say no and as a result are being taken advantage of. If you rant in RL you'll then feel guilty but you must put yourself first.

mamaa Wed 14-Aug-19 11:01:49

You always send such upbeat posts so this one really shows you are at the end of your tether.
Whilst you are feeling this way harness the adrenalin and bite the bullet to suggest to dad that due to other calls on your time you'll organise a weekly online shop for dad-to be delivered at the same time each week so he'll need to be in -and you can take him for any top-ups required later that week and maybe have a coffee with him whilst out so its less of a chore-unless that in itself would make it a chore!
I do a 'big shop' on line once aa month and have found that repeat orders take no time at all to submit and the same order can be sent weekly with few tweaks here and there if required. ( I do it via the app on my phone- great time saver).
Good Luck with whatever you decide to do and I agree with all the others up thread- if you become ill and worn out you wont be able to help anyone so they need to be a bit more considerate of your needs too.
ps This suggestion of course has a flaw in that if you shop at LIDL or ALDI ( btw love the middle of LIDL am addicted to it!) they don't do which case ignore my suggestion! smile

Mumto4 Wed 14-Aug-19 11:04:26

Something a dear friend said to me Todays favour is tomorrows chore. I would br angry as well gillybob.

Doodledog Wed 14-Aug-19 11:12:57

Can your father get shopping delivered? Maybe take him once a week so he can see what's available, and when you get back you could help him to place an order for his regular things. It might be that you do this once a month, as there is a minimum spend; but once the precedent is set, you have a system in place for the times when you can't take him. 'Ok, Dad, I'm off scuba diving next week, so let's do a two in one order this time.'?

If you accept that shopping twice a week isn't necessary, then maybe that's your sister's point of view too, and with the best will in the world, you can't expect her to do it just because you have done it.

My sister rings our mum on her way to work every day. It suits her to do it, as she walks to work and it passes the time, as well as making sure that mum is safe. I don't work, and suffer from insomnia, so it's not something I would ever have set up - 7.45am is the middle of the night to me. I wouldn't be happy if I were expected to call on a 50/50 basis, although I would happily call later in the day.

I know that this is a different situation; but the principle is the same. You got into the habit of a twice-weekly shopping trip - your sister didn't.

I agree that as a one-off, she seems unreasonable. Thoughtless, in fact. But that is between the two of you to sort out, and will require some very assertive behaviour from you. How you do it is up to you, obviously; but you could start by listing what your dad needs from his children, and share it in a way that suits everyone, then add on the things that you want to do 'just because', and do them without expecting your sister to do the same. She might not realise that you think she is falling short, and a frank conversation could clear the air. Who knows - she might even be feeling pushed out.

Good luck smile

Anneeba Wed 14-Aug-19 11:13:11

Could your husband intervene? Maybe contact your sister and dad, saying he's a bit worried about how tired you are feeling, although he is not surprised considering how much you have taken on helping out everyone in the family? He wonders whether the load might be shared a little more? That you are such h a kind and giving person but he really feels it is time someone gave some thought to helping you etc... Yes folk will take anything offered to them unfortunately, but it is time someone helped you stand up for yourself because as a giver it is often hard to play it tough. What about booking a U3A course that means you are not free on Fridays or Tuesdays? Good

JulieMM Wed 14-Aug-19 11:18:24

If you’ve never told your sister how you feel then she probably assumes (wrongly) that you’re happy with these arrangements you have with your dad. Definitely time to put her straight!

Nannan2 Wed 14-Aug-19 11:20:07

No your NOT unreasonable.But the others all ARE.even your own are expecting you to be their free childcare- i understand you want time with your GC,but you dont seem to be just 'being a granny' you have become their childminder- which is different altogether- it stops you enjoying them and makes for resentment- the oldest GC,as you say,is starting to sound a bit resentful of going all the time on these 'shopping trips' and rightly so! As they get older,kids want to see friends or do their own thing in their holidays,not be 'babysat'(as they see it) and be dragged round shops with oldies-sorry,just seeing it as older kids might?Time for your own son/ daughter to sort out their own 'age appropriate' childcare for each child maybe?And you could get your dad 'fresher for longer' loaves& filtered milk on one shopping day,then order online for other day or get him to ask your sister- with supermarkets open later or 24hrs she could take him after work or shop for him with a txted list??Put your foot down! Point out to your dad hes got a better social life than you,and youre changing that now.Join a club,or an evening class,Book that holiday for you& hubby.DO IT NOWsmileGood luck!

Barmeyoldbat Wed 14-Aug-19 11:22:04

Gilly I take my daughter shopping, mainly to see that she gets the essential and its a pain in the butt. So now we do an online shop, mostly at ASDA. We have an account in her name, she goes into it does her shopping then phones me. I will go in and look at it, check it over, make a few suggestions and checks and then pay, using her card and arrange delivery. Could you maybe try this with your dad now and again, especially during school holidays.

Laurely Wed 14-Aug-19 11:24:01

Gillybob: what struck me when I read your post was that after you said your father is a 'creature of habit', your list of what you cram into each week shows that you are one also. And habits are HARD to break, whether they are good ones or bad ones.

While good routines help you to cram in an awful lot, when you are doing it all, it is really difficult to sort out what only you can do from what others could help with, and to put the energy into getting them on board. To me, your posts show someone who loves to be helpful and is generous with her time, but perhaps not very good at saying 'no'?

You need to be able to recharge your batteries, and perhaps also to enjoy the fact that you have a DH? Is there a day centre, or U3A branch, or something similar nearby to give your father more interests; or a volunteer shopping service to do some of that? Don't wear yourself out!

(Perhaps google books and online articles on self-assertiveness if you decide to have the difficult conversations with your father and sister.)

Good luck!

Nannan2 Wed 14-Aug-19 11:32:01

Yes the online shop is probably the way to go- they even bring it in if you want!(i know tesco do) and if aldi or lidl are preferred take him there on your ONE shop day!(theyre open later too these days) Also,to Buttonjugs?maybe you too can get your other brother to do more,or visit more? If hes only 13 miles away thats hardly any distance these days,even on public transport,its like the next town,not other side of country.Not fair only you& other brother should do it all if hes only a few miles away.hmm

sarahanew Wed 14-Aug-19 12:00:10

Oh isn't it always the way with familys! I can understand your annoyance. Maybe you could offer to take him out for lunch next week, that'd be nice good quality time together and tell him you haven't got time to take him shopping? But you won't, because you are the reliable, practical one in the family that is there to help when it's needed. Your choice though, you have to decide what you will do

Mealybug Wed 14-Aug-19 12:02:23

Similar thing with my sister and brothers, my hubby is disabled and I'm his full time carer, however when Mum was alive I took her shopping twice a week, for a game of bingo and looked after her finances and took her to hospital appointments. My sister and brothers did nothing, yet when she passed away they took over all the arrangements without including me and my sister sat with Mum during her last hours, not letting me know till after she had gone how ill she was that night. I will never forgive her for that. It seems the more you do, the less thought of you are.

Candelle Wed 14-Aug-19 12:02:28

Just sending sympathy - I have a sister like this, so can empathise (mine upsticked - if there is such a word - to another continent after our mother had a stroke.....)..

You should 'have a word' with your sister and politely explain that you are a) not a doormat b) you share your father's genes therefore she should have more input.

Point out your other responsibilities (to your own children/grandchildren etc.) and that you have decided to try to be fairer to her - she can now share more of your father's care!

Worth a whirl...

harrigran Wed 14-Aug-19 12:03:28

Gilly, something has to change, you can not continue with this workload.
Your parents were not really kind to you in your hour of need, perhaps a gentle reminder to your father is in order.
Your sister is not pulling her weight but know from experience that you will be wasting your breath trying to have it out with her.
GC are the little people that keep us going.

Theoddbird Wed 14-Aug-19 12:19:35

Totally justified rant. How bloody inconsiderate of your sister.

GreenGran78 Wed 14-Aug-19 12:20:53

If Dad has a social life it sounds as though he is fairly active, and not lonely. He doesn't need to see you twice a week, and is just being selfish.
Put your foot down! Use that day for your own rest and relaxation. Write down your own weekly schedule, show it to your sister, and tell her it's time to pull her weight. If she's happy to take money and lunches from her father then she should be happy to help care for him.
Never mind making excuses for them! You are too nice for your own good!

Stansgran Wed 14-Aug-19 12:30:06

On Mumsnet I get annoyed when I see posters saying I'm fuming on your behalf yet here I am fuming on your behalf and I want to shake some sense into you and your family. all you need is an accident or an illness and I certainly don't wish it on anyone but how would they manage? And yes they would. Your father could take you for lunch and pay for it surely for all you do. Also from Mumsnet no is a complete sentence. If my premium bonds ever came up I would buy you a week's retreat on Iona on your own!. It would sort them out well and truly.

NainFron Wed 14-Aug-19 12:38:13

I agree with other replies - you're complaints are absolutely justified. However, complaining to your sister will only make her defensive and is unlikely to yield results. Try asking her for help in solving your dilemma. You want to help Dad but you also want to look after DGC. How would she do it? You admire her ability to have time to herself. Can she give you advice? What would be a fair sharing of responsibility, in her opinion? Satay calm while this discussion is happening. Allow her time to ponder. If she still won't help - then you can throw the book at her! Best wishes.

tickingbird Wed 14-Aug-19 12:40:21

Wow. I don’t know your age but you’re a gran so not in your youth and I couldn’t do all that you do. The GC alone would kill me! You do such a lot and you have every right to feel more than a little put upon. I’d be fuming too. However, as long as you continue to carry on in silence this situation won’t change. Have a word with Dad and sister and make it clear you need some help and a rest.

Mcrc Wed 14-Aug-19 12:51:57

People are creatures of habit and also, maybe, just maybe, he prefers shopping and your sister was using an excuse because she felt bad (maybe?) my sister took over the majority of care of my mother who had Alzheimer's and boy did she use it and also thrived on it. I am NOT saying this is the situation here. Please don't let it fester. Please talk to her and your dad

Mcrc Wed 14-Aug-19 12:53:56

Prefers shopping with you I meant to say. My sister always thought I was a selfish [email protected]"!! but in reality I got used to the way we did things and I sensed she wanted it that way so she could be in control. That was MY situation

dragonfly46 Wed 14-Aug-19 12:56:47

Mcrc I get the feeling you are justifying your situation.

There is no way Gilly is doing this to be in control. She is kind and caring and being taken advantage of.

grandtanteJE65 Wed 14-Aug-19 12:59:03

In my experience families always behave like this. There is one person, usually a daughter or sister who gets landed with everything as far as the elder generation is concerned. It doesn't matter how many brothers and sisters and in-laws you have.

You have taken childcare of grandchildren on as well.

So no, you are not being unreasonable.

In your place I would tell my father that I was only able to take him shopping once a week, as I was caring for the children as well. Let him ask your sister for help over and above what you can give.

TrendyNannie6 Wed 14-Aug-19 13:07:28

Gillybob you sound a wonderful caring lady as you say you have done things for years looking after ppl, I had also done the same but with me, I do put my foot down as you cannot please anyone all of the time , and y should you
: you need to split your self in four ways by the sound of it. I would tell your dad you can only manage one shop per week n if he wants more then your selfish sister should step up a bit

Madmaggie Wed 14-Aug-19 13:22:07

Gillybob yes you are right to feel taken for granted because you are. My parents took it for granted that I was on this earth to do their bidding - no excuses. Even when I was bringing up 3 children alone (one with special needs) & a nasty ex. I was doing cleaning & ironing for income while they were at school. Eventually finding a term tide pt job. Ex refused to pay maintenance or clothing for kiddies. But my F would phone me at work demand to know where I was because 'your mother' wants to go to town for a new hat or he wanted ginger beer etc etc the list was amazing. I'd explain I was working however I would offer them my half day off but they'd dismiss it. It got worse & worse, they'd say my DUTY was to them first. They used emotional blackmail, silences etc. Frankly nothing I did was enough. Certain items must be bought from specific shops, I was run ragged. I was walking or bus & carrying everything mine & theirs. Dad would always 'forget' to put things on the list so I was called back over & over. They refused help offered from others with the comment oh no thanks we have a daughter. My B did his best but lived an hours drive away, he gave our D a firm talking to several times but they could not see what they were doing. Eventually they agreed to have Wiltshire meals delivered which took a little pressure off. At one point they said I could move back home, leave my kids to themselves so I was on tap for them as they should come first. I was brought up under their thumb and couldn't have a blazing row but I tried reasoning. It really affected me badly over time & ended up needing counselling. At the time you don't realise what its doing to you it chips away at you. Decide what YOU want, stick to your guns I wish I had. In these times of home deliveries theres no need for you to be at beck and call. I made a large print sheet of shopping items they used, laminated it and gave it to them as a prompt as I would take shopping orders for them via phone.

Sleepygran Wed 14-Aug-19 13:27:56

Rant on,but at your sister now!
Sometimes the more we do the more people let us.
I used to help my dd as she has a few children,I'd do washing etc and once commented that it hadn't been put away after it sitting there a few days, she said if you don't like how we live, the don't come round or help out, so I stopped.
I rarely get invited round and she contacts her dad now and not me. It hurts, but I know why she does it, he dad goes and helps now, not me.