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Husbands disability threatening family harmony

(80 Posts)
Notjustaprettyface Sat 13-May-23 10:41:41

I posted a few weeks ago on my struggling with my husbands disability and received some very helpful replies for which I am grateful
Since then , my husband has had a short stint in hospital followed by a 72 he care package when he came back home
Last week , a social worker came to explore options of help for me and my husband
My husband doesn’t want / like carers so the social worker suggested our adult kids who live locally should help us more
He said I should have a conversation with them which I did but our son shouted me down being very rude at times and our daughter wasn’t much more forthcoming although she didn’t shout
They both have young families but when I said that tho the social worker he said : so what ? We all have families
So as I write this I am not on speaking terms with our son and don’t wish to see him
I don’t know what to do
Any words of advice please ?
Thank you

Primrose53 Sat 13-May-23 10:43:50

I didn’t see your original post. What is your husband’s disability?

Sago Sat 13-May-23 10:47:24

Get a care package.
You cannot expect your children to take on the care.

Bella23 Sat 13-May-23 10:53:55

I agree with Sago get a Care package and then you have the freedom to tell them what you want and need. With family, it is always a negotiation and if they have young families will be organising their own lives.
Don't take your sons shouting too badly try and make up. I admit I had to put the phone down on my mother until she realised I had family commitments in my house and she had to let the social services help. You need to override your husband's wishes and tell him this as well.

Germanshepherdsmum Sat 13-May-23 10:57:11

I also agree with Sago. It’s unfair to expect your children, with families of their own, to be their father’s carers. If your husband doesn’t want carers coming in, but needs them, tough.

Grandmabatty Sat 13-May-23 11:00:06

I think it was very unfair of you to ask your children to be carers for your husband, particularly when a package could be arranged.

Salti Sat 13-May-23 11:06:52

Sorry. I can understand how your children feel. Particularly if this is not just a short term arrangement. My sisters and I looked after our mother at her home between us at the end of her life and it was so disruptive to our own families.
I would tell your husband that he will have to accept carers and point out the obvious alternatives. Anything your own children do then will be extras, done willingly and will make for a much happier environment.

silverlining48 Sat 13-May-23 11:15:54

I don’t know how much help your dh needs and much as I understand, our children who are often too busy to meet up socially are unlikely to be prepared to be regular carers. Your dh has to accept and agree carers help which will obviously help you too. Otherwise a care home will be the next very expensive step.
Look after yourself because if you become ill you won’t be able to help him.

Callistemon21 Sat 13-May-23 11:22:29


Get a care package.
You cannot expect your children to take on the care.


However caring DC are, your husband cannot expect them to take on the care when they have jobs, families and their own homes.
The social worker needs to return and arrange a care package for your DH.

It can be utterly debilitating.

Callistemon21 Sat 13-May-23 11:26:03

They both have young families but when I said that tho the social worker he said : so what ? We all have families

The social worker is not doing the caring of your DH himself on top of his job and looking after a young family. That remark was totally out of order.

Fleur20 Sat 13-May-23 11:32:02

I bet you made the social workers day when you agreed to get your children to do what the social work department should be doing.
If your husband is refusing to accept help from carers, but is probably happy for you to struggle on.. you have to tell him that is not going to happen. That you are not able to do that, physically or mentally.
At that point it is up to him... he either accepts the help on offer FROM THE SOCIAL WORK DEPARTMENT.. or gets on with it himself... or lies in his own mess or whatever.
Your family are not being unreasonable.. they have busy lives.
You have to be strong for you.. stand up for yourself.
Get back in touch with the social worker and have them organise carers for him.. he can like it or lump it.

pascal30 Sat 13-May-23 11:37:43


^They both have young families but when I said that tho the social worker he said : so what ? We all have families^

The social worker is not doing the caring of your DH himself on top of his job and looking after a young family. That remark was totally out of order.

I agree that this suggestion was unhelpful from the Social worker and probably reflects the pressure they are under as well. I can understand how your son must have been freaked out at the requested extra help.. but accept that for what it was. No adult children with jobs and their own families will have the time or energy for these extra duties, I'd be very grateful that Social Services are willing to put a care package together and accept like a shot.. Husband sounds very uncompromising and really needs to think of your needs first..

Witzend Sat 13-May-23 11:38:08

I can understand anyone not really wanting strangers to do any caring, but at the same time IMO it’s very selfish to expect adult children with children of their own, and probably working, too, to take on anything but very short-term care.

I think your husband needs some straight talk, OP. And if he doesn’t like it, tough.

Is the social worker suggesting family help because it means less involvement for her, and possibly expense for the council, if the care is not going to be self funded? (I’m not assuming that it will or won’t be, BTW.)

silverlining48 Sat 13-May-23 11:39:09

I think that if we helped parents and in laws when they couldn’t manage ( and I did) we might have assumed ours would offer their help in turn.
Some might but they would probably be in the minority.
It comes as a shock and I am
Preparing myself to be as independent as possible.

HeavenLeigh Sat 13-May-23 11:40:05

Totally agree with Fleur

Borrheid55 Sat 13-May-23 11:46:24

First of all, it’s early days. You are all coming to terms with the disability. It’s frightening, unsettling and disruptive. The social worker probably meant well but was clumsy in expressing it. Your adult children are probably cautious and anxious about what they are being asked to contribute. ‘Care’ can be a light touch or 24/7 interventions. Ask your DH what he would like to have help doing. What would you appreciate help with? Actual physical needs or support emotionally?
Start with small requests. Your adult children might feel that they will be overwhelmed with responsibilities, when actually it might be much less. Good luck with it all.
My family has been involved in my (91 year old) mother’s care in the last year after she dislocated her shoulder in a fall. She lives alone and is fiercely independent but acknowledges that she needs some help. She now has carers in the morning for about 20 minutes and the family do everything else. It helps that there are a lot of extended family members. My brother does the weekly shop, my sister in law looks after medical stuff ( she’s an ex-nurse), my aunt -her sister - visits regularly for a gossip, one niece brings the papers and others phone for some company. She uses an iPad ( since Covid!) to stay in touch with those of us too far away. Care packages come in all shapes and sizes.

silverlining48 Sat 13-May-23 11:46:40

As for the SW/care manager, she may have just asked about other family help in passing. I may have done the same when assessing older people.
A care package isn’t perfect but it will help reduce the workload of the partner who has to take care of their own health .

Caleo Sat 13-May-23 11:47:31

NotJustA----, I sympathise with your dejection at your children's manner of responding to you. Their bad manners are their weakness not yours. They are defending themselves and have not at the time of your writing understood this is a practical matter that includes supporting you emotionally.

You need to leave the friendship door ajar for them to make amends when they learn better how to speak to you as a worried mother who needs advice . The more you appear reasonable and unemotional the sooner they will come back to you. They have not understood how difficult it is for you to make the decision

You need the care package so go for it.

Things will then improve with your children, and you can say that you understand how they felt.

Georgesgran Sat 13-May-23 11:53:23

Lost my post!

Request the SW to come back to reassess, explain the situation and don’t back down.
I’m sure your AC are willing to help out here and there, but can’t commit to a regular regime of care, especially if personal care is required.
Perhaps look at certain aids and adaptations to make life easier - some can be loaned from the Local Authority, bought or even rented (stairlift) from private companies.

I hope your DH is in receipt of AA and you should qualify for Carer’s Allowance - to pay for things you can’t do, to make life easier.

Plus, if your DH dislikes a particular individual, you could always request someone else from the Agency, or change Agencies.

Shelflife Sat 13-May-23 11:53:31

Seems inappropriate to me that the SW suggested your children should h

Luckygirl3 Sat 13-May-23 11:54:25

The social worker was out of order and totally unprofessional - you should make a complaint about him. I can understand the SW asking if there are local family who might be able to help as your OH will not accept other carers; but to say that you "should" speak with them is out of order.

I am sorry this has caused a family rift.

Shelflife Sat 13-May-23 11:55:57

elp out . Of course they should be there to support you and do a little to ease the burden for you. Your husband needs to realize that he MUST accept help. If he refuse you may have to override his wishes .

TerryM Sat 13-May-23 11:59:20

Husband has an expectation significant loss of mobility over the next ten years. We have zero thoughts of getting son and his family to assist.
Husband and I had loads of caring for my parents. Random hospital calls at 10 pm , 2 am etc when dad was admitted and mum was deemed not safe to be left alone.
We will over time ensure we have non family support to assist
We don't ever want to become a chore to our son and his family

25Avalon Sat 13-May-23 11:59:55

You have to be firm with social workers when the care package is worked out. Tell them exactly what you and your family are prepared to do and stick to it. If they can get you to do more they well. I expect your ac’s would be happy to help with the odd thing occasionally but not on a permanent basis. It is not fair to expect them to do more. Please try to be more understanding of your ds but he should not have shouted at you. Sounds like it was just too much for him and he stressed out. He may have problems with work and/or family which you don’t know about and he couldn’t take any more pressure but felt guilty that he couldn’t help as you wanted.

Franbern Sat 13-May-23 12:05:38

It is not the reason we had children, for us to become our Carers. Most people with families are already over-stretched with time, trying to work and look after their families.

Your husband needs to be told, plainly, that as he cannot cope with many things himself, he needs to have professional caring assistance for that assistance.

I do not understand anybody who would wish to have a child (of any age) to wipe their bottoms, change their clothes, clear up their messes. Interestingly, that if someone was put on a ward, etc where there is a family member working, then that family member would have to move off that ward.

When my husband became very disabled with MS our children were not yet adults and I worked so hard to prevent them having to take on any Caring responsibility. How could they have any sort of relationship with someone if they were having to pick him up off the bathroom floor with his pants around his ankles.

His bitterness at his illness and his demands caused a serious illness in me, which he totally ignored and brought about the death of our relationship.

On our 25th wedding anniversary he actually left and took himself to the local respite hospital. I applied for a divorce. Social Services had several fits as they did not have any suitable housing to be able to put him in and had alegal obligation so to do. So, they leaned heavily on me to have back home, promising me so much in the way of adaptations and support. I was ill, exhausted, worried and alone - I gave in and thereby giving several more years of horrible problems.

When he did finally leave, he did so with the house in a dreadful state of repair and no money - informing me that I should take in a lodger to help to pay the way for myself and the children.

I survived (amazingly), but look back on those years with total horror. The children, now all quite mature adults have no real relationship with him. Visit once of twice a year out of a sense of duty.

Please make it up with your son. He must have been totally shocked at the suggestion, no wonder he shouted. His first duty is towards his own family. Sure he is just as sorrow at his loss of temper, but at least he gave you honest replies. Contact him and re-forge this important relationship.

Surprised Social Worker even stated that. Need professional caring package both for your husband's and you sake.