Fking streesssssedddd

This is actually pretty serious and I'm in need of some advice.

So, for starters my aunt and cousin are both bed ridden and ill. It's a hereditary auto-immune disease. However, my aunt is much sicker than her daughter and manages to stay alone only asking for help when needed. My cousin on the other hand is the mother of two small children and her husband is in construction so of course he works long hours and a lot of days sometimes needing to go out of town. Obviously she can't take care of her kids so a babysitter is needed. Usually this is where her in-laws step in, or also a woman she's hired to help. Every once in a while she'll ask me or my mother to help, which is fine. Now, here's where things get messy.. My 86 year old grandmother is also in the picture. My cousin utilizes her as a 'babysitter' for herself pretty much every day of the week that her husband isn't around. Sometimes even while there's a babysitter in the same house with her kids. This irks me to no end solely because I feel as though it's not necessary and to be blunt it's f***** up to make my grandmother take care of her, when it should be the other way around. Someone needs to take care of my grandma! My mother and I both live kind of tight financial wise and we both work long days and weird hours that could change from week to week. One missed day of work could potentially f*** us over for the month.

SO, we have family up in Missouri and my grandma basically never gets to see her other kids because of my cousin constantly demanding care for herself. I know she's sick but I find it odd how whenever my grandma attempts to see her other kids in Missouri my cousin is mysteriously ten times sicker than normal. This is what's currently happening.. I got a phone call from my grandma after I got home from work tonight so that'd be around 11pm or so. She basically said that if my mother or I can't work something out to go over there and babysit my adult cousin, that she would have to end her trip and come home. She's supposed to stay until AFTER Christmas and she's only been there for a week or less. My cousin apparently calls her multiple times a day while she's gone and complains she's soooooo sick and needs help even going as far as telling her she wants to die or kill herself. Can you imagine the stress my elderly grandma is overcome with when she hears these sorts of things? It p***** me off to no end that my grandma can't live the last years of her life in relaxation and enjoying her time doing things SHE would like to do SUCH AS visiting her other children.

Also, I've 'babysat' my adult cousin on several occasions and basically she just wants drinks/medicine and someone to just SIT around until she feels it's okay for you to go home. But when it's my grandma she has her do other things such as wash her hair, and sometimes even BABYSIT her kids. Good lord, who would want someone who can't see or hear well to watch a baby and a toddler?!

This is how I feel about the entire situation from my point of view.. My aunt is ten times sicker than she is and she manages to STAY ALONE, feed herself, bathe herself, entertain herself, etc... So, why is it that my cousin can't do that? From experience my cousin has always sort of been overly dramatic even way before she was ill, everything was a stress or a worry for her when it didn't NEED to be. I know she's sick, but I think she worries herself SO much that she'll be sicker when she's alone that she literally implants it in her brain that it will happen, so it does. To her it does.

Now lastly I'm going to say both her and her mother don't take blunt honesty too well.. At all. As in they basically won't hear you out, so trying to explain these feelings to them would fall upon deaf ears. What the f*** do I do?! They're begging me to take my grandmas place while she's out of town for the next few months but I simply cannot just take off work whenever, or call out for her needs. I've helped plenty of times, and I love my family but this is ridiculous. She's a grown woman who happens to be ill.. I'm sorry she has to live that way and I wish it wasn't like that but she needs to realize she's just limiting my grandmother's days on earth even more when she stresses her out like this. GOD.


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  • You're being really very realistic about the situation. It sounds sad and frustrating. Your grandmother and the children on the other side need to speak up. That's what's not going on here. Everyone is catering to this one cousin and it's totally unfair to your grandma. Your cousin is being very selfish. It's sad that she's sick, but your grandmother isn't going away for a year. Your cousin is going to have to learn to deal on her own for a bit. Her husband and her kids will have to pitch in more. Maybe you and your mom can find some time in your schedule to call or stop by to check in. Maybe neighbors can help out.. Have you looked into any resources in your area that can help out, maybe through her doctor's office or hospital? Hire nurses/aides to help out? Lots of qualified health care workers are out of work and may be very qualified to stop by for a couple of hours when she needs them the most - check out and post an ad. Your grandmother needs to make and confirm travel arrangements and go see her family and just tell this cousin that she's going and she'll be back. Don't give the cousin an opportunity to make the grandma feel guilty..which she should feel in the first place.

  • I really do appreciate the response as this has been a huge stress in my life for a long time now. I've spoken up several times and the last time it ended with them not speaking to me for three or four months because they simply don't understand what my cousin is doing is wrong. (By 'them' I mean my cousin and my Aunt) Also, her kids in Missouri have spoken up as well and my Grandma believes that my cousin is truly too ill to be alone. She practically has my grandmother brainwashed at this point and it's extremely frustrating. My cousin was actually recently approved for disability, and her husband works and makes decent money so I'm really not sure why they haven't invested in someone more capable and qualified to stay with my cousin. But I'll be honest, my cousin doesn't NEED someone there to babysit her, this is something she's going to have to cope with as her mother has done. I don't mind helping out once in a while and she knows that but doesn't care. Without sounding too 'mean' she's a bit of a drama queen and I think some of the sickness may be in her head. Some days I see her online playing video games and then the next day if my grandma wants to stay at home, she's suddenly too ill to lift her head. It boggles my mind! Something definitely HAS to change though.

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