View Full Version : Can't get my father to understand

08-14-11, 12:12 AM
A quick background on the situation, I am currently 31 years old, about 5 years ago my father's diabetes got the best of him, mostly due to not taking care of himself, so I had him move in with me, he went downhill from there and so still lives with me, although he does pay part of the bills with his disability income.

My father is now 57 and is to the point that he hardly leaves his room except to grab food and never leaves the house except to go to dr appts. He does absolutely no housework and handles none of the bills, and refuses to discuss them with me.

About 3 years ago, my epilepsy came back really bad, resulting in my losing my license. Along with this, trying to handle my illness along with taking care of my father and working full time overwhelmed me. I was also just recently diagnosed with ADHD combination type and am also working a part time job as I got fired from my previous job.

He is also the type that I do not even like to speak to him about anything anymore as when I need to approach him about the bills he gets mad, if I try to talk to him and he is watching tv or on the internet he tells me to shutup and he's busy. He expects me to hear him talk to me when I am in my bedroom clear across the house and he trys to yell a conversation rather than coming and talking to me.

Anyways, I have a bad tendency to forget things when I run errands for him as he refuses to make a list most of the time or he will forget something and say he told me before i left. He also expects me to be there at his beckon call and gets mad if I won't immediately go somewhere for him such as if he wants something from the store, even in 110 degree weather and I have to walk everywhere.

Before starting medication everything went way downhill, I dropped out of college due to failing multiple classes, am maxed out on student loans and all of the household bills are late.

Things have been starting to improve a little as far as me getting my finances straightened out, but am beginning to think that he may be to much for me to handle, even with the medication as my seizures aren't completely under control either.

I have tried to explain what adhd is and he refuses to let me explain it and doesn't seem to care that it may be part of my troubles. Sorry to be so long winded, however I tried to be as short as I could on it. Has anybody else experienced these kind of issues with their family?

08-14-11, 02:15 AM
Does he receive any income? If your late on bills and he does then there should be help there.

Far as him not discussing bills, witj my mother I made it not an option. Huff and puff all you want this is reality and we are going over them. We either do, or help me pack because we will both be on the street.

Not wanting to make a list..again no option, I would grab a pen and paper and write as he dictates. No list, you don't go. Respect is a two way street. If you must do things for him that doesn't mean your to be stressed like that.

We need stress at a minimum, we need routine....take care of you, do things as you need to in a way that keeps you grounded. I took care of my mom quite sometime. It was hard at first, it got better ..:-)

Sorry not much help..

Do you have any part in helping manage his diabetes? If you do, then only fair he listen to you explain your adhd ..

08-14-11, 11:47 AM
it sounds like he's immature and he just wants his way. you can't reason or explain anything to someone that is stuck like that.

if he wants you to run errands, then he needs to meet you half way and give you a list. If it isn't on the list, he's SOL.

he's going to b***h, ****, moan, and gripe. acknowledge that you'd be disappointed to not have something you want.... leave it at that. next time it's time to run errands, ask him for a list.

you're probably going to have to go through this scenario a few times, but he'll get it. keep in mind when he fusses, it's isn't about you. he might try to say it is, but the truth is, he's just spoiled! it's no fun to not get your way.

adult relationships are a two way street. you can't be the one doing all the giving, you'll run out of steam.

08-14-11, 01:19 PM

I can't say very much on you and your father. I can give you a concept that may be of some use. It called setting limits, saying what your limits are, what you will put with, what you will not. You are not trying to get another to do but are very clear and definite on what you will do. What we are doing is setting clear boundaries.

I take care of my 89 year old father father (I moved onto the same property to do this). We get along pretty well but I have to set strict limits otherwise we won't. He wants to tell me how I will do the tasks he wants done. He used to own a manufacturing business and tends to work people as if they were employees. Nicely, you understand, but still wanting things done his way.

I set a firm rule, if he wants it done his way, he will have to do it or arrange to get it done. If I am going to do it, I will do it my way. As long as the job gets done or the problem gets solved, that is all that counts. He can make suggestions but has no say-so on how I will do it.

As an example, he often, at first, would want me to call someone and get them to do something. He would give detailed instructions on how he wanted me to do it and then insist that I do it that way. I simply told him if I was going to do it, I would do it my way and he wanted it done his way, he could do it and handed him the phone. I informed him that I was his son, not his employee.

If he wants something at the store, he has to help me make a list. If it is not on the list, I don't have to buy it. The trick is to make him responsible for his decisions not me. I put the responsibility back on him where it belongs.

We have had some interesting clash of wills on this after I moved here and he is finally accepting how I will do things and it is working out really quite well.

Except for trying to treat me as an employee (which doesn't work) we get along well but I don't dare pull back from firm limits because, like a kid, he will start testing me again to see what I will do . When he starts this testing, I will pass.

If he starts, gets too insistent, I simply tell him I will see him tomorrow and leave. (This must be modified to the situation but but there is no reason to have to listen to any kind of anger or verbal abuse.)

Another limit that I find helpful: His house, his rules; My house, my rules. This may not apply at all times but does give a framework to modify to fit the situation..

What makes this work is that you are not telling him what to or not to do but You are stating clearly and firmly what you will and will not do.

If he wants to make the decisions, he must the take the responsibility. The same as kids, people want to make others responsible for their decisions. That is a no go.

One things one often seen in older people is depression. For some, depression can come out as irritability and not so much sadness. You also see this often with adolescents.

Again, I cannot comment on you and your father very much but this may give you a few ideas. Use or not as you wish.

Good luck,


08-14-11, 01:57 PM
Thank you Diz, you said it so much prettier than me! :)

08-14-11, 03:56 PM
You have a good point, Diz. I actually have been starting to make him make a list. An example is Friday I told him to figure out what groceries he wanted from the store and write them down. It was much easier as I then made them into my own list as he doesn't know how to organize a grocery list.

I have started to stand my ground today, not by yelling back at him, but when he throws his fits and starts yelling, I just ask him what he is accomplishing by yelling. Funny thing was when I did that all he could say was shutup and then he clammed up.

I think he probably is depressed, but he has also been spoiled his whole life, always having someone handle everything for him. He actually got mad at me today when I was trying to organize all of the bills and shredding all of the old ones. He insisted he wanted to keep them to know who he called until I said there was no point in hoarding the bills when we can get copies if needed.

I just think I may be trying to take on too much sometimes and getting overwhelmed. Slowly but surely I hope to get there though.

08-16-11, 02:48 PM
im sorry to say it but your dad is treating you like ****!!! stand up for your self you have very real medical needs and he just wont listen sure he has his own but those are his tell hm strate up
if your going to live with me you will help where you can and you will respect my difcultys if you want me to help you you have to at least try to help me if not theres the door
even if hes your dad h is still free loading you dont have to hit him but your feelings needfight for what you think is right for you your dad can find soe one else to help him if not

08-20-11, 02:05 AM
Good point Kitty92, and I have really been working to make him understand that, and if he doesn't then just to deal with it. Rather than listen to his fits, I just leave his room and go back to what I was doing.

He was trying to get me to go back to the grocery store again on thursday, which I have been trying to do fridays. This time when I had a moment to stop there I told him I could grab just a couple things and the rest needed to be put in a list for me to do saturday morning.

Amazingly he tolerated it, guess he'll realize.