Ask Amy: Caregiving duties create sibling resentment
He has a lot of responsibilities at home with our children, in addition to a much more demanding work schedule than Jackie’s.
It’s also a lot easier for Jackie to step in since she lives there.
I think it’s hard for her to understand the demands of small children.
She has become resentful, and unfortunately, their mother’s health isn’t likely to significantly improve.
I’m trying but struggling to see Jackie’s perspective.
Dear M: “Jackie” doesn’t understand the pressure of having two toddlers at home, and you likely don’t understand the challenges of cohabiting and providing care for an elderly and chronically ill parent.
I’m not sure it is for you to decide what is “easier” for Jackie because she is living in the household. You should assume that she provides a lot of daily care that you don’t know about. You should also imagine what the situation would be like if Jackie became overwhelmed and decided to decamp.
One solution would be for your husband to hire a caregiver to help his mother one morning a week and on Saturdays.
This would give Jackie a break from the household, and would relieve both siblings from running errands and doing household chores so that they could spend more of their time with their mother in less of a caretaking role.