Ever since my mother's stroke I have advised my father with all I know on nutrition, even though he isn't approachable I still share. I am aware how parents don't take their children advice as an automatic reaction for knowing you were once a helpless baby in their arms so now saying you know something they don't is rather a blow to such parental pride....I totally get that kind of situation.
AND I will STILL try to help out when asked, I will step back at the same time to not be so preachy as in those first few months following my mother's recovery.
Calling my mother once a week to ask how her diet and how is her eating the right foods is all going, hoping that my excitement in going swimming with her as she looses weight to be in shape for the water will motivate her. Her response is always the same "I try to eat like you but it's not easy, there are no cooked meat snacks like opening a bag of chips, and actually it takes to long to cook the meat in order to eat when I am hungry." I then try to come up with simple easy fast steps for her, Last night I finally drew my big chart for her and am so very very excited to give it to her today!
In my last email to my father I spoke to him in simple bluntness and never heard back, I basically said Mom can't loose weight until he buys the right things for her to eat, saying no to all her fast sugar snacks is hard but worth her having better health in the long run.
Again this nutrition info should come from a male, a stranger to the family like a male Doctor maybe then my father would follow this new advice to the letter of the law but since I am his daughter, there is no real grasp to listen, to even be bothered with me. I totally get this kind of situation as well, I grew up in it, so knowing how it works leaves me with the tip of my hat to my father in all due respect he is going to simply be left alone, change for my mother in her loosing weight has never been up to me and maybe one day he will see this chart I made and be inspired to try it out?
I don't want a pat on my back, I will never get respect from my father no matter how I change my approach to visiting with him, I don't go out to see my mother because he asked and I know who he is from the inside out, I see the love and fear in his eyes all the time, he is very confused to which emotion will win in that battle wrestling inside of him. When he says very mean hurtful things like in the last time I was just out there I know why, I leave my father on his own to figure out what I have always seen him since I was born, I can't help or reach him anymore.....
Yet I am going to help my mom for what I can and everything else I leave to my tears falling, to my deeper understanding in how healing will give me such strength of my soul once again.
My father arrived home acting very aggressive while I was teaching my Aunt how to help Mom in the shower. Mom asked to have her legs shaved for no one does as good a job as I do, It's because I squat down beside her chair with a water fall of soapy water and careful move her paralyzed leg around, I get soaked from head to toe but her legs feel smoother once again. When I leave my mother to soak in the warmth of the water she is all clean, I sit in her wheel chair so I can talk to her for I am in no hurry, I love to know she is enjoying herself. Getting dress in a dry place is very important to me while supporting her balance and getting dried off. My father was watching from the other room as I grabbed mom's clothes heading back to join her and her sister when he smarted off "That's NOT what I do when I give her a shower..." before I could respond or explain myself he turned his back on me like I was the biggest idiot he had ever seen, an action I saw from him all of my life, especailly when he caused any confrontation with me. I didn't blink by surprise over it, I simply moved forward so he would be facing me directly as I spoke in good details of what I was doing and why, his surprise eye brows went up in how I followed him to finish our little chat, (sometime he reminds me of a 5 year old boy trying to figure out what to do or say next) So when I spun back around to go back to my mother. I caught his frowning face as he mimicked or mocked me. That is such a common face of his I have seen also. Now my Aunt's son saw all of this encounter and asked me later on in his car driving back home "He was extremely disrespectful towards you, why do you even bother going all the way out there so much?"
I sat looking out his car window feeling helpless once again, "I go out there mostly for my brothers, but in also helping my mom I know my dad will kinda relax....I go out there now.... because one day I will never go out there again."