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flameboi's avatar

My dad gave up, can I do something?

Asked by flameboi (7519points) August 21st, 2008

After his factory went to hell 10 years ago, he just gave up and lost his ambition of a better life, they (my parents) had a discussion last night and now, I’m just bitter about it, is frustrating and I nothing comes to my mind, what can I do? What am I supposed to do, I mean, I’m not gonna be there forever to take care of them, I’m in despair, it breaks my heart to see my mom sad about it…

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15 Answers

Snoopy's avatar

It isn’t your responsibility to make sure that your parents are happy… is theirs. It is admirable however.

is it possible that your dad is clinically depressed? i.e needs therapy and/or medication? Encourage him to discuss w/ his primary care doctor….

flameboi's avatar

Thank you snoopy, I don’t think he is depressed (I know how is that, trust me), he is just, I don’t even know how to call it, but I’ll keep in mind your suggestion :)

JackAdams's avatar

I agree totally with Snoopy, even though I don’t know your Dad at all.

revatman's avatar

how old are you? are you still living with them? are you working a job and contributing to the household? if you’re not of the age of having moved out yet, then you HAVE to figure out how to live your own life.

how old are they? is he anywhere near retirement age?

speaking as someone who had a father lose his job dragging me down financially, you have to be there as a son, but don’t let them suck you into things that are gonna weigh you down.

other than that, I’m not sure what to tell you. your parents raised you and supported you while you were young, and you do have a little bit of an obligation for that, but that doesn’t mean bringing your own life to a screeching halt and jamming yourself up financially.

scamp's avatar

If you think your Dad is depressed and feeling worthless, you could do things to make him feel valued by you. Ask his advice on something. You’d be surprised how it would help to perk him up. Say something like, “Dad, can I ask your advice on something? Your opinion is really important to me.” Now that you are grown and in college he may feel that you don’t value his opinion as much as you did when you were much younger. So stroke his ego a little. It will make both of you feel better.

It’s very good that you care so much about them, and want to help. Just be careful you don’t martyr yourself on their account. Offer whatever help you can give without draining yourself both personally and financially. Talk to your Mom about them getting some counselling if you think they need it, and let her bring it up with your Dad. If you bring it up, it might embarrass him and send him further into depression.

I wish you all the best. They are lucky to have you.

mzgator's avatar

Depression will make a person lose intrest in everything they loved. Family… Friends..even food isn’t as good as before. There are awesome medications available which can save a persons life or better their quality of life. I hope your Dad can get out of this funk and be happy again really soon.

I admire you for being such a caring and loving son to your parents.

charliecompany34's avatar

try thinking about what motivates your dad. think about what he enjoys doing that is constructive. tap into that boyhood endeavor that he always remembers. is it fishing? is it gardening? cooking? collecting? hunting? model airplanes? welding? whatever it is, have him re-visit a passion and try to update it to what the world needs and enjoys today. his vocation and livelihood of the past can be his gratifying career of the future.

marinelife's avatar

Tell your dad that he is needed.

JackAdams's avatar

And that he is LOVED.

ebenezer's avatar

I would say give a good effort. If it doesn’t work and he is non- resposive, get out of the situation. My ex girlfriend had a similiar situation (although depression and alcoholism were involved) and her mother ended up passing away. I think you have to do as much as you can for your own sake, but if that doesn’t work you should distance yourself from it with the feeling that you did what you could. You cannot be a caregiver for your family members if they are unwilling to work with your or get outside help.

cak's avatar

I’m so sorry you are going through this and that your dad is, too. I know you may not think he’s depressed, but it sure sounds like some hallmark signs of depression. Supporting him and encouraging him is what you can do – by support I mean moral support!

However, if he is depressed (clinically) he will need medical care. You can’t fix this for him, no matter how hard you try, but it’s wonderful to know that you care so much.

Best of luck to you and your family.

wundayatta's avatar

I think support is a great idea. I wanted to alert you to a possible reaction to support. If he is depressed, he might feel so guilty and unfatherly about his teenage (?) son supporting him that he lashes out to try to drive you away. If this happens, while it may be very difficult, I would still try to be supportive, perhaps in a subtler way.

I’m depressed, and if my kids tried to do that, I would get so angry. I would try really hard not to take it out on them. One thing I did was to just walk out of the house for hours, when I realized I was so close to doing something stupid, that would hurt my kids. But my kids are younger, so my guilt would be greater, I guess.

scamp's avatar

@ebenezer I don’t think he can simply give up on his Dad. Depression is a long, hard battle, and taking the first steps towards getting better is sometimes the hardest part for some people. It takes alot of love, understanding and patience from family members and close friends. It’s a sticky situation. To walk away at the wrong time could send his Dad further into depression.

@flameboi I think the best thing for you is to set boundaries as far as how much you can do, and don’t feel guilty that you aren’t doing enough. Your efforts will not go unnoticed. Hang in there, you’re doing all the right things.

ninjaxmarc's avatar

my dad lost his job three years ago. He decided to get knee surgery done to both knees while he was not working. It never healed right. He’s been looking for a job the past 6 month. Anything also with no luck.

He’s been sorta depressed but he’s been keeping busy with house projects, helping my grandparents out and other parts of our family. The only thing is dislike is his drinking. He doesn’t get all emo or a bad drunk but he drinks. Constantly.

My family always tell him we love him, he’s wanted, things will look up, look at the brighter side, your health is better, we have a roof over our heads, etc.

Knotmyday's avatar

Take him fishing, and talk about anything but. Give him time.

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