Every decision I make for my parents is met with hatred or dissatisfaction...


Every decision I do to help my parents is met with seething hatred from my mom and dissatisfaction from my dad. My mom has threatened to have me arrested. My dad told me he was going crazy in an assisted living. My mom has hated all her nursing homes (3 in the past year) and literally fights her way out of them or flat out escapes. She hates how I restrict her access to a phone, computer, and money. She would spend all her money if she could. She calls everyone on her contacts list begging to be let out and to get booze. She hates how I don't let her have booze, and she has snuck it in to her NH.

I let my parents do whatever they wanted after I gave up one time, and they ended up in an apartment they couldn't afford without home health - my mom can't even walk. By the time social services got involved, she hadn't had a bath in weeks. My dad was too drunk to function and was too sick because of it. My mom was starving and not taking her meds, as was my dad. I got her back into a nursing home with the help of a local advocacy agency, and my mom was so grateful all of a sudden. She had a clean pee-free bed, food, a bath, etc. My dad got into an Alzheimer/Dementia unit that was locked so he couldn't go out and find booze, and it was very nice in there. He socialized with people with similar brain issues. I got them all happy just in time for me to study abroad.

The FIRST WEEK I was abroad, my mom was screaming and kicking people, running over residents in her scooter, threatening to call police and report elder abuse, drinking when friends took her out to lunch. She's technically under eviction from her current nursing home, but she has nowhere to go so they can't evict her on the street. My dad was being so good in his unit so he went to an townhouse. But, he started drinking again even though he was ashamed of it and then complains that he is so alone. If I had it my way, my mom would be in a nursing home happy and content, and my dad in an independent living apartment with minimal care but still a semi-controlled environment where he could come and go as he pleased and socialize with people. My mom drives everyone crazy including my dad, but my dad takes his marriage vows to the ultimate extreme and refuses to ignore my mom when he needs to the most. They want to be together, but it. is. just. not. an. option.

My parents can't seem to let go of their ideal life. They both need to be checked into a rehab center to get meds sorted and to get drinking controlled, but there's no money. They both need to just accept the life that drinking created for them. I'm at my wits end. If I let them on their own, I fully 100% expect them to be dead by next Christmas - that is how destructive their behaviors are. They are 100% not capable of complete independence, and they will never be again, but they are the least compliant people.

A part of me really wants to just disappear, change my phone number, move to a different state, and continue with my life. My parents potentially have a decade or more left in them, and the thought of this cycle repeating for another 10 years makes me want to jump off the nearest bridge. Not one single thing anyone has done has helped permanently in the past year. No progress has been made. At what point do you just leave them to their own devices and the mercy of social services? At what point is that ethical? Do I just contact an elder law attorney to verify that I've done everything I legally can do as their child, and then vanish? I feel like I am staring into an abyss, my anxiety is through the roof, and I feel depression creeping up on me like the devil.

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Just want to let you know you are not alone. FIL hates us now- everything is our fault. They are stuck in there- NH because of us. We stole their car, caused them to loose their home etc. the truth is the exact opposite. We gave worked our behinds off for them fixing the mess they left in their tracts. My conclusion is a life lived for self and partying ends in sorrow. Sorry you have to endure this - it sucks.

Sometimes you have to step out of a situation to get folks the care they need, dear.

It's an unenviable situation that you're in, and not at all of your making. Don't let anyone guilt you into trying this again; they need the State to step in if they are beyond the capacity of a professional agency.

The advocacy program is not renewing guardianship of my mom because she is too much for them. I feel like they will have to hand my mom over to the state. They will continue checking in on my dad I think. I'm just at the point where I will wait for another phone call saying they were both admitted to hospital for drinking but I will have to tell the hospital that I refuse to help and let the social workers deal with them. I love my parents, but I also love myself and the life they worked hard to create for me despite their drinking.

I would not try to gain guardianship of your parents. They are mentally ill and require professionals making decisions on their behalf. Cede guardianship to the advocacy organization, or to the state. You can't change their behavior.

At what point? I'm sorry, but I think you've already passed that point. You've tried your best, especially to address the addictive behavior, but they continue to resist and fight you. From what I've read, I don't know what else you could do because the responses and behavior would apparently be the same.

And in the meantime, your life is literally going downhill.

Have you thought about ceding custody to the state and let it handle their care? You might also think about contacting APS and share their situation, advising that you can no longer take care of them and they need intervention.

The apparently long term addiction to alcohol isn't going to change w/o rehab, and even then, they could revert post rehab. It sounds like there might be some alcohol related dementia involved as well.

I'm sorry, but I think you've done all you can. It wouldn't hurt to consult an elder law attorney to determine if there are any other options, and to reassure you that you've given the situation your best shot but can't find solutions with which your parents will cooperate.

Something else I wonder is that, given that the negative behavior is only dragging them down, and w/o rehab and commitment to it, their lives are only going to be the same thing over and over. Do you think that they've developed attitudes of not caring what happens to them?

You may want to check out Guardianship Services, sometimes called "Custody" services or "Guardian" services in your city and state.
I live in Washington state and we use their financial services to take care of our dads finances and pay his bills.
My uncle lived in California and was not making good decisions for himself. He was around people who were stealing from him, he had no clean safe place to stay, and we found him in a hospital. His employer called when he didn't show up for work for 3 days.
We had a guardian assigned to him from the county. The guardian lived with him and made sure he was safe and getting to his doctor appointments and had groceries. The service also took care of his financial affairs.
Guardianship services takes over ALL the decisions for the elderly person. They keep the family informed but they do exactly what they have to do to make sure the person is cared for properly.
In your case, your parents would not be getting alcohol, and your mom might be put in an assisted living or rehab place where she could not hurt herself or others.
This is no way for you to live. You might think about getting some counseling yourself. No one has to remain in an abusive situation. If you grew up with this then you learned to make excuses and just do what has to be done for them. But that could be enabling them.. especially your mom. For everyone's sake it's time for the enabling and abuse to stop.
Hope that helps.. I went through similar things myself.
Blessings to you,

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