I'm about to graduate high school and I'm terrified to leave my emotionally abusive father and handicapped mother alone. Please help!


I'm eighteen years old, so I know I'm a legal adult. But at the same time, most counterparts my age have never had to wipe their mother's behind because she went to the bathroom on herself while they were at school, or pick her up off the floor at 2am the night before the SAT.
Over the last four years or so I've seen her health, wellbeing, and spirit shrivel away. She is 64 years old. All my life she's struggled with A LOT of health issues including diabetes and an array of depression problems. In recent years, it has become much more severe. She had several months where she was in so much pain she had to go to the hospital regularly, but neither there nor at her doctors' has anyone ever really "solved the mystery". After that, she just declined. Now, she is immobile(I would say that she is in a wheelchair but she doesnt get in that wheelchair, she stays in one spot in our living room and rarely moves because she can no longer do so with any sort of ease), in pain, depressed, constipated regularly, and always cold. We can't take her out to anywhere because she is always too cold. Plus, being in public makes her ansy and she gets mean and whines and doesnt enjoy herself at all.
So, she stays in our livingroom 24/7. She is immobile. She is unhappy and feels trapped and heartbroken. YET WE HAVE NO OBE AT ALL TO HELP TAKE CARE OF HER OR US. I go to school while my dad is home, my dad goes to work when I get off of school. We schedule our lives around the idea that she cant bealone because she needs constant care. This would be fine, except that the care she is getting fron us is not and has never been adequate. She doesnt take all of her pills regularly. She doesnt eat enough. She doesnt go to all of her doctors appointments. She is CONSTANTLY wincing because of either physical or emotional pain. We have no groceries. Our house is soo filthy. She rarely bathes. Her drivers lisence is two years due for renewal. The list goes on and on. And it's so WRONG. It's wrong and it's heartbreaking.
And in addition to all of that, my father is MEAN. He yells and critisizes everything she does. Physical abuse I know has been a part of it. So much happens when I'm not around. Sometimes my mom fabricates things and sometimes she is honest, I cant tell. For years, even before she was sick, my mom complained of abuse and felt trapped. She just never had anyone to help her leave and she didnt know how to do it on her own. Now, she cant. There are many reasons, or excuses, as to why I havent reported or done anything. Firstly, is my own fear and youth. I don't want to break up my home by calling cps or aps. I don't want to have to handle this and accept that my dad isnt going to. I'm young. I don't know what to do. A twelve year old doesnt know how to handle abuse complaints from their wheelchair-bound mother. The next reason is that my dad isn't a "bad man". My dad is just overwhelmed. He has never been able to accept help, but we need it now. He can't get anything done. I can't get anything done. There is so much pain weighing down on my house that I think we've given up. We're trying to function normally, but we can't just make small adjustments in our lives and pretend like it's working. It isn't!
I've approached my dad, but we both end up yelling and brushing it off. Which leads me to my third, and what my dad claims to be the most important, reason: My mom smokes weed, she has since she had cancer when I was verrry young. It eases her pain. Times when she doesnt have it, she'll fully face the actual situation she's in and it is miserable for her and for us. I wish we could have some type of outside, trained assistance without that being an issue, but we can't. Don't judge my family. My parents and sweet, fun, loving people. Life has just beat them up, and they've given up trying to stop it. I've approached some family.. My sister is in her freshman year of college so she knows everything I'm going through. I guess we've just been raised so that we feel like doing something isn't worth it? I dont know, but I can't take it much longer. I cry every single day thinking of the pain my parents go through and how they numb themselves to pretend it's not their. My dilema is that I don't know if I should say that their decisions are theirs and when I go to college they will handle it how they choose to. Or if I should tell a councilor and get adult cps involved. Or if I should go to college locally and stay home to continue emotionally supporting my mother. I don't know what to do. Please, please give me any advice you have. I need an objective view of what's going on.

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Nothing changes unless we change it. There is a saying that 'IF IT IS TO BE - IT IS UP TO ME.'

You deserve to have a life. Your parents did. As much as we love our parents. we don't owe them OUR life - we owe them love, respect and kindness - but we don't owe them OUR LIFE.

Adults should be able to figure something out for themselves and it is very possible they need the help of Social Services to to that. Save yourself - leave home - and do what you can to help your parents become responsible for their own decisions by leaving them to make those decisions.

If you feel there is abuse - then definitely contact authorities. They will do the rest. I am sorry your life has been so difficult. Life isn't fair. Happiness comes in 'small snatches of time' and we need to appreciate those small gifts. Go to school and become a good person - never stop caring - but get help so that you have some perspective that is impossible to have under the present circumstances. Yes, talk to someone - a counselor - someone who can help you make sense of the mess your life has been. Best wishes and stay in touch here.

Go away to college. Start living your own life, and preparing yourself to be an independent self-supporting person who is in pursuit of happiness, if not always happy.

But also report the situation in your home, to social services, adult protection services, or any online report option your state has. Certainly this was not your responsibility at age 12. But before you leave home, I think it is now your duty.

Come back from time to time to let us hear how your life is progressing. We care!

Carrielyn, if you're worried that the police are going to arrest your mother for having marijuana, it's doubtful. Once they see the circumstances she's living in, they'll probably think it's not worth prosecution. However you could get the stuff out of the house before you call in the authorities. But since your dad is too proud, plus he's overwhelmed and angry about it, and your mother is incapable of asking for help, then if I were you I'd report this. You and your sister shouldn't have to deal with this forever. Your mother is only 64yrs old, so this could go on for another 20 years. Are you planning on giving up your future of a family of your own to take care of this? You need to look long term and decide how you want to proceed. What about your grandparents or other relatives that you can talk to? You said your sister is in college, is she away from all this? If so, then she would be the one to talk to about whether you should go away or stay local. I personally vote for the out of state option if you have it. Sorry about your folks, but they're grownups and can figure it out if you're gone. Good luck.

I would go to college, but also call social services. They should be made aware of the situation and you may be legally required to report it. Elder/disabled abuse laws in many states have expanded there definitions.

"Welcome to the DFPS internet reporting website.

The Department of Family and Protective Services provides this secure website for reporting suspicions of abuse, neglect, and exploitation of children, adults with disabilities, or people who are elderly (65 years or older).

This website is only for reporting situations that do not require an emergency response. An emergency is a situation where a child, adult with disabilities, or person who is elderly faces an immediate risk of abuse or neglect that could result in death or serious harm.

The Texas Family Code 261.101 requires professionals to make a report within 48 hours of first suspecting abuse, neglect or exploitation of children. The Human Resources code Chapter 48 (48.051) requires a person having cause to believe that an elderly or disabled person is in the state of abuse, neglect, or exploitation to report the information required immediately.

What if my report is an emergency?

Call 911 or your local law enforcement agency if the situation is an emergency.

You believe your situation requires action in less than 24 hours.
You prefer to remain anonymous.
You have insufficient data to complete the required information on the report.
You do not want an e-mail to confirm your report."

i've been there. it may have been 50 years ago, but, i was there. mother was unable to do "anything" without assistance, father was an verbally abusive alcoholic. i do not exaggerate, when i tell you that cars used to park in our front yard on friday and saturday nights to listen to the two of them scream at each other. YOU CAN DO NOTHING ABOUT YOUR PROBLEM ! EXCEPT TO LEAVE IT BEHIND, and get along with your life, or you will be destroyed by your unhealthy environment. frankly, if you cannot see how to become independent, consider joining one of the services. there is more to life than cleaning up after your mother and picking your father up from the driveway.

You poor child! My advise would be to go to college and let the sol called adults in your life sort out their issues. You are being used by them (however innocently) to maintain the status quo. Leave, live your life and let them take care of themselves. Oh, and when you get to college, find a couselor and start talking...about yourself and your dreams.

I know that's alot to read... If you'd like me to summerize here it is: My mom is immobile, my dad works, I have school(and wilk soon be off to college). Yet, we have no outside help to take care of her or our home. My dad is critical and abusive, my mom smokes weed to ease her pains. Do I have any options to help or do I have to say "as adults, they will handle it how they feel they should"? They problen with the last one is that it's not "they", it's my dad. My mom has never done anything to help herself out of her situation, even before she was handicapped. So should I help for her? That is what I want, but i don't know how to do so w out hurting my dad/family.

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