Caregiving has rekindled poor childhood memories
I'm new here and literally found this forum by typing in verbatim, "My elderly mother is driving me crazy"... Up popped this site and I've been perusing the forum for about 30 minutes before signing up. I believe that this is divine intervention ;-)
My situation is a bit complex but I'm sure there must be others out there who can relate. I'll try to keep it short...
I am currently caring for my 65 y/o mother that has suffered from a massive stroke and has had a slew of health problems to due poor eating and lifestyle. My entire life my mom was obese and never did anything about her weight. She worked fulltime and by the time she got home, she was too tired to make dinner so she'd either rush home and cook a quick, processed-food type meal (like hamburger helper) or she'd bring home McDonald's or Wendy's for dinner. My mom had 3 girls and didn't do much to establish a bond with us. She stayed in church all the time... dragging us with her. My mom and dad have been married over 40 years... I stopped counting as it doesn't feel like they're married at all. My parents share a house and are more like roommates than a married couple. They have separate rooms and cook separate meals, etc. My dad treats my mom like crap and he always has. He's cheated on her several times and he started molesting my oldest sister when she was 14. When my sister got up the courage to tell my mom, my dad denied it and my mom cussed my sister out and then put her out of the house. My sister went to stay with my aunt and they went to the police. When my dad realized that this could end up really badly for him (he's an ex-cop), he then admitted to doing it and said he did it because he was drunk. He vowed to never to it again and they worked out an agreement that if my sister recanted her confession and just say that she made it all up, my dad said that she could stay with my aunt and he'd give her financial support.
I didn't find out the truth about the molestation until I was about 16 or 17 years old. I'd always wondered why my sister didn't live my us but my mom and dad always made it seem like she was a troubled teen. I know understand that she was indeed a troubled teen because she was being RAPED by her own FATHER!!!
My oldest sister is now in her forties and has yet to heal from the trauma. She struggles with alcohol addiction and has had bad relationships with men. My sister and I have always had a strained relationship because she has somewhat of a deep seated resentment toward my other sister and I. She's admitted that she wonders why she was the one picked on to be molested... She wonders why not one of the other sisters? She feels like my dad didn't and still doesn't love her because of what he did to her, and I totally understand her feelings. I have no idea how I would handle everything that she has survived...
Now fast forward to the present day... My oldest sister is deep in alcohol addiction and has gone thru several evictions due to mismanagement of her money and poor budgeting. My middle sister is married and barely speaks to my mom or dad. She has her own family and her own life and makes it clear that she calls or comes around when it's convenient for her. My mom will sit and call her everyday and my sister just looks at the caller ID and lets the voicemail answer. (I know this because I've been at her house when my mom called). Part of me doesn't blame her either because my mom will call you but expect you to lead the conversation. She calls me everyday and says all of 3 or 4 sentences. I get frustrated and feel guilty, mad, hurt, and ashamed all at the same time. Part of me is sad that I never had a mother that I could talk to and go to for guidance. She only cared about putting up a front for the church folk. Then I'm angry that she didn't leave my dad after raping my sister, HER DAUGHTER! Part of me then feels like she deserves the maltreatment that she gets from my dad... he walks around the house, cooks for himself and sits at the table and eats it right in front of her. He will go to the store and not ask my mom if she needs anything. This also makes me angry at him for mistreating my mom but then I say think "oh well, this is what you get for sleeping with the enemy!" I hate my parents for destroying my sister's life and not getting her the treatment that she needed. But I love my parents and I know that I should honor them as well. I am the only one that goes by to visit my parents and my dad often says that if it weren't for me, it would feel as if they didn't have any kids at all. I am just a big ball of conflicting emotions. Some days I'm able to suppress my feelings but when my mom does things like call me at 11:30 at night just to "see what I was doing" I get really angry and frustrated. I'm in school pursuing my degree and I get no support from either of them. I don't need their financial support but an "atta girl" every now and then would really mean a lot.