I am the enemy...

Started by

I am the enemy. As far as my Mom with ALZ is concerned my siblings and I have have taken everything away from her. She calls my Aunts and tells them terrible things that we have supposedly done to her. All either completely untrue or misconstrued. Then I get really nasty emails from her sisters. Now Mom says she wants to move far away to be with her “family”, which doesn't include her 3 children or 7 grandchildren. I do not think this move would be in her best interest. But I’m damned if I do and damned if I don’t. As far as she is concerned I’m the enemy ... so I’ve lost her either way.

20 Comments

LoLo, her sisters know she has ALZ, don't they? So just explain to them that not everything she says can be taken as gospel, and that unfortunately you need to take steps to keep her safe and look after her even if she doesn't understand that anymore. I would give a detailed explanation just once, perhaps with a link to some websites about Alzheimer's, any nasty emails after that would get a 3 word reply "She Has Alzheimer's".
As for letting her go to live somewhere else, would you let an unhappy pre teen daughter do that? At first it can be hard to wrap your head around the parent/child role reversal that must take place, but your mom needs you and your sibs to firmly, yet lovingly, do what is in her best interest and stop worrying about her anger towards you.
It’s way beyond giving them an explanation. My Mom is damaged. Maybe I ought to honor her wishes. If she stays she will only continue to be mean and nasty. What’s the difference between a nursing home here and a nursing home in MASS if that is what she wants.
Tell the aunt if she is so concerned about your mom, she can take your mom in. After a few months, she will beg you to take your mom back.
E-mail her sisters back.
Reply:
"Come and get her, she has Alzheimers".
LoLo,

There's no "win" with this situation. Been there; done that. Your Mom with Alz will not stop demonizing you, no matter what you do. Your mom, as you once knew her, is gone. It might be as she progresses into her disease, her contempt for you may ease up or go away altogether, but maybe not. Relatives who are "out of the loop" and even some "in the loop" may not ever fully understand, no matter how you try to defend yourself. Moving your mom to be with her "family" doesn't sound like a good idea. I would recommend doing topic searches on this site. You will find many in the same boat who learned to grow a thick hide and quit thinking in terms of winning or losing. You're in for a long, bumpy ride. Take care of yourself. Look into assisted living or memory care for your mom; it may be more affordable than you think! And whatever you do, don't move your mom in with a family member! Stories abound on this forum of those who did. Some are successful, but it seems most live to regret it!
And it bears repeating: first and foremost, take care of yourself!
They know she has Alzheimer’s. I sent them the whole cognitive evaluation as they implied I was making it up

She wouldn’t move in with one of them. She would move into an assisted living facility. She currently resides at an assisted living facility. 

Her narrative to her family is my siblings and I took everything away from her and stuck her in a nursing home. That all this happened suddenly. Nothing could be further from the truth. 
The real enemy is the dementia. It helped me to keep that firmly in mind.
Lolo,
Of course anywhere other than where your Mom is at this very moment would be an imporovement in her eyes.

Not many elders go to a facility without complaining about something or everything. If you’ve read much on this forum it’s very common.

I agree you are not the enemy! You have your Mom safe and taken care of. You are doing your job. Are your relatives prepared to do what you are doing for the long haul. I think not!

It’s just flat unfair for your relatives to judge! Have they visited your Mom lately? Or are they just clueless about Alzheimer’s in general?

Good advice from above posters. If Aunt’s think they can handle the situation better the decision will be final. “All Exchanges Final - No Returns”!
They have only visited her once in 15 years.
Lolo,
That explains a lot. Don’t worry about their opinion. They don’t get an absentee vote.

Hang in there. As long as you are being an advocate for your Mom and seeing that she is taken care of that’s all anyone can expect.

Keep the conversation going (or start a new one)

Please enter your Comment

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support