Just found this forum and boy do I need it! :o)

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Let me apologize in advance for the long post that's about to ensue. I've been caring for my mother in various capacities for over 20 years. She's 90 now and never drove or led an independent life and we live together. She was never proactive in her own well-being and somehow I took it on. (Where was my crystal ball, lol.) I don't work and have constant responsibility for her. I manage every aspect of her life which includes figuring out all of her sensitivities to meds, fragrances, foods, supplements and whatever else is left. :o( She has no participation in this. She is able to do so but there is absolutely nothing, even threats, that will change her actions. Believe me, I've tried EVERYTHING! So, she is who she is, will not change, and I have to figure it all out, pick up the pieces when she does things she's not supposed to, gets injured, sick, or whatever else that happens that could have easily been preventable. The bottom line is, I just don't want to do it ANYMORE! I do have caregivers that come in the house, for which I am grateful, but the bulk is still on me. Last night she was sobbing for hours and had bathroom issues. Yesterday she smelled gas in the house (there was no smell) and had doors and windows open while it was cold outside and continued to complain the her nose is burning. (Not stuff I haven't experienced with her before.) Every day it's either too hot in the house or too cold so the thermostat continually gets adjusted. If it's too hot, she can't breathe. "I need air, I need air." The list just goes on and on. She will do absolutely nothing to make this any easier on me yet she'll say that she doesn't want me to get sick. Today I told her how stressed I am and her typical response was, "Not because of me." She's in la la land and will probably stay there but I need to find some ways of coping when you just don't want to do it anymore. There are some support groups I've gone to but I need more frequency than once a month. I've talked to counselors but I'm not getting anywhere. I need to get some kind of life for myself (not sure I know what that is) before I totally lose it and I think I'm pretty close to that. I've read a lot of comments you all have shared about not having the kind of support from friends or family that is actually helpful and that is the case for me as well. If I never had to do another thing for my mother, that would be too soon. I really don't just want to rant, I am wanting to find coping mechanisms on a day to day basis when I feel I just can't do it any longer. I have aged so much in the past 2 years especially. My health is suffering. The anger and resentment are unsurmountable as she continues to take absolutely no responsibility for her well-being yet will complain about getting older and that she can't understand how she got this way. The really sad thing is that her physical problems can be greatly improved but she absolutely will not do what is necessary to achieve that. I'm a very pro-active person and for years I would be constantly encouraging her to take charge of her health. Part of me doing that so persistently was because I wanted to avoid caring for her in even greater capacities which apparently hasn't worked. Well, you can't get through to someone who doesn't want to hear it. I have gotten myself sick over the years in trying to help her. Then, something will happen to her and I have to find the solutions where again, she won't participate in. Of course there's so much more to the story but I know all of you really get it. At this point, I want to find ways to not be bothered or be less bothered by her voice, her requests, her neediness, her outcries, her illnesses and just about everything else about her, lol. I'm open to hearing anything you might want to share. Thanks so much for listening! You guys are great!


It takes a lot of patience to be the caregiver for a family member. It's understandable that you are exhausted and drained. If you think you've had enough, then why not find other options for her care? It sound like she needs total care. Maybe, it's time.

I have found that seniors aren't keen on change and they seem to resist accepting ideas that might help their life or be good for them. I'm not sure why, but, its something that I learned to live with. I pick my battles and then let the rest go. I figure if they are their age, they should be able to do pretty much what they want, as long as it's not terribly harmful. For example, I stopped witching about my parents and medication. They don't have dementia and can make that decision for themselves, so I leave that to them, even though I have my opinion on it. AND I don't comment on their diet. They eat as they please. My witching wouldn't matter anyway, so I save my concerns to things like keeping my dad off of ladders! lol

Some of your mom's behavior sounds like dementia to me. I'm not sure if an evaluation would be beneficial, but it might explain some of her behavior. Things like delusions, anxiety, unexplained crying, paranoia, being very cold when it's not cold, could indicate dementia. I'd talk to her doctor. If you know what is causing it, it might help you realize that it's not you, but whatever the cause, venting can help make you feel a little better.

Have you thought about what your options are for your mom's care?
Take a long vacation leave her with a nurses aide go for 30 days and rest clear your mind and then look into other options....good luck
Thank you Sunnygirl1. She does have a very slight case of dementia and I'm thankful it's not worse. As far as options for her care, being in the home now is the best option - for her anyway but not for me. There are avenues that I'm pursuing for more care in the home but for reasons that are too detailed to explain, it can't happen for awhile. She was in a rehab facility for a few weeks not too long ago but it was actually more stressful for me as it took quite awhile for them to understand her sensitivities so I was constantly there monitoring everything. Most of her behavior now is just a magnified version of what it's been for years. If it was new behavior, I think I'd have more tolerance but I've been dealing with her similar ways for so long that I've reached a point now where I've had enough. I do appreciate your input. It does help knowing that others understand!
People around here definitely understand. Being a caregiver can come in a number of packages. Regardless of the form, it's stressful.

I agree with luvbugg, in that taking a break would help clear your head. I know it's hard to step back and let others take over her care, but it's for both of your benefit. Keep in mind that with seniors and especially with dementia patients, you cannot always please them. They often are difficult and picky. They will never take responsibility for themselves. Even if they were able years ago, they no longer have that ability. It's a tough thing to swallow.

Trained professionals know how to handle people like this. You can explain what she's like and they will take it from there. Eventually, you will need help. Regardless of finances, there are ways to get help. I'd explore it.

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