My elderly mother's bad behavior is ruining my marriage

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I've been the primary caregiver for my mother since she fell ill in 2000 and couldn't work anymore doing her in-come day care service. However, now several years later, I'm newly married and my husband has been wonderful regarding our having to care for my Mom. But, she has become more and more spiteful, vindictive, mean-spirited and I just can't care for my Mother anymore. My husband can't stand to be in the house with her. And, I feel like I don't know her anymore. Although my Mother and I have never had a wonderful, close loving relationship I have always respected her and tried to treat her with as much kindness as possible. Now, I am at my breaking point and I really need to place her somewhere so that my husband and I can have our life together. PLEASE HELP!! She is driving us insane and we are at each other's throats all the time. She wasn't prepared for this point in life and has no money, a very little life insurance policy that will only bury her and nothing else. I don't know what to do. I don't want to let her life end with me hating her. I want to be the best daughter I can by making sure she is cared for and I can have my own life now. I know that it sounds very selfish, but I'm learning so much as I go through this process of how NOT to age: save money, get adequate life insurance, stay busy, keep friends and learn to love life and be content no matter what age. I wish that my mother had learned these lessons before she got to this age. Now, it is burdensome being around here and having to care for her. My heart is heavy and I just want peace in my family and in my house. But, I know honestly that peace will only come when my mother is out of the house. Ugggghhhh!!!


Selfish to want to have a calm and loving home? Selfish to make a marriage work?
I can not help you on placing mom anywhere, but place yourself a little higher up than you have. You are a valuable person. Don't put your husband, or your marriage, or yourself on a bottom rung of this latter of life.
Good luck to you. And don't feel guilty for wanting a peaceful home.
Thanks for the encouragement. It is amazing how life can just catch you by surprise. I never even thought of my Mom getting older and not having anywhere else to go. And, I never thought I would be the person to have to care for her. This morning she went for a thorough checkup and everything came back normal. Other than normal aging and a little high blood pressure she is in wonderful health. Even though that's a blessing, when the doctor told her that she could possibly live to be 100 I thought I was going to pass out. Is caring for my mother for the next 20 years really my responsibility? I truly pray that I don't put my son through this situation. I'm working hard now to make sure I am financially able to care for myself and when life changes and my son gets older, I'll be able to retire myself into a nice senior community where my son won't have the burden of caring for his aging parent. I honestly didn't see this part of life coming and I wasn't prepared for it AT ALL!!
3930 helpful answers
KCofieldNY - this is what Medicaid is for. You are not responsible to house your mother to the detriment of your marriage. Even if you have to have a court appointed guardian for her, it's better than what is going on. If she has no money to speak of, she'll qualify for Medicaid and other help for impoverished people. If she doesn't need nursing care, there are subsidized housing units available for people with disabilities. You need help here. Go to your Social Services people and tell them she is in need. They will help her qualify for Medicaid.

You and your marriage are your priorities. Take the advice of the expert and find a different place for your mother to live or your peaceful life and marriage will be gone!!
Kcofield, if your mother has very little, there is so much she may qualify for. Carol, as always, had excellent advice. Schedule a visit with a social worker for a needs assessment. The nice thing is that social workers can identify what your mother qualifies for and knows how to make it happen. It may be that your mother qualifies for Section 8 housing, so she could get a nice place and have to pay very little each month. I know she qualifies for subsidized housing, since her income if small. Many senior communities are glad to work with subsidized and Section 8 housing. She probably will also qualify for a food card and senior meals program. Often senior living facilities have buses or vans that go to grocery stores each week, and have meals on wheels come in with food. There are a lot of resources out there.

I hope you can find something perfect for your mother. We want what is best for our parents. Sometimes living with us is not best for them or for our other family members. When that is the case, it helps everyone to find something better.
Oh melaniemorris that is so very mean and unfair. We can take care of our parents without destroying our marriages and our own health. Taking care of an adult is in no way like taking care of a baby.

I wish you peace!
Littletonway: I couldn't agree more. I get so tired of people saying that our parents changed our diapers and raised us. Yes, they did and they did the best they could. We do the best we can also. If our health is failing due to the care and stress we endure, it is a fact and can't be compared to changing diapers when the parent was in their 20's. Compassion needs to be allowed for all concerned, not just at the expense of the adult child.

KC: Try to find a good place where your mom can be safe. She will qualify for assistance. You can be her advocate, but you don't have to sacrifice every scrap of happiness in your life to be with her 24-7. I agree that you should get her tested by a specialist to determine if dementia is an issue. Otherwise, she may just be unhappy that you have another focus in your life.
Your situation sounds EXACTLY like ours - your mother can no longer handle her losses - or anger - getting old is AWFUL - it robs a person of everything and now that you have found love - she is jealous of that too.

My doctor said my MIL is suffering from anger/rage issues that cause her to attack me. He suggested that we move her OUT of our home ASAP. We cannot do that - BUT YOU CAN!!!

Your mother will qualify for Medicaid - start visiting facilities and find one that is pleasant, clean, has good 'marks' and then place her. You will still be her daughter, the one who looks out for her interests. You will just not have the 24/7 duty. You can be her daughter again and do things that will help her look forward to your visits.

The parent/child relationship is NOT the same a the child/parent relationship. Parents care for children and watch them grow and thrive and LEAVE. When caring for an elderly parent - we watch them grow frail, diminish and DIE - all the while - many care givers suffer abuse at the hands of their elderly charge and suffer enormous guilt because we cannot 'do better, BE better'. We have a hard time complaining - because we feel so much guilt over their loss of health, mobility, friends, home - we just keep GIVING AND GIVING until we having nothing left to give. Everyone asked how the elder is doing and no one EVER asks how we are doing.

No, caring for your child IS IN NO WAY, SHAPE OR FORM the same as caring for an elderly parent. There should be a 'handbook' on the counter of every doctor's office WARNING children what they are in for if they undertake the care of their elders.
I am in the same situation with my mother. She is very mean and spiteful. i caught her taking her sleep meds out of her box and telling me i didn.t put it in the box. just so she could get more. My new husband of seven year has decided to become a truck driver so he wont be at home with her. And I also take care of his ten year old , his fifteen year old and his 21 year old daughter with severe cerebral palsy. I have two children in their twenty.s. They rarely come visit....because of my noisey, gossiping mom. I feel so trapped!!!
My heart is broken for you.. I am about to lose my marrige and the love of my life by trying to do the right thing and take care of my ageing mother in husband is angry all the time and I feel like I have a bullseye on me... no physical abuse of any type... just that great fun loving wonderful man I married seems to have dissappeared..I feel like I have lost myself as well...he is always angry and I always feel sad or guilty that I cant do more for him or his mom

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