My mother is 81. She is not easy to live with.

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If you don't pay attention to her then you are slighting her. As this is 2013, I bought champagne for midnight. She told me that she might not make it to midnight. I asked (it was 8:30) if she wanted the champagne now. She said yes. It was 11:30 and she said that she is going to bed. I noticed that her attitude was (what I call) weird. She woke up this morning giving me short answers to my questions (how did you sleep or do you want your tea). When I asked what was wrong, she told me she wanted champagne at midnight. She went to bed because she was tried of waiting for me. My mother likes to hold grudges. I live in her house free of charge. However, I am the one who takes her to the doctor and shopping. I am tired and have no place to go and no money. I have to live here. Any suggestions?


The changing story scenarios can certainly be crazy making. We went through one today that made me feel like I needed to check into an asylum. I don't have anything to say that will help. Most of the time I can't figure out if it is memory loss and confusion or deliberate manipulation, since my mother is capable of both. I'm not sure from what you wrote exactly what your mother wanted and when she wanted it, but she seemed to be blaming you for not doing it. I guess the only thing we can do is let it roll off us and do the best we can.
Thank you will try. But this happens often. It is like walking on egg shells. Just tried to apologize and was rebuffed. She has always been like this but with age it get worse.
jerlisha, are you disabled or have some reason you can't support yourself? I know that is the case for many people. But what would you do if you didn't have Mom's house to live in? Find subsidized housing? I don't think that you are living "free of charge." I think there is a big cost here. I think Mom has you over a barrel and she couldn't afford to be so manipulative if you could afford to move out.

Did your mom forget that she had champagne at 8:30, per her request? If so, might there be some dementia here? That really would change the nature of my answer.
I moved in with my Mother when she became sick with c. diff and broke her wrist in two places. She didn't realize she was so weak from the c. diff and fell in the bathroom trying to catch herself when she stood up. Eventhough I was at the other end of the house, her voice didn't reach me so she lay there for hours which effected her recovery time for both. After her hospital visit, she had to have someone stay with her and I moved in eventhough she wasn't ready for me I found out very soon. and it did not work. I was under so much stress and pressure from her ungrateful attitude and unhappiness that I begin to realize I was getting ill myself already having FMS, CFIDS, Altered Immune System, etc. I had already been praying for God to allow me to stay with mother, I felt obligated, it was my duty in the eyes of God even, but it was interfering with my relationship with God, my other siblings, my church and family there. I know I did the right thing by praying for God to allow me to stay with her until the c. diff was gone but after that she became more and more imposssible due to some issues unsettled with God I feel. You see, God revealed to me she was taking her past hurts out on me, and God answered my prayer after I started praying for Him to show me the way. He revealed to me that I needed to find a home to rent or whatever near her; my brother and his wife lived near her, too. Well, after I had been praying about two weeks, I looked out the window one day and a truck was backed up to a little house across from my brother; just my size and price. The people had lived there for 9 years. I moved in with the help of our Youth Group and ladies from Bible Study in one day! Praise God, I knew after I moved in I was following God's will for me and my life. She is so much better, not so sure she even has Alzheimer's at the age of 83. I just thank God everyday for my little home close to her and my brother so I can see them each day, fix meals for Mom, do bills, go shopping, and spend time with her even though her attitude has not changed much, I am so thankful she is still here and look past anything negative she says or does cause I am so thankful God spared her life and she is still with us. We all have things between our parents that need settled through God's divine intervention before they leave us here on this earth since we do not want to be separated from them in heaven either.
All your suggestions have been helpful. I have a sister who lives 75 miles from us. The last time she visited her mother (I have to tell her) was August 2012. I can remember when the last time she visited before this. Mom receives a 5-10 min call every sunday. When Mom had her first heart attack 12 years ago (2 am), it was me who dealt with everything. She did come later in the morning, but stayed until the afternoon and then left. I was at the hospital (35miles from home) 7am to 8pm everyday. My sister did call everyday. Mom has had some diabetes problems since then and my sister made a visit at the hospital (which surprised me). My sister has helped me in the past financially.

My question is this, I assume there are siblings who do not want to be involved and leave it to one child to deal with. But why is this....I would like to hear from one of these sibling who does this.

Thanks for listening
You can read other threads here about dysfunctional families and resentment toward siblings. The end result is you just have to accept that not everyone can be a caregiver. Siblings may have a difficult time seeing their parent decline, distance and their own lifestyle may limit involvement and some just can't handle having to deal with the physical and emotional needs required in caregiving.

You need to set boundaries and take control of your life. Call your local aging services group about what options may be available for your Mom. Talk to her doctor about home health providers. They will do an evaluation of your Mom needs and offer whatever assistance she qualifies for.

I truly do not believe we are to sacrifice our life, wellbeing and health to take care of our parents. You have to take care of yourself first to be there for your Mom.

At the minimum, perhaps your sister can give you a weekend off each month (either in person or by paying for a caregiver) so you can have time for yourself.

Good luck and God bless!
My sibs expected me to care for my mom 24/7/365 because I was closest to my mom. They don't feel my life is as important as theirs. I'm not married nor do I have kids. Neither of them are married and their kids are grown. So, THEY elected me to do it. I had taken care of my mom and her BF for years. When my mom's BF got sick, I walked away telling them to make other arrangements because I couldn't do it anymore without help. My punishment, I cannot see/talk to my mom anymore. My health has gone down hill and I have a mental illness that I am on disability for. My bro feels I just sit on my a$$ all day and do nothing so I should be responsible for everything. I had to set boundaries for my family always taking advandage of me. He is the cause of most of my mental illness. There are many reasons sibs won't help or feel someone else in the family should take care of others. For two years I cared for my grandma in my house. My sibs never called or came over to visit with her. My mom helped but her sister refused to. Go figure.
Closest as in talking to her and doing things that they didn't do. I did her finances, shopping, entertainment, etc.
@ jerlisha,
"She has always been like this but with age it gets worse "
i think thats an important observation. its harder to discount spiteful or manipulative behavior as a health or age issue when you know this person has had these issues as long as youve been alive. my only advice is try not to set the record straigh or rationalize with the oldtimer. their thinking is not rational and youll only end up more frustrated.. trying to rationalize also gives the oldtimer a brief victory because they have you stammering to defend yourself. im not new at dementia caregiving. been at it for 6 years now. at this point id matter of factly tell her i dont give a damn if you ever drink champaign and walk away. shes trying to get on top of your head. it is not a time to show weakness.. sound harsh? not as brutal as living your every waking moment for someone else only to end up emotionally and physically ill yourself..
ps, letting your mothers bs bounce off of you will cause her to respect you ultimately. i was cooking chili dogs last nite when my mother told me how she would be doing this task. i told her " im happy for you " and never missed a beat.
meh, it takes practice..
@ yogi,
i like how the non caregiver family members tell you how you could be doing a much better job. when you can let that crap fly over you without responding then your becoming one heck of a strong person. also not responding to them tells them that their opinion doesnt even interest you or warrant a reply. i know ive strayed off subject a little but not letting others' control your emotions is a good step towards getting healthier yourself..

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