So confused!!

Started by

So I had this brilliant idea of having my 91 yo mum come stay with me for 3 months over the holidays. I was looking forward to having her but I am now counting the days...which makes me feel like crap. This woman is no longer the mum I grew up with and I'm am so confused! Her emotions are constantly up and down and I am doing my very best to make sure she is comfortable and having what she needs and yet, she'll snap at me for no reason. Makes me want to bawl my head off. I don't understand. It's almost like she's bipolar or something. I DO understand she is frustrated with the need for dependency but she seems to take that all out on me and accuse me of things SHE feels or does. She is not demanding in any way so again, I feel guilty for just wanting my house back to the way it was before she got here. I am an only child and she is married but her husband doesn't do much to help her. How do you deal with the unnecessary rude comments that feel like a punch? AND the guilt for having these feelings...oh the guilt...


You need a thick skin. Realize that she is lashing out at you because she knows you love her and she can get away with it. Does she have dementia? Dementia causes all sorts of behavior some of which vary between the more than seventy types. Just try to be as patient as you can and bless you for helping her through this normally difficult time of year.

Are there senior groups that you could take her to? She could make some friends, have fun doing activities, while you get some much needed respite. Perhaps a day program for the elderly?
Thanks, glad. No, no dementia-she's totally here mentally but suffering from post polio syndrome which does cause her pain. As far as I know though, it's fairly controlled. She's not really interested with interacting with anyone her age; she's always been kind of a loner and more so in her elderly years. I work all day so she's stuck upstairs alone all day which she's content with. It's the weird off handed comments that I have a hard time taking. If I take her tea and ask if there's anything else she wants she'll snap at me because she didn't hear me. Deep breath...
Three months (did you mean to say 3 weeks?) is a long time to be away from our normal routines, both for you and her. You say she is not the mother you remember, well neither are you the daughter she remembers, you have each lived separate lives for many years, and life experiences have shaped each of you in many different ways since your childhood. Throw in a little physical and mental decline and you have the recipe for disaster, or maybe a comical farce depending on how you want to view it.
They say you can't go home again, I think you have gotten a glimpse of what that saying is all about! Don't feel guilty for wanting your life back, I bet secretly she feels the same way ;)
Sea, count your blessings, no dementia! This would not be possible at all otherwise. How far from you does she live? Maybe she is ready for assisted living near you? Maybe arrange for some tours while she is with you? Possible a week respite for you while she checks out a place for a week or two?
Cwill, yep, 3 MONTHS. Thanks or the feedback and yeah, I think I got a big dose of that fact and yes, I'm sure she'd love to go back to her routine although she tells me shes more relaxed here than she is at home (??). Glad...i know! I'm very fortunate with the dementia part; I cannot even imagine how that must be for others. We're both on opposite sides of the country and I see her fairly regularly during the year but never for 3 months at a time! She's here VISITING me so to put her somewhere while she here...just can't do that. She's got to go back home to her own home and husband in about a month so I just need to be patient and get through this. "Suck it up" as they say. thanks for all the feedback!

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