I am an only child. How do I deal with taking care of my 85-year-old mom alone?
I am exhausted. The kind of tired I'm talking about can't even be put into words. I'm physically tired, mentally tired, emotionally tired dealing with and taking care of my mom. We've never been close. Not one minute of one day. She was very verbally and physically abusive when I was growing up, she's always been a chronic complainer who's never satisfied, and never happy about anything. Nothing has ever been good enough for her, nothing is ever done 'right' in her eyes, and she's always talked to me as though I'm a brain dead idiot without two brain cells. When I was in school I was never allowed to do my own work. If I brought something home to do from school, she completely took over and did the entire thing, which caused a lot of resentment and anger in me. I still hear about how' ungrateful' I was to this day, and I'm 45.
I was so happy to be gone from her house and life. I had a job I loved, my little duplex, my wonderful yard, my dog, my social life. Then she starts calling. She wants me to move in here. I was horrified. It was no, no, no, and NO. My mom is also a die hard control freak of the worst kind. She's always felt the need to tell me what to do, how to do it, and when I could and couldn't do it. I've never been able to make even the most simple decision for myself without total chaos if she disagrees with it. Needless to say we've been at war a long time. She's the type that won't ever forget, or ever let anything drop. The slightest disagreement with her results in all out craziness. She views anyone disagreeing with her as a direct attack, and god forbid you go against her wishes. There is, and has always been, hell to pay. She'll go on and on and on about it for weeks, months, years. It just never ends. I was so happy to be gone. When she started asking me to move in here, I almost went into heart failure. I knew what was coming. For over a year and a half I dealt with endless phone calls, messages on my machine, threats, crying, screaming, name calling, theatrics that could of won academy awards, pleading, guilt trips, etc. Finally, I gave in and moved in here just to shut her up and get some peace. It was the biggest mistake I've ever made. I should have known there would be no peace.
When I first moved in, I was working full time, at a job that paid well, and that I loved. Unfortunately, every time I turned around, I had to take time off of work. My mom was in and out of the hospital for one thing or another, she had to go to doctor's appointments, she wanted me home because she wasn't feeling well, etc. I ended up losing my job because of so many absences.
After losing my job, I worked hard to keep up with the house, which is big, and the yard, which is huge, over an acre. I couldn't please the woman, and still can't. She complains from the minute she wakes up, until she goes to bed about what a 'lazy ass' I am, how I 'never do sh*t for her', and on and on and on. When I get one part of the house spotless, she complains that I didn't do the other half. When I start on the rest, she complains that the yard isn't done. I CAN'T take care of the yard, I'm one person, and a yard that big needs a crew, but she says I'm 'making excuses as usual'.
I feel like a rat in a trap. I clean up after my mom when she has some horrific accidents, I try and make sure she's clean and eats healthy, I try and keep up with everything related to her and her care, but it's just never enough, and I'm reminded of that daily. She ended up with an ear infection, and she even complained when I'd put the drops in her ears, saying I 'wasn't doing it right'. I didn't realize there was a 'wrong' way to put 4 drops in someone's ear. This is the story of my life with this woman.
I've been here almost 3 years now, and I feel literally like I'm a little crazy. There isn't one single day that goes by that my head isn't pounding. Noone wants to be around the woman. She runs them off with her never ending 'poor me' stories and misery. This isn't old age related either. She's been this way all my life, only now it's a 1000 times worse. She refuses to allow anyone in the house to care for her, and she won't go to a retirement home. I never leave these four walls anymore. I am angry, depressed, exhausted, weary, and sometimes I really wish either she would hurry up and die, or I would. Then comes the crushing guilt. I feel like a horrible awful person for feeling resentment and anger at being put in this situation, because there is noone else. I'm it. I have no friends in RL, I lost them all when I moved in here. I can't and won't invite anyone over here anyway, because my mom will not hesitate to tell anyone who'll listen how awful and horrible I am. Workers that come to the house, total strangers, hear all about it. Right now, I'm not living, I'm just existing, and most days I wish I wasn't. Thanks for listening. I needed that off my chest.