How do I deal with family intrusion with my day to day care for my octogenarian mother?

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I live w/ my mom in her home. My siblings live in other states. One of them has joint financial accts w/ my mom. I have day-to-day care responsibilities for her. The one on her accts wants full control. My other sibling is supportive & encouraging while offering positive suggestions. This past week my mom had doc appt which resulted in recommendations now that my Dad has been deceased for 1 year: increase her weight (lost 7 #s in 6 mos) & socialize. She does NOT want to socialize but is receptive to me not only managing her meds (vits, pain reliever, recent anti-dep) and recently added Ensure supplement but one sibling NOT being encouraging and supportive may cause her demise. I will be returning to my grief counselor for suggestions & also turning to this website for assistance in this matter as I am sure others have experienced this as well. I will not abandon my mom but was disappointed to see that my brother printed & mailed her a copy of the email I sent re: her doc's dire concerns about her health peppered with compelling statements that, as doc stated: "I don't want to lose you as well". I don't like the talking behind my back when I am not home, not responding to my emails informing sibling in question of things going on here, and the violation of my privacy while sharing the info. Perhaps I went too far involving family members who do not share my desire to do whatever it takes to keep my mom alive!?! I wonder how much should I be sharing. I wonder why others don't share my values. I wonder if my sibling was still living nearby if she would lean on him & not me. He moved 7 years ago to get away from this responsibility but keeps his finger in this pie yet his own mantra is "too many cooks in the kitchen" & we all need to bow out when he is seemingly in charge but when I am managing day-to-day activities, he still wants the control. I know I am not alone & look forward to suggestions anyone has in dealing with this problem. I know others have experiences they can share with me so I can continuing caring for my mom w/ all my heart despite the interference by others. What do you suggest? Yes, counseling, that's for sure. What else can I do? How do I rid myself of the resentment I feel? The feeling of intrusion and interference? How do I deal w/ the gossip that occurs when I am not present? Bottom line: how do I continue to care for my mom & keep my head above water when others are trying to drown me? How do I deal w/ those that are sabotaging what I am doing for my mom. I acknowledge my mom plays a part in this as this person is her "golden boy" & "spouse substitute" if only from a distance. He even says he will visit & then finds reasons to cancel. I know this is long but I sincerely appreciate you reading this, offering suggestions, and encouraging me. Thanks, Peg

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Hi Peg,
You said it in your note, but I'm highlighting it here. You are not alone in this - not even a little. My guess is that you will hear from many people on the site who will share their stories.
We all have to make choices, and one of your best choices is counseling. Keep that up, as it will help. The resentment is what is hurting you, but it's hard not to resent behind your back sharing about your mom, when you are the primary caregiver. Knowing that you probably can't stop this may be your best bet. Talk to your counselor about tips on "detaching with love." It's hard, but it can save your sanity.
You may want to read one article about this:
The article is about abusive parents, but the same process needs to part of your sibling relationships, as well. Keep up the counseling, and please ask for help in detaching from some of the emotional traps, unless your counselor has other suggestions.
Take care and keep reading for comments.
Hi Peg, My heart goes out to you. This is almost exactly what is happening in our family right now. My mother has always been closest to my sister. Years ago, my sister had a will drafted for my mother by an attorney friend of hers that naturally names my sister as administrator for everything. This was done with no knowledge by anyone else in the family and it is interesting because even at that time (more than 15 years ago) I was financially supporting my mother, paying her rent every month out of my own pocket, keeping her home and car (which I bought for her) in repair and my sister was denying that she had the means to help with any of that. (Apparently she had the means to pay the attorney though.) Then she moved out of state 10 years ago and has not seen our mother in nearly a year. Mom is now 90 and for the last several years I have been assisting her with living on her own by making meals, doing laundry, upkeep of the house, etc. I have tried to get my mother in a different living position for the last couple of years. She has had numerous falls, numerous hospitalizations and infections, she is incontinent, she is isolated. My sister, who apparently thinks she can evaluate our mother's condition over a phone line, has been my mother's ally in resisting to the point that she will call alternative living facilities to get fees to tell my mother and then the two of them will both scream at me things like "it will cost $8 for every 15 mins for someone to sit with her at the drs. office" (and I'll say what's your point, why wouldn't I continue to take her to the dr?) I have also had the experience of sharing medical concerns with siblings thinking I was keeping them up to date, only to have them use those updates against me. My resentment is huge. I have been able to detach to the point that I no longer expect assistance (so don't suffer from disappointment when I am rejected), I no longer cry when my mother is mean to me, I don't share updates (I don't deny info if asked, I simply no longer use them as a sounding board and I stick very much to the facts) and I'm resigned to whatever will be, will be. I am trying, though having a harder time as I'm a codependent personality, with detaching to the point where I focus on my own life in things like vacations and family holidays. But I know as hard as it is for me to not put my mother's needs first, which is what I've been doing most of my life including childhood as she was an alcoholic, it is the right thing to do. If we don't do it, we will not only have more resentment, we will continue to sacrifice experiences in our own life that we cannot recover, we can't get back time with our own family, and where does this end? My mom and your mom are in the final period of their lives. If we don't make our own lives now, what will we be left with? I know how hard it is to let go of being the perfect caregiver, but please make sure that your primary focus is on you and your own family. I will say a prayer for you.
I appreciate the reference to the article; I have it read it and will read it again to glean more from it than I did the first time. I also appreciate that you acknowledged that I am not alone and also that although resentment can and does dictate our actions at times, you also allowed me to feel this way at this time considering all the issues at hand.
I definitely will be calling my therapist and hopefully will be able to get an appointment this week, if not as soon as she is free for me. The article brought to mind the many years my mom has favored the other sibling and left we other two feeling as though we are on the outside looking in. So, yes, the article is chockfull of wonderful information and suggestions that I will be implementing. Thank you for your response and I do embrace all other comments that many will be sharing with me. Thank you, Peg
Soverytired: thank you for sharing your story with me. I appreciate it. I have returned to school (university for a Bachelors) and that is my life at this time. That is where my counselor is and I will be calling her today. I love one line you wrote:" who apparently thinks she can evaluate our mother's condition over a phone line" made me smile. That is very true. With that being said I am reminded of when my mother's mother was in another state and my mother said she would not help her by having her move here to the state we live in because she wanted to travel and have a life ... my sibling learned to care for my mom from afar by my mom's own modeling it years ago. I also read in your post, that touched me very much, that you no longer tell others what is going on. Yeah, I crossed that threshold last night when I saw the printed copies that were mailed to my mom. I will not voluntarily tell anyone anything again. My thought was that if everyone who has been calling would encourage my mom to eat then she would not end up in a nursing home or worse, but obviously that was just food for gossip and time spent talking behind my back. I will continue to give my mom her meds and ensure but with less heartfelt worry than last week. I saw this health issue as imperative to living; others did not share my view. If this sibling does come to visit again, he is once again bringing his girlfriend to "site see" (yeah they did this shortly after the funeral last year, too weird for me but that's his values) and not visit my mom full time. I know counseling will help me through that visit as well. Counseling seems to be the common thread here so that's the highest priority for me today that's for sure. Soverytired: I share your ethical and moral value of putting our elder's mother's needs first and also balancing that responsibility with caring for ourselves as well. Thank you for sharing your story; i do feel less alone. Peg

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