To whom it may concern, I have a mother who is 70 years old, separated and starting to forget many things, she also has had control issues, my father was very controlling with her, she also was cheated on her by him, last year one of her sisters died of a stroke, another has Alzheimer and the sister doesn't recognized her, she is part of a family 8 , she is from south america and she just recently arrived from visiting them , she gets angry for everything we do , financially we are not in good shape and we are struggling to help her , my sisters and i have discussed these problems , and we don't seem to know what to do , she doesn't want to go to a therapist she says shes not crazy ,also she wants independence , she says her soninlawss ( my sisters husbands ) are controlling my sisters, im currently divorced and had to move live with her , we dont want her to live alone , she is pretty healthy , but she is becoming very stubborn and doesn't want to talk to any of us , everything we do is wrong , she says that she wants to run away and live some where else , we are trying for her to go to be part of a volunteer program , because we feel she is isolating herself , she is a regular member of her church , but lately she doesn't want to be part of these groups , she used to be very active , please help me navigate this enormous issue so I can help my mom and sisters work through all this so it can brings us closer together and help my mom have a more satisfying life.
thank you

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It sounds like your mother has suffered a lot of loss and is in depression. I don't know what you can do if she won't seek help for it. Perhaps you can talk to her regular doctor about the changes you've seen. He/she might want to try an antidepressant to see if it could help some. Loss or interest in things once enjoyed and irritability are two signs of depression. If it is depression, it is most likely treatable, and everyone will feel a lot better if the depression lifts.

Your mom is upset because she knows her memory is failing her and she is scared of what may happen to her. She is also frustrated when even the simplest of things are harder or take longer to deal with. Not to mention she is mourning the loss of who she was in her youth. She feels death is impending and is scared she will lose her mind and be shoved into a home. Hence the reason she wants to run. She is being controlling because it is the only thing she can control. Since she obviously cannot control her mental and physical state. Kinda like how I go on a huge cleaning tangent when things in my life are beyond my control. By my cleaning it is my way of controlling my current environment. More likely than not she is transferring anger of herself onto others. Like when I get scared I come off to others as a person mad as hell, because I refuse to show my vulnerability. To me being scared is a sign of weakness. As it may very well be with her. Ask her what she would like to do in place of her church. She may be having issues with not wanting people she knows to see her in such a weakened state. You and your sister get counseling! Call your local hospitals and see if they have elder care programs for the actual care-givers. They are often free and will help you feel more connected and less alone in dealing with her. Also contact nursing homes, assisted living facilities and ask them about people/programs in the area for care-givers. We are care-givers need support and help in understanding what the people that we care for are going through and often times we just need to be able to vent about issues. Big hugs! What you are doing is fantastic for the effort, but I can clearly see how this is not a healthy environment for you and is maddening to say the least.

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