My mother-in-law has lived with my husband and me for 10 years. We invited her to live with us when we got married as my husband was a widower and his teenage children had lost their mother 4 years earlier. Thinking she would be a wonderful female family figure for the kids, we thought her smiling face and super social personality would make a big difference in a positive way for a blended family.
During the first 5 years, the kids were in high school and hubby and I both worked full time while Mom stayed home and read or tooted around in her car. Then she had to have knee replacement surgery and life went downhill from there.
After surgery, she had to spend 6 weeks in a local rehab facility but she didn't like the dinners, thought the sheets to too harsh, etc. So we would go visit twice a day, take her freshly laundered clothes and sheets, bring her dinner, etc. She was overjoyed. We learned then that she can't take any pain, expects to be waited on and all the real entitlement of her rich girl upbringing came out of the closet. She bossed us around like the help, as she continues to do and manipulated us into giving her whatever we wanted. Then two more knee surgeries, one for infection, now a permanent infected draining wound, etc.
Present day, I had cancer 3 years ago and was forced to retire (I'm 66, husband 64, is a Catholic school teacher). My energy level is low and I have assorted problems leftover from harsh chemo and just can't keep waiting on her anymore. She has money "but I'm saving it for my boys (3)" was her response when I asked her to hire someone to clean her level (the grand main floor, we "live" upstairs, rather humbly). I realized that the woman I've been treating as a beloved mother actually just used me to save money. Truth is, she plans on getting to be 100 and wants to continue declaring "I'm still a millionaire" when her stock statements arrive.. She becomes enraged when she forgets something and is reminded of it, tell me "I never said that" and "You're making it up because you have chemo brain and you hallucinate" (totally untrue.) She is in total control of our lives and has a wide social circle from her hometown 2 hours away ; she calls them and complains mightily about us with her "poor me." I am sick of her entitlement.
My husband, like his deceased father, always giver her her way. He cannot stand up for me. We rarely go anywhere because when we come home we hear "While you were gone I had a terrible dizzy spell and almost fell." The manipulation is continuous because she does NOT want to be left alone and refuses to hire someone to help her because "I"m independent and never ask for anything." (She won't ask; she manipulates us into doing things. Example: "I just spilled coffee on my rug but I'll get it later." That's my cue to go do it. She never asks but all of her wishes are addressed.
There is a nice assisted living facility nearbyl. It is a flat fee $6000 a month. She has stopped giving us $700 per month toward her living expenses. She tells anyone who will listen that she would "have money to spend if I didn't give them so much every month (never mentioning the amount.)" Then she bought 10 summer tops at Lands End in one order. She has plenty to spend, just not on anyone else.
Any and all advice appreciated. I told my husband that if she refuses and nothing changes, I will go to live with my best friend in FL for a while. I am a nurse and a natural caretaker. I cannot have her here and ignore her; for me that's ethically and morally wrong. But I must be relieved of this someone.