I am new to this board, still trying to figure out how this works but seeing a lot of stories similar to mine. Dad died five years ago and I was left overseeing mom. She is 77 and an old 77. She depends on me for EVERYTHING. I am a 41 year old female that did not find someone to share a life with. My boyfriend of more than a year left me for unknown reasons more than a year ago so I am totally alone in this being an only child. I have a GREAT job at a local hospital, but we have affiliated with a larger hospital about an hour away and as time goes on my job may be transitioned out of town. Mom abuses wine, I admit that I am following in her footsteps as I have NO help. She has no siblings, no relatives that I can lean on. Mom will do nothing - she is always complaining she is tired and she goes no where but the hairdressers. I make a list literally every day just to keep track what I need to take care of that day. Some days I just feel like asking what did I deserve to get this?

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Stay strong. I too share some of the same. My dad is now hospice and I an sole caretaker. It is lonely. But u r not alone.

Thank you Ererishlass... I will look into the book you suggested...

Children are very dependent upon their parents for obvious reasons but as they grow up that dependence lessens as they learn to stand on their own. Elderly parents are different. They depend upon us and that dependence gets worse as time goes by until we feel like we're being strangled. It's not natural.

I cared for my dad in my home for 5 years until he went into a NH. Like you, I had very little outside interests. How could I when my dad was at home waiting for me? He would encourage me to go out but was uncomfortable when I did.

With siblings or other family I'm sure you feel stuck. I KNOW you feel stuck, I could read it in your post. Have you thought about temporary respite? Many facilities offer our elderly loved ones room and board for a certain amount of time while we take a break. Maybe you could look into that.

As for what you did to deserve this, it sounds like you feel you're being punished and I think that's a very normal way to feel. I remember feeling that way too. And if your feelings are so strong it might be a good idea to begin considering other living arrangements for your mom. Since she is able to stay alone while you work would assisted living be a possibility for her?

Learning how to set boundaries is always a good idea especially when someone is unnaturally dependent upon us. It's possible to break that dependence but just like the dependence didn't occur overnight it won't disappear overnight either. I've read books on how to set boundaries when I cared for my dad and they were very helpful. The one I liked the most was simply called, "Boundaries".

See if you can't get your mom to detach a little bit, that might give you some breathing room, and look into assisted living either for a respite or permanently. Your mom's a grownup, not a little kid you have to pacify and stroke.

I hope you come back. This is a great website for caregivers. It was a godsend to me when my dad was alive.

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