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I just have to vent today. I am an only child who had to move my folks out here to Independent Living in Colorado from Florida back in 2011 when Dad couldn't drive anymore. Got them placed in Assisted Living in 2014 after Dad fell & broke his hip; he passed in 2015. Mother is still alive at almost 93 and now living in the Memory Care building of the same AL they'd lived in since 2015. She is glad Dad died b/c he was never the husband she wanted or needed anyway, so Good Riddance to him. She had to move there after a bout with pneumonia in May which landed her in a wheelchair needing A LOT of help, more than AL could offer, and after her dementia had progressed to a moderate level. She is still pretty lucid, however, and in much better mental condition than most of the other 23 residents in Memory Care.


Mother has always been very difficult to deal with. In fact, when I heard about Dad's car accidents in 2011 and knew I had to move them here, I cried on my new husband's shoulder. We were married in 2009, have 7 children between us, and his parents are long gone. He could NOT understand why I would be crying over having my parents living back near me (my mother, NOT my father was who I was crying about).


Now he understands 100% why I was crying and has probably done some crying of his own when I wasn't looking.


All my mother does is complain. No matter how much is done for her, it's just never enough. She received 4 phone calls *that we know of* on Thanksgiving alone and said Big Deal when I remarked how nice it was that she got a lot of calls. "No I didn't" she said. Ok, I replied, because arguing gets me exactly NOWHERE. "Well don't get HUFFY" she said, to which I replied I wasn't. "When people call for TWO MINUTES it's like they didn't even call." So the calls she DID get weren't long enough, so they didn't count. She hates the two nieces that called her, and threw in that she'd be better off if neither of them EVER bothered calling her again.


She hates her neighbors at the MC. They're all 'idiots and morons' and she wishes some of them would die. One of them DID die a few days ago, now she's complaining about who might come in her place..............that person might be even WORSE. Most of the residents are DEAF, don't you know? It matters not that mother is 80% deaf herself and refuses to wear hearing aids. She finds it VERY annoying when SHE has to raise her voice to be heard. When I have to raise MY voice for her to hear me, I'm 'yelling'.


Yesterday I worked a typical 12 hour shift which left me with a typical headache. I called her on the way home and she was in a very foul mood, as usual. I should add that DH and I had gone to see her on Saturday, bringing over homemade manicotti, 2 bras that she 'needed b/c the others were stolen by the staff', and a HUGE box of Russel Stover chocolates. So.......last night, she says she may have looked fine on Saturday when we saw her, but 'people look fine one day and they're DEAD the next'. She's been 'threatening' to die now for several years. I told her I was sorry she wasn't feeling well, even though she refused to say *as usual* WHAT it was that she felt. She then went on to start crying saying she's 'soooooooooo lonely like a dawg in this room all alone all day'. I suggested she leave her room and join the activities in the main hall, to which she replied 'Yeah Okay Thanks, I knew I shouldn't have bothered you with MY problems.'


I'm sick and I'm tired. I'm 62 years old and every single day of my life my mother makes me feel like I'm doing something wrong. Like I should feel guilty for being alive. Like I should feel responsible for her LIFE, her social calendar, her entertainment, her misery, the fact that she's in a wheelchair which is also my fault b/c I didn't force her to walk again in rehab after bad neuropathy SHOULD have put her in a wheelchair 5 years ago.


Can anyone relate? What is YOUR "I can't cope anymore" story?

CantDance, you are to funny! LOL!
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CantDance YES ha ha ha

Or move to a treehouse...
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Too funny, can’t dance! 🤣😂😆
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If my mom lived with me, I'd go walkabout alone in Siberia where the polar bears live, with no GPS. Barefoot and wearing a flimsy nightgown. With a pork chop tied around my neck.
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This forum is helping me so much! Thank you. I am determined to stay strong. She just drains me so much.
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Dpwwin........BlackHole has spot on advice! Stay strong.......No is a complete sentence! There's no room at the inn for mother, keep repeating that and don't back down! If my mother lived with me I'd literally SHOOT myself!
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After I placed my father in MC, I stopped by and used the cameras to confirm he was doing well without making contact. My only contact with Dad was a 1-2 hours on Sunday afternoon. Dad was safe and well cared for in the MC. If he wanted something reasonable, I made the effort to provide it, but I seldom indulged his complaining rants as I had somewhere to be doing something worthwhile. I suggest you reduce your contact too. You cannot make Mom happy, she has to reach for the activities possible in the MC. Please do not let her make you miserable.
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Thank you! I hope I can stay firm she is quite manipulative and not always honest.
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dpwwin - Your mother needs to stay in the retirement facility. No ifs, ands or buts. You did your part.

And no, you are not abandoning Mom. Her needs are met. And her wants do not supersede your needs.

You are experiencing first-hand the healing and improvement of removing this friction from YOUR home. Keep it this way.

(((big hugs))) and NO guilt!

Keep coming back to AC Forum for support. We’re here for you.
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I am so glad I found this site! I was feeling so alone. My mom called me over 9 years ago and told me that she and my Dad were coming to live with me. S
They lived in a different state. I did not mind because I am a nurse and my dad was ill(he was 90) he passed away about 10 months later and I do not regret that time of caring for him but I saw how little my mom would do for him.my youngest son was still living at home and he would help me clean up my dad etc. While she watched TV. My mother alienated my children and multiple other issues.We recently moved to Colorado and since my home isn't ready yet she is staying at a retirement center while I am at a weekly place. She is determined to move back in with me but I dont think I can take it anymore.
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Cantdance...........this is true. I often question the point in trying to please someone who's never satisfied no matter what.

I have noticed that our evening phone calls are getting shorter & shorter b/c she seems to be in a hurry to hang up. Which is FINE with me......LOL! Checking in every day leaves one with very little to say!
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Lealonnie,

You said your mom's dementia hadn't progressed to the point that she'd fail to notice a reduction of visits or calls. So what? She won't be happy no matter how often you call or visit!

Just sayin'.
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Cantdance,

Thank you! I had to laugh at your fantasies. Although, I will have to say, when I use to take my mother to Lake Michigan I did fantasize about putting her on a raft and let the current carry her across the lake to another state. Also where we camp there are sand dunes that are 40 to 50 stories high. I have fantasized about burying her there. But of course, I would never do it!
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CantDance.........well, I go to the MC about once a WEEK, that's all. If that. If she's in a super rotten frame of mind, I'll put it off and go about once every 10 or 12 days. So it's not that 'much' but it's enough, apparently, to wear me out! It's really the daily check in calls that add to my stress b/c there is always SOME drama she feels the need to relay to me. So, add the daily calls to the weekly visit and you have 8 contacts per week, which is a bit much, I agree. My 2 kids stay away, for the most part (from her), and she has nobody else, so the FOG keeps me acting like the turkey on the platter! Gotta love that image, let me tell you!

My husband says what you say; she thrives on making me sick; zinging me, keeping me off balance all the time. Yet I feel obligated to 'care' for her but then I'm not so pleasant when I AM 'caring' for her. It's a real chit-show, truthfully. Thing is, her dementia is NOT that far progressed; she is very forgetful but pretty lucid still. She will never forget if I go over or don't go over, so that's part of the issue too.
I do appreciate you taking the time to talk to me.........I really can use the advice.
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Lealonnie,

Here I am. Back again after re-reading your "venting" story.

For the life of me, I don't know why you spend so much time with your mother. Her ingratitude and negativity are toxic. Dementia or no dementia, you aren't responsible for her life's choices or her happiness. It's obvious she thrives on making you sick.

I know you didn't ask for advice. But you're getting it anyway! Dial it back, friend, waaaay back! You don't have to offer yourself like a turkey on a platter. Your health and peace of mind are not your mom's to destroy! Care for yourself enough to stop going to memory care so much! I go see my mom once a month and that's enough to make me depressed and anxious for days! I'd have to be a masochist to call her on the phone. Who wants to listen to nonstop bile for an hour?!

If her dementia is advanced as my mom's, she won't know the difference anyway, whether you visit once a day or once a month! You have a demanding job and a family that loves and needs you. Save your precious energy for yourself and people who'll appreciate it. Memory care will inform you of your mother's genuine needs.

Shell said it well: "My mother took the first half of my life; she isn't taking the rest of it." You go, girl!!!

We are not called to sacrifice everything. It grieves me to see a loving son or daughter ground underfoot by bitter, insatiable parents. We all deserve better. (((Hugs)))
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Grammaof9......my mother is never complaining or negative.......she is JUST TALKING, dontcha know? I like the Negative Nelly reference....forces them to acknowledge their nasty words!

Shell.....you are probably right about me being tired from all the MIND CLUTTER which is hard to silence. Not sure how much therapy my insurance covers.....I'm always open to new ideas and willing to try anything for relief.

Elaine....calls at 430am? That's balls. And knowing she will have diarrhea the next day.....sounds like the excuses my mother comes up with. Drafts? Has she ever heard of those long fabric draft stoppers you put in front of the door?? Nah......much better to build a BARRICADE out of trash, huh? Sigh. Your mother wins the prize, I think, for kook of the decade.
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Your mom sounds exactly like mine!!! I started calling her negative Nelly, she asked what that meant and I told her, she was sooo mad and said no. So every time she starts in I say ok Negative Nelly. Calms her down a little.
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Lealonnie1,

All this head filling of mothers stuff is a good reason to do other things to get ourselves out of our head. I think doing your projects will help with that. Give you a way of thinking of something else. And if I may suggest or ask "what about seeing a therapist?" That is what I did. I had just 40+ yrs of junk in my head over my mother to go through and I came to realize I couldn't do it alone. Furthermore, Barb once posted how kids like us got program at an early age and getting deprogram is very hard. But I decided right then and there I was going to get the help to learn how to not be at my mother's beck and call! It took me almost a year to get to this place. And don't get me wrong this forum helped me just as much as therapy did.

I think this is why you are so tired all the time because if you are not talking to your mother then you are thinking about her...what she did...what she didn't do...what will she do next...will this ever end...and on and on...It is exhausting! I know I was tired and well, not a nice person to be around! My mother was a fun snatcher and she was good at it! But not anymore!

You deserve so much more...you have a right to have your own life...to have peace...and rest...and fun!

I really believe these mothers want to dominate our whole lives, in fact, they want to suck the life out of us! Whether they know what they are doing or not-doesn't matter. All I can say, is my mother took the first half of my life, she isn't taking the rest of it.

Just food for thought.

I am glad you and Beatty liked my line:)
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Continue from my last two posts, I just got home from work. In addition to my mother having diarrhea, she said she doesn’t want me to come over today because she has the door barricaded with empty boxes and bags. She doesn’t want a DRAFT coming in through the door. She’s always been exceptionally nutty when it comes to a DRAFT!!! I use to think this was normal behavior until I tell my husband or my kids or the girls at work. They all look at me with shock and disbelief!!!! Ya just can’t make this stuff up!!!!
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Yeah, she left me a voicemail just now. Don’t come over tomorrow I have diarrhea!!! It’s probably from all the vegetables I have been eating she said!!! I’m going to bed now she says!!! It’s 4:30 am and she is just going to bed!!!!!!!!!
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lealonnie you summed it up perfectly!!! A hoard in our heads!! It is 4:22am here and I am on break at work. I work the overnight shift, AND MY MOTHER JUST CALLED!! I let it ring and she either hung up or it went to voicemail. She calls me at work regularly just to whine and complain!! I didn’t dare answer the phone!! She might have been drinking and then she really gets nasty!!!!
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Shell.....thats what is bothering me.....my head space is full of mama drama......62 years worth of it! Not an inch of space left for ANYTHING else these days. Elaine.....theres a HOARD in my HEAD! Thats what it feels like. I'm glad I was able to explain it, and sorry at the same time because nobody should have to go thru this.

Beatty....Shells line IS gold, isn't it? Love it!
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I was thinking how cutting back phone calls & visits may help but it's exactuly like what Lealeonnie said :  "what others do not realize is how much head space these women consume".

Shell:  "Now, if she isn't bleeding, blue, or on fire I just go on with my life. I had to learn and am still learning that not everything she says or does needs my attention".

This is GOLD.

This is how to keep more head space for you! As I see it you are there for emergencies, but Mother's day to day emotional stuff is (rightly) returned to Mother.
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Lealonnie1

I was reading the posts and your replies and one of them stuck out to me. You wrote to Elaine about how "what others do not realize is how much head space these women consume. They create so many issues and so much drama that we're force to deal with..." OMG! That is my mother. I have tried to explain to my very understanding SO and he never understood how my head would get full of my mother because I had to be prepare for what is she going to do now? What is the next thing she is going to do? Now, after her spending thousands of dollars that she didn't have (and of course, I found the lawyer, figure out how she could pay for it, and drove her to meet the lawyer and made sure he had all the paperwork and finally got her to court,) he gets it! Even though I paid the house insurance, the taxes, most of the bills, household products, and did a crap load of repairs on the house because my mother was spending her money on my brother and herself that she had no money for all the things above and guess what she tells me all the time? That I don't do anything! That is what she believes. I don't take her to the Drs appts. I don't take her to the store. I don't pay her bills, the house bills, and my and my SO bills. I don't fixes the leak in the pipes. I don't cook and clean. I don't take care of her cats and my cats. I don't work on top of the many things I do because as you know the list goes on and on. But according to her-I don't do anything!

I just want to thank you because I really thought I was alone! With the whole one thing after another momma drama! Now, if she isn't bleeding, blue, or on fire I just go on with my life. I had to learn and am still learning that not everything she says or does needs my attention. She no longer drives and I take care of her bills and funds. She is clean, fed, and she has a roof over her head and that is all that matters, and whatever happens next I will deal with it at that time. I hope:/

I just really wanted to thank you for sharing.
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CantDance......thanks for the laugh! I think I WILL borrow a few of those myself!
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Lealonnie,

Vent all you want. I get it. Everyone here already knows about my terrible relationship with my mom. All the gory details. I won't repeat.

I have fantasized all my life about running away from Mom.....as a child, as a teen, as an adult. So I wouldn't have to hear the negativity, the FOG, whining, and complaining!

I have fantasized about putting her on an iceberg and shoving her out to sea!
Leaving her on someone's doorstep, ringing the bell, and running away!
Leaving her on a bench at the train station, bus stop, airport. And running away!
Locking her in the trunk of my car. Abandoning the car.
Tying her to the saddle on a horse and smacking the horse so he'll run, run, run!
Locking her in the attic. With a gag.
Stowing her away on a freighter to China.

I would never actually do these things. But I fantasize sometimes, like a pressure valve. I get a good laugh.

Feel free to borrow any time!
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Upstream, I know what your folks have put you through the past bunch of years and you have my sympathy, that's for sure. Sending you a hug and wishing both of us the strength to persevere through this.

Countrymouse..........I'm wondering WHY you would 'love this personality type' when there is literally nothing at all TO love, or lovable, about someone who complains 24/7 and makes others' lives a true nightmare. Perhaps it's 'fun' to watch from afar, but dealing with it up close & personal is something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy, if I had one.

I do realize none of this is 'my fault', however, dealing with this all the time, and being the only one to do so, is exhausting and I'm tired. REALLY really really tired and truly burned out to the core, actually. But thank you for your kind words, I do appreciate them.
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My mom gave up at 70. Yes, she has shown me the opposite of growing old gracefully! I've aired my family situation all over this forum so I won't rehash the details here. I'm an only child and the extreme pressure she has put on me to be responsible for her happiness and well-being is suffocating. I fantasize about running away - locking up my cell phone in the mailbox so I cannot be tracked and just taking off. Really, I cannot leave my business, home, husband, pets, etc. She's 77 now and is more like a 90+ year old, can no longer really walk, has no friends, terrible attitude, nasty in public, etc. It's so incredibly unfair.
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Um. It's just this bit: "every single day of my life my mother makes me feel like I'm doing something wrong."

You know it's not your fault your mother's personality* is as it is, right? Not your fault she's alone in her room and doesn't like the alternatives. Not your fault she's ill and old. Not your fault she looks back and fails to see anything to be contented with.

I think you might get some relief from trying a bit less hard. E.g., if you have a headache and you're just ending a long shift, then DON'T call your mother, not then! Do it after you've had a rest and something to eat. Stop hoping she'll like the presents you and your husband spend time and care and money on choosing - get her presents, by all means, if they're useful or beautiful and appropriate; but crush that flickering internal hope that *this* time she'll be thrilled, and she'll say so.

Put yourself and your husband first; relegate your mother, who is in safe hands and will be FINE, to the time and energy you have to spare.

* I happen to love this personality type when it doesn't belong to my blood relative. If you're going to be difficult, be gloriously, shamelessly difficult!

PS, about her behaviour in the facility and out-and-about. STOP feeling responsible for her, or you'll end up like my poor, noble BIL who called a meeting at the end of his mother's respite stay to apologise in person to all of the staff. You cannot be held responsible for things over which you have no power.
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Dear Elaine; I can't tell you how many times my mother pitched a huge hissy fit at the store insisting she was 'gypped' and demanding her money back! In fact, she was the queen of returns...........she'd buy things and bring them back CONTINUOUSLY, to the point of insanity. Having no decision making ability, she'd buy something impulsively, rethink it, then return it. Poor dad had to drive her back & forth to the stores all the time, but he agreed to the insanity.

As far as 'talking too much about our mothers' is concerned, what others DO NOT realize is the HEAD SPACE these women consume!!! They create SO many issues and SO much drama that we're forced to deal with, that we become consumed with what's coming next. Because it's ALWAYS something; it's designed that way. The others who don't understand don't understand because WE are doing ALL the grunt work and THEY are going about their lives w/o all the daily BS to contend with.

As far as secrecy is concerned, OMG, I thought my mother was the only one! ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING is a secret! If a relative calls to ask what's going on, WHY is it her business what I'm doing? If someone asks what she did for Christmas? Same thing.........they're 'grilling her' and snooping and 'giving her the third degree because they're jealous'. Yeah, that's it. Who wouldn't be jealous of a 93 y/o woman in a wheelchair living in Memory Care? Sigh. I do believe the old saying of "We're only as sick as the secrets we keep". If everything is a secret, there is NO trust for ANYONE.
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