Yesterday was so fun! -sarcasm.

My mom's car needed a recall item attended to and an oil change. The dealership is about 40 minutes from her house, but I needed to drive 90 minutes to her house to get her and her car. I encouraged her to stay home with her cats and let me take care of the appointment but she wasn't having it.

The complaints were endless. It's freezing in here. I had to take her outside to sit in the sun. These chairs are so uncomfortable. I took her to another lounge area with comfortable chairs, but there was no TV. So that was a problem. When we were in the main waiting area, she hadn't been happy with what was on. Due to COVID there are no magazine or reading material. That was deemed "stupid". The wait of an hour and 20 minutes was "excruciating". She said she would buy a different car before she ever went there again! Not that she should even still be driving, but she never goes anywhere anyway. She has put 5000 miles on her car in five years, and some of that was my brother using it when he's visiting her, as it gets better mileage than his large SUV. When we got home I filled up her tank and washed the car.

She hated the decor of the dealership. I told her she's lucky no one will make her decorate her house that way.

Mom has a nicely landscaped yard, thanks to yours truly. She can't water it herself, as she can't keep her balance on the grass. I went to four stores to get everything required to set up a sprinkler system. It's on a timer. All she has to do is turn the timer on for the number of minutes she wants and that's it. It will shut itself off. I set it for 60 minutes. She had a fit over "wasting water". I would have let it run for twice that long. Everything is bone dry. I told her, water or dead plants. She said "they won't die"! Well some already have and I've yet to see plants that can live without adequate water. She's not poor. She can afford water.

Everything is poor me, I have no luck, nothing good ever happens. The negativity is so hard to deal with.

There is so much more, but this was just yesterday's adventures.

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I also live with a mother who is a chronic complainer. She refuses to do things for herself and I moved in with her 10 years ago because she got herself so over medicated she couldn't function. She complains so much about every ache and pain it is very difficult to tell what is real and what is not and she will immediately jump to the worst case scenario (it's not just a sneeze, it's the corona virus). She is very dramatic. It is exhausting, but I do my best to claim at least an hour a day free from the drama. It does no good to talk to her about it.
Report was like you spent the day with my late grandmother. husband is 71 and one of those that has to complain non stop. You are right it is utterly exhausting. Sometimes I just yell at him...Is there anything good in your life? The thing is he has a great life....has his health, just retired, enough money to live on, a wife that is 20 years younger...seriously what is he complaining about?

It's not just woman that act this way. My almost 73 year husband complains ALL the time, about everything. It can be very exhausting. Now in his defense he is completely bedridden and has vascular dementia. Perhaps if I had to lay in the bed all day and do nothing but watch TV, I would complain too, But as his sole caregiver who does the best I can, it's very hard to be around someone like that. My mother was like that as well, and that kept me away for many years. I often tell my husband that he is worse than my mom(and that is saying a whole lot). We live in a fairly small home and when he gets on my last nerve, I just escape to my bedroom for as long as I can, and of course I get out too, just to get a break from his negativity. Sadly for people like this it's all about them. They don't really have empathy for others.

I feel for you. Sounds like you may have to distance yourself more from your mom, for your mental health's sake. You can still care for her from afar. Please take care of yourself.

Maybe remind her of all the people for whom she has to be grateful, and all the blessings in her life. Pour on an attitude of gratitude when she starts complaining. Example: "Mom, be grateful that you have money to pay for water for your plants."

Cantdance your insight is like you know my mom!! Much appreciated.

She can't drive herself to the dealership. She would never be able to find it on her own. She has always been "directionally impaired". Before her husband died in 2009, they bought a GPS unit. It was $800 and very difficult to use, even for me. This was long before you could just ask Siri for directions. Not that she could manage that now anyway. She should not be driving AT ALL. She lives in a very small town. No Uber or taxis. Her muscle memory allows short trips to the grocery store and hairdresser.

I would love for her to move into AL. I checked into some very nice places near me, thinking it would be great for her to try it on a trial basis over the winter. Otherwise she is completely isolated all winter. With the weather we get, if something were to happen, it may be on a day when travel is at least dangerous, if not impossible. She adamantly said NO, before even knowing the cost, which would be HELL NO.

I am going to reschedule her geriatrician appointment that was canceled due to COVID. They are finally seeing patients again. My brother and SIL will arrange to be here and go with her. If my brother the golden child wants her to go, she is more likely to agree. I'm not dissing my brother. He is a saint. Always her favorite, which isn't his fault.


I say this with love, you will never make your mother happy. These women are just unhappy with their lives, with their situation, with themselves. You are not responsible for making anybody happy; in fact, we are responsible for making ourselves happy and that's it.

With my own mother, I stop jumping through her hoops because I came to realize that nothing I do will make her happy or love me; so why bother!? Her complaints fall on deaf ears. Thanks to the people on this forum and my therapist.


I work in my yard all the time as well! My neighbors wonder why we have the best looking grass in the neighborhood. Actually, one of my neighbors asked me "what was my secret," I told him, "just have a mother with dementia and you'll have a great looking yard too!" He looked confused, but I couldn't resist!


Maybe these women were "The Silent Generation" and they got tired of being silent; so now, we the Adult Kids have to hear all about it! Lol!!


I'm with you, I would rather be aloof then be around a bunch of toxics negative people...

bolliveb, You are loving daughter to want to help your mom, but your efforts fall short of your mom's expectations. Apparently your mom drives since you said she put 5K miles on her car(well, at least part of it). So why does your mom need you to pick her up to take the car to the dealership? If she's capable of putting that kind of miles on her car, can't she take it in for the recall herself? Sound like she needs you as a go-along to complain to and blame for everything.

Your mom lets you knock yourself out to maintain her yard. If she doesn't want to spend the money for watering the plants, let the plants die. If your mom is physically incapable of caring for her own yard, refer her to local yard maintenance services. She will complain, of course, because she won't want to spend the money. She wants to obstruct and malign your efforts while you do it for free.

Why does she do this? I don't know. I call it toxic negativity.

Your mom may be a candidate for an assisted living arrangement. Many seniors want their children to prop the illusion that they're capable of "independent" living, when in fact their child or children are struggling with their own health issues, an aging spouse with problems, and/or children at home. You may have to put your foot down with your mom. She either pays for services so she can continue to live in her own home, or you will help her find a suitable assisted living facility. It's all about boundaries, bolliveb. You matter, too!

My mom is also a chronic complainer. Ugh, it's so darn annoying. Makes me steer as clear of her as I can, considering she lives with me. I go out, I work like crazy in my yard, etc. etc. Some crap over and over and over. Well, actually, new situation, like yours, do elicit a new round of complaints. My head wants to explode but I won't let it.

I wonder what makes these women think they have to be happy & comfortable 24/7? And that someone else should be responsible for MAKING them happy & comfortable 24/7? And that they MUST be vocal about everything they find to be imperfect in their life? Funny, too, how they're known as The Silent Generation but so many of them are anything BUT silent, for crying out loud.

I feel your pain as I have one of Those Mothers too. But mine lives in Memory Care and pays others to take care of her every need these days.

Good luck!

Yes, much fun to live with. My hubs mother is the same. Everything is a "tragedy"

I just avoid her and it. I never participate in hub's family events. They all think I'm aloof. Well so be it. I'd rather be considered aloof than put up with all that B.S. I justify it to myself by remembering that it's unhealthy to be around negativity. It's toxic and that's that.

OMG! You have my sympathy. Yay you for living to tell the tale!

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