I found this forum today, after another dramatic day with my mother and it has made me feel a lot less lonely.

My 76 year old mom lives with me. She is beginning with signs of dementia although she is still pretty self sufficient. She is the most negative person I have ever known. She has alienated my siblings and any friends that she had left.

She is critical of everything and everyone. Today, first thing this morning, I get greeted with how much she hates my cat and wants to get rid of him because she didn’t shut a cabinet door all the way and he pulled out paperwork she had in there. I reminded her that it was my house and my cat and she literally had a tantrum.

Although she could do light housework she doesn’t. She sits and watches tv all day. Then when the weekend comes and I’m running around getting things done she says I’m doing it either to make her feel bad or that I’m bipolar (that’s one of the newer accusations). Everything has to be about her. She takes no interest in anything going on in my life.

I bought a new trash can for my kitchen and she says I have no idea how to handle my money and I’m too frivolous. I had a few friends over one evening this summer for a bbq and around 9:30 she calls out the window that it’s getting late and they should go home. I was mortified. I’m 46 years old and it’s my home and I feel trapped.

She is diabetic and when she gets really mad at me she will eat very little causing her blood sugar to drop very low and I think it’s just to get me to feel sorry for her.

I gently suggested a few months ago that maybe we could find her an apartment in a senior building and it went very badly. Apparently I was ‘throwing her to the curb like trash’.

I love my mother but there are times that I feel real hatred toward her. I feel like I do not have my own life. I hate living in my own home.

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You mentioned in the reply attending therapy? I found therapy helped me. After what started as a vent, turned into seeing what I was angry/resentful about. Then how I could change things.

Like floating along then realising you do have oars & can steer.

Toe, seems you gave your Mother a wonderful 5 year gift: to help her adjust to saying goodbye to her home with steps, to downsize. Adjust from Independent to somewhat Less Independant.

The new gift may be to offer support while she adjusts again for the next stage.

This may be to an independent senior apartment or assisted living. Plan for the next step too by having somewhere with attached services & ability to add home help as requied.

Having a good medical, inc memory test & needs assessment may shine the way forward for the best living arrangement for Mom.
Coz what you DON'T want is what I call The Magic Doll's House, or another poster called The Enchanted Cottage. Where Mom lives separate but you spend most waking hours at her beck & call providing all the assistance.

I kind of feel the vibe of that danger lurking.. it can eat your life up.

I have to ask..Why did you move mom in with you? Time to look for Memory Care or at least Assisted Living for mom.
Or an apartment as you suggested.
Sure she will vent, she will be angry. Let her vent, let her be angry.
She will get used to living in an apartment or AL or if necessary Memory Care.
You will have your house back. You will feel like the independent adult you are.
You are not responsible for her health. Particularly when it almost sounds like she knows exactly what she can do to "push your buttons" To use an old phrase...Ya know how fish don't get caught?...they don't take the bait)

One thing to remember is that you are not responsible for your mother’s diabetes. If she deliberately makes it worse and ends up in hospital, it’s a very clear reason for her to go to an appropriate institution.

Thank you for your response! She sold her home about 5 years ago because the steps to get into the house were too much for her. That is when she moved in with me. It was okay at first but as time progresses and her mental health declines it’s getting harder and harder. I think these Covid times have kicked things up a notch too.
I know I just have to work myself up to be more firm with her. I’ve finally decided to start seeing a therapist to help me work that out!

Hi Amy & welcome to the forum!

I'm sorry you are going through this with your mother. Why did you move her in with you, if I may ask? My mother has always been a very negative individual as well which made me decide to NEVER move her in with me decades ago. So when I had to move both parents near me in 2011 after dad had to stop driving, I set them up in a senior apartment bldg in Independent Living. I still did a ton FOR them, it was just not inside my home; they had their place, and my DH & I had ours. Then, after dad fell & broke his hip, I had to get them both into Assisted Living in 2014; dad passed in 2015 and mom stayed on in the same AL. It was a good thing, too, b/c she was diagnosed with progressive dementia in 2016. She became even more negative & miserable in general, so I was VERY relieved that she was in AL and not living with me. We were able to maintain our relationship intact that way, vs. me having a ton of resentment and hating my life in my own home, as you are feeling now.

Mom is now 95 and living in Memory Care AL, wheelchair bound and incontinent. She has WAY too many issues to live anywhere BUT in managed care, so she's where she belongs, and very well cared for by the staff and visited by myself & my DH frequently. Her dementia has progressed to the point where she's delusional almost all of the time, so she thinks she's living in a hotel and going out to different restaurants and entertainment centers on a daily basis, so that keeps her happy, thankfully.

You have to figure out how to get your mom into her OWN place now, preferably in Assisted Living that also has a continuum of care so she can segue into Memory Care when the time comes. You tell her that you love her very much, but that you need your house back, it's not working out for EITHER one of you to be living together. Period. She'll rant & rave but in the end, you're doing this to save your own sanity. She is manipulative and trying to guilt you into feeling pity for her by eating too little, etc, and that will only lead to you feeling MORE resentment and having the relationship suffer irreparable damage as well. Save it while you still can, that's my suggestion. Let the staff in AL take care of her and deal with her tantrums as well; you can go visit her and spend some quality time together instead of this 24/7 situation going on now. If she accuses you of 'throwing her to the curb like trash', so be it. She'll get over it once she acclimates to AL. If you wind up hating her by keeping her in your home, who wins then? Neither one of you. You're better off having her angry NOW than having a horrible relationship for the rest of your lives.

Here is a useful article on dementia called Understanding The Dementia Experience by Jennifer Ghent-Fuller; it's a 33 page booklet which is a free download:

It will help you understand what is going on in HER head nowadays, and how you can deal with her in a more useful manner.

Wishing you the best of luck dealing with a difficult situation. I hope you agree to take care of YOURSELF now as well as your mother b/c there are TWO lives here that matter!

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