I have been taking care of my disabled mother for 6 years now. I have lost jobs taking care of her and had to postpone school on top of being a single mother. I finally managed to graduate with my master's degree and I am currently working. I have been managing the bills with her money and sometimes mine. I make sure she gets to doctor's appointments, hair appointments, get the clothes she needs and has transportation to places she wants to go. Of course this was easier before covid, but now she is somewhat stuck in the home. I still make sure she takes her medications on time, sees the doctor, has food, etc. We had a verbal agreement 6 years ago that I could live in her home with my daughter if I took care of her. I was never really asked to contribute to the home but I do. I clean the entire house on top of paying a few bills here and there. I make sure the grass is cut, her home is taken care of, the car is paid off and taken care of....but I still feel like I am not doing enough. Every time I try to talk to her about how tired I feel and how she hurts me, she turns it back on me and blames me for everything. She has told me to get out of her house numerous times over the years, then she comes back to me and says she needs me. I feel like I am on a roller coaster and nothing has changed since my childhood. I was never really close to her because she hurt me so much growing up, and now I am having to take care of her. There were times she has almost died and I was there for her. Every time she has a seizure I take care of her. I made sure she got life alert and got alarms and cameras put in the home through her insurance and doctor's advice, but it is never enough. She says things to me that make me feel like a bad daughter and a bad mother to my own daughter. I continue to take care of her, but I feel like I just have to absorb everything she says to me and suck it up because she is my mom and needs help. She constantly threatens to kick me out and then calls her friends to talk trash about me, even her pastor. She says all these mean things about me but then says she needs me. She tells me without me she wouldn't have this and that, but then there are times where she demands I just put her in a nursing home and get out. She locks herself in her room at times and says she is afraid of me when I get upset. Sometimes I get so upset I yell at her and then I feel bad because it takes me back to when I was a child and I felt small. Then I feel bad for yelling in her home. I feel out of control sometimes because I do not know what to do with my feelings and I just end up crying or shouting at her to leave me alone. I feel like maybe I really am a bad caregiver to her and a bad daughter and this is why we were never close. I feel like she deserves someone better to take care of her and I have been doing such a bad job for these 6 years. It makes me feel so worthless and angry because I have given up parts of my life at times to be there for her. I feel like a horrible person and like I need to do more or do better. Then on top of that I feel horrible for not having enough money saved up to leave because my jobs have been so inconsistent when taking care of her. I finally got a stable job, but I am just now able to start saving and I am constantly being told to leave. She talks to me like it is always my fault and I am starting to think everything really is my fault. I have no one to talk to about it. I don't have anyone around me I can really trust. I tried to talk to my dad about it but he says just ignore it, or thinks I am being dramatic, so then I think I am just being dramatic and stupid. I say that I am thankful for her and having a place to live daily because I thought maybe I was being stupid to complain about what is going on. I'm not the disabled one and I feel so angry towards my mom. I care about her a lot, but I feel like I am worthless and not doing enough. I feel like a horrible person to her and my child and in general.

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If you read your post carefully, you will see that you already know the answer to your questions. Your mother neither likes nor respects you. “She constantly threatens to kick me out and then calls her friends to talk trash about me, even her pastor. She says all these mean things about me.” However she needs you to live the way she is living now, which she thinks is her best option. “She has told me to get out of her house numerous times over the years, then she comes back to me and says she needs me.” Sure thing, at least she’s for real about wanting to keep you where you are!

She was not very loving to you as a child, and you are still looking unsuccessfully for love and acceptance. “Nothing has changed since my childhood. I was never really close to her because she hurt me so much growing up.” You feel dreadful, but you can’t see how to escape. “I feel like I am worthless.” Your father doesn’t understand because he wasn’t her child – and probably he has only coped by ignoring things that you can’t ignore.

Your mother will certainly find a way to cope if you leave. You are not responsible for her. If you are only 29, she could quite probably earn her own living, even with a disability. Why isn't your father responsible anyway? A live-in carer is worth thousands of dollars a year, while you aren’t getting paid and in fact are paying for many household expenses yourself. At least stop using your own money while you save just as fast as you can. Look for cheap housing options immediately.

You need to respect yourself, and show yourself to your daughter as a strong and brave adult. Therapy may be helpful, but what you really need is to get out.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to MargaretMcKen
NeedHelpWithMom Oct 19, 2020
This is true. I feel like many negative people have always been negative.

Positive people remain positive even in their senior years.
Sounds like mental abuse, for sure. When you save enough, just go. Give her time for other caregiving arrangements. Things don't change, besides getting worse.
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Reply to DianneKK


My heart breaks for you. You are entirely too young to be in this position. I am thrilled that you are going for therapy. It will help. Give it time. Talk to them. Listen to your therapist openly. They have heard it all before! They won’t judge you. . You will start seeing positive results.

Thanks for responding to my posting. It explains your situation further to me.

You got roped into this situation simply by growing up in your family.

You sound very smart to me. You sound extremely loving and kind. I would be proud to have you as my daughter.

Yes, sell any surplus items that you don’t need. My daughter has sold items on eBay. If you aren’t using it, let it go to make some money. I am sorry that you were unable to get paid for your caregiving. I can understand your way of thinking that you had to contribute to her bills to protect yourself. It is scary to be homeless.

Do start looking for new housing. Share bills with a roommate if you have to. Be selective about this person because you have a child.

Look into resources to help your mom. It isn’t wise to pay for your mom’s expenses. You will not be able to save for your own future which also includes raising your child.

I bet that you are a fantastic mom. Your mom has no right to be criticizing your parenting. I am sure that hurt you.

For the record, all parents have made mistakes, just like all children do. No one is perfect! Your mom is the pot calling the kettle black!

As long as you are doing your best with your child things will be fine. Your daughter knows that you work hard and love her. She doesn’t expect perfection.

I am glad that your daughter has a good relationship with your mom.

My daughters adore my mom and she adores them. I never interfered in their relationship.

I had no intention of robbing my children of their grandmother or her of their grandchildren.

They had no issues with her. She treated them with kindness.

Sometimes my mom’s perfectionist ways seeped through with my children and I had to nip it in the bud. I spoke to mom privately when it occurred.

If my children would have been a target as I was with mom I would have put a stop to it immediately.

I think that you are on your way to a bright and happy future! Your hard work will pay off. You will get those loans paid. We all do! It takes time.

Your daughter will grow up in a peaceful home. That is worth it’s weight in gold. You will be content in life. You deserve your own life.

Take care. Keep us posted. We support you.
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Reply to NeedHelpWithMom

No, you are not a bad mom or daughter. You're in an untenable situation and you need to get out, for the sake of your daughter.

She will grow up to resent Granny, it's almost inevitable, as you spin your wheels trying to make her happy. And you can't.

How old is mom? She can't be much older than 70 at the most--probably younger.

My mother has lived with my YB for 22 years. The last vacation the family took was over 10 years ago and they took mother with them. She has become 100% dependent on them for everything. It's sad, as the 4 girls won't leave the house, and at ages 21-33, all 4 of them should be on their own. GUILT about leaving Grandma keeps them tied to the house.

It's sick and wrong, but I no longer say a word.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Midkid58

Bellisima you are not responsible to pay for your mom. You are responsible for your daughter 1st and yourself. You sound like you have been brainwashed by your mom. If you only try harder, if you only work harder, if you only.....I would love you. Girlfriend, you need to step back and not own her narcissistic bull. She isn't going to feel any differently no matter how fast or hard you dance, there is never enough for them, so give it up.

It should be a mutually beneficial set up, she is disabled and needs help, you are a single mom and need help, win-win. That is not how it is working out, so time to change what you are doing.

I am going to discourage you from not paying for things. If you can't pay your way at her house you will not be able to make it on your own. Regardless, you and your daughter live there for now and she should not have to bear that financial burden.

Do a budget of all household expenses and calculate the hours that you help her, not doing things that are just normal household chores, but direct care for her, then deduct those hours from what would be your fair share of the bills and food expenses and give her a check for the difference. It is important that you do the right thing financially for the situation. It hasn't worked but, it is not fair to not pay your way, because you have had a roof over your daughter's head because of your mom.

Compile a list of resources for her and give it to her with the contact information and what services they provide. I don't know what the laws are in your state but, you don't want any problems because you just left a vulnerable person on their own, this is one of the consequences that people never think about when they buy into being a live in caregiver.

One step at a time and remember that you have little eyes that are absorbing everything that is going on, make sure she is learning what you want her to.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal

Bellissima, I was going to suggest that you should seek professionally trained help, but looking below at your answer thread I see that you have been already to therapy and that "it always ends abruptly on their end". Could you give me some details on that? How many times have you tried therapy? At what point in time on average do the therapists refuse to treat you further? What reason do they give when they refuse to treat you? Withdrawing treatment is "abandonment" and is very unusual. APA ethics codes are a bit ambiguous as written as to whether a Psychologist is "terminating" or "abandoning", but to have this happen several times is quite odd.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to AlvaDeer

Your mother is a bully, has been emotionally abusing you for YEARS now, and your father is her enabler, minimizing YOUR pain and anguish in an effort to justify why HE has put up with it for so long. That's it in a nutshell, basically. My father, rest his soul, did the same thing with my mother who he enabled for 68 years. He finally found peace when he passed away in 2015.

You don't 'win' with women like this. You just lose more and more of your self-esteem she's chipping away at on a daily basis, as you're seeing, while questioning your own sanity because of all the gaslighting she does. She's making YOU think you're the crazy one when in reality, it's SHE who's off her rocker. That's typical narcissistic type behavior in its ugliest form.

Get out of her house. There is no other way to take back your OWN life and your OWN sanity than to stop believing it's YOUR responsibility to care for this woman, and to make her happy, because it's not. She has a husband who can step up and if not, she can go into Assisted Living like my folks did because I put my foot down from the very beginning that I would not take them into my home (or go into their home) to care for them. Period. Growing up with mommy dearest was MORE than enough. Once I left that looney bin, I was NOT going back, in any way, shape or form.

Ask yourself why you're doing this? Why are you subjecting yourself to the torture your mother feels justified in dishing out? She's using emotional blackmail techniques to keep you feeling guilty and obligated to care for her, 'the poor poor thing.' She 'needs you so badly', then treats you like a piece of dirt under her shoes. Guess what? That's NOT OKAY. Put an end to it NOW.

Even if you feel like you 'deserve' this dreadful treatment, let me tell you right now that your daughter does NOT deserve to live in this environment. Listening to yelling and discord does nothing good for a child. I know, because I WAS that child, growing up in a home with my grandmother who fought like cats and dogs with my mother all the time. It gave me a chronic stomach ache and anxiety which is what led me to make the decision to NEVER take my parents (mostly my mother) into my own home as an adult. It just doesn't work out.

Even if you have to live in a studio apartment, it will be YOUR studio apartment with your daughter. YOU will make the rules and there will be nobody there to tell you you're 'less than' or to make you feel small. You'll be free again, and so will your child. You owe it to yourself and to your daughter to make the break. You CAN do it. Your mother WILL survive because women like this ALWAYS DO. They just make you THINK they can't. But they CAN.

Good luck and Godspeed, my friend. Cheering you on from the sidelines.
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to lealonnie1
NeedHelpWithMom Oct 15, 2020

Her parents are divorced. He is remarried.
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The next time she demands to be put in a nursing home, do it. In fact, find a facility that will take her and have it all set up. She just might be ready to go, but is afraid. She demands to go because she knows that would be the best thing for her and you. It is not abandonment. You will still visit and be her daughter, just not her caregiver. You will still have plenty of other responsibilities. As far as where you and your daughter will live, that can be found if you are working. If she owns her house, the money from it can be used for her care until the money is gone. You would need a lawyer to work out the details of it all, but eventually she might have to apply for medicaid for her care. This round and round feeling of guilt, shame, and being needed at the same time is ruining your life and hers. Please stop it. Make an immediate plan and follow through no matter what your mom says or does about it. Otherwise it will remain the same.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to ArtistDaughter

Sounds like you're stuck between a rock and a hard place. It also sounds like living with her right now makes more sense for you financially, which is too bad , because you really need to move out and make a nice life for you and your daughter. You are NOT a bad person/daughter/mother, just someone who is tired and overwhelmed with your situation. And you also are not required to be your moms caregiver. Yes she needs help, but no where is it written that children are to be there parents caregivers. She has a lot of other options out there for her to get the help she needs.

You grew up in this dysfunction, but now it's time to break that cycle and not allow your precious daughter to have to endure the same. You don't want her growing up thinking that this behavior is normal.

So please save what you can and get out of moms house as soon as you can. You'll be doing yourself and your daughter a huge favor. Best wishes.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to funkygrandma59
bellissimaluna Oct 15, 2020
I am really stressed all the time. I feel like I don't do enough ever. I just want to try harder. I feel like I need to budget better. It's my fault, so I need to figure out a way out. I am going to save as much as I can. I feel guilty not wanting to pay anything in the house now because I need to save more, but I really want to get out. I applied for some assistance this morning. I hope it works out

Listen to me, please. You are not bad! None of this is your fault and you have not failed anything. It isn’t a test. I had the same feelings when I was doing caregiving. We feel as if we need to do more. The truth is that we are already doing more than we should be.

It’s a mind game. I was fortunate that therapy did help me. I had a great therapist. Look again for a person that you gel with.

You have a lot on your plate! You work. Who is caring for your mom while you are working? Your dad is remarried and your mom is no longer his responsibility.

You’re a mom! How old is your daughter? If you don’t mind me asking, how old are you? These are your building years. What about your future with your daughter? It’s costly to raise a child.

It feels like your mom has laid a lot of guilt on you. You have a family now. It’s okay to live your own life.

You can look into nursing different nursing homes. Some are better than others. She will adjust because she has to.

Do not sacrifice your life and your child’s for her. She should not be criticizing your parenting. If you need her advice you can ask her. If you don’t ask, she should not give you unsolicited advice. She’s crossing a line. What is her relationship like with your daughter?

You say that you are contributing to household expenses? Why? She is getting free caregiving. This isn’t a normal roommate arrangement. Has she paid you for caregiving at any time? How long have you been doing this?

Who paid for your university tuition? Did she? If so, was that a loan or a gift? Or a gift with strings?

I am just trying to get a clearer picture. I am glad to hear you say that you want to move.

You deserve to live a fulfilling life. You are setting an example for your daughter. Teach her that you are an independent woman.

Take care. Vent anytime.

I feel for you. I have two daughters. I would never want them to sacrifice their lives for me.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
bellissimaluna Oct 15, 2020
I am going to a walk in clinic for therapy today. I have been staying out of my mom's way today. I applied for other assistance this morning to help me and save some money so I can move. No one cares for my mom while I work. I have cameras in the home and her life alert in case something happens, but it is not alway helpful. I just risk it and go to work so I can have some money. My daughter is 6. I am 29. If I move I want my mom to stay in her house. I don't want her to lose what she worked for. I want to have enough money to afford to get her help and move out. I just need to try harder. My daughter is close to my mom. I contribute to the house because I feel like I should do more and I feel like a loser being this old and not paying anything so I thought I had to help. I also keep getting told I have to leave so I thought if I was paying some bills it would be harder for her to just kick me out without time to find a new place. I don't know. She doesn't pay me. I tried to get paid through social services and we had two interviews but each time I did not qualify. I have been doing this for 6 years and I have student loans I have to pay back. My mother had a loan for me but I got it discharged last month because I told them she was disabled. I didn't want her to have to pay for my school. I hope I get approved for the assistance I applied for because it will make saving easier. I'm even trying to sell some of my things.
What I’m reading into your post is that your mom is terrified you will leave and is being defensive.
What I also wonder is if you are terrified that you will NEVER leave and you want to blame her.
What I want to know is how is your daughter? Is her dad in her life? Is your father filling in?
I think it all sounds “normal”. That you each have issues that probably have not as much to do with the other as it does with the self.
For your daughters sake, find a therapist for each of you. It can make a huge difference in her life and allow you to find peace with your choices. Mom could really benefit. Go for the family plan.
And no. You sound like a woman who has made the best of a tough situation. Your education and enrichment of your life will provide a better future for all four of you. You may have had some hurdles, some bumps in the road, but it appears you are focused. Don’t apologize for that but neither should you forget that mom helped make it happen and your daughters childhood may have been difficult. It’s always said that children are resilient. If that means they don’t just die, well okay but it seems to me that they pick up the tab for all the adults bad behavior. So if there is bad behavior, Stop that. Get refocused on daughter. In the end her success in life will mean everything to you and mom. I’m proud of you.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to 97yroldmom
bellissimaluna Oct 14, 2020
My mom doesn't want therapy. I have been, but it always ends abruptly on their end. I need to find another one you are right. My daughter only has me. I am afraid I will never leave, but I don't blame my mom, it's my fault I didn't have to take care of her, I just thought it made sense at the time. I am trying to save to move, but it is taking longer than expected and my daughter has a lot of services out here she needs that she would lose if I move. My dad does not help with this at all. I feel like it will be better once I save up more. I just recently got this job over the summer. I have to keep trying.
Thank you
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I am exhausted just reading your post.

I truly don’t feel like you should be your mom’s caregiver. It clearly is not working out.

This isn’t a good environment for your daughter.

I am glad that you are saving now. Save more if needed. Then move out.

She’s full of anxiety. You have anxiety. I do have empathy for her due to her disability. Of course she needs help, just not from you.

Have your mom look into other options. Or you can help arrange her new caregiving options. Is your dad living at home? Or are they divorced?

Best wishes to you.

Congrats on the master’s degree and new job!
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to NeedHelpWithMom
bellissimaluna Oct 14, 2020
I'm sorry. He is divorced and lives with his wife. He has his own health issues. I am afraid to have someone else care for her because I don't want her to get hurt. She had to be in a nursing home for 3 months before and do therapy, but I was worried about how they treated her. I don't have anyone else I trust to take over the responsibility. I do want to move out, but then I feel like I am abandoning her. I just want to do better, but I also feel trapped. I feel like I have failed. I had someone in the home before taking care of her but her insurance only covered it for 6 months and my mom didn't like it. Her sister was taking care of her but then she ended up stealing her money and moving away. I am trying to save up now to move out, but I also pay some of the bills so it may take some time.
Thank you
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