I do not want to be my mother's caregiver, am I being selfish?

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My mother has COPD and living independently at the moment. She wants to come live with me when she gets to a point where she can no longer live independently. She has sufficient income and assets to afford assisted living, but would rather live with me and leave those assets to her heirs, which I am one of. I do not wish to take care of her. I would rather she take her assets to use for her care. She will not consider any other options. I do not want to end up a nursemaid to her in my own home. I don't care about the inheritence either. She is a very emotional needy person and only wants to rely on me. Why should I take responsibility for her when she has so many other options? Am I being selfish for wanting to keep my life the way it is?

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"She may just leave ama and have an ambulance bring her home anyway so I am forced to go there. " I figured that everyone expects you to be the caregiver. It's easiest for them (but not you!).

And YOU are the one we're concerned about on this forum. Golden has great advice above. Tell the rehab that they will be discharging her to an unsafe environment. And stand firm.
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raynefrog, not everyone is cut out to be a caregiver, I know I wasn't, but I was good with the logistical stuff.

Here is an excellent article that helped me feel better about not wanting to be a caregiver. https://www.agingcare.com/articles/not-everyone-cut-out-to-be-a-caregiver-162192.htm
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rayne - don't worry about hijacking the thread, though you might get more responses if you start your own. The OP is long gone as far as I know. Your mother needs an evaluation as far as her abilities are concerned. I totally understand about not knowing what is real. Hopefully there will be a discharge plan. Talk to the social worker in the rehab place and stay firm that your mum cannot come to your place, nor can you be her caretaker because of abuse. A psychologist - Pauline Boss recommends that adult children who have been abused do not do hands on caregiving as it is too stressful. Of course your mum expects it. She expects you to be her "servant". I was given that role from childhood in our family.
I have a hard time being with my mother for more than an hour too and feel little guilt about short visits. I am a distance caregiver which is a blessing for me and I only visit a few times a year but am in good contact with the staff where she is so I know how she is doing. if your pcp would be agreeable, get a note that you cannot be a hands on caregiver. I see you can't take her out or a meal at present, so just prepare yourself for her response and leave quickly. Does she have the financial capacity to pay for caregivers?

ALG - my heart goes out to you too. it sounds like you are burnt. Try to let go of the guilt. You are doing nothing wrong. You need time for you, for your family and for your work. That is reality. When we are brought up in a dysfunctional family, we feel "false" guilt about a lot of things. Your first responsibility to your mum is that she is safe and cared for. That is happening. The rest is gravy.

Always take care of you!!!
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I am an only child and the only family to make decisions and care for my mom. She lives in assisted living but is currently doing rehab at a skilled nursing facility, having just been released from the hospital after being treated for a UTI. It is her 5th hospital stay in two years and her 3rd time in skilled nursing for rehab. I feel your pain. I do not want to visit mom. I'm tired of being her caregiver. I'm feeling nothing. I'm feeling very little compassion and at the same time I'm constantly worried about her. She complains constantly about everything, and makes fun of other patients at the facility and residents in her assisted living community. She has a little dementia and is hard of hearing. So, you never know if she is not hearing or not processing. Hearing aids don't help. It is exhausting visiting her because of the communication issues. After this most recent hospital stay, I chose a skilled nursing facility that is nearly 40 minutes from my home, but it is one she prefers. I work and I have a family of my own. I feel guilty that I'm not visiting every day. I just cannot do it. It's over an hour round trip, plus the several hours that I visit. I need time to myself and I need to keep up with work. I don't think you are being selfish, but I understand why you are asking the question because I feel the same. Intellectually, you and I both know that we have to maintain our own sanity and well being in order to be a good caregiver for our moms. I'm trying to be mindful about this situation, acknowledging that I have guilty feelings and that is normal. This forum is so supportive, and the only thing that really helps me is knowing that what I'm feeling is similar to what others are feeling.
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golden23: I have thought for a while now that my mother was a narcissist. It's nice to hear someone else say it. I think that my mother needs nursing home care. Possibly permanently but at least until she is strong enough to get up out of the bed. She still has pneumonia and they are still giving her IV antibiotics ffs. I don't really know what she is strong enough to do. She has pretended so much stuff I can't tell what's real and what's not this go round.

Thank you very much for the advice. I've looked into a couple of places online that might be suitable. There is no way she can come home for at least a couple weeks even if I moved in with her which I just can't do. I have a hard time being around her for more than an hour. I haven't broken the news to her yet. She may just leave ama and have an ambulance bring her home anyway so I am forced to go there. Would not put it past her!

Sorry OP, didn't mean to hijack your post!
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CTTN55: "They" are the people at the rehab center. "They" expect me to be the main caregiver and to find someone to be there when I am not at work. My mother will expect me to be her caregiver.
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rayne - not an easy situation. The original poster asked if she was being selfish not wanting to be her mothers caregiver.You are in a similar situation. No, you are not being selfish or terrible not wanting to be your mother's caregiver. It sounds like your home is completely unsuitable for your mother and, in any case, you do not have a good relationship with her. She sounds narcissistic. Taking her in would be disastrous for you.

So

1) your mother cannot live alone any more for medical reasons and

2) she cannot live with you.

Truthfully, it sounds to me like she needs professional care as in an ALF or NH. Has she been assessed as to which level of care she needs? If she can afford it, she can choose the place she best likes. Other than that, there is medicaid.

Before you feel guilty, realise that your responsibility as her daughter is to see that she gets the care she needs, but not necessarily to give that care yourself.

My mother is narcissistic and has a personality disorder. I let her know very early in my adult life that she could never move into my home. She didn't like it, but I did not budge. She would have ruined my life. As it was, she was always very hard on me anyway. She went into ALFs and then recently an NH.

Tell mother that you are not equipped to be a full time caregiver and in any case .your place is not suitable for her and you do not plan to move. Perhaps take her out for a meal so your conversation will be in public, which should modify her response. Expect her to be angry and manipulative with you, but don't give in to it. Remain calm and firm in your position. Offer to help her research and visit suitable facilities. Often ones with progressive levels of care are good. With COPD and being unable to live alone, her care needs will likely increase over the next few years.

Take care of you first!
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Who are "they"? Do "they" expect you to be the fulltime caregiver? Does your mother?
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My mother has COPD and has been told that she can't live alone anymore. They want her to choose hospice palliative care which allows her to come home but relies on a full time caregiver. All she has basically is me as I am her only daughter. She can't move in with me as I have had enough animals in my home to have dander for a million years, plus I have a wood stove. She lives in a tiny one bedroom apartment. But to be completely honest, I do not want to be her caregiver. I love her, but I don't like her. She always puts herself first and then tries to buy me off when I get mad. She's very demanding, she fakes attacks until I can't tell what is real and what isn't. Assisted living and nursing home care are alternatives but of course she wants to come home. Who wouldn't? I feel terrible but I don't want to give my life up for hers. I just don't know how to tell her.
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My MIL told my husband she wanted to live with us. We thought it was a bad idea, but we didn't want to say no. We should have. She is emotionally needy and very mean. Our peaceful home is now one where we all scatter as soon as we get home to minimize interactions with her. Interactions almost never go well. That is not right. We are now scouting out assisted living places in our area. We are going to do as suggested above. Find one we think could be acceptable and take her there. She also has the financial resources to go to ALF. I don't think she is nott out of a desire to leave a bigger inheritance. I think she likes being waited on. Ugh. Saying no now will be easier on you in the long run. Trust me on that.
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