Mother, lifelong hypochondriac, negative, bitter, complainer, is in assisted living after some nasty falls at home. We suspect she was abusing her meds and/or alcohol bc she has a history of both. Anything for a buzz, including lying to doctors about aches and pains so she can get opiates. Two sibs live nearby. One did all appts, errands, etc despite offers from other family members. Just "felt better" keeping tabs on things. While living cross country, I provided some financial support & services.
Moved back near enough by that I could do doctor appts, but saw right away mother is sabotaging her medical care. Lies to doctors about stupid stuff! For example, complains she stays wet all the time, so I found a top man in urology. He advised no coffee, even decaf, no sodas. Not only was she staying dry the days of the appts (several hrs. away from her residence) but she drank sodas on the way, then told him she hadn't had ANY since her previous appt.and still told him she constantly flowed urine. That's just one doctor out of maybe six.

OK, on three occasions now she has accused me of lying, fabricating, pulling things out of thin air, and she makes a huge scene. I have left in tears all three times, once at a medical center 2 hrs. from home. Each time, she and I have discussed a specific matter, arrived at an agreement over how it will be addressed, and then she accuses me of making up LIES when I carry through with our agreement and do what I said I would.

Specifically, as we headed out for appointments recently, she told me the staff never came to take her to breakfast. I stopped and picked her up a fast food breakfast bc she said her head hurt from not getting her BP meds. Completed our rounds, did some shopping, got lunch, & as we sat out front of her facility she said she didn't know why they never came to take her to the dining room, so I said, well, let's see if we can find out so it doesn't happen again. And she said OK.

Once inside, a tech came to her room to give her meds so I used the opportunity to ask if she could find out about the breakfast thing. She said my mother told them she had to be fasting for the Dr appt. She had got her dates confused, apparently, which I saw on her calender. I sort of lightly brushed it off with "well it's good we picked up a little bite," and pointing out that the next week was that doctor. All in good nature. She was scowling at me, shaking her head as the tech and I talked.

The minute the young woman left the room my mother went ballistic, saying I "always" embarrass her in front of others and use every opportunity to make her look foolish. Denied we had discussed finding out why she was passed over for a meal. Then started to accuse me of wanting more than anything to put her in a nursing home. I was so stunned I couldn't respond, so I told her I was sorry and I left.

As I say, this was the third time she has done this to me. Never has she done it to my sibs, who, of course, are now convinced I am some devil who stirs her up and really does lie. I don't know why I am singled out for this treatment. Of the three, I am (was) the only one who takes her shopping, gets her hair and nails done, that sort of thing. Special little touches.

I haven't spoken to her since this went down. She has never phoned me anyway, always told us kids she was sure we were too busy to be disturbed. (did I say manipulative, too?) She hasn't said anything the two previous times, when I always just went back &, if I tried to address it, was told I was "stirring up drama." Here's the thing: I do NOT feel badly about not seeing or talking to her. I know without one teeny doubt that I carried out precisely what she and I discussed, that I didn't say anything not true, that I didn't blindside her. (BTW the psychiatrist says she does NOT have dementia. I managed to get her meds reviewed bc I believed they were responsible for her foggy mental status, and she did get better, but she is supposedly not cognitively impaired. ) This smacks of hatefulness. I know how vindictive she can be but I can't guess why I'm being punished. I do know this: my sibs will side with her if for no other reason than she is their mother. They will believe whatever she says bc they have never been on the receiving end of her wrath, so I must be the problem, see?

My husband is encouraging me to reach out to her----again. I can't keep putting myself out there to get slapped down and falsely accused. If she appreciated my visits and the investment of time and energy, it might be different. Will I regret this when she's dead and gone? Maybe I will. But meanwhile, I have to try to stay sane. Feedback? Please be honest. I promise on my children's lives I have never been untruthful with her.

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I completely empathize. Don't visit her anymore.
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By the way, as for your family members who think you're doing all the bad things, maybe you should just let go and forget about them. In my situation, I just kind of said "forget them" and I no longer listen to them complain nor care about what they have to say. My life is too busy to worry about them and their nasty attitudes.
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Ask yourself this, "What do I get out of reaching out to her?"

It sounds like a selfish question, but everyone gets something out of each relationship/action. Maybe you think this will resolve something between the two of you. Maybe you feel guilty and feel compelled to help. Maybe you're just a kind person who feels bad for her. Maybe you're worried that you'll feel bad once she's dead that you didn't spend more time with her.

Really sit and think about this. What actions can you take, right now, so that you have no regrets, later? Those regrets involve not just her, but your spouse, children, yourself and others. If your "reaching out" to your mother causes you to be so miserable that your children aren't getting good care from you, then that is working against you.

Basically, you have to figure out what you want to do and how you want it to affect the others in your life. If you decided to be a martyr and "tough it out" with your mom, if it means you'll be so tired that you can't spend any time for yourself or family, then that's going to work against you.

It's a hard thing to figure out but no-one can answer that for you except yourself.
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