My parents spent most of their lives living irresponsibly, depending on family and friends for money, housing, financial needs, and work. My mother was more capable and independent than my father, yet she held herself back to keep him from feeling bad and she supported him in his schemes. If it hadn’t been for my grandparents, my family would have been homeless. I know they helped for the sake of us kids.
Now my Dad has passed away and my Mom is living with us because my brothers who bought the house my parents lived in when my brothers were in their early 20s can no longer afford to pay for the house since they have families of their own. In the original verbal agreement, my parents were supposed to buy the house from my brothers after a few years but my father refused to even discuss it with them. Mom had a stroke shortly after my Dad passed away which affected her vision and other cognitive abilities, so she can no longer do the design work she once did and support herself. She had nothing saved up and lots of debt.
I want to get past resentment at the choices she made. She has a little bit each month that she can spend as she likes – eating out mostly – and sometimes I really have to work hard at letting her have these small indulgences. I feel they indulged themselves all their lives at the expense of others and she is still doing it. But she really can’t live on her own even if she pinched her pennies, got on food stamps, and I found low-income housing for her. She needs to be reminded to eat and get any exercise and can’t go anywhere alone. She pretty much pays her own way, though we do buy the basic food (she buys extras she wants, candy or treats, her special breakfast foods, etc.)
I thought I had forgiven her over the years. But maybe being this close to her all the time makes it harder not to resent the choices she made and sometimes still makes. Any tips?