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I use to be a happy person...I walked everywhere, I hiked and biked when I could..I took the bus because I liked the people I spoke to...I was always laughing and smiling at work...I loved to just look at the sky during sunny days and smile...Not any more...I started taking care of my mother who has dementia...For three years I've been traped in a situation I hate...At first it was okay, but then the negative complaining, pickiness of food, don't want to do that, don't want to do this...everything is negative...I no longer am able to do the things I love...I dread going home after work...Sometimes I just want to cry...I'm tired all of the time...I started to jog during my lunch break, which has helped.. I'm sick and tired of people not understanding why this "sweet old lady" drives me nuts...More and more she has something nasty to say about the differences in people and I'm tired of having to apologize to people...Why can't she just see the positive things...She has always been negative, but now it is at new heights....The positive is that I've learned Infinite patience & I smile when I feel like crying...Hiding my emotions is now second nature...

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My mother's mood improved drastically, after the doctor started her on an antidepressant. I am certain that if she was able to go home, though, she would refuse to take it. At the AL, they just give it to her.
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Well, your Mom probably needs to vent and complain at this point in her life. Try to let it go in one ear and out the other.
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In prison, depressed, and -- for the time being -- with little chance for parole. In a nutshell, you've stopped living your life. Stuck in Purgatory for the crime of being a loving daughter.

You're becoming resentful and starting to fight back. But before you do anything silly, I suggest teaming up with others to share the responsibility of caring for your Mom. That should free up pockets of time to re-discover the soul of wonderful human being whose smile brightened everyone else's day.
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I once made my mother a very good pot roast with potatoes and carrots, and she said that the meat was stringy.

Reading the book about how to deal with a difficult older parent, helped me understand, a lot.

I had to convince my sister to let things fall where they may, with our difficult mother and thank goodness, it has worked out the best that it could. From a bath lady calling an ambulance, to good hospital care, to a good POA, to a nice rehab center. Of course, there is still some complaining, but not as much if we were making the decisions.
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We asked our family physician about why the aged complain endlessly and find fault with everything---he is also my MIL doctor as well. His response was "they are nearing the end of their lives and it is pretty much all they have left to do". It seems rather cold that he would say this but if you think about it, they are infirm, can't get out, can't drive , and basically just waiting to die. Yes, it is harsh but it is reality too. My MIL was moved here two and half years ago to a private town home ten minutes from us. She basically lived in a dreary city apartment (tenement is more like it) in NJ and we found a great place for her, via friends that attend our church. She never had central air conditioning, a washer and dryer in home, nice carpeting and tiled floors. It is a palace compared to the place she lived in for 50 years but she complains about it , they caregivers who come in to help her and clean for her, the doctors that she has had to see don't take enough time with her etc.etc. She has dementia and hallucinates now and then, thinking people are walking around her place. She is the pickiest eater on the planet! When she was waiting for her furniture to be transported down here, she had to live with us for three and half weeks. I had to make separate meals for her tastes and when I asked if she liked what was prepared for her, she would reply "I'm eating it, aren't I?" My heart goes at to all of you that care for the aged parent or other relative on a 24/7 basis. I only hope we get some contact from the VA soon regarding care at a facility as she can't be alone and it is dwindling whatever little money she has where she is now. She will not come here to live---I won't do that. Please don't think me rotten or selfish, I just will not live with her. Her older son in Fla. and his wife have not seen her in nine years! We have not heard from them since they day they called to find out why her phone was disconnected in NJ. Once they knew she was here, they have never called to see about her, her health , if she needed anything. Yes, hard to believe but entirely true. Not even a card or letter asking about her. You are doing the best you can and I commend you for this act of kindness towards your mother---please know that your situation is shared by so many. You are a good daughter and it is perfectly normal to have these feelings. I wish I could hold your hand and tell you it will get better---it may never get better but one thing I do know---you can go look in the mirror and feel joyful that you have done your best and provided necessary care and love to your mother. God Bless.
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She sounds exactly like my Mother, except that we didn't take her in to live with us. Caring for her, put my sister in an early grave. You have to take care of yourself. Even if it means making arrangements for assisted living, do it. Many elderly that I have dealt with in the past 6 months, actually like it, once they get there.
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You have to find the humor in everything. Remember that nothing lasts forever. You can equate that to the seasons of the year: when we are sick of the rain or cold, remember how hot it's going to get in the summer. And humid. There is no escaping any current situation with dignity. We must carry on and find things to give us JOY alongside the misery. See how strong you are. Humans can adapt to anything. Keep venting here . Try to make your Mother LAUGH. I'll bet she has not lost that ability. Turn it around and see how proud you will be of yourself. That alone will give you hope and happiness:))) HUGS!! xo
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Someone on this website mentioned a woman named Teepa Snow. She is a dementia expert, with videos on youtube, and she is funny. I just started watching them, and I think she has some great ideas that I'm going to try with my husband, who has dementia. There is one that might help with some of your mother's behaviors and that might take some of the pressure off you. It's called Accepting the Challenge.
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I have only one secret for real happiness. It has to come from inside of you. Happiness to me is like a spirit that spreads inside of you. A happy person stays content no matter what life brings his/her way. This doesn't mean that there aren't some bad days, only that happiness peeks back through.

We can get into some situations that make us unhappy because they chew at the core of us. My only advice would be to find a good way to get out of the situation or to find some way that it no longer chews at the core. I think we each have to look at what the best idea is for us, because each of us knows our situation best. For some people, it may mean finding a good facility for their loved one. For others, it may be finding meaningful social outlets. For others, it may just be setting good personal limits on what we will do.

Roberta, it sounds like you are a happy person in a sad situation. We're here for you to bounce thoughts and ideas off.
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