I am slowly going nuts! What can I do?

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Yesterday I went and bought a playstation for myself. I'm here with Mom all the time, and needed something to do that would keep me mentally awake.

Well the first time she saw me playing a game she started in on me. "That's the stupidest thing I've ever seen". But that wasn't enough. She told me if I'm going to play that damned thing, she's locking herself in her bedroom!

What can I do. She complains if I go anywhere. She complains if I talk to anyone on the phone. She complains if I put on a movie. She complains when I am here on the computer.

She totally expects me to spend every waking minute with her, staring at the walls! That's all the woman does! That and spying on the neighbors. I constantly get a running report on what everyone in the neighborhood is up to. ( of course it's her idea of what they are up to ). I no longer have a life! Can't go anywhere, can't read a book, can't watch a movie, and most definitely cannot listen to music! What does a person do in a situation like this.

Dad died six years ago. I have been living with her ever since. I had to quit my job while Dad was still living. They were constantly calling me at work, with every little problem. Mom has no interests, no hobbies and she won't go to any senior activities! She refuses to make any new friends. All her friends are dead. She doesn't want to do anything other than sit in her recliner and zone out, or dig out old pictures and stare at them. The only time I get to myself is when she goes to bed.

I am beyond burnout!

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Did you take her with you when you went to buy the play station? If she can be left alone, I think you should tell her you need to have a life. I cannot believe how selfish some of these old people are. She seems to biding her time until she dies, and she will probably want to take you with.
I'm sorry you let her manipulate you, but any changes will have to be forced by you. You must know this?
Is it financially possible to place her? It may sound cruel to some who would Never leave their parent's side, but each of us in entitled to a Real Life. Rebel against the Narcissist Machine, Ted:) xo
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Hi 2TiredInFlorida! you have gotten a lot of feedback along the lines of "just ignore her and do what you need to". this is true, but I know it is waaay easier said than done. As one previous poster said, I think it will really help if you can start to change the way you think about your mom, think of her more as an adult child now, than as your mother. One approach that I take with my young son, (as well as my elderly mother!), is to be "loving but firm". that means that I tell them, for example, "I love you, and I want to take care of you, but to do that I need to take care of myself too". If she threatens to shut herself in her room, just calmly tell her "ok, if that's what you need to do. feel free to join me when you want to", or something along those lines. And do come to the forums and vent when you need to! it really helps to connect with others who understand how challenging elder care can be.
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Well it is okay to vent, but you need to start off by saying you are just venting. You really don't want to make any difficult changes, sounds like you have decided she is first and you don't count. Sorry to hear that; but not going to make suggestions and waste my time.
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No, he said that she will not allow strangers in her own home. He is respecting her wishes. However, sometimes promises can be broken if the burden is way too much for you...when your mom reaches that stage, I hope you know this. Pride is not worth it if she suffers due to you respecting her wishes. Know when it's time to call the calvary (uhm...hospice, home care people, etc..)
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I think everyone has said it so I won't repeat. Only YOU can determine how much control your mother have on you. Have you done some serious introspection? WHY are you allowing your mother to control your actions? WHAT is it that you want in life at this late stage? How LONG do you think you both will live like this before you finally are able to live your own life? Are you willing to wait that long?

Truly, if you have no goals in life, your mother will continue to control or rule yours. Once you decide what YOU want, and brainstorm the different scenarios, I think you will start to find the spark of life and independence WITHIN you. If you really want something bad, you will find a way to deal with your mother and have a life outside of the home -if she's capable of caring for herself for a couple of hours. Please think about this.

Otherwise, just ignore her. My father is like your mother. He doesn't even like it when I laugh with people. He orders me to turn off the TV and that he hates the computer that I'm on. I just make the TV louder so that I can hear, and continue to type on the laptop. If he keeps pushing it, I turn around and tell him that I Pay for the cable and I darn well will watch when I feel like it. He can have the TV off the whole day while I'm at work. But when I'm home, I will do my thing. I hope you figure out how much you're willing to find some kind of independence from your mom that you can live with.
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Someone on some TV show (maybe Oprah?) used to say that we teach other people how to treat us. You've taught your mom not to value you, your independence or your happiness. You need to retrain her about what is acceptable and not acceptable behavior from one adult human being to another.

You're not her slave. You're her loving son. You deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, just like she does. Sit down and have a calm discussion about her behavior and how it bothers you. Tell her how you expect to be treated - you deserve time to do what you find fun/enjoyable without her complaints about it. When she starts going off on you the next time (and there will be a next time), calmly tell her that you won't accept that kind of behavior or language and you're leaving until she can treat you with the respect you deserve. Then calmly leave the room/house. Stay away for a while (5-10 minutes). When you come back in, if she starts in again, repeat again that you're leaving because she's not treating you with respect. Then you leave again. She'll quickly learn that you will only stay around her (and provide for her) if she treats you with the respect you deserve as another human being. It will be hard at first, because she won't understand or expect you to set limits on her complaining behavior. But since you're her link to the rest of the world, she is dependent on you and what you can do for her. You hold all of the cards!

You deserve your place in the world just as much as she does. She's had her life and is coming to the final line. You've got lots of time left. Don't let her take away your joy and happiness. Being a loving caregiver doesn't mean that you have to give up your whole life and be miserable while catering to her every whim. I'd also get a TV in my room, so I could play the Playstation in there. Let her sit and stew and find a place where you can be alone and do what you want to do. Good luck!!
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I think reading a book or listening to music or watching a movie are all pastimes that would be good for you. I agree with bookluvr, why let mom tell you what you can and can't do? These are perfectly reasonable things to do if you're shut up in the house. If your mom wants to stare at a blank wall or spy on the neighbors let her. Doesn't mean you have to do those things too. You're an adult. Do what you want.
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2TiredinFlorida: I too am faced with this same dilemma however my mother cannot be left alone for long periods of time. If your Mom is able to be by herself I would seek employment just to get out of the house. Working will give you money, self esteem and hopefully provide a new group of friends.

If Mom cannot be left alone, is she eligible for an in home caregiver? Maybe through Medicaid? I know you said she doesn't want someone in her house, but honestly I use to let my Mom call ALL THE SHOTS and I no longer do. This seems cruel but someone opened my eyes to the fact that I was letting a mentally incompetent woman with dementia run the house. I finally had to stand up to her and say "NO Mom, this is the way it is going to be..... I received a lot of flack but it gets past that as time goes on.

What it sounds like is your Mom is suffering with depression and possibly dementia and she is just waiting until she dies. She has nothing else to live for, she has you but she feels like you don't really need her so she has nothing in her life to keep living for and most likely says things, like "I will be glad when I am gone!" This shakes you up for a while as you are trying to save this person and they are wishing for death.

Currently I am seeking a new doctor for Mom and hopefully medication that will help with this exact behavior and I would strongly suggest you do the same. It is hard to go to the doctor with them and say these things in front of them, so a couple of times I have written a letter to the doctor and given it to them instructing the doctor to read it BEFORE ENTERING THE ROOM, just so they are up to speed on what is happening.
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Ken, and please remember - no one is going to take care of you BUT you. You can see that so many here are concerned about your well-being. When I told my mom - who still lives independently - that others were concerned about me because of my stress, she didn't care. It was all about her. It sounds like your mom is also a narcissist (sp?!) and you need to be kind to you...as kind as you have been to her. It's too easy to get caught up in the web. Please take to heart the good advice others have offered you...and make a change.
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Can your mother basically take care of her own needs? I would suggest that you not let her manipulate your emotions...just keep playing the playstation...she will get tired of being in her bedroom all the time. As long as you let her manipulate you, you will have no life, set some boundaries. I feel for you, Hugs!!
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Well first thing I have 3 parents, 2 kids (4 &9) with me. So let me say the first thing is to try to not take one thing they say personally. What I mean by that is if your neighbor said those things what would you say/do? My mother-in-law throws more temper tantroms then my 4 year old. She is no longer you "mom" but your adult kid. So now you have to be the parent. Set boundries, have rules. Have a schedule. lay down the law. If you don't something could mentally/physically happen to you & then your mom is all alone. Now how is that going to work? Just a few thoughts, Ones which I'm trying to use every day.
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