My grandmother has never been easy to deal with, she has always been demanding and not easy to get along with. She has driven her son and her daughter (my mother) to not come around that much. Also her great-grandchildren (my children) refuse to go around her.
My husband and I were having problems and we are separated (but we are working things out). I agreed to move in with my grandmother because she needed someone to look after her, she isn't doing well she has COPD, Emphysema, and other lung issues. She cannot go from the table to the kitchen without stopping because she gets so weak and can't breath (she is on oxygen 24/7). I almost lost her twice once in January and once in February because she caught pneumonia and her breathing.
I have been with her now 3 months have only spent 1 night away from her (for work), and I try to see my husband for a few hours 5 to 6 days a week after work and on weekends, and am home with her every night. I have am the one that takes her to the hospital, mows her grass, cleans her house, does her laundry and dishes, she hates my cooking because its "to spicey" so she cooks. She has always been mean, but she is getting worse. She hates it when I leave for a few hours and tells me to move out. She has told me repeatedly that she wants me with her all the time, right after work and Saturday an Sundays. I am home by 8:30 every night, and right after work for 3 hours. I told her that my husband and I are working things out and she is negative about it, she is negative about how I do things how I cook, clean, drive...ect.. its seems that as soon as I wake up or when I walk into the house or if I breath it aggravates and she is in a bad mood, the only beings she is nice to is the animals. Anything i do around the house isn't right (i am 42 years old and I know how to clean a house, she used to tell me that my house is to flipping clean), and i explained to her i have different ways of doing things and i will try to do them the way she wants since it is her house, but to no avail its still not right and she yells about it. I have told her on many occasions that she is being mean and she needs to stop it. She just glares at me, then things are better for a few days and its right back to it. The other day I ran to the store because she was starving and she wanted bananas and brownies...I ran to the store and my husband was there so I talked to him for about 20 minutes, when I got back to the house she asked me what took so long, I told her the truth, she yelled at me, said a few um things I won't mention and then said she will never ask me to do anything for her ever again.
My mother says she wants to put her in a nursing home and I told her that is up to her, its not my call since I am a the granddaughter. She said she is talking to my uncle about it, and I told them not to be put in the middle of it, because it would get worse for me.
My grandmother told me that if I ever move out of the house then she will never speak to me again, then she tells me to get out, because I am seeing my husband a little bit a day.
She talks so bad about me to her friends who she doesn't see to much anymore (church friends), because she doesn't want to go do anything since it is so hard for her to get around. Her friends have come up to me and hugged me and said its all ok and they know I am doing everything I can for her. One of our long time friends that lived across the street even told her kids on her dying bed with me there that my grandmother has always been mean to me (she raised me by the way), and that I am the only one she is like this to.
Help!!!! My counselor suggested I be put on medication to help deal with this.
Your husband is more important than your grandmother. Move out. Grandma's not your concern. Why do you put up with the abuse?
Your marriage and yourself need to be number one in your life. Give your mother and uncle a deadline by which time you will move out, so that they can arrange an alternative. This must be very stressful for you.
I hope that you and your husband mend your marriage successfully. I agree that it is best to leave your grandmother's long-term welfare in other hands. Pack up and move back home with as little friction as possible.
I'm a little surprised that your counsellor didn't think of this suggestion first, in fact. Is there some reason why your counsellor might not think going home to your husband and children is a good plan for you?
Am I the only person who is wondering what form the marital difficulties took, and quite why Grandma, who brought her up, might go this batsh1t whenever the OP spends time with her husband?
She will continue to abuse you as long as YOU allow it. Time to move out and continue working on your marriage. Your grandmother is not your problem.
Sounds like your mother and your uncle are talking about doing something, let them.
Your marriage is important (obviously enough so that you both are working towards getting back together) work on that.
Tammy, as I also said earlier, I hope you and your husband do successfully put things back together again. And in any case, I do think you should make plans to leave your grandmother's house as soon as you elegantly can. And my congratulations to you on becoming the proud mother of a serviceman! :)
Just one thing, which I want you take to heart. How do I put it. *YOU* decide what is good for you. Okay?
I can sympathize with your ordeal. Tho my grandmother used to be the quintessential sweet little old lady until she got dementia, so it's been a 180 for me. My father was her only child, and nearly 4 years ago he asked me to sell my house and move in with her and take care of her for the rest of her life (No big deal, right?) because he felt like he couldn't care for her by himself anymore. Well I didn't sell my house but I moved in with her. He never told me he couldn't care for her alone because she had dementia. It wasn't apparent to me from my home a few counties away only visiting occasionally since I worked very long hours. After moving in, it became quite clear her problem was mental. I was planning on telling him the day after fathers day (we had plans so I didn't want to piss him off beforehand) I was moving back to my own home since she would undermine every attempt of mine to help her, when my mom called me that morning. Details aside, he died the day after fathers day. Totally unexpected. So I'm stuck with grandma. And after dad dying, she became 1000 times more hateful to me and my mother. The point to all this is, her hatefulness is due to the dementia, as I suspect your grandmother's is too. It is a mental illness, even tho they may seem mentally capable and it's behavioral issues we are presented with. I admit fully that I get very upset with her over her hatefulness and the things she does (when she's really mad at me she leaves feces in the bathroom sink for me to find when I go to brush my teeth of a morning). But I'm doing everything I can to keep her out of a home because she practically raised me. Because of my parents long work hours to support us, I spent more time with grandma than them until I was 16. I figure I owe her, even tho she is not herself anymore. I get VERY stressed out just like you do. I don't have an answer for dealing with it. But I am there with you, if it helps at all to know that. Lots of people say to move and let her suffer. But I think the reality is, you chose to care for her, even tho that was before her decline. If the rest of your family is too useless to help YOU in this situation, (I have a brother is prison for life, whom grandma thinks is the golden child who can do no wrong, and sends him most of her SS check every month, so I know the situation), it is up to you to decide what to do with her. You can hire a lawyer (I know, it's expensive, but probably necessary if no one has power of attorney as in my case) and file for guardianship. Once granted, you can control her finances and get her in a nursing home whether she likes it or not. I'm facing this right now, as my gm fell and broke her hip (while I was in the next room no less!) & she is getting kicked out of the rehab center in 2 days because she is a hateful turd and refuses to do the PT. I have got her accepted to a day center just in the nick of time (yesterday her approval came in, talk about sweating bullets) because she still can't go to the toilet by herself. I am VERY worried she'll get kicked out of there too, or give me total hell leaving in the mornings and make me late for work. She'll also probably give me extra special hell when at home out of spite for not leaving her home alone while I go to work. But that's where I'm at, just like you, between a rock and a hard place. My heart goes out to you, I hope you find the help you need to weather this storm. Do whatever you feel is the right thing, whatever that may be.
Few other family members were around, so a lot fell to us. My mother, who had been a caregiver herself for both her mother and mother in law, blessed us by choosing her own nursing home. She used to visit them for craft fairs and of course to see friends etc. In the meantime, she decided which one she would like to be in if it ever came to that.
Because most people are kept going by artificial means these days--and even medication, as one cardiologist told me, is artificial means, most illnesses can go on for years and years. You, with a family of your own, are a member of the sandwich generation.
You don't say how old your children are, but I'm sure their need you too. Your husband sounds like a patient, flexible and caring man. I'm sure all of them are missing out on a lot of life because of this situation.
You don't say why your own mother is not helping out--or if she is at all--and you say your grandmother raised you, so I assume that perhaps your mother is not well or is incapacitated in some way. Obviously if you have siblings they should help too, either by staying with your grandmother sometimes or by helping to pay for someone who could.
However, at some point, it will neither be safe for you or your grandmother to keep her at home. When it got to the point, for example, that I could no longer lift my mother to bathe her or get her in and out of her wheelchair to the toilet, etc., I realized we had no choice but to place her in a nursing home.
We kept my mother-in-law in her own home until the same thing happened, and we even had extra help at that time. We were, however, having to call an ambulanced every other week to take her to the hospital.
Her doctor finally told us not to bring her back to the hospital unless we were desperate for a break. It finally came to that point and she died there awaiting an opening in a nursing home. Also keep in mind, Tammy, that most nursing homes have waiting lists. If you wait till the last minute you could really be in trouble.
My dad finally fell during the night when he got up to go to the bathroom. We found him naked and shivering on the floor the next day, where he had fallen during the night.
I will be back to tell you what happened with my 93 year old aunt to finally convince her she needed a nursing home. We are in the midst of a storm that has dropped at least 12 " so far, and I need to check on my husband who is outside snowblowing.
My husband, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2000, is in the final stages of cancer now. That, too, has been a roller coaster ride both physically and emotionally.
I agree with others who advise you to move back to your family. They are every bit as important as you grandmother. I know you think you will be deserting a woman who once cared for you, but it will be best both physically and emotionally for everyone concerned.
I also wonder, however, if your grandmother has always been abusive or if this has come with age and illness. Many people become very bitter when aging and going through a lengthy illness. So there can be personality changes. There are also other ways of dealing with bitter and angry people, which I'll tell you more about based on my experience.
Until then, bless you for being so loyal and caring. But realize we are only human and can only do so much. You and your husband and children deserve a life too.
BUT it is not required that anyone put themselves in harm's way just because they love someone with dementia. Expecting to care for someone who has dementia through the very end stage is usually unrealistic, even if they don't develop unacceptable behavior. Persons with dementia generally reach a point where they need 3 shifts of trained care providers who have other helpers to call upon in emergencies or during dangerous situations.
My own mother was never abusive before or during her dementia. She was a nurturing mother and a sweet old lady. But she did reach a point where she needed more care than could be provided in a private home. My sisters and I placed her in a nursing home, not knowing what to expect. It took her a while to adjust, and then she actually thrived.
I do not understand why so many adult children or grandchildren are so determined to keep their loved one out of a care center. Why wouldn't you want the LO to have the best care available? Is it pride that you can't admit that you can no longer provide the level of care needed? Are you afraid of what others may think?
The same thing is happening to me, except my parents and her sisters and brothers have all already passed away. No one else in the extended family has offered to help. She is a miserable person and seems to only get joy by fighting with me. The only person she is nice to is my husband, and when she's pretending she's a sweet, cute little old lady for strangers. I'd rather her be mean to me than my husband.
She's mean, rude, disrespectful, and inappreciative and all of this hostile and nasty behavior is only focused on me. At Christmas, she opened all her presents and thanked my husband for all of them. He had to tell her several times that the gifts were from both of us. She just brushed him off and turns to me and says (to me)," well if you don't know by now that I love you, I don't know what to tell you. Just leave me alone ."
When I take her to the dr, she fights me the whole way. Screaming and yelling like a lunatic. Veins popping out of her neck. I think this is the only time she really feels alive. When she complains "Everything is wrong, and starts crying," she refuses to get in the car and go to the dr or urgent care. I could go on and on. Basically, she wants to die and is pissed God hasn't taken her yet. She's 92.
I have asked her repeatedly to stop taking it out on me, and she tries to flip the tables and says I treat her badly, transferring her behavior onto me.
Before moving in with us, I offered her to check out Assisted Living Facilities, she refused, saying " You're not sticking me in a nursing home!". I tried to explain it isn't like that, but she has her mind already made up without even visiting one. She wouldn't let me get her aides (doesn't want strangers in her house and she wouldn't open the door when they come), wouldn't let me deliver groceries for her by a delivery service (I won't let them in and I won't bring them in if they leave them on the porch). I live in NY, she lived in FL.
The right thing to do is never the easier path. I have asked her to see a therapist, someone that understand what she's going thru and can help her work thru it. "I've never had to see anyone my whole life, and I'm not starting now." I tried to explain "don't you want to live the rest of your life in peace and harmony. I'll even go w you, but this isn't working." She refuses to compromise or make any efforts.