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She gets to me. I Can't seem to feel unemotional. She said im always going out. She is concerned about needing me in an emergency. My brother lives with her. But he is no good in emergencies mom says. He has called 911. And gone with her to hospital before. He just doesn't alk to the nurses or help mom in the hospital. Like I will do. I live an hour and a half away. But I do have the POA if needed for medical treatment if she is unconscious and the do not resuscitate order if necessary.
Here is what Im doing the next few days. Go out in morning tomorrow be back home early afternoon. Friday's out early morning be back home about 2:00pm in the afternoon. Saturday gone most of day but he home in evening. Mom said that sounds like Im going to be out all the time. That she could call me and call me all day and not get me. She is 89 years old. I can't not live a life because she might need me. I gave her my cell phone number. She never asked for it before. It's a little hard to understand people on the cell phone. So I don't use it. Now I'm going to turn it on everyday.
But that's just an example of how she gets to me. How do I think of her more like a client instead of a mother?
I'm emotionally worn out right now. Constantly going through emotional things with mom.


Barbara

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Been there, done that. What you do is talk to her less. Spend less time. That will automatically distance you emotionally. It's hard and sad, but also a matter of survival.
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It is a difficult when one has reached the burned out, overwhelmed, and had enough emotionally state of mind. You may feel stuck, or that you cannot box your way out of a paper bag. That is understandable, but will not last. You can regain some footing if you will follow some simple directions. You choose what will fit for you. People can give you some baby steps to follow.

Here is the first suggestion: Avoid telling a patient (mom) the hours you will NOT be available. It just serves to panic her. Don't give her your schedule. Learn to avoid reporting these things to her. Others will have techniques on how to do this. Because, I would be the last person to be evasive or know how to NOT answer her. Try it to the best of your ability.
Google techniques online, such as distracting the patient.
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It IS a delicate balance, Barbara, and harder for some than others. I think in this caregiving role those of us here have undertaken, there's always a question of how much, how long, and preserving our own sense of self. And that's not even considering the guilt factors.

I wish you all the best, as well as success, in recovering your own life. But start gradually -- that's what I did. And enjoy those private moments for yourself.
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Thanks for all the posts. I sort of took over being there for mom in my teenage years. I don't remember why. Because dad was still alive. Maybe because my childhood was free. No chores, didn't have to make my bed even. Then age 15 or 16 mom started asking me to help her. Get groceries, cook dinner, iron clothes, etc. And I guess I felt she needed me.
As for my brother. He has done more than I ever expected him to do. But there is a limit to what he will do. Even if I don't do anything for mom and never talk to her again. Which I won't. I'm going to start trying to put myself first. Been in therapy for a lot of years. But not lately. I'll think about it.

Barbara
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Posting isn't the issue; I think it's the situation you've allowed to be created in being the go-to fallback person, as well as the clear priority of needs that's been established that your mother comes first and you're a distant second.

I too don't mean to criticize but I've seen this in your other posts. If your brother doesn't do something, you're ready to step in and do it. So your brother has probably figured out by now that you're waiting in the wings. So why should he exert himself if you'll step in and help?

I kept getting the impression from your posts that you're tied to this situation even though your brother is the first level of responsibility, but you're not able to back off and be only a backup, not a first responder whenever he doesn't do something.

And your mother obviously has figured this out as well.

I write this uncritically, but feel I need to raise the issue. Have you been a pleaser all your life? What's the history of needing to please your mother?

You really do need to put yourself first if you want to get out of this trap. Start making plans for yourself and adhere to them. Next time she needs something, explain that you're job hunting, have an appointment, whatever, and that brother needs to start being more responsible.

I think the issue turns, however, on how you view yourself - as an independent individual helping your mother, or as a subservient daughter living only to be at your mother's beck and call.

Again, I don't intend to insult you, but I'm being blunt because I think it's necessary.

But if you do stop posting, please see a therapist about recapturing your self esteem and self direction.
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I really dont think its possible for a child to become completely emotionally detached from a parent. That being said, you can set up boundaries and do not need feel guilt. You could call the local commission on aging and see if she can get an aide and lifeline. Dont answer your cell phone if you have plans. Auto reject the calls, you will not hear it ring but if she calls, youll see the missed calls. I do it all the time.
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Hadnuff - there's nothing to be sorry for and I'm not suggesting you not post by any means. I'm just saying to help you out of your situation perhaps a professional counsler would be a good idea - Lord knows I could benefit from one! As you said, you are dealing with a life time of learned behavior and unlearning it may require more help than an anonymous support group - or a journal, can provide.
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Sorry, I get so upset each time she calls me and it is so hard to detach. Mom said the physical therapist told her to get Icy Hot to rub on her neck. Mom didn't ask me to get it for her. But my first thought was: Ask her if brother is going to go get it soon. If not tell her I will get it and mail it to her. I had to stop myself from saying it out loud. The posts have helped me. I keep reminding myself of them. It's just real hard to do. And being triggered by her over a life time is hard to change. I guess it's time to go back to writing in my journal instead of posting for a while.
Barbara
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Hadnuff - please don't take offense in what I'm going to say - it's not meant as critism but as an observation.
I the past week you have posted this same question - with only slightly different wording three times. You seem to be chasing your tail in your lack of ability to see yourself clear of your situation. The answers you are recieving here don't seem to be helping you - but re-asking the question isn't going to change the answers or help you now - if they haven't helped the previous two times. Perhaps it's time to seek out a professional counsler whom you could talk to face to face and work more in-depth with to help find you the answers and solutions you are looking for. I wish you nothing but sucess in finding the piece of mind you are seeking. Good luck!
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