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I have began to help my Mom first with her medications. Just getting all of them together in one place and double checked them with prescribing Doctors so every one was one the same page. Then I typed out a med list, made 3 copies, one I put in a envolope and clipped a dated detailed list of her meds to the refrigerator, sent one to one of my 3 brothers, and kept one. I also started making her Doctors appointments as asked to by my Mom. I was already for several years giving her rides to her appointments. I also do her shopping and occasionally, buy her a nice NY Strip my treat, and make her a nice dinner (once a week at minimum). I do my best to get her to drink fluids, buying her a flavoring dropper for her water and continually am filling ice cube trays with bottle water to keep her water cold and freeze 3 or 4 bottles of slightly flavored water. This makes it easier for her just to go in the kitchen and grab a bottle of water out of the freezer. And so much more. I have no problem doing this for my Mother. She put up with me and my craziness for over 10 years or so. This in no way makes me feel any obligation to do this for her. I do what I do because she is my Mom and I love her. That's the bottom line. Lately she seems to be mad at me around half the time I'm there lately closer to everytime. There are now at times when she gets mad because I talk to her Doctors like she herself asked me to do. I always loved going over to just visit. Lately I have felt like I don't want to go over because of her abusive behavior. Any thoughts out there in happy land? I am so tired at 60.

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At first Mom just saw you as helping out a bit with things that were hard for her. That's what family does. No big deal. And now (perhaps) she is recognizing that this is not optional help, the help is a necessity she has come to rely on. She is seeing the loss of her independence. That is enough to make anyone crabby or worried or depressed. She is not mad that you talked to her doctor -- she is mad that she needs you to do it. Of course it doesn't make sense to take it out on you, but emotions don't always make sense. This is totally guessing on my part, but try the idea out and see if it sort of fits.

There could be other or additional causes. A UTI in elders disturbs their behavior. Pills can have side effects. Pain adds to crabbiness.

I am 72 and live alone in a house. I often have my sons do things for me. I can still tell myself that I could continue living alone if I didn't have them to help. I could hire someone to clean the gutters. I could put mousetraps around in the fall myself. I could bring folding chairs up from the basement for a party -- it would just take me longer. As long as I can tell myself, "Well, I could do it if I had to," I can continue to feel independent.
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Dear Tiredat60,

I know you love your mom and are trying to take care of her the best you can. I struggled with the negativity as well. Its totally understandable that you are tired at 60.

I wonder if your mom's abusive behaviour is due to the side effects of the pills. Or if its her high blood pressure, diabetes or cholesterol? Depression about aging? Staying at home all the time? I know its hard to know. And so hard to remain patient. I will be the first to say, I failed to do this for my dad after his stroke. I just got increasingly frustrated and just wanted to avoid him as well. Looking back this is a big regret of mine. I failed to see he was dying. I failed to tell him everything that was important. Here I spent every day with him and I didn't even say, "dad, I love you." Instead it must have come across like I was bothered instead. I was always too busy running errands to slow down.

Maybe your mom will consider assisted living or a nursing home. This way she will have more company and care. And deserve to have a break too. I hope you can find an option at works better.
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