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I have posted before. My mom who will just be 65 this year is an emotional mess since my father unexpectedly died in 2016. Mom’s health was never good & it has continued to deteriorate since Dad’s passing. Mom was totally dependent on Dad for everything. Financial, physical, emotional & psychological support, which also explains why Dad died so early. He spent so much time caring for her and putting her needs first that he neglected himself despite having a chronic digestive disease for 25 years that he knew needed monitoring for more serious issues.


Long story short now with dad gone the care of mom has fallen totally on me. I’m the oldest of three daughters. My two younger sisters are completely absorbed in their own lives even though we all live within a five minute or less drive of each other, I’m the one who gave up everything to move my own family back into our family home so mom wouldn’t have to live alone. Now here I am caring for mom, my two teens, my husband & myself without any extra support. My sisters expect me to take Dad’s place in everything not just care of mom but being their go to girl if they need help. One sister has a useless, cheapa$$ husband, a 2 year old & a 2nd baby on the way. Mom begs me to provide two days a week of daycare for the 2 year old to allow her to feel “useful”. Granted this means mom sits in her recliner sometimes holding her or reading to her, while I’m the one who makes sure the busy, active 2 year old doesn’t get hurt or break anything. I’m supposed to manage this while still trying to actually be a mom to my own kids & help my husband run a business. I’ve sacrificed my chance to finish my Masters degree & any chance of the career that I was pursuing prior to my dad’s untimely demise. My husband says I need to start insisting my sisters help me more with mom but they both work out of the home and have their own homes and frankly they’ll be more hinderance than help because they don’t know what mom wants/needs like me. Mom’s afraid if I lay down the law & tell my sisters to suck it up & stop expecting my help all the time that she’ll never see them again because the only reason they come over is to get help or a free meal (which I’m also expected to provide).


Sadly she’s probably correct b/c if they don’t come here for help or free food they never show up otherwise. Unfortunately mom is also extremely lonely. She had few friends, even before dad’s death and she’s now retired from her job and as is common most of her outside acquaintances and our extended family have stopped coming to visit and or even calling. So she’s alone most of the time except for me. Which means she insists I don’t leave her alone for long because she’s afraid to be alone out of fear of something bad happening. I can barely spend time with my own family. Mom gets mad if I go upstairs for a long time just to sit and watch my own TV! I’m being smothered by own mother and I don’t know what to do. It’s putting a strain on my marriage and my relationship with my kids. My own health is not perfect as I suffer from the same chronic digestive disease that my dad did & mom is so wrapped up in her own issues that she honestly doesn’t care how tired or run down I am. There is nothing mentally wrong (according to a clinical psychologist) other than her crippling emotional grief over losing my dad & her deep fear of being abandoned & left alone in her final years.


I have no intention of abandoning her but I need my own space & life & I don’t know how to tell her without further crushing her mentally & emotionally. I’ve begged her to go to counseling or a support group but she refuses. She says there’s nothing anyone can say to help her. She’s basically homebound now b/c she can’t drive & no one ever comes to take her anywhere. I feel very bad that she’s so alone but I’m tired of being the Lone Ranger who is expected to bear all the burdens & never have my own respite. Advice or suggestions appreciated.

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Why cant sister pick up mom and take her to her house so mom can babysit
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Reply to kellse
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I feel for you....I can say I know what you are going through. I have a 92 year old mother I have had living with us 19 years. Two brothers, both live within 10 miles of us and no help. Older one is in total control of her finances. She does not have a ton of money but enough for burial and more. It is so hard like you said to juggle it all. I just know we both just need to pat ourselves on back, smile, spent quality time with parent, because in the end I am sure the Lord will ask them why they refused to help.....then they will have to have an answer!! Head up....your not alone. Love to you...
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Reply to Sunshine893
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Get her into a 55 & older adult independent apartment complex. It's too bad your father enabled her to remain child-like because now she's convinced she's helpless, and relying on 'anxiety' and 'fear' and 'grief' to garner the sympathy she needs to keep sucking YOU dry. My father did the exact same thing with my mother, then died in 2015 and here I am, the only child, in charge of doing everything for my mother who's 92. She does live in an assisted living facility, thank God. There was NO WAY I was going to take her into my home to ruin my life, because that's exactly what would happen. It's bad enough to be doing everything for her OUTSIDE of my home!!!

I really think you need her to get OUT of your home, one way or another. Like the other poster said, she will buck & snort but that's FINE. Help her move, help her buy furniture & everything else she needs, even pay her bills (with your mother's money) if need be, just get her OUT.

GOOD LUCK!!
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Reply to lealonnie1
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kthomas629 Jan 7, 2019
It’s her and my father’s house not mine. We left a rental and returned to my childhood home. And she’s not in a position to sell and move anywhere not that she would even if she were. And that’s not the answer I’m looking for either. She’s not selfish she’s merely a product of her upbringing and her generation. She was raised to believe the wives stayed home, kept house, raised the children and husbands provided. She’s never been independent in her entire life and she has no idea how to do it now. She’s has tried but it’s still difficult for her to manage especially with things she’s never done before finances, bills etc. I don’t fault her for her views, her personality quirks or the choices she has made in life. Nor am I blaming her for the situation we are currently in. It’s no one’s fault, it just the way it is. I am really looking for legitimate, accessible compassionate ideas that won’t further hurt my mom’s already fragile emotional state and maybe will give her and I some peace of mind and make our situation a little easier to manage.
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Does she ever reach out to friends?

I get that she is lonely but you can't help her if she refuses to help herself, something's we just have to do. Like reaching out to others instead of waiting for them to call.

You need to really analyze how much benefit you get from your sisters for all you do. You may find they won't be missed as much as you fear. They are taking advantage and only you can set and enforce boundaries.

You have taken over for your dad, he enabled her to be self centered and now you are that enabler. I don't mean to be harsh, people only move out of their comfort zones because of necessity and you have dealt with the necessity of her moving.

She can not be allowed to destroy your marriage or your relationship with your children. You are a wife and mother 1st and foremost, time to get mom on her own 2 feet. She will buck and snort, that's okay, she can do this as soon as you stop propping her up she will find her legs or need to go to a facility. Every one way street eventually dead ends, hers is near.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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If she won't get counseling, then get some for yourself. Unfortunately you are sucked into your moms pity party. I don't say pity party as a bad thing, but it is your caring personality that has probably pulled you in. I was in the same boat as you, but not quite as extreme. If you can bring in your siblings for this counseling it would be helpful too.
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