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she will not lift a finger to help in anyway in the house . she refuses to use the washer or dryer i do her laundry, run her bathwater, clean her sheets on bed, make her toast, get her drinks during the day , pick up after her all day long, take her shopping when she wants to go , of course give her her medications, pay her bills for her, and many more things. she is doing MUCH better with the new shots for the schizophrenia , and her other ailments are not that far along yet that she needs me to be doing these things for her. I think shes just enjoying being waited on hand and foot. I mention things to my husband , like her smoking in the bathroom upstairs, nothing said, she has Totally ruined my new 32,000 car yeah the one i was waiting to buy because i have no more children at home and can afford it now ! it smells like a nasty bar now. she smokes in the garage, out front on the porch. if i say anything hes like ok ok i will tell her she has to go , is that what you want ? or i get i know but what do you want me to do about it ? we are selling the house and move to a very nice apartment complex in two weeks. we went there yesterday and yep low and behold she is already telling him oh i want to put a table and chairs out on the patio and hanging baskets with flowers, and i want my bathroom with the purple flowers and you had to see the two of them going on and on . i was looking forward to moving and decorating MY apartment but i basically have no say , shes taking over everything and he is letting her. he says it makes her happy. My mother always told me blood is thicker than water. Oh and dont let me forget to add that i am her primary care giver and i do all this while i have a chronic illness of my own . i make sure she gets and has everythings she needs , and in the process i sometimes forget to take my meds and then hubby gets upset when i get sick. His brother wont help because he cant deal with it , and his sister cant help she did two yrs ago but she has younger teens and they all have issues of thier own so mom cant live with them and she was deemed incompetent to live on her own. She has a trailor house in a nice park in florida but cant live there alone anymore. anyway thanks for letting me vent. i know there are no real answers to this problem but it just feels better to vent.

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Get your own apartment and let your husband move in with mom.
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Why don't YOU go live in the nice trailer in Florida and let HIM take care of his mother. After all, they wouldn't want that nice trailer to fall into disrepair. ;)
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thank you everyone for answering. i appriciate all the advise good bad or otherwise. and most of you are right. i dont know why i am being a push over on this. its time to put my foot down or up some butts. I told my husband several things about my MIL that have been an issue and he said he is going to talk to her . I told him NO WE are going to talk to her. she has manipulated him sooo much since he was a child. He was born premature 4 weeks and he was very small . She tells him the story ALL the time how if it wasnt for her going to the hosptial and feeding him with an eye dropper he wouldnt of lived. and how it was such a struggle to get to the hospital because she was bleeding so bad doctors didnt want her there but she went anyway. OK stop making him feel guilty for being alive ok. SO we are talking to her about using the electric ciggartte and if she does not like that shes going to the doctor where she is going to be put on the patch. No more doing laundry or runnign bath. Figure it out . if you cant run your bath you will stink. if you cant run the washer you will wear dirty clothes. She does not get this treatment at her daughters house as i found out last night. So shes NOT getting it here anymore. Thanks again everyone, i will keep you updated on how this goes.
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That $565 would pay for a housekeeper, taxi fare to shop AND a laundry service!
I would communicate something important like this in a letter form. This way you can make all your points clearly without being interrupted and losing your train of thought. It helps me anyway. He will have time to digest and understand your point of view before discussing it together.. Start positive (ie; I love you and helping take care of your Mom is something I do out of that love.BUT....This is my life too, and we need to make some compromises) Make all your points as clearly and precisely as you can. Then set a time for THE NEXT DAY to sit and talk about solutions. Just a suggestion, hope it helps. Sometimes just the writing itself takes a big load off.
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Dear Kiernan30,

Your husband is being passive because it's easier for him to ignore the problem. Unfortunately, ignoring your feelings will kill your marriage. As others have pointed out, it's time for a non-threatening sit-down with your husband. Get your thoughts organized about what you want to change (no smoking in apt or car, mom has to contribute by selling her trailer and helping to pay household expenses, doing certain chores, etc.) It is perfectly reasonable for her to help out financially and with chores. Everyone in the household needs to respect each other. You are not a servant and your life is important too.

You can make sure MIL has a designated area to smoke in the complex. If she wants to live with you, she needs to abide by the rules of the house.

It doesn't have to be confrontational, your husband needs to understand that this needs to be fair to all. He needs to do his part to manage his mother and respect you. But you will really need to stick to your guns.

Now, if he doesn't get it, then it's time for counseling. You and he both will need to decide how you want the marriage to go. It will either get stronger or it will continue to sour until one of you decides to end it.
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You sound as if you feel you are without power. Counseling can be very helpful in such a situation. You can learn how to leverage your strengths and resolve this painful conflict. And please hang in there if you don't like the first therapist you try. Find the right one for you and enjoy the freedom of having an ally to help lift this heavy burden.
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I don't have that problem. My wife immediately tells me what's on her mind loudly, clearly, and repeats it until the problem is solved.
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I understand you are venting, but here are my ideas on this.

Your husband is putting his mother ahead of you as his wife which is not right. It also sounds like you are getting used as the caretaker without any concern for your own health issues. It's time for a heart to heart discussion with your husband about his mom and you two as a couple. Tell him that he can't have you taking care of her and then get mad at you for not taking your meds. That is not fair. I also think it is time for some boundaries with your MIL by saying know to doing everything for her. That will not be easy, but you need to take care of yourself.

I don't know what kind of nursing home would take her given her mental health issues, but she is obviously too much for one person. Is there such a thing as a psychiatric nursing home?
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Leave. Is there a relative or friend you can visit for 5-7 days? Go for a visit. Alone. Stock up the refrigerator, give your husband some notice and get out of town.

Sometimes people can't (or won't) understand a situation without living it themselves. Some call these people narcissists, I think they're just plain self-centered. If something isn't rocking their world, it's not a problem. So, let the situation rock your husband's and mother-in-law's world for a week or so. Then, have a discussion about it.
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Kiernan30 - You have gotten all very good suggestions from those above me, and I am wondering, why are you allowing yourself to be used like this? Perhaps you need counseling, perhaps you need a vacation, but most of all you have to figure out what you need and want the most for yourself BEFORE you can decide what to do. I would never allow anyone to destroy my health with smoking (secondhand smoking is worse than actually smoking), and I would not tolerate a husband who would allow his mother to dominate me without addressing her behaviors. But, that is me. You have to decide, no one else can motivate you, but you. I really understand about the schizophrenia and I was not aware there were injections for it now (my husband's ex-spouse has that disease). So you know her diagnosis will not change. The only two people who can change in this picture are you and your husband, and the only one you have power over to change is you. No one can make another change. Good luck!
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