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My mother is 87, she moved to US 45yrs ago, I the youngest of 3 move here with her, she visits my country and sisters once a year but never more than 4-5 weeks, they don't work and all their children are grown, I've been a single parent for 15yrs, I support myself and help to babysit my grandkids now and then. my mother is in good health compare to people her age but she is a constant complainer, she makes it very clear that she will stay here till the end of her days
I spend most of my weekends with her yet when she talks with her friends on the phone in front of me she states that I some time spend time with her and she will never say that I am a good daughter, she limits her coments to say that I behave ok and that I am doing my job as a daughter not more not less. this is painful to me because I feel that I've been giving more that I received, lets say my relationship with her throu my childhood and adolecent years left much to be desire, i feel very hurt when she makes this coments, yet mention this to her does not acomplish anything, Itell her that I dont need any thanks or gifts or anything but that her coments even to my children really bothers me. what to do?
I feel spent.........hurt...........and on a dead end.
thanks for being there

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Ash, I am also dealing with rough patches in my relationship that don't have anything to do with her, but there is very little support/understanding in any real way there. It doesn't help. I am 8 years in and keep hoping he will love me like I do him. I am just tired. I am venting.
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emi, I apologise, s we seem to have hijacked the thread. My mother was/is a constant complainer. Nothing has ever been good enough and nothing ever will. If she's been that way all her life there's nothing you can do about it. Visit and give her hand but be sure to maintain a life for yourself as well. As she gets older she will get worse and need much more care than anyone can handle alone. I suggest you contact your local social services to see what your options might be if/when she needs care 24/7. Good luck and keep us posted.
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Nikki you may not feel as awful as you might imagine. What you will feel is a huge empty void because your life has revolved totally around her and you have had no other life. You'll go into shock, staring into that empty void, for some time. Then you have to think of rebuilding your life, your family, maybe getting a job which isn't easy, especially if you've been out of the work force for some time. Rebuilding your life will take a long time. I call it "the road to recovery"..

It's a couple of months now since I had a blackout due to stress, changed my phone number and cut back on visits. I also take my phone off the hook late afternoon until the next morning so the NH can't bother me with every little trivial thing and I'm starting to feel better though I'm always still tired.

I feel so badly for your children as they must have a niggling feeling of not being good enough, not wanted, though I'm sure you try to make up for it and they know she's just a mean and evil witch.

We've had a couple of lovely spring days. Yesterday I took my dogs to the dog park an hour away, a vet checkup and got groceries. Had them outside playing ball twice today and they're zonked out - we've all got fat this past awful winter - now I'm going to pop a turkey in the oven, check out the flyers for specials and watch a little tv while I shred unwanted flyers for the compost. I expect it will be some months before I recover (or as much as I ever will). One day at a time, one step at a time.
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Ash, I don't know if she knows - they say that when someone is into moderate dementia, they don't have the cognitive reasoning to be manipulative or to plan... do you know what I mean? Basically her behavior is just an unfiltered version of who she is and has been.... My son's 18th birthday is tomorrow. He was the apple of my father's eye, and when dad was alive, he told me that mom "didn't like" my son. My son was kind of bratty but it wasn't that she didn't like his behavior; she did not like HIM. She didn't like him talking back because I (underscore the i) belonged to HER and was a reflection of HER. Anyhow, tomorrow he turns 18. He is slowly changing into a thoughtful young man. He has a good heart and is a good kid. But because she got mad at him yesterday because he didn't cow-tow to her, she has told me he will get nothing, not so much as a card. She has decided not to acknowledge his 18th birthday. She only has the 2 grandchildren; my son and my daughter, and this hurts me deeply.
The thing about the will is that I am not getting compensation for caring for her, and as you all know here, I cannot get a job due to this "duty". I have no savings and live week to week, literally. As such, knowing mom won't help me financially, (and she won't; I tried... I told her since I cook every night for her could she kick in a little for grocery and she said, don't cook for me then! I am only one person eating and you cook for 5!) I mean she has thousands.... so basically I have to put my life on hold to care for her. I don't do it because dad asked me to do it. I do it because she's my mom and I do love her and I know she is all alone (she reminds me constantly).... it is now 12:21 here, and I haven't called her yet. I feel like a bad daughter because I wish today I could just stay home and not call her. Just one day. Then people around me tell me "you'd better enjoy her while you can, because someday you will miss her!!!" and I feel even more awful.
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Nikki she's a pure narcissist as my mother always was and she had so many of the traits you see in your mother but you are totally enabling her. In following your posts I know you're just doing it out of duty and not for financial gain but you mentioned being cut out of the Will. She's likely to do that anyway. It happens frequently that the elder eventually leaves everything to the "golden one" who probably has never lifted a finger to help them.

If you're falling all over yourself so she doesn't cut you out of her Will I'm sure she knows that (in her twisted mind) and will continue to use it as a weapon so she's got you by the short and curlies.
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Pam, thanks for what would be great advice if dealing with a normal aging mom, but mine has already made it crystal clear that she will not make friends, does not want 'strangers', wants to move in with me but wants me to give my teenage kids to their father first, doesn't care if she even SEES the kids anymore because they don't offer to do things for her (it is not enough for them to say hi Grandma, how's it going and hug her).... she has told me she wants ME to go out to dinner with her and leave my family and bf home on weekends. She has told me she wants ME to go on vacation with her! (I haven't had a vacation with my partner or my kids in almost 10 years.....) but mom doesn't want anyone BUT ME. So you see, this is a woman who says "Why doesn't my sister call me...." (sister is a twin and prob has dementia too) rather than just picking up the phone without complaining and calling HER. I think there is narcissism there, and yesterday my mother announced in the car with my 18 year old in the back, "I want ATTENTION!!" and I mean she emphasized that word. And I said mom, I take you out every day. I have to do laundry, make our dinner (I feed her too) and take care of both houses here, give me a break I'm trying... Yet she says, I know you are busy. Maybe I will move away.... Assisted living? Forget it. She will take me out of the will so fast my head will spin, not to mention never speak to me again. I said how about if we get someone in to help you once in awhile? like a companion? She basically said she wants who SHE wants, which is either me, my cousin Linda (who lives out of state), or her twin sister who is 91 years old and lives 5 hours away. That is it as far as who she will 'allow' around.... Argh!
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Nikki, If she is lonely and craving company, she would do well in assisted living. The counselor we had told us to pull back on being mom's entertainment center. We also got mom some celexa for her depressed/angry behavior. Start by getting the Rx, then by taking mom to events at nearby ALF's. Don't tell her where you are going, just take her there for a sing along or easter party. A good facility will welcome her visit and sit her with a friendly person. You back off and let them talk. It works. Mom loves her ALF.
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I also want to point out that I invite her over constantly, but if anyone else is home, she won't come. Go figure. Her own grandkids (teenagers) and she won't hang out here at all. I bring her dinner every night and lately she says, "Have you eaten?" I tell her no, I wanted to bring yours while it was fresh and hot. Then she stares at me and I know she wants me to sit with her while she eats. So I sit there for 20 minutes. She never finishes her dinner anymore and I make small plates for her. Last night I literally had to put the mushrooms and chicken on her fork and hold it and say 3 more bites to her. She picked the food OFF the fork and used her fingers to eat it.
I just don't know anymore.
As far as saying have her come over and eat with the family, well our family doesn't sit at the table all the time. And like I said, unless I am alone here she won't come. (She can't "leave the dog"....)
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All I can tell you is I GET IT. I can't work because my mother needs me (the entertainment committee) to take her on daily outings, even if it means driving to store we were at the week before just to see what "new" came in.... She won't allow anyone else to come in to give me respite. She says everyone is a stranger. Yesterday, 4x, she said to me, (after 3 hours out with her) "It is HARD to be alone. It is very LONELY......" I mean she said it 4x.... over 2 hours. We had been out from 1 - 4pm, and then around 5 - 7 she starts it. I'm at my wits' end so I get it. She is healthy as a horse at 91, but complains and although I have said, 'listen, you need to compare yourself to other 91 year olds.... you are so lucky to have your little dog, your own house across the street from your daughter... you have a built-in pharmacist (me), a cook (me), a finance manager (me), and a chauffer (you guessed it,... me).... So many 91 year olds cannot get out of bed and here you are shopping and out!' But she can't (or won't) look at things on the bright side. Sometimes, I think she CHOOSES to wallow and feel self-pity. I think self-pity is a very comfortable feeling for my mother, and I hate that.
Last night she needed me to run over because the little pup next door came through the fence and was in her backyard so my mom's dog was throwing a fit barking at it. My boyfriend came along to fix mom's ceiling (small problem) and my daughter who is 13 (and her granddaughter) came too. My mother saw my daughter and exclaimed, "What, did you have to bring a parade???" I said what are you talking about? She said, "Everyone is just nosy!"
You can't f-ing win. I'm telling you.
That is how I feel today.
I told her to quit the attitude it was very unbecoming and she said "Don't treat me like a child!!"
Sometimes you have to bite your tongue. Sometimes, you have to eat your whole face to keep from going nuts.
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Is this complaining a new behavior?
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She is trying to maintain the appearance of being totally in charge. This is her pride talking, so let her say what ever she wants. It is also important to relatives back home that you are a good daughter, and "doing your job" means just that. Many people who post here don't even get that much credit from their Mothers. Some are attacked verbally and physically and the patient lies and says they are being abused. You are a good daughter, we can see that.
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