My elderly parents have always been very bitter, angry, negative people. Growing up in that kind of environment was very difficult and it did its damage, but I learned how to set boundaries, etc. and live my life, while still loving and respecting my parents. My Mom has been diagnosed with a deteriorating spine and no amount of medication/surgery/treatment brings her any pain relief. Physically, she has declined very rapidly and is almost immobile. My Father is her primary caretaker. My Father is even more bitter and negative than my Mother. Between the two of them, the negativity and complaining is constant. How do I handle entire phone calls/visits/daily emails reporting every ache and pain and reliving all that has ever gone wrong in their lives? I am heartbroken that my Mom is living with so much pain and I am at a loss as to what to say and do anymore. I find myself distancing myself slightly, because conversations and visits are so draining on me. And, I feel incredibly guilty because I know that one day they will not be here.