My husband, my 9 year old and myself are living with my Mom. How can I keep my family together?


The stress is overwhelming and intense. We live together but emotions run high, my son acts out, my husband misses attention and my mother demands attention. I am in the middle and would like to find some useful strategies on how for all to co-habituate. We are financially unable to move out and mom doesn't qualify to go to a nursing home (she supposedly makes too much $). What strategies have worked for you? Thanks!

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It is good that you are on top of your situation "We live together but emotions run high, my son acts out, my husband misses attention and my mother demands attention." I read a terrible story once where the wife was aware that life with her husband was not going well with her giving full time to her demanding mother, but she chose to ignore that awareness as well as she chose to ignore her awareness that divorce was possible with the way she was living which she blamed on her demanding mom, and is now heading for a divorce.

Does your husband work? How is your nine year old doing in school? Are you doing anything about taking care of yourself?

How long have ya'll been living with your mother?

I wish you well in dealing with this and recommend facing the music soon before it turns to a sour tune.
Helpful Answer (1)

You and husband get together and make plans together to visit an estate planner and an area agency on aging together to find out what your options are. If she ever becomes abusive to your 9 year old you will need to have an immediate alternative plan in place for sure. Maybe there is a way to set limits on Mom's demands for attention and get enough help so you have time for yourself snd your family has time to be a family, maybe some caregiver counseling and education for all could make a difference, but, also face the possibiity you may simply NOT be able to go on co-habitating with her. Don't keep trying to do the impossible. if you need a cuationary tale, read this thread: It is good that you recognize this level of stress is unsustainable for the long haul and something has to give before you do.
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How long have you lived in your mother's house? How much of that has included caregiving for her?

When did she have her stroke? Does she have any signs of vascular dementia?

Who in this household goes out to work?

Babalou's response is a good one. Having additional information about your situation might result in additional insights for you.
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Hi Babalou,
Thank you for your response and insight. I definitely think mom will be needing skilled nursing care within the next year for sure. I'm looking into pulling resources (community and private) so that we can create a financial plan for us. It's overwhelming...I guess I know what one of my New Year's resolution will be. Thanks.
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Does your mom NEED skilled nursing care? That requires three shifts of professionals. So if you're trying to do that in addition to everything else, you've got an over full plate.

Everyone needs to be helping out here. 9 year olds can pick up their toys, make their bed and set the table. Husband can clear and do dishes while you help with homework. Can mom fold laundry, do some dusting? Is there adult daycare nearby for a few days a week?

You also need to be working on a plan for financial independence for your family. You might talk to an eldercare attorney about qualifying mom for Medicaid. At some point, she may need more care than you can give.
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