How do I handle the guilt?

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Here goes, I am at my wits end. My mother is 72 and fairly good health. I tried to help her and my father in anything they needed help with but it was just never enough. What I get is guilt trips if I don't rearrange my schedule to accommodate hers. She tells me she has breast cancer then the following week she doesn't she has every ailment that someone else has but of course much worse. She doesn't like anybody. She won't let nurses in the house to care for my father she needs to be in everyones business and then has something bad to say about everyone. She dislikes my friends. She goes to the Drs and everytime she comes out she can't stand the Dr she can't stand her Psychiatrist She was asked not to come back to a hospital that she was in because of how she treated the Drs and Nurses and when I try to reason with her as to how we can get her help with the way she feels she says I have the problem not her. Then I take time away which she hates and she lets me know it but I do it anyways with total guilt because she makes sure that she tells me I don't care for her or my father. So I just don't know how to handle this. Thereis so much more. Any suggestions ?

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Lisa, is your father in good health? Does he drive? Could he occasionally meet you somewhere for a beer or an ice cream sundae? It would be a shame to lose contact with your father because of your mother's apparent mental illness.

If your mother is interfering with your father getting health services he needs, I would report that to his doctor.

Keep doing what you are doing -- take time away, EXCEPT stop feeling guilty for it. You did not cause your mother's mental health issues. Apparently no one can do anything right for her. Why should you be different? But this is Not Your Fault! You have every right to protect yourself from her abusive behavior.She has actually been banned from a hospital because of her behavior! Clearly this is not about you and certainly not your fault. I don't suggest totally banning her from your life. But reducing contact to the minimum you can without abandoning your father sounds like a good plan to me.

When you are visiting her it is OK to leave if you need to. Give her one warning. "Mother, I'm not here to listen to you criticize me. Let's talk about something pleasant, or I'll leave." Then leave if she is relentless. "I'll come back next week. Maybe you'll be in a more pleasant mood then." Just because she buys you a guilt ticket doesn't mean you have to take the trip.
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There is a book "Boundaries" by Cloud and Townsend that is a great support for someone who is dealing with a mentally ill loved one who is demanding.

You ARE allowed to say "No Mother, that is not a convenient appointment for me; would you like me to call the doctor's office to change it or will you do it yourself? These are the times I can be available. And of course, you could call a cab or use the local elder transport service".

If this is met with howls of protest about "honor thy father and mother" or "you don't love me anymore", treat it exactly the way you would a temper tantrum from a two year old.

Turn and walk away. You can't "fix" what is wrong with your mom. But you CAN and SHOULD protect yourself.
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Lisa, you seem to be asking what sort of mental illness your mom has. Start by reading a bit about Borderline Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

It's NOT you!

Do you have a mental health provider you see ? That you be helpful in learning how to maintain boundaries and make healthy choices about how much exposure you want to your toxic mother.
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So, she tells you that you are an unworthy daughter. That doesn't make it true, dear.

You have done far more than your siblings, and more than most of us would have.

Your dad is an adult and can make choices. You can too.

You can choose to take yourself out of an abusive relationship. You can choose to set boundaries.
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No. Not really. It sounds totally unreasonable. Do you have a better relationship with your father? Does he need protection from her? Do you have siblings who do better with her? Does she have friends? Has she always been more or less this same person? I'm sorry. I think I would give her a lot of space. If you can see your father without her interference then do so. You may have to wait her out. Sooner or later her unknown condition will advance and hopefully you will be better able to help her. Give us more information and perhaps someone will have better advice.
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I think I can and I'm going to try my best to do whats right for my family and myself.
Wish me luck and again thank you !
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"Oh dear, mom. Would you like me to call 911?" Is the appropriate response to chest pains.

" Coming over" will do nothing for her chest pain, and you are within your rights to point that out to her.

I'm glad you are able to take some steps toward boundary setting!
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You’re mother is a classic manipulator. Does she have a personality disorder...who knows? But her behavior continues because she is getting the responses and attention she wants. Lisa dear, this is one of the hardest things to go through is dealing with a parent who has become the child in behavior and expects you to be the parent. This is not the natural order of things. Firstly, realize as many have said here you are not responsible for her perceived injustices or hateful behavior. And guilt has no room in your vocabulary. Look up guilt...and see if it applies. Likely it does not. One problem is she has no respect for you and you don’t have good boundaries. That book will be helpful. Also I highly suggest you find a therapist to help you with strategies. Don’t let this affect your mental health. You are valuable no matter what she says. She sounds like a very unhappy and bitter person.
Another suggestion as to the driving. There is a c9mpany that will drive seniors to appointments.  I forget the name of it, but call you Areawide Agency on Aging and find out. You don’t need to be the taxi because SHE made the decision AND choice not to take her driver's test online. Why should she...she has you? Do you see what I mean?  Please let us know how you are as you take steps to deal with this situation. Best!
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Lisa, please continue to come back here anytime you need to vent. It's hard when you've been groomed to be at your mom's beck and call to realize that the issue is with HER and not you. If you can just step back and look at the whole situation, you can see (and you did in your earlier post) that the whole world has a problem dealing with your mom. Your mom is the issue, not you! You are NOT a bad daughter!

What I learned about my parents was that their relationship (and dysfunction) was based on 60 years of them living their own "script". I couldn't step in and change it, as much as I wanted to, to help them both. So your dad has cast his lot with your mom and it will be tough to watch him suffer. But he made that choice when he was younger and healthier and he'll have to live with that decision.

But that doesn't mean you have to take the same unhealthy path of letting your mom mentally abuse you. You've gotten some good suggestions about how to set boundaries for yourself. We care, so let us know how you're doing. What you're going to try to do with your relationship with your mom won't be easy, but we're here to support you.
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If your father is of sound mind, I would suggest that you obtain POA for him if he can sign. They usually have witnessed by as well so no argument with his blindness. You can show your mother you have no other recourse because with all her negativity (possibly unaware as you mentioned she has a psychiatrist). That dr. may need to prescribe mom something or change what she is taking.
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