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I think we sometimes enable elders to continue with unrealistic lives. I had both parents, three states away, depending on me to keep them in their falling down home. We had every elder issue and crisis you can imagine. They damn near killed me.

long story but I finally got them in assisted living. I had to do a total tough love thing on mom. Told her that I can’t do this anymore. She needs to be here where she’s safe and taken care of.

Mom died 4 months later. I moved dad to a nursing home near me recently. It’s much easier now.

If you are to survive your mom is going to have to make some changes she doesn’t like. Our rolls reverse. You need to be in charge now whether mom likes it or not.

Sorry to be so blunt. Good luck to you.
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Reply to Windyridge
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I think the only answer is to tell her that you can no longer do this. That she will have to make other arrangements, or consider this move. It is that simple. And as long as you "find a way " to do this, I would imagine that she will allow you to find a way. As a nurse, the lower leg circulation bypasses scared me more than any other with complications often requiring ongoing hospitalizations either due to problems with the bypass or with blood thinner complications; I will tell you that I have been retired now nearly two decades, so would imagine things are better now, but I personally would not do this surgery unless gangrene was certain otherwise. You could be looking at being there full time if you do not get her moved more near before more surgeries. Good luck.
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Reply to AlvaDeer
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NearButNotClose Mar 20, 2020
Wow - thanks for that information about the leg bypass. Mom had a cardiac cath today, and they were unable to place any stents. At 86, her interventional cardio guy said, "We do not do 2nd heart bypasses", but is referring her to a cardiologist?
It is so hard, not to be guilted into doing ONE MORE THING, ONE MORE TIME... And add to that coronavirus issue...
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Yes and no.

Yes, in that your mother likes her life and you are expecting her to change - what? - 90% of it for a completely different life, to make your life easier.

No, in that your mother takes it for granted that you can drop everything and take chunks out of your routine. To "be there."

But she doesn't need *you* to be there, she just needs somebody capable and pleasant to provide whatever type of support fits a given situation. Talk to her about that, and look for resources. Being independent means you solve your own problems without imposing excessively on other people.

You could see her more frequently, you could make sure she is getting what she needs. But you couldn't (and trust me, you wouldn't want to) provide her with a social life, or her familiar environment, or the home she's made her own, or the people she's used to. It's not just her doctor, her friends - it's the people she nods to, the faces she sees day in day out, the store layouts, the landmarks.

Don't carry on doing more than you're happy with and resenting it. Help her find alternative support structures; and by all means offer the IL community as an option - just don't push it on her.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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NearButNotClose Mar 20, 2020
Thank you for your comments. I agree with some, and not with others,..
She does expect ME to be there. As she once told me, "The purpose of having children, is to have someone take care of you in your old age". Of course, in her day, parents passed in their 60s or at most in their 70s.
But you are correct that I may expect too much: I expect her to move to me, if she expects that level of care from me... I have been involved in her care (to a lesser extent for nearly 20 years)... I am burned out, and trying to keep doing what I is now too much...
So I guess we both need to compromise. If she wants to stay where she is, then she needs to seek other (paid) caregivers... Her neighbors have already expressed "burnout" with her expectations.
I need to accept she wants to be where she is, and accept she is doing it "her way"... My visits should be social, but they are not going to be more frequent. I think I mentioned, I am tired of driving and taking 3 days off for a visit...
Thanks for you comments - I will try the middle road...
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Your mom can "expect" all she wants to but in the end, only you control your actions and behaviors.

You have no obligation, legal or moral, to endanger your livelihood, your marriage or your mental or physical health to meet her demands that you be present when she is having a procedure. You are allowed to say "no mom, that doesn't work for me".

I feel sorry for anyone whose reason for having children was so they would have old age care.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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I agree with Alva. Your mother is fortunate that she can afford to pay for various forms of care. From what I have learned, your responsibility is to assess what you are able and want to do for your mother. Clarify that for yourself in your own mind. Then let her know what you are able to do and what you are not able to do. She then can choose to hire a caretaker in her area or move closer to you. And that is her choice. If she chooses to do neither, it is not your fault or responsibility. The hardest part of establishing boundaries is communicating them for the first time because we don't want to feel rejection or disappointment from our parent. But if you don't get defensive and communicate in a kind way, you may find that your needs are respected. In any case, you are not unreasonable to set boundaries.
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Reply to DofNPDmother
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NearButNotClose Mar 20, 2020
Perfect. I have always been bad at establishing boundaries! That is on me. I need to clarify what I can and cannot do, without impacting my own health, marriage and sanity... I will try also to accept that she will do what she needs to do...
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You're hardly being unreasonable. Have you talked to your mother about moving to the AL? She might be more receptive than you think.
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Reply to LoopyLoo
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NearButNotClose Mar 20, 2020
She does not want to be "warehoused"... I am going to accept that she is still competent, and let myself off the hook. I might be surprised how resourceful she can be?
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Perhaps if you could introduce her to some of the others in the facility close to you - over a few visits - introduce her to others through senior connections, church of her preference - and then she would establish a community where she wouldn't feel alone. Have her for a visit and see how she can fit into her "possible" new surroundings.
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Reply to LNReason
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NearButNotClose Mar 20, 2020
HA - good idea, but when she was here for Thanksgiving, I scheduled some tours. She managed to be late enough to destroy the entire schedule. I guess I need to hear her message :-). And I need to hear my message, I cannot do all of this.
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Medical people very good at guilting, especially when they have no iron in the fire....
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