I'm resenting my mom and this nasty disease. How much longer can I take this?

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My 91 year old mom has dementia. She's always been the bossy type and its gotten worse. You can talk back to her and tell her to stop what she's doing and she gets mad. She won't use a cane, that the doctor told her to use, because she doesn't need it! She shuffles her feet when she walks and I have to hang on to her. She also will not use her hearing aids! She doesn't need them! She had them for at least 30 years! She lives in an assisted living home but she depends on me to take her places. Tells me I never should have gotten rid of her car (required by the home when she moved in). Today she was at my house and I had the tv on and even turned it up for her but not like she listens to it at her place. She told me I had it at a whisper! Told her if she'd wear her hearing aids, she'd be able to hear it, we can and we had it turned up louder than normal. All she did today was complain about everything. Later this evening she called me and asked if her tv remote needed new batteries because she had to turn it up a lot. I said if the volume went up, she didn't need batteries, she needed to wear the hearing aids. Oh that went over like a lead balloon. She said "never mind" and hung up on me. She is so stubborn. She's got me in a turmoil all the time. I've had a rough last 8 years myself. I was 57 when my husband had a massive stroke and I had to deal with that and him being in a nursing home and watching over his care and all his health issues he had. He passed away in Jan. 2017, just 2 months after mom was diagnosed with dementia. I've gone from 7 years of hell with him to dealing with her. I resent her at times. I know she didn't ask for this disease but nothing I do ever pleases her. Glad to know its not only me that feels like this. She'll outlive me yet. I don't have a life and haven't for over 8 years. She's always been bossy but she's gotten worse. Always telling everyone what to do. When my grandson came home from school, he was eating a couple of small cookies for a snack. She kept telling him to stop eating them because he was going to ruin his supper (not for another 2 hours). We had a couple of cookies before he came home ourselves. Then after daughter and grandson left for his lessons, guess who was eating more cookies? Mom !! I so wanted to tell her to stop eating them that she was going to ruin her supper. I took her to church with me tonight and all she did was complain about things at church. Plants not getting watered, complain about a previous minister to our current minister (other one has been gone for 5 years). It went on and on. Not taking her again on Wednesday nights. She can't follow along in the program. What am I suppose to do? I hate her at times and I hate this disease.

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Thanks for your input. She makes you feel guilty if you don't do things. I'm going to have to start telling her white lies. I'm not good at lying, never have been. They do have a church bus at her facility to take them to church on Sunday's, but she refuses to use it since we go to the same church. Our church is only a couple of blocks away from where she lives and she has gone there for more than 60 years. Oh, I do take her to do things away from the home. Took her the other day to visit Boystown, a place she worked at back in the 1940's. We had a nice visit there and she was able to reminience. Walked thru their museum. I take her on drives. I won't take her the stores to shop. She thinks she needs all these little knick knacks and junk. She has gotten horrible about that. She use to watch her money, because she never had that much but now she says "I don't go anywhere to spend any" so she thinks its ok to buy everything she sees. Oh well, I wish there was some way to prevent anyone else from getting this dreadful disease. It's not easy for everyone. I get it worse because I only have one sibling and he doesn't live right in town. So she relies on me so much, too much.
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Reply to slkanger
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I think it is okay to feel how you feel and you have to let those feelings out into the universe even if it is typing them out on this site. You still have to just let them go.

And it might sound harsh what @jeannegibbs said, but it sounds like she's (he's?) "been there", and for every problem there is a solution.
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Reply to MumsHelper
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Just hugs. It's okay, you know. It's okay to feel how you feel.

That's really not very long you've given yourself to get past your husband's long suffering and passing away, it occurs to me. Just over a year, fifteen months.

No way you could get away, take a proper break, go on retreat, anything to get some real thinking time to yourself?
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Can't your mom eat cookies right before dinner in her assisted living facility? I have to agree with jeannegibbs. There's no reason why you need to spend so much time with your mom since she has her own apartment. If she irritates you during church, don't take her. If your TV isn't loud enough for her take her home and let her turn up her own TV to ear splitting levels (I went through this with my dad and I ended up getting him a headset and it was such a blessing).

After caring for your husband for so long I'm not surprised that you have these resentments against your mom. That's too much care giving. If you want a life for yourself you can have it! You are not obligated to spend your life caring for your mother. You can step away from the turmoil. Your mother isn't going to change. If you want things to change it's up to you to make those changes.

As you're finding out it is useless to argue with someone who has dementia. They don't have the capability to reason or to see reason. The hearing aids, the batteries in the remote.....it's just a waste of time to try and reason with her.

Spend less time with your mom and more time doing things that you enjoy.
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Reply to Eyerishlass
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She's stubborn. Hmm ... that apple didn't fall far from the tree, eh? She keeps saying she needs things loud and you keep saying she needs to wear her hearing aides. Doesn't sound to me like that will get resolved soon!

Even with his hearing aids in my husband needed the tv volume way too high for my comfort. I bought a wireless headset. Saved our marriage. He didn't like it at first but when he discovered he could wear it into the bathroom and not miss any dialog or sports calls he decided he loved it!

I guess I don't even understand why your mom is at your house watching tv. She can watch tv in her care facility, can't she? At your house would she like to poke around in the garden with you, or bake some cookies, or go to neighborhood garage sales ... generally do things she can't in her facility? Watching tv seems like a waste of an opportunity. How about having her over less often, but having something special planned for those times. My mother loved to browse around a flower nursery. I pushed her in her wheelchair. Not much to argue about in that setting!

Try to focus on the real cause of your resentment. It's the disease! She isn't reasonable because she no longer has the capacity to reason. Her brain is broken. Keep that firmly at the front of you mind!

Protect yourself from over-exposure to her defective reasoning and inappropriate responses. Indeed, why take her to Wednesday services? They don't seem to please her and they worry you. The care center most certainly has several kinds of religious services each week. Perhaps you could attend once in a while with her, at her place, and she can go on her own as often as she wants to, or not.

Reduce the number of times you are with her, and when you are with her, let all that complaining roll right off your back. Her brain is broken, poor thing!

Often a good way to reduce conflict with those who have dementia is just to go along with them. "Hmm. I don't think the batteries would be bad already, but next time an aide is in your room, ask if the maintenance person could check them for you. Or call the desk and ask if the maintenance person could be sent to your room." or "Gee, that is tough, Mom. Next time I come I'll show you a picture of a nice headset that will put the volume right in your ear. Maybe that would be a nice solution!" Is there really any point in arguing about the hearing aids? Her brain is broken. In her limited view of reality she doesn't need them.

You say, " I don't have a life and haven't for over 8 years." That is true and that is sad! Remember that it was your husband's needs, not your mom's that tied up your life for 7 years. And she is being cared for by others now, so you really can control how much of your life you will give up. And you should! Just because she is in a facility doesn't mean you don't have interactions or that you don't still care for her. But you can decide when and what those interactions are. It is really kinder to limit them and and have both of you enjoy them, than to have more but be resentful.

It is hard to have a parent with dementia no matter what. But to be dealing with this after a grueling 7-year stretch of caregiving your husband is beyond hard. My heart goes out to you.
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