I've put my life on hold to take full care of my mom, after years of being guilted and forced into it. I'm in my early 30s and her only daughter. She is 58 yrs old, divorced, so the burden falls purely on me. Other family members who helped her when I was a teenager and in college have all stopped and refuse to help now. She is so difficult because she has Paranoid Schizophrenia, and she is also disabled from Multiple Sclerosis. She's been living in my apartment for about a year, and it's been absolute hell. She often refuses care and refuses to leave my home for any care facilities. I need her to leave so I can have a life. I'd like to go back to school, get back to work, continue improving my life, get married, have kids, etc. I can't do any of this with her here. I'm struggling with my own mental health issues from a lifetime of dealing with a mentally ill mom. I've stopped working and stopped therapy so that I can take care of her. My independence is gone. She is emotionally draining and very negative. When I leave the apartment, she calls me nonstop.

Home health care is not good enough and won't work for me or her, because Medicaid is too expensive (her SSDI is higher than the maximum). Rather than pay for someone else to care for her, I've taken the bullet and used her SSDI to pay the rent, utilities, food, and borrowed money. The only way this can work is if she is able to use her income towards a facility. This way I can go back to my life, she can get better care, and she will better qualify for any benefits. I'm just trying to find out how to get her to want to leave. She often manipulates me and tries to treat me like a child when I bring up her needing to leave, by saying I'm being disrespectful and a bad daughter.

She doesn't really understand that this is my apartment. She thinks that she can go live in an expensive condo by herself when she feels like it. She's in denial about her illness. She often hears voices, has paranoid thoughts. Sometimes she refuses to eat because she thinks I've put something bad in the food, even if I eat with her. I'm at a loss. I've been to doctors with her, I've had social workers and therapists come here, she's been in two psychiatric hospitals over the past 15 years, and most of her MS issues go unaddressed because her mental illness guides most of her thinking. What am I supposed to do? Sometimes I think the only thing I could do is take her to an emergency room for psychiatric care, but when they release her or if she refuses medication, I'm back at square one. It feels like I have no options. And I have no social or case worker who's working with me on this. 2 years ago I tried to get guardianship, which fell through because my mom's MS is always taken into consideration before her Schizophrenia. They just see her as someone in a wheelchair, not someone who has majorly messed up her life dozens of times due to her mental illness (finances, housing, etc). I've spent months calling numbers, researching, and no one has given concrete answers. I don't know what to do, but I need to do something because I'm starting to slip into a deep depression. I worry a lot about my future. I'm burnt out because there's no break. I have basically no friends, no life, just my boyfriend. I need my life back.

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In taking your mom to the ER you're not so much going to get her treatment as you are going for a consultation with a social worker. When you arrive request a social worker and tell the social worker that you can't take your mom home, that she needs to be placed in a facility.

Often family waits for an emergency so they can take their loved one to the ER for these specific services and to get their loved one admitted to a facility.
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Thank you for your response. I didn't realize how much of a novel I wrote there. Thanks for taking the time to read it. I agree with your advice, I'm in NYC. I'm hoping they have the same laws. People I've spoken on the phone for different agencies have been really unhelpful. She refuses to see a psychiatrist so she doesn't have one. She's been moved around to different states in the past by other family members. They're very religious so it's been a struggle to get them to recognize what's happening with her. It does seem like I have to take her to ER, but I worry she'll refuse treatment. I feel guilty and it is a huge burden to have someone noncompliant, but I also wants what's best for her.
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Ahmijoy Sep 2018
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I’m stating the obvious, but Mom has got to go. By allowing her to control your life, you are enabling her. It doesn’t matter what she says or thinks she can do. She needs to go. In all honesty, she should probably be in a psychiatric facility. She must have doctors and maybe even a psychiatrist? Can they help you? If she is a diagnosed schizophrenic they can’t just ignore it.

As a last resort, you may have to take her to the ER and tell them you can no longer care for her. Refuse to bring her home. She will most likely be Baker Acted and sent to a psychiatric facility for testing.
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