My Mom, whose mind is sharp otherwise, tells the same stories that she's upset about day after day. Why?

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She's 88-yrs-old and blames everybody for her problems. She says that her housekeeper cut her bushes too short and killed them when actually she went away and they weren't watered. I live 30 miles away and help take care of my severely autistic grandson several days a week yet I go there once a week unless I can't. But she accuses me of going every other week, that I don't care. She has always put herself 1st and if it weren't for my grandmother, we would have been neglected. Now she expects me to dote on her and I resent it. I'll soon be 65 and in pain much of the time. I often neglect my husband and house to go down there. I'm sick of this but morally obligated. Thank you all for listening. Any advice?

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So I thought I gave a response to your answer about "Sand boy". Here's my response about Riley.
Life of Riley....
I found two different origins for that expression:

Meaning: An easy and pleasant life.

Origin
The phrase originated with the Irish/American soldiers in the US Army during WWI. The first known citation is in a letter from a Private Walter J. Kennedy, stationed at Camp Dix, New Jersey, which was published in The Syracuse Herald on 29th June 1918. The piece was headed "Great Life, Writes Soldier at Camp":
"This is surely one great life." writes Kennedy. "We call it the life of Riley. We are having fine eats, are in a great detachment and the experience one gets is fine."
Later that year, on 22nd October, The Bridgeport Telegram published a letter from Private Samuel S. Polley, 102 Regiment, stationed in France.
"They [German officers] must have led the life of Reilly as we caught them all asleep in beds..."
Who Riley (or Reilly, or Reiley) was isn’t clear. If he had been a known individual then it surely would have been recorded. The lack of any such records points to the name being chosen as that of a generic Irishman, much as Paddy is used now.
The phrase may have been brought to America by Irish immigrants, although there’s no known use of it in Ireland prior to 1918, or, more likely, it originated in the Irish community in the USA. It reached the wider public via the 1919 song by Howard Pease - My name is Kelly:
Faith and my name is Michael K.,
but I’m living the life of Reiley just the same.

phrases.uk/
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The second one that I found said:

Origin

The name Riley is of Irish and Gaelic origin. It means Valiant and Courageous.

The meaning behind the name Riley begins when the name originally appeared in Gaelic as O’Raghailligh, which means descendant of Raghallach.

Living the Life of Riley

Living the Life of Riley" suggest an ideal life of prosperity and contentment, possibly living on someone else’s money, time or work. Rather than a negative freeloading or gold digging aspect, it instead implies that someone is kept or advantaged. This expression was popular in the 1880s a time when James Whitcomb Riley’s Poems depicted the comforts of a prosperous home life, but it could have an Irish origin: After the Riley clan consolidated its hold on country caravan, they minted their own money accepted as legal tender even in England. These coins called O’Rileys and Reillys became synonymous with a monied person and a gentleman freely spending was "living on his Reillys".
I like the 2nd answer the best.
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Country mouse. ..I'm so glad you cleared this up for me. Is everybody on this board from England?
There was a TV show called "The Life Of Riley". I don't know if that's where the saying came from. But I'll do the research since you so kindly did it for me.
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Mom passed away March 12. My dad had already isolated the both of them before she passed away. Well, even before she was diagnosed last year. Unless, my mom saw someone at Walmart or at the rare visit to a restaurant, she didn't see her friends because the past couple years, she didn't even have a car. I'm wondering now about a lot of things that happened over the years and why. My dad was eight years Older than my mom, so I'm sure he thought he was going to go first. With diagnosis of ovarian cancer in stage 4, I prepared for what I knew was going to happen, but they didn't. It also did not help that they would not educate themselves about the disease or treatment. I am very sure that they both thought that chemo was like penicillin. You took it and it cured you without too much trouble.
Anyway, thanks to my mom, my dad does have a large support base. people visit every week, some of them every day. My Uncle, my mom's brother is a Methodist pastor and he visits everyday, but if my uncle knew what my dad said about him behind his back, I'm not so sure that would happen. Neighbors bring in food and sit for a while. People invite him to go places, and he doesn't accept the invitations because he says he can't go without my mom now or because people drink or smoke or cuss, etc and that's not being good Christians. His favorite saying now is, that it's nice to have everyone around, but it's not the same as my mom's company and he will say that to you too. I find myself calling people and apologizing for his attitude and the rude things he says or might say.
As for the guilt trip, I know he feels that we should take him in or we should move in there. he says he can't live in the house anymore, but can't bear to sell it. Like I said, he is in great health all the way around, financially too, but wants someone to take care of him like my mom did. When I visit, I cook, clean the house, etc. My dad sits and reads the paper while I do all that. He has even wanted me to wear my mom's clothes and has called me by her name a couple of times. I've reminded him that I'm his daughter and not his wife. My brother and I have long since made our own homes and cannot move back there. I have my family here with my husband's family and a job prospect back in TX. My brother lives in southern VA and they both work too. And we have our own friends that we go out with. My friends get criticized too and my dad always asks me why I do things with them. Like I said, I see some similarities now with how my mom and dad interacted and how he's treating me. I know it's because he's of a different generation and back then, women did everything for their men and now he doesn't have that. I am the only women he knows now and so, I guess he's chosen me to replace my mother. I feel like I'm supposed to drop everything and everyone here at my home and go down there to live with him because that's what he wants. My mom would be very, very angry if she knew how he was behaving and treating people. She was the exact opposite.
Thanks for your reply. It's really hard for me to deal with him and his meanness at times as I have a tendency to "fight back" when being bossed around or being spoken to rudely. I remember now, several arguments between my mom and dad about stuff as mom would fight back when she was younger. As she got older, she sort of lost her spunk or maybe just decided to put up with it. I can't do that as I don't have to deal with that with my husband.
I've tried to talk my dad into counseling, but he says that the hospice nurse that visits him every two weeks (they still check on him too), says that he is still in the grieving process and she is probably right. It's his awful attitude that I'm thinking is NOT part of the grief. I'm quite sure, he thought this way all his life and now that my mom is gone, there is no one who will put up with his bad behavior and rather severe criticism.
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How recently, Val? (and I'm sorry for your loss, too)

Your father has essentially lost his entire life support system, would you agree? It'll take quite a while to rebuild one for him. Key thing to grasp is that you and your brother couldn't do it by yourselves if you wanted to. Confer, the two of you, about a manageable calling and visiting schedule to share; get in touch with your father's church's pastor and ask for help; make sure he has all the information he needs about local services and support groups so that he can change his mind if he will; make sure his PCP/GP is aware that he is isolating himself; in short - delegate, delegate, delegate.

What is he expecting of the two of you that you feel is aimed at guilt-tripping?
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This is a great forum. I see that the NPD might be something here. My mom passed away recently and besides depression, my dad has been guilt tripping my brother and I -severely. He is 82, has always been very active, great health, drives, etc. Brother lives six hours away, I live 2. He is just not getting over my mom. She did everything for him including being his only friend. She had lots of friends. He had none because he found fault with everyone and told them so. No one wants to be around him including me & my brother because he is the same way with us. He is even worse now that mom is gone. Although I have no problem with religion, (I'm just not that religious), he is very religious and applies judgments of people according to what he studies and interpretes. Youch! It can be bad! I feel bad that he has no friends now at a time when he needs them, but he has chased them all off. He won't go to SR. Citizens, VFW (He's a Korean vet), or anything like that to socialize. I think going to church just gives him ammo to criticize people. I think this does sound like what was being discussed at first the NPD and I need to look into that. Thank you for the info and the chance to vent a little.
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Who needs Brewer's when the internet is right there? Here we are, from The Guardian's Notes & Queries section…

SEMANTIC ENIGMAS

What is a sandboy and why are they happy?
Megan Barford, Hebden Bridge, UK
Publicans used to spread sand on bar floors to catch slops, spills, spit and so on. The sand was delivered by sandboys. Hauling sand was thirsty work, and they were part paid in drink. This kept them merry. And, anyway, happy was the man who got free booze.
Peter Brooke, By Kinmuck, Scotland
Sandboy: As happy as a sandboy is an expression which implies blissful contentment. I believe that the saying is truly Bristolian in origin. On Bathurst basin, in the City centre is the long established Ostrich Inn. The Inn is immediately adjacent to the Redcliff caves which, in their day, were a prime source of sand. Past landlords of the Inn used to send little boys ie Sandboys into the caves to collect sand to spread on the floor of the Inn to soak up the beer and ale droppings (much like butchers used to put sawdust on the floor of their shops). The Sandboys were paid for their efforts in beer. They were indeed happy. I hope I have filled you with knowledge, I wish someday to be a sandboy myself!
Matthew Johnson , Leicester, UK
The version I heard involved sandboys sweeping up soiled sand and finding loose change among the detritus. Which they kept. And it made them happy. Well, who wouldn't?
Alasdair Patrick, California, USA


Which leads us on to ask who was Riley and what was so great about his life..?
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Um. Now that you mention it, I haven't the first idea what a sand boy is. Someone who is very contented, would make sense? I don't even know where the expression came from - I shall go and look it up in Brewer's.

A good yelling match, provided it is broadly equal, is healthy. And think how pleased your neighbours will be to have something to talk about besides the economy.
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Hahaha. Well she's been at my house for over a week. It's been very. ..explosive at times, I'm embarrassed to say. Things have been better for the past two days and she's going home tomorrow. She's gotten to see how very difficult things are around here and I've told her that I'm definitely going to have to cut way back on my visits with my grandson starting summer vacation. For the time being she said she can understand it. We'll see how long it lasts. My mother has a selective memory. I have to say that when she does a 360 like this I begin to feel bad for getting upset with her.
By the way, what's a Sand boy?
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Might as well be hung for a sheep as a lamb, mightn't you? If your mother claims you visit her only - only! - every other week, well, why not make it so? Give her something to complain about. She'll be as happy as a sand boy.

Any grief about that, by the way, and you could always cut it back to every third week...
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Thank you. I'll check it out.
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