My Mom threatened to kill herself if she has to stay in assisted living. What do I do? - AgingCare.com

My Mom threatened to kill herself if she has to stay in assisted living. What do I do?

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My mom is 63 and has a malignant brain tumor. For 6 months post-diagnosis, she was ok, but she fell off the cliff in August and has needed lots of supervision and help with daily activities. My father is 76 years old with a heart condition, and he could not manage it alone. At first I got them in home aides, but my father found fault with all of them and eventually told the agency to get lost. I was forced travel back and forth hundreds of miles to take care of every emergency, and eventually I just took FMLA leave to take care of my mom for 8 weeks. When I was close to running out of FMLA, I asked my mom if she wanted me to quit my job, or if she wanted to go to assisted living in my town. She chose the latter. I drove my mom 400 miles to an assisted living place 10 minutes from my place.

The first two weeks were great. I was there everyday 3-4 hours after work, and we spent the weekends going on trips and out to eat. My mom is the only resident with someone visiting everyday. But my mom has lately been very difficult and no longer wants to stay there. The assisted living was supposed to be temporary until I could relocate my father as well, but he has made no indication of his willingness to come. He is panicking over his heart condition, which has gotten worse, and he is on Xanax and an antidepressant. I think if he moved, he wouldn't be any help and would just be worse. If I were to try to take care of her on my own, I would need a new place, because I am 27 years old and rent an apartment with roommates my age. I would also need a sitter or CNA to watch her. I did the math, and the money my parents are spending on her assisted living would cover the equivalent of 55 hours a week at $18/hour for a home aide, which would mean I could only go to work and one shopping trip a weekend. I would have zero time for myself or to see friends, and I'm convinced I would completely burn out in a few months between the stress of managing my mom's care by myself and the stress of my job.

I explained this to my mom, and she said she will kill herself if she can't live with me. I lost my cool and told her that she is manipulating me and isn't thankful for all I've done since her diagnosis, and all I continue to do, and how other residents have no visitors but have managed to be there for years. All of the old issues I had with my parents came boiling to the surface. Then I realized I'm screaming at my terminally ill mom who has brain cancer and no hair and can barely walk, and I wanted to die from the guilt. I feel like a monster.

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she is still so young,63 is not what most assisted living facilities are full of. maybe she can find a purpose by helping just one resident if its just sitting and talking w/someone that needs a friendly face. not sure what your mom's limitations are but since she is only 10 mins away keep visiting but take some time for yourself and do not go every day but you can still call her the days you don't to say hi.
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My mother is much the same as what your saying here,except for threatening to kill herself. Try to remember that she has tunnel vision and reminding her of all the sacrifices you have made will only leave you frustrated and exhausted and used. Helping sometimes turns into hindering by being there all of the time and blocking her from getting involved with her surroundings and social interactions that could greatly improve her outlook on life. Backing off is not neglecting her, your self preservation is at stake! She will be fine without seeing you every day and probably won't react as badly as you are anticipating. You will be helping her to depend on herself a little more instead. You will be amazed at how much stronger both of you will become.
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Stop going to see her every day. Cut it back to once a week, visit no more than an hour. Let them medicate her moods. I have been where you are. Brain cancer can only drag you down if you let it. Back away. Save your self. My prayers go with you.
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wtf is she gonna kill herself with , a sippy cup ?
id need the answer to that before i could even comment further . im a real one tracker .
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I have the same question as ba8alou about what her prognosis is. If she is well enough to interact with the other residents at the AL place, it may help if you do not come by as often. Maybe you can talk to the management at the facility about getting your mother more involved in the activities. Since you visit every day, she may not feel the need to seek out other friends. Friends are what make places enjoyable... or at least bearable.

Whatever you do, don't let her blackmail you emotionally into a bad decision. I have a feeling that you know letting her have her way will devastate your own life. Do you think she is serious with her threats or is she just putting pressure on you? If you think she is just pressuring, it may help to realize she is using something we call FOG - fear, obligation, guilt. It is not fair to you at all.

Finally I want to mention that you are in critical years of your life. These are the years that people marry, have children, and build careers. You can help your parents, but you also have to make sure you do not hurt yourself while doing it. There are so many options for ways to help, but your parents seem to be working against anything helpful you do. From what I can see, you are doing everything right, so stick to your plans.

The suicide threat is so unfair. If it wasn't serious, it was indeed cruel. If it was serious, call 911 using your judgment since you know her prognosis.
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I am glad that you did not quit your job. You are too young to afford to quit your job and it is unfair of your mother to expect 24/7 care from you.
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You are not a monster and you have very good reasons for not letting your mother come live with you. I think she needs to be evaluated for depression. If I were dying like she is, I would be depressed. What does she think that she has to gain by coming to live with you? The threat to kill herself unless she has her way does sound manipulative. I wish you the best.
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What is your mom's prognosis? Is she terminal? Is it time to call hospice? Is she on antidepressants? I'm sorry to ask so many questions. I understand that you feel terrible. But imo, unless your mom only has weeks to live her request does not aound reasonable.
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