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My Mom thinks its acceptable to go everywhere dressed in nightgown. She fell last week and hurt her arm. lucky no cast no surgery she's 74 and a narcissist . Well she plans to wear her nightgowns for the next 4 to 6 weeks. She went to the drs office the drugs store etc in her nightgown and flip flops. This is un acceptable to me. she lives with me my son and my husband and they are VERY uncomfortable with this situation. she can change her jammies and underwear on make her coffee wash her dishes etc......everything but put some real clothes on ??? my mom LOVES SYMPOTHY and I KNOW that's what this is about but it has the OPPOSITE effect I don't have sympathy for her its just making me mad, because I never heard of anyone with a HURT arm staying in their jammies for a month and a half. Its making my husband even madder than me, He KNOWS she's doing it for attention and he's very uncomfortable in his own home. I told her this is un acceptable but she said she doesn't care. What else can I do to get her to put some clothes on ?????

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She may need some dress type clothing such as mou-mou's; 'dresses' may be more comfortable for her. I agree with you it's not really appropriate to be wearing a night gown to town. I like the 'dusters' that snap up the front and see a lot of ladies wearing them, they are especially good to wear at home. What does she say when asked why she dresses that way? Is it because she has difficulty in dressing? If so offer to assist her. Good luck.
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how about comfy jammy pants or yoga pants. Lots of kids walk around outside and go to school in those types of pants. Heck, I would too if I was allowed to at work lol Maybe also get her those slip on sketcher type shoes that are very comfortable and easy to put on but give support.

Don't treat her like a kid. The my house/my rules is ridiculous for an adult. How would you like that if someone said that to you in a house you were living in? Let her be comfortable but just comfortable in public type clothes. I live in yoga pants after work :) My daughter hates it. Too bad lol
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If she really is a narcissist then you need to appeal to her self image. Tell her that someone you know, who wants to remain anonymous, was commenting on how stylish she used to be and was shocked to see her looking so trashy. I would just not take her any place looking like this. I have made my mother change when her clothing did not match ( and my mother always prided herself on being a fashion plate) Good luck.
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So it's only been a week since she fell and hurt her arm. She's probably pretty sore and it does take elderly people longer to recover.

Long before the 6 weeks is up, she may be feeling much better and the nightgown issue won't even be an issue. Is she doing any physical therapy or exercises for her arm? Was it broken? Is it in a bandage or a sling? A couple of years ago I fell and broke my wrist. They did put a metal thing with screws in it and finally a cast. I did do PT and yet the darn thing STILL hurts at times. I have less ROM (range of motion) than before and it's still swollen larger than before. Dr. Doogie Houser (a joke you youngun's may not get) says there is NO reason for it to still hurt and there's nothing he can do. The pain is in my head. Well, no, it's in my wrist, thank you very much. I think I know how it feels. It itches, it aches. I quit mentioning it to anyone because no one cares but me.

Long story to say that no one but your mother knows how she feels. She may even be a little depressed over this incident and others in her life. There have been many changes in her life in the past years that she may be having trouble dealing with. If she feels no one cares, maybe seeing a therapist for some talk therapy will help. The therapist won't be her friend, but he/she will at least be someone to talk to.

Let her wear her nightgown, tell her to put a muumuu over it, though. If she just wears it when she goes out, she won't need but one and it will stay clean. Your husband and son need to tell her individually, not as a group, that it is embarrassing to them to see her in a nightie. That they like it better when she's dressed and able to be around them. She may put more weight in their opinion because they are not YOU, her daughter. If you go someplace, like out to eat, and she wants to go too, tell her if she'll get dressed she can go, otherwise she'll have to stay home. Go someplace nice occasionally without her and she'll learn to put some clothes on and comb her hair. But for a few weeks you may have to help her with some ROM exercises and help her to heal.

Good luck with this. You need to let go of lot of anger before it makes you sick. You cannot change the past. She cannot change the past. No sense in anyone wallering in it.
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I don't think this is unusual. You stated that she hurt her arm last week. You might just have to be patient with her until her condition improves. It may be quite painful at times this early on. I am an RN and have seen many elderly patients with fractures. It can be quite painful for them.
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Thank you everyone for your suggestions. I'll pray for her and me at this point that's all I have. My Mother has been un balanced my whole life . She was a HEAVY drinker for my whole life, up until a health scare last year and she quit cold turkey. To some people this may seem petty. She told me yesterday after I told her 3 times to get dressed ( she changed her jammies and showed me how much movment she has in her arm ?? ) that she feels like no one cares ( because her phone isn't ringing off the hook and I REFUSE to do everything for her because I KNOW shes capable ) and that she feels like a prisoner in prison ( to which I say your free to leave any dam time you want ).This is purely so she can say I cant get dressed because I hurt my arm ( wanna see ) and no one will help me. PURE ATTENTION SEEKING. Shes been nothing but DRAMA since she moved with us and just when we think our situation cant get any crazier something new happens and it does get crazier. I am planning on telling her when she wants me to take her somewhere that they will lock you up in a mental hospital if they see you wandering the streets in your jammies or if you want to stay in your jammies we will move you to a NH and you can wear them the rest of your life if you choose but that my home is NOT a NH. Im sure I have a couple more battles ahead of me THANK YOU ALL for your suggestions as I have NO help in this. friends gone, family gone only me and my poor husband dealing with this every day. I just thank god I had enough guts to tell her months ago her living with us isn't working out and that we got her on that waiting list for an apartment because knowing there might be an end to this nightmare of mine in the next couple of months is the only thing keeping me from not totally cracking up
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That said, even narcissicists need love and attention, not "punishment". A little natural consequences are okay, just be kind.
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Give her the attention she deserves. Send all her pj's out to the laundry. Get her something else to wear, lay it out, dont be home when she gets out of the shower.
Escalate, if she is wandering the parking lot of the store in jammies and cannot find your car, maybe someone will call 911 for a welfare check up on her. Or, to save fire/ambulance from coming out, call 911(police) to find your mother who may be lost after you come back in about an hour, she may get mad enough to stop this behavior. OR, she can get the professional mental assessment she needs. Be brave, do this only as a last resort because something might really be wrong with her and it comes out only expressed as attention seeking.
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Muumuu, patio dresses and those Mexican embroidered shifts are all very comfortable and suitable for outdoor wear.
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Oh, I might add NO ONE should wear flip flops. They are dangerous and horrible for feet and posture.
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You could hide all her jammies except for house coats, perhaps. Does she have dementia? Why is this such an issue? Maybe if you stop talking about what she is wearing and ask her why doesn't she want to put more appropriate clothes on to go out in public then you might have another piece of the puzzle. Let her have her "hurt" arm and in time with all the family relaxing their attitudes, she will change her clothes. She knows your hot buttons apparently. Just ignore her clothes...
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No where in your description did you mention her physical appearance. From personal experience I know that people that tend to be heavy are sometimes uncomfortable in clothing and tend to wear PJ's, robes, etc. because they are loose fitting and comfortable. Sweats are a good idea and some can look very fashionable as casual wear. I also agree that something else may be going on upstairs. A visit to her Dr. with your concerns is warranted. If it is not mental, she is expressing her control mode and you and your husband need to let her know that is your home, your rules. Do not back down, if for no other reason, to save your own mental health. If she is eligible for a NH or ALF do not use that only as a hollow threat, follow through, as she will catch on and no behavior change will happen. When parents become dependent and mentally incapable, roles of parents and children reverse. Probably one of the hardest realities adult children have to accept and deal with. Some better than others.
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Dusters are just as bad. If they're short ones, like the cute summer dusters for example. If she bends over, you'll all know what color underpants she has on.

If possible (through either cunning or deceit), switch to PJs. If she fell, it could be that PJs are safer. You're less likely to step on them when going up-and-down steps. You're less likely to get tangled in them.
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Well! Since she refuses to get dressed, ignores everything you say and is perfectly capable of taking care of herself, you and your husband need to make this announcement together. Tell her that her strange, outlandish behavior is indicative of a mental disturbance, that what she's doing is totally inappropriate and will no longer be tolerated.

Say that since the only place you're allowed to wear nightgowns or pajamas all day is in a nursing home, that it is obvious to the two of you that a nursing home is where she needs to go. Say "You have ten minutes to put on your clothes and behave rationally or the two of you will immediately begin a search of nursing homes and you won't be put on a waiting list, that the first home you call that has a bed available is where you'll take her.

The threat of a nursing home ought to do it, but you have to mean it. She's being extremely disrespectful to the two of you and I'm sure it makes your son very uncomfortable to have her running around in her nightclothes. Wearing her nightclothes in public could get her picked up for indecent exposure.

Remind yourselves that she's not in charge, the two of you are. You need to remind yourself of this fact as you confront her. And by the way, it would be even more effective if you have a list of nursing homes to hand her when you have this discussion - with the ones you've chosen checked off.

Tell her she has ten minutes, no more to get dressed in street clothes and that wearing her nightclothes around the house during the day and to stores is absolutely forbidden "or else...".

Your mother-in-law is acting like a spoiled brat - show her there are negative consequences for her behavior. Good luck!
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I agree. With the last one dusters and slipons she will be very happy toss her PJs how ever be ready to confront her if she has a fit over where her PJs are you don't toss them merely pack them away that will also get her on the hop to get out where she can't get them tell her you your husband and son all feel more comfortable with here where I ng the dusters 24/7 then PJs because she won't dress in reguarl clothing you do not say if you are a follower of the bible but what it says is when in old days all where invited to weddings all where given new clothing if they refused to where the garment they where sent away I she can understand it will be clear to here there is no choice that still doesn't mean you will get her in street clothing but it will let her know you are in controlled till she is in her new place
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Have you had her see a psychiatrist? She certainly sounds mentally ill to me.
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Go into her room and throw away all of her nightgowns. Buy her a half-dozen pretty dusters. She can sleep in them, and she'll be presentable outside the home. No flip-flops. Slip on shoes. "Sorry, mom. My house -- my rules."
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blannie that is what I will try. She really did look like a crazy women when she went in the drs office in her jammies the other day. LOL I was also thinking Ill take a picture of her and let her SEE how she really looks??
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She has had 1 disaster after another since shes moved in with us. I have NEVER been around more drama in my whole life. Its like a bad dream, funny thing is I just ended up at the drs myself this week ( Im 50 ) with high blood pressure ( newly diagnosed not surprised ) an ulcer among other things. She dosent even want to hear what my dr said about me because its not about her. She IS affecting my health. I have 4 sisters. They are all really good at trying to tell me what to do with our mother but not 1 has lifted a finger to help in any way shape or form. Im just praying she gets her new apartment very soon before she gives me a heart attack or something.
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Another approach would be to tell her people will think she has dementia if she goes out like that. Scare her that she may wind up in a hospital with police/EMTs thinking she's losing her mental faculties and needs to be checked out. That's another way to go with it. Or appeal to her vanity, since she seems to have a lot of that.

As several of us have said, you need to get her out of your house ASAP. Hugs to you!
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blannie she dosent drive but she is capable of it. I have already made up my mind Ill do her errands for her if she would like, but Im NOT going to stop her if she wants to go in Krogers or something in her nightgown Ill be waiting in the car. Shes going to be really mad at me when I keep telling her that shes not walking around the house in her nightgown for a month and a half because my son and husband are un comfortable with it. She dosent see the problem. She holds grudges and thinks the whole world needs to revolve around her.
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Babalou she moved in with us after my dad died because she couldn't afford to live where they lived when he died. Shes on a waiting list for an apartment, she is capable of taking care of herself. Country mouse that's what I suggested was why cant you at least out on some sweatpants and she just dosent like them
( she owns them and wears them all the time normally ). This is PURELY for attention. I was already at my wits end before this happened.
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Your profile doesn't mention that your mother has any disabling condition. She's in her 70s. Many of us caregiving types here are that age. Why does she need care? Have you looked into alternatives for her?
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Is she able to go out on her own? If so, let her go and don't go with her. If not, don't take her anywhere until she dresses. Offer to help, if she's truly having trouble. Also, your house, your rules. Tell her if she continues to live with you, she MUST be dressed in day clothes and not her pajamas. Otherwise, she stays in her room. That's the only ideas I have.

Good luck - it sounds like your hands are full with her. Does she have to live with you? I see a recipe for disaster down the road for your family. She sounds like a handful.
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Speaking as someone who clad only in dressing gown and slippers once chased a bus down a main road in London in the rush hour and banged on the door to stop the driver leaving without my son, I am in position to criticise your mother.

On the other hand, a) it was a one-off, b) I was under considerable strain at the time, and c) my son has still not forgiven me.

So - so that your mother does not bring opprobrium on herself, purely - would sweat pants and sweat shirts be the answer? Something that's equally easy to put on and wear?
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Why is she living with you?
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