My mother is driving me crazy by doing everything which I tell her not to do. What do I do to improve my life? - AgingCare.com

My mother is driving me crazy by doing everything which I tell her not to do. What do I do to improve my life?

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I am 65 and lost my wife 12 years back. My mother is 86 and and lost my father 25 years back. We are staying together for last 8 years. She drives me crazy by doing everything which I tell her not to do do. Recently for last two years it is becoming practically impossible to cope with her. What do I do to improve my life.

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If you're unhappy in your current situation, change it. What would happen if you moved out? Would your mom be able to live alone? If not, consider Independent Living for her or Assisted Living for her.

You're not a prisoner. It might take a lot of work to improve your life but if you really feel that it's time consider alternative living arrangements.
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I've dealt with some of this myself taking care of my mom. She loves medication (rubbing alcohol, Tylenol, laxatives, ointments, etc). So I've put them out of her reach. She'll screw up the remotes, so i watched a YouTube video that showed me how to modify her remote in such a way she doesn't mess it up (honestly someone needs to invent a simple remote for the elderly). She rummages in her dressers all day and changes cloths several times a day like she's hosting the Emmy awards and requires wardrobe changes at the commercial breaks. Well that one i let her do, it keeps get busy and calm and when she's busy she sleeps good at night. Not sure what your mom is doing. But i guess my recommendation is to find a middle ground where she's safely allowed some of those moments. When i got to the point i realized her daily wardrobe fixation only required my refolding six outfits and gave me and her a peaceful nights sleep, it was like i could hear angel harps in celebration of the realization. Hang in there.
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The reversal of roles from "mother raising son" to "son 'raising' mother" is a difficult one. I sympathize. Of course you did everything she told you to do, right? Think about her situation. My mother HATES for any of us to even suggest she change some aspect of her routine. She digs her heels in and fights, a lot like we kids did.

Maybe it's time for you guys to break up. Can mom live in an ALF? Can you also live independently? It's unlikely at your ages that either of you will "change" so maybe change out the living situation. You still have a long ways in front of you and I personally would go batty living with my mother and "trying" to get her to do my will. It just wouldn't work.

You most likely have her best interests at heart, but she may just see it as you being bossy. My mother told me off, big time, last year when she was trying to get an unnecessary surgery done. It was an epiphany for me that she really didn't respect me (or my sibs) and our concerns for her. She just wanted what she wanted. I stayed away for about 5-6 months and after that, we were fine. I quit trying to "run her life" and when she annoys me, I leave. Much better for both of us. Good luck with this.
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Maybe if you didn't "tell her" what to do she'd be more flexible. No one likes to be told what to do, or bossed around as she may see it.

Try a more collaborative approach. She's probably not happy with her own situation so bear that in mind and try to support her and work with her. She's not an employee.
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My mother is in an assisted living. I match her pants to a top and put a sign that says "next day clothes". Occasionally she "plays" with her clothes. I find them in the dirty clothes. Thrown in drawers. This upsets me since I wash her cloths. I just remade her bed, washed her dirty ones and put them on a shelf in her closet. Noticed yesterday that she had remade her bed. She has never done this. I could tell by the way it was made. Nothing I or anyone can do but I'm leaving on a five day trip and I need to know she has enough to wear till I get back. No, don't trust the facility to wash her stuff, they don't spot so the stains don't come out.
I'm a little OCD so I can sympathize. But in the end, if it doesn't hurt them, might as well let her have her way. One day I could tell Mom what to do, the next day she'd get mad. Look at it her way, she has done what and how she wanted all her adult life and now here child is telling her what to do. They get like children and need to be treated as such.
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Is your mom still able to do all her own ADLs? You say mom has general age-related decline, no Alz or dementia... that you're aware of. Do you think she's starting to show some signs of being forgetful or confused, or is she just not thrilled about taking instructions from her child?

For a time, I set my father up in the finished basement here. I gave him a kitchenette area - refrigerator, pantry, microwave, hotplate, toaster, etc. - and lots of room for his things and his life, separate from my things and my life upstairs. It worked great, for the most part, to keep him content and out of my hair daily.

Is there extra room in your house, or can you make room, to mimic you both having your independent lives even while you're living together?
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Endoffrayedrope, I have noticed that quite a few residents in ALF smoke. I was quite shocked, but they go out on the courtyard, patio, porch and picnic areas and smoke. Many are in wheelchairs and don't seem to be in the best of health, but as long as they are competent. I even see the staff doing it. So, I don't see why smoking would prevent your mom from gaining acceptance to a ALF.
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Prakash, would your mother listen to her doctor if he were to tell her not to do certain things? Or do you need to hire a helper who can keep watch over here at all times? It's unclear to me if you currently reside in the US or on the subcontinent.

Do you have doctors nearby who can test her mental capacity? It sounds as though she may need full time supervision at this point.
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Hey, you guys have been a God Send, ... I was to the point where
Here I was convinced I was the only one going thru this particular hell( excuse my language). My Mom has never been
easy but now it's like a vindeta against me and my long suffering Husband, who by the way, is usually the ONLY voice of reason here. and a Prince.

She would most surely be in an ALF, except, she's an 88 year old smoker, oh yeah, with only mild COPD?????? Great mystery of life, right?

As soon as I can find a Caretaker or aSL facility to take her, she'll be there , but as this point I'm Slowly loosing my mind and trying despritely to keep my 50 year marriage together......
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Oh Sunny yes they do smoke,,, look at the age of most of them, they smoked for years and it;s one pleasure left to them in thier minds. My mother says she will be buried with a cig in her hand, and I believe her! My MIL is in a rehab now, and we bumped into his old secretary outside smoking . Once some staff came out and asked her to stop as it is a "non smoking facility" , as they all are now,,,LOL ), she told them that they could then feel free to roll her over to the area where all the employees smoke.. in plain view of the home with a picnic table...
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