My Mother has become increasingly hostile, aggressive and bossy towards me. What can I do?

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She is 85. She used to be a very caring parent. She wants me to take her to a doctor that has already told her he will not operate. She has coerced my brother and his wife to side with her on this, and my mother demands that I take her(I have medical training) and coerce this man into doing surgery on her (whether it is necessary or not) I told her no. She will not let me call the doctor's office, either. She forbade me from calling. I am having the same feelings towards my mother that another person wrote.... wishing she had died instead of my father four years ago. He was always very caring towards me, my husband and my family. She has begun verbally abusing me since my father died four years ago. She is not always this way, but when she is, it is her way or the highway We are currently not speaking. I was the last of the four children to leave home and marry. She does not treat my siblings this way. Please help me, and give me some assistance in how to handle this. She is in apparently good health and will probably be around a long time. My family is considering moving to Maine or to Nova Scotia due to my asthma and also now due to my mother. We went on a six week trip around the country this summer, and she constantly was telling us o come home before something bad happened to us.

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Sounds like my mother, and you are lucky that you have your own life and household - so run!
Let the 'better' siblings look after her. I don't have a choice - but you DO.
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Thank you ALL for your great answers to my questions.
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Wiseone, back operations are so tricky. So many people are no better off for having been operated on. Many are worse off and discouraged. I've been studying this for about 6 yrs. now. That was when I was told I needed back surgery and all would be well (by the surgeon, of course). I quickly learned all is NOT always well and further back surgeries would probably be required. My Dad had a very hard time recovering from lower back surgery. He has never fully recovered and was in good, healthy shape before surgery except for a vertebra out of place. Sometimes surgeons are too quick to think surgery is the only answer. There are a lot of steps to help back problems without jumping to surgery, which is the last resort for most diagnoses. I wish the best for you and your Mom.
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It is a back operation. This is the next doctor of MANY she has seen that say she does not need an operation. By the way, my mother emailed me last night. She said my sister-in-law is going to take a day off to take her.
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Your profile says your mom has normal issues of aging. This really does not sound normal to me. So I, too wonder if something is going on medically with Mom. If you can influence her to have a thorough evaluation "to establish a benchmark in case you get sick in the future" I think that would be an excellent idea.

Go ahead and move. I hope it helps your asthma. It is bound to help your relationship with your mother in some ways, and make it more stressful in others. But you can't let that dictate the decisions you make about your own life.

Best wishes to you. And keep in touch.
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First, have your mother seen by a good psychiatrist to rule out diagnosis of an anxiety disorder or other diagnosis. Something is off with her behavior and if an answer is found and treated, everyone will fare better.

If her behavior still doesn't improve, move away just as you've described. Decide what your phone rules will be with your Mom BEFORE you get on the phone with her. Don't tell her your rules, just stick to them no matter what she says. Verbal abuse is an instant end to any phone call. Verbal abuse to your face is an instant end to your presence. Leave immediately from the room. Don't allow her to go with you, lock a door if needed.

I truly hope there's a medical reason for this change in your mother. If none can be found, you must be firm and stand your ground. You have a family and the right to live your life without her telling you how to do so. You never have to accept abuse from her or anyone else unless she has dementia. By making reasonable rules and setting reasonable boundaries, you'll be able to live your life and she'll be welcome into your life as long as she behaves in an acceptable manner.
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BTW, if your brother and his wife are so on board with the operation, THEY can take her.
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wiseone, it sounds like you are handling it fairly well by saying no to taking her to the unnecessary operation, then sticking to your no. Your mother may feel that if she pressures and berates you that you will cave. Not doing it shows her that you mean what you say. What kind of operation is it?

A lot of parents start feeling anxious when their children go on vacation. I don't know why that is. I've wondered if it is because the parent would like to be going with the children. Or maybe they feel the children won't be there if they are needed. My mother gets anxious when my brother goes on vacation for some reason. We don't tell her anymore when he and his family go. (I do think it would be wonderful if they took her with them and let me enjoy a vacation. But that doesn't happen.)

Your mother being so difficult indicates it would be very hard if she ever moved in with you. I hope she continues to be physically okay for a long time so you aren't faced with major decisions. I have a feeling assisted living is at the top of your list of choices if she ever needs more help.
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There are some books on the subject. I like Coping with your Difficult Older Parent.
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I'd say live your life while you can... Move and let here contact your other siblings. If you get 'hooked' you'll regret it and it could ruin your marriage and life (doesn't mean you have to loose contact with her).
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