For the past five years, I have been the primary go-to person when it comes to caring for my elderly mother. My mother's health has been poor for years, can no longer drive, uses a walker, and is on oxygen 24/7. Mom insists on staying in her home alone and there are very few caregiver options where she lives. Of her grown children, I end up being the one she calls on the most.
My Mom is of a generation that believes it is the oldest daughter's (me) responsibility to take care of elderly parents. My job is very demanding and requires that I travel a good bit. Mom usually wants to fill up any spare time I have by doing tasks for her. I have had multiple conversations with Mom about boundaries, and she has become better about respecting them. However, when she is in dire need of something she insists I drop whatever I'm doing and help her, even if I'm at work.
I have been putting off improving my job situation due to my obligations to my Mom. However, I have an opportunity to pursue an advanced degree, which would further my career and potentially increase my retirement pay (giving me a more secure financial future). Getting an advanced degree would require a major time commitment on my part and possibly a move that would take me farther away from Mom. It is a great opportunity for me and I want to take it.
I need to know how to transition away from being the emergency (or regular) go-to person for my Mom. My siblings live farther away and have not shown any interest in taking on this responsibility. Plus, Mom insists she wants me to be the one she can call on.
Can anyone give me advice on how to handle this?